Stephen F Austin to James F Perry, 01-16-1834

Summary: Remain quiet and "let me perish if such is to be my fate." Government would grant territorial organization to Texas if the ayuntamientos asked for it, but there should be no more conventions. General instructions for management of Austin's affairs.

Monterrey Jany 16 1834

Dr Brother

I wrote on the 14 by mail and sent some seeds of the Mexican cipres pronounced seepres. I now send some more. Sow them in a bed like red pepper seed—raise it so that the water will not lay on it. Water it in dry weather. Take care of the plants, they will do to transplant in two years.

The last year has been one of calamities for Texas, overflow pestilence and conventions. I hope this year may be more favour- able and that the people will have no more excitements, and all harmonize amongst themselves, and with the people and authorities of Bexar. Without this, they will not prosper—on the contrary they will ruin themselves.

In a moment of irritation and impatience I wrote an imprudent letter to the Ayuntam of Texas in October last for which I have been arrested and ordered back to Mexico for which place I leave soon as a prisoner. I do not blame the govt at all for this— nry treatment has been very good since my arrest in this place, this matter will cost me some months delay and perhaps a year before I can return to make one of your family as I intend to do if I live to get back. I have written to Williams by mail to furnish me with the means of living in Mexico. I can sell drafts on Orleans [at] . . . [per cent] premium-— Write to me under cover to W[S. Parr]ott, merchant Mexico,

The Genl [Govt is dis]posed to do everything for Texas that can be done and are friendly and wish the country to prosper, They are willing to make it a State or a territory organized like Arkansas and would do so if it was asked for unanimously by the Ayuntamientos—but no more conventions.

All the people have to do is to remain quiet and let Bexar take the lead in everything.

I hope there will be no excitement on account of my arrest, it will do me harm and great harm to Texas—keep quiet and let me perish if such is to be my fate. I have suffered myself to be drawn into the whirlpool by the excited men and by the party spirit of the time in Texas. Men whose fortunes I have labored to make have been my worst enemies. They can now rejoice and triumph at my difficulties, but no good man will envy them their joy, nor participate in it.

My advice to Texas is, what it always has been remain quiet- populate the country—improve your farms—and discountenance all kind of revolutionary men or principles. If this advice is followed that country will prosper. So long as you belong to Coahuila, obey the laws and the authorities of that State.

I wish all the people well, even my enemies. I have given no just cause for any one to be my enemy but no man can expect to go through with so great an enterprise as the settling of a wilderness, under the circumstances I did, without exposing himself to the attacks of envy jealousy and malignity.

Collect all the stock you can on claims due me and put them in your brand on the Chocolate Bayou place—keep yourself clean of party and of politics and seek happiness within the limits of your farm and the circle of your family and personal friends. I will join [you] in that circle as soon as I can, [and never] leave it.

Remember me to the ch[ildren] to your neighbours and to Henry and family—to Phillips and Eliza and dont let little Stephen forget me.

Your brother

S. F. Austin [Rubric]

[J. F.] Perry

[Addressed:] Mr. James F. Perry care of S. M. Williams San Felipe de Austin Texas

By Mr. Powel

I send my two miniatures by Mr. Powel for Emily and hope they may arrive safely. Wet will ruin them as they are painted on ivory in water colors.