While the U.S. and Mexico are amicable neighbors today, that hasnt always been the case. Offering to purchase much of the present-day Southwest for over $25 million, U.S. leaders never intended for the Texan War to happen. Because most early troubles involving strained relations with the U.S. and Mexico concerned Texas and nearby lands, it is no surprise that this turmoil began with Texas.
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From 1836 until 1845, Texas remained an independent entity. During this time, Mexico, already concerned with Texas future, had another crisis on their hands: the Yucatan declaring its desire to become independent. Taking advantage of this opportunity, American President John Tyler introduced a proposal in congress that called for the annexation of Texas. Infuriating Mexico, tense relations with their northern neighbor, the U.S., became even more strained.
Calling itself the “Lone Star Republic,” Texas was now made the 28th state. Attempting to occupy more territory than its previous border allowance, this “New Texas” extended its border to the Rio Grande. As a result, Texas doubled in size and lands were taken from Mexico. Today, these lands include Colorado and New Mexico. Still embattled with Mexico over these taken lands, new President James K. Polk sought this taken territory and wanted even more lands; which included more of present-day New Mexico and California. Suggesting a large purchase price, Polk offered the Mexican government $5 million for New Mexico and $25 million for California. The $30 million sale price was to be exchanged for the release of one million square miles.
Caring more for national pride and to hold on to its territories than money, Mexico did not want to sell. Mexican people threatened rebellion and did not wish to lose their homes to the U.S. As final option, President Polk knew war would be the answer. What ensued would be a war between Mexico and the U.S., which resulted in Mexicos northern territories eventually becoming additional United States’ lands. However, history was changed on both sides during this time, as the famous Battle of the Alamo was fought and made each country realize the importance of Texas. Early Mexican-American Relations!