Stephen F Austin to Mary Austin Holley, 04-20-1833
Summary: Texas petitions for organization as a State. People do not want to separate from Mexico, but anything preferable to present conditions.
[April 20, 1833.]
I do not know that, in the whole course of my life I have so
sensibly felt the extremes which ardent and sanguine temperaments
The calamity which Henry has suffered by the loss of his wife,
and by sickness is truly distressing. I am convinced from numerous
examples that persons raised in cities ought never to remove to a
new and thinly settled country. It is a total change of
a corresponding change of habits, ideas, and customs must take
place, or disappointment and discontent will surely follow. The
wild garb of nature may delight and enchant at first, because it
is new; the foliage the vines and the forest are pleasing images to
those who have always looked upon brick walls and paved streets,
but it is the pleasure of novelty and soon vanishes. Henry's health,
and that of his family have very much improved, and also his
spirits. I think, after this
Our political affairs have been somewhat agitated during the
determined to have one. We have lately had a Convention and asked of
the general Congress admission into the Mexican Confederacy as a
State separate from Coahuila. This request is accompanied by a
Constitution as an evidence that we wish for nothing contrary to the
National Constitution. I was appointed by the Convention to take
on our application for admission as a state; and depart tomorrow
morning on this responsible and important mission. I go by land,
and expect to be in the City of Mexico in about a month.
I have great confidence of success in procuring the approbation of
Congress to the measure. It was originally united to Coahuila
provisionally and the law that joined them says,
"So soon as Texas is
in a situation to figure as a State she shall inform Congress thereof for its resolution." So that we are acting by authority, and in virtue
of the express mandate of the law, for we only inform Congress that
we are in a situation contemplated by said law, as it requires us to do,
and ask for admission as such.
Should this application he refused it will be the greatest error
ever committed by the Mexican Government. Texas is now in the
budding, and impulsive vigor of youth, and a wise direction of its
Texas is determined to have a state
There is a decided opposition to seperating from the Mexican Confederacy. The people do not desire, and would not agree to it, if they could get a State Government, but anything would be better than to remain as we are, for we have no government that deserves the name of one.
If I succeed in this mission I intend it shall terminate my
participation in public matters. I have contributed very much to the
settling of the Country, and if I am now successful, I shall be
contented, and think I have done my part. Where, a few years since, the
primitive solitude of nature was undisturbed, a grand Theatre has
been erected. I have no desire to enter upon the stage as an actor.
But, I must confess, I have done calculating for the future.
Before this I fully expected to have been settled on my farm quite
snug and comfortable. Instead of which I am on the
twelve hundred miles, on a mules back (not a pegasus) over plains
and mountains, to the City of Montezuma, farther from all hopes of
farm and home than I ever was.
Henry informs me that you intend spending the
I hope to be back in