Personal Memoirs of a Residence of Thirty Years with the Indian Tribes on the American Frontiers eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 811 pages of information about Personal Memoirs of a Residence of Thirty Years with the Indian Tribes on the American Frontiers.

     A forest flower, but few so well could claim
     A daughter’s, sister’s, and a Christian’s name.

CHAPTER LVII.

Home matters—­Massachusetts Historical Society—­Question of the U.S.  Senate’s action on certain treaties of the Lake Indians—­Hugh L. White—­Dr. Morton’s Crania Americana—­Letter from Mozojeed—­State of the pillagers—­Visit of Dr. Follen and Miss Martineau—­Treaty movements—­Young Lord Selkirk—­Character and value of Upper Michigan—­Hon. John Norvell’s letter—­Literary Items—­Execution of the treaty of March 28th—­Amount of money paid—­Effects of the treaty—­Baron de Behr—­Ornithology.

1836. June 16th.  My winter in Washington had thrown my correspondence sadly in the rear.  Most of my letters had been addressed to me directly at Mackinack, and they were first read several months after date.  Whilst at the seat of government my duties had been of an arduous character, and left me but little time on my hands.  And now, that I had got back to my post in the interior, the duties growing out of the recent treaties had been in no small degree multiplied.  While preparing for the latter, the former were not, however, to be wholly neglected, or left unnoticed.  I will revert to them.

April 28th.  The Massachusetts Historical Society this day approved a report from a committee charged with the subject—­“That, in their opinion, the dissertation on the Odjibwa language with a vocabulary of the same, contemplated by Mr. Schoolcraft, would be a suitable and valuable contribution to our collections, and that he be requested to proceed and complete the work, and transmit it to the society for publication.”  This was communicated to me by Hon. Thomas L. Winthrop, their president, on the 2d of May, and opened an eligible way for my bringing forward my investigations of this language, without expense to myself.  The difficulty now was, that the offer had come, at a time when it was impossible to complete the paper.  I was compelled to defer it till the pressure of business, which now began to thicken on my hands, should abate.  It was in this manner, and in the hope that the next season would afford me leisure, that the matter was put off, from time to time, till it was in a measure cast behind and out of sight, and not from a due appreciation of the offer.

May 17th In the letter of appointment to me, of this date, from the Secretary of War, to treat with the Saginaws, it is stated:  “You are authorized to offer them the proceeds which their lands may bring, deducting such expenses as may be necessary for its survey, sale, &c.  You will take care that a sufficient fund is reserved to provide for their removal, and such arrangements made for the security and application of the residue as will be most beneficial to them.”  These instructions were carried out, in articles of a compact, in which the government furthermore agreed, in view of the lands not being immediately brought into market, to make a reasonable advance to these Indians.  Yet the Senate rejected it, not, it would seem, for the liberality of the offer of the nett proceeds of the lands, but for the almost per necessitate offer of a moderate advance, to enable the people to turn themselves in straitened circumstances, which had been the prime motive for selling.

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Personal Memoirs of a Residence of Thirty Years with the Indian Tribes on the American Frontiers from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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