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Mr. Adams, to be held good against | ties, and had eagerly appropriated him not only, but all future ' Yankee' the lands thus obtained by the Union, and 'Puritan' aspirants to the Presi- and passed directly over to her: but dency.
then, Georgia was a sovereign State, General Jackson was chosen Presi- and entitled to do as she liked with dent in 1828, receiving more than all the lands within her borders, and two-thirds of the Electoral votes, in- all the people living thereon, no matcluding those of all the Slave States ter if in flagrant violation of the laws but Delaware and a part of Mary- and treaties of the United States ! land. In Georgia, there were two And the new President did not scruJackson Electoral tickets run, but ple to assert and reiterate the unnone for Adams. And the first An- truth that the Creeks and Cherokees nual Message of the new President respectively were attempting to gave the Indians due notice that “erect an independent government Georgia had not so voted from blind within the limits of Georgia and impulse—that their dearest rights, Alabama," ringing all possible their most cherished possessions, were changes on the falsehood, and gravely among her “spoils of victory.” In quoting from the Constitution that this Message, the solemn obligations "No new State shall be formed or which our Government had volun- erected within the limits of any other teered to assume, in treaty after State,” as precluding the maintetreaty with the Creeks and Chero- nance by the Creeks and Cherokees kees, were utterly ignored, and the of their governments in territories rights and possessions of the Indians which they had possessed and govdealt with precisely as if no such erned long before Georgia had been treaties had ever existed! Georgia colonized, or the name Alabama inhad herself, through her citizens, vented. participated in negotiating, and,
This deliberate and flagrant perverthrough her Senators, united in rati-sion of the question to be decided fying those treaties; yet not only was persisted in through several was she held at liberty to disobey pages of the Message. Says the and trample on them, but the United President: States was regarded as equally ab
" Actuated by this view of the subject, I solved, by the convenient fiction of informed the Indians inhabiting parts of State Sovereignty, from all liability Georgia and Alabama that their
attempt to to maintain and enforce them! No not be countenanced by the Executive of the
ESTABLISH an independent gmcernment would one could deny that we had solemnly United States, and advised them to emigrate engaged, by repeated treaties, to pro- beyond the Mississippi, or submit to the
laws of those States." tect the Indians in the undisturbed use and enjoyment forever of the lands What the Indians demanded was which we had admitted to be, and simply that the portion of their immarked out as, theirs. No one could memorial possessions which they had deny that we had obtained large reserved for their own use and enjoycessions of valuable lands by these ment in making liberal cessions to treaties. No one doubted that Geor- our Government, should still be left gia had urged us to make these trea- 1 to them—that they should be protect
GEORGIA EXPELLING THE CHEROKEES.
ed in such enjoyment, by the United of whom each was to have a ticket. States, as we had solemnly stipulated A reservation of one hundred and by treaty that they should be, tak- sixty acres to each head of a Cheroing our pay for it in advance. But kee family was made; but this reserGeneral Jackson, in urging them to vation conferred or recognized only a migrate beyond the Mississippi, did right of possession during the good not hesitate to speak of their rights pleasure of the State Legislature, and their immunities as follows: The Indians, whose government was
“ This emigration should be voluntary; for thus abolished, were allowed no it would be as cruel as unjust to compel the voice in that to which they were arbiAborigines to abandon the graves of their fathers, and seek a home in a distant land. trarily subjected; they could not even But they should be distinctly informed that, give testimony in a Georgia court, if they remain within the limits of the States, they must be subject to their laws. In though denied a resort to other.
any return for their obedience, as individuals, The fortunate drawer of Cherokee they will, without a doubt, be protected in lands in the Georgia State lottery was the enjoyment of those possessions which they have improved by their industry. But entitled to call upon the Governor to it seems to me visionary to suppose that, in put him in summary possession, exthis state of things, claims can be allowed on pelling any adverse (Indian] claimduelt nor made improvements, merely because ant. If there were two or more they have seen them from the mountain, or antagonist white claimants, their repassed them in the chase. Submitting to the laws of the States, and receiving, like spective claims were to be deliberately other citizens, protection in their persons adjudicated by the courts, according and property, they will ere long become to the dictates of ordinary jurisprumerged in the mass of our population.”
dence. If any one sought to legally How “voluntary” their emigration hold or recover lands against a claimwas to be, and what sort of "protec- ant under this rule, he must make tion in their and property"
express affidavit that he they were likely to receive in case
was not liable to be dispossessed of said they refused to “abandon the graves land by or under any one of the provisions of their fathers, and seek a home in a
of the said act of the General Assembly
of Georgia, passed December 20, 1833 : distant land," let the laws which
in which issue the person to whom Georgia proceeded to enact bear wit- possession of said land was delivered shall
join: and which issue shall constitute the enness. Grown weary of awaiting the tire pleadings between the parties , nor shall operation of the methods whereby the court alloro any matter other than is conshe had already secured, at no cost to
tained in said issue to be placed upon the
regular files of said court; * * * shall herself, the gradual acquisition of said court, at the instance of either party, the greater part of the Indian lands pass any order, or grant any injunction, to within her borders when she acceded stay said cause, nor permit to be ingrafted
on said cause any other proceedings whatto the Union, that State passed acts ever." abolishing the government of the It can hardly be necessary to say Cherokees, and reducing them at a that the sole, unconcealed object of word to the condition of unprotected this legislation was to deprive the vassals. Their lands were thereupon Cherokees of the protection of the divided into counties, surveyed, and courts of the United States, or any ordered to be distributed by lottery adjudication therein touching their among the white citizens of the State, rights, by precluding any appeal to
said courts for the sake of testing the of Georgia, holding that the treaties validity of these acts of the Legisla- between the United States and the ture of Georgia.
Cherokees were valid and binding on That State had already decisively all the States, and paramount to all indicated that, if unable to make or State laws, according to that proviscontrol such adjudication, she was ion of the Federal Constitution which abundantly ready to defy it.
prescribes : A Cherokee named Tassells was arrested on a Georgia warrant for kill the laws of the United States which shall be
" Article VI., $ 2. This Constitution, and ing another Indian within the Cher- made in pursuance thereof; and all treaties okee territory. His counsel obtained made, or which shall be made, under the
authority of the United States, shall be the a writ of error from a United States
supreme laro of the land ; and the judges in court, requiring Georgia to show cause every State shall be bound thereby, anything why he should not be discharged and in the constitution or laws of any State to
the contrary notwithstanding." his case remitted to the Cherokee authorities, according to existing treaties. The attorneys for the missionaries Georgia defied the writ and hung the sought to have this judgment enIndian. And this finished the case. forced, but could not. General Jack
Some time thereafter, two mission- son was President, and would do aries of the American Board among nothing of the sort. “ Well: John the Cherokees were arrested on a Geor- Marshall has made his decision : gia process, tried for, and convicted now let him enforce it !"4 was his of, inciting the Indians to resist the commentary on the matter. So the policy of the State of Georgia de missionaries languished years in prissigned to effect the expulsion of the on, and the Cherokees were finally Indians from her soil. They were of (1838) driven into exile, in defiance course sentenced to the State Prison. of the mandate of our highest judiThey appealed by writ of error to cial tribunal." Georgia was permitthe courts of the United States, and ted to violate the faith of solemn the final adjudication thereon was treaties and defy the adjudications of had before the Supreme Court at our highest court. South Carolina Washington, the decision being pro- was put down in a similar attempt: nounced by Chief Justice Marshall. for the will of Andrew Jackson, not It was entirely in favor of the mis- the Constitution, was in those years sionaries and against the pretensions “the supreme law of the land." **
27 I am indebted for this fact to the late Gov. "refused to sustain those Southern tribes in ernor George N. Briggs, of Massachusetts, who their attempt to set up an independent governwas in Washington as a member of Congress
ment within the States of Alabama and Georgia. " when the decision was rendered.
Both these gentlemen well knew-Colonel 28 President Jackson, in his first Annual Mes- Benton could not but know—that the Cherokees sage, already referred to, had said:
only claimed or sought the rights which they "A portion of the Southern tribes, having had possessed and enjoyed from time immemomingled much with the whites, and made some rial, which were solemnly guaranteed to them progress in the arts of civilized life, have lately by treaty after treaty, whereof the subsisting attempted to erect an independent government within the limits of the States of Georgia and validity and pertinence were clearly affirmed Alabama."
by the tribunal of ultimate resort. And Colonel Benton, in his “Thirty Years' 29 The late Jeremiah Evarts, long the efficient View," says (vol. i., p. 164), General Jackson and honored Secretary of the American Board
ABOLITION IN THE REVOLUTIONARY AGE.
THE RISE AND PROGRESS OF ABOLITION.
The General Congress which con- | Abolition Societies were largely comvened at Philadelphia in 1774, framed posed of the most eminent as well as articles of Association between the the worthiest citizens. Among them colonies, one of which was a solemn were, in Maryland, Samuel Chase, agreement “that we will neither im- a signer of the Declaration, and port nor purchase any slave imported Luther Martin, one of the framers after the 1st of December next;" be- of the Constitution; in Delaware, ing moved thereto by State action of James A. Bayard, afterward in like character, wherein Virginia and Congress, and Cæsar A. Rodney, North Carolina were honorably con- who became Attorney-General. The spicuous. Most of the States, accord- Pennsylvania Society had Benjaingly, prohibited the Slave - Trade min Franklin for its President, during or soon after the Revolution. and Benjamin Rush for Secretary Throughout the war for indepen--both signers of the Declaration. dence, the Rights of Man were pro- This,' among other such societies, claimed as the great objects of our memorialized the first Federal Construggle. General Gates, the hero gress, then sitting at Philadelphia, of Saratoga, emancipated his slaves against Slavery, asking in 1780. The first recorded Aboli
“that you will be pleased to countenance tion Society—that of Pennsylvania the restoration to liberty of those unhappy - was formed in 1774. The New
men who, alone in this land of freedom, are York Manumission Society was found- amid the general joy of surrounding free
degraded into perpetual bondage, and who, ed in 1785: John Jay was its first men, are groaning in servile subjection ; President; Alexander Hamilton its that you will devise means for removing
this inconsistency of character from the second. Rhode Island followed in American people; that you will promote 1786; Maryland in 1789; Connecti- mercy and justice toward this distressed cut in 1790; Virginia in 1791; New race; and that you will step to the very
verge of the power vested in you for disJersey in 1792. The discovery that couraging every species of traffic in the persuch societies were at war with the
sons of our fellow-men." Federal Constitution, or with the Congress courteously received this reciprocal duties of citizens of the and similar memorials, calmly conseveral States, was not made till sidered them, and decided that it had nearly forty years afterward. These no power to abolish Slavery in the of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, who de sonal dignity and independence to the capricious voted the best of his life to the cause of the mandate of party discipline, the slaveholders Cherokees, has summed up, in a letter to a sym
would not have received aid enough to carry pathizing friend, his convictions as to the ulti
their point."-Life of Jeremiah Evarts, Boston,
1845, p. 367. mate cause of the perfidy and oppression of which they were the victims :
1 Father of one of her present U. S. Senators. “Without that disregard of human rights which is to be found among slaveholders only,
? Franklin, then 84 years of age, signed this nothing could have been done against the Indi memorial on the 3d of February, 1790, and died mans; and without the base surrender of all per on the 17th of April following.
States which saw fit to authorize and New York provided for Gradual cherish it. There was no exoitement, Emancipation in 1799. In 1817, a no menace, no fury. South Carolina further act was passed, decreeing that and Georgia, of course, opposed the there should be no Slavery in the prayer, but in parliamentary lan. State after the 4th of July, 1827. guage. It is noteworthy, that among Ten thousand slaves were set free at those who leaned furthest toward the once by this act. petitioners were Messrs. Parker and New Jersey passed an act, in 1804, Page, of Virginia—the latter in due designed to put an end to Slavery. time her Governor. They urged, not It was so very gradual in its operathat the prayer should be granted, tion, that the census of 1840 reported but that the memorial be referred, six hundred and seventy-four slaves and respectfully considered.
as still held in that State.
The frequently reiterated Southern Vermont framed a State Constitu- assertion that the Northern States tion in 1777, and embodied in it a “sold their slaves to the South, and Bill of Rights, whereof the first arti- then abolished Slavery,” is abundantcle precluded Slavery.
ly refuted. Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts framed a constitu- and doubtless most other States, by tion in 1780, wherein was embodied their acts of emancipation, imposed a Declaration of Rights, affirming severe penalties on the exportation that
of slaves. Delaware, though a Slave “ All men are born free and equal, and State, long since did. and still does, have certain natural, essential, and inaliena- the same. ble rights, among which are the right of enjoying and defending their lives and liberties, and that of acquiring, possessing, and The North emerged from the Misprotecting property.'
souri struggle chafed and mortified. The Supreme Court of that State, It felt that, with Right and Power upon the first case arising which in- both on its side, it had been badly volved the question, decided that this beaten, through the treachery of cerprovision had abolished Slavery. tain of its own representatives, whom
New Hampshire was, in like man- it proceeded to deal with accordingly. ner, held to have abolished Slavery Few, indeed_hardly one of those by her Constitution, framed in 1783. Northern members who had sided
Pennsylvania passed a Gradual with the South in that struggle were Emancipation Act, March 1, 1780. reëlected. That lesson given, what All persons born in that State after more could be done! Missouri was that day, were to be free at the age in the Union, and could not be turned of twenty-eight.
Arkansas was organized as a Rhode Island provided by law that | Slave Territory, and would in due all persons born in that State after time become a Slave State. What March, 1784, should be free.
use in protracting an agitation which Connecticut, in 1784, passed an had no longer a definite object? Mr. act providing for gradual Abolition. Monroe had just been reëlected PresiShe had still two thousand seven dent, and the harmony of the party hundred and fifty-nine slaves in 1790. would be disturbed by permitting