Stephen F Austin to Josiah H Bell, 04-16-1829

Summary: Asks Bell to assist in preparing a list of settlers who have not obtained land titles. Object to show the land commissioner the importance of finishing that task, which his predecessors had generally imposed on Austin. Progress of subscription for the academy.

April 16—[1829]

Dr Sir,

I have not yet heard of the arrival of the comr at St Antonio, tho I expect he has arrived there, and I think it probable that he will be here some time next month—he will not be able to attend to business for some time after his arrival here—I shall advertise the time when he will be ready to receive applications, and it will be necessary for Mrs Powel to come up at that time

I find that it will be necessary for me to insist that the commissioner shall attend to the duties which the law requires him to attend to, and if he does so, I shall be totally relieved from the vexation of distributing land to the settlers, for the law imposes all that duty on the commissioner, but heretofore the comr imposed it all on me—he will be compelled to form some general rules on the subject and to follow them with very great rigor, or there will be much confusion. I wish to get a complete list of all those who have not yet recd land, in order to convince the commissioner of the necessity of his staying here untill the business is all finished, for if I do not do this, he will only remain a short time and leave me as the other commissioners have [be]fore the business is half finished—I have [asked] the favor of Mr Ingram to get a list of all in that section, and I must ask the favor of you to aid him in doing so—

Things are getting on better here, and there is some more harmony than there was— The people must be more particular in electing a man for Alcalde—If it will not injure you too much I think you ought to be the next Alcalde—-many persons speak of you—in fact I do not think there would be any opposition at all— I have been spoken to by many, and I wish to get that idea out of their heads, for I am compelled to visit the United States next fall, and I shall spend the season there— It will not do for me to be Alcalde— I have not the same patience that I once had— I have also other things to attend to of much more importance to the colony than settling little neighborhood disputes about cows and calves- There are some erronious impressions about the Ayuntamiento, amongst the settlers—those kind of impressions are very injurious and ought to be corrected—Mr Ingram can give you much information on [this?] and I will promptly afford all the information in my power to any one who will [write] me or take the trouble to inquire— Our Academy subscription goes on very well there is over 1300 dollars subscribed and I think we shall be able to get a brick building. I am anxious to see the matter succeed for I think it will be attended with much public good

I will be down and try and spend some time in that quarter after the commissioner arrives—

My respects to Mrs Bell S. F. Austin [Rubric]