Stephen F Austin to Ayuntamiento of San Felipe, 01-17-1834
Summary: Announcing arrest and advising tranquillity.
I have been arrested by an order from the minister of war, and
leave soon for Mexico to answer to a charge made against me, as I
understand, for writing an officio to the Ayuntamiento[s] of Texas,
I do not in any manner blame the government for arresting me, and I particularly request that there may be no excitement about it.
I give the advice to the people there that I have always given, keep quiet, discountenance all revolutionary measures or men, obey the state authorities and laws so long as you are attached to Coahuila, have no more conventions, petition through the legal channels, that is through the ayuntamiento and chief of department, harmonize fully with the people of Bexar and Goliad, and act with them.
The general government are disposed to do everything for Texas that can be done to promote its prosperity and welfare that is consistent with the constitution and laws, and I have no doubt the state government will do the same if they are applied to in a proper manner.
It will be remembered that I went to Mexico as a public agent
with specific instructions, and as such, that it was my duty to be
governed by them, and by the general wish of the people as expressed
to me. Also, that when I left in
I have in all my acts conformed to this public wish of the people,
so far as I was informed of it, and when I despaired of obtaining
any remedy, as I did the beginning of
I understand, and I rejoice to hear it, that public opinion has
settled down on a more reasonable basis, and that the most of the
Ayuntamientos of Texas have expressed their wish to proceed in
a legal manner to seek redress. I ought to have been informed of
this change, but I was not, and knew nothing of it to a certainty,
The past events in Texas necessarily grew out of the revolution
of Jalappa, which overturned the constitution and produced the
counter revolution of Vera Cruz, which extended over the whole
country, and involved Texas with the rest. It is well known that
it was my wish to keep Texas, and particularly the colony, out of
all revolution, and I tried to do so, but the flame broke out in my
absence from Texas, in
I have long since informed the Ayuntamientos of Texas of the
repeal of the law of
Under these circumstances the prospects of Texas are better than they ever have been. The national revolution is ended, a constitutional government exists, the people are obedient to the government and laws, everywhere. Be the same in Texas, and have no more excitements, tolerate no more violent measures, and you will prosper and obtain from the government all that reasonable men ought to ask for.
The last year has been one of calamities for Texas, floods, pestilence, and commotions, I hope the present year will be more favorable. I request that you will have this letter published for general information, and also the enclosed copy of the answer given to me by his Excellency the minister of relations. You will see by this answer the very favorable and friendly disposition of the general government to make a state or a territory of Texas, and do everything else within its constitutional powers for the good of that country.
Respectfully your most ob't sert.,