Stephen F Austin to Elias R Wightman, 01-24-1830

Summary: Instructions for surveying. Schools.

Dr Sir,

I have sent Mr Selkerk for the purpose of making up another set of hands so as to start another compass. The work that is wanted will not be a very profitable job and rather bad railing. I wish the coast meandered, beginning at Jinnins' camp on Colorado and meandering down to its mouth, thence along the coast to the Karankaway Bay.

I have understood that you had taken up a school and could not leave there to survey, if this be the case I wish you to let Selkerk have your compass. If it is in any manner injured I will pay you its full value or should you wish to sell it I will give you Eighty Dollars cash for it.

I wish you to speak to Burnham for the use of his best perogue to take fresh water and provisions along the coast. We cannot do without it and will pay for the hire if Burnham will not lend it.

Considering the badness of the running and the quantity of work that must be done before Leagues can be run off I think that this job will not be an object of sufficient importance for you to quit your school. After the coast is all meandered the creeks must also be all meandered and a general plot of the whole made and then laid off in Leagues so that it will not be a profitable job for it is probable that not more than one third of the Leagues will be taken for some years—you can do as you please— If you want this job you have had the promise of it, and can get it.

I shall wait here untill the meanders of the coast are all completed.

I think the best plan will be to let Selkerk have the compass. Shall come by Matagorda on my return.

S. F. Austin

Jany 24, 1830

[Addressed] Mr. E. R. Weightman