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Beyond Penn's Treaty

Committee on Indian Concerns Scrapbook

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General Remarks.

After having spent several months in
travelling among the Indians located on our
western frontier; and having used our ut-
most endeavours to gather such facts and
information as we apprehended might be
useful or interesting to our Society and the
Community at large; we deem it right for
us to submit points; for the future con-
sideration and action of the Society of Friends
on behalf of the Aborigines of our land.

During our visit among the Indians
many circumstances were apparent, which in our
opinion tended to prevent thier advancement
in civilization and otherways.

We are aware that much labour and prop-
erty is expended yearly on thier behalf, and yet
it is sad to relate that these poor benighted and
almost friendless beings are daily diminishing in
numbers, and sinking deeper and deeper in misery
and woe.

There are but few to look into thier
wants, or to raise a voice against the mal-practices
of the numerous unprincipaled white men who
infest thier country in order to obtain the mon-
ey annually paid to them; and
at the same time are practising the most degra-
ding and immoral conduct.

If the hand of the destroyer is not spee-
dily staid, in all human probability it will be but
a few years before this once numerous race will
be numbered with the nations are not.

Nearly all the Tribes are decreasing yearly,
and some of them at the rapid rate of from tw-
elve to twenty per cent.

The present condition of the elder part
of the uncivilized Tribes is such (having long been
a prey to the unprincipaled white men,) that we
can not look for much change for the better
in many of them--yet in beholding the younger
men and women, and the little children, who all
appeared endowed with talents for improvement
equal to the whites, we were encouraged to look
forward with a hope of better days, for this poor
unfortunate and almost friendless people, if the
christian community should without delay use
thier influence to remove the prominent obstacles
now in the way of thier civilization.

First, we would remark that the Indians
who have been removed from the east to the west
side of the Mississippi River appear to be in an
unsettled state, and entertain fears of being again
removed. They say they have no guarantee from

, that they shall remain on these lands
any longer time than it may suit the convinience
of the whites; and some of them are desirous that
friends should use thier influence to have thier
lands secured to them, in fee simple for ever; that
thier fears on this account may be quieted, and
they encouraged to lay up something for themselves
and thier children.

Secondly--Nearly all the Tribes have annuities
paid them in goods or money, quite sufficient in
most cases to make them comforable during the
year, if rightly applied. Each Tribe recieves all
thier money at one payment, and this money passes
from them in the course of a few days; and in
nearly every instance the poor ignorant Indian has
nothing of value to show for it, but is in fact
made more miserable on account of it

We would suggest to the Committee that it
may be proper for our Society to use thier influ-
ence, in endeavouring to bring about a change
in the manner in which these payments are
made, so as to place thier money if possible, out
of the reach of whiskey sellers, licensed traders and
agents of the Fur companies.

We are aware, that to effect such a change
would be attended with much diffuculty; but the good
that would arise to the Indians would warrant friends
in making some sacrifice, to effect so desirable an

The Indians in thier present state are very
improvident; and in most cases incapable of
managing thier affairs, and expending thier money