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Formation of the United States


for paying their proportion shall be laid and levied by the authority and direction of the legislatures of the district, or districts, or new States, as in the original States, within the time agreed upon by the United States in Congress assembled. The legislatures of those districts, or new States, shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil by the United States in Congress assembled, nor with any regulations Congress may find necessary for securing the title in such soil to the bona-fide purchasers. No tax shall be imposed on lands the property of the United States; and in no case shall non-resident proprietors be taxed higher than residents. The navigable waters leading into the Mississippi and Saint Lawrence, and the carrying places between the same, shall be common highways, and forever free, as well to the inhabitants of the said territory as to the citizens of the United States, and those of any other States that may be admitted into the confederacy, without any tax, impost, or duty therefor.


There shall be formed in the said territory not less than three nor more than five States; and the boundaries of the States, as soon as Virginia shall alter her act of cession and consent to the same, shall become fixed and established as follows, to wit: The western State, in the said territory, shall be bounded by the Mississippi, the Ohio, and the Wabash Rivers; a direct line drawn from the Wabash and Post Vincents, due north, to the territorial line between the United States and Canada; and by the said territorial line to the Lake of the Woods and Mississippi. The middle State shall be bounded by the said direct line, the Wabash from Post Vincents to the Ohio, by the Ohio, by a direct line drawn due north from the mouth of the Great Miami to the said territorial line, and by the said territorial line. The eastern State shall be bounded by the last-mentioned direct line, the Ohio, Pennsylvania, and the said territorial line: Provided, however, And it is further understood and declared, that the boundaries of these three States shall be subject so far to be altered, that, if Congress shall hereafter find it expedient, they shall have authority to form one or two States in that part of the said territory


Formation of the United States

which lies north of an east and west line drawn through the southerly bend or extreme of Lake Michigan. And whenever any of the said States shall have sixty thousarid free inhabitants therein, such State shall be admitted by its delegates, into the Congress of the United States, on an equal footing with the original States, in all respects whatever; and shall be at liberty to form a permanent constitution and State government: Provided, The constitution and government, so to be formed, shall be republican, and in conformity to the principles contained in these articles, and, so far as it can be consistent with the general interest of the confederacy, such admission shall be allowed at an earlier period, and when there may be a less number of free inhabitants in the State than sixty thousand.

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There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in the said territory, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted: Provided always, That any person escaping into the same, from whom labor or service is lawfully claimed in any one of the original States, such fugitive may be lawfully reclaimed, and conveyed to the person claiming his or her labor or service as aforesaid.

Be it ordained by the authority aforesaid, That the resolutions of the 23d of April, 1784, relative to the subject of this ordinance, be, and the same are hereby, repealed, and declared null and void.

Done by the United States, in Congress assembled, the 13th day of July, in the year of our Lord 1787, and of their sovereignty and independence the twelfth."

'Journals of Congress (ed. 1823), IV., PP. 757 54.

Ordinance for the Regulation and
Management of Indian Asfairs
August 7, 1786

(Journal of Congress (1786), pp. 175-78) Section IX of the Articles of Confederation provided that Congress "shall have the sole and exclusive right of ... regulating the trade and managing all affairs with the Indians, nol members of any of the states, provided that the legislative right of any state within its own limits be not infringed or violated." In 1786 Congress sought to establish this control through the Ordinance for the Regulation of Indian Affairs. Two Indian districts were rainblished using the former colonial superintendencies as the models-the southern, which comprised the area south of the Ohio River, and the northern, which included all areas north of the Ohio and urst of the Tucson. Bach of the Iwo neu' superintendents, who were lo repori 10 and "ohry all instructions" from the Secretary of War, had the pou're lo grant licenses to trade with the Indians. Bcforc a Trading license u'as issuell though. "curry person lhad 10) produce from the supreme executive of any Holna certificate under the scal of the slate, that he is of good character, and suitably qualified... for that employment."

Prrhaps the best assessment of the effectiveness of the Ordinance of 1786 war urillen on December 27, 1821, by Thomas L. Nick'enncy. Superinten. done of the Indian Tradr, 10 llenry Johnson, Chairman of Wie Senate Commilles on Indian Affairs. The question of how best to regulate Indian. while grlutions u'es again bring debaled in Congress. Nick'ennrynolod that Thir "system of a privalr intercourse the 1786 Ordinance and later regula. 11on has been trire; ils pror'isions, though apparently so well contrived to severnther Indians from the fire of avarice, and proceed them from its fangs, promenal useless, and in was abandoneil." Despite allampes to regulace those authorized to trade with the Indians, Mck'ennry estimated that "it would be an affectation of respect for the calling to doubl that lirer.fourths, al Trast," of those who received licenses were "unprincipled." As a resull, the Indians u'rre "subirlo to all the sufferings which avarice could inflict," with a consequent shoulding of much blood and loss of many lii'rs. Indeerd, Mikronry ultribuired most of the Indian wars 10 "The shameful practices of fraul" characteristic of Indian while relations under Her trading regula lions. Armillcally ill,kirnnry' urus biasoil in furor of forderal control of the Indian Trade, but his arguments against private Trade under a licensesystem are compelling

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lucen thcir citizens and the several nations of Indians, in amily with theni: and whereas the United States in congress assembled, under the ninth of the articles of confederation and perpetual union, have the sole and exclusive right and power of regulating the trade, and managing all affairs with the Indians, not members of any of the states; provided, that the legislative right of any state, within its own limits, be not infringed or violated:

Be it ordained by the United States in Congress assembled. That from and after the passing of this ordinance, the Indian department be divided into two districts, viz: The southern, which shall comprehend within its limiis all the nations in the territory of the United States, who reside southward of the river Ohio; and the northern, which shall comprehend all The other Indian nations within the said ierritory, and westward of Iludson river: provided, that all councils, ircalies, communications, and official Transactions, between the superintendent hercalier mentioned for the northern district, and the Indian nations, be held, iransacted, and done, al The outpost occupied by the troops of the United States, in the said districi. That a superintendent be appointed for cach of the said districis, who shall continue in ollice for two years, unless sooner renoved by congress, and shall reside within, or as near the district lui which he shall be ww appoint. ed, as may be convenient for the management of its concerns. The said superintendents shall allend to the execution of such regulations as con. gress shall, from time to time, establish respecting Indian affairs. The superintendent for the norihern district shall have authority to appwini iwo) deputies, to reside in such places as shall best facilitate the regulations of The Indian trade, and to remove them for misbehaviour. There shall be communications of all maliers relative to the business or the Indian de partment, kept up between the said superintendents, who shall regularly correspond with the secretary of war, through whom all communications respecting the Indian depariment shall be made in congress; and the superintendents are hereby direciod to obey all instructions which they shall, from time to time, receive from the said secretary of war. And whenever they shall have reason to suspect any tribe or tribes of Indians of hostile inientions, they shall communicate the same in the cxccutive of the state or states whose icrritories are subject to the effect of such hostilities. All stores, 'provisions or other property, which cor gress may think necessary for presents to the Indians, shall be in the custody and under the core of the said superintendents, who shall render an annual account of the expenditures of the same to the board orireasury.

And bx it further oncluineel. That none bur citizens of the United States shall lx sullored to reside' among the Indian nations, ou be allowed to trade will any nation of Indians within the ICILION of the United Sille's. That 10 prison, citizen or other, under the prender ol livelunderd dollars, shall resiste ilmnong or 11.10e will ins Indon, on Indian Mollion. Wilhin the

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produce, from the suprenie executive of any state, a certificate, under the seal of the scale, that he is of good character, and suitably qualified and provided for that employment; for which license he shall pay the sum of fifty dollars to the said superintendeni, for the use of the United States. That no license to trade with the Indians shall be in force for a longer term than one year, nor shall permits or passports be granted to any other persons than citizens of the United States, 10 travel through the Indian nations, without their having previously made their business known to the superintendent of the district, and received his special approbation. That previous to any person or persons obtaining a license to trade as aforesaid, he or they shall give bond, in three thousand dollars, to the superintendent of the district, lor the use of die Uniicd States, for his or their strict adherence 10, and observance of such rules and regulations as congress may, from time to lime, establish for the government of the Indian trade. All sunis to be received by the said superintendenis, either for licenses or fincs, shall be annually accounted for by them, with the board of treasury.

And be ir suriher ordained. That the said superintendenis, and the deputies, shall not be engaged either directly or indirectly, in trade with the Indians, on pain of forfciting their ollices: and each of the superintendents shall take the following oath, previous to his cnicring on the duties of his appointment: “I, A B. do swear, that I will u'ell and faithfully serie The United Slates in the office of superintendent of Indian affairs, for the - district; that I will carefully attend to all such orders and instrurlions as I shall from lime in lime, receive from the United Slales in Congress assembled, or the secretary of u'ar; That I will not be concerned, rither directly or indirectly, in trade with the Indians, and that in all things belonging to iny said office, during my continuance therein, I will faithfully, justly, and truly, according in the best of my skill and judgment, do equal and impartial justice, withoul fraud, favor, or affection." And the 511px'rinicnden for the northern districe shall administer in his depuries the following oath, before they proxeed on the duties of their office: “I, A surrat, that I will well and faithfully serve the United States, in the office of depuly'superintendent of Indian affairs, in the northern district; That I will carefully attend to all such orders and instructions as I shall, from lime in lime, recriwr from the United States in Congress assembled, the secretary of L'or, or the superintendent of the district aforesaill, and that in all things belonging to my said office, during my continuance therein, I will failhful ly, justly, and truly, arcuriling to the best of my skill and judgmonil, do aqualand impartial justice, willioul frawl. foror, or allerlion." And superintendents, and depull! superintendenis, shall each of them give bond will surell in the World of Treasure; in crust for the United States: the Superintendenis, cach, in the sum of sin thousand dollars, ind ihe depuilu S1qweinilendenis, carlo. in llor semme oliver I loons: collins, for the livibilul

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