Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo

(1848)

Audience

In the first place, the audiences for the treaty were the congresses of Mexico and the United States. Legislators in both counties were divided into several factions over the terms. In the United States, Northern members of the Whig Party led by Daniel Webster opposed the treaty, because they feared the addition of so much new territory would encourage the spread of slavery. Some Southern legislators, on the other hand, such as Jefferson Davis and Sam Houston, opposed the treaty because it did not annex enough of Mexico. The terms negotiated by Trist were a compromise between these extreme positions that made ratification by the U.S. Congress possible. Persuading Mexico's Congress to approve the treaty was more difficult. Mexican political factions were even more contentious than their counterparts in the United States regarding the end of the war. One faction, led by Manuel Crescencio Rejón, was convinced that the treaty would mean permanent economic subservience...

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Storming of Chapultapec (Library of Congress)

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