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About this time they had got to fort Pitt. And we heard there was a great man, and a Frenchman coming, also from Philadelphia, in great fear, trying to make peace. Then we thanked God. The next express said that our head-men and those from Philadelphia were coming on the waters together, to have the great council fire lighted at Buffalo, and we that live here sent on the express, and gave great thanks to our Great Keeper.
Now that you and they have arrived here, and have showed your faces at our council fire in trouble and fear, we give great thanks again to the Great Spirit for keeping you and our chiefs from the trouble that befel others coming to this place. Now tell the man from Philadelphia to pity us children, for we are fearful. And we say to you, that will open your throats, that you may speak fair and clear to us without any hard thoughts, when you get to our great council fire of the full nations, that you may deliver any message you are sent upon, from the great chiefs at Philadelphia. Besides, now we open your ears to hear any thing which may be said by us, and hear the same in peace.
BROTHER: These are the few words we have to make known to you. And give thanks to God for our safe meeting this day together, our brothers and our chiefs. (This speech being ended, Thyogasy handed to me a belt of wampum of three strings, and then continued his discourse as follows:)
BROTHER: This is our custom, to make a small speech on seeing our friends, but Buffalo is the place where you must speak, and at that place matters must be talked over in peace and quietness, and of which tell all people to be careful. Now wipe the tears from your eyes, and make your throat clear, so that you may be understood.
The speech of Red Jacket before the Great Council at Buffalo, April
27th, as an introduction to the business of the day, addressing himself to me.
BROTHER: Listen! It is usual for us to speak; and to you we do it as to a brother that has been absent a long time. Now we all speak to you, and to our head warrior that left us last fall: and we thank the Great Spirit for his and your safe arrival here, as you are together, hand in hand, from Honandaganius, (General Washington) upon great business,
You have travelled long, with tears in your eyes, upon account of the bad roads, and bad season of the year. Besides the disturbances between the bad 'Indians, and our brothers, the white people, everything has been trying to prevent your coming, and to stop your business, and to lose the way.
Thus the big waters might have stopped your coming, and the wars might have stopped you, and sickness might have stopped you: for we cannot know what is to happen us until it comes upon us. So, therefore, we thank the Great Spirit who has preserved you from such dargers that might have hindered us from hearing of the good news which you and your head warrior have opened to us. But how could it be that any thing bad could have happened to you while you have such important business to transact, as we understand you have come on?
You must now wipe away those fears occasioned by all the great dangers you have come through. And now we set you upon a seat where you can sit up straight-on a seat where you are secure from the fears of your enemies; where you can look round and see all your friends and brothers in peace. Besides, you have come along, with your heart and your throat stopped up, to secure all that you had to say in your body. But now we open your heart with your brother's hands, and we run our fingers through to open your mouth, to speak clear, and not to be molested. Your ears also have been stopped by Honandaganius until you should see your brothers at this place, being spared by the Great Spirit to arrive safe.
Now open your ears to hear what your brothers may say after you have made your speech. This is, therefore, the compliment of the chiefs and head men of Buffalo creek, to you and our great warrior (O'Beel) and you may, each of you, go on safely with your business.
Monday, May 8th.—In full council. The speech of Fish Carrier, a chief of the Cayugas, and the right hand man of Butler and Brandt, as may appear from the following, addressed to me:
BROTHER: This day you have met again with your brothers in peace; a day provided by the Great Spirit for you and them to sit together, and talk over the business you have been sent to perform by General Washington, the Thirteen Fires, and for which you are to come to our council; and likewise, to hear us with regard to the people (the bad Indians) on the other side of your body, toward the setting sun.
Here you have made your business known, to all the chiefs and warriors, who met every day; and now they understand the same, because they have taken due notice. Therefore, you shall hear what we have determined upon by all of us, for we all had a hand in it or it would not be strong.
Now, BROTHER: We shall say more to what General Washington sent you for, and to tell you, that our head warrior (O’Beel) our nephew, has done things which we know nothing of; and it seems to us that he has requested that this business should go forward without our consent. Neither do we know you in this matter; and were we to undertake to help you, we do not know what might happen before we went far with you, as that might be the cause of our country being destroyed, or broken up by the mad people.
Now we tell you, as we told you before, that we have met on your business, and that the one-half is not for peace. So we look at the man that has been sent to the Shawanese (Brandt) and we have sent to see how matters go at their council fire. We must, therefore, see his face, for we can't determine until we know what they are about.
So we beg of you to grant our request; to keep your mind easy; for we who do this business, look on you, and hold ourselves to be slaves in making of peace. Now we all say, you must look for C. Brandt's coming, to hear the words that come from his mouth, for then we can say to you, what towns will be for peace; and this is all we have to say to you at this time.
Upon this I told the council, that, in the morning, I would give them my talk in answer to what had been said this day, and immediately return, with what they had spoke in their council, to the Great Chief that had sent me. Captain O’Beel then told them, in council, what would be the consequence to the Five Nations, and publicly declared to accompany me,
if no other chiefs would attempt it. For further particulars, I beg leave to refer to the continuation of my letter of the 4th of May.
Speech of Conyandoeta, an Onandago Chiej, Addressed to the
Council of the Six Nations, through which he explained the dangers which attended on him and his people, should they remain at Coneyat.
BROTHERS: There is a great deal of danger at this place, for we are told by the enemy, the Missesagoes, that we must come to their side, or else we wont live long. But, said I, we turned our face once, and you did not pay us the compliment to call us to council with you, or even to shake hands with us. Now, we turn our face to this council, and you must prepare a place for us when we come; for we mean to be true to the promise we make to you. (On the close of this speech, four strings of wampum were presented, a mixture of black and white.)
Speech of Bear's Oil, a Chief, to the same effect as the above, who,
with his people, are in danger of the Messasagoes. BROTHERS: Now hear me a little. I am a Messesago chief, belonging to the Six Nations. I, and my people, are in great danger, because I have been the entire instigation of saving the white settlers at Coneyat and Cassacago: for I told them of the danger they were in, as I heard the Red Indians say they were bound for that place, and that they intended to murder them. Moreover, that if I did not come away to them, I should die, for that was the only way to save my life; and that, should I attempt to go to the Six Nations, they would meet me on the way and kill me. For they say, if they meet with any of the Six Nations, they will strike them. But I have not listened to them. I have come to you, and you must have a place ready for me to sit down when I come with my people.
These matters, I take the liberty of communicating to your Excellency, in order to shew you, the Six Nations themselves profess, that they are not secure from the anger of the Indians who are unfriendly to the United States.
May 14th, 1791. Speech of the Farmer Brother, or the King. BROTHER: The last summer was the time we had our last talk with the Shawanese, and then we tried to make peace in their minds, but they would not listen to us. They named to us their great chief of the Shawanese, called the Little Hoope, who told them, that all the nations beyond them to the setting sun, being in number fortyeight large towns, were all under arms, and that Little Hoope said they would be at peace with the Long Knife. So that when peace was put in their heads, and that we had returned home, then the great fight was had between them and the Virginians, the Long Knife, and that made their determinations stronger for war than ever, because they had killed many of their people, and hurt their nations. And after this, we tried and told the Americans to be at peace and quietness. So we concluded to send some body again, to know what they were doing among the bad Indians, so that we might judge, and we consented to send a chief to them, with whom they were acquainted. And upon that determination, as we told you before, we sent Capt. Brandt, so that he might know how many people were bent for war, or how many nations were not so hard for war, so that we might judge whether it was worth while to try again to make peace. That is the reason why we asked you, the other day, to attend our council fire, until you should see his mouth yourself, when he should tell us all that was doing in that country. And that is the reason why we are afraid of our brother, for we know that they wont receive you in peace, for it is their determination as we hear. We tell you again, that one of the same mind with us is gone to speak to those people, and we want to hear him as much as General Washington does, and we pay all attention to what he has laid before us; and now our opinion is, we must go alone and try to make peace ourselves; and that is the reason we dont want you to go with us; for this is the outermost edge of the bad people's settlement; and were we to take you by the hand, and go together, we must instantly meet with a great loss, which would make war on both sides, and we should be killed. Now we will tell you the reason why they refuse to make peace, is, that General St. Clair struck the bad Indians, while they were thinking of making peace with the Americans; and this is the reason to try ourselves, to make them hear by our chief, that is gone before us; and that will be the time for General Washington to light his fires, when he knows they are determined for peace, and we, the Six Nations, are strong for it. Therefore, tell General Washington to hold back his warriors a little, and let his intention be strong for peace, and God will assist the Americans to make it up.