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A frequent ground of accusation against the Indians', is their disregard of treaties', and the treachery and wantonness with which', in time of apparent peace', they will suddenly fly to hostilities'. The intercourse of the white men with the Indians', however', is too apt to be cold', distrustful', oppressive', and insulting': They seldom treat them with that confidence and frankness which are indispensable to real friendship'; nor is sufficient caution observed not to offend against those feelings of pride or superstition', which often prompt the Indian to hostility quicker than mere considerations of interest'. The solitary savage'. feels silently', but'. . acutely'. His sensibilities are not diffused over so wide a surface as those of the white man'; but they run in steadier and deeper channels'. His pride', his affections', his superstitions', are all directed towards fewer objects'; but the wounds inflicted on them', are proportionably severe', and furnish motives of hostility which we cannot sufficiently appre. ciate'. Where a community is also limited in number', and forms one great patriarchal family', as in an Indian tribe', the injury of an individual', is the injuryo of the whole'; and the sentiment of vengeance is almost instantaneously diffused'. One council-fire is sufficient for the discussion and arrangement of a plan of hostilities'. Here', all the fighting men and sages assemble'. Eloquence and superstition'.. combine to inflame the minds of the warriours'. The orator' .. awakens their martial ardour', and they are wrought up to a kind of religious desperation by the visions of the prophet and the dreamer'.
Truits of Indian Character-Continued.-IB. We stigmatize the Indians', also', as cowardly and treacherous', because they use stratagem in warfare', in preference to open force'; but', if courage intrinsically consists in the defiance of danger and pain', the life of the Indian is a continual ex. hibition of it'. He lives in a state of perpetual hostility and risk'. Peril and adventured are congenial to his nature'; or', rather', seem necessary to arouse his faculties', and to give an interest to his existence'. Surrounded by hostile tribes', whose mode of warfare is by ambush and surprisal', he is always prepared for fight', and lives with his weapons in his hands', As the ship’.. careers in fearful singleness through the solitudes of ocean', -as the bird'.. mingles among clouds and storms, and wings its way', a mere speck', across the pathless fields of air', so the Indian holds his course', silent', solitary', but un daunted',, through the boundless bosom of the wilderness'. His expeditions may vie in distance and danger with the pilgrimage of the devotee', or the crusade of the knight-errant'. He traverses vast forests', exposed to the hazards of lonely sickness', of lurking enemies', and pining famine'. Stormy lakes', those great inland seas', are no obstacles to his wanderings': in his light canoe of bark', he sports', like a feather', on their waves', and darts', with the swiftness of an arrow', down the roaring rapids of the rivers'. His very subsistence' .. is snatched from the midst of toil and peril'. He gains his food by the hardships and dangers of the chase'; he wraps himself in the spoils of the bear', the panther', and the buffalo'; and sleeps among the thunders of the cataract'.
*Ap-på'rènt. Kon'fe-dense-not, dunse. In'ju're—not, in'je'rė. dAd-vèn'tshåre. Nå'tshåre. 'Hôs'til.
No hero of ancient or modern days can surpass the Indian in his lofty contempt of death', and the fortitude with which he sustains its cruelest affliction'. Indeed', we here behold him rising superiour to the white man', in consequence of his peculiar education. The latter' .. rushes to glorious death'.. at the cannon's mouth'; the former'.. calmly contemplates its approach', and triumphantly endures it', amidst the varied torments of surrounding foes', and the protracted agonies of fire'. He even takes a pride in taunting his persecutors', and provoking their ingenuity of torture';' and', as the devouring flames prey
very vitals', and the flesh shrinks from the sinews', he raises his last song of triumph', breathing the defiance of an unconquered heart', and invoking the spirits of his fathers to witness'... that he dies without a groan'.
Notwithstanding the obloquy with which the early historians have overshadowed the characters of the unfortunate natives', some bright gleams occasionally break through', which throw 'a degree of melancholy lustre on their memories'. Facts are occasionally to be met with in the rude annals of the eastern provinces', which', though recorded with the colouring of prejudice and bigotry', yet speak for themselves'; and will be dwelt on with applause and sympathy', when prejudice shall have passed away'.
In one of the homely narratives of the Indian wars in NewEngland', there is a touching account of the desolation carried
*Un-dånt'èd. båne'tshent. cTànt’ing: Tor'tshåre. •Prèj'd-disnot, prej'e-dis. Dès'-O-la'shún—not, des'l-a-shun.
ja o all being
into the tribe of the Pequod Indians'. Humanity shrinks from the cold-blooded detail of indiscriminate butchery'. In one place we read of the surprisal of an Indian fort in the night', when the wigwams were wrapped in flames', and the miserable inhabitants shot down and slain in attempting to escape', despatched and ended in the course of an hour'." After a series of similar transactions', “our soldiers',” as the historian piously observes', “ being resolved', by God's assistance', to make a final destruction of them'," the unhappy savages being hunted from their homes and fortresses', and pursued with fire and sword',' a scanty but gallant band', the sad remnant of the Pequod warriours', with their wives and children',“ took refuge in a swamp'.
Burning with indignation', and rendered sullen by despair';d with hearts bursting with grief at the destruction of their tribe', and spirits galled and sore at the fancied ignominy of their defeat', they refused to ask their lives at the hands of an insulting foe', and preferred death to submission'.
As the night drew on', they were surrounded in their dismal retreat', so as to render escape' impracticable'. Thus situated', their
enemy “plied them with shot all the time', by which means many were killed and buried in the mire'.” In the dark. ness and fog that preceded the dawn of day', some few broke through the besiegers and escaped into the woods': “ the rest were left to the conquerors', of which many were killed in the swamp', like sullen dogs', who would rather', in their self-willedness and madness', sit still and be shot through', or cut to pieces',” than implore for mercy'. When the day broke upon this handfull of forlorn but dauntless spirits', the soldiers', we are told', enter. ing the swamp', “ saw several heaps of them sitting close together', upon whom they discharged their pieces', laden with ten or. twelve pistol-bullets at a time'; putting the muzzles of the pieces under the boughs', within a few yards of them'; so as', besides those that were found dead', many more were killed and sunk into the mire', and never were minded more by friend or foe'."
Can any one read this plain', unvarnished tale', without admiring the stern resolution', the unbending pride', the loftiness of spirit', that seemed to nerve the hearts of these self-taught heroes', and to raise them above the instinctive feelings of human nature'? When the Gauls laid waste the city of Rome', they found the senators clothed in their robes', and seated with stern tranquillity in their curule chairs': in this manner they suffered
é-skåpe'-not, es-kápe'. Sord. •Tshildren-not, tshll'drun. dDe. spåre'—not, dis-påre.
death without resistance or even supplication'. Such conduct was', in them', applauded as noble and magnanimous'-in the hapless Indians', it was reviled as obstinate and sullen'. How truly are we the dupes of show and circumstance'! How different is virtue', clothed in purple and enthroned in state', from virtue', naked and destitute', and perishing obscurely in a wil. derness'!"
But I forbear to dwell on these gloomy pictures'. The eastern tribes have long since disappeared'; the forests that sheltered them have been laid low'; and scarce any traces remain of them in the thickly-settled states of New-England', excepting here and there the Indian name of a village or a stream'. And such must', sooner or later', be the fate of those other tribes which skirt the frontiers', and have occasionally been inveigled from their forests to mingle in the wars of the white men'. In a little while', and they will go the way that their brethren have gone before'. The few hordes which still linger about the shores of Huron and Superiour', and the tributary streams of the Mississippi', will share the fate of those tribes that once spread over Massachusetts and Connecticut', and lorded it along the proud banks of the Hudson'; of that gigantick race', said to have existed on the borders of the Susquehanna'; and of those various nations that flourished about the Potomack and the Rappahannock', and that peopled the forests of the vast valley of Shenandoah'. They will vanish', like a vapour', from the face of the earth'; their very history will be lost in forgetfulness', and “the places that now know them', will know them no more for ever!" Or if', perchance', some dubious memorial of them should survive', it may be', in the romantick dreams of the poet', to people', in imagination', his glades and groves', like the fauns and satyrs and sylvan deities of antiquity'. But', should he venture upon the dark story of their wrongs and wretchedness'; should he tell how they were invaded', corrupted', despoiled'; driven from their native abodes and the sepulchres of their fathers'; hunted like wild beasts about the earth'; and sent down with violence and butchery, to the grave'.... posterity will either turn with horrour and incredulity from the tale', or blush with indignation at the inhumanity of their forefathers'. - We are driven back',” said an old warriour', “ until we can retreat no farther'- -our- hatchets'. . are broken', our bows'. . areb
*Re-zistånse-not, ré-zist’unse. bár-not, dre. Wil'důr'nès pot wil'důr-nis. dPlk'tshårez-not, pik'tshůrz. Ven'tshåre. Vl'B'lensenot, vi-a'lunse.
snapped', our fires' : • are' nearly extinguished'-a little longer and the white man will cease to persecute us', for we'.... shall cease to exist'!"
Speech of Logan, Chief of the Mingoes.--JEFFERSON. I may challenge the whole of the orations of Demosthenes and Cicero, and, indeed, of any more eminent orators, if Europe, or the world, has surnished more eminent, to produce a single passage superiour to the speech of Logan, a Mingo chief, deliv. ered to Lord Dunmore, when governour of Virginia. testimony of Indian talents in this line, I beg leave to introduce it, by first stating the incidents necessary for understanding it..
In the spring of the year 1774, a robbery was committed by some Indians upon certain land adventurers on the Ohio river. The whites in that quarter, according to their custom, undertook to punish this outrage in a summary way. Captain Michael Cresap and one Daniel Greathouse, leading on these parties, surprised, at different times, travelling and hunting parties of the Indians, who had their women and children with them, and murdered many. Among these were unfortunately the family of Logan, a chief celebrated in peace and war, and long distinguished as the friend of the whites. This unworthy return provoked his vengeance. He accordingly signalized himself in the war which ensued. In the autumn of the same year a decisived battle was fought at the mouth of the Great Kenhaway, between the collected forces of the Shawnese, the Mingoes, and the Delawares, and a detachment of the Virginia militia. The Indians were defeated, and sued for peace. Logan, however, disdained to be seen among the suppliants : but, lest the sincerity of a treaty, from which so distinguished a chief absented himself, should be distrusted, he sent, by a messenger, the following speech to be delivered to Lord Dunmore.
“I appeal to any white man to say', if ever he entered Logan's cabin hungry', and he gave him not meat'; if ever he came cold and naked', and he clothed him not'. During the course of the last long and bloody war', Logan remained idle in his cabin', an advocate for peace'. Such was my love for the whites', that my countrymen pointed as they passed', and said', •Logan is the friend of the white men':' I had even thought
*år. In'sé 'dents. Wér. De-sl'siv. Kén-håw'wa.