Between Gens. Gray, Davidson, and Cocke, late Commissioners of the United States, and Messrs. John Ross and Ridge, on the part of the Cherokee Nation.
AUGUST 27, 1827.
Sir:- Generals Gray and Davidson of North Carolina, and Gen. Cocke of Tennessee, are at this place under the instructions from the President of the United States to hold a Conference with the Cherokee Indians, on several subjects which are of interest to the Indians as well as the United States.
They have written circular letters and sent messengers to all the different parts of the Cherokee Country, inviting the attendance of the Headmen, Chiefs and Warriors, at the Cherokee Agency, on the 18th September next.
I have thought it my duty to ask your attention to this call on the Cherokees, and have enclosed you a copy of their circular, and have to request that you and all the members of the National Committee and Council will attend, and hear their Communications, and give them your deliberate, serious, and impartial consideration.
I am Sir, with sentiments of respect and esteem your ob't servant.
John Ross, President of the National Committee, Cherokee Nation.
TO THE CHIEFS, HEADMEN 7 WARRIORS OF THE CHEROKEE NATION.
BROTHERS:- Our father the President of the United States has appointed the undersigned and directed them to hold Councils with you the present summer. To fulful [sic] his desire we are now at the Agency, the place appointed by your request to transact all business, and receive communications from the Government of the United States.
We invite your attendance at your Agency on the 18th day of September 1827, when we will fully explain in Gen. Council, the views of the Government on subjects calculated to promote your interest, and happiness and the welfare of the citizens of the United States.
We are your friends and Brothers,
GEO. L. DAVIDSON.
Cherokee Agency, Aug. 23, 1823 [sic]
HEAD OF COOSA, CHEROKEE NATION,
SEPTEMBER 15, 1827
SIR:- On my return home from Chickamauga Court, I received your letter of the 27th of August last, informing me that Generals Gray and Davidson of North Carolina, and Gen. Cocke of Tennessee, were at the Agency, under instruction from the President of the United States to hold a conference with the Cherokee Indians, on several subjects of interest to the Indians, as well as to the U. States; and that they had written Circular letters, and sent messengers to all the different parts of the Cherokee country, inviting the attendance of the Chiefs, head men and Warriors, at the Cherokee Agency, on the 18th day of this month; and that you thought it your duty to ask my attention to this call on the Cherokees, and therefore enclosed me a copy of their circulars; and further, to request me and all the members of the National Committee and Council to attend and hear their communications, and give them our deliberate, serious and impartial consideration.
In reply, I have to state, that I have confered [sic] with some of the most influential members of Committee and Council on the subject, ' it is deemed by them to be inexpedient ' impracticable to convene the Gen. Council of the nation at the place and time invited; and the heavy expenses, which have been incured [sic] by the call session and the Convention in the Course of the summer, forbids the expediency of convening the General Council again, previous to the second Monday of October next, the time fixed on for the annual sessions at New Echota. You will therefore discover the uselessness of urging the call on the present occasion, contrary to the convenience of the Nation. But should Generals Gray, Davidson and Cocke attend at New Echota on the 8th of October next, or at any time during the session of the General Council, the members would receive them with that respect and friendship which their commission and characters merit, and their communications would receive a candid consideration. You will therefore please to hand them the enclosed reply to their circular address.
I am Sir, very respectfully your obedient servant,
TO GENERALS, GRAY, COCKE, AND DAVIDSON.
GENTLEMEN:- We have seen some of your circular addresses, which are distributed thro' [sic] the country by your messengers, to the Chiefs, Headmen, and Warriors of the Cherokee Nation informing them that you are appointed by the President of the United States to hold Councils with them during the summer, and inviting their attendance at the Agency on the 18th day of this month, in order that you may fully explain in General Council the views of the Government on subjects calculated to promote their interest and happiness, and the welfare of the citizens of the United States. We consider it our duty in behalf of the Nation to inform you, that this sudden and unexpected general invitation which you have thought proper to make for a General Council on the occasion, cannot be accepted under the great inconvenience and expense which would attend the nation on such a meeting previous to the second Monday in October next, the time fixed on for the annual meeting of the General Council of the Nation, at New Echota the seat of Government for the Cherokee Nation. We would therefore respectfully invite your attendance at New Echota on the 8th day of October next, or at any time during the session of the General Council, when the representatives of the nation would give you the right hand of friendship, and be prepared to receive communications from you on all subjects entrusted by the President to your mission, and to give them that candid consideration which their importance may deserve. We would further assure you that the proper authorities of this nation are ever disposed to receive all the Public agents of the Government with that respect and attention due to their characters and in a manner to comport with Brotherly kindness.
With great respect, we are your friends and Brothers,
MAJOR X RIDGE
Cherokee Nation, Sept. 15th 1827
[To Be Continued]