THE OHIO VALLEY-GREAT LAKES ETHNOHISTORY
ARCHIVES: THE MIAMI COLLECTION
It is noted that the following work from the Miami Archives should be read and considered within the historical context in which it was composed and printed. The opinions expressed and the language used do not reflect the opinions or standards of the Glenn A. Black Laboratory of Archaeology, but are, rather, indicative of thought in that historical moment during which the document was published.
(June 3, 1773)
Gage, Thomas in: Library of
Congress, British Museum,
Additional MS. 21665,
New York June 3d 1773
You are referred in these Matters to Sir William Johnson, and Mr Stuart and I give you a Copy of my Letters to them desiring they wou'd report to you all Matters relative to their Department.
Among the various Tribes, Reports of the bad Designs of many are frequently reported, and often upon little Foundation, but from Lawless and licentious Traders, and frontier People, and drunken and insolent Indians there are frequent Quarrells and Murders reciprocally committed which give Trouble.
Indian Business at present of most Moment is the Northern and Western Confederacies. The Northern Nations ceded Tracts of Land at the Treaty of Fort Stanwix, inconvenient to the Indians of the Ohio, which exasperated them to a great Degree, but finding themselves too weak alone for the six Nations, they have been, and appear still to be endeavoring to form a general Union of all the Western & Southern Nations, and the Shawnese are supposed to be the Contrivers of the Scheme. The six Nations in Return have strengthened their Alliance with the Canada and other Tribes. The six Nations have by Deputy's sent to Scioto threatened much, but Nothing has been undertaken openly on either Side.
The Indians who have appeared the most hostile towards us, are the three Nations on the Ouabache, & the [Pottawatomies] of St Josephs, the former have at times killed Soldiers, as well as British Traders and Settlers at the Ilinois, insomuch that it was judged necessary to chastise them; the six Nations killed six or seven of them last Year, and sent a Message threatening them with War, which it is presumed will render them more (f. 142) peacable, and a Deputy of Sir William Johnsons has been ordered to Scioto to look after the Nations in those Quarters. It has very often been reported, that the French and Spaniards have excited the Nations against the English, and been the Authors of many Mischiefs, tho' it has not been discovered that the Spanish Government has had any Concern therein. But it is probable the Traders at the Ilinois as well British, as Spanish Subjects have been guilty of such iniquitous Practices to keep the trade to themselves.
A Trader and his Servants have been attacked at St Joseph by the [Pottawatomies], and some killed on both Sides. a Frenchman who has resided long at St Joseph is suspected to have excited the Savages to this Mischief, and has been before suspected of like Practices, for within these two or three Years, many Traders have been killed by the Poueteatamies [Pottawatomies], and their Effects plundered. It is become proper to take Measures to stop such horrid Proceedings, and Major Bassett 10th: Regimt: Commanding at Detroit is ordered to enquire into the Affair, and demand Satisfaction. You have herewith a Copy of his Letter, and my answer on this Head.
Sir William Johnson having held a Congress lately with the six Nations, you have a Copy thereof, which will show you that they mean to bring the Western Nations to Reason without Delay, and that they have sent a Belt to the Poueteatamies [Pottawatomies] concerning the Murthers at St Josephs.
I am with great Regard Sir,
to TOC, p. 21
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