The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937 Page: 45
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The Mercer Colony in Texas, 1844-1883
Boarding at the same house in Washington with Mercer, while
he was negotiating with President Houston for the colony con-
tract, was P. J. Pillans of Bonham, Texas. Mercer engaged him
on January 30, 1844, as agent in charge of surveys and such
other matters in connection with the colony as might become nec-
essary. Mercer supplied him with funds and authorized him to
draw on Lindenberger and Company of New Orleans for what
more he might need.
Having purchased the necessary outfit, Pillans went to Bonham,
where he made his headquarters. He employed William Hunt, a
surveyor of Fannin County, Claxton Taylor, and Thomas C.
Bean as surveyors to survey the outside boundaries and to sub-
divide the land.' Mercer also contracted with Dr. Daniel Rowlett
to act as sub-agent with full powers of chief agent, February 4,
1844. These agents set to work2 immediately employing surveyors
and personally supervising their work.
With Rowlett and Pillans in charge of surveying the colony,
Mercer returned to the United States, February 10, 1844, to
organize an association for financing and promoting his contract.
Upon his arrival he immediately published handbills explaining
the terms of colonization and had copies of his contract printed.3
He organized a company named "The Texas Association," the
members of which bought shares at five hundred dollars each. In
his first semi-annual report it appeared that shareholders of his
association were from Texas, Virginia, and Florida and that their
shares varied from one-half to five shares.4
'Deposition of P. J. Pillans, May 25, 1880 (surveyor for Mercer's
Colony, April, 1844-May, 1845), in the case styled Preston vs. Walsh, 109
U. S. 297 (1883). The records of the case are on file in the Internal
Revenue Building at Austin, Texas. See also Mercer to Anson Jones,
March 31, 1845. Colonization Papers, 1843-1845. Texas State Library.
"Mercer to Anson Jones, March 31, 1845. Colonization Papers, 1843-
1845. Texas State Library.
sMercer to Anson Jones, March 31, 1845. Colonization Papers, 1843-
1845. Texas State Library.
4Colonization Papers, 1843-1845. Texas State Library.
According to a letter received May 23, 1935, by the writer from Miss
Edna J. Granman, Head of the Reference Department of the Louisville
Free Public Library, "The Minutes of The Texas Association" are on file
in the Louisville Free Public Library of Louisville, Kentucky. Besides
containing a record of the Meetings of the stockholders of "The Texas
Association," "The Minutes of The Texas Association" contain contracts
with the Republic of Texas, with the agents, surveyors, and associates
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 40, July 1936 - April, 1937, periodical, 1937; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101099/m1/53/: accessed October 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.