Phoenix & Indians' Advocate
Vol. 1, no. 52
Wed., March 11, 1829
Page 2, col. 5b
Extract from the closing part of an address, delivered in New Orleans, in the summer of 1826, by a young Cherokee.
After speaking of the progress of his countrymen, in the arts and sciences, the result of Gen. Washington's advice to them, he proceeds thus:
But gentlemen tell us, that, these Indians must be removed to some point in the west. What? Shall we leave our country, the gift of Heaven and the request of our ancestors? Forever bid farewell to the land that gave us birth -- the pure and sweet waters of Tsalagi, and go to penetrate the dreary and inhospitable regions of the west? there to linger out a miserable existence? Never! never! Let us remain in the land of our Fathers, & give us death. We have resolved never to raise up arms against the United States, and if, in the course of time, that power were to aim at the extirpation of our race in order to get our lands, we shall willingly fall by our fire sides, and mingle our dust with that of our departed friends. We will seal the honor of our name at the altar of patriotism. Our spirits will go to the land of shadows, where our Fathers have gone, and where we hope to be annoyed no more by the avarice of the white man, who knows no law but that of power.
But I have forgotten myself. The Inspiration of my theme has carried me too far. I am addressing myself to a patriotic, enlightened, and christian assembly. I have anticipated events, which I hope, may never occur. For my brethren and kindred, the Cherokees are in the midst of a christian community, and in the bosom of the United States. Behold, I am at this moment, not in the dominions of the Sultan, & in a mahometan mosque, but in a land of freedom, pure christianity and enlightened benevolence, with the walls of a temple dedicated to an Almighty & a righteous God.
You my friends have read, with tears, the Spanish cruelties in South America. As enlightened christians, you long for the emancipation of the Catholics in Ireland. You sympathize very justly, with Greece in her present struggle for freedom. Your friendly hand is extended to foreigners from every part of the Globe. Here the oppressed and persecuted in other nations find an asylum and a home. They are admitted, in time, into the rights and privileges of American citizens. In a word, your country is celebrated for the mildness of its government, the hospitality and humanity of its citizens, and for its superior religion, based on these words: "Do unto others as ye would they should do unto you."
Surely then, you cannot concur in the policy of the day to remove the natives, the rightful and original owners of America, tantalized with hopes of civilization, from the native homes, to the wilds of the west. You will not, I am sure, aid in the destruction of the Cherokees and extinguish the last ray of hope left to them -- strip them of every right, and all that is dear and precious to their hearts. -- But such a project is in operation. O cruel! cruel! I call upon the Honorable judges and gentlemen of the bar for defence. I invoke the genius of the Constitution of the United States, for protection. I call upon the clergy who officiate at the holy altar, to defend the rights of bleeding humanity. And may New Orleans famous for its commercial importance, be equally famous for its friendship to this unfortunate race.