Wednesday May 14, 1828
It has been frequently said, that the treatment of the United States Commissioners of late, in this Nation, has been disrespectful and contemptuous. We have always thought this an unwarrantable charge, originating from no other cause, but from the very fact of the failure of these Commissioners to attain their objects. From the correspondence, a part of which we publish today, our readers will judge whether the authorities of the Nation have treated the United States Commissioners with any degree of disrespect. We are sure it is far from the wish of our Citizens to be disrespectful.
The Cherokee Constitution has produced a very mistaking idea in the minds of many persons, especially such as endeavor to take every advantage of the Indians.- To say that the Cherokees have declared themselves independent of the United States and violated, in their constitution, their connection with the General Government, would be doing them very great injustice: for the thought of such independence has never entered into their minds, as we already have had occasion to declare; and we hope a word to the wise and candid will be sufficient. This constitution was adopted for the good of the Cherokee People, as their condition made it evident that they could not improve otherwise in legislation. It did not originate in any desire of such independence as our treaties with the United States would not warrant. We do not claim rights which do not belong to us, much less are we so blinded as to suppose, that we can within ourselves change our relation with the General Government. Rights, however, we have, secured to us by treaties, and will the people of this enlightened land, emphatically called the land of freedom, deprive us of these few rights?
The Editor of the Statesman ' Patriot
(a Georgia paper,) has the following article-'Though much has been said about the Cherokee civilization, we are of opinion that many strides must be taken before those Indians may with truth be termed a civilized people. The Phoenix of the 2d instant furnishes matter of ill omen as to the success of the new constitution. A system of thievery, by which property is run into the white settlement, is said to exist even around New Echota; and frequent murders are committed without the perpetrators being apprehended or brought to trial!'
This Editor, perhaps, is not aware that the instigators, leaders and principals, of this system of thievery are whitemen [sic], citizens of Georgia. He will inform us how many strides, these must take 'before they can with truth be termed a civilized people.'
We are told,( and we have no reason to dispute it) that our white neighbors, who have taken the place of our more honest neighbors Creeks, are continually trespassing on the rights of our citizens, by stealing every species of property, and they do it with impunity. Some of these men it is said, are civil officers of the State of Georgia, the very same persons to whom the proclamation of his Excellency Gov. Forsythe is directed.
The same Editor, speaking upon what we had formerly said, respecting the right of the Cherokees to the lands now in their possession, on the ground of occupancy, observes, 'Strolling over a country is somewhat different from a permanent occupancy.' Query. What kind of occupancy have those, who have never even strolled over a country?
Page 3 Col. 3b
Montgomery Ala. April 17.
Mr. Benjamm [sic] Hawkins, a half breed Creek Indian, has returned from the Arkansas, whither he went in company with the emigrating party. He reports, that the main body of the emigrants are much pleased with their location, they finding game in the greatest abundance, and the surrounding tribes of Indians perfectly friendly. Col. Brearly may be expected in a very few days; and we are induced to believe that the time is not far distant when the whole Creek nation will remove west of the Mississippi.
It is a fact not generally known, that the tribe of Creeks called the Alabamas actually speak the same tongue as the Osages, and that a large body of them emigrated about forty years ago, whose descendants now form a part of the Osage Indians.- How the Alabamas could have separated from the parent tribe, it is now matter of curiosity and conjecture.
While on the subject, we would notice that some disturbances have lately taken place in the nation.- Capt. William Walker, of whose abilities the government had availed themselves to induce emigration, lately erected a building for the purpose of storing the public property of the United States. A party of Indians, of about thirty professing to act by the directions of the present authorities of the nation, have burned this building and threaten to destroy all others which shall be put there. The whole affair has been properly represented to the government.
Page 3 Col. 5b
We are authorized to announce Messrs. Walter Adair and John Ridge as Candidates for the Committee for Coosewattee District. Also Major Ridge, Tesahdaski, and James Foster, as Candidates for the same District.
We should like to receive the names of other Candidates.