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Entry from August 27, 2007
“The Republic of Texas is no more” (Anson Jones on 1846 annexation)

"The final act in this great drama is now performed. The Republic of Texas is no more.” Texas President Anson Jones delivered these memorable words on February 19, 1846, during the annexation of the Republic of Texas into the United States of America.

Wikipedia: Texas Annexation
On February 19, 1846, a ceremony was held to mark the official transfer of authority, and Texas President Anson Jones proclaimed: “The final act in this great drama is now performed. The Republic of Texas is no more.”

Southern Historical Quarterly, vol. 50, no. 1 (July 1946)
The Annexation of Texas
Eugene C. Barker
President Jones’s speech ended with an eloquent paragraph that is often quoted:

The lone star of Texas, which ten years since arose amid cloud, over fields of carnage, and obscurely shone for a while, has culminated, and, following an inscrutable destiny, has passed on and become fixed forever in that glorious constellation which all freemen and lovers of freedom in the world must reverence and adore--the American Union. Blending its rays with its sister stars, long may it continue to shine, and may a gracious heaven smile upon this consummation of the wishes of the two republics, now joined together in one. “May the union be perpetual, and may it be the means of conferring benefits and blessings upon the people of all the States” is my ardent prayer. The final act in this great drama is now performed. The Republic of Texas is no more.

Handbook of Texas Online
JONES, ANSON (1798-1858). Anson Jones, doctor, congressman, and the last president of the Republic of Texas, son of Solomon and Sarah (Strong) Jones, was born at Seekonkville, Great Barrington, Massachusetts, on January 20, 1798. He hoped to become a printer but was persuaded to study medicine, and in 1820 he was licensed by the Oneida, New York, Medical Society and began practice at Bainbridge. He met with meager success and soon moved to Norwich, where he opened a drugstore that failed. He subsequently started for Harpers Ferry, to begin business again in “the West,” but at Philadelphia he was arrested by a creditor and remained to open a medical office and teach school until 1824, when he went to Venezuela for two years. Jones returned to Philadelphia, opened a medical office, qualified for an M.D. degree at Jefferson Medical College in 1827, and became a Mason and an Odd Fellow. He became master of his Masonic lodge and grand master of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows in Pennsylvania, but his medical practice did not prosper. In October 1832 he renounced medicine and became a commission merchant in New Orleans, where he lived through cholera and yellow fever epidemics and a series of failures that left him despondent and broke.

In October 1833, at the suggestion of Jeremiah Brown, Jones drifted to Texas. He had engaged passage back to New Orleans when John A. Whartonqv and other citizens of Brazoria urged him to “give Texas a fair trial.” Jones soon had a practice at Brazoria worth $5,000 a year.
Jones was elected president of Texas in September 1844 and took office on December 9. He had made no campaign speeches, had not committed himself on the subject of annexation, and did not mention the subject in his inaugural address. After James K. Polk’s election as president of the United States on a platform of “reannexation of Texas” and President John Tyler’s proposal of annexation by joint resolution, Jones continued his silence. But the Texas Congress declared for joining the Union. Before Jones received official notice of the joint resolution, the charges of England and France induced him to delay action for ninety days. He promised to obtain from Mexico recognition of Texas independence and delayed calling the Texas Congress or a convention. Meanwhile, public sentiment for annexation and resentment against Jones mounted. He was burned in effigy, and threats were made to overthrow his government, but he remained silent until Charles Elliot returned from Mexico with the treaty of recognition. On June 4, 1845, Jones presented to the people of Texas the alternative of peace and independence or annexation. The Texas Congress rejected the treaty with Mexico, approved the joint resolution of annexation, and adopted resolutions censuring Jones. The Convention of 1845 considered removing Jones from office. He subsequently retained his title, though his duties were merely ministerial. On February 19, 1846, at the ceremony setting up the government of Texas as a state in the Union, Jones declared, “The Republic of Texas is no more.” Then he retired to Barrington, his plantation near Washington-on-the-Brazos.

Wikipedia: Anson Jones
Anson Jones (January 20, 1798 – January 9, 1858) was a doctor, businessman, congressman, and the last president of the Republic of Texas, sometimes called the “Architect of Annexation.”
In September 1844, Jones was elected president of the Republic of Texas, despite running a virtually silent campaign. That November, James K. Polk was elected president of the United States on a promise of Texas annexation. However, Jones held his silence on the subject, preferring to wait for the ideal outcome of simultaneous annexation and independence offers. This proved unpopular. Late in 1844, the Texas Congress declared for joining the United States, and popular sentiment in the republic for annexation grew. As the months went on with no word from Jones, his citizens burned him in effigy and threatened to overthrow his government. Through this Jones continued to wait.

Finally, in June 1845, Jones’s emissary to Mexico returned with a treaty recognizing the republic’s independence. At last he put the question before the people — accept the offer of annexation from the United States, or sign the independence treaty from Mexico and remain an independent state. The Congress and the people went for annexation.

Preparations began for annexation, and Jones’s role as president was greatly diminished. On February 19, 1846, a formal ceremony was held to bring Texas into the United States. Jones, in his last official act, declared that, “The Republic of Texas is no more.” Then he retired to Brazoria.

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Monday, August 27, 2007 • Permalink