Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

ieading representations, undertaken to sell to Bensoň, Livingston and others a large tract of their lands, and the protest refers to the sale to Benson and his associates, and alleges this as a further reason against the treaty. Pages 646, 651, 704, 705, 767.

The Indians even threatened to interfere by force with the surveyors sent upon the land, and to appeal to the congress of the United States by whose authority their title had been guaranteed. Pages 715, 721-729.

There were similar difficulties with the Onondagas on account of a treaty which the state had shortly before, in 1788, concluded with them.

Accordingly the commissioners of the state found it necessary to btain confirmation of these treaties by adequate authority. Messages were sent out and the sachems and chiefs of the Onondagas and Cayugas were requested to attend at Fort Schuyler (formerly known at Fort Stanwix) on 1st June, 1790. Captain Joseph Brant, a very celebrated chief of the Mohawks, was notified to attend at the same time, apparently on account of the influence which he possessed over Fish Carrier and his western followers. There was some delay in the proceedings owing to the deliberations of the Indians who had been summoned, and it appears by the commissioners' minntes that on 7th June messengers arrived from the Cayugas residing at Buffalo Creek, and from Chief Brant and the Mohawks residing at the Grand River, stating that the Cayugas and Mohawks were on their way to the treaty and asking whether the commissioners would await their coming. The governor answered that they would wait. Pages 675-678.

The Indians having arrived, subsequent negotiations led to the confirmatory treaty described as made at Fort Stanwix, which was executed on 22nd June, 1790, and which, save for an additional payment of $1,000 as a “benevolencedoes nothing more than confirm the treaty of 1789. The “benevolence” was evidently paid to recoup the representatives of the nation who were not present at the treaty of 1789 for their share of the money then paid and which the Indians who executed the latter treaty had appropriated to themselves. Pages 694-712, 702, 707.

It may be convenient now to summarize briefly the terms of these treaties.

By the treaty of 1789:

The Cayugas ceded and granted to the state of New York all their lands, thus surrendering to the state the aboriginal title. The state reconveyed definite portions of the lands so ceded to

an

the Cayugas and their posterity forever, and thus vested in them in respect of the lands so reconveyed, a title unrestricted except as to alienation. The Cayugas and their posterity were accorded liunting and fishing rights over all the ceded lands. The state paid upon execution of the treaty $500 in silver, and agreed to pay $1,625 on 1st June, 1790, and also $500 per annum to the Cayugas and their posterity forever. Peter Ryckman,

s adopted child” of the Cayugas, was granted a square mile of land; and in addition, of an area of 16,000 acres therein described, the state granted 320 acres to a white person married to a daughter of an Onondaga named Thạnoewas, and the residue to the said Peter Ryckman. A square mile of the reserved lands was appropriated

Fish Carrier for the separate use of himself and his family forever. Pages 102, 636.

By the treaty of 1790, to which is annexed the treaty of 1789, the latter treaty is recited, ratified and confirmed, and payment is acknowledged of the sums thereby agreed to be paid down, and of tlie additional “benevolence" of $1,000. This treaty is executed by many sachems, chiefs and warriors, and Captain Joseph Brant subscribed as a witness. Pages 105, 712.

On 17th June, 1790, Fish Carrier, on behalf of the Cayugas, suggested to Governor Clinton that a portion of the reserved land should be sold to individuals. The governor answered that “we have no right nor are we disposed to interfere if some of you choose to reside in one place and others in another; but while any of you wish to continue at your ancient place of residence we cannot consistent with justice, dispose of any of the lands comprised in the reservation.” It would thus appear that even so early as the time of the negotiations for the treaty of 1790, the Cayugas were contemplating further sales.

It was these reserved lands, except only the two areas of two miles square and one mile square, which were purchased by the state in 1795; and it may be observed here that these two excepted parcels were also purchased by the state in 1807.

In 1791 Fish Carrier and his followers were in Canada. They seem afterwards to have entertained Some doubts as to how their title would be regarded by the state, for it appears that Fish Carrier caused his friend Brant, who was an Indian of

[ocr errors]

16 tion.

“writing the above the Kayugas have had a council and resolved

to send to the Legislature to know how far their rights extend to “the reservation, that an end may be put to their doubts.”

On 27th June, 1792 (American State Papers, Indian Affairs, Vol. 1, page 237), the Secretary of War wrote to the Governor of New York :-“He(Brant) “appears anxious that his friend the "Fish Carrier of the Cayugas, may be satisfied about their reserva

I have informed him that this affair is entirely under "Your Excellency's direction, who, I was persuaded would do

everything in your power to accord to the reasonable desires of “the Fish Carrier and his people.”

On 17th July, 1792, General Israel Chapin, the United States Superintendent of Indian Affairs, wrote to the Secretary of War-(American State Papers, Indian Affairs, Vol. 1, page 241)--and in 28th July, 1892, (page 243 of the same volume) Brant wrote to Governor Clinton, asking that justice be done among the Cayugas and Onondagas in respect of their reservations.

The position then conceded by the United States as affecting even the aboriginal Indian title, including that of hostile Indians, dictated doubtless by reasons of manifest expediency, is stated in the instructions given to Governor Putnam by the Secretary of War in 1792 (American State Papers, Indian Affairs, Vol. 1, page 234) as follows :-“You will make it clearly understood that we “want not a foot of their land, and that it is theirs, and theirs “only; that they have the right to sell and the right to refuse to

sell, and that the United States will guarantee to them their said “just rights."

On 12th October, 1793, General Chapin, at a council at Buffalo Creek, notified the Cayuga Indians then present that he, Chapin, and two other commissioners had been appointed by the governor of the state to treat with the Indians for the sale or lease of their lands at a meeting to be held that fall. Fish Carrier who, although present was then residing in Canada, replied that they could not attend until the following spring. Pages 364-367, 762.

On 24th January, 1794, the governor sent Major Dezing to deliver messages to the Cayugas, Mohawks and Onondagas looking to the purchase of their lands. Page 364.

On 28th January, 1794, the legislature of the state of New York passed a resolution that a special messenger be sent to the Cayugas and Onondagas to call them to a treaty respecting the sale of their lands. Major Dezing was at that very time ont on the reservations and the Cayugas from there were in Albany the next day. The resolution must therefore have been intended to refer to Cayugas and Onondagas at Buffalo Creek and in Canada. Page 818.

On 29th January, 1794, the Cayugas and Onondagas from the ieservations were in Albany and met Governor Clinton.

On 1st February, 1794, these Cayugas requested the state to purchase of them the Cayuga reserved lands. The meeting was at Deniston's tavern, and the minutes show that at the same place, on 29th January, the governor had met the Indians and discussed the same subject. Page 762.

Governor Clinton then stated plainly enough that he desired to deal not only with the Indians upon the lands, but also with those not upon the lands. He referred to the purchase of 1789 in which, as has been shown, the state had dealt with the boys and old women” of the nation, who happened to be upon their native lands, änd not with the governing representatives of the nation, who were then at Buffalo Creek and contemplating a new settlement upon coming to terms with respect to their interests within the State. Governor Clinton said of that purchase: “ Although I thought the “ people who lived on the land had the best right to it, still I paid

the Indians at Buffalo Creek for the lands again for the sake of “keeping peace and promoting harmony among you," and he counsels unity and concord. Page 763.

The governor of course realized that the state had already Ecquired the aboriginal title which had been ceded by the treaty of 1789, confirmed by that of 1790, and that the asset which he still further desired to purchase was the tract thereby reserved and granted to the nation.

On 10th February, 1794, General Chapin met the Cayugas and Onondagas at Buffalo Creek in consequence of receipt of a message from the governor of New York. Fish Carrier, who happened to be there, referred to the previous irregular purchase of land, and asked for time until they could send to the Grand River for two of their principal men." Page 366.

On 13th and 18th February, 1794, the governor met some of the Cayugas who were then at Albany, and asked them to deliberate as to the sale of their lands and the terms. These Cayugas were evidently from the reservation. He sent them home, awaiting presumably the Indians from Buffalo Creek and the Grand River, who

[ocr errors]

On 4th March, 1794, the Cayugas and Onondagas from the Grand River and Buffalo Creek on their way to Albany called on General Chapin. Clear Sky, an Onondaga resident at the Grand River, then made a speech to the general, who explained that an irregular purchase of Onondaga lands had been made the previous fall against his advice. General Chapin told these Indians that “the

governor considers you to be the proper owners of the lands as " well as those living on the same"; and further, “What I want

of you is to be united and become as one nation and do everything “ in your power that will most conduce to peace.

” He promised to accompany them to Albany. Pages 367, 368.

On 10th March, 1794, Governor Clinton by message notified the legislature that the Onondagas and Cayugas from the Grand River were in Albany. Page 818.

On 13th March, 1794, Governor Clinton met "the Cayugas and Onondagas from Buffalo Creek and the Grand River," and after referring to the negotiations for the Onondaga Treaty of 1788, said that "the winter following the Cayugas who remained in their own "country,” (meaning on the reservation) “met me at a council fire " at this place and made a similar covenant with me. I then hoped

that everything was finally adjusted to general satisfaction, but it

was not long before I was informed that some of your nation who “had left their country and resided at Buffalo Creek were not con** tented with these agreements because they were not present at “their completion.

I determined to kindle another council fire at Fort Stanwix.

Our Great “ Council who are now sitting in this place hearing that you had not “met the men whom they had sent into your country last summer • to confer with you, and being still anxious to promote your interests " and happiness, requested me to send a messenger to your different “nations” (thereby meaning the Cayugas and Onondagas)“ to

invite a deputation of each to attend at this place. “ This message I accordingly sent. The Onondagas and such of your nations as reside in their respective countries attended and

left this place on their return home before your arrival here." He then assured the visitors of friendship, and that the legislature had directed him to assure them that it would protect and secure

them in the possession and enjoyment of their reservations, according to the several agreements made with them, and is ready to make any further disposition thereof for their benefit whenever

*

66

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »