Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown. Page: 190 of 894
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INDIAN TVARS AND PIONEERS OF TEXAS.
IRA RANDOLPH LEWIS.
The subject of this sketch, Ira Randolph Lewis, t
was one of the patriots, who, as an associate of
Austin, Houston, Travis and their compeers, severed I
Texas from Mexico by the revolution of 1835-1836.
He was a prominent and distinguished lawyer and
political actor in those times. He was a delegate
from and represented the Municipality of Matagorda
in the convention of 1833, the first ever called by the
people of Texas, and of which Stephen F. Austin
was president and Frank W. Johnson secretary.
This convention set forth the grievances of the
colonists in Texas of Anglo-American origin, in a
paper of unparalleled strength, prepared by David
G. Burnet, and addressed to the Mexican government.
S. F. Austin, W. H. Wharton and J. B.
Miller were commissioned by the convention to present
this paper to the government of Mexico at the
city of Mexico. Wharton and Miller refused to go
and encounter the dangers incident to such a mission,
but Austin undertook the necessary task. His
imprisonment and sufferings in a Mexican dungeon
are matters familiar to every student of Texas
Again, in the consultation of 1835, Matagorda sent
Mr. Lewis to represent it, together with R. R.
Royal. What was done by these conventions is a
part of the history of Texas and the reader is
referred to volume one of Brown's History of
Texas, which gives in full the proceedings of both
He was again honored by being chosen a member
of the General Executive Council, consisting of
two members from each county, or municipality
as they were then called. The object of this council
was to assist the executive, Governor Smith. in
conducting the affairs of the Provisional Government.
While performing his duties in the Executive
Council in February, 1836, Governor Henry Smith
commissioned T. J. Chambers, with rank as General,
to go to the United States and enlist volunteer
soldiers and raise funds to aid Texas in her
struggle with Mexico. Chambers appointed Lewis
on his staff with rank of Colonel and, with Chambers'
indorsement and Governor Smith's written
permission, he left the council in the latter part of
February, 1836, and proceeded at once to the
Col. Lewis, in his capacity as Commissioner for
Texas, actively canvassed in rapid succession the
;owns and cities most accessible to him in those
days of the ox-cart, stage coach and river steamer.
But for this absence he would have participated in
the battle of San Jacinto.
On his return to Texas he made an official report
to the President of the Republic, who was Gen.
Sam Houston. The report is as follows:"To
the President of the Republic of Texas:
" In obedience to official duty and fbr the further
purpose of announcing to the proper authorities,'
for what otherwise might appear a wanton
absence from the country of my adoption during
her greatest difficulties, while in the United States
for the last ten months, I beg leave to communicate
the following information and.report, which your
Excellency will be pleased to receive and transmit
to the officer of the proper department where it
"On the 9th day of January, of the present
year, the then existing government of this Republic
passed a law authorizing T. J. Chambers,
Esq., to raise, arm, equip and command a division
as an auxiliary army for the defense of the cause
of Texas; the particulars of which will more fully
appear by reference to said law, a copy of which is
herewith transmitted and made a part of the report,
being marked No. 1; the original is on file in the
archives of this government.
"After Gen. Chambers was commissioned and
instructed to go to the United States to procure
men an(l means to constitute his division, and put
it in motion and serve in Texas, he offered me
an office on his staff as paymaster of said division,
which I accepted and was immediately commissioned
by the proper executive of this government,
a copy of which commission is here attached
and marked No. 2; a proper record of the original
is to be found in the war office.
" At the time I received my appointment, which
was in February last, and from all the information
then obtained, the enemy was expected to appear
in the months of May or June last, and as the corps
was to be raised in the United States, I received an
order from Gen. Chambers to repair forthwith
with him to the United States to aid and assist in
procuring the men and means necessary to place the
division in Texas for service as speedily as possible;
and in obedience to which order, I set out
from San Felipe for the United States for the object
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Brown, John Henry. Indian wars and pioneers of Texas / by John Henry Brown., book, 1880~; Austin, Tex.. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth6725/m1/190/: accessed July 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .