« AnteriorContinuar »
H. or R.]
Removal of the Indians.
(May 18, 1830.
of any State within its own limits be not infringed or vio- uncommon cases. The committee find it difficult to reoslated." Georgia protested because she thought her le- cile the said construction of the recited clause made by gislative rights were infringed. Her protest was submit- the two States, and their proceedings before mentioned, ted to Congress in 1787, at a time when many of those especially those of Georgia, with what they conceive to be who bad formed the instrument of confederation were ad- the intentions of those who made the said motion ; for the ministering the Government, and must be supposed to committee presume that the delegates of Georgia do bot know the extent of the powers which it conferred. mean that Congress is bound to send their forces to punisb
A long report was made in Congress upon the subject such nations as the State shall pame, to act in aid of the of the protest, denying the ground taken by Georgia and State authority; to send ber forces and recall them as sbe North Carolina, who had also protested, and afirming that shall see fit to make war or peace. Such an idea canoni the proviso bad no such meaning as was contended. I will be consistent with the dignity of the Union, and the prisread a part of that report:
ciples of the federal compact. But the committee 100“ But there is another circumstance, far more embar-ceive that it is the opiosion of the honorable movers, aod rassing, and that is, the clause in the confederation relative also the general opinion, that all wars and hostile measures to managing all affairs with the Indians, &c., is differently against the Creeks, or any other independent tribe of loconstrued by Congress and the two States within whose lim- diaps, ought to be conducted under the authority of the its the said tribes and disputed lands are. The construction Union, at least where the forces of the Union are employed; contended for by these States, if right, appears to the that the power to conduct a war clearly implies the power committee to leave the federal powers, in this case, a mere to examine into the justice of the war, to make peace, nullity, and to make it totally uncertain on what principle and adjust the terms of it; and that, therefore, the terms Congress is to interfere between them and the said tribes. or words of the said motion, if it be adopted by Congress The States not only contend for this construction, but have at all
, must be varied accordingly." actually pursued measures in conformity to it. North Caro Such, sir, was the opinion of Congress of its powers lina bas undertaken to assign lands to the Cherokees, and der the confederation, and it practised upon that opinion. Georgia bas proceeded to treat with the Creeks concerning Not long after this, the present constitution of the United ! peace, lands, and the objects usually the principal ones in States was formed and ratified, Georgia assenting. Doe almost every treaty with the Indians. This construction article of that instrument is : “ All treaties made, and appears to the committee not only to be productive of which shall be made, under the authority of the United confusion, disputes, and embarrassments, in managing af. States, shall be the supreme law of the land." The treaty fairs with the independent tribes within the limits of the of Hopewell was a treaty then“ made." Its validity as a States, but by no means the true one. The clause referred treaty had been already asserted by Congress Georgia to, is : “ Congress shall bave the sole and exclusive right and assented to this article of the constitution, thereby sanepower of regulating the trade and managing all affairs with tioping the treaty of Hopewell, and giving it validity, if it the Indians not members of any of the States, provided bad pone before. Georgia yielded the point in controversy: that the legislative right of any State within its own limits by virtue, as she supposed, of ber reserved legislative rights be not infringed or violated." 'In forming this clause, the she had made a treaty, and acquired lands by it. But of parties to the federal compact must have bad some de- what use were that treaty and those lands to ber ! Nope at finite objects in view. The objects that come into view, all. And, by the compact of 1802, she expressly stipulated priucipally, in forming treaties or managing affairs with that the United States should extinguish the lodian title to the Indians, had been long understood and pretty well the county of Tallahassee—the lands wbich the Indians ascertained in this country. The committee conceive that bad before yielded. Sir, was not this an admission that the it has been long the opinion of the country, supported by treaty which the State had previously made was of 10 justice and humanity, that the Indians have just claims to validity; that the Indian title still remained to be extisall lands occupied by, and not fairly purchased from, them; guished! The coufederation did not recognise the rigbt of and that, in managing affairs with them, the principal Georgia to make a treaty, and Georgia, therefore, did not objects have been those of making war and peace, pur- acquire the lands, but had to call in aid the power of the chasing certain tracts of their lands, fixing the boundaries United States to do it for her. between them and our people, and preventing the latter Such was the authority possessed by the United States settling on lands left in possession of the former. The under the articles of confederation, and such as the es i powers pecessary to these objects appear to the committee to ercise of it. Not long after the treaty of Hopewell was be indivisible, and that the parties to the confederation must made, and the powers of the General Government asserted have intended to give them entire to the Union, or to bave in the report I have read, the present constitution was given them entire to the State. These powers, before the adopted, conferring upon the United States the same per. revolution, were possessed by the King, and exercised by ers of peace and war-of regulating the affairs with the him ; por did they interfere with the legislative right of the Indians, without the limitations as to the legislative rigbts colony within its limits; this distinction, which was then, of the States, which was the foundation of tbe Georgia and may be now taken, may perhaps serve to explain the protest. The restriction under the confederatiop va proviso, part of the recited clause. The laws of the State found to be embarrassing and obscure, and therefore was can have no effect upon a tribe of Indians, or their lands, omitted ; and, as Mr. Madison, in a number of the Perle within the limits of the State, so long as that tribe is ralist, referred to by the gentlemap from New York, [Mr. independent, and not a member of the State; yet the STORES) says, was designedly omitted. The United States, laws of the State may be executed upon debtors, crimi. therefore, derives its authority under the constitutie, nals, and other proper objects of those laws, in all and, in the very same year in which it was ratified, eriti parts of it; and, therefore, the Union may make stipu menced Degotiations and concluded treaties with Indians lations with any such tribe, secure it in the enjoyment of living witbin the limits of a State. Did they do this incauall or part of its lands, without infringing upon the legis- tiously, ignorantly? No, sir; they proceeded in the most lative right in question. It cannot be supposed the State cool and cautious mapper. The Government was circumhas the powers mentioned, without making the recited spect and deliberate. The then President did not take a clause useless, and without absurdity in theory as well as single step without the previous consent of the Senate. He in practice; for the Indian tribes are justly considered the went to that body in person, and inquired wbether be common friends or enemies of the United States, and no would be authorized to offer the guaranty and to pledge particular State can bave an exclusive interest in the man- our faith. The response was that he should be so autho ngement of affairs with any of the tribes, except in some rized. The states interested heard the stipulations which
* May 18, 1830.]
Removal of the Indians.
(H. OF R.
& were proposed, and they set up no objection. It was pro The seventh article of the treaty of Holstop contains the
posed to them that the President should treat with the In- guaranty, of which so much has been said in this debate;
dians within the limits of the State, and Georgia assented and this is the explanation which the committee put upon lan to it. And now are we to be told that the General Govern- that articleim ment had no authority, and that Georgia is not bound by " It was, therefore, thought necessary, in order to ensure I do the treaty! The treaty was made in conformity with their peace, that some strong and decisive evidence should be tin ndvice and consent, and was subsequently ratified by the given of the determination of the Government to preveut,
Senate also, with the consent of Georgia ; and are we now by force, any further intrusions upon the lands reserved hal asked where was our authority to make iti Those who deny for the Indians, and a guaranty of their boundary was de the right must account for so extraordinary a procedure. thougbt of as the means best calculated to effect that ob
Gentlemen say they can well account for it; and the 80-ject. It was probably a device, adopted more for the inlution is, that the treaty was for their benefit; and, there- timidation of the whites, than for any effect it was likely
fore, though the United States had no authority to make it, to have upou the Indians themselves." il yet that they submitted to it because it was for their inte The guaranty was necessary to secure peace; in other en de rest, knowing all the time that the Government had no words, the Indians would not make peace without the gua. right to do it.
ranty. But, instead of being for their benefit, and obliga Sir, it is a well known rule in morals and in common tory upon us, it was probably a device for the intimidasense, that every one making a promise is bound by it in tion of the whites. Sir, I deny this assertion, and I call the sense in which he knows the
her party to understand upon the gentleman to produce his authority for it. How it. When Georgia, therefore, laid by, and saw and knew absurd an ideal how utterly preposterous ! Will the gen. the promises which this Government was making to the tlemad tell me that a solemo promise in a treaty with an
Indians, and yielded her assent, sball she be precluded from other party was not intended to have any effect upon those di asserting that either she or we are pot bound, according to whom it was made, but was a device to intimidate the
to the sense we then knew the Indians put upon those party making it! Could we not intimidate and restrain promises ! By this rule our guaranty is to be measured ; ourselves by laws! I repudiate the idea : I cannot consent and I, for one, will never move an inch to relieve a State thus to fix an indelible stigma on the fair fame of my couswhich thus lies by, and permits us to enter into engage- trySir, the language of the treaty was sincere, intended ments, and receives the beuefit of our contracts, and at to be obligatory upon us, and should be observed most last comes forward with the complaint that we had no right sacredly. to make them. I say to Georgia, if we had no right with. The great object of the gentlenian is to procure the reout your consent, your consent has been obtained. It is too moval of the Indians; and to obtaiu their consent, he prolate. You are estopped,
poses in the bill that the President shall * solemnly gua. Sir, we have heard another doctrine, at which I was, 1 ranty”-the very words of the treaty of Holston-solemnly confess, both astonished and alarmed. We are told that guaranty to them the country to which we propose to send these national treaties are "expedients," resorted to mere. them. The gentleman says that the guaranty in that treaty ly to accomplish our own ends, made for our interest, and was " probably a device for the intimidation of the whites." to be constiued for our benefit. We have a very extra- Well, sir, let the project be executed, and, within a period ordinary bistory of them in the sixteenth page of the com- that the gentleman may live to see, the whites will again mittee's report. It is there said that we are in a critical press upon them, and say you must go-move farther west. situation. Difficulties existed with respect to the forts on When the Indians inquire for what cause, the same reasons our western frontier, and above the Mississippi, with Great will be given then that are given now. All history shows Britain and Spain. We had just come out of a long war, that if you remain near us you will be destroyed. The and were poor: that we were in no condition to incur red man cannot live in contact with the white. Humanity Indian hostilities; and in this particular juncture General and your own interests require your removal. Besides, we Washington was called upon to settle the mode of conduct. bave a right to the land. Our ancestors discovered it. ing our relations with the Indian tribes, and to secure Are we not civilized! And has not civilization a right to our peace with them; that he adopted the practice of prevail over savage lifet Suppose it be 80, reply the In. regulating our affairs with them by treaties. Sır, are they dians, but we were sent here not by our consent, but by any the less obligatory because they were made when we your power; and did you not " solemnly guaranty" to us were in difficulty ! Had we told these lodians, we are now these limits i Very true; but were you so ignorant as not in a critical condition, we want you to treat with us, but, by to know that our guaranty was only an expedient I only a and by, wben we get out of trouble, and grow powerful device! Had you not sagacity enough to perceive that it and strong, we sball consider our compacts as expedients was only a plan to get rid of you I to send you off out of -mere matters of legislation over you; do you think the way! Were you not told by us at the time, that “ In
they would bave ceded their lands. If the Indians, in diap treaties were only a species of legislation ?" Were in the day of our calamity, received our plighted faith, and you not told by a committee of Congress that these things
yielded up their territories, so much the more reason is were only a device! That in our conduct towards you there that we should now observe them as sacredly bind- " one of those expedients was to appear to do nothing ing upon us. There is a moral obligation, beyond all which concerned" you, “either in the appropriation of treaties, to keep our promises in good faith in the day of your hunting grounds, or in controlling your conduct withour strength and power, to which in the day of our weak out your consent !" Nothing but appearance-really and Dess we were indebted for security and peace. Yet the truly we did as we pleased. gentleman at the bead of one of the committees of this Sir, I have no doubt the gentleman is sincere in the guaHouse bas told us that these engagements were mere rapties he proposes to give, and intends to bind the nation
expedients” to obtain peace and get the Iudian lands. in all future time. If he should live to see his assurances Sir, if such is that gentleman's opinion, I am sorry he ex- thus explained and chaffered away, he will feel something pressed it to the world; for I am not willing to affix such of the emotion wbicb Washington and the fatbers of the a stigma on our national fame; I am not willing to commit country would have experienced, could they have anticithe honor of this nation to the gentleman's keeping; and pated that their solemn assurances are to be thus lightly having as one of the humblest citizens of the republic, regarded. some sbare in her faith and her character, I protest for my (Mr. BELL interposed, and said the report bad not been self , and for those I represent, againgt any
such interpreta- correctly understood--that he did not contend that the tion of our engagements.
guaranty was not bidding.)
H. OF R. 1
Removul of the Indians.
(MAY 18, 1830.
Sir, I regret very much if I have misrepresented any | as will in no event expose us to the censures of the world. sentiment of the report. If the gentleman will poiot out Sir, I have before me many documents wbieb I bad inany part of it which he wishes to be read, I will cheer- tended to use, illustrative of the policy of the Government fully do so, and abide by his correction.
towards the Indians, as well of the Crown before the refo[Mr. BELL declined.)
lution, as of the Congress under the confederation, and Sir, I have commented upon it as I understand it, and I since under the present constitution. lu all these I find quote the language which I find in it. The report gives abundaut vindication of Indian rights, to the full extent I another reason why the guaranty should not be under- have endeavored to maintain thens ; but I forbear to tres stood in the sense we affix to it
pass upon the kind indulgence of the committee by con“The victory of the 20th of August, 1794, over the suming their time in reading them. northern Indians, with wbom. the Creeks and Cherokees I will now proceed, sir, to a brief consideration of some bad kept up a regular correspondence; the expedition other topics involved in the bill before us, and which have which was secretly planned, for carrying the war into the been discussed at much length by the member from Ten Cherokee country, and which was successfully conducted Dessee, (Mr. BELL) The gentleman computes the exby the suffering frontier inhabitants ; and the pacific dis pense which will be incurred in the prosecution of this position of the Spanish authorities of Florida which pre- measure, at the most, pot exceeding five millions of doleeded the treaty of 1795 with Spain, were the actual' re- lars. The very nature of the subject forbids accurate and storets of peace."
mninute calculations. As a general principle, we all know "After ibis time, the Government was under no obliga- that public expenditures vastly exceed previous estimates, tion to renew the guaranty contained in the treaties of 1790 Nothing is more common. I am not possessed of suttiand 1791, with the Creeks and Cherokees, but, as it bas cient data to form an estimate with any pretensions to redone so, it only shows that that stipulation was not believed curacy: but, sir, when you consider that sixty thousand to affect the nature of the title by which those tribes held people are to be removed a distance of several hundred their lands, or to introduce any new principle in relation miles; that they are to be subsisted for one year after to their rights generally."
they have reached the destined land ; that customary pre Thus, sir, it seems that our pacific relations with the septs and rewards are to be given to them ; that all their southern tribes were the result of a victory obtained by improvements, possessions, and property, which they leave General Wayne over the northern Indians, with whom the behind, are to be paid for; that agents, commissioners, and Cherokees and Creeks had some alliance that they were contractors are to be employed and compensated ; and, therefore vanquished-tbat after this we were under no moreover, that you will he obliged to purchase of the obligation to renew the guaranty, and, having renewed it, tribes beyond the Mississippi a right to plant others there; it is not therefore to be construed as affecting the nature of I think the most orthodox believer in the dangers of a retheir title, or the extent of their rights.
dundant treasury will have no occasion to be alarmed for Sir, is this the rule by which treaties and compacts are the liberties of the country. Gentlemen who have reto be construed ! I had supposed that the true mode of sisted the prosecution of internal improvement as tending arriving at the meaning of any clause was to examine avd to corrupt the States, will bave the satisfaction to see this weigh the terms in which it is couched to compare it with source of their disquietude removed. But, sir, I shall the general spirit of the instrument, and not to inquire into make no objection on the score of expense. Proteet the the inducements and obligations resting upon the parties lodians in their rights and possessions where they Dow at its formation. Suppose this guaranty to be the merest are, and you may have almost any sum to effect their regratuity in the world on our part, that we were in truth moval, when it can be done with their free, voluptary, onunder no obligation to make it, does it thence follow that biassed consent. The gentleman seeined to anticipate an it is to bave no meaning, or a restricted meaning! Have we objection, on the ground of a want of constitutional power thence a right to construe it away ! Surely not. If we have in Congress to make the appropriation. I shall say but a made the guaranty, we must be bound by the guaranty, iv word on that subject. If these tribes are to be regarded its true, full sense, as understood at the time of making it. as distinct communities, independent of the States where This idea of abrogating the force of treaties is of modern they reside, possessed of lands which will belong to 13 origin. The parties who now favor it were formerly among when their title is extinguisbed, I can see vo valid objeethe most zealous defenders of the faith and obligations of tion of the kibd the gentleman anticipated But if they are treaties. In 1827, Georgia contended most manfully that to be regarded as individual citizens of a State, subject to treaties were sacred, binding, immutable. She demanded its laws, possessing property as individuals, and protected the full performance of the stipulations with the Creeks at in its enjoyment, then I do not easily perceive the authority the Indian Springs, and wholly denied the power even of which we possess to make the appropriation. Suppose, the parties to the compact to rescind it, though it was sir, that some fifty thousand of the citizens of New York founded in gross fraud and corruption. In every line of or New England wish to enrigrate to the West, and ask her remonstrance we perceive the tenacity and force with the aid of Government to enable them to accomplish that wbich she cluog to the validity of treaties. Sir, in a com-object; would such an application be listened to for a mo munication to which I have already referred, from the Pre- ment i Should we not be reminded that the powers of sident to the Creek Indians, in which he endeavors to con- the General Government were all “enumerated," and vince them that the treaties are not binding upon us, if among them there was done authoriting it to appropriate construed as impairing the sovereignty of Georgia, be the public treasury to enable individuals to change their claims from them the most exact performance of their ob- location i Sir, bis hall would echo with the perpetual religations: “Our peaceful mother earth has been stained iteration of " constitutional scruples." by the blood of the white man, and calls for the punish The gentleman (Mr. BELL) bas urged the passage of this ment of his murderers, whose surrender is now demanded, bill, on the ground of humanity to the Indians, and the pro under the solemn obligation of the treaty which your motion of their own interests and bappiness. He informs chiefs and warriors, in council
, have agreed to. To pre- the committee that the tribes proposed to be removed sre serve peace, you must comply with your own treaty." a degraded, declining race, who are rapidly wasting away, With wbat face can we require of them the full, faithful and will, ere long, be destroyed, if they remain in their performance of their promises, when in the same breath present situation. The lessons of history are adduced to we tell them that we had do authority to give the assur- show that the red man cappot live in contiguity with the ances on our parti Sir, let us construe and so perform our wbite ; that it is the inevitable fate of the savage to perish engagements as to preserve the national faith and honor, whenever civilization has planted its foot within their con
May 18, 1830.)
Removal of the Indians.
(H. OF RI
fines. However just this may be in the general, it has no long can their schools and their churches be maintained in application to the southern tribes, particularly to the Chero- the bosom of the wilderness ? Sir, they will be only obe kees, who are chiefly interested in the subject before us. jects of plunder to the stranger and more savage banda
They are not hordes of wandering savages; they are not around them. They will be vverrun; and, if they resist, ble hunters. They till the earth ; they have mechanics' shops it will only provoke extermination. Can they till the
and trades, schools and churches, cultivated fields and ground, when its fruits will ripen only to be gathered and flocks--have made great advances in civilization--formed consumed by hordes of savages, who know do aw but a written code of government established a press. Is it force, no right but power ? Sir
, I firmly believe they I'll for the benefit and bappiness of such a people to be ex cannot exist in the country to which you are about to send
pelled from their country, and planted again in the depths them; and I can give no countenance to a project which of the forest, to resume the wild state from which they had contemplates their remoral against their wishes and their emergedSir
, I do not find anywhere in the records of remorstrances. We have, among the papers before us, a i bistory that the condition of such a people can be promoted very affecting account of the distress and privations which
by such a measure. Least of all do I find that the interest the tribes west of the Mississippi already' endure. I will or bonor of any nation can be promoted by a violation read an extract which has been often quoted, but which of its public treaties--an infraction of its plighted faith. cannot be too often called to our recollection, from the
Wbether it be for the benefit of the Indians to remove or letter of General Clark. an not, is a question for them to decide ; and so long as they “The condition of many tribes west of the Mississippi ho shall determine that it is not for their advantage and bap- is the most pitiable that can be imagined. During several
piness, and refuse to comply, so long are they entitled to seasons in every year they are distressed by famine, in protection and security in all their rights. In several of which many die for want of food, and during which the
our treaties with them, we have had in view their perma- living child is often buried with the dend mother, because u nent residence in the territories which they possess. We no one could spare it as much food no would sustain it * have held out inducements for them to become cultivated, through its helpless infancy. This description applies to
and have stipulated to furnish them "with useful implements Sioux, Osages, and many others, but I mention those beof husbandry," for the purpose of reclaiming them from cause they are powerful tribes, and live near our borders, the
savage state. The treaty of 1817 is too explicit op and my official station enables me to know the exact truth. this point to be omitted. The preamble recites, that, in It is in vain to talk to people in this condition about learn1808, a delegation of the Cherokee nation signified to the ing and religion.” President the anxious desire of one part of the pation " to The honorable gentlemau answered this objection in engage in the pursuit of agriculture and civilized life in anticipation; and what was his answer? Why, that disthe couutry they, then occupied;" and that this portion tress and suffering of this description were common among wished for a division of the country, and an assignment of Indiaus--that it is incident to their character and habits lands for that purpose; that “ by thus cuptracting their and modes of life—that it is not more frequent now than it society within Darrow limits, they proposed to begin the always has been. And is this a sufficient answer? Are we establishment of fixed laws and a regular government." to send a whole people from their abodes of comfort, to
Another portion of the tribe wished to pursue the hunter scenes of distress like these, with the cold answer that it is life, and for that end, were desirous to remove beyond no hardship, because such sufferings are common & Bethe Mississippi. The President (Mr. Jefferson) answered, cause the tribes west of the Mississippi are compelled " the United States, my childreo, are the friends of both to endure these distressing privations, therefore it is no parties, and, so far as can reasonably be asked, are willing hardship to send other tribes there to endure them al101 to satisfy the wishes of both. Those who remain may be Will such an answer satisfy benevolence, philanthropy, assured of our patronage, our aid, and good neighborhood.” humanity? Will it alleviate the pangs of the civilized Such was the preamble; and it concludes, Now know Cherokee, when he consigns bis dead wife and his living ye, that to carry into effect the before recited promises child to the earth, to be told that such scenes are of frewith good faith,” &c., the parties concluded the treaty. I quent occurrence : ask, if we have not "assured" them of a permanent resi And, sir, how wiki these sufferings be aggravated by such dence, if we have not promised them “our good neigh- an accumulation of numbers? The country does not dow borhood;" and now that the experiment bas so far been afford subsistenca i enough for its population. How much successful, and they have made rapid advances in civiliza- greater will be the deficiency, when sixty thousand more tion, are we to be told that humanity and their own inte. are added to its starving inbabitants? The gentleman has rests require them to be thrust again into the wilderness i said that the country is well adapted to their wants-aboundSir, what will be their condition in the country to which iting in timber and water, and capable of a bigh degree of is proposed they shall remove? The gentleman has de cultivation. If it were so, from the causes I have mentione scribed the region, about six hundred miles in length, and ed they can never possess and cultivate it in security. We two hundred and fifty in width, between the western boun- have been called upon at the present session to make a daries of Arkansas and Missouri and the base of the Rocky military road of several hundred miles in extent upon the Mountains, somewhere within the limits of wbich is to be western borders of Arkansas and Missouri, and to mount their ultimate destination. The gentleman's plan is to ten companies of infantry for the protection of the white locate the southern tribes among the Cherokees, Creeks, inhabitants against the predatory incursions of the Indians. Choctaws, and Chickasaws, who have already moved. Be The delegate from Arkansas assures us that the security sides these parts of tribes, the Osages are there, and the of that frontier depends upon these measures. How much warlike bands of the Camanches, Sioux, and Pawnees more will the feeble tribes you propose to send still far. roam over the vast prairies in search of game, or on their ther into the forests, need your protection? The gentlepredatory excursions. It is now designed to plaut a civi- man has not taken into bis account of expenses those lized colony amid a people of these savage habits. They which will be incurred in keeping up a military establishare not hunters, whom we are about to send there. Agri- ment in that vicinity, which will be absolutely necessary culture is their employmeut. They are not warriors. We to preserve peace among the different tribes, who will have induced them to lay aside the war club and the toma- find perpetual sources of discord when crowded together hawk, and to substitute the peaceful implements of bus- in the small limits assigned them. bandry. They have flocks, and property of various But, sir, is the country suited to their wants ? The gen. descriptions. How long can they retain it in the neigh- tleinan must allow me to say that I repose little confidence borbood of the warlike tribes I bave enumerated! How in the information be bas received upon this subject. De.
H. OF R.)
Removal of the Indians.
(May 18, 1830.
scriptions from other sources give a different account. I There is one other subject on which I think it is due will only refer, however, to the opinion of a delegation of to justice to give my testimony, whatever it may be worth. the Chickasaw nation, who were sent last year west of the whether the Cherokees are wise in desiring to remain Mississippi, “ in search of a bome.” It is among the docu- here or not, I express no opinion. But it is certainly just ments upon our tables. They could find no country to that it should be koowo whether or not they do, as a body, which they would consent to remove, except one small wish to remain. It is not possible for a person to dwell tract which was already occupied. The vacant lands, among them without hearing much on the subject. I bare they said, were pot adapted to their convenience. “If beard much. It is said abroad that the common people we had found a country to please us, it was our intention would gladly remove, but are deterred by the chiefs ani s to exchange. It is yet our wish to do so. But we can- few other influential men, It is not so. I say with the not consent to remove to a country destitute of a single utmost assurance, it is not so. Nothing is plainer than corresponding feature to the one in which we at present that it is the earnest wish of the wbole body of the reside.” Such, sir, is the information we have received people to remain where they are. They are not overaved from the lodians themselves. If they wise to remove, I by the chiefs. Individuals 'miny be overawed by popular would furnish them assistance to do it. But I would first opivion, but not by the chiefs. On the other hand, if there secure them in their rights where they now reside. I were a chief in favor of removal, he would be overaved would then furnish them the most ainple information pos- by the people. He would know that he could not open sible of the country in which it is proposed to locate them, bis mouth in favor of such a proposition, but oo pain, give them every means of forming a correct judgment as not only of the failure of bis re-election, but of popular to their situation and conditiou iu their new abodes, and / odiurn and scora. The whole tide of national feeling then leave the decision to them.
sets, io one strong and uobroken current, against & té When, sir, under these circumstances they sball decide moval to the West." to remove, I apprehend no objection will be made to it. With this evidence before me, I must be pardoned when It has been urged, bowever, very, zealously by the gentle. I tell the honorable chairman (Mr. BELL) that I do not remen (Messrs. Bell and LUMPKIN) that the great tags of pose confidence in the information with wbich he has been the southern Indians are now willing and anxious to re furnished, and has presented to the House. It seems to be ! move, but are restrained and kept iu awe by the chiefs assumed, without evidence, and against evidence, that the and white men who reside ainong the tribes. Where is Indians are willing to remove, but are restrained by some the evidence of this Upon what facts do the gentlerden overpowering cause. In 1827, the complaint of Georgia make the assertion? Is it to be found in the circumstance was, that the Government had beglected its duty, and, inthat they have uniformly and firmly resisted all your offers stead of adopting a course which would termipate in the and solicitutious ? Commissioners were sent last year to removal of the Indians, had pursued a policy calculated to negotiate upon this subject, with instructions so peculiar, render their residence permanent. There was no comthat I cannot forbear to advert to them. What were these plaipt then against the chiefs. It was all tbe fault of Goinstructions! Why, sir, not to permit their official charac verument. Well, sir, we have now a Government co-opeter to be known, but to appear among the lodians as their ratiug with Georgia. This ground of complaint is removed. friends and advisers, solicitous ouly for their benefit und Still the Iudians refuse to go. Some new reason must be happiness. In this mode their contidence was to be won. found for their refusal. Sir, would it not be better to idThey were not to convene the Indiaus in council, agree- quire into the fact, thau to be searching for the causes of ably to upform custom whenever negotiatious were to be that which is only assumed to exist ! Is it pot datural and conducted with them, but to see "the chiefs and other reasonable that they should be unwilling to abandon their influential men, not together, but apart, at their own homes? Are they not men ! Are they vot capable of athouses ;" and when other arguments and advice should fail, tachments ! Have they no ties to bind them to the land of "offers to them of extensive reservations in fee simple, and their birth-to the soil which covers the ashes of their faother rewards, would, it is boped, result in obtaining their thers! is not their country dear to them! Sir, in their acquiescence.” So it seems the Indian territory, the pro- view, that earth wears a deeper verdure, and the beavens perty of the whole nation, was to be obtained by offers of pour a more unclouded radiance, than in all the world be• rewards” to the chiefs and iufluential men, to procure sides. It is unnatural, it is unreasonable to suppose that their assent. Is this the mode in which Indian rigūts are they are “ apxious” to quit the scenes of their childhood, to be treated! Bribery to the chiefs ? What is the reason to seek a new home, far off, in the lands of the setting sun. given for not convening the Indians in council ? A most And, sir, bow are they to be removed! The only proremarkable one truly. It is in these words ; " The pust ject I bave seen is that contained in the report from the has demonstrated their utter aversion to this mode, whilst bureau of Indino Affairs " to the Secretary of War, and by it has been made equally clear that another mode promises him transınitted to Congress. The proposition is, that greater success. In regard to the first, the Indiaus have they shall be removed by contract"_and the recomseen in the past that it bas been by the results of councils mendation of this plan is, that it can be done much cheaper that the extent of their country has been from time to time than in any other mode. By contract, sir! What ! are diminished. They all comprehend this." Now, sir, it sixty thousand buman beings-the sick, the aged, the inis represented that the Indians are willing to exchange firm, children, and infants to be transported hundreds of their country, and to remove. If so, wby not convene miles, over mountains and rivers and forests, by contract ! them in couucil
, as it is by means of councils that the ex. By those who will engage to perform the service for the tent of their country bas beeu dirninished! Would they sinallest sum ? Are you to hold out such inducements to have such an “utter aversion to this mode." if they were long and fatiguing marches-to scanty and cheap provireally willing to adopt the measures to which such a mode sious ? Will you place these haplese, deceived, and abused leads ? No, sir. They see it has been by councils that their people at the mercy of contractors, whose only object is country has beeu diminished, and they are opposed to coun- guini in whose bosoms lodian wrongs and Indian suffer cils because they are opposed to any further diminution. ing will find but little sympathy. Sir, if this is the mode
Upon this subject we have the testimony of a gentleman in wbich the measure is to be executed, I will never yield resident among the Cherokees, whom the menuber from my savction to it, though the Indians should be willing to Georgia (Mr. LUMPKIN] represents as worthy of all confi- remove. No, sir, if they must go, let their path be made dence, and whose word surely he will not deny. I will smooth. If the treasury is to be opened, let it be opened read an extract of a letter from Mr. Worcester, published wide enough to relieve all their wants ; to render their situa among the documents of the Senate :
tion, bad at the best, as tolerable as the exigeney will admit.