Mr. Conrad today introduced a resolution directing the closing of land offices, collecting records, appointing a Commissioner, etc., which lays on the table.
What with the advance of the Mexicans on one side and the Indians on the other, and the organization of a new government, this Convention would seem to have enough on their hands to do. Yet they get on slowly. The evil spirit of electioneering is among them for the high offices in prospect. And the land quest. also requires much log rolling, to make it suit the existing interests or selfish views of members. The Constitution gets on slowly.
A document read today stated that the officers of the army amount to 128; navy, 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 1 surgeon.
Wednesday, March 9, 1836
Weather warm and fine. I have made a bargain with Heath, the carpenter, for his shop. He is to put a good floor in it, and rent it for $25 until 1st of April. Zavala, Navarro, Ruis, Badgett and myself are to occupy it and divide the cost equally. We shall then be retired, and comparatively comfortable, and I shall enjoy the benefit of an intercourse with Zavala, whose character and attainments interest me. He has kindly offered to give me lessons in Spanish, and I have already received several. He is obliging, kind and very polite. So are Ruis and Navarro. They seem much gratified at my efforts to learn Spanish; they and the servants all help me, correct my mistakes, and praise my diligence. They, however, do not speak English as Zavala does. They are a kind people, but indolent. My industry in writing and studying surprises them.
Dr. Everett, a member of the Convention, today asked me if the lenders of the $200,000 loan would not be satisfied with having the amount paid returned with interest. I told him I could only speak for myself, and asked him if he was prepared to return it. He said yes, there were some gentlemen who would advance the money. I told him they had better take all they could get, for that they would want all that could be got beside the loan. He observed that the Commissioners had transcended their powers, had made hard terms, and must have been asleep, plainly intimating that they had been overreached. I find from various circumstances that a great hostility exists in the Convention against the loan, and that it will probably not be ratified, and, what is unfortunate, I feel that the hostility to the loan extends in some degree to me. I do not experience so much cordiality as I did at first.
The business of the Convention drags.
There are some questions that they seem
afraid to approach. They are sure to produce excitement, come up when
they may. The land question is one, and the loan they are unwilling or
afraid to ratify. Such miserable narrow mindedness is
astonishing. There is a great want of political philosophy and practical
political knowledge in the body.