John H. Fowler to Stephen F. Austin, 09-22-1825

Summary: Asks help in apprehending a swindler. Choctaws are shortly to possess our country, and large number of settlers will emigrate to Texas.

Miller Cty. Ark. T.

Sept. 22nd 1825

Mr. Austin

Dear sir My acquaintance with your general character, (though I have not the pleasure of a personal acquaintance, having seen you only a few times while at William Stevensons in mount prairies) and the high station you hold in the land in which you live induces me to hope for success on the present occasion

A man by the name of Ruben McHaws has swindled me out of about $250,00 by tradeing me sundry forged notes of his own manufactory on citizens that I knew to be good; the precise amount is $242,25 two negro fellows one belonging to Mr John Johnson the other to Saml Hopson has recently run away—Hopsons Negro was taken up makeing his way to your province and is of opinion the other perished in the woods I have not heard that he has ever been found and says that McHaws persuaded them to run away I made every exersion to catch the vilian, but finally failed; and the only hope I now have of detecting him, is in your concern for my interest from the merits of the case: You need have no apprehension of the existance of my claim which is coroborated by the accompanied affidavit McHaws is of Moderate size with blue eyes and balld headed, And will perhaps pass through your dominions in the character of a pedler: Now sir if it be consistent with your authority to destrain his effects in order to secure me you will do me a favour never to be forgotten and I would be glad if you would write me immediately on the subject I feel the more anxiety on the occasion as this is a large amount for me, in my situation, to loose: And I do declare upon honour that I am able to establish the above accounts to all intents and purposes

We have nothing of import; you have heard no doubt that the Chactaws will shortly posses our country and many of the inhabitants talk of moveing to your province I intend so soon as my business will admit paying your country a visit and if I like to locate there.

John H. Fowler

Stephen F Austin Gov. Prov. Texes