Telegraph and Texas Register (Houston, Tex.), Vol. 2, No. 15, Ed. 1, Tuesday, May 2, 1837 Page: 1 of 4
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VOIi. II. NO. 15.
WE LABOR FOR OUR COUNTRY,
WHOXilE NUMBER 67.
PUBLISHED BY BORDEN & MOORE,;
TERMS, $5 PER ANN., IN ADVANCE
ADVERTISING, USUAL PRICES.
HOUSTON, TUESDAY, MAY 2, "1837.
TRANSLATION OF THE LAWS, ORDERS AND CONTRACTS OF COLONIZA-
TION, from 1821, up to 1829; in virbue of which
COL.. STEPHEN F. AUSTIN INTRODUCED AND SETTLED
FOREIGN EMIGRANTS IN TEXAS.
TNo. 8.1 (Decree of the Emperor.) e.
L J Mexico, February 18, 1823.
Having rendered an account to his majesty of the subject,
on which the council has given the foregoing opinion, he has
thought proper to resolve, in conformity therewith; and conse-
quently declares, In the first place, that Austin was not officially
authorized to stipulate with the emigrants what quantity of land
they should receive in the new settlement, and therefore they
are subject to the regulations of the government, agreeably to
the law on that point; and consequently in virtue of said law,
there shall be granted to each head of a family, one labor or one
league, agreeably to the occupation which he may profess; of-
fering to augment the quantity of land, for all those who may-
have a numerous family, or who may merit such augmentation,
by the establishment of a new species of industry, or by the
perfection of those already known, or by other circumstances,
which may be useful to the province, or to the empire, it being
understood, that to the colonist, who besides farming, also dedi-
cates himself to the raising of stock, there may, be granted a
league and a labor, in conformity with the oth article ol said
law. As respects the designation of boundaries for the new es-
tablishment, with the limits described by Austin in his memorial,
it is declared to be inadmissible, for the reasons given by the
In the second place, Austin is authorized, in union with the
governor of Texas, or a commissioner appointed by the latter,
to proceed to divide and designate lana, and put each of the
new colonists in possession of the quantity above indicated, and
issue to them the titles in the name of the government. A cer-
tified copy of which shall be transmitted to the governor, for the
purpose connected with the subject.
In the third place, all the families over and above the said
three hundred, who come to settle in Texas, must establish them-
selves in the interior of the province, adjacent to the ancient
settlements, in the manner prescribed by the colonization
In the fourth place, and in conformity with the said coloni-
zation law, there is granted to Austin, for the expenses which he
has been at, a quantity of land in proportion to his families,
agreeably to the provisions of the 19th article of said law, and
under the conditions contained in said article.
In the fifth place, Austin is authorized to proceed in confor-
mity with said law, to form a town, with the families who have
emigrated, or may emigrate, to the number of the three hundred
of the permission, at the most suitable place in the section of
country which they at present occupy, taking care that it shall
be as central as possible, to the lands distributed to the colonists,
who must accredit that they are Roman apostolic catholics, and
Of steadv habits. It being understood that the governor of
Texas, or his commissioner, in union with Austin, can designate
the place, and measure out the land for the establishment of
said town; selling the building lots, at the price to be regulated
by appraisers, the other particulars embraced under this head,
which were petitioned for by Austin, are granted ; the governor
of Texas is required to give information, of whatever may be
necessary for the regulation of the government of said town,
' -and that both it, and any others that are founded, may be fur-
nished with spiritual pastors.
As regards the citizenship which Austin solicits, he is noti-
fied to apply to the Junta Nacional Instituyente, whose province
it is to grant it.
And finally, he is authorised to organize the colonists into
a body of national militia, to preserve tranquility, rendering an
account of all to the governor of Texas, and actidg under his
orders, and those of the captain general of the province; also,
until the government of the settlement is organized, he is charg-
(c.) After the passage of the colonization law, by the Junta Insti-
tuyente, the memorial which Austin presented to congress, soon after
his arrival in Mexico, was referred to the imperial council of state, to-
gether with all the documents on the subject, who gave their opinion or
advice, on which the above decree of the emperor was issued. It is not
considered important to translate the whole of said opinion, for its sub-
stance is copied, in the emperor's decree. Tho first part of it is as
"The council of state in session, on the 14th of January, 1823, has
examined the documents relative to the establishment of 300 Louisiana
families, in the province of Texas, by Don Stephen F. Austin. His me-
morial on the subject, embraces various points; the first is, that the go-
vernment confirm to the emigrants, the quantity of land promised by
him to the settlers, and that the limits of the establishment, should be
-fixed as petitioned for, in his memorial. The council are of opinion
that Austin was not sufficiently authorized to stipulate with the emi-
grants, the quantity of land which they should receive in the new set-
tlement; and consequently that they are subject to the regulations of
the government, agreeably to the law on that point; and besides; the
10th article of the colonization law, prescribes that all matters on this
subject, which might be pending, although they may have been
-commenced under the former government, shall be-regulated by that
law; and the 8th article of said law prescribes, &c. Here the coun-
cil states the substance of the 8th and 9th articles of the said law, and
advises the emperor to order the distribution of land to the settlers, in
conformity thereto. As regards the limits of the colony, the council
say, "with respect to the demarcation of the limits for the new esta-
blishment, described by Austin in his memorial, the council are of opi-
nion that it need not be granted, because there is -not sufficient data, to
ascertain the extent of territory embraced by said limits, and also, be-
cause there is no motive or necessity for such demarcation, for the colo-
ny will, of course, be composed of the lands, granted in full property to
(d.) Austin petitioned for authority to introduce and settle, an ad-
ditional number of emigrants, besides tne three hundred: the substance
of the opinion given by the council, on thjp point, is, that it would be ex-
pedient to make such an additional, or new contract with Austin, pro-
vided, such new emigrants settled in the interior of Texas, and in the
immediate neighborhood of the old settlements of that province, retired
from the eastern frontier, but not otherwise.
ed with the administration of justice, settling all difference which catcd to him, he shall proceed to organize said establishment:
may arise among the inhabitants, and preserving good order and which I communicate to you for your information, in order that
tranquillity; rendering an account to the government of any in accord with said commissioner, you may appoint a day-for
remarkable event that may occur. ' jour departure from this place, and inform me thereof, that 1 may
ANDRES QUINTANA. have the escort ready to accompany you. God and Liberty.
Copy of the fifth article of the memorial of Stephen F. Austin, Bexar, 28th July, 1823.
relative to colonization in the province of Texas, which LUCIANO GARCIA.
was granted in the manner stated in the foregoing decree: ' -
That authority be granted to him, to found one or more No. 15. Official letter from governor Garcia, to the commts-
towns, at such points as he may deem most proper, within the sioncr Bastrop, naming the town of San Felipe dcArastmr.
limits designated, and to take for himself, and for his family, suf- Under date of the 22d insi., I reported to the commandant
ficient lots for their uses, and with power to grant lots to useful general of these provinces as follows:
mechanics, gratis; but that all others should pay for them, at the "In virtue of your official communication of the 16th ulti-
price the government may think proper to establish; the pro mo, transmitting to mo the documents relative to the colonial es-
ceeds ot which shall be applied to the building ot a church, and ,raoiisnment, lormmg in tins province, oy uon dicpnen x. aus-
nther establishments of public utility.
I certify the above to be a copy from the original.
MIGUEL R1ESGO, Official Primero.
Mexico, 18th Feb., 1823.
tin, of three hundred families, the receipt of which I acknow
ledged, by nry letter of the 9th instant I have commissioned
the second alcalde of this city, Baron De Bastrop, on account of
his geographical Knowledge, and his understanding the English
language, to proceed to the organization of said establishment,
No.ll. Decree of the Sovenign Congress jm conformity with the aforementioned documents on thesubject,
Most excellent Sir. Having seen the reasons which the, and with such instructions as it may hereafter be necessary to
empresario, S. F. Austin has given in his last representation, give him; and also to lay out the town, and survey the lands
praying that tho concession made to him, by the late govern-1 for lots, farms, and stock farms. The name which I have given
ment, for the establishment of three hundred families in Texas, ! to the town, but subject to your determination, is San Felipe de
should be confirmed. The sovereign constituent congress have
thought proper to resolve, that the said petition should be trans-
mitted to the .executive, in order, that should it have no objec-
tions, it may grant this petition, and any others of the same
kind; also, the sovereign congress have determined, that here-
after, the colonization law, passed by the Junta Instituyente,
shall be suspended unfil a new resolution on the subject. And
by order of the sovereign congress, we communicate this to your
excellency, accompanied by the said petition. God preserve
your excellency many yeais. Mexico, 11th April, 1823.
FLOREN TIN O M ART1N EZ,
Member and Secretary.
JOSE MARIA SANCHEZ,
Member and Secretary.
To his excellency, the minister of inteiior and exterior relations.
No. 12. Decree of the Supreme Executive Power.
Mexico, 14th April, 1S23.
Having seen the new representation of Stephen F. Austin,
praying for a confirmation of the concession granted to him by
the late government, by its decree of 18lh February last, relative
to colonization in the province of Texas; and finding it to be in
conformity with the law passed on the subject, by the Junta na-
cional instituyente; the supreme executive power have thought
proper to confirm the said concession, and order that the corres-
ponding title should be given to the interested person, and that
the resolution should be communicated to the commandant ge-
neral of the internal provinces, and to the governor of the pro-
vince of Texas, for their information and the corresponding ef-
fects. JOSE IGNACIO GARCIA ILLUECA,
Minister of relations.
No. 14. Commission of the. Baron de Bastrop.
San Fernando de Bexar, Kith July, 1S23.
Inasmuch as the more important attentions of government,
prevent my executing in person, the various duties connected
with the colonial establishment forming by Stephen F. Austin,
and using the power granted tcme by the laws, and in obedience
to the decree of the commandant geneial of these provinces,
brigadier Don Felipe ce la Garza, dated lGth June last past.
(c.) I have thought proper to appoint, and by these presents, do
appoint the second alcalde of this city, the Baron de Bastrop,
commissioner, giving to him all legal powers, to proceed to the
district of the Colorado and the Brazos, to organize that esta-
blishment, in conformity with the decrees on the subject, and
such instructions as I may communicate: a certified copy of
which is herewith delivered to him, in order that in continuation
he may proceed to discharge the duties which may be necessary,
transmitting a statement of his proceedings when they arc finish-
ed, to this government, for the purposes which may be neces-
sary. Thus, I, Luciano Garcia, lieutenant colonel of cavalry of
New Santender, and governor pro tern., of this prownce, order
and command, signing the present with assisting witnesses, for
the want of a notary public, as the law requires; to which I
Assisting witnesses. Jose Antonio Sauccdo, and Uario de
Official letter from governor Garcia, to S. F. Austin, on the same
As the more important attentions of the government, ore-
vent my going on personally to organize the colonial establish-
ment, forming by you in this province, I have thought proper
to commission, with all necessary powers, the second alcalde of
this city, Baron de Bastrop, who has been selected on acrnnnf
of his well known and superior qualifications, in order that in
conformity with the decrees on the subject, and the colonization
law; copies of all which I have delivered, to him, and also in
conformity with such instructions as may in future be communi-
(e) The decree of the commandant fronnral refnrrpd tr, ic ,; of
ficial communication, at the end of the document on thP ni.i'vt bin
ding the consultation made by Austin to him, and the proceedings of
mo uujuuuiuh uiuruon, muniioncci m ttic Mth page ot the introduction.
The commandant general at the close savs. "A certified mnv of ul.irh
shall be delivered to Austin for his government, and the original shall 1 e
transmitted to the Governor of Texas, who will appoint die commissioner
mentioned in the decree of ISthFcbruarv 1823: and sec that said colo-
nial establishment i farmed in the inimicr therein directed."
Austin, and for its greater formality, should you deem it neces
sary, 1 wish the corresponding approval transmitted to me, in
order that the commissioner may proceed to execute what may
Which I transcribe to you for your information, accompa-
nied with a copy of the colonization law, in order that, in the
discharge of your commission, you will be governed by it, and
by the decrees which I have already communicated to you, as
also by such instructions as may be necessary to give. You will
therefore inform me of the day fixed for your departure, in or-
der that the escort of soldiers, who are to accompany you, may
be ready. God and Liberty.
Bczar, 2Gth July, 1S23.
No. 10. Official letter of the Commissioner Bastrop, to James
Cummings, provisional alcalde, on the Colorado.
The governor pro tern, of t! is province, lieutenant colonel
Don Luciano Garcia, under date of the 16th of last month
says tome, as follows: .
"The commandant general of these provinces, brigadier '
don Felipe de la Garza, under date of the IGth June, last past,
says to me as follows:
1 transmit to you the documents relative to the colonial es--tablishmenr,
which Don Stephen F. Austin, is permitted to fcrm
in that province, in order, that on your part, you give due com-
pliance to the decree of the last government, dated 18th Febru-
ary last past, resanclioned by the present government, on the
14th April, and by me, under this date. You will use all possi-
ble efforts to complete the organization of said establishment;
charging the commissioner who may be appointed by you, to be
expeditious in concluding his duties, and that he make frequent
reports of his progress, in order that you may do the same to me,
and on its conclusion, you will inform me thereof."
"And I transcribe it to you for your information, and that
in virtue of the commission which I have conferred upon you,
by my decree of this date, you will proceed in company with
said Austin, to organize the colonial establishment which the
government has granted to l.im in this proince, for three hun
dred Louisiana families. You will be governed in all things by
the decrees and orders contained in the certified copy of them,
which I have delivered to you, and by such other instructions as
it may be necessary to communicate to you, until said establish-
ment is organized, and ayuntamientos are established at the
places where they may be necessary. The said Don Stephen
F.Austin is authorized by the government, to administer justice
in that district, and to form a regiment of national militia, over
which, for the present, he must be the 'chief, with the rank -of
lieutenant colonel; all of which you will make known to the
inhabitants of said district, in order that they may recognize the
said Austin, invested with said powers, and obey whatever he
may order, relative to the public service of the country, the pre-
servation of good order, and the defence of the nation to which
And 1 transcribe it to you for your information, and strict
compliance on your part; notifying you, that on Saturday, the
9th instant, you will collect as many of the inhabitants of the
district, under your charge, as you can, at the house of Sylvenus
Castleman, fhat I may communicate to them the superior orders
with which I am charged, and that said Don Stephen F. Austin,
may be recognized by the civil and military authorities depend-
ant on him, and by the new colonists who arc under his charge.
God preserve you many years. At Castleman's, August 5th,
EL BARON DE BASTROP.
No. 17. Official letter from Jose Antonio Sauccdo, political chief
of Texas, to Austin.
Under this dale, 1 have transmitted to the alcaldes of the
Colorado and Brazos, the following order:
"The Baron de Bastrop, the commissioner of this govern
ment, proceeds to that district, to put the inhabitants, establish-
ed in it, in possession of their lands, agreeably to law, and to is-
sue to them the (orrcsponding titles for their security, so soon as
they pay the fees established by the fee bill, which I circulated
when I was at that point; which I communicate to you for your
information, and m order that there may be no delay in the orga-
nization of that cstablishmcn(,you will notify all the inhabitants
who wish to settle in it, that they must positively assemble on
the day, and at the place fixed, by said commissioner, to put
them in possesion of their lands, and issue the titles therefor.
And you will make the corresponding report of the receipt and
execution of this order."
Which I communicate to you for your information and ne-
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Borden & Moore. Telegraph and Texas Register (Houston, Tex.), Vol. 2, No. 15, Ed. 1, Tuesday, May 2, 1837, newspaper, May 2, 1837; Houston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth47928/m1/1/: accessed January 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting The Dolph Briscoe Center for American History.