Stephen F Austin to Samuel M Williams, 11-05-1833

Summary: Law of April 6, 1830, amended. Santa Anna favorable to Texas. Quarrel with Farias. Danger that Texas will be organized as a territory. Willingness to sacrifice self for Texas.

[From Williams Papers, Rosenberg Library, Galveston, Tex.]

Mexico Novr. 5—-1833

Dr Sir.

A number of cases occurred here during the Cholera of persons who died, were taken to the grave and then came to life again—one man, rolled up in a blanket was thrown into a pit with many others, lime was first spread over them. It operated on this man so as to stimulate him to life again—he got up and walked home. His appearance there could not have caused a more sudden and agreable surprise, than the sight of your letter of 17 sept, did to me. Col B. [Butler] recd letters from C. [Coles?] and W. [Whiteside] stating in the positive that you and Cap Martin were dead. Doctor Rivers wrote the same from Monclova so that I had no doubt of it. I really congratulate you and Sarah that they were mistaken.

The law repealing the 11 article of 6 april 1830 passed both houses ten days since, and I understand has been approved by the president but it is not published yet—presume it will be in two or three days.

I think that all the Texas matters will be satisfactorily arranged in a short time. I shall remain here as long as anything is undone,-— if there is a prospect of doing any good by it. I think something will be effected in the mail and customhouse arrangements. It is said that Zavala is to be minister of State, and some speak of Genl Mejia for the war department, I believe there will be a change of ministers in a few days.

I have had two interviews with the President Santana. He speaks very friendly about Texas. I am of opinion that if you all keep quiet and obey the state laws that the substance of all Texas wants will be granted. The appearance of things is much better than it was a month or even two weeks ago.

Bustamante, Arista and a large number of the banished, about 300 left here a few days since for vera cruz to embark—they were banished for life.

Congress have repealed all laws that gave power to judges or civil authority to enforce the collection of diezmos, or to compel nuns or monkes to remain in convents contrary to their will—so that it is now a mere matter of conscience to pay tythes or stay in a convent, several nuns are out already— the whole system as it existed is undergoing a change desean tumbar lo gótico, y fabricar conforme a lo moderno.

No 11 league grants can be had now for any price within reason— not one.

I wish you to reflect on the awkward situation your affairs as well as mine would have been left, if you had actually died—and try and close them all so as to run no more risks for the future. Luke writes that all will be content with sending the State question to the States. This remark of his displays more common sense than was in the fashion when I left. I got a letter from Coles the last of September of an opposite character which had a very bad effect. It has taken almost ever since to remedy the evils proclaimed by it. what I mean to say is that it irritated me and I acted under that influence—but all is smooth again.

Dn Victor Blanco is a good friend—he rejoices much that you are not a ghost, and wishes you to be very attentive to finish all the titles for which you are agent which I hope you will do and write to him.

I doubt whether I shall return now I will stay as long as anything is to be done for the good of Texas. The sacrifice Luke speaks of (as a main thing) is with me a secondary affair. I would sacri- fice my property and life to serve Texas and the substantial settlers, the farmers and working men—but I would not willingly do that much for men who would cut me, if they could. I have drawn on N. O (Beers, St John and co) for one thousand dollars on the letters of credit you sent me. I think I shall not need any more.

Get the titles from Padilla (3 leagues) and make the transfers of the Aguirrie tract for as they now stand your death would loose them, as you will see by examining the subject. The tract that Brown surveyed east of colorado I wish to keep and will not part from at present. Also close the Cole business and in fact all other matters and be ready for anything that may happen.

My present opinion is that all will result fortunately (that is if you all keep quiet at home) but in these ticklish times, almost every day brings in unexpected change of some kind.

I fear much difficulty about the state from one quarter, and I have just been told that an effort would be made from that source to make it a territory under the plan of the territories in the U. S. I replyed that I should protest against it, and told the President so or rather showed him my instructions on that point—besides this, there is no constitutional power in congress to make it a territory. To be more plain I am just now informed that Za. [Zavala] is in favor of a territory tho he told me the reverse not two days since. I told him I should protest against it. Since then he has not said anything to me about it.

[Stephen F. Austin.]