Stephen F. Austin to Ahumada, 05-08-1826
Summary: Acknowledging receipt of order of May 4, and giving reasons for carrying out previous plans for war on the Wacoes, Tahuacanos, and Tahuiasea
My communication of the
In consequence of this order, I sent, at 3 o'clock P. M. an express to the Cherokees to suspend their operations, alleging a hope of a treaty of peace between the Indians and the Colonists, in order to conceal the true motive; stating to them at the same time, that they must remain in readiness to march at the earliest notice, in case the peace could not be affected. I had already written my orders to the Captains of Militia, informing them that the contemplated expedition was suspended in consequence of some hope of peace, which I did, to give a reason for the counterorder without exposing the true motive; but previous to these orders leaving my office, I received, at 6. o'clock P. M. by express a note from Captain Sims of the Company of Militia of the Brazos, District of Bravo, near the road to Bexar, informing me that while he was executing my orders to explore a covered road to the Indian Villages, along the bottom of the river, to avoid being noticed on a march through prairie lands, he discovered, at about twenty five leagues above the road to Bexar, trails of mounted Indians, and a party on foot, leading to the settlement. He returned at once to give information. I doubt not but a party left their villages to attack us, and our settlements are so scattered that it is difficult to determine upon what point they will fall first. I have already transmitted orders in every direction to send out spies. In consequence of this notice I have thought it highly important not to communicate your order to suspend any hostile movements against the Indians, because the Militia are now ready to march to the villages, and I think, that if we are so fortunate as to discover the party that came to attack us, it would be advisable, after having routed them, to proceed by forced marches to their villages, and to fall on them before they had recovered from the terror inseparable from defeat. I hope these circumstances will be considered a sufficient excuse for my not suspending hostile movements as you order me to do.
If the occurrences above alluded to do not compel me to march to
the Indian Villages, I shall defer the expedition agreeably to your
orders, in which event, I think we ought to meet at the crossing of
the road to Bexar, on the
The above is in answer to your reserved communication.
God and Liberty.
San Felipe de Austin,