Stephen F Austin to Emily M Perry, 01-26-1833

Summary: Payment of old debts. His estimate of his work: "The settlers of this colony will never forget me nor be long ungrateful to me."

Jany 26 1833

Dr Sister,

I recd yours of 20— I scarcely know what to do as to the Little rock business. The whole truth as it and other matters [stand] is as follows— I bought a large amt of new madrid claims of G. Tennelle for which I gave him my notes—one of those claims was laid on Little Rock in company with O'Hara— I sold all the claims to Bryan and gave him a deed— I took an instrument from him by which he agreed to pay Tennelle—that paper I left in his desk at long Prairie as I had no safe place to keep it, and it disappeared so that I never saw it again— he transfered the claims to H. Elliott and there is nothing to show that there was any agreement between them— Ashly no doubt knows all about it and if he is an honest man will settle the business right—-if he is not, it will be difficult to do anything with it. I have paid Tennell over seven thousand dollars, I think,—also I have paid Butler about six thousand dolls, all within two years or nearly all— It will take about $4000 more to clear me of debt— I have directed John Austin to sell land for what it will bring to raise $1600 for Hunter balance due on what was paid Tennelle out of the store— I did not wish to sacrifice land for I wanted to give a large tract to each of your children—but it is all a folly I am only worrying myself to death

I certainly thought and now think that your removal to Texas will make your children all independent which they would never have been in Missouri— * * * I have been offered 5 dolls an acre for 1000 acres joining Perry and I could get 8 by giving a credit on a part—but I wished to go there and live along side of you. If however you are always holding up the dark side of the picture to me, I fear that all my prospects of comfort will be ideal. * * * The tracts you now live on will make as good a farm or plantation as any in Texas— It has a good situation on the river also—is in a good neighborhood—convenient to the sea, to the river, to market will do for stock and planting—takes in part of jones Creek—has plenty of timber and prairie I always wanted Mr Perry to settle there, but could not get him to go and look at it— The place on Chocolate will always be a good stock farm and may be kept up I do not see that you have had more trouble [or] even as much as most of the settlers in Texas—A new country cannot be settled without trouble

As to the settlers being ungrateful etc. which you speak of—all that is nothing— They are always in a fret about something—it is so all over the world—one day they curse and the next they praise. In the end they will be just and if I merit a reward from them, they will give it—

The settlers of this colony will never forget me nor be long ungrateful to me. Of this you need not have any doubt. A man who has no enemies is a contemptable being, for he is not of sufficient consequence to excite envy or jealousy so that you may set your mind at rest as to that matter— These settlers will never forget the man or the family who has made their fortunes. Cousin Henry ought never to have moved to Texas and I hope never to see another city raised family coming to this country—he has the foundation of a future laid, but I fear it will do him no good, I am surprised to hear you say that we shall never live to realize anything from my labors— Is it nothing to have paid off nearly all the old debts—to have given a credit to the name of my family by settling this colony that will be permanent and honorable for ages to come— Is it nothing that you are now permanently settled with the certainty that your children will not enter the world penniless— Is 5 dollars an acre for land nothing— a tract was sold a few days since near Perrys league west of the Bernard for 1.25 for acre, and not better land than his— you let trifles have too much influence on you— a punchin hut, or an indian camp is nothing, a mere trifle, when it is to be only a stepping place to get into a comfortable home and farm for life— If I had the power of a magician to build Palaces I would not do it, * * * but when I have done all I can, you ought to have more consideration for my feelings, when you know they are more sensative than they ought to be to get through this rough world— your brother