Law of April 6, 1830

The “Law of April 6, 1830” was passed in an attempt to stop the flood of immigration from the United States to Texas. The law was based on the fourteen recommendations in the Mier y Teran Report encouraging the colonization of Texas by Mexicans and Europeans, promoting military occupation, and stimulating coastal trade.

The law authorized a loan to cover the cost of transporting colonists to Texas, opened the coastal trade to foreigners for four years, and provided for a federal commissioner of colonization to make sure empresario contracts agreed with the colonization law. It prohibited the transport of slaves into Mexico. Another goal was the suspension of existing empresario contracts.

Texas colonists did not like the new law. Stephen F. Austin tried to calm them. He protested the law to the commissioner and the Mexican president. By manipulating some of the law’s articles, Austin managed to obtain an exemption for his own contract and also for empresario Green DeWitt.

The law slowed down immigration, canceled contracts that had been awarded but not yet fulfilled, and stopped two active enterprises.

Source: Law of April 6, 1830
Copyright © Texas State Historical Association

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