J.E.B. Austin to Stephen F. Austin, 10-10-1826

Summary: Leaving Saltillo. Favorable attitude of legislature toward slavery. Friends of the colony.

Dr Brother,Saltill° 0ct 10th 1826

I wrote you two or three days since and calculated before this to have been in or near Monterrey but last evening I received inteli- gence that a band of Robbers had stationed themselves on the road to attack the Americans who might be returning to Refugio from the fair and what americans are in this place have concluded to join together for their mutual defense—We certainly start the day after tomorrow—- have this moment taken my leave of the members of the Legislature—they have assured me to dispel all doubts relative to the 13 Art.—The representation you made on the subject appeared so just and well founded that the Author of the Article himself (Carrillo) asked permission to withdraw it—I think the children born after the publication of the Constitution will not be freed under fourteen: Several of the members since I have proposed it, are inclined not to free them under the age of 25 or 21-—the arguments and reasons adduced by myself to convince them of the justice and necessity of this law are to lengthy to insert in this communication but the principle was the advantage that would result to the slave as well as to the Public to be freed at that age possessed of some useful branch of industry whereby they might gain a livelihood—instead of becoming vagabonds and [illegible] ; without any certain way of procuring the necessaries of life except in a dishonest manner—which must be the case if they are freed at 14. after that age they are compelled to stay no longer with their masters unless they choose—At any rate it is presumable that no Master will maintain a large family of young Negroes a term of years without receiving some compensation for it—and I say for the trouble and expence the master is at to maintain them from the time they are born untill they are 14— let the slave serve a few years to recompense them—after that he can be freed possessing health, strength; and Means to support himself without being a Public pest and continually a subject of correction

I have stated every reason that I can invent—to try and procure this last clause as favourable as possible—I am confident if I had not arrived here, the children would have been declared free from their birth—and if the Art is passed—extending the period of Emancipation to 14—21—or 25—I shall flatter myself as contributing in a small degree in obtaining it—

Since my last to you I have had much conversation (reserved) with Padilla relative to your situation—and touching the subjects generally you have addressed him upon—

he is your warm and disinterested friend—he informs me that he is afraid at present to do much on the various points you have been so frank as to submit to his consideration—because he has no confidence in the members composing the Legislature except the Baron and one or two others the ballance I may say are bought by Carrillo- he says have patience—as soon as the new Legislature takes its seat- he will present the points you wish granted and has no doubt of sue- cess in the mean time lie says you can present any thing else that you wish—and consider him as your legal agent in all yr transactions with Govt

Saucedo is also yr. warm friend you must cultivate the same friendship for him that has always existed— If he is appointed the Commissioner to pass to the frontier I expect Arcinega will be appointed his Secretary— No doubt you will receive the appointment of Gefe Subalterno— This is proof that the Govr has a friendly disposition towards you, As to Gains he is so Contemptious that I have declined makeing any representation to the Gov on paper— I have conversed with all the Members respecting him— and referred them to the Baron— When the subject comes before the house— I shall not be surprised if those letters be the cause of his expulsion from the Country

The English have left no method untryed but on the contrary have used every exertion to induce the Genl Govt to regard the Americans with jealousy and suspicion— They have used all their intrigue and influence to injure the Character of the Americans and many representations have been made in Mexico against Amern Emigration but the Govt, attributed it to Ambition and that natural antipathy the English possess towards us— Respects to all friends the Barron and Padilla wish to be remerd—

Jas B Austin [Rubric]

P. S. I have just seen the Comt Genl he appeared glad to see me and wishes me to remember him to you he also observed that he hoped to give you u un Abrazo " between this and next fall, he says " consider him as your friend, and old acquaintance " he also observed that you need have no trouble about the letters Gaines and Norris have been writing for men of that stamp are not calculated to injure you.

The Baron says twig old McFarlands memory about some bacon he was to have paid long since he wishes it delivered to the order of La Baum

Jas B. Austin

Take good care of my horse

[Endorsed:] Saltillo Octr 10 1826

[Addressed:] Al Ciudado Tente Cor1- Estevan F Austin en la Villa de San Felipe de Austin.