link to ClassBrain Home  link to ClassBrain Home
 link to site map
Defining Documents Home 
 US Constitution & The Bill Of Rights
 Amendments To The US Constitution
 Budgets of the US Government
 Important Writings, Papers, & Designs
 Presidential Executive Orders
 Supreme Court Decisions
 plug-in page link
 link to ask classbrain


Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, 1848
By Nicholas Trist
Mar 17, 2006, 12:10pm

In November 1835, the northern part of the Mexican state of Coahuila-Tejas declared itself in revolt against Mexico's new centralist government headed by President Antonio pez de Santa Anna. By February 1836, Texans declared their territory to be independent and that its border extended to the Rio Grande rather than the Rio Nueces that Mexicans recognized as the dividing line. Although the Texans proclaimed themselves citizens of the Independent Republic of Texas on April 21, 1836 following their victory over the Mexicans at the Battle of San Jacinto, Mexicans continued to consider Tejas a rebellious province that they would reconquer someday.

In December 1845, the U.S. Congress voted to annex the Texas Republic and soon sent troops led by General Zachary Taylor to the Rio Grande (regarded by Mexicans as their territory) to protect its border with Mexico. The inevitable clashes between Mexican troops and U.S. forces provided the rationale for a Congressional declaration of war on May 13, 1846.

Library of Congress

Hostilities continued for the next two years as General Taylor led his troops through to Monterrey, and General Stephen Kearny and his men went to New Mexico, Chihuahua, and California. But it was General Winfield Scott and his army that delivered the decisive blows as they marched from Veracruz to Puebla and finally captured Mexico City itself in August 1847.

Mexican officials and Nicholas Trist, President Polk's representative, began discussions for a peace treaty that August. On February 2, 1848 the Treaty was signed in Guadalupe Hidalgo, a city north of the capital where the Mexican government had fled as U.S. troops advanced. Its provisions called for Mexico to cede 55% of its territory (present-day Arizona, California, New Mexico, Texas, and parts of Colorado, Nevada and Utah) in exchange for fifteen million dollars in compensation for war-related damage to Mexican property.

Other provisions stipulated the Texas border at the Rio Grande (Article V), protection for the property and civil rights of Mexican nationals living within the new border (Articles VIII and IX), U.S. promise to police its side of the border (Article XI), and compulsory arbitration of future disputes between the two countries (Article XXI). When the U.S. Senate ratified the treaty in March, it deleted Article X guaranteeing the protection of Mexican land grants. Following the Senate's ratification of the treaty, U.S. troops left Mexico City.
Source: Library of Congress

Read the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
Source: NARA
Citation: Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo [Exchange copy], February 2, 1848; Perfected Treaties, 1778-1945; Record Group 11; General Records of the United States Government, 1778-1992; National Archives.

Additional Learning Links

Use this map to see the areas affected by the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.
Source: Library of Congress

Teaching with the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
Source: NARA - Digital Classroom

© Copyright 2006 by

Top of Page



Latest Headlines
Antarctic Treaty
Lousiana Purchase Treaty, 1803
Treaty of Paris -1783
Treaty of Fort Laramie, 1868
Formal Surrender of Japan, 1945
Treaty of Ghent, 1814
Treaty of Alliance with France (1778)
Articles of Agreement
Lee's Surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia
Limited Test Ban Treaty, 1963
Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, 1848
Platt Amendment, 1903
Teller Amendment to the US Declaration of War Against Spain

Corporate info | ClassBrain Home | Privacy and Copyright | Contact | Parents & Teachers | NeedHelp?