Cherokee Phoenix


Published January, 25, 1834

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The act of the Legislature of Georgia, which was published to day, in addition to those heretofore passed, for the expulsion of the Cherokees from their lands, carries upon its own face, the evidence of another avaricious edict to overflow the cup of its iniquity. The pernicious operations of these several acts, we have often commented and pointed out, but the latter, without exception, subverts the dearest property of the Indian-his personal right-it is a clincher. The former acts over this subject compelled the white men connected with the Indians, to swear allegiance to the State, and become white men. This act requires them to assume the Indian rights, by means of registering their names in a clerk's book. Of the Indian improvements, those on lots other than where his house stands, are to be granted to the drawer, to enable them, we presume, to dog the Indian from his improvement. The lot embracing the residences of the Indians is yet reserved. The employment of white men or black men, as tenants, millwrights, 'c. are prohibited under the penalty of forfeiture of lots. The authority which would pass such laws over a people unrepresented, must undoubtedly aim at the expulsion of the party on whom it is to operate, founded as it is on the most glaring principles of injustice. But such acts over our suffering race, have become so common, and in full keeping with the character of the State, it is useless for us to remark further on this subject. A free representative assembly that can reconcile the passage of such law to honor and conscience, deserves more than the long curse of Laurence Sterne. The appalling night of injustice has descended, and while we are thus maltreated on this stage of political corruption; let the scene be finished at once-prohibit the Indian from speaking to the white man.- Let Governor Lumpkin order the Cherokees into his fame (alias) lottery wheel, draw for them, and those that may be found unfit, let his Excellency, wipe the sharp dagger across their necks, and his justice will not be less tarnished.


The extract from the report of the Secretary of War to the President, which will be found in this paper, on Indian Affairs, and especially in relation to the Cherokees of this Nation, avows principles identically with those which we have claimed, and the observance of which we have so often called on the Government. Mr. Cass clearly states in this report, that a change of relations has not been effected by the Government, with the Cherokees, for their removal west of the Mississippi. What are those relations which the Secretary here acknowledges as unchanged? It must be those which have been established by numerous treaties, in which the United States solemnly guarantee to the Cherokee Nation the integrity of their territory; and by other special acts of Congress the intrusion of white persons are positively prohibited. When the Cherokees heretofore had respectfully and earnestly called on this administration for the fulfillment in good faith those treaties, the doctrine has been set up, as the ground of refusal, that State jurisdiction had change them. Now, the passage to which we have referred, in our opinion, recognized in the amplest manner, without the least qualifications the existence of relations between the Cherokees and the United States, and the only inference is, are those of the treaties. So much then has been conceded by the administration of its doctrines as to correspond to the decisions of the Supreme Court. After this admission, we cannot imagine the ground on which the Secretary can predicate a refusal to execute his treaties with us, save that which no republic should be accused- the often trodden ground of faithlessness.



The settlement of the Cherokee country by this people, have been frequently stated by us, as in opposition to the decision of competent tribunals both of State and Federal Governments. Consequently our labors have been confined to the relation of minor occurrences in the progress of these people over our country; as nothing could be added from our pen in discussing the question of rights, to the decision of the Supreme Court. Since the entry of the Georgians on our lands, a village has sprung up at the gold mines, named by them, Auraria, composed chiefly of miners, for taking the gold of the Cherokees. During the occurrence of the phenomena of meteors, the day of retribution and judgement of God were seen by these intruders descending upon them; and simultaneously, repentance and prayer were offered to the God of justice, for the remission of their sins, in the following manner: We pray unto thee O God to forgive us our sins; we have knowingly sinned against thee in depriving the Indians of their just rights; we know this is Indian land, and knew we were sinning greatly in thy sight, in the treatment of these people. As the fire from Heaven brightened, the praying sinners became louder in every part of the village until day-light; but finding themselves still in the land of the living, the object of taking gold became a paramount duty. A deeper rooted evil and guilt in these people at the same time, has never been displayed then on this occasion. The decisions of just men has been disregarded; but the manifestations of God's displeasure can crush the wicked, and command justice; we fervently hope He will uphold our righteous cause in his own good time.