Sunday, April 24, 2016

The Texas Embassy in the City of Light: A Sorry History of Greed, Slavery and, now, New Talk of Secession

PARIS — Near Place Vendôme in the most luxurious corner of Paris, a few steps from the Ritz and across from a new Louis Vuitton store, but high above the street where nobody is likely to notice, a legend engraved in stone marks the site of the Ambassade du Texas, and informs the passer-by below that on 29 September 1839 France was the first nation to recognize that short-lived republic.

This historical relic of Lone Star independence in la ville lumière is a quaint reminder of the nation that once was and, between the etched lines, of its particularly grim, even gruesome, history of slavery, anti-Hispanic racism, grand delusions and grinding privations. French recognition, after all, was not a matter of idealism or ideology, but of greed, and much of Texas at the time was a hell on earth that some of the cynical French tried to sell to their countrymen as paradise. ... READ THE REST OF THIS STORY ON THE DAILY BEAST.