The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 99, July 1995 - April, 1996 Page: 9
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1995 The Partnership of Stephen F. Austin and Joseph H. Hawkins
Oil portraits of Col. Joseph H. Hawkins and George Anne Nicholas Hawkins, at-
tributed to Matthew Harris Jouett. Jouett lived in Lexington, Kentucky, at the
same time that Stephen F. Austin attended Transylvania University there. Cour-
tesy Kentucky Museum, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky.
Letters written by Hawkins to Austin in early 1822 provide a glimpse
into how deeply Hawkins had invested his energy and his hopes-along
with his money-into the Texas colonization effort. Though an able
lawyer, Hawkins was never an astute businessman. He apparently spent
his last dime on Austin's venture and by the beginning of 1822 was
deeply in debt. "I am bent down almost to the very ground," Hawkins
wrote to Austin in February.
. . In fact my dear Sir I turn my mind towards you as the wrecked mariner does
towards the glimerings of the light house which promises a Haven of safety-
Were it not for you my path would now be cheerless if not hopeless.
If I could obtain through your efforts the means to pay my debts I would join
you immediately and spend my life in plowing the soil-and teaching our chil-
dren the ways of virtue.2'
Hawkins to Stephen F. Austin, Feb. 6, 1822, Austin Papers, I, pt. 1, pp. 476-478. In this same let-
ter (p. 476) Hawkins also mentions a fourth vessel: "Of the $7,ooo advanced for the Providence
I have not one cent return .. ." It is unclear whether the Providence was a ship carrying emigrants
to Texas, or if it was one of Hawkins's side-ventures. It is not mentioned in New Orleans shipping
records and no other references to it have been found.
20Joseph H. Hawkins to Stephen F. Austin, Feb. 6, 1822, Austin Papers, I, pt. 1, pp. 476 (quota-
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 99, July 1995 - April, 1996, periodical, 1996; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101217/m1/37/: accessed October 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.