Cherokee Phoenix


Published March, 3, 1830

Page 4 Column 3b


The following communication is from a source entitled to the highest confidence. It is copied from the hand writing of the witness ' agrees with all that we have heard of Mr. Jefferson's opinions on the subject to which it relates.-N. Y. Obs.

On the morning of the 31st of May, 1824, I spent about an hour with the late Thomas Jefferson, at his own Monticello. Having then recently been in Georgia and heard much said on the Cherokee question. I delicately inquired his opinions on that subject. In my journal I find the following memorandum of our conversation about it. He is decidedly opposed to the Georgia claim, says she is the most greedy state in the Union, that the Indians are under no obligation to sell their lands, that they have an original title to them, that we have guarantied this title, and that the Indians are indisposed to sell them.

' I well remember the emphasis with which he remarked: She has always been the most greedy of land of any state in the Union.'

'I inquired respecting the obligation intended to be imposed on the federal government, by the compact of 1802. He replied, in substance, that when he signed that compact, he had no idea that this government was any farther obligated thereby, than to purchase the Cherokee lands when the Indians became disposed to sell them at a reasonable price.'