Cherokee Phoenix


Published July, 16, 1831

Page 3 Column 1b-4a



We hope (a Cherokee word) will excuse us for detaining his communication so long. We shall endeavor to get it in next week.



The persecution now progressing against the missionaries seems to be unrelenting, which proves to our mind that the law of Georgia against white men was particularly intended for them. The object of the legislature was to get them our of the country because it would have been too outrageous to effect this without some pretense, the act requiring an oath of allegiance was passed, with which it must have been known, the missionaries, as conscientious men, could not comply. This being the case, it was supposed the only alternative left them to avoid the penalty of the law was to remove and to leave their Churches and Schools. But as some of them have thought proper not to do even that, they are dragged about as felon, and are to shut up in the Penitentiary for a term not less than four years. 'Law enforced to strictness sometimes becomes the severest injustice.' Such is this act of Geo. It is the height of injustice when enforced in the mildest manner. But what will it be said when the present proceedings are ahead of that law? when acts are committed which no man in his senses will say they are in accordance with the law? The following is to the point:

The Rev. Mr. McLeod, superintendent of the Methodist Missions in this Nation, and not residing within the Georgia charter, lately returned from a visit to Tennessee. He merely passed this part of the nation a few weeks since, on his way to Creek Path to fill an appointment previously made. On his way back to the Tennessee side of the Nation, where we believe he has generally made his stay, when but a few miles from Mount Wesley, he met the Guard conducting Messrs. Worcester and Trott to their head quarters. He was arrested by them, ordered to dismount from his horse and take the line of march with the other prisoners.- Mr. Wells, stationed at Chattooga, was with Mr. McLeod, and was about to be taken also, but on making proper representation as to his location, he was permitted to go on his way if he thought proper. He followed on, however, leading Mr. McLeod's horse, supposing he would be released as soon as he got to Camp Gilmer, as others have been who were arrested under similar circumstances.

Now under what law, under what provision of any law was Mr. McLeod arrested, and compelled to walk fifty or sixty miles? It becomes the good people of Georgia to see to these things. There are many in that state, we have not the least doubt, who advocated the extension of the laws over the Indians, who would deprecate such measures, if they were but properly informed of what is going on.

We wish to say a few words on another point. The State of Georgia is a Christian State--Its laws are founded on Christian principles, and the Governor, we suppose, is at least a nominal Christian. The Superiority of Christian laws over the rest of the world consists in their mildness.- The guilty are punished not in any way which may partake of cruelty, but in mercy. It is therefore, in the constitution of Georgia, most properly made the duty of the Governor to execute the laws in mercy. It has appeared to us, however, in some of the circumstances we have related in the execution of the Georgia laws over this nation, that there has been exhibited too much of a vindictive spirit. The case of Mr. Worcester was certainly one which demanded, at least, forbearance and that mercy which the Governor has in his oath promised to observe. He could not have removed without leaving his wife on a bed of sickness. His circumstances were known to the Guard, who we have reason to believe were disposed to be forbearing. His arrest, at this time, we are told, was founded on a direct order from the Governor for that purpose. The case, also, of the Cherokee we noticed last week as being under arrest, shows in what spirit Georgia laws are executed. It is said they found him digging gold, and when they were about to take him he took a gun to defend himself. After he was induced or made to lay that by, he took his knife. For this he was severely beaten on the head with a stick. On this part of the story we have nothing to say. But after he was in the power of the Guard--completely in their hands--when it was impossible that he could do them injury, he was chained to a wagon, and in that situation compelled to travel when they left Ooligillogee. This is the information we have received.

Messrs. Worcester ' Butler are probably now in the jail of Gwinnett County, to await their trial at the next Superior Court. They will not think it worth while, we suppose, to give bail, as that would give them no security against another arrest. Look at the case of Mr. Trott. It is even reported here that Governor Gilmer has ordered his agent, that if Mr. Worcester gives aid and crosses the Chattahoochy River on his return to his family, to have him again immediately arrested. That, however, makes no difference, as the case of Mr. Trott renders it certain that he would again be taken.

Since the foregoing was written, information has reached this place that Mr.McLeod, as we supposed, was discharged at the station.

It seems too that Mr. Wells, who is said above to have been in company with Mr. McLeod, received a severe blow with a stick from the hands of the Commanding officer. What the crime was we have not particularly understood.


Our neighbors, we perceive, are reviving their old argument, which we thought was nearly forgotten, viz: That the Cherokees ought to be removed beyond the Mississippi, because they are so wretched and can never be reclaimed where they are. The scarcity of provisions among us at this time they believe is a sufficient evidence that we are sinking fast, and their bowels of compassion are moved on our account. We lately published extracts from a communication of a Georgian, giving a wretched description of our wants. The public have been refreshed with other accounts of a like nature.- We will state fairly the argument of these wise and compassionate men. The Cherokees were a wretched people in the year 1830; they are far more so in 1831- some of them of both sexes are nearly naked and as nearly starved, several families having been known which was not so a year ago, to subsist for three weeks on sap and roots: therefore the Cherokees are deteriorating. As the argument goes they will be worse off a year hence that they are at present. Now we are very willing to meet them on this ground.- We are willing the whole question should turn upon this point. Let the coming year decide the matter. We will admit what has been said of our condition-we will admit that we are suffering for provisions, and that many are nearly starved and some compelled to sustain life by subsisting upon sap and roots, and that if our condition is not improved a year hence it will be a sufficient evidence that we are deteriorating, and that we ought to be removed. On the other hand, if our affairs should be considerably improved, and if we should about that period be well supplied with provisions, it will demonstrably prove that we are not sinking, but sensibly rising from our degraded state, and therefore, as the argument is, we ought not to remove to the west of the Mississippi. - According to this mode of reasoning we have the most cheering prospect of a complete triumph. Notwithstanding the trouble, anxiety and disturbances occasioned by the whites, the people throughout the nation generally have used more than common industry in cultivating their farms, and there is now at this time a prospect of fine crops. If kind providence shall continue to grant us as good season as we have enjoyed, there will be more corn raised this year in the Cherokee Nation than at any other time since its existence.

We beg our compassionate friends, therefore, not to put their benevolent purposes into effect right away, but to permit us a little longer to subsist on sap and roots. We are endeavoring to procure something more substantial. But if, with the aid of providence, we shall fail, we will then go to a land flowing with milk and honey, where, we presume, our kind friends intend we should have everything to our hearts content without any exertion on our part.



It is said the Georgia Guard have received orders, from the Governor we suppose, to inflict corporeal punishment on such females as shall hereafter be guilty of insulting them. We presume they are to be the judges of what constitutes insult. We will simply give our opinion upon this subject. According to our understanding of insult, we think, first, it is very undignified for a female to exercise it under any circumstances; and second, it is equally undignified for any gentleman to inflict a corporeal punishment on a female who may be guilty of such a crime.


WAR ! WAR !!

Our last Washington papers contain a fierce and warlike correspondence between two members of the late Cabinet-John H. Eaton, Ex. Secretary of War. and S. D. Ingham, Ex. Secretary of the Treasury. In a note dated Friday June 7th, Mr. Eaton calls upon Mr. I. to sanction or disavow a certain expression relating to his wife which had appeared in the Telegraph. Mr. Ingham replies that Mr. E. must be somewhat deranged if he supposed that any of his blustering could induce him [Ingham]to deny what all the inhabitants of the city knew, and half of the people of the U. States believe to be true. Mr. Eaton then sends a challenge to Mr. Ingham, which the latter refuses to accept, and closes his [Ingham] note thus:

'I am not to be intimidated by threats, or provoked by abuse, to any act inconsistent with the pity and contempt which your condition and conduct inspire.'

Then follows a note from Mr. Eaton. As a specimen of the kind of feeling existing between some of the Great men at Washington we publish it entire.

'Sir- Your note of this morning is received. It proves to me that you are quite brave enough to do a mean action, but too great a coward to repair it. Your contempt I heed not; your pity I despise. It is such contemptible fellows as yourself that have set forth rumors of their own creation and taken them as a ground of imputation against me. If that be good cause, then should you have pity on yourself, for your wife has not escaped them, and you must know it,- But no more; here our correspondence closes. Nothing more will be received short of an acceptance of my demand of Saturday, and nothing more be said by me until face to face we meet. It is not in my nature to brook your insults, nor will they be submitted to.


S.D. Ingham, Esq.

But this is not all-the very next day, June 21st Mr. Ingham addressed a letter to the President, charging Mr. Eaton and sundry of his friends with an attempt to way-lay him for the purpose, as he believed of ASSASSINATION! This, however, is denied by those against whom the charge is brought. In a letter addressed to the Harrisburg Reporter, an administration paper, the statements in regard to this affair agree with those made by Mr. Ingham. The letter closes thus-

'Thus the war ceased for the day, but the report now is, that the failure has caused new mortification and that arrangements are making to assassinate Mr. Ingham on the road, within the line of the district. Be not uneasy for Mr. Ingham. He will be well armed, and well supported by trusty friends. He has nothing to fear but from a surprise, and will take effectual precautions against that. You will see the correspondence, which has been the ostensible cause of this proceeding in the Telegraph. The state of things here is shocking.'

We perceive that Col. Tawson accompanied Mr. Ingham to Baltimore. So far has this war progresses-but this cannot be the end of it. Mr. Ingham has made serious charges against Mr. Eaton and his friends.- Those charges are denied, and something more will have to come out.


A late political price current states 'that the Cherokees are about to petition Congress to remove the Georgians from the State, as the Cherokees have the oldest grant of the soil. The Georgians obtained their grant from King George, in the 8th (sic) century; whereas the Cherokees obtained theirs from King Adam, in the year 1st.