The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 22, July 1918 - April, 1919 Page: 7
The following text was automatically extracted from the image on this page using optical character recognition software:
Stephen F. Austin
prospectors, sending expresses, giving presents to Indians, and
often furnishing munitions and supplies for Indian campaigns.'
Anticipating some of these expenses, and wishing also, naturally,
compensation for his industry and enterprise, Austin had, before
planting a single colonist, arranged, with the knowledge of Governor
Martinez, to collect 12 cents an acre for the land in his grant, as-
suming himself the cost of surveying land and of issuing and
recording titles. He advertised this in plain and unambiguous
terms, and the original settlers accepted it gladly, because else-
where in Texas they had no right to settle or acquire land at all.
The imperial colonization law of 1823, in accordance with whose
terms, after its repeal, Austin's grant was confirmed, greatly en-
larged the headrights which he had planned to allow settlers and
provided that he himself should receive as compensation for his
labors some 65,000 acres for each two hundred families that he in-
troduced. Whether this was intended to annul the 12f cent agree-
ment is open to question. Austin thought not, and so explained
on his return from Mexico in the summer of 1823. Where each
settler could have 4,600 acres for the asking, the empresario's
65,000 acres were not likely to yield much ready money for current
expenses. Nevertheless, some of the colonists now objected to
the payment and carried their complaint to the political chief,
who had replaced the governor at San Antonio, and he ruled against
Austin's right to charge for the lands. Instead, he fixed a scale
of fees for the surveyor, the land commissioner, and the state,
which Austin thought had no warrant in law. He contented him-
self, however, with making a straightforward defense of his reasons
for charging the fee, pointing out the risks, hardships, sacrifices,
and expenses he had suffered, and asking plainly if he had not given
in labor and responsibility the equivalent of the 121 cents an acre
which the colonists had agreed to pay him, or whether they could
or would have obtained anything, except through his exertions.
Many considered themselves in equity bound by their contracts,
one declaring that no candid man in the colony denied the obliga-
tion, but Austin relinquished them all and made an arrangement
with Bastrop for a division of the fee which the political chief had
1"For this paragraph see an article by the writer, "The Government of
Austin's Colony," in THE QUARTERLY, XXI, 223-252 (January, 1918).
Here’s what’s next.
This issue can be searched. Note: Results may vary based on the legibility of text within the document.
Tools / Downloads
Get a copy of this page or view the extracted text.
Citing and Sharing
Basic information for referencing this web page. We also provide extended guidance on usage rights, references, copying or embedding.
Reference the current page of this Periodical.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 22, July 1918 - April, 1919, periodical, 1919; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117156/m1/15/: accessed September 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.