Stephen F Austin to Henry Austin, 04-19-1833

Summary: Approves application for organization of Texas as a State, and thinks must proceed to organize anyway if petition is refused. Report that Government is sending army to Texas to keep it from revolting from Mexico. This very objectionable.

Copy of a letter from Stephen F Austin to Capt. Henry Austin

Dated San Felipe de Austin April 19th 1833 :

To Capt. H Austin

Dear Sir—I leave to-morrow for Mexico on the state Government mission— I go with considerable—I may say—strong hopes of success— The course taken by the convention, is the true one I think— The memorial for admission as a state is respectfully [sic] and dignified and based upon the law of the 7th May 1824. and I can see no just reason why any offence should be taken [to] it by the Government, nor why it should be refused— Texas can not do any longer without a Government—things have been so disjointed ever since the military authority began to interfere with the civil, and with citizens, that nothing can set them to rights again but a state Government— I approve fully of the application for admission as a state and I think it will succeed— The consequence of a failure will no doubt be war—

Texas can not evidently get a[lo]ng without a Govt, and if there should be no means of obtaining one with the approbation of congress she must form one of herself in the best way she can. I have always been opposed to hasty and imprudent measure but if our application fails, I shall say we have exhausted the subject so far as it can be done by mild steps, and that a totally different course ought to be adopted, for we can then take a firm stand for rights that were respectfully petitioned for and unjustly detained— The sum and substance of the whole matter is that Texas must have a state Government nothing else will quiet this country or give any security to persons or property, and nothing else will be agreed to [by] me as the representative of the public wishes— I think I shall succeed— I was opposed to putting our Govt, into operation until we first obtained the sanction of congress Such a step could not have been justified on solid grounds, but if after our application we get no remedy, I shall advise an immediate organization under the law of 7th May 1824, and a second application for admission, as organized— That also failing we shall have to do the best we can—I say that I shall advise this—I mean in case the situation of the country continues to be as it now is—for at this time we are in anarchy and there will be no middle course left between total ruin and an immediate organization—if our application should fail—

There is a rumor, and it appears to be well founded, that the most of the army are to be sent to Texas, for the purpose of getting them out of the way so as to prevent future revolutions in Mexico—it is said they are not sent with any unfriendly feelings to the people of Texas &c— This is what letters from Mexico say. now if a considerable army is sent here, no matter with what feelings the result will be a collission—that is if they attempt to Govern in a military way In this event the whole country ought to unite at once and expel or kill the whole of them—- It is not a correct or a sound course of policy for the Govt, to make Texas the recepticle of her disorderly troops— But every care and prudent step should be adopted to avoid any collission, and the first aggression must not be on the part of the people—and above all things there must be no opposition to the collection of duties, for that is a right which the Govt, has— Let us violate no law—nor any just rights of the nation and adhere closely to the principle of seeking a peaceable remedy, that failing—-I am then ready for war or any thing— So soon as I am convinced that there is no hope of success I shall return as quick as possible by water—I will try and keep the troops away if possible— No man in Texas has been more in favor of peace than I have—

The old settlers and all persons will suffer much by a revolution, or a war—but if there is no other remedy, I am for going into it fully, and united, make a business of that at once— I however think there is no danger— I believe we shall be admitted as a state and that all will go on smoothly

This is my last effort to serve Texas, if I succeed I shall be happy, and will try to enjoy some comfort in future and have nothing to do with politics or public business— If however I fail, and war is the result, I will take a hand in that, and enter the ranks as a soldier of Texas

I pay my own expenses, and expect the trip will be costly—but I do it freely and cheerfully and shall consider the money and labor better employed than any I ever spent in my life— Please remember me to Doct. Phelps and family, Hall, and all your neighbors and assure them that no effort shall be spared on my part to get a state Govt, and to keep away war and revolution from Texas— but if they must come, I will take my full share and stand by the settlers to the last— Love to your dear children and may heaven bless you all— Affectionately your cousinS F A