Cherokee Phoenix


Published July, 27, 1833

Page 3 Column 4b


C. N. 21st July, 1833

Mr. Editor:- I have for the last ten years, seen the doing of Uncle Sam as he is proudly named, to the Indian tribes. At first, I thought it was a mere ruse de politique of those who contended that a people confessedly aboriginal only had an usufruct right to their national soil; finding however that honest Uncle Sam spurns contemptuously such imputations, I have looked a little into Raleigh, Hackney, and others, to see how they understood the matter, and if possible, learn the meaning of these high-sounding words, equity, equality, indefensible, and unalienable, as applied by such fellows as Madison, Jefferson, 'c. The result of my inquiries, is that they knew nothing at all about the matter, and although the Cherokees ' other Nations, have held their present residence from a time which 'the memory of man passeth not,' and that too, from long before Uncle Sam, or Uncle John Bull, either, were ever heard of, still this makes no difference all these

aboriginals are tenants, 'in soccage and not in capite' according to the decree of King James, made when he sent out a band of buccaneers to pilfer in the name of royalty. I have not been able to find precisely what are the services they are bound to perform, because I can find no deed or contract between the parties, on which his Majesty could have predicted his charter, but I presume, from the manner in which the present lords of the Manor conduct themselves, that the natives are obliged to clear and fence lands, build comfortable houses, such as Ross's and Springplace, 'c. drive off all the varmint, and then give up these improvements to some of our Uncle's needy sons. You will perhaps think me mistaken here, and tell me to look at the dozen or fifteen treaties which have been made expressly to define these matters. I have read every one of them together with President Washington, Monroe, Adams, yes, and Old Hickory's talk with Ridge. But that's all nothing, not of any account, these were a mere humbug intended to gull the public and tie up the arms of the Indians. Perhaps you doubt this; it is however as true as that the Paxton boys broke the jail and murdered some Moravian Indians, put there for safety in the old French War; or that a fellow called Col. Williamson, and others murdered about an hundred of the same Indians in the old Revolution, or that Spring-place, the oldest Missionary establishment in this nation, has been seized by a set of vagabonds, and converted into a tippling establishment; or_______ but this is enough. Some indeed have expressed astonishment that Uncle Sam will be, as he certainly has been, guilty of littleness of holding these lands under the grant of King James, whilst he denies that, and all other monarch's title to any part of this continent, and throws whole volumes out in defence of equality of rights, unalienable rights, paramount law, treaties, 'c.

This is even true also, and the astonishment of these boobies arise from hence, they do not perceive the vast difference between meum et tuum; they do not inquire into the cuiboni of the matter. King James verily did issue his patent under the broad seal of the Empire of Britain, in which patent he granted away vast tracts of land, including the Cherokees, which he had never seen and almost doubted their entity, to be held as part, and parcel of his royal majesty's manor of E. Greenwich. On, and by virtue of this same grant his successor took on several pranky moods some years ago, such as arrogating to himself the command in certain matters; occasionally putting his lion's paw in Johnathan's (sic) pocket, 'c. but the young rowdy seized his daddy by his venerable beard, and cut it off with his jack-knife; and he uses this same beard of his old father as a flag, when he wished to rally his bows for a row at sea or land, at this present day. Lest the boy in his impertinent pet should further abuse the old man, he gave up his right to all that part of the manor of Greenwich west of the Atlantic. It is time Jonathan had driven the old man out and denied his title to it in toto, but he was then in a great rage and did not mind his P's and Q's. On reflection, he has allowed King James' title and under it claims the whole aboriginal country,and that he will have it may be inferred from the fact that he has seized some how or other all the lands of all the Nations from Maine to Florida, and out far in the West. It is all folly to jabber and quibble with him about right; he understands meum et tuum; he wants these lands and will have them.

Now this being the case, and the Atlantic being nearest, it is foolish in the Indians to plod so far over the swamps infested by troops of alligators and clouded by swarms of mosquitos, to find a pond large enough to drown themselves, for nothing else can satisfy Uncle Sam's family but the total extinction of Indians, and the sequestration of their estates, so I advise them and you too, sir, to pack up parch corn enough to last you to Apalachy (sic) bay, or the mouth of Oakmulgee, call in the first penniless vagabond, each one of you can see, surrender to him all our worldly gear, and move off to the sea, jump in head-foremost and creep down the throat of the first marine monster you can find. If you will put this in practice, I think it likely that Congress will appropriate a whole quarter section of land to rear a monument to your memory, and another to have your funeral requiem sung in the Capital; it is also probable, that Old Hickory might issue a laudatory proclamation on the subject. In fault of all these, you may be sure of plenty of whiskey 'c. on the way, and no opposition, especially, if you can persuade Dr. Butler, and Mr. Worcester, Clauder and the rest of the Missionaries, to lead you to the jumping off place.

Now Mr. Editor, I entreat that you will not deceive yourselves, by specious appearances. You may suppose some amelioration will ensue from Missionary attempts to civilize and Christianize Indians. Do you not know that it is held as an axiom that our Indians cannot be civilized, cannot be taught science, 'c. Have you not seen the destruction or sequestration of all the Missionary stations in Georgia and among the Choctaws, and many other places for years past. The thing is plain. These establishments are tolerated, and in some sort supported, wherever it is thought useful to keep Indians quiet, to amuse them with a prospect of rising in the moral scale; but as soon as more land is wanted, no matter where, or which tribe, or in what situation, they must go; their missionaries are imprisoned, insulted by law, cats-paws and minions; their persons abused, motives traduced, and their labors destroyed. This has been the course for half a century; it is now, and will hereafter be the course of conduct pursued to them, and to the Indians. There is but one other efficient course to save the Indians, and that is almost hopeless, but would certainly be useful not only to Indians, but to all Uncle Sam's family. It is to select out three or four dozen such fellows as the Gov. of Georgia, and those who hold his notions of justice, honor, humanity, and law, and put them in the care of some such teacher as Black Hawk, to learn lessons on these subjects, and then to restore them to their stations. Or perhaps it might not be amiss to establish a lecturer of the Winebagoes at Washington to teach the great ones how to give the quid pro quo.