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the King's officers, we would not join them. Now therefore attend, and apply your ears closely. We have fully considered this matter. The resolutions of the Six Nations are not to be broken or altered. When they resolve, the matter is fixed. This then is the determination of the Six Nations, not to take any part, but as it is a family affair, to sit still and see you fight it out. We beg you will receive this as infallible, it being our full resolution; for we bear as much affection for the King of England's subjects on the other side the water, as we do for you, born upon this island. One thing more we request, which is, that you represent this in a true light to the delegates from all the Colonies, and not vary, and that you observe the same regard for truth when you write to the King about those matters; for we have ears, and shall hear, if you represent any thing in a wrong point of light. We likewise desire you would inform our brothers at Boston of our determination.
It is a long time since we came to this resolution. It is the result of mature deliberation. It was our declaration to Col. Johnson. We told him we should take no part in the quarrel, and hoped neither side would desire it. Whoever applies first, we shall think in the wrong. The resolutions of the Six Nations are not to be broken. Of the truth of this you have a late instance. You know what the Shawanese have lately been engaged in. They applied to us for assistance, but we refused them. Our love for you has induced us not to meddle. If we loved you less, we should have been less resolute.
You likewise informed, us, that when you perceived this island began to tremble, and black clouds to arise beyond the great water, you kindled up a great fire at Philadelphia, a fire which shone high and clear to your utmost settlements; that you sat round that fire, deliberating what measures to pursue for the common good; that while sitting round it, you recollected an ancient covenant made between your fathers and ours when they first crossed the great water and settled here, which covenant they first likened to a chain of iron. But when they considered that iron would rust, they made a silver chain, which they were always to rub and keep bright and clean of spots. This they made so strong, that an evil
spirit could not break it. This friendship chain you have now renewed. This covenant is to continue to future generations. We are glad you have thought proper to renew this covenant, and the whole Six Nations now thank you. This covenant belt you desire us to deposit at our central council-house, that future generations may call to mind the covenant now made between us. You may depend we shall send and inform all our neighboring council-fires of the matters now transacted. We close with the whole Six Nations repeating their thanks that you have renewed the covenant made between their forefathers and yours.
As you had renewed the ancient covenant, you thought proper to open the path, and have a free communication with this place. As the fire had for some time been put out, the path had got stopped up. You removed all obstructions out of the great roads and paths, all stones and briars, so that if any of us choose to travel the road, we should neither meet with any obstruction, or hurt ourselves. Brothers, we thank you for opening the road. You likewise informed us you were determined to drive away, destroy and kill all who appeared in arms against the peace of the Twelve United Colonies. Brothers, attend. We beg of you to take care of what you do. You have just now made a good path; do not so soon defile it with blood. There are many round us, Caghnawagas, who are friends to the King. Our path of peace reaches quite there. We beg all that distance may not be defiled with blood. As for your quarrels to the eastward, along the seacoasts, do as you please. But it would hurt us to see those brought up in our own bosoms ill used. In particular, we would mention the son of Sir William Johnson. He is born among us, and is of Dutch extraction by his mothHe minds his own affairs, and does not intermeddle in public disputes. We would likewise mention our father the minister who resides among the Mohawks, and was sent them by the King. He does not meddle in civil affairs, but instructs them in the way to heaven. He absolutely refuses to attend to any political matters, and says they do not belong to him. They beg he may continue in peace among them. The Mohawks are frequently alarmed with reports that their minister is to be torn away from them. It would occasion great disturbance, was he to be taken away. The King sent
him to them, and they would look upon it as taking away one of their own body. Therefore they again request that he may continue to live in peace among them.
After having informed us of the situation of affairs, and having finished your business, you advised us to shut our ears against false reports, and that we should not attend to flying stories, but to what wise and good men should say; for which reason you had kindled up a council-fire at this place, that we might always converse together, and know the truth of things. Brothers of the Six Nations say, "Let it be so; it shall be as you desire." They thank you for this advice, and desire you would use the same precautions; that you would shut your ears to flying stories, but keep your eye upon the chief council, such as you see now convened. The Six Nations desire you would always inform them fully of what respects them. We have for this purpose opened our ears and purified our minds, that we may always hear and receive what you have to say with good and clean minds; and whenever we receive any important intelligence, we shall always bring it to this council-fire.
You delivered us this pipe; on one side the tree of peace, on the other a council-fire; we Indians sitting on one side of the fire, and the representatives of the Twelve United Colonies upon the other. You have desired that this pipe may be left at our central council-house, and that the tree of peace may be planted, and that the branches may be so high as to be visible to all our allies. Brothers, we thank you, and shall take care to deposit this where you desire, and when we meet to deliberate upon business, shall always use this as our council-pipe.
In the course of your speech you observed, we of the Six Nations were a wise people, and saw a great way before us; and you asked asked us, if you upon this island were conquered, what would become of the Indians. You say you are uncertain of holding your possessions, and that you do not know who may enjoy the product of your labor. Now therefore, brothers, attend; you particularly, our brothers of Albany; we address ourselves particularly to you. Our brothers of Albany have taken two pieces of land from us, without any
reward, not so much as a single pipe. We therefore desire you will restore them, and put us into peaceable possession again. If you refuse to do this, we shall look upon the prospect to be bad; for if you conquer, you will take us by the arm, and pull us all off. Now therefore, as the Twelve United Colonies have renewed this covenant of peace, we beg that there may be no obstruction upon your part, but that you would restore our lands to us; for which, as we said before, you never paid us even a single pipe.
You have now finished your business, and we have made short replies. You have kindled up a council-fire of peace, and have planted a tree of peace, according to ancient custom. We find that you have omitted one thing, which is this. According to our ancient custom, whenever a council-fire was kindled up, and a tree of peace planted, there was some person appointed to watch it. Now as there is no person appointed to watch this tree, we of the Six Nations take it upon us to appoint one. Let it be the descendant of our ancient friend, Quedar. He has to consider whether he will take the charge of it, and communicate to us whatever may respect it. He that watches this council-fire, is to be provided with a wing, that he may brush off all insects that come near it, and keep it clear. That is the custom at our central council-house. We have one appointed for that purpose.
As you have this day renewed the ancient covenant of friendship, and have again brightened the ancient chain, renew likewise another ancient custom respecting the regulation of trade. Let us have a trade at this place, and likewise at Schenectady, as it was in former times, when we had hold of the old covenant. For then, brothers, if our people came down with only a few musquash skins, we went home with glad hearts. Brothers, let it be so again. Let the Twelve United Colonies take this into consideration.
A Belt of ten rows of Wampum.
Tiahogwando, an Oneida sachem, then spoke.
This is all the Six Nations have to say at present. They would just mention one thing more before they break up.
The Six Nations look upon this as a very good time to speak their minds, as here are the representatives of the Twelve United Colonies. The dispute between the people of New England and Penn seems to us to become a serious affair, and therefore the Six Nations take upon them to speak their minds freely, as they address the inhabitants of the whole continent. Many years ago, at a council held in Pennsylvania, when Cannassateego, that has been before mentioned, was present, Penn desired the Six Nations would sell him that piece of land known by the name of Scanandanani or Susquehanna. The Indians of the Six Nations refused to sell it, saying the great God would not permit them. Therefore they made him a present of that land, known by the name of Scanandanani. Penn received it, and made them valuable presents. After this, Col. Lydius, a gentleman employed by the people of Boston, treated with some of the Indians to get that land from them. But he never kindled up a council-fire upon the occasion. He spoke to them whenever he met them; never with more than ten. From these he pretended to make a purchase of that tract. Gov. Penn also, at the great treaty at Fort Stanwix, in the year 1768, desired that the land might be his, and distributed among the Six Nations, Shawanese and Caghnawagas, ten thousand dollars, for which they gave him a writing. This is an affair with which all the Six Nations are acquainted, and any one would lie who said they knew nothing about it. We have taken an opportunity to speak of this matter now, as the mind of the whole continent is now here.
[Here appears to be some omission in the Journal.]
Brothers of the Six Nations, attend.
We yesterday heard with pleasure your answer to the Twelve United Colonies, and we return thanks to the great Governor of the universe, that he has inclined your hearts to approve and accept the brotherly love offered to you by the Twelve United Colonies. It makes us happy to hear so wise and brave a people, as our brothers of the Six Nations are, publicly declare their unalterable resolution to maintain and support peace and friendship with the Twelve United Colonies. This, brothers, you have said, and we sincerely believe you. Brothers, we requested of you Indians of the Six Na