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Beyond Penn's Treaty

Joshua Sharpless diaries, Vol. 1 1798

Page out of 92

and we understand by them that they mean to take it in
a narrow strip of half a Mile on each side of the river
which according to our observation, as far as we have
been on the river will take in most of the arable
Land near adjoining thereto, & a large proportion of
this is flats, subject at certain periods to be overflow’d
by fresher, which renders the local situation of these
people rather unfavourable to our plan as the over-
flowing of a great part of their most arable fertile possession
is a discouragement to agriculture, whilst a considerable
extent of mountainous & unarable adjoining Lands,
will probably be an inducement to a continuation of
their usual mode of subsistance.

About 3 Miles below this town is a saw Mill,
the private property of Cornplanter, tho’ built on the
Indian Lands; it is on a poor stream, & badly situa-
ted; subject to be stoped by back water when the River
is high, & when the Waters are low, it is almost dry. It
is now tended by a white Man, who is a Mill wright &
appears to be an ingenuous Man, particularly in Wood,
but we fear of a turn of mind not favourable to the Indians
real good, or to our concern, as we understand he keep
a supply of whisky, which he barters away to them for