Cherokee Phoenix


Published April, 17, 1833

Page 2 Column 5b


The National Gazette contains a communication on this subject, in which is attempted to be shown that the bloody bill cannot be made applicable to the Cherokee case. For some reason or other, we cannot conceive what the Gazette countenances the same idea. We do not wish to charge the Gazette with an attempt at deception, but does not the Gazette know what is well known here and elsewhere that the sections referred to were introduced, we might almost say, expressly for the purpose of being applied to the Georgia case. It was soon known that it was intended for them to be so applied, and whatever doubts might have been entertained upon the subject were soon removed by the Indian delegation. They indirectly refused to sell, although the government made them an offer of two million and a half, and would have gone to three million. We are not sure but that three millions were offered. Has the Gazette never heard that it was with difficulty the President could be got to sign the bill? The truth is, the administration was outwitted. They discovered it, but not until it was too late. The President gave himself up, bound hand and foot, to his new friends, and they had not the least compassion for him.

But what will Georgia do when the mandate of the Supreme Court comes? Will she acknowledge her sins, repent and obey? Will she look to the White House for countenance and forbearance? In vain! The proclamation stares her in the face. Will she look to her Union and proclamation men-her advocates of the bloody bill, her Forsyths and her Waynes? It will be needless. They have sold her to the Philistines, and shortly hope to receive the price of their treachery. Will she look to the Union men of the adjoining States? Alas! their cry is submit! submit! The law of Congress must be executed!

[U. S. Telegraph.]


Extract of a letter from the 'Spy in Washington'

WASHINGTON, D.C.- March 18, 1833.

Sir:- It is not my general habit to notice the remarks which are made on my letters. But the Intelligencer of Monday contains an article from the National Gazette which claims attention. The object of the writer appears to be twofold. First to show that no section of the enforcing bill can, in any manner affect the case of the Cherokees in relation to their lands. And second, that as the law referred to does not affect the case, no difficulties can have arisen calculated to interrupt the then pending negotiation of a treaty between the Cherokees and the Government.

I entertain a profound respect for the author of the article under consideration who is a distinguished jurist. It is from the pen of Judge Hopkinson of Pennsylvania. This respect forbids that I should comment upon what I consider the cavalier if not dogmatic style of the Judge's production. His honor will pardon me, however, when I say that as he is evidently mistaken, only in the argument relating to the technicalities of the case. The facts are, as stated. Difficulties had arisen and the negotiation, as I anticipated, was broken off abruptly. No treaty was concluded. Since the passage of the Enforcing Bill, the Cherokees have advanced in their demands for compensation.

I do not intend through your paper or elsewhere to argue a law point with his honor the Judge. But I think he will find after more minute examination that the bill changes the character of the Cherokee case. May it not be, that although the Supreme Court of the United States had no original, yet that they may have appellate jurisdiction! May not the Cherokees, as individuals, under this bill commence their suit in the State Courts of Ga. and then appeal to the United States Court?- Could they have made such an appeal without the record previous to the passage? But I feel myself warranted in stating to his Honor that the counsel for the Indians, Mr. Wirt, was consulted previous to the passage of the bill, on the particular section referred to, and he supposed that it would cover the case of his clients. I do not assert, but I believe it to be so, that Mr Wirt drafted the section himself. Whether this be true, or not, I take leave to refer the Hon Judge Hopkinson for further explanations, to the learned Counsel.


From the Washington Globe.

We would not have noticed the silly trash of the New York Spy, about the operation of the Revenue Collection Bill upon the Cherokee country, had we not seen that in respectable prints, his statement was considered worthy of refutation. The National Gazette has correctly said there is no case depending, and given its views of the effect of the act upon this matter. But the whole subject, and all the assertions concerning it are unworthy serious examination of the law.

The 4th and 5th sections are those, which it is said, will operate on the Cherokee question, and constitute the trap in which the President is kindly supposed to have caught himself. Let us see. The 4th section simply provides for the removal of the record or case from the State Court to that of the United States. With this of course the Executive has no concern. His interposition can never be required for the act expressly defines the mode in which the omission shall be supplied. If the State Court fails to send the record.

The fifth section is the one which authorizes the employment of military force, but unfortunately for the truth of all those bug-bear stories, this section is limited in its operation to the end of the next Session of Congress. Now independently of the very conclusive review taken in the National Gazette, of the impossibility of the Cherokees maintaining a suit in the Supreme Court of the United States, it is sufficient to say, that no case involving those questions exists in any Court whatever. Grant the Supreme Court the most ample jurisdiction over this whole subject, and grant what the Court has expressly disclaimed, the right of the Cherokees to appear before them, everyone who knows anything of judicial proceedings knows it is impossible to institute a suit in one of the State Courts, to carry it to the highest Court of law or equity of the State, whence only in all cases, except those relating to the revenue, it can be removed, and from there to the Supreme court of the United States, procure a final judgment thereon; have process issued; the execution thereof obstructed; the proceedings thereon directed by the statute take place, the facts reported to the President; the proclamation issuing the obstruction to be removed; a neglect or refusal to comply with such a proclamation, and then call out the military under this law, before the end of the next Session of Congress. All these must be done before the President could interfere. It is not pretended that in any of the intermediate stages of the proceedings force would be interposed to obstruct the process. And when all that is done, if it ever should be done, we presume the President would look at his constitutional duty, and examine the whole matter under the Constitution and laws.

We hope we have said enough to allay all the apprehensions of those who have in such a spirit of amity, conjured up this phantom to trouble the country.