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same prices that they did before, so that I rather think it is the land that has fallen in value. We, Indians, do not understand selling lands to the white people ; for, when we sell, the price of land is always low; land is then cheap, but when the white people sell it out among themselves, it is always dear, and they are sure to get a high price for it. I had done much better if I had staid at home and minded my fall hunt.
You know I am a pretty good hunter and might have killed a great many deer, sixty, eighty, perhaps a hundred, and besides caught many racoons, beavers, otters, wild cats, and other animals, while I was at this treatry. I have often killed five, six, and seven deer in one day. Now I have lost nine of the best hunting weeks in the season by going to get what you see! We were told the precise time when we must meet. We came at the very day, but the great white men did not do so, and without them nothing could be done. When after some weeks they at last came, we traded, we sold our lands and received goods in payment, and when that was over, I went to my hunting grounds, but the best time, the rutting time, being over, I killed but a few. Now, help me to count up what I have lost by going to the treaty. Put down eighty deer; say twenty of them were bucks, each buck-skin one dollar; then sixty does and young bucks at two skins for a dollar; thirty dollars, and twenty for the old bucks, make fifty dollars lost to me in deer skins. Add, then, twenty dollars more to this for racoon, beaver, wild cat, black fox, and otter skins, and what does the whole amount to ?”
Indian.-"Well, let it be only seventy dollars, but how much might I have bought of the traders for this money! How well we might have lived, I and my family in the woods during that time! How much
meat would my wise have dried! how much tallow saved and sold or exchanged for salt, flour, tea and chocolate! All this is now lost to us; and had I not such a good wife (stroking her under the chin) who planted so much corn, and so many beans, pumpkins, squashes, and potatoes last summer, my family would now live most wretchedly. I have learned to be wise by going to treaties, I shall never go there again 10 sell my land and lose my time.”_HECKEWELDER.
USE OF THE BIBLE BY WHITE PEOPLE.
The Indians will not admit that the whites are superior beings. They say that the hair of their heads, their features, the various colours of their eyes, evince that they are not like themselves Lenni Lenape, an ORIGINAL PEOPLE, a race of men that has existed unchange i from the beginning of time; but they are a mixed race, and therefore a troublesome one; wherever they may be, the Great Spirit, knowing the wickedness of their disposition, found it necessary to give them a great Book,* and taught them how to read it, that they might know and observe what he wished them to do and to abstain from. But they, the Indians, have no need of any such book to let them know the will of their Maker; they find it engraved on their own hearts; they have had sufficient discernment given to them to distinguish good from evil, and by following that guide, they are sure not to err.
It is true, they confess, that when they first saw the whites, they took them for beings of a superior kind. They did not know but that they had been sent to them from the abode of the Great Spirit for
* The Bible.
some great and important purpose. They therefore, welcomed them, hoping to be inade happier by their company. It was not long, however, before they discovered their mistake, having found them an ungrateful insatiable people, who, though the Indians had given them as much land as was necessary to raise provisions for themselves and their families, and pas. ture for their cattle, wanted still to have more, and at last would not be contented with less than the whole country.
“ And yet,” say those injured people,“ these. white men would always be telling us of their great Book which God had given to them; they would persuade us that every man was good who believed in what the Book said, and every man was bad who did not believe in it. They told us a great many things, which they said were written in the good Book, and wanted us to believe it all. We would probably have done so, if we had seen them practise what they pretended to believe, and act according to the good words which they told us. But no! while they held their big Book in one hand, in the other they had murderous weapons, guns and swords, wherewith to kill us, poor Indians! Ah! and they did so 100, they killed those who believed in their Book, as well as those who did not. They made no distinction!"-HECKEWELDER.
The Indians in early times would never even permit any warlike weapons to remain within the limits of their council fire, when assembled together about the ordinary business of government. It might, they said, have a bad' effect, and defeat the object for which they had met. It might be a check on some of the persons assembled, and perhaps, prevent those who had a just complaint or representation to make,
from speaking their minds freely. William Penn, said they, when he treated with them, adopted this ancient mode of their ancestors, and convened them under a grove of shady trees, where the little birds on their boughs were warbling their sweet notes. In commemoration of these conferences (which are always to Indians a subject of pleasing remembrance) they frequently assembled together in the woods, in some shady spot as nearly as possible similar to those where they used to meet their brother Miquon, and there lay all his “words" or speeches, with those of his descendants, on a blanket or clean piece of bark, and with great satisfaction go successively over the whole. This practice (which I have repeatedly witnessed) continued until the year 1780, when the disturbances which then took place put an end to it, probably for ever. These pleasing remembrances, these sacred usages
6. When we treat with the white people," do the Indians now say,
we have not the choice of the spot where the messengers are to meet. When we are called upon to conclude a peace, (and what a peace ?) the meeting no longer takes place in the shady grove, where the innocent little birds with their cheerful songs, seem as if they wished to soothe and enliven our minds, tune them to amity and concord and take a part in the good work for which we
Neither is it at the sacred council house, that we are invited to assemble. No! It is at some of those horrid places, surrounded with mounds and ditches, where the most destructive of all weapons, where great guns, are gaping at us with their wide mouths, as is ready to devour us; and thus we are prevented from speaking our minds freely, as brothers ought to do !"
How then, say they, can there be any sincerity in such councils ? how can a treaty of this kind be
are no more.
binding on men thus forced to agree to what is dictated to them in a strong prison and at the cannon's mouth; where all the stipulations are on one side, where all is. concession on the one part and no friendship appears on the other ! From these considerations, which they urge and constantly dwell upon, the treaties which they make with the white men have lost all their force, and they think themselves no longer bound by them than they are compelled by superior power. Are they right in this or are they wrong? The impartial reader must decide.--HECKEWELDER,