Stephen F. Austin to J. H. Hawkins, 05-01-1822

Summary: Backwardness and desolation of Mexico. Government favorable to his grant. Congress works in good order but slowly. Gen. Wilkinson.

[About May 1, 1822.]

Dear Sir:—After a long and tedious journey, I am at length at the fountain head of the new born nation. All I will say at present, (in regard to the country over which I have passed, since I left Texas,) is, that no one after reading Humboldt and other writers, can pass through this country without being sorely disappointed at every step. The nation, however, possesses great resources, and its vast and successful effort for independence combined with the general harmony which at this time prevails, furnish, I think, sure pledges of future greatness and prosperity.

In regard to my grant and settlement, I have only been here a few days and I have not had time for the full examination of my papers by Congress. I found the government here fully informed, (through the Governor of Texas), of all that had been done in relation to the grant; the steps I had taken, and the progress of the settlement— so far all seems satisfactory, and I can, I think, safely assure you, that Congress will in a few days sanction all that has been done, as well as the measures necessary to the future prosperity of the settlement.

We have just heard of the acknowledgement of the independence of this government by the United States—an event exciting the most lively sensations here—and fraught I hope, with solid and lasting benefits to both nations.

The Congress here do business in good order and with great deliberation, though rather slow; and the most perfect harmony prevails, notwithstanding the existence of two parties, Imperial and Republican.

Gen. Iturbide seems to have the happiness of his country much at heart, and I have no doubt he will act as a great and good man ought to do.

Gen. Wilkinson arrived here two days ago— you will be gratified to learn he possesses the confidence of this government in a high degree, receives the most distinguished attentions, resides at the house of the Captain General of this province, where he was waited on shortly after his arrival by Gen. Iturbide, and the members of the regency.

Mr. Irwin and Leftwich are here—their petition for a grant of land is before Congress, and will be acted on in a few days.

There are also two European applicants for grants, one proposing the settlement of 5000 Irish emigrants, and the other 8000 German

Gen. Trespelacias has been appointed Governor of Texas. Gen. Long was killed a short time since by a sentry—his family and his men will, I think, be provided for.

I hope to set out for the settlement in Texas, in the course of ten or twelve days.

With sentitments of sincere esteem I am, etc

S. T. [F.] Austin

Jos. H. Hawkins, Esq.

New Orleans.