A new history of Texas for schools : also for general reading and for teachers preparing themselves for examination Page: 76 of 412
This book is part of the collection entitled: From Republic to State: Debates and Documents Relating to the Annexation of Texas, 1836-1856 and was provided to The Portal to Texas History by the UNT Libraries.
A FRIEND IN NEED.
Royalist party had triumphed; the officers were anxious
to do all in their power to induce good settlers to come
to Texas. In 1820, Austin arrived in San Antonio,
where he laid his petition for a grant of land before
Martinez (mar tee' neth), the governor of the province.
Instead of the kindness and encouragement he had hoped
to receive, Governor Martinez showed him only contempt
and suspicion. His petition was thrown aside, and he
was ordered to leave the province at once.
A Friend in Need.-With a heavy heart Austin left
the Governor's building, not knowing what fate might
befall him. Just then he happened to meet on the
Plaza Baron de Bastrop,* an officer of importance, whose
friendship he had won in New Orleans.
To him Austin confided everything. Bastrop proved
himself a true friend; through his influence the Gov-
ernor allowed Austin to remain in San Antonio, examined
of 55 he found himself a poor man, compelled to begin life anew. Then it was
that he resolved to go to Texas,- resolved upon the step with no spirit of wild ad-
venture, but with the cool, calm decision of a man of judgment and experience.
As the United States had recently given up all claim to Texas, Spain felt safe
in allowing Americans more freedom to settle within her territory. She was in
fact anxious to secure good colonists, for she felt that her efforts to people Texas
had sadly failed. Austin, knowing all this, thought that the time was suitable
for his plans; he had this advantage, he knew much of Spanish laws and Spanish
customs; and he was fortunate enough to possess a passport given to him by
the Spanish authorities when he settled in Missouri.
* Baron de Bastrop, a Prussian by birth, served in his youth under Frederick
the Great. Entering the employ of the King of Spain, he was sent on an im-
portant mission to Mexico and became deeply interested in the country. He ob-
tained as a grant a tract of land (between the Mississippi and Red Rivers) 30
miles square, of which he ceded 400,000 acres to Aaron Burr. Years later, wheh
Louisiana again became the property of France, the Baron moved to San An-
tonio, where at the time of Austin's visit he held the position of Alcalde.
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Pennybacker, Anna J. Hardwicke. A new history of Texas for schools : also for general reading and for teachers preparing themselves for examination, book, 1895; Palestine, Tex.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth2388/m1/76/: accessed December 13, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .