Moses Austin to Baron de Bastrop, 01-26-1821

Summary: Loss through failure of Bank of St. Louis. Plans for return to Texas. Warns against illegal trade.

Near Nachitoches Jany 26th, 1821

My Good Sr

On my arrival at Mr Castlemans I wrote you both by Mr Quirk and by the officer about to return inclosing you a Newspaper the only one I could then command, being told yesterday that the Spanish officer—had not yet returned I again profit by the same oppory to make further communications to you I have nothing of interests to communicate of a Public nature except what you will find in the Daly papers. As to myself—I have learned that the total failure of the Bank of St Louis has involved me in a loss of (30 000) thirty thousand Dollars investments I had made in said Bank—this unhappy event has Compelled me to return to the upper country with out Delay—and settle and save the balance of my property, I shall return to Nachitoches by May next.

I mentioned in my last that I wished a passport to leave with my property at the mouth of the Colorado and Deposit my property untill I could Visit St Antonio and receive the will of the Governor, and further instructions the property I shall bring will be farming Utensils and other articles such as Iron Ware Tin Ware and Crates of Liverpool ware and Salt only sufficient to purchase Stock for a farm as to Indians in that quarter I can make myself safe in a few days as I shall have 12 or 15 Hired hands for whose conduct, I will be accountable If you can obtain a permit for me to land with my property at the place I have requested to say Mouth of the Colorado and permission is given to Establish a Town and Settle 300 families One year would make a Change in the State and condition of Saint Antonio beyond any thing, you can now believe I have a full confidence that a Town at the Mouth of Colorado in three years would become of the utmost Consequence and an interest in this Town would give some thousand of Dollars to the friends of this establishment without any violation of Confidence or injury to Government, people of the first class would immediately Resort to this Establishment with property that would secure their fidelity to the King and Constitution of Spain.

I shall, life and Health admiting most undoubtedly return from the upper Country by May Next whin I wish to remove with all my property to the Colorado and I hope you will have the power to obtain a pasport for me, and my household to land at that place, the object of which will be to commence farming Tho Governor was pleased to say that if I returned I might depend on his friendship— on my part I assure you that I shall make use of every Exertion in my power to promote the interest of the Government, that gives me protection.

I hope my Dear Sr. you will pardon the liberty I have taken in this calling on your friendship— I trust the day will arrive when— I shall have it in my power to make full and Satisfactory compensation.

I cannot close this letter without again reminding you that both Leut. Sandival and yourself are in danger of being drawn into difficulty from the extreem imprudence of Kirkham This unguarded man has told with out reserve that any amount of goods he took to St Anthonio would be received by Leut. Sandivall into his store this language has been so many times told that I have been questioned on the subject and altho I knew nothing of Kirkham ingagements with Leut. Sandival yet I took the liberty to say that Kirkham had misstated facts and that no friend of his at Saint Antonio would expose himself to ruin, to serve him he has as I am told stated that his friends was to have 80 or 90 Mules ready for him in march next— I have mentioned these things that every Necessary precaution may be made use of to prevent injury resulting therefrom

I have inclosed every paper I could collect that contained any information of moment to you or the Government you will see the resolution of Ky on Spains affairs altho the Legislature have instructed there Representatives in Congress to oppose the Trety between Spain and the United States yet it is the most general beleif that it will be accepted if ratified by the Spanish Government, War will not take place with the U States and Spain unless some of the Western States have power to rule the Union the Eastern and Middle States are in opposition to extending the limits of the United States and War with Spain


Jany 28 Year 21

To the Honorable Baron Bastrop

At the Capital of the Province of Texas