The Canadian Brothers, or the Prophecy Fulfilled a Tale of the Late American War — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 533 pages of information about The Canadian Brothers, or the Prophecy Fulfilled a Tale of the Late American War — Complete.

“Among the more intelligent classes of our citizens, in the highest possible,” was the reply; “but by those who are not so capable of judging, and who only see, in the indomitable courage and elevated talents of the patriot hero, the stubborn inflexibility of the mere savage, he is looked upon far less flatteringly.  By all, however, is he admitted to be formidable without parallel, in the history of Indian warfare.  His deeds are familiar to all, and his name is much such a bugbear to American childhood, as Marlborough’s was in France, and Napoleon’s is in England.  It is a source of much regret to our Government never to have been enabled to conciliate this extraordinary man.”

“What more feasible,” remarked the General, but with a tone and manner that could not possibly give offence; “had not the difficulty been of its own creation?  Treaty after treaty, you most admit, Major, had been made and violated under various pretexts, while the real motive —­the aggrandizement of territories already embracing a vast portion of their early possessions—­was carefully sought to be concealed from these unfortunate people.  How was it to be expected then that a man, whom the necessities of his country had raised up to itself in the twofold character of statesman and warrior—­one gifted with a power of analyzing motives which has never been surpassed in savage life—­how, I ask, was it to be expected that he, with all these injuries of aggression staring him in the face, should have been won over by a show of conciliation, which long experience, independently of his matured judgment, must have assured him was only held forth to hoodwink, until fitting opportunity should be found for again throwing off the mask.”

“To the charge of violating treaties,” returned Major Montgomerie, who took the opposite argument in perfectly good part, “I fear, General, our Government must to a certain extent plead guilty—­much, however, remains to be said in excuse.  In the first place, it must be borne in mind that the territory of the United States, unlike the kingdoms of Europe, has no fixed or settled boundary whereby to determine its own relative bearing.  True it is, that we have the Canadas on one portion of our frontier, but this being a fixed line of demarcation, there can exist no question as to a mutual knowledge of the territorial claims of both countries.  Unlike that of the old world, however, our population is rapidly progressing, and where are we to find an outlet for tax surplus of that population unless, unwilling as we are to come into collision with our mere civilised neighbours, we can push them forward into the interior.  In almost all the contracts entered into by our Government with the Indians, large sums have been given for the lands ceded by the latter.  This was at once, of course, a tacit and mutual revocation of any antecedent arrangements, and if instances have occurred wherein the sacredness of treaty has been violated, it has only been where the Indians have refused to part with their lands for the proffered consideration and when those lands have been absolutely indispensable to our agricultural purposes.  Then indeed has it been found necessary to resort to force.  That this principle of “might being the better right,” may be condemned in limine it is true, but how otherwise, with a superabundant population, can we possibly act?”

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The Canadian Brothers, or the Prophecy Fulfilled a Tale of the Late American War — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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