The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 10, July 1906 - April, 1907 Page: 171
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The Seat of Government of Texas.
was far enough advanced to accommodate Congress and the heads
of departments. Accordingly, on May 1st, the adjourned session
of the First Congress met in the respective chambers,1 "fitted up
and furnished for business."
The last statement-"fitted up and furnished for business"-
must be considerably qualified, else the reader will be misled. For
instance, J. J. Audubon notes in his diary on May 4, 1837:
Meanwhile, we amused ourselves by walking in the capitol, which
was yet without a roof, and the floors, benches, and tables of both
houses of congress were as well saturated with water as our clothes
had been in the morning.2
Again, the official record of the proceedings of the house of rep-
resentatives for May 10, 1837, says: "The members assembled ac-
cording to adjournment, but owing to the storm of the preceding
night, and the insufficiency of the building, the floor being flooded
with water, and the hall unfit for the transaction of business, on
motion, adjourned until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock." May
15, an effort was made in the senate to have a special committee ap-
pointed "to obtain a room for the senate to meet in the present
session."4 And on May 20, a motion was made in the house to have
Major Ward, the contractor, discontinue "such labor on this house
as disturbs the deliberations of congress during the hours of its
Nor was congress worse situated than the various departments
of the executive. Neither was the want of accommodation expe-
rienced alone in the transaction of official business. The new city
did not possess the conveniences required by the members of con-
gress and the visitors who had business with the government. The
discomforts that resulted from this situation, together with the
dissatisfaction over the original choice of Houston that still lurked
in many minds, presented a source of discontent and a fruitful
soil for all sorts of plans in regard to the future location of the
seat of government. The consideration of these plans will form
the subject of a subsequent paper.
'House Journal, 1 Tex. Cong., 2 Sess., 1; Senate Journal, 1 Tex. Cong.,
'Quoted by Lubbock, in his Memoirs, 53.
'House Journal, 1 Tex. Cong., 2 Sess., 20.
'Senate Journal, 1 Tex. Cong., 2 Sess., 10.
'House Journal, 1 Tex. Cong., 2 Sess., 51.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 10, July 1906 - April, 1907, periodical, 1907; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101040/m1/191/: accessed June 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.