Edwin L Pettit to Stephen F Austin, 04-05-1830

Summary: Reporting revolutionary conditions in Mexico. A bill has been framed by the Government to stop immigration to Texas.

New Orleans April 5th 1830

Dear Sir;

By the Schr. Pocahontas which leaves this tomorrow for Texas I take liberty of writing you, and sending the N. A. Review containing an interesting peice on Texas.— I have succeed in recovering the amt of the insurance on my Vessel and am anxiously waiting the next Vessel from Vera Cruz (which is hourly expected) to determine whether to proceed to Mexico, you are doubtless in possession of what is transacting in that city, and I presume that Genl. Teran, as well as the troops and the national Sch. of War, Mosque will have arrived— by the last accounts from Vera Cruz, It appears that a committee of Congress have reported a project of a Law (which If passed will violate the Public Faith in the instance of your contracts with the Government) to stop the Emigration of Americans to Texas, The Brig of war Bravo was also preparing for sea to arrive between Tampico and Galveston Bay, Between us in confidence from all I have been able to learn the country is very unsettled, the States of Yucatan and Tabasco, have determined to split off unless a central Government is Established, and it is my opinion that Genl. Santa Ana is only waiting until the present administration becomes a little unpopular to raise a Grito, and place himself at the Head of the Republic as Dictator,— The present administration are taking some high handed Measures, at Vera Cruz, the Commandant of the Marine has been taken from his station and dismissed the service without even the form of a tryal, Commissions which were issued by Guerrero to privateers have also been taken from them when just ready to sail (after incuring all the Expense of fitting out) — Poor Thompson who went from this place to Vera Cruz recently has been arrested there and confined to the Congresso 74. and I am free to confess that I entertain some fears myself if I return that I my take up my summer quarters in the Castle of San Juan de Ulloa for overstaying my leave, however the next accounts will determine me, if I believe there is a probability of being arrested I shall be sent down by the consul as bearer of Dispatches for the Government which will protect me until my arrival in the City of Mexico where I can resign—

Meanwhile old foolish Ferdinand is preparing another expidition to reconquer Mexico—8000, men have saild from Cadiz, to be followed by 7000 more and also a new Governor for the Island of Cuba, but it is doubtful, if they gett farther than Cuba for the present (unless they turn their attention to Hayti the President of which has Declared wars against Spain,) as I am told by some gentlemen recently from Havana that the Troops there manifest such a reluctance to embark for Mexico from the severe loss the last expedition sustained, that nothing short of a revolution will be the consequence if they are driven to the last extreemity— amongst other projects before Congress is one to repeal the law of last year prohibiting the admission of foreign Cotton goods, so you may perceive that no dependence can be placed on the acts of the Goverment, the fact is Such a man as Santa Ana is much wanted at the Head of affairs, one who has energy enough to adhere to measures when once adopted, and who will by the bayonet if it be necessary, quiet the country and end this grito work,—

I fear the law alluded to to stop emigration will pass— I do not presume to advise you what course to persue it would be presumption in me to do so, but If I might be allowed to express an opinion it is that whatever may be done by the Present Party, no difficulty will exist when they go out to get things put on their proper and former footing by their successors who I think inevitably must be Santa Ana or Guerrero, therefore it occurs that it would be most prudent to keep quiet for the present at least and watch how affairs are going to turn— If I go to Mexico you may rest assured if I have any influence there it shall be exerted for you, and I shall certainly see Genl. Santa Ana before I leave that part of the country.— and whatever course you may eventually adopt you can depend on one person at least to act or suffer with you—

April 7th the Schr. Nimble so anxiously expected arrived yesterday and the accounts by her are very discouraging It is said that Guerrero has taken the field, and that Genl. Montes de Oca and others have formed here not that this part is discouraging I alluded to such parts as interested myself. We have Mexican papers to the 19th Ult. I see by the proceeding of Congress that the Eastern department has been divided and a Commandancia General for the State of Coahuila and Texas will be Established at San Antonio de Bejar. That Troops are ordered from different sections of the country— to Texas quite from Oajaca, I am inclined to think if Guerrero assumed a prominent stand the troops or at least those the present party can rely on will be detained and I am not sure that the Texas story is [not] used as pretext for removing such part from the Capital and neighbourhood as have not the confidence of the present gang—

The Bravo Brig of War was still at Vera CruzThompson sends me word not to come there at present—as I am entered as A deserter for overstaying my leave he is still arrested and is very like to continue so for some time— I think I shall go down and take the worst of it If I am quartered in the Castle this ensuing summer I shall have one consolation at least, that I am out of the reach of the Yellow fever meanwhile by the next vessel that leave this for Texas You will be informed if I go and as I do not on any account mean to abandon my intentions relative to the land I applyed for I beg you if the grant has been received from the Governor to retain for me such as you may believe to be the best that can be located, and select for me as you may believe to be most desirable and I assure you I shall be satisfyed— If you deem my correspondence of any value I assure you I shall be extreemly happy to hear from you, and all letters addressed to Mr. Breedlove will be forwarded to me whether I am to the north or South—and I will endeavour to be punctual—you will see that I have written this without much care or conections so I beg your indulgence of its numerous imperfections,—

Edward L. Pettit [Rubric]

To Col Stephen F Austin Texas