Stephen F Austin to Henry Austin, 01-07-1835

Summary: Favoring declaration of independence and explaining apparent inconsistency

Dear HenryMr Ware is not in the city—he is some where in the state of Mississippi— I will leave your letter for him with Mr A. Hodge president of the Orleans Bank— There is great enthusiasm in favor of Texas in this city, and all over the U. S.—a thousand fold more than I had any idea of— The universal opinion seems to be that, we ought to declare Independence immediately—it will give us the aid of men of capital and high standing and character who wish for a more extensive field, than a mere party war in Texas— My own feelings and impulses inclined me to this course long ago and especially when I left San Felipe— What I said to the provisional Govt, on the 30th. November and 2d December indicates my feelings plain enough— It was unfortunate that I came on by water— I should have arrived sooner by land, and I could not have gone to the lower country, where the warm and even violent feelings of some of my friends did at that time to a certain extent prcipitate me into party feelings—a thing I have always tryed to avoid—

I am now acting and in future shall act on my own impulses, for I have generally found them to be correct— I go for Independence for I have no doubt we shall get aid, as much as we need and perhaps more—and what is of equal importance—the information from Mexico up to late in December says that the Federal party has united with Santa Anna against us, owing to what has already been said and done in Texas in favor of Independence so that our present position under the constitution of 1824, does us no good with the Federalists, and is doing us harm in this country, by keeping away the kind of men we most need— were I in the convention I would urge an immediate declaration of Independence—unless there should be some news from the interior that changed the face of things—and even then, it would require very strong reasons to prevent me from the course I now recommend— I wish you to inform McKinny and Jack etc of the contents of this letter—that is of such parts of it as you think proper—and I advise you to take an open and bold stand for Independence at once— I hope all my friends will do the same—and that the Question will be decided unanimously— as I before observed I am informed that the Federal Party have done nothing for us—and will do nothing—if so it is a folly to maintain our present position any longer—

S. F. Austin

New Orleans, January 7, 1836.