Cherokee Phoenix


Published May, 18, 1833

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NEW ECHOTA, MAY 18, 1833

In another part of this paper will be found one of the laws of Georgia said to be enacted for the special purpose of protecting the remnant or the Cherokee Indians in the peaceable possession and occupation of their improvements within Georgia. We intended to have given this extraordinary law an insertion at an early time but unavoidable circumstances prevented. It is not our intention to enter into a detailed commentary of the injustice of this law to the Cherokees, as well as of others to which it has a reference, but largely to remark on the unprecedented principle on which the legislation of Georgia on the rights of the Cherokees is predicated. The lots occupied by the Indians which this act processes to protect, recognizes no title to the Indian occupant; but obviously reserved to the Indians, as permissive occupants, at the will of the State. The compact of Georgia, with the General Government recognizes a title to the lands to belong to the Indians. The Constitution of Georgia prohibits the laying off of new counties west of the Chattahoochy on lands encumbered with the Indian title. The treaties of the government to which Georgia is a party recognizes a title. The superior and inferior courts of Georgia have recognized the Cherokee title-yet in direct contravention to these existing authorities, her own obligations, the legislature have by a sweeping act disinherited the Cherokees, robbed our rising generation from a participation of our lands, and under the garb of magnanimity of permitting the Indian to stay at his own home, placing him on the same footing of citizenship of a Georgian 'says' the Indians must not testify in a Georgia court, nor letters of administration shall be granted by the property of any deceased Indian. The law of 1830 to which this act makes a reference likewise prohibits the Indians from selling one to another the improvements which they have made with the labor of their own hands, their industry, and during their protracted oppression. This is what we feel to be grasping from us the unalienable rights of free men, and depriving the Cherokees of their personal rights of purchasing from each other improvements made on their lands. This is but a sketch, which we have thought proper to lay before our readers, of the inabilities of which we are rendered by the laws of Georgia. Americans so tenacious of liberty-what think ye of this Algerine and most cruel legislation? We hold your bond for the security of this property, and the continuance of a good neighborhood.



It will be recollected in 1831 the Rev. H. Clauder missionary of the Moravians stationed in this vicinity, with a flourishing school, and a prosperous church, was arrested by the Georgia Guard, and ten days given him to remove without Georgia, which he was compelled to do; and after leaving a valuable improvements returned to the society in Salem N. C. Mr. Clauder was again sent out by the society to Spring Place, to supersede the Rev. G. Byhan and the appointment of Post Master at that place. The appointment placed him under the protection of the Gen. Government, and seemed to secure his residence as a missionary there, without the molestation of the Georgia authorities. But it appears that the learned Georgians are wretchedly behind that of the Roman notions of justice, they have not the 'perpetual will of doing right' they surveyed the Cherokee country, placed Mr. C. in a lot with a respectable Indian, drew for it, then granted by the Governor ' the worthy missionary with his Post Office commission driven off from a valuable improvement by the drawer, and utterly destroying two missionary stations in the Cherokees of the United Brethren. The national government have a character to sustain and it is with that government to see her own citizens protected from this persecution of usurpers.

Again: at Ellijay an industrious Indian had by his steady habits improved his premises to be of considerable value, when it was drawn by one of the lottery gamblers in Georgia. The fortunate drawer gathered up his all, including some two or three pistols, and moved to the Cherokee country, loaded his pistols entered the possession of Ootawhensia pointing one at him and drove the innocent Cherokee from his well cultivated field and was without a home the last account we had.

The Cherokee are doomed to suffer.

The following extract of Wilson Lumpkin's letter.

When a member of Congress to the written (sic) of this article will show the sudden revolution of his feelings towards the Cherokees and how faithless are the words of the white man to the Indians:


'For as a member of Congress, I hope you will not think me too assuming when I say-I consider myself bound to attend to the interest of the Indians in a peculiar manner-and especially those within the limits of Georgia.'


We omitted to state in our last, the passage near this place about three weeks since, two companies of U. S. troops from Augusta and Savannah on their way to Tennessee in the Cherokee country, when they are at present removing intruders, and burning their improvements. Would it not be a humane policy for the government to remove such poor dependents on the Cherokee lands west of the Mississippi. In such a measure it would be truly benevolent and laudable; the sterile plains of the west might be made to blossom as the rose incur less expense, and abandon the consummate foolery offer to oppressing the aboriginal inhabitants ' that with the cloak of humanity colonizing them west of the Mississippi.