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Beyond Penn's Treaty

A Series of letters written on a Journey to the Oneida, Onondago, and Cayuga Tribes of the Five Nations

Page out of 56

of Fort Stanwix

, in 1784, reserved to themselves a Tract of about
twenty miles square, well watered by several beautiful streams
upon the border of a charming lake, abounding with Fish. Of
this however they have since given away one fourth to the different
Tribes that have claimed that protection kin with them. When they were
asked to sell they replied: No, we will not sell our Land,
to our own Flesh and blood: but we will give you what you
want. Another fourth they have lately sold to the State of
New York, I understand at a dollar an acre (now selling again
at four and five). The purchase money however is funded, and
yields them four or five thousand dollars a year, part of which
is to be vested in Saw Mills, Grist Mills, & & and the remain
der of in good hands would soon stock their land and enable them
to live far better than People generally do, even in our happy
Country. But with all these advantages they drone away their
lives supinely in idleness and want; their former occupations of fighting
hunting & naturally ceasing on the White Settlers increase
and no new plans having been yet adopted.
about them, they are now about 600, tho continually lessening
while the other Tribes on this Reservation, who till their land, encrease in a rate
that would double their numbers in about 30 years. They
received us kindly, and expressed their willingness to adopt
our proposals for their gradual civilization, saying the compact
between our Forefathers was made a great while ago: but now
it begins to take effect. Here we think to make our first
Their principal Chief, called Seanmadoa, appears to be a Man in whom the
utmost confidence may be placed. He is as firm and erect at 78 as our People
usually are at 60