Moses Austin to James Bryan, 10-19-1812

Summary: Lead. Militia. Indians.

Durham Hall Mine A Burton Octbr 19 1812

Mr James Bryan

Dear S-r I have wrote you sundry times since you left us, to Louis Vill . . . and Pittsburg, and last to Philadelphia, and have only recvd two letters from you up to this month. I have recvd from our friend and son Stephen F Austin information that he had raised his Cargo with but little loss, and that he was in expectation of leaving Orleans in or about the first of Octbr that he would obtain 12 Cents for his shott by Draght on Philadelphia and that he should be obliged to return by way of Nashville as the Indians rendered the Georgia rout dangerous so that I expect he will forward on his Draght, and take the Mines in his way to the North.

Altho business was dul and collections almost impossible when you left us its much more difficult to obtain either lead or money at this time then in the Spring, for the last two months almost every man in the Country has Either been out on the frountier or are held in requisition to march at a moments notice this as you may suppose, has put a full Stop to all business and all Collection, the Courts have don no business the General Court did not attempt, any thing, not to, call the suites, and Very little lead has been made this summer and not much will be made this fall and Winter

Its my opinion that lead must be up. the quantity made and that will be made, in this Country cannot furnish the United States.

I have sent a small quantity of shott to Nashville which I am doubtful I shall not do much, If I obtain 14 Dollars its the most and I am doubtfull 12$50 or 13 will be about the price they will command. I had your, boat, put in good Order to take a Cargo, but believe me She is not the boat you bought her for. I put 12 Thousand only into her and about 5000 on freight and Mr Ray told me that he had to make use of uncommon precaution in assendg. the Ohio with that load and advises never to attempt a load in her equal to what you have calculated, I think Mr Ray will be back in all this week—

I have a mill now ready for milling sheet lead, and the price now in Orleans is such as to Justify sending down, from 20 to 25 Dollars is Now the price of Milled Sheet Lead in Orleans and I think by exertions I may make out a Small Cargo in all Next month If the mines turn out as, I have reason to expect—

I trust ear this reaches you you will have heard of the rumors. Storm at New Orleans and the damage that has been sustained. Thank God Stephen has Escaped as his Cargo was. at the place his boat, sank—and he did not arrive untill the day after. John Perry and Mc Guir returned yesterday and have lost every thing, their boat and Cargo Sank in Sixty or Seventy feet Water they sold out for 100 Dollars, the Chance of the Cargo. Mc Guir I think will Never see Orleans again, or any Other Country, he is almost done with this World. John Perry is laso much unwell. Stephen has enjoyed good health, he says the Country agrees with him and that it has been quite healthy this summer.

I think the Indians, have receivd a Check and that they will not trouble us any more this fall. I think William Bates will be at home in a day or two. I am told the Company was dischargd at St Louis yesterday, and that William Bates Evans and Mc Gahan will be at the mines on the Morrow

Ashley and Hews Companey will also be discharged and the place of the Troops from this quarter will be replaced—by—companeys. from the Cape Girardeau and I am in hopes we shall not be called on again this fall—but every thing depends on the advance of troops North Ward—the fall of General Hull has induced all the Indians on the Illinois and high up the Mississippi to arrise against us—

If my son Stephen Should return to the mines he will stay but a day or two before he takes his Journey to Philadelphia so as to be on, in, time to return with the family

As to goods such is the difficulty in Obtaining payments, that I am determined Never to have any more untill times alter, If I can collect half the dabts now Due, Its more than I Expect, at the same time goods will be I think in demand in the Spring, As soon as William Bates returns I think some lead may be collected and. I shall give every Assistance in my power

Yesterday brought letters from Mrs Austin She seamed to think that If she could see you it would give her some releaf She has recovered her law Suite, by which she will be put in possession of a handsome property and some money—at least for Spending money She was in hopes you would be in Philadelphia in time to go to the Northward with her—I look forward to the time when I shall See you all return in Safety

Moses Austin

Mr William Bates has this day returned from St Charles the Company were discharged only two Days since Say on the 20th Ins-t


[Addressed:] Mr James Bryan, Philadelphia