James Norton to Stephen F. Austin, 10-15-1825

Summary: Intention to move to Texas. Abusive publications against Austin.

New Orleans 15th October 1825

Dear Sir

Since my first acquaintance with you in this city, I have had the desire to emigrate to your colony; but circumstances of a private nature, and some pecuniary embarrassments, have hitherto precluded it. Moreover, not having, had the pleasure of an interview, or even of correspondence with you, I have been deterred by what, I have always denounced as falsehood and detraction. Capt. Zepeniah Butler, with whom I went to the river Brassos, has expressed his wish to become a citizen, from the just motives, which have ever influenced me in regard to your character as a gentleman, and your justice, as an officer of the government; and not only, that; (though a primary consideration) but the excellent quality of the soil, on which your colony is founded.

I perceive however, not withstanding your justice, and judgement in managing the local affairs of your colony, some difficulties will arise among the evil disposed, which being transported into other communities abroad, tend, (though but partially) I hope, (to injure your rising prosperity), and that of your great, and arduous undertaking.

I mean, if possible, to visit next summer the settlement, which you have spent so much time, and money to establish, and flatter myself, that, I shall find, that it even exceeds in every thing my most sanguine expectations: but before that time, I sincerely solicit you to write me, and transmit whatever inteligence you may deem proper to communicate, or entrust to one, of whom you have had so short an acquaintance.

I forbear to write any thing relative to the abusive and vindictive publications of a certain individual, as the papers containing them will be handed to you by Capt. J. T. Field, who is the bearer of this: they are relative to the abuse of the Buen gobierno del establecimiento.

James Norton.

[Addressed:] Colo Stephen F. Austin San Philipe De Austin Texas U. M. S.