WASHINGTON AND THE CHEROKEES.
Monday, January 9, 1792
Bloody fellow. I shall explain myself fully and hide nothing from you.
When we were assembled at Astanolay, before we left our Nation, as I mentioned the other day, just as we began our business arrived Chinabee, the Chief of the Natchez, and of the Creek Nation, we were glad that he arrived at that moment, as he was sent by his Nation. He spoke to us, and said that he was glad to find us assembled, as he was sent by the Chiefs of his Nation with a talk to the President, recommending to him the Chiefs of the Cherokees who should go to Philadelphia. He said we are near neighbours [sic] and ought to be as one people. We have been to Congress and settled our business to our satisfaction; but you have still a deficiency; go then to Congress and have your affairs settled as our are.
He further desired us to believe what the President would say to us, and that he would attend to us because we were recommended by him (Chinabee) so that our children might grow up in peace, and that the red and white people should hereafter be as one.- Chinabee also said, I look upon the Cherokees as our elder brothers- I judge that they will be fully satisfied with the success of their journey- that upon their return I shall hear all this in a talk from them- and I shall come for that purpose.
Chinabee desired particularly, that we should say that Bowles' arrival had excited disturbances in the minds of the Creeks, who wished to know from the Creeks, who wished to know from General Washington, what authority Bowles had for this conduct. That this answer was earnestly requested upon our return, in order that the Creeks might know how to conduct themselves against Bowles in the affair. This is an important point, on which we desire full information.- This is all the talk from the Creeks, and as a proof of the truth of it, we give you a string of beads from them in token of their friendship.
[ Bloody fellow then presented the Secretary of War with a single string of white Wampum.]
Hear now the talk from the Chickasaw and Choctaw Nations! This talk was brought by Chenowie and another Chickasaw, and two Choctaws, who came together to Tatokie, or the town of the springs, below Chickamaga, on the Tennessee, in the month of September last.- They said:
'We were sorry our elder brothers, that we could not come while you were setting upon business with Governoy [sic] Blount, but we were informed of the matter too late. But understanding that you are about setting out for General Washington, we desire, that he would hear what you should say in our behalf, and on your return we will again attend upon you to learn the news.'
'Tell General Washington, that the Carolina people ought not to be appointed to hold talks with the Indians, as they always ask for land, and that we desire a person to be appointed by him who will not ask for our lands, but do justice to the white and red people. We have proved that we have regarded General Washington's words- and we now desire, that he will make the white people equally quiet, and not breed disturbances.' Here ends the talk of the Chickasaws and Choctaws, which is confirmed by this string of beeds.[sic]
[The Bloody fellow then presented a string of white Wampum] and said:
Nantuaka returned from General Washington, two years ago, he sent good talks to all the nations, of the kindness with which he was treated, and of the intentions of General Washington to do justice to the red people about their lands. We hope General Washington has not forgotten the good talks to Nontuaka, we desire nothing more.
Having now fully explained my business, I will tell you what our beloved men and warriors told us when we left our country.
They told us to make haste, to finish our business and to return as soon as possible, so that by fully informing them of the good dispositions of General Washington, measures might be taken to restrain the young warriors, whose minds are greatly disturbed by the proceedings of last summer.
The Kingfisher. We have fully explained every thing- I am witness to it-I hope all things will be finished well; I have never been for spedding [sic] blood of our elder brothers, and I hope we shall always live in peace and friendship.
The Bloody fellow. We now mention a small circumstance for your consideration. A young man by the name of George who is now with us, and who served your troops, has complained to us, that he never received any pay, think of this.
We earnestly entreat, that General Washington would now send a man with us who shall protect us in our lands and be our friend; and who will explain all things, and at all times.- He shall reside with us and we will take care of him. If two men were now to be sent it would be better than one.
Nontuaka. I have attended to the talks of the President, delivered two years ago in New York, and always believing in his words, I have persuaded our warriors to repair again to the President, knowing we should have justice done us fully; and it makes my heart glad to find myself under the roof of my friend who treated me so kindly when in New York.
We are now here, and have explained ourselves upon our business- I hope all things will be done to our satisfaction, and that we shall be sent away with good news, so that all our people may be made glad upon our return home.
[The Chiefs having thus explained themselves, it was agreed that they should meet the Secretary of War, at his house on Wednesday the 11th instant, to receive his answer.]