Stephen F Austin to M B Menard, 11-13-1830
Summary: Appointing Menard his agent in Nacogdoches to give immigrants certificates of reception into Austin's colony. Instructions for execution of this commission.
San Felipe de Austin
Dr Sir, The enclosed letter from T. F. McKinny Esqr. will explain to you the reasons why I have taken the liberty of troubling you with this letter and the enc[l]osed instructions. I applied to Mr. McKinney to recommend to me a suitable person in Nacogdoches as agent to give certificates of reception to emigrants bound to this Colony, who pass through that place. On his recommendation I have sent to you the enclosed appointment and instructions made out in Spanish. He has aprised me that you would attend to it, and that full confidence might be placed in you. I hope this will be sufficient to explain to you why I have troubled you with this matter. Should you feel any unwillingness to attend to it, you can return the papers to me, or to Mr. S. M. Williams at this place by some safe conveyance.
The object of the certificates which you are to issue to the emigrants, is to place Evidence in their hands that they are a part of the Settlers who enter into my contracts, which they can present to Col. Piedras, so as to avoid any detention or difficulty in pursuing their journey to this place
I send you a pamphlet containing translations of the colonization
laws, and of my contracts with Government. You will see that the
5 article of my contract (page 49) prohibits me from admitting
criminals etc etc (see the said article) This article is cited in the
2d. article of your instructions. I wish to do my duty strickly.
The object of the government I understand to be, to keep out bad
and useless men, and to admit all who are honest, industrious and
moral, and I wish you to keep that rule in view in giving the
certificates. Men of families who bring their wives and children are
I do not require that all should be rejected who bring no recommendations with them, for I know that many good men emigrate without providing themselves with recommendations, because they are not apprised of the necessity of doing so. A vagabond or an indolent drunken, or disorderly person is very apt to shew what he is by his appearance, conversation or deportment and a nice observer may generally form a pritty correct idea of him on a short acquaintance
I must request that you take pains to impress upon the emigrants the necessity of presenting themselves, immediately to Col. Piedras, and that they treat him with respect and attention which is due to the commanding officer of this nation on that frontier, and also that they treat all the officers and authorities of this government with proper respect, and I hope you will refuse certificates to all who fail to do so.
Shew your instructions to Col. Piedras, as you are required to do in the 7 article and have a friendly understanding with him. try to remove all difficulties to the emigration of good men, and get all through you can who are worthy of being admitted: Trouble Piedras as little as possible; but call on him often enough to shew that you respect his authority and wish to act in concert with him.
You will of course expect a compensation for your trouble. This business is for the benefit of the emigrant, and I think that each certificate ought to entitle you to receive half a dollar from the person who gets it, and you can charge that sum— Should you think this insufficient write me frankly your views on the subject
S. F. Austin [Rubric]
N. B. I hope you will keep me informed of whatever may occur of interest. In my absence your letters will be answered by Mr S. M. Williams—
Algunos emigrados honrados y dignos de ser recibidos en las
contratas de colonización q. tengo celebradas con el Gobno Mexno—,
entran en el territorio Mex° sin los pasaportes necesarios; parte por
no saber que era preciso tener pasaportes, y otra parte por no poder
conseguirlos por la falta de un agente competente en el puerto de
su prosedencia para espedirlos— A fin de remediar estos embarazos
que impiden la población y progreso del pais, y para cumplir con
mas ecsactitud con la ley de colonización, y con mis contratas
San Felipe de Austin
Estevan F. Austin [Rubric]
[Inclosure: Blank certificate.]