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dago, their enemies would be apt to designate their foes by the name of the particular nation, whose warriors reached them.

A portion of the Wyandots, situate near Detroit, (having been permitted, probably, to return,) were claimed by the Iroquois as their cousins. Mr. Jefferson speaks of a tribe of Mingoes, on the Sciota, having eighty warriors. The former, probably, were confederates, or in close alliance with the Six Nations ; subservient, but politically treated as if not subjugated; too remote to be admitted to an equality and free participation of power, at the Council Fire, at Onondago ; and yet trusted, and used to extend and perpetuate the power of the confederacy in the west, while the Mingoes mentioned, were the more immediate agents sent out by the Iroquois, to the waters of the Ohio, as Roman legions, under her pro-consuls, were marched to Egypt or Gaul.

“In war concerns,” says Heckewelder, speaking of the Iroquois, “ they assumed an authority over many other nations, so that they only had to dictate, and others to obey. Not only those inhabiting Pennsylvania, but those dwelling within the limits of other provinces, and the adjacent country, together with the Western or Lake Indians, were called upon by the Six Nations to join the conflict, and such among them as were averse to war, were threatened with destruction if they did not join them."

Growing jealousy of the English, who were rapidly peopling the ocean-shore; increasing attachment to the French, whose less haughty, but more attractive manners, as well as their advancing power on the north, may have been one motive with the confederacy to concentrate the residence of their chiefs, and to fix on a more northern location, nearer to their preferred allies. The position they now assumed, it must be confessed, if less attractive in beauty, was not less fitted for the seat of extended empire, embracing, particularly, the upper branches of the great rivers, the Mohawk, the Delaware and the Susquehanna, and the lesser lakes. They had settlements at Aughquago, Owego, Tioga and Chenango. The banks of the Cayuga and Seneca lakes were spotted with their villages.* Though still in the acme of power and pride of dominion, the hour of inevitable decline was approaching with the approach of the arts and arms of the white man-whether French or English.

The Leni-Lenape, or Delaware Indians, had long before been sub

frons

* A powerful branch of the Seneca nation, the most numerous, it is believed, of the con. federacy, had a location, in 1724, near lake Ontario.

jugated by the Iroquois. “We have made you women ; we have placed petticoats on you," was the uniformly insulting language of the victors. Cowering with fear under the hand of their oppressors, yet possessing an Indian's pride, his passions and love of independence, the numerous and wide spread tribes of the Delawares are supposed to have given the white men a less jealous reception thau their masters, hoping to find in their increasing power, protection, if not the means of revenge. Hence, the Delawares lingered in the neighborhood of the whites—sought their society-opened their ears more readily to the instruction of missionaries, than those red men who were engaged in wars, intent on conquest and fired by ambition. These considerations are deemed important as affording a key to what, otherwise, would be perplexing difficulties.

A few further facts, showing the extent and spirit of the power exercised, and authority claimed, by the Six Nations, demand notice. The quotation from Mr. Jefferson, showing the incessant and harassing attacks of the Six Nations, on the Indians of Virginia, occupies a preceding page.

Mr. Heckewelder, in his narrative, says, “ The Six Nations, under a pretence that they had once conquered the Delawares, asserted that thereby the whole country had become theirs, and, therefore, assumed the power of dictating who should, and who should not be permitted to dwell therein."

Again :-“ The intention was of settling certain Delawares at Wyoming; but they objected, on the ground that this place lay in the road of the warriors going to and coming from the Catawbas."

Catawbas, a river then peopled by a tribe of Indians, in South Carolina, full a thousand miles, by any accessible route, from the Council Fire of the Iroquois ! This single fact is worth dwelling on a moment, as at once illustrative of the extent of dominion claimed, as also the character of that wonderful people. A band of warriors, armed, taking in a leathern bag a preparation of Indian corn, parched, and pounded with maple sugar, (called by the Mohegans Yokeag,) set out on a war path, to strike an enemy, and take a scalp, a thousand miles distant. Courage, fortitude, ambition ; the lofty aspirations of Alexander or Napoleon were here. Nor were these all; for the geography of an extensive country must have been understood; the position and power of all the neighboring nations, comprehended by them. Books they knew not, but ignorant, it were false to deem them. It is clear, an enemy would not be sought so far, if the nearer tribes had not been previously subjugated.

Mr. H. adds another objection of the emigrating Delawares, namely, that Wyoming “ abounded with Indians whom they mistrusted.” So that the valley was then numerously peopled.

The Iroquois, it is well known, in the old French war, took part with that nation against the English. Though the intelligent Moravian Missionaries passed freely through their country, yet such was their cautious concealment that says Heckewelder, “they kept their designs a profound secret, and it was not until those Indians made a sally, and murdered fourteen white people within five miles of Shamokin, where the Brethren had a small mission, that they were aware of danger.” He adds :-" It became evident that a cruel Indian war would be the result of the influence the French had acquired among the Indians; and especially those of the Six Nations, who long since on all occasions, and particularly in war concerns, assumed an authority over many other nations, so that they only had to dictate, and others to obey."

This reluctant admission, from the friend and patron of the Delawares, shows that the Six Nations were indeed conquerors, and over a vast territory supreme.

When peace came, Mr. Heckewelder says:—" And the Iroquois, the Six Nations being reconciled, they caused the other nations to lay down the hatchet.” 1764.

By whatever name the confederacy should be styled : a Republic, an Empire, or an Oligarchy, we behold these United people, with the Great Head' or Council at Onondago, clothed with dominion, and enthroned in power. Certainly from the Lakes to the Ocean, they were as absolute as a nation could be without forts, or standing armies. With the left hand they lighted up consuming fires on the St. Lawrence, even in the strong holds of the warlike French; hunted their broken enemies two thousand miles into desolate regions beyond lake Superior, brandished the tomahawk over trembling vassals eastwardly to the Merrimack, while with the right they smote the Catawbas on the southern coast of Carolina, and brought home scalps as trophies from the remote Cherokees, on the distant banks of the Mississippi.

LETTER III.

Union, pride and policy of the Confederate Nations–Subjugated tribes, removed to Wyo

ming-Grand Council in Philadelphia--Canassatego—Count Zinzendorf visits Wyoming -Remarkable incident-Moravians-Mission from Wyoming to Gnadenhutten.

HAVING presented a general view of the Six Nations, we now proceed to speak more particularly of them as connected with the Delaware, Shawanese, and other Indians, the principal inhabitants, not only of Wyoming, but of Pennsylvania.

So many years, perhaps ages, had elapsed since their independence was lost, that time and misfortune had obliterated the record of their greatness, or their fall. Several centuries previous to 1600, had probably seen them in their degraded state. Formerly they claimed to have been powerful in numbers, valiant warriors, and great conquerors; possibly not an idle boast, but every fact in their history, after their acquaintance with the Europeans, shows at once their subserviency and terror, when they heard the voice of their imperious masters.

On the appearance of the English, the expansion of their settlements, and the development of their power, hope seems to have entered the minds of the Lenape, that from the new people they might derive protection, or what would be dearer still, to an Indian heart, the means of revenge.--Hence their welcome to the whites,-hence their lingering around the new settlements,-hence their reluctance to retire when ordered, into the interior.

The 'Christian Library,' detailing the Moravian Missions in North America, says, [1750] speaking of the Delawares,—“They had not only a kind of tax imposed upon them, to show their dependence upon the Iroquois; but the following very singular message was sent them :- The Great Head, that is, the Council in Onondago, speak the truth, and lie not they rejoice that some of the believing

Indians had removed to Wayomick; but now they lift up the remaining Mohickans and Delawares, and set them down in Wayomick, for there a fire is kindled for them, and there they may plant and think on God: but if they will not hear, the Great Head will come and clean their ears with a red-hot iron.” To this lordly threat we shall again recur.

The Historian adds—" It was soon discovered, that this proposal did not originate in the Great Council at Onondago, but with the Oneida tribe, and the warlike Mohicans and Delawares." Let the reader examine all the authorities, and he will be satisfied—that neither of the Six Nations took any important step, without consultation and the consent of the Great Head, or Council, at Onondago.

Perfect union—and harmonious Councils were the foundation of their power; as secrecy in regard to their intentions, and vigour in carrying them into effect, were characteristic of their policy. By leave obtained, the Moravian Missionaries passed freely through the settlements of the Six Nations, associating unreservedly with chiefs and people, immediately preceding hostilities that commenced the French war; yet not a word escaped from any lip-not a whisper came to the ear of any one of them, not a suspicion even was awakened in the minds of those intelligent, quick discerning white men.

Similar to our own Federal Government, the Six Nations, like the several states, attended each to whatever strictly related to its own local concerns; but in every matter affecting war, peace, their external relations, or general interests, the Great Head, or united chiefs, assembled at the Council fire, at Onondago, was supreme. The government also possessed the most marked characteristics of the feudal system. Lands, for residence, or hunting grounds, were apportioned out by the chief power-taxes and tribute were collected, and military service demanded. Hence the warlike Mohicans, Delawares, Shawanese, and others spoken of, it is evident, were the soldiers of the Iroquois, bound to implicit obedience. If at any time they seemed to act independently, it was to effect some sinister political purpose of their profound and most sagacious masters. A Shawanese,-a tributary-a dependent, was sent upon the arrogant and ungracious errand to the Christian Indians near Bethlehem. Those to whom it was delivered, comprehended it well, for general consternation spread through Gnadenhutten.” A Shawanese carried the message. It might become politic, on the part of the Iroquois, to disavow it.

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