12. Benjamin E. Green, the twenty-two-year-old secretary of the U.S. legation in Mexico, was the son of Duff Green, a politically prominent newspaper editor and confidant of President Tyler. For six months Green served as acting changé d'affaires until the arrival of the new minister, Wilson Shannon. Green's brief tenure as the senior-ranking U.S. diplomat in the capital was a tempestuous one, coinciding with the rapid deterioration of relations between the United States and Mexico as a result of the Tyler administration's efforts to annex Texas. Haynes, Soldiers of Misfortune, 189.
Supplemental Chapter ~ Notes
1. Green's captivity obviously prevented him from forming a more charitable opinion of the Mexican character, although it is doubtful, given his phobic racial attitudes, that he would have held a different view had he visited Mexico under more pleasant circumstances. By contrast, American diplomats Brantz Mayer and Waddy Thompson, both of whom served in Mexico in the early 1840s, penned memoirs of their experiences upon their return to the United States and wrote with considerable warmth and affection for the people of Mexico. Mayer, Mexico, As It Was and As It Is, 294-295; Thompson, Recollections of Mexico, vi.
2. The view that environment and climate were the chief determinants of racial differentiation was developed in 1787 by a professor of moral philosophy Samuel Stanhope Smith. This theory, which held that all races were descended from the same species, had come under increasing attack in the nineteenth century from ethnologists who sought to prove the biological superiority of whites; nonetheless, many Anglo-Americans continued to believe that the heat of lower latitudes rendered the inhabitants of tropical regions indolent and listless. William Stanton, The Leopard's Spots, 3-14.
3. In the spring of 1843, Judge James W. Robinson arrived in Texas with peace proposals from Santa Anna (note 13, Chapter XV). Although the Mexican leader's terms - the return of