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Beyond Penn's Treaty

Committee on Indian Concerns Scrapbook

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Agreeable to the request of some of the committee
I shall endeavour to state the present condition of the onondaga

they have 7000-two hundred acres of land of which
I should judge theres is from 5 to 700 acres under
partial improvement; besides they have bought a tract
of land of the Seneca tribe lying on tontawonta Creek
6 miles long and 4 broad for which they have agreed
to pay $3000 and apply a portion of their annuity
yearly to that purpose there are of all classes residing here
about 320 and there are as near as I can learn from 30
to 50 familys of this tribe residing at buffaloe and
tontawonta on their new purchase those that Live
here have 18 yoke of working oxen besides those belonging to
friends 3 yoke of which blong to the nation at Cangee
the others to individuals they have 146 cows and other
cattle together with 36 horse kind a greater part that may be
properly termed colts not more than 4 8 pair of working
horses and those not very valuable they have one cart which
blongs to the nation and 6 waggons which are individuals and
I should say not less than 30 ploughs a few of which belong to the
nation at large after makeing the above statement I think
may be proper to inform friends how we have
proceded since being here and also to suggest to friends the propriety
of some things that apear to us to be absolutely necessary
in to attain the object in view. We arrived here the fore part
of 10th mo. Last the natives received us in a friendly manner
but yet with that shyness that so universally conspicuous
in the indian character. Yet they furnished us with the
best house they had which far from being confortable for
a family to live in and for five on six weeks after our
arrival I could not prevail upon them to do any thing
whether it was on account of a fear of being deceived or on
account of its being in the time of one of their annual feasts I
have not been able to learn although their eyes seemed
to be continuously fixed on me in almost every thing that I
did there fore during the time I mentioned I diligently set
about doing anything that appeared to me to be necessary
to be done as though I had been on a farm of my own and pretty
soon found they were pleased with it, and after the time
abovementioned had elapsed what was left at home which was but few
most of the young men being gone to their winters hunt
came forward and went to work and we succeded in getting up
a comfortable shop and in cutting and burning a sufficient
Quantity of coal for a years stock which has enabled me to do
considerable smith work which was very much needed and there is
still as much work as it will be posible for one fire to do and
blow steadily I may here note that they selected three young men
to Learn the trade one of which is to work with me who behaves
steadily and well and has made quite a considerable progress in the
business for the time. after bein here 2 or 3 months my mind
was arrested with the propriety of a Schools being established
amongst them yet differing from the common way in which
Schools are taught to be so calculated as in a very considerable
degree to embrace the fernale part of the children as the
education and cultivation of this looked to me to be a very
essential object to attain