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evil counsellors. They have persuaded him to send an army of soldiers and many ships of war, to rob and destroy us. They have shut up many of our harbors, seized and taken into possession many of our vessels. The soldiers^ ha^e struck the blow, killed some of our people. The blood now runs of the King's American children. They have also burned our houses and towns, and taken much of our goods.
A Black Belt. Brothers, We are now necessitated to rise, and forced to fight, or give up our civil constitution, run away, and leave our farms and houses behind us. This must not be. Since the King's wicked counsellors will not open their ears, and consider our just complaints, and the cause of our weeping, and have given the blow, we are determined to drive away the King's soldiers, and to kill and destroy all those wicked men we find in arms against the peace of the Twelve United Colonies upon this island.
We think our cause is just; therefore hope God will be on our side. We do not take up the hatchet and struggle for honor or conquest, but to maintain our civil constitution and religious privileges; the very same for which our forefathers left their native land and came into this country.
A Black Belt. Brothers and friends, We desire you will hear and receive what we have now told you, and that you will open a good ear and listen to what we are going to say. This is a family quarrel between us and Old England. You Indians are not concerned in it. We don't wish you to take up the hatchet against the King's troops. We desire you to remain at home, and not join either side, but keep the hatchet buried deep. In the name and behalf of all our people, we ask and desire you to love peace and maintain it, and to love and sympathize with us in our troubles; that the path may be kept open with all our people and yours, to pass and repass without molestation. Brothers, We live upon the same ground with you. The same island is our common birth-place. We desire to sit down under the same tree of peace with you. Let us water its roots, and cherish its growth, till the large leaves and flourishing branches shall extend to the setting sun, and reach the skies.
Brothers, observe well. What is it we have asked of you? Nothing but peace, notwithstanding our present disturbed situation ; and if application should be made to you by any of the King's unwise and wicked ministers to join on their side, we only advise you to deliberate with great caution, and in your wisdom look forward to the consequences of a compliance. For if the King's troops take away our property, and destroy us, who are of the same blood with themselves, what can you, who are Indians, expect from them afterwards? A White Belt. Brothers of the Six Nations, When we perceived this island began to shake and tremble along the eastern shore, and the sun darkened by a black cloud which arose from beyond the great water, we kindled up a great council-fire at Philadelphia; and we sat around it until it burnt clear, and so high that it illuminated this whole island. We renewed our hold of the old covenant chain, which united and strengthened our ancestors, and which was near slipping out of our hands, before we had kindled this great council-fire at Philadelphia. We have now taken fast hold, nor will we let it go until a mighty struggle, even unto death.
Brothers, We are now Twelve Colonies, united as one man. We have but one heart and one hand. Brothers, this is our Union Belt. By this belt we, the Twelve United Colonies, renew the old covenant chain by which our forefathers, in their great wisdom, thought proper to bind us and you, our brothers of the Six Nations, together, when they first landed at this place; and if any of the links of this great chain should have received any rust, we now brighten it, and make it shine like silver. As God has put it into our hearts to love the Six Nations and their allies, we now make the chain of friendship so strong, that nothing but an evil spirit can or will attempt to break it. But we hope, through the favor and mercy of the good Spirit, that it will remain strong and bright while the sun shines and the water runs.
Delivered the Union Belt.
Brothers, It is necessary in order for the preservation of friendship between us and our brothers of the Six Nations and their allies, that a free and mutual intercourse be kept up betwixt us. Therefore the Twelve United Colonies, by this belt, remove every difficulty that may lay in the great road that runs through the middle of our country; and we will also clear up and open all the small roads that lead into the great one. We will take out every thorn, briar and stone, so that when any of our brothers of the Six Nations or their allies have an inclination to see and talk with any of their brethren of the Twelve United Colonies, they may pass safely, without being scratched or bruised. Brothers, the road is now open for our brethren of the Six Nations and their allies, and they may now pass and repass as safely and freely as the people of the Twelve United Colonies themselves; and we are further determined, by the assistance of God, to keep our roads open and free for the Six Nations and their allies, as long as this earth remains. Path Belt.
We have said we wish you Indians may continue in peace with one another, and with us, the white people. Let us both be cautious in our behavior towards each other at this critical state of affairs. This island now trembles; the wind whistles from almost every quarter. Let us fortify our minds, and shut our ears against false rumors. Let us be cautious what we receive for truth, unless spoken by wise and good men. If any thing disagreeable should ever fall out between us, the Twelve United Colonies, and you, the Six Nations, to wound our peace, let us immediately seek measures for healing the breach. From the present situation of affairs we judge it wise and expedient to kindle up the council-fire at Albany, where we may hear each other's voices and disclose our minds more fully to one another.
The Pipe of Peace and Six Small Strings. Brothers,
You now know our disposition towards you, the Six Nations and their allies. Therefore we say, Brothers, take care, hold fast to your covenant chain. We depend on you to send and acquaint your allies to the northward, the Seven Tribes on the river St. Lawrence, that you have had this talk with us at our council-fire at Albany. Brothers,
Let this our good talk remain at Onondago, your central council-house, that you may hand down to the latest posterity these testimonials of the brotherly sentiments of the Twelve United Colonies towards their brethren of the Six Nations and their allies.
To which Kanaghquaesa replied.
We have sat round and smoked our pipes at this our ancient place of kindling up our council-fires. We have heard all you have said, and have heard nothing but what is pleasant and good. As you have communicated matters of great importance to us, we will sit down to-morrow and deliberate coolly upon them; and the day following will give you answers to every thing you have laid before us.
At a treaty continued with the Indians of the Six Nations at Albany, on Thursday, the 31st day of August, 1775. Present,
Col. Francis, Col. Wolcott, Mr. Douw, Commissioners; Mr. Duane of New York.
The Indians being informed that the Commissioners were ready to hear them, Abraham, a Mohawk sachem, spoke as follows.
Brothers, great men deputed by the Twelve United Colonies, attend.
We are this day called to meet you in council, in order to reply to what you have said to us. We hope we need not recapitulate the whole of your discourse. We shall only touch upon each head. At our last conference in this house, we promised to return you our answer the day but one following. We did not do it, and we mean to make you an apology. We hope you have taken no offence. We were not prepared by that time, and that was our reason. Brothers, you informed us that there was a great Council of sixtyfive members convened at Philadelphia, and that you were appointed by them to deliver a talk to the Six Nations. It seems you, our brothers, having a desire to rekindle a councilfire, took to your assistance the descendants of Quedar, and have kindled up a council-fire that shall never be extinguished. To which the Six Nations reply: This you have done by order of the great Council at Philadelphia. We are glad to hear the news. It rejoices our hearts, and it gives exceeding joy through all the Six Nations.
As you desired your belts might not be returned, but be deposited at our central council-house, we shall only make use of them to refresh our memories and speak upon them as we go on with our answer. Brothers, we shall not recite every particular, as we before mentioned. You observed, when these commotions first began, a council of sixty-five members convened together at Philadelphia, and you put us in mind of what Cannassateego formerly said at Lancaster respecting the necessity of a union among you. An old sachem, a brother of Cannassateego, is here present, and remembers the words of his brother. You illustrated the necessity and use of a union by one and twelve arrows. You said your grandfathers had inculcated this doctrine into their children. You said that as the tree of peace was formerly planted at this place, you desired that the Six Nations might come down, and sit under it, and water its roots, till the branches should flourish and reach to heaven. This the Six Nations say shall be done. Brothers, we need only remind you of a few of the things you said to us, as you have them all written down. You informed us that by an ancient covenant with the King of England, you were to enjoy the same privileges with the people on the other side the great water; that for a long time you did enjoy the same privileges, by which means you and your brethren over the water both became a great people; that lately, by advice of evil counsellors, you are much oppressed, and had heavier packs put upon you than you could bear; that you have frequently applied to be eased of your burthen, but could obtain no redress; that finding this the case, you had thrown off your packs. The Six Nations thank you for acquainting them with your grievances and methods taken to obtain redress. You likewise informed them of what resolutions you had formed in consequence of these matters. Brothers,
After stating your grievances, and telling us you had not been able to obtain redress, you desired us to take no part, but bury the hatchet. You told us it was a family quarrel; therefore said, "You Indians, sit still, and mind nothing but peace." Our great man, Col. Johnson, did the same thing at Oswego; he desired us to sit still likewise. You likewise desired us that if application should be made to us by any of