Wednesday, July 9, 1828
We think it necessary to inform our readers, that one of our hands has left us to see a parent who is dangerously ill, and perhaps we shall not be able to issue our next number until week after next. Our patrons will please to remember, that the location of our paper renders such failures unavoidable, as it is not in our power, in cases like the above, to procure substitutes. But as our subscribers are entitled to fifty-two numbers, we hope there will be but little cause of complaint.
In our 18th number we noticed that a thief had entered the store of Mr. E. Hicks of this place, and taken various articles. A certain individual who has been known to do the like before, was immediately suspected- a pursuit ensued, but it proved ineffectual. Most of the stolen articles have since been returned, and there is now but little doubt left that the suspicion was correct. We are even told, that during the night of the robbery, he was riding a stolen horse. That our citizens may beware of this fellow, and that he may soon be overtaken by justice, we will give his name and request the officers of this District to bring him to deserved punishment. His name is TSU-SO-LUNG-TAH [ in Cherokee] He is a notorious thief. It will not do to permit him to run at large much longer.
Our election day will be on the first Monday of next month. We hope there will be a general attendance of our citizens in each of the precincts. For the information of those who have not received the first numbers of the Phoenix, we republish in Cherokee the third article of the constitution, which will guide them, at that time, in the exercise of those rights, secured to them by that instrument.
In another part of to-day's paper is inserted a notice of the annual examination of the Mission School at Brainard. We heartily wish that there maybe a good attendance on that occasion. We think it important that the friends of this institution should go and gratify themselves, and by their presence encourage the children and their Teachers. It would also be for the interest of the other Schools to have, in like manner, annual examinations.
A report seems to be prevailing, that the Missionaries of this Nation have publicly expressed themselves favorable to Indian emigration. As a report of this nature may work against these good people, we think it proper to state ( and we do it upon good authority,) that their views on this subject have never been made known by them in a public manner.
We would take the liberty to repeat what we stated in our first number, that the existence of this paper must depend on the measure of support received from abroad. We never supposed that it could be supported at home, and though our little tribe has afforded as many subscribers as we could have reasonably expected, yet our subscription list must be greatly augmented in order to continue our labors without embarrassment. We commenced our work with but few subscribers (little rising of one hundred,) under the expectation that ample support would be freely given by the friends of Indians, at least for the sake of charity, if for no other reason. Our expectation bade fair to be fully realized for a while, but now we feel apprehensive that we were mistaken in our calculations.- The last mail brought us but one solitary subscriber, and for a few weeks past the number has been rapidly diminishing, and as yet we have but a trifling list, by no means adequate to keep our Phoenix alive. Must it droop and die for want of sustenance? We hope not. We hope our distant friends to whom we would now particularly make our appeal, will remember us. Let them remember, that though by subscribing, they may not receive any benefit, yet they may be the means of affording incalculable blessings to the Cherokees.
We take pleasure in tendering our thanks to those who have exerted themselves in procuring us subscribers. Their success makes it evident to our mind, that with proper exertions of our friends, our paper can be supported. We will give two instances, in order that the example may be followed in other places. In Mobile (Ala.) by means of an individual friend who, with commendable zeal, has taken an interest in the prosperity of the Phoenix, we have been enabled to receive between thirty and forty subscribers. In Troy, (N. Y.) by the recommendation of a number of friends to Indians, our subscription list has been augmented with an equal number of names, while in other places, where we had supposed success most probable, we have not even a solitary subscriber. If our labour [sic] is deserving of patronage, we hope it will be freely given.
A NEW TREATY.
The last, the preceding, and the present year have been remarkable for Indian treaties. To the number already existing is added another, with the Cherokees of the west of the Mississippi, lately made at Washington City. We have not seen the treaty. What we now publish is copied from a Georgia paper. We have not as yet understood who made the offer for an exchange of countries, the United States, or the Cherokee Delegation. If our brethren suppose that a removal further west will promote their interest and happiness, they certainly have a right to make the experiment. But to us, the case of these Cherokees afford one proof of the uselessness of this emigrating scheme. How many years have passed away when the territory of Arkansas was pointed to us as a suitable country for the Indians? a country abounding with game, and free from the intrusion of the whites. Our brethren had not been there long when they fell into difficulties-they were at war with the Osages - they complained of intrusions, and of the want of sufficient regard of the United States to their treaty stipulation.- What substantial reason is there that all these will not be renewed in their new country? We wish well to our brethren, and whatever their situation may be, we sincerely hope they will become completely civilized, of which we have no reason to question, if they are once permanently settled. In regard to the inducements for emigration held out, in the following article, to the Cherokees east of the Mississippi, particularly those within the chartered limits of Georgia, we have but one opinion, and that is, those inducements will not procure a single emigrant. They are insufficient we has almost said trifling, and do not well become the dignity of the United States. A blanket has lost its former value with us, so has the rifle and the kettle, and the mention of five pounds of tobacco in a treaty, where the interest of a nation of Indians is supposed to be concerned, looks to us, too much like jesting.
Art. 8. The Cherokee Nation, West of the Mississippi having by this agreement, freed themselves from the harrassing [sic] and ruinous effects consequent upon a location amidst a white population, and secured to themselves and their posterity, under the solemn sanction of the guarantee of the United States, as contained in this agreement, a large extent of unembarrassed country; and that their Brothers yet remaining in the States may be induced to join them and enjoy the repose and blessings of such a state in future, it is further; agreed on the part of the United States, that to each Head of a Cherokee family now residing within the Chartered limits of Georgia, or of either of the States, East of the Mississippi, who may desire to remove West, shall be given on enrolling himself for emigration, a good Rifle, a Blanket, and Kettle, and five pounds of Tobacco (and to each member of his family one Blanket,) also, a just compensation for the property he may abandon, to be assessed by persons to be appointed by the President of the United States. The cost of the emigration of all such shall also be borne by the United States, and good and suitable ways opened, and provisions procured for their comfort, accommodation, and support, by the way, and provisions for twelve months after their arrival at the Agency; and to each person, or head of a family, if he take along with him four persons, shall be paid immediately on his arriving at the Agency and reporting himself and his family; or followers, as emigrants and permanent settlers, in addition to the above, provided he and they shall have emigrated from within the Chartered limits of the State of Georgia, the sum of Fifty Dollars, and this sum in proportion to any greater or less number that may accompany him from within the aforesaid Chartered limits of the State of Georgia.
Proviso by the Senate
'Provided, nevertheless, that the said Convention shall not be so construed as to extend the Northern Boundary, of the `Perpetual Outlet West,' provided for and guaranteed in the second article of said Convention, North of the thirty-sixth degree of North latitude, or so as to interfere with the lands assigned, or to be assigned, West of the Mississippi River, to the Creek Indians who have emigrated or may emigrate from the State of Georgia and Alabama, under the provisions of any Treaty or Treaties heretofore concluded between the United States and the Creek tribe of Indians; and provided further, That nothing in the said Convention shall be construed to cede or assign to the Cherokees any lands heretofore ceded or assigned to any tribe or tribes of Indians, by any Treaty now existing and in force, with any such tribe or tribes.'
In the above article, the new country, to which the Cherokees are to remove, is guarantied to them nearly in the same language as that used in the 7th article of the treaty of Holston, viz: 'The United States solemnly Guarantie [sic] to the Cherokee Nation, all their lands not hereby ceded.'- This, the United States Commissioners, D. G. Campbell and J. Merriwether, in their correspondence with the General Council of this Nation, published in our late numbers, took the occasion to say, amounted to nothing. What is then the security in this new, and permanent home of our brethren?
FOR THE CHEROKEE PHOENIX
_________The wasting arm of war destroys
The well-told tale of great events, while
And Kingdoms fall, and prouder empires
How uncertain are the events of tomorrow. When thoughts turn on the scenes of other years, a sigh bursts in secret. Time was when the aborigines were the exclusive lords of this vast continent. O'er its fertile meadows they wandered at pleasure, or basked upon its flowing rivers without any to molest or make afraid. In conscious pride of independence did the warrior stride through the primeval fields of nature in pursuit of the bison. There, and in the limped streams were his treasures, for his wants were few. Peace and plenty smiled around whilst unconscious of the commotions and changes which time was hurrying onward. Great sires and chiefs would be surrounded by their youths, relate the traditions of their fathers, recount their own exploits, and lead off the dance. Harmonious and joyful were the days of our ancestors, smooth as the gently flowing waters of the proud Savannah winding its course towards the Atlantic, along whose shores was seen the blue curling smoke ascending towards the heavens from the habitations of peace. The thought that ere a few more moons should pass away than the destroyer would have begun his ravages, entered not their peaceful minds. Columbus dreamed not of the awful fate which hover'd o'er the Nations he discovered. Little did he think that time so soon would have swept some away, without a remaining vestige, like a cloud driven before the wind. But so, even so, has it been. The barks of Albion with expanded sails rose on the waves and rushed through the foam of the deep. But the clouds gathered in the west, the skies lowered, the storm arose, the thunders bellowed, the lightnings played in awful grandeur. Thus was the ocean convulsed, for on her bosom rolled the death of thousands, and yet it was but a prelude to the furies of a distant day. At length the shores of America burst upon the crew, like a flood of light that rises in the East to the view of a traveller when he is sad in a dismal night, ' in a land unknown. Then was the civilized man a stranger here. But a full tide of emigration succeeded, and has since flowed from a foreign source, until, not only wigwams, villages, and towns, have been demolished, but many powerful Tribes have been driven back and diminished to a handful, while others have become extinct. Such has been the result of their acquaintance with the civilized man. With him came the glittering steel, the thunders of the cannon, and horrid devastations of warfare. There were seen the children of America retiring into the deep forest, while grief saddened around for fallen son's [sic] and brothers. With a sigh did they leave their loved shores where they were wont to behold in peace and rapture, surge after surge break against the rocks and receded into the fathomless deep. How truly unfortunate has your fate been, Oh! children of nature. America threw open her loving bosom and welcomed you to her flowery meads and fragrant groves, from the persecution and tyranny of the East, but your retreat has been discovered, at an hour when you were regaling on the sweets of liberty, and as the gale of quiet repose gently fanned you, the work of destruction was commenced! Oh! how much to be regretted that the hand of avarice, injustice, and oppression, has been employed. If it had been otherwise, over this extensive region the flash of a carabine [sic] would have never been seen, and the blood of innocence would never have moistened the earth. Confidence has been forfeited, and embittered prejudices planted. Years succeeded years, while conflicting circumstances only added fuel to the flame. Centuries have since rolled into the bosom of eternity. Powerful states, and splendid cities, have grown up where our primitive fathers once kindled their council fires, yet how often our thoughts travel through ages past and awaken the sympathies of our souls. I fancy that I see a venerable chief, his locks silvered o'er with the frosts of many winters, with a calumet of peace in his hand, seated on some river, wrapped in deep and pensive thought upon the misfortunes of his once powerful tribe, but now on the threshold of extinction. Depressed with sorrow, he throws back his thoughts to what he once was with the curses of his gods upon those who deprived him of the rights which he inherited from the God of nature.- With wild despair he is ready to plunge into the mighty waters and at once be no more, when lo! a voice in the melting accents of friendship sounds behind him, 'come hither! unfortunate brother, your afflictions are but momentary, although forlorn and forsaken, yet despair not, you have a friend who descended from the Heaven of Heavens to interpose in your behalf.' He looks, but behold it is the figure of a white man! with whom he has ever been taught to associate sentiments the most unfriendly. But hail! thou blessed messenger of light; after years of untiring zeal ' labour[sic] confidence is returning, and the genial influence of friendship has again swelled the breeze. An intellectual and moral sun-beam has pierced the wilderness with its resplendent rays and continues to shine with increasing effulgence. Ignorance has fallen prostrate at the shrine of instruction. Warriors have been humbled and christianized, while hunters have learned to delight in agriculture. The philanthropist cannot but smile when he looks around and sees the laudable efforts and success of the Cherokees in improvement, and contrasts their present condition with that of the dark and superstitious ages of our ancestors. With what accelerating strides are we approximating our neighbours [sic] both in a social and civil point of view. How pleasing it is to see aboriginal sons and daughters climbing together the hill of science. And thus may we proceed, step by step, in the path pointed to our view, by the illustrious Washington and Jefferson, until we arrive to a high summit of respectability and refinement, and prove the folly and weakness of those who cherish prejudices inimical to our situation, and make known to the world that the mind of a native child is highly susceptible of culture and improvement.
Sages and patriots have not thought it beneath their dignity to extend a hand of friendship, and raise the languid head of despair, while the fervent petitions of the good people of every denomination have been perpetually ascending to the courts above for our prosperity and welfare. And although our political sun has arisen in obscurity, may it go down with the blazing lustre of noon day; and may our Phoenix plume its feathers on the majestic Oostenahlee until the wilderness shall blossom as the rose, and the sons of the forest shall pluck their harps from the willows.