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MINUTES OF CONFERENCES, HELD AT EASTON, In AUGUST, 1761.

With the Chief SASCHEMS and WARRIORS of the

  • ONONDAGOES,
  • ONEIDAS,
  • MOHICKONS,
  • TUTELOES,
  • CAYUGAS,
  • NANTICOKES,
  • DELAWARES,
  • CONOYS.

PHILADELPHIA: Printed and Sold by B. FRANKLIN, and D. HALL, at the New-Printing-Office, near the Market. MDCCLXI.

[Page 3] Minutes of Conferences, &c.

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians at Easton, on Monday the Third of August, 1761.

PRESENT,

  • The Honourable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq LIEUTENANT-GOVERNOR;
  • RICHARD PETERS, and BENJAMIN CHEW, Esquires, of the Council of the Province;
  • JOSEPH FOX, Esq one of the Provincial Commissioners, and several other Gentlemen from Philadelphia and other Parts of the Province;
  • The Deputies of the
    • ONONDAGOES,
    • CAYUGAS,
    • ONEIDAS,
    • MOHICKONS,
    • NANTICOKES,
    • DELAWARES,
    • TUTELOES,
    • CONOYS;
  • [...] about Four Hundred [...], which increased after­wards [...] Five Hundred.
  • SENECA GEORGE, Speaker.
  • SAMUEL WEISER, Interpreter.
  • JAMES SHERLOCK, Interpreter.
  • JOSEPH PEFY, Interpreter.

THE Governor opened the Conference with the usual Ceremonies of giving them a String, to bid them heartily welcome, and another to wipe the Sweat from their Bodies, to take the Thorns and Briars out of their Legs and Feet, to clear their Throats, and to open their Hearts; after which he acquainted them, that be then was, or would at any Time be ready, upon their giving him Notice, to attend to any Thing they had to say to him.

Then Seneca George stood up, and spoke as follows, viz.

Brother Onas,

I am very glad to meet you here at this Time, and to find that the Sky is clear, and that the Road is open and safe to travel in: I speak this in Behalf of Seven Nations, and all their Cousins, Captains and Warriors, and thank the Almighty that he has once more brought us all together, to shake Hands.

A String.

Brother Onas,

We suppose, that during the late Troubles, you may have lost many of your People, ei­ther by Sickness or War, since we were last together; by this String, therefore, we wipe away the Tears from your Eyes, clear your Throats, wash away the Blood from your Bodies, sweep the Council Chamber, and throw the Dirt out of Doors, that you may see and speak to us clearly at the present Conference.

A String.

[Page 4] Brother Onas,

We the Seven Nations1761., and all our Cousins, are sorry, from the Bottom of our Hearts, for the Death of your Men, Women and Children; and by this Belt we collect all their Bones together, bury them in one Grave, and cover them up.

A black Belt of eight Rows, streaked with White.

Brother Onas,

We the Seven Nations, and our Cousins, are at a great Loss, and sit in Darkness, as well as you, by the Death of Conrad Weiser, as since his Death we cannot so well understand one another: By this Belt we cover his Body with Bark.

A white Belt of seven Rows, with four black Streaks.

Brother Onas,

By the last Belt I mentioned to you that we both sat in Darkness, now by this Belt I re­move the Clouds from before the Sun, that we may see it rise and set, and that your Hearts may be eased from Sorrow, on Account of what I mentioned before.

A white Belt of five Rows, with three black Bars.

After the Delivery of the Belt, he added (having forgot it before) We pray the Great God above, who can enlighten our Hearts, that we may live in Love and Peace until Death.

Brother Onas,

Having taken Notice of the Death of Conrad Weiser, and the Darkness it has occasioned amongst us, I now, by this Belt (taking Hold of the Belt in the Middle) raise up another Interpreter, by whose Assistance we may understand one another clearly.

Brother Onas,

(Speaking with the other Part of the Belt) You know that in former Times, when great Men grew [...] and died, we used to put others in their Places; now as Conrad Weiser (who was a [...] Man, and one Half a Seven Nation Indian, and one Half an Englishman) is dead, we recommend it to the Governor to appoint his Son (pointing to Samuel Weiser, then present) to succeed him as an Interpreter, and to take Care of the Seven Nations and their Cousins. We take Hold of this Belt, and clasp our Hands together in Friendship, and de­sire you will not neglect our Request.

A black and white Belt of eight Rows.

Brother Onas,

Jenochiaada, the [...] of the [...] sends this String by Ashenoch, to his Brother the Governor, saying,

Brother,

When I receive a Letter from you, I cannot understand it, which I think very hard, and we ought to have some body living among us, who can understand and interpret your Mes­sages, and the Letters you send to us; wherefore I take my Child, James Sherlock, by the Hand, and present him to you, that with your Leave he may live amongst us, and serve us as an Interpreter on all Occasions.

Three Strings.

Brother Onas,

Having by the last String recommended James Sherlock to you, as an Interpreter, we have no more to say to you at present, but to inform you that we have sufficiently rested ourselves, after the Fatigue of our Journey, eased our Hearts of all Sorrow, and are ready to hear any Thing you have to say to us.

Three Strings.

The Governor then informed them, that he thanked them for what they had said, and would return them an Answer at another Time, and in a more convenient Place, of which he would give them timely Notice.

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians, on Wednesday the 5th of August, 1761.

PRESENT,

  • The Honourable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq Lieutenant-Governor;
  • RICHARD PETERS, BENJAMIN CHEW, Es­quires, of the Council of the Province, &c. &c. &c. as before;
  • SAMUEL WEISER, ISAAC STILLE; DAVID SEISBERGER, Interpreters.

Tokahaio, the Cayuga Chief, stood up and spoke.

Brother Onas,

BY this Belt, three Years ago, at a Treaty held here at Easton, the Governor invited us to come down in greater Numbers, as we were not all then present; and now that we [Page 5]do all appear, we return you the Belt, that had been given us at the making the Peace, and are glad to see you here Face to Face.

A very large white Belt of eighteen Rows.

Brother Onas,

You told us by this Belt, three Years ago, that you removed this, which is but a little Fire, to Philadelphia, where our Ancestors formerly kindled their great Fire, and made all their Alliances and Treaties.

Brother Onas,

By this other Belt, you at the same Time cleared the Road to the Great Council Fire, at Philadelphia, and removed all Obstructions out of it, that it might be open for us to pass in Safety.

Two Belts joined together.

Brother Onas,

By this Belt, you at the same Time told us, that you cleared our Ears, that all the Na­tions might hear what you had to say to us.

A white Belt of seven Rows, striped.

Brother Onas,

At the same Time you told us, that our Eyes were bad, and that by this String you cleared them, that we might be able to see a great Ways, and every Thing that passed.

Six white Strings.

Brother Onas,

You also gave us this String, and told us we seemed a little shy; but desired we would lay aside all such Thoughts, for you had no ill Intentions against us.

Three white Strings.

Brother Onas,

This String was sent to us, the Six Nations, by Seven Nations of Indians over the Lakes, who have formerly been in the French Interest, but have lately entered into an Alliance with us, desiring that they might lay Hold, with us, of one End of the Chain of Friendship, that subsists between us and the English; and we desire the Governor, that they may be ac­cepted as Friends.

The Names of the Seven Nations, abovementioned, are as follow, viz.

  • Warontas,
  • Scheiquoucchrona.
  • Schesova,
  • [...]
  • Cochnawagechrona
  • [...]
  • Neoquechta.

Ten white Strings.

Brother Onas,

When we came as far as Fort-Allen, you sent us this String by Mr. Horsefield, inviting us to come down to Easton; and now that we are come, we return it you again.

Four white Strings.

Brother Onas,

By this String you told us, on Monday last, that you were very glad to see us all well here; we are likewise glad to see you, and return it you again.

Three white Strings.

Brother Onas,

By this String you wiped the Sweat from our Bodies, took the Thorns from our Legs and Feet, cleared our Throats, and opened our Hearts; we thank you, and return it you again.

Four Strings, chequered.

Brother Onas,

These three Belts were brought to us, the Onondagoes, by the Oneidas, but they brought no Speeches with them; we therefore return them to you again, for, as they are your own Belts, you may know their Meaning;—we do not.

One Belt of eleven, one of eight, and one of seven Rows, black and white.

Being asked whether they were brought all together, or at different Times, they answered, that they were all brought by one Messenger, about a Year ago, which Messenger was an Oneida, but that they do not know his Name.—Being asked how the Oneida came by them, and what he said, they answered, that he said no more, but that they were about the Governor's Business.

Papounan, by one of his Indians, called Tougachena, living at Wighalousin, then spoke to the Governor as follows.

Agreeable to your Request, when I was at Philadelphia last Summer, I carried your Mes­sage to Achoan, the Chief of the Minisinks, respecting his sending the English Prisoners, and I now deliver to you Achoan's Answer.

[Page 6] Brother Onas,

‘You desired me last Year that I should clear myself, as your Brothers that live at Wig­halousin did, by which you would have a Proof of my Friendship. After I received your Message, I took it away to my Uncles, the Senecas, and delivered to them what you had said to me, upon which they advised me to deliver up all the Captives: Now Brother, I would have you not be impatient, and I will come as soon as possible. I will hunt up all the Captives that are amongst us, and will not leave one, but will bring them all;—but I have not found them all. I expect to come when the Corn is ripe; but if I should fail then, I will certainly come by the Spring.’

[...] white Strings.

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians, the same Day, in the Afternoon.

PRESENT, as before.

Teedyuscung, the Chief of the Delawares, stood up and spoke.

Brother, and all the rest of my Brethren and Uncles, attend.

I INTEND to take no other Method, than what I have already agreed with the Go­vernor. Brother, now I take the soft Feather to clear your Ears, which our Grandfathers used for the same Purpose, that you may hear distinctly whatever I may say.

Four chequered Strings.

Brother,

I desire you would now hear me; I beg you would frame that good Heart God has given you in a right Way, that you may sensibly feel, and have a right Understanding, of what I am going to say to you.

Four chequered Strings.

Brother,

I am come here to this Place, where we met about three Years ago. I then told you, I would take that Medicine which our Maker has ordered for us, to apply to any Wounds we may have. I likewise told you, that I do not apply it any where but where the Wound is—I have now come to see whether the Wound is healed, or no.

A Belt of eight Rows.

Brother,

You then told me, when you looked on the Road our Grandfathers laid out, that you ob­served many Bushes and much Grass grown there, so that you could not see me. You then took me by the Hand.

Brother,

All my young Men, as far as the Tweteeway Nations, have let me know, that they intend firmly to join in and stand to whatever you and I have agreed on; and also those young Men I have with me, Mohickons, Opies, and Delawares, say they will not take Notice of what few drops of Blood have stained our Road, but will look steady to our Agreement.

A black Belt of seven Rows, and five chequered Strings.

Brother,

Observe what I am going to say, and I will let you know we have cleared ourselves, as far as Makahelousink, Papounan's House. I will assure you, that I want to make a Peace between us as lasting as the World. I call the Almighty to witness, that I have no Captives in my Possession, as far as Makahelousink.

Seven chequered Strings.

Brother,

I have one Thing more to say: I would not have you look to me any more for any Thing, for I believe nothing will ever make us differ again, except it is your Fault, for I am sure nothing on my Part shall cause it; therefore, if any Thing should fall out, examine your own Hearts, for it must spring from you, because all our young Men have put it into the Care of their Chiefs to manage Affairs.

Three chequered Strings.

Brother,

Our Grandfathers used to hold great Treaties of Peace and good Friendship, now we that suc­ceed them will do the same; they used to agree that we should have one Ear and one Eye, now you sit at Philadelphia, and I am away in the Country, and whatever one hears or sees, the other should hear it and see it also, because we are Brothers.

Thirteen chequered Strings.

Brother,

As I told you just now that we have one Ear, I desire you would hear me: My Uncles, the Seven Nations, that sit here now, desire me to leave Wyoming, for Fear; I answered, [Page 7]I will not leave it so suddenly; but, if I should see any Danger, I will endeavour to jump out of the Way of that Danger.

A black and white Belt of six Rows.

Brother,

My Uncles have now put some Tobacco in my Pouch; they tell me, I must steadily look towards the Mountains, and ‘if you see English Brethren coming over the Mountains, you must light your Pipe, and come to us (the Mingoes) and we will receive you.’

A white Belt of six Rows, striped.

Brother,

It is about three Years ago that I desired my Uncles would give me a Deed for the Lands at Wyoming, but as they have not done it, I believe I shall get up and leave it; for you know, according to your Custom, you hold all Lands by Deeds, and if our Uncles had given us a Deed, our Children would enjoy them after us: If they had given me a Deed, my Children and Grandchildren would live there as long as the World lasts; but as that is not done, I believe I shall leave it.

A white Belt of twelve Rows.

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians at Easton, on Friday the Seventh of August, 1761.

PRESENT,

  • The Honourable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of Pennsylvania;
  • RICHARD PETERS, and BENJAMIN CHEW, Esquires, of the Council of the Province;
  • JOSEPH FOX, Esq one of the Provincial Commissioners, and several other Gentlemen from Philadelphia and other Parts of the Province;
  • The Deputies of the
    • ONONDAGOES,
    • CAYUGAS,
    • ONEIDAS,
    • NANTICOKES,
    • MOHICKONS,
    • DELAWARES,
    • TUTELOES,
    • CONOYS;
  • Men, Women and Children, about Four Hundred in Number.

The Governor, addressing himself to the Indians present, spoke as follows, viz.

Brethren of the Six Nations, and of all the other Indian Nations now present,

HEARKEN to me, while I return an Answer to your Speeches of Monday and Wednesday last.

Brethren,

It gives me Pleasure to hear that you have found the Sky clear, and the Road to this Coun­cil Fire open and safe, and I join with you in returning Thanks to the Almighty, that he has once more brought us all together, to speak to one another, as Brethren and Friends, Face to Face.

A String.

Brethren,

We thank you for remembering those whom we have lost, during the late Troubles, either by Sickness or War, and for wiping away the Tears from our Eyes, clearing our Throats, washing away the Blood from our Bodies, and sweeping clean the Council Chamber; in re­turn, we most heartily condole with you, the Seven Nations, and all your Cousins and War­riors, for the Death of all our Indian Brethren, who have died or been killed since we last met in Council, and with this String we wipe away the Tears from your Eyes, clean your Throats, wash away the Blood from your Bodies, sweep the Council Chamber, and throw the Dirt out of Doors, that there may be nothing to interrupt our present friendly Conference.

A String.

Brethren,

With this Belt we collect together the Bones of all your Men, Women and Children, and most affectionately bury them in one Grave, that they may rest in Peace for ever.

A Belt.

Brethren,

We are very sensible, with you, that both of us have sustained a very heavy Loss, by the [Page 8]Death of our old and good Friend Conrad Weiser, who was an able, experienced and faithful Interpreter, and one of the Council of the Seven Nations, and that since his Death we, as well as you, have sat in Darkness, and are at a great Loss for Want of well understanding what we say to one another: We mourn, with you, for his Death, and heartily join in covering his Body with Bark.

A Belt.

Brethren,

By this belt we dispel the dark Clouds, which you have justly observed the Death of our good Friend has occasioned, and make the Sky perfectly clear again, that we may behold the Light all the Day long: We ease your Hearts from the Grief you were under, on this mournful Account, and we pray God that we may for ever live together in Peace and Love.

A Belt.

Brethren,

Having thus paid our Regards to our deceased Friend, we cannot but observe, with you, that there is a Necessity of appointing some other Person to succeed him, by whose Assistance we may be enabled to find the true Sense and Meaning of what there may be Occasion to say to one another, either in Council, or by Letters, or Messages.

Brethren,

In Conformity to the ancient Custom of taking from among the Relations of any great Man who dies, some fit Person to supply his Place (as Mr. Weiser was by Adoption one of the Six Nations, though by birth one of us) we think you did well to cast your Eyes upon one of his Children, and, inasmuch as Samuel Weiser is the only one amongst them who has any Knowledge of the Indian Language, and has lived among you, we shall be glad to make Trial of him for the present, and if we find him capable of serving in the Office of an Interpreter, and in the Management of Indian Affairs (in both which Capacities his Fa­ther so well acquitted himself) we shall appoint him to that Service. We look upon this Choice of yours as a Mark of your grateful Affection for Conrad Weiser, who was always your sincere Friend; and we join this Belt to yours, as Token of our Concurrence, so far as to make Trial of him.

Their Belt, and another.

Brethren,

I have now answered every Thing that you, of the Seven United Nations, said to me at our last Meeting. I now address myself to Jenochryada, the Onondagoe Chief, to answer the Message he sent to me by Ashenoch.

Brother Jenochryada.

You tell me that James Sherlock has for some Time past lived with you. I am glad to hear he has behaved in such a Manner as to obtain your good Opinion of him, and I hope he will continue to prove himself worthy of your Confidence: I have no Objection to his living among you, or to your employing him in any Business you may have to transact with us, which you think him capable of executing; but as he is a young Man, and quite a Stranger to me. I cannot consent to employ him as an Interpreter for this Government un­til I have as full an Experience of his Abilities and good Disposition as you have had. In the mean Time, if I should have any Occasion of sending Messages or Letters to your Nation, I shall commit the Care of them to Messengers of my own; and desire you will observe the same Method, as the likeliest Means to our right understanding of one another, and prevent­ing Mistakes, which might otherwise happen.

A String.

Brethren of the Seven United Nations,

You told me, that three Years ago, at a Treaty held here. I invited you, by this Belt, to come down in great Numbers as you were not then all present, and that, as you all were now here, you returned me this Belt, and were glad to see as here Face to Face.

Brethren,

My Counsellors well remember, that this Belt was given you by the late Governor of this Province, at the last Treaty, but you seem to have mistaken the End and Purpose for which it was given: I must therefore inform you, that it was given to you as a Peace Belt, by which we then renewed our old Treaties, brightened the Chain of Friendship, confirmed our former Union, and put fresh Earth to the Roots of the Tree of Peace, that it might bear up against every Storm, and live and flourish to the End of Time, whilst the Sun should shine, and the Rivers run; and we then further desired you would publish this good News among your own and all other Indian Nations, who were your Friends and Allies, and engage them to join with you in a firm Peace with our great King, and all his People. All this ap­pears by the Minutes of that Treaty, taken down to Writing at that Time; you ought [Page 9]therefore to preserve this Belt, as a Blood or Earnest of the Engagements are then made to one another, and keep it safe in your Bosoms, and I now return it year for that Purpose

The Peace Belt returned.

Brethren,

You informed us that this String was sent from Seven Nations of Indians over the Lakes, who have formerly been in the French Interest, but have lately entered into your Alliance, desiring they might lay Hold with you, of one End of the Chain of Friendship, that susists between you and the English.

Brethren,

It gaves me great Pleasure to hear that you have strengthened your Interest by entering into to an Alliance with these Seven Nations of Indians, who have been formerly in the Interest of the French. You and I are one Flesh and Blood, and I shall love and esteem all Indians whatsoever, who are in your Friendship; I will take this String, and send it to the Kings Commander in Chief, and Sir William Johnson, and let them know the Desire those Indians have of entering into Friendship and Alliance with the English, and I make to Doubt but they with receive them with open Arms. To confirm my Words, I give you this String.

A String.

Brethren,

I am very much surprized to hear from you, that these three Belt were brought to the On­ondagoe Council by an Oneida Indian, about a Year ago, without any Speeches or Messages to attend them. I can assure you, I did not send these Belts to the Onondagoe Council, and therefore I am at a loss to know the Meaning of them, or from whom they came. I have frequently sent Messages into the Indian Country, to put them in Mind of their Promise to return to us our Flesh and Blood, who are prisoners among them, and to press them to ful­fil that Promise; and it is possible, that the Belt sent with the Messengers for that Purpose may have been forwarded to the Six Nation Council by mistake; I therefore now return you the Belt, that you may make further Enquiry of the Oneidas about them.

The Belts returned.

Brethren,

You acquainted me, by these three Belts, first, that you were coming to see me, and were got as far as Wyoming; by the second, you desired me to meet you at Easton; by the third, you desired me to stop strong Drink, and send you Waggons, Provisions, and Paint. As I have complied with these several Request, I now return you the Belts.

The three Belts returned.

The several other Belts and Strings which you received from us at the last Treaty, and were returned by you to me the Day before Yesterday, I have accepted, and put into the Council Bag.

Brethren,

Whatever may be the Occasion of your coming down at this Time, I can truly say, I am glad to see my old Friends and Brethren once more, and take them by the Hand, and will make you as welcome and easy, while you stay among us, as I possibly can. I have only further to say to you at present, that as we are now Face to Face, we should open our Hearts to one another, and let nothing remain upon our Minds; if you, on your Part, have any Thing to offer or communicate to me, that relates to the private Interest or Concerns of this Province, or that can tend to promote and confirm our Friendship, and prevent all future Causes of Jealousy and Discontent, I shall be glad to hear it.

A Belt.

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians, on Saturday the Eighth of August, 1761.

PRESENT, The Honorable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq &c. as before.

Joseph Pepy stand up, and speake as follows: viz.

Brother Onas,

I AM to speak a few Words to you. We had a great Council Fire at Albany, when a Friendship was first made with our Grandfathers; after which, about seven Years ago, our Brother General Johnson moved the Council Fire from Albany to his own House, where he said to us. ‘I am one Half Indian, and one Half English: What I say to my dear Brethren, the Seven Nations, shall be true.’—The Seven Nations were accordingly all assembled to the Place where he had kindled the Fire, at which Time he took up a Toma­hawk, gave it them, and told them, he was going to War against the French, and desired [Page 10]them to join with him, and promised them, that after the French were all conquered and removed, Trade should be made open and free to them, and all Kinds of Goods should be­come more cheap, and that their Furs and Skins should bear a good Price.—

Last Year General Johnson appointed his Brethren, the Seven Nations, to meet him at Oswego, upon which they did assemble there; at which Time General Johnson observing that their Chiefs and Warriors were not all come, he sent a second Message, desiring them all to attend him there, and when they did come he said,

Brethren,

‘I am very glad to see you here. I see many of your Chiefs are dead. I am now going against the French, and out of the Prisoners that I shall take from them, I will put as many in their Room.’—Now, Brother Onas, as General Johnson has not performed his Promise to us, we see Death coming upon us, and the God above knows he has wronged us.

Brother Onas,

We give no Belt or String upon this Occasion, and only relate it as Matter of Information to you.

Brother Onas,

Listen to what your Brethren of the Seven Nations say, in Answer to what you told us Yesterday.

You desired us to open our Hearts, that nothing unknown might lay hid there, but that every Thing may come out: We desire, by this Belt, that you may do the same.

A white Belt of eight Rows, with three black Bars.

Brother Onas,

We see, Brethren, on each Side of us: On the one Side, the Governor of Virginia, who does not speak or do right to us; on the other Side, General Johnson, who does the same. We have often heard you speak, and you always do and speak right and justly to us; every Time you speak it does our Hearts good. When we look towards you, General Johnson and the Governor of Virginia, we esteem you all as One; how comes it then that you do not all speak alike. We, your Brethren of the Seven Nations, are penned up like Hogs. There are Forts all around us, and therefore we are apprehensive that Death is coming upon us. We want nothing but Friendship with you, so long as the Sun shall shine, and the Waters run.

A white Belt of nine Rows, and four black Bars.

Brother Onas,

Hearken to what your Brethren, the Seven Nations, are going to say to you. When our Grandfathers first made a Friendship together, God saw it: Now we, and all the Nations, would stand to the Agreement they made, and when any Nations smile upon us, we will join with them. Now, dear Brother, may God Almighty give us Strength and Knowledge, to continue our Friendship. We look at no other, but to you, to hold fast the Chain of Friendship. We are crushed on all Sides, so that we cannot stir ourselves, nor look any Way but to you.—Now, dear Brother, that we see you Face to Face, we desire that you would not slack your Friendship, but hold it fast.

A black and white Belt of seven Rows.

Brother Onas,

I would only let you know, in a few Words, how our Brother General Johnson served us.—When we come to him for Ammunition, and bring our Skins, he does not give us the Worth of our Skins, but only a Handful of Powder; and for that Reason we think there is certain Death coming upon us.—

He shuts up his Powder from us, and will not give us more than will serve us two or three Days. We only mention this to you, but if you will continue to smile on us, we will look to you.

A white Belt of six Rows, and three black Bars.

Brother Onas,

We are now sensible, that we were under a Mistake with Respect to the Meaning of this Belt (holding up the large Peace Belt) We should not have brought it back to you again, if we had known what it meant: We are very glad that you have explained it to us: We look upon it as the Belt of Peace, and will shew it to all the Nations over the Lake, and will lodge it in the Onondagoe Council, where the only General Council Fire is kept, and where it ought to remain.

Brother Onas,

This is all your Brethren of the Seven Nations have to say.

[Page 11]

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians, on Monday the Tenth of August, 1761.

PRESENT, The Honourable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq &c, &c, as before.

Tokahaio stood up and spoke as follows, viz.

Brother Onas,

YOU will please to hear what the Six Nations are going to say to you. Some of the English have settled upon our Lands, but we don't know from whence they came. We hope that as you are strong, you will assist us in preventing them from settling upon our Lands, that we may not be wronged out of them.

A Belt of seven Rows, with six Diamonds and a Bar.

Brother Onas,

We have heard that this Land has been sold, but we do not know for certain by whom. The Six Nations have not sold it, and never intended it as yet. Whoever has sold the Land, stole it from us, and only did it to fill their Pockets with Money; but we have heard that two Tuscaroras, one Oneida, and one Mohawk, have sold it, unknown to the Six Nations.

A String of four Rows.

Brother Onas,

Hear what we are going to say to you.—You know there is a Line made between you and us, and we desire that none of the English would settle on the other Side of that Line. [Being asked what they meant by that Line, they answered, the Line of the Purchase last made by this Province from the Six Nations.] Some People have already settled over that Line, which People we do not like, and hope you will be strong, and assist us in having them removed.

A Belt of seven Rows, with three black Diamonds.

Brother Onas,

We are very poorly off, as we have no Trade stirring among us, and as we have men­tioned to you that the Things we buy from General Johnson are very dear, we hope you will have Pity on us, and erect a Trading-house at Diahoga, that we may be to buy our Goods cheaper. We are in great Want of all Kinds of Goods, but especially of Powder and Lead, and hope you will supply us plentifully with them. We desire you would not al­low any strong Liquor to be sent among us, as we shall fetch that ourselves, whenever we shall want it. As soon as we see your People come with Goods, we will acquaint all our young Men with it, both far and near, and if your Goods are sold reasonable, we suppose that General Johnson will also sell his Goods cheaper than he now does.—We desire that you would send a good and honest Man to trade with us.

A Belt of seven Rows and four black Bars.

Brother Onas,

You have frequently sent us Messages by straggling Indians, Delawares, and others, upon whom there is no Dependance: They sometimes lose the Belts and Messages, and sometimes drink them away; but if they do happen to reach as, they are nothing but Nonsense. We desire you, therefore, that whenever you have Messages to send, you will send them by trusty Persons to our Great Council Fire at Onondagoe, that we may be able to understand them rightly; and as we have chosen Samuel Weiser for that Purpose, you can always send your Messages by him.

A chequered String of four Rows.

Brother Onas,

You have often made Mention of your Flesh and Blood, who are Prisoners among us. 'Tis true, Brother, there was some of your Blood among us; there were Ten among the Cayugas, but our Brother General Johnson has also often spoke of them to us, and we have delivered them all up to him; there is none amongst us at present—You must now look for then amongst the Delawares, our Cousins.

A Belt of four Rows, with three black Bars.

Brother Onas,

We have nothing further to say, and as we have been here a great While, we desire the Governor to make Haste to dismiss us.

(James Sherlock reports, that he had a Belt from the Onondagoes to the Delawares, at Chug­not, above Diahoga, demanding the English Prisoners they had; that he received one Woman from them, and was coming off with her in a Canoe, but that Mechtochraway, the Delaware King, followed him, and took her from him, telling him that the Delawares would not de­liver up their Prisoners, till they heard what their Brother, the English should say.)

[Page 12]

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians, on Tuesday the Eleventh of August.

PRESENT, The Honourable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq &c. as before.

The Governor, addressing himself to the Seven United Nations, spoke as follows, viz.

Brethren of the Seven United Nations, and all our Indian Brethren now present,

YOU desire me to open my Heart, and conceal nothing from you. I give you this String, to assure you that I will always communicate to you every Thing that comes to my Knowledge, or that rises up in my Mind, which concerns our common Interest, and keep nothing secret, but will agree that you and I shall have but one Eye, one Ear, and one Heart.

A String.

Brethren,

I am very sorry to hear that you apprehend General Johnson has been unkind to you. I am afraid the Evil Spirit is again endeavouring to blind your Eyes, and mislead you. You well know that General Johnson has, for a great Number of Years past, manifested his Love and Friendship for the Indians, on many Occasions, and you have as often given Proofs of your Esteem and good Opinion of him. You should not therefore suffer the Confidence and Trust you have reposed in him, to be interrupted by any Jealousies or Suspicions; but you should open your Hearts to him, and tell him your Minds freely. I am persuaded he is a very worthy Gentleman, and your good Friend, and if you will lay your Grievances before him, I am sure be will do you Justice, if you have been injured, and remove all your Un­easiness.

A Belt.

Brethren,

You say that you are afraid Death is coming upon you, and seem to apprehend yourselves to be in great Danger; I am much surprized to hear this, nor can I find out what has given Rise to your Fears, as there is now a perfect Peace and Friendship betwixt you and all your Brethren the English: you must not therefore make yourselves uneasy without any just Grounds or Foundation. I speak to you from the [...] of my Heart, and do assure you that I never heard, nor do I believe that there are any ill Designs forming against you.

A Belt.

Brethren,

I thank you for the particular Affection you express for the People of this Province. We have always made it a Rule to speak to you plainly, and from the Bottom of our Hearts, and to treat you not only justly, but with Brotherly Love, and Kindness. And it now gives us great Satisfaction to hear that you think so well of us. I assure you we desire nothing more, than to live in perfect Peace and Friendship with you, as long as the Sun and Moon endures. We will always hold the Chain of Friendship in our Hands, and keep it Bright and Free from Rust, and in all our future Conduct to, and Dealings with you, continue to use you well, and give you every Proof of our Affection and Regard for you.

A Belt.

Brethren,

I have carefully considered that Part of the Speech you made Yesterday, wherein you say that some Lands have been stole from you, and sold by some Indians, who have no Right to them, to the English, who have settled upon them. I know of no Lands lying within this Province, which have not been purchased of you, that have been settled by the English, except a Tract lying on or near the River Delaware, about Fifty Miles above the Blue Moun­tains. Brethren, I am glad to have this Opportunity of speaking to you on this Head: It is a Matter of great Consequence, and has given me much Concern; listen attentively, there­fore, to what I shall say to you about this Matter. — You know that an Agreement was made, a great While ago, between your Ancestors and your Brother Onas (which has been often renewed and confirmed by many of your Chiefs now living) that your Brother Onas would never settle any Lands in this Province, till he had fairly purchased them of the Indians, who engaged that they would never sell any Lands in this Province to any other Person than their Brother Onas. That you may refresh your Memories, and call to Mind this Agreement. I give you this Belt.

A Belt.

Brethren,

A great Number of People who lived in Connecticut Government, came about a Year ago and settled near this River, beyond the Line of the Lands purchased of you, at a Place called Cushietunck and claimed all the Lands from thence quite up to Wyoming. As soon as heard [Page 13]of it I sent Messengers to them, informing them these Lands had never been purchased of the Indians, and desiring them to remove away. They sent me back, for Answer, that they had purchased all those Lands of you, and under that Pretence had a Right to them, and would hold them. Now, Brethren, as you have told me you will hide nothing from me, I desire you will tell me truly, whether you have sold these Lands to these Strangers, who have settled them, against my Will and Consent? — (To which Question the Six Nations made Answer, That those were the Lands which they mentioned Yesterday to have been sold by four straggling Indians, without the Knowledge or Consent of their General Council, and that they understood Thomas King, an Oneida Indian, was one of those who had sold those Lands.)

Upon which Answer the Governor said,

Brethren,

You know all such private Sales are of no Force. I therefore join this String to the Belt, and desire you will send for those Indians into the Great Council at Onondagoe, and reprove them for their Conduct, and cancel their Deeds.

A Belt and a large String.

Brethren,

I have already, by the Consent of my Wise Men, set up two great Stores, or Trading-houses, to furnish the Indians with all Sorts of Goods, at a cheap Rate, one at Pittsburgh, and the other at Shamokin; at the last of which Places you may easily supply yourselves with whatever you want. The Expences, Losses, and many Difficulties which attend our sending Goods to these two Places, are so great, that I cannot set up another Store-house at so great a Distance as Diahoga, according to your Desire. — I am sorry to refuse you any Thing; but if I should agree with you, to do more than I can perform, you would have just Reason to charge me with deceiving you. You must not therefore take it amiss, that I always speak plainly to you, and tell you my Mind.

A Belt.

Brethren,

I told you before, that if I should have Occasion to send you any Messages, I would com­mit the care of them to Messengers of my own; and as Samuel Weiser is a Person recom­mended by you for that Purpose, I will use him for the future.

A String.

Brethren,

I am pleased to hear you sent to General Johnson our Flesh and Blood, who were Prisoners among the Cayugas. We esteem it as the strongest Proof of your Friendship that you can possibly give us. — You all agreed, at the Treaty held here three Years ago, that you would search all the Towns and Places in the Indian Countries for them, and deliver them up to us, without leaving one behind; and that if they had gone down your Throats, you would heave them up again. I am sorry that but very few have yet been brought back, though I know there are a great many scattered up and down among the Indians. We cannot help thinking that you speak only from your Lips, and not from your Hearts, whatever Professions of Regard you make for us, till this Promise is performed, and we see our Fathers, Mothers and Children, who have been carried into Captivity, restored to us, this Promise was the Condition on which the Peace Belt was exchanged between us. — Some among you have been faithful, and sent back all the Prisoners they had; I do not therefore address this Part of my Speech to them, but take them to my Heart; it is intended only for such of the In­dians as have deceived us, and still detain our Flesh and Blood. I sincerely wish to be Friends with you all, and therefore once more put you in Mind of your Engagements, and insist on your immediately complying with them, by restoring the Prisoners, that nothing may remain to make any Difference between us to the End of Time.

A Belt.

The Governor, addressing himself to Teedyuscung, spoke as follows, viz.

Brother,

Agreeable to your Request, I have taken into serious Consideration what you said to me on Wednesday last, and shall answer you with the same good Will and Sincerity that true Friends always use to one another.

A String.

Brother,

I readily acknowledge that you have been a great Instrument in bringing about the great Work of Peace; and, according to the Promises you made us at this Place three Years ago, the Peace Belt has been sent to several Nations of Indians, who have since joined their Hands to it; so that, by the Blessing of the Most High, the Wound, by the Means of the Medi­cine you have applied, is intirely healed. And it shall be my Endeavour, as you say it shall be yours, to keep the Wound from ever opening again.

A Belt.

[Page 14] Brother,

You tell me that all your young Men as far as the Twightwees, and those now with you, Mohickons, Opies and Delawares, intend to join in, and stand to, whatever you and I have agreed to; and that they will not take Notice of whatever Drops of Blood may have stained the Road, but will look steadily to our Agreement.

Brother,

I very much commend this Resolution; — it is a Mark of Prudence and real Love for Peace; considering how many wicked Men there are in the World, it must be expected that private Mischiefs, and even Murders, will now and then be committed: When this happens, we shall do well to let one another know of it, and join in taking all proper Measures to de­tect and punish the evil Doers. This being done, the public Peace can never be affected or hart. — By this Belt I assure you that this is my Disposition and Resolution, as well as it is yours.

A Belt and String.

Brother,

I take special Notice of your declaring that you have cleared yourself as far as [...], Papounan's Town, as far as that Place, you say you have no Prisoners, but they are all delivered up, and you want to make a Peace as lasting as the World; Brother, I take this public Declaration of yours very kindly; I believe you say true; if all like you would do the same Thing, — and they are engaged, and have often promised, to do it, — the Peace would last for ever. On the Part of this Government all Engagements shall be punctually observed▪ this String confirms my Words.

A String.

Brother,

You say you would not have me look to you for any Thing further, for nothing will ever make a Difference betwixt you and me, and therefore if any Thing happens, it must spring from me, as your young Men have put all their Affairs into the Hands of their Chief. Bro­ther, assure yourself that my Heart is good towards you, and that I shall take all the Pains in my Power to prevent any Breach of the Peace; keep but your young Men sober, and in Or­der, and let them do no Mischief to the Inhabitants, and I am well assured we shall always remain on good Terms, and enjoy all the Benefits of Peace.

A String.

Brother,

I agree with you that friendly Conferences between us are of great Use, as they give us an Opportunity of setting Matters that may arise from time to time, which might otherwise breed Misunderstandings between us. — I shall be your Ear, and inform you constantly of any Thing that may concern you.

A String.

Brother,

I thank you for your Information respecting what you told me was said to you by the Se­ven Nations. You are [...] all together; speak your Minds to one another freely and affec­tionately, as Friends and Relations should do, and agree now on all Points. If you really mean to continue at Wyoming, let your Uncles know it, and they will, I doubt not, content to it. They seem to apprehend that Danger is nigh to you as well as themselves, but I hope what I have said to them of the good Disposition of General Johnson, will quiet both their and your Fears. By this Belt I assure you that I will give you the earliest Notice in my Power if any Harm should ever be intended against you. At present I know of none; I am as­sured that there is none.

A Belt.

Brother,

I shall be very sorry if you remove from Wyoming; this Province has chearfully, and at a considerable Expence, assisted you to build House, and make your Settlement there com­modious to you as long as you live; there you will always find us disposed to assist you, if you go away, if will not be so much in our Power. Consider this well; your Uncles, who now hear me speak to you, will not, I hope, after placing you there, and after the Expence that has been laid out by us in building Houses for you, desire you to go to live at another Place, without your giving them some Cause of Complaint; and that I hope you never with do. In Confirmation of the Truth of what I now say to you, I give you this Belt.

A Belt.

The Governor then addressing himself to the Papounan, spoke as follows.

Brother Papounan,

I thank you for your Care in sending my Message to Achoan, and for delivering his An­swer. I shall give you no more Trouble in this Matter, nor send him any more Messages; but expect his Uncles, the Seven Nations, will acquaint him with what I have so strongly urged upon them, during these Conferences, with Respect to the Delivery of the Prisoners.

[Page 15]

At a CONFERENCE with the Indians, the same Day, in the Afternoon.

PRESENT, as before.

IN Consequence of the Governor's pressing Demand for the Indians to deliver up all the English Prisoners they had now with them, they produced one Girl, and delivered her up to the Governor in Form.

The Governor then spoke to the Indians.

Brethren,

I am now to inform you, that since our last Meeting at this Place, three Years ago, the Road has been stained with a few Drops of Blood. The first Thing of this Kind happened over Susquehanna, where one Indian Man, his Wife, and two Children were found dead, having been either murdered or drowned in the River Conedogwainet. It no sooner came to my Knowledge, but I issued a Proclamation, offering Two Hundred and Sixty-six Dollars, as a Reward for detecting and apprehending all such as should be concerned in this Murder: but, notwithstanding all my Endeavours, nothing certain has yet been discovered.

About two Months ago, our very good Friend Thomas Hickman was found shot in the Tuscarora Path Valley. One Person is now in Goal, on Suspicion; two others were put into Prison, but set at Liberty again, at the Instance of the Indians, it appearing to them that they were innocent. All possible Endeavours are now [...] to find out who did this wicked Act; a Reward has been offered, by publick Proclamation, for their Apprehension, and I hope we shall find them.

There may have been some few more of such Instances, which I may not have been par­ticularly informed of; but these are all that have reached my Ears.

Brethren,

These are Accidents, which ought not to affect the Peace made between us; It is as grie­vous to me as to you to hear of these wicked Acts, and let them be who they will that have been guilty of these Murders, they shall die themselves, as soon as convicted thereof, by a lawful Tryal. With this Belt I collect their Bones, and put them all into one Grave.

A Belt.

I fill up their Graves, and cover their Bodies with these Strouds.

Strouds.

With these Handkerchiefs I wash off the Blood from your Bodies, and wipe away the Tears from your Eyes.

Handkerchiefs.

With this Belt I take all Sorrow out of your Hearts, I clear your Throats, Eyes, and Ears, and desire you will no more mourn for them.

A Belt.

Teedyuscung then informed the Governor, that he desired to speak a few Words to him, and to his Uncles the Six Nations; whereupon the Governor desired him to begin, and he spoke as follows.

Uncles,

I beg you will hearken to what I am going to say. You may remember, some Years ago, at our Council Fire, you took me by the Hairs of my Head, and shook me, and told me to go and live at Wyoming, for you gave me the Land there, where I might raise my Bread, and get my Living; now again you desire me to move off from thence, and would place me somewhere else. The [...] why I complied with your first Request was, be­cause I thought you would give [...] Lands at Wyoming, in the Room of some of our Lands you had sold the English [...] you now, that if I move from thence, some English will come and settle [...] Midst of our Road, so that we cannot pass from thence to this Province; and we [...] the Land, so that neither you nor me will have any Benefit from it.

Address [...] to the Governor, he said,

Brother,

I am really very glad to hear [...] the Wound is healed up; we are all pleased at it since this is the Case we expect [...] pay us for the Lands we have been complaining [Page 16]about. It was left to King GEORGE. You told me as soon as ever you heard from the King, you would let me know of it; but I have not heard you say any thing about it since: Now, Brother, as there are some here present, who have never been paid for some of their Lands, we desire you would pay them now: but as for the Munsies, and some others at Al­legheny, who also claim Lands near this Place, they will agree with you when they see you.

The Governor replied, that he would take into Consideration what he had said, and would answer him in the Morning.

Being asked what Lands he desired to be paid for; he answered, that the Lands are where we now stand, betwixt the Mountains and Tohicon Creek, but acknowledged that some Lands about Durbam, four Miles square, were paid for.

Tokahaio then stood up and spoke.

Brother Onas,

We the Seven Nations, especially the Nanticokes and Conoys, speak to you. — About seven Years ago we went down to Maryland, with a Belt of Wampum, to fetch our Flesh and Blood, which we shewed to some Englishmen there, who told us they did not understand Belts, but if we had brought any Order in Writing from the Governor of Pennsylvania, they would let our Flesh and Blood then come away with us; but as this was not done, they would not let them come: — Now we desire you would give us an Order for that Purpose.

A white Spring of five Rows.

Brother Onas,

We would have you make some Satisfaction to our Cousins here, the Delawares, for their Lands, as we suppose they desire it. — Some of them are now present, who claim some Lands here, and are often thinking of it, particularly one (pointing to Joseph Pepy)

At a private CONFERENCE, on Wednesday the Twelfth of August, 1761.

PRESENT,

  • The Honorable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq, Lieutenant-Governor, &c. &c.
  • RICHARD PETERS, Esquire;
  • LEWIS GORDON, Esquire;
  • The Chief of the Onondagoes,
  • ASHENOCH, Speaker.
  • JAMES SHERLOCK, Interpreter.

Brother Onas,

IT is a long Time since we last met together, and we are now glad to see you. Brother, we request it of you that you would give us a Duplicate of this Deed (shewing a Deed of Release from Richard Peters, and Conrad Weiser. Esquires, Proprietary Attornies to them at the last Treaty), because it is the Desire of Jenochryada, and in Order that the Mohawks may have the Original, and we keep the Copy.

A chequered String of three Rows.

To which Request the Governor assented, and desired Lewis Gordon, Esq to prepare an exemplified Copy of the above-mentioned Release for them.

Jeoquanta then Spoke to the Governor.

Brother Onas,

My old Mother and Children, who are here at present, are not able to walk, I desire therefore that my Brother would help me to a Horse, as I have a great Way to go Home, and cannot make a Canoe at this Time of the Year.

A black Belt of seven Rows.

Brother Onas,

I have come a great Way, and have brought with me a Pack of Beaver. Our Brother General Johnson, and those who live near him, sell their Goods very dear, and give us no­thing for our Skins, but as I heard our Brothers of this Province gave better Prices for our Skins, I have brought them here, and hope my Brother will see Justice done me in the Sale of them. And if my Brother thinks I can get a better Price for them by carrying them to Philadelphia, I should be obliged to him for his Information.

A chequered String of three Rows.

[Page 17]

At a public CONFERENCE on the same Day.

PRESENT, The Honourable JAMES HAMILTON, Esq &c. &c. as at the former public Conferences.

The Governor, addressing himself to Teedyuscung, spoke as follows.

Brother,

AS to the Lands lying between the Kittochtinny Hills and Touhickon Creek, which you say you have never been paid for, you know the Proprietaries of this Province have al­ways insisted that they were fairly purchased of the Delawares, before you were born, who received the Consideration Money for them; you know also that the Dispute between you and the Proprietaries about these Lands was, by your own particular Desire, referred to our Great King over the Water, who, from his Love of Justice, and Regard to you, has taken upon himself to settle it, and has ordered General Johnson to hear your Complaint, and en­quire into the Truth of it, and make Report to him, that he may direct what is right to be done; of this General Johnson gave you Notice, by a Letter, above a Year and an Half ago, and desired you to appoint a proper Time and Place to meet him on this Occasion, that the Affair might be speedily settled. I have waited ever since in Expectation that you would comply with General Johnson's Request; and I now inform you that I am, and at all Times shall be, ready, on my Part, to send the Proprietary Commissioners to support their Claim, whenever you shall appoint the Time and Place of Meeting; it is therefore your own Fault if the Matter is delayed any longer.

Addressing himself to the Seven Nations, be said,

Brothren of the Seven United Nations,

I have considered what you said to me on Behalf of the Conoys and the Nanticokes, who have some of their Brethren still remaining in the Province of Maryland: As I am not Go­vernor of that Province, I have no Power to order the People there to suffer their Relations to come away; I will, however, afford them all the Assistance I can, and will not only give the Messenger they send to Maryland a Passport, or safe Conduct, but will write to the Go­vernor, and request him to permit their Brethren to come away, without Interruption.

Brethren,

You desire me to make Satisfaction to your Cousins the Delawares for these Lands which they claim, as they often think of it; had you known, as well as I do, how groundless and unjust this Claim of theirs was, I am sure you would not have taken any Notice of it. Your old Men must remember, that at a full Council held with the Six Nations, at Philadelphia, in the Year 1742, the Claim the Delawares now make for these very Lands was laid before them, and the Deeds from them to the Proprietaries perused and considered by the Six Na­tions; who, upon a full Hearing of the Matter, then were convinced that the Proprietaries had fairly purchased them of the Delawares, and paid for them. Whereupon the Six Nations ordered the Delawares to remove off from them, and go to Wyoming, which they accordingly did. Teedyuscung, some Time ago, referred his Complaint about these Lands to our Great King, who has ordered General Johnson to enquire into the whole Matter, and let him know how it is circumstanced, that Justice may be done as well to the Delawares as to us; and I am ready to send my Commissioners to General Johnson, to lay before him the Proprietaries Deeds for, and Right to, these Lands, whenever Teedyuscung will appoint a Time and Place for this Purpose.

Tokahaio addressed the Governor, in Behalf of the Tuteloes, as follows.

Brother Onas,

We desire our Brother will be so good as to furnish us with three Waggons, to carry home our Sick, who are not able to walk, as we intend to go home as soon as we can; — which Request the Governor granted, and left the Number of Waggons to be provided for them, to the Direction of Joseph Fox, Esq

Tokahaio then added,

Brother Onas,

We have been here at this Council Fire, and heard what good Word you have spoke to We have no more to say at present, and we see likewise that you have nothing more to [Page 18]say to us; we are therefore going to part. When we return home, we will acquaint all our People with what we have heard. We heartily thank you for the good Usage we have re­ceived from you.

The Governor informed them that he had brought up with him a Present from the Go­vernment to them, which Mr. Fox would distribute amongst them To-morrow; and then concluded the Treaty, by shaking Hands with the Chiefs of the Indians.

In the Afternoon the Governor and his Company set out for Philadelphia.

THE END

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