Stpehen F. Austin to Captian Richard Fields, other chiefs and warriors of the Cherokee Nation , 04-24-1826

Summary: Asking cooperation and outlining plan for campaign against Waco and Tahuacano Indians. Austin's relations with Shawnees in Missouri.


The Mexican Government have called on the new settlers of this Colony to fight their enemies the Wacos Tawakanies and Toweass Indians Indians. The cherokees and their friends the Shawnees and Delawares are also new Settlers; like us they have come to seek a new home in this country and procure lands from the Mexican Nation, and like us they also owe obedience to the orders of the Government and are bound in duty to fight the enemies of the Mexican people. I can with confidence answer for the cherokees that they are good warriors, but as yet they have not had an opportunity of proving to their new friends the mexicans how useful they can be—you have no doubt been anxious to do so and have always been ready to turn out and fight for your new country, you sent me word by Mr John Cummins and John Miligan that you would join us to fight the wacos whenever I called on you. I have always looked upon you as friends who could be depended on I am happy to inform you that an opportunity now offers for you to shew the Govt that you are both good warriors and good citizens. The men of this Colony will attack the waco and Tawakany villages on the Brazos on the morning of the 25 of may next, and I now call on you both as an officer of the Mexican Govt and as a friend and brother to aid us in the war with those Indians. My plan is for the Militia of this Colony to attack the waco and Tawakany villageson the main brazos river at day light on the 25 of May and for the Cherokees Shawnees and Delawares to attack the Tawak[an]y village on the head of the Navisotabout 30 miles east of the Brazos at the same moment. As soon as the villages are destroyed, you will send a party in to the villages on the river to look for us and we will then make such arrangements as may be deemed necessary. It is my wish to distroy the Toweass villageon Red River before I return home and if you have men enough to spare to detach a party to attack that village at the same time we attack the others it would be best, to do so. If this cannot be done bring all your men to the Tawakanies and we will fit out a party to attack the Toweass—My friends I have informed you of my plans I have placed great confidence in you for you are the only persons out of this Colony that I have called on for aid—I am the friend of the cherokees, and wish to give them an opportunity of shewing the Government what good soldiers and faithful citizens they will make and I have no doubt if you turn out in this expedition and distroy the Tawakany village on the head of the Navisot, that it will be the means of securing you land in the country for as many of your Nation as wish to remove here—I have no authority to promise you land, but I will promise my aid and friendship in your favor with the Government and I have no doubt of succeeding, but you must first show the Government that you are both able and willing to fight for them. I will also befriend the Shawnees and Delawares. Some of them may know me My father has had hundreds of them at his home at the Lead Mines in Missouri, he was a short fat man and lived at a place called Mine á Burton, he traded with the Shawnees and Delawares and was their friend I was then a little boy and have often played with the Shawnee children—we are now men and let us fight in union and together as we used to play—

The bearer of this is Mr John R, Foster I have sent him express to see you and wish you to write me a positive answer by him wheither you will join us in this war and wheither you will attack [the] Tawakany villageon the head of the Navisot at the time appointed. And how many men you can furnish

I wish you to keep the business a profound secret from the Keechies. Ananies and all those small tribes—They are bad Indians and are at war with the mexicans and friendly with the Tawakanies. also keep it a secret from the Americans and Spaniards for some of them might give our enemies notice My men on the Colorado killed eleven Tawakanies and two Keechis on the 3d day of this month— they came into the settlement to steal horses—

I wish you to send me an express to the home of John P Coles ten miles below the San Antonio road on the east side of the Brazos river to inform me when you start on the expedition and how many men you will take so that I may know to a certainty how to make my arrangements

Your friend and Brother, S. F. A.

San Felipe de Austin April 24, 1826—-