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Ottawas, Sacs, Pottawatomies and JXIiamis entered, together
with the Shawanese, Delawares and Wyandots, into prelim-
inary articles with General Wayne, January 24th, 1795. It
was agreed that all the sachems and war chiefs representing
the above nations should meet Wayne at Greenville on or
about June 15th, to consult and conclude such a peace as
would be for the interest and satisfaction of both parties.
In the meantime hostilities ceased, prisoners were exchanged
and the Indians were preparing to meet in June as agreed.
The first to arrive were a large number of Delawares, Otta-
was, Pottawatomies and Eel River Indians. On June 16th,
Wayne met these in general council for the first time.

Parkman, the historian, says :

"An Indian council, on solemn occasions, was alwavs op-
ened with preliminary forms, suflicientlv wearisome and te-


dious, but made indispensable by immemorial custom ; for
this people are as much bound by conventional usages as
most artificial children of civilization. The forms were var-
ied, to some extent, according to the imagination of the speak-
er; but in all essential respects they were closely similar,
throughout the tribes of the Algonquin and Iroquois lineage.

"An Indian orator was provided with a stock of metaphors,
which he always made use of for the expression of certain
ideas. Thus, to make war was to raise the hatchet; to make
peace was to take hold of the chain of friendship ; to deliber-
ate was to kindle the council fire ; to cover the bones of the
dead was to make reparation and gain forgiveness for the act
of killing them. A state of war and disaster was typified
by a black cloud ; a state of peace by bright sunshine, or by
an open path between two nations.

'"The orator seldom spoke without careful premeditation of
what he was about to say ; and his memory was refreshed by-
belts of wampum, which he delivered after every clause in his
harangue, as a pledge of the sincerity and truth of his words.
These belts were carefully preserved by the hearers, as a sub-
stitute for written records ; a use for which they were the bet-
ter adapted, as they were often in hieroglyphics expressing
the meaning they were designed to preserve. Thus, at a
treaty of peace, the principal belt often bore the figure of an
Indian and a white man holding a chain betwen them."

Accordingly, when addressing the council on June 16th,
Wayne first passed around the calumet, to be smoked by the
assembled chiefs, after which he said : "I have cleared the
ground of all brush and rubbish, and opened roads to the east,
to the west, to the north and to the south, that all nations
may come in safety and ease to meet me. The ground on
which the council house stands is unstained with blood and
is as pure as the heart of General Washington, the great chief
of America and of his great council^as pure as my heart,
which wishes for nothing so much as peace and brotherly
love. I have this day kindled the council fire of the United
States : we will now cover it up and keep it alive until the
remainder i.^f the dififerent tribes assemble, and form a full
meeting and representation. I now deliver to each tribe
present a string of white wampum to serve as record of the
friendship that is this day commenced between us."

Owing to the great distance of some of the tribes and the
difficulty of traveling, also to the interference of the British


agents, the Indians kept arriving in small bands from their
homes on the Maumee, the Wabash and the Great Lakes.
These were the chief men, the scions of many a proud and
noted tribe. Some had met in former treaties and had fought
the Americans on many a blood}' field ; many had helped to
rout the armies of Harmar and St. Clair, and all had been de-
feated by the troops of Mad Anthony. As they arrived they
were cordially received and expressed sentiments of peace.
On the 15th of July, Wayne addressed the council at length,
explaining his powers and urging the treaty of Fort Har-
mar as a basis for lasting peace. Time was given for de-
liberation, and discussion followed on the 18th, relative to the
merits and force of this treaty, of which some of the chiefs
pleaded ignorance.

On the 20th Wayne read to the assembled warriors the
offer of peace sent to them just before the battle on the Mau-
mee. He also read and explained the treaty of Fort Har-
mar and pointed out a number of chiefs who were present
and had signed both that and the previous treaty at Fort Mc-
intosh, and asked them to consider seriously what he had
said and make known their thoughts at their next meeting.
On the 21st the discussion was continued, several prominent
warriors took part, and were followed by Me-she-kun-no-quo,
or Little Turtle, the great chief of the JMiamis, who claimed
ignorance of the lands ceded along the Wabash and expressed
surprise that these lands had been ceded by the British to the
Americans when the former were beaten by and made peace
with the latter. On Wednesday, the 22d, this tall and crafty
warrior made a shrewd and eloquent address before the great
council, setting forth in a touching, forceful and statesman-
like manner the claims of his offended nation. Let us im-
agine this tall and swarthy chieftain stepping majestically to
the center of the assembled council. Thoughts of the past
power and prestige of his waning nation and the early vic-
tories over the advancing Americans throng his brain as he
casts his eagle eyes toward the blazing July sun and then
turns impressively toward his large and picturesque audience.
On the one side he beholds the somber, but sympathetic,
faces of a hundred bronzed warriors who have figured in ev-
ery raid and engagement of the tribes throughout the border
wars: on the other side he sees the Great Chief who defeated
his people on the Maumee, a young aide who will one day
lead the victorious Americans asfainst the combined British


and Indian foe and finally sit in Washington's chair, besides
a motley assembly of ofificers, interpreters and spies required
to properly conduct the important deliberation of the occa-

On this interesting occasion he arose with dignity and said ;
"General Wayne! I hope you will pay attention to what I
now say to you. I wish to inform you where my younger
brothers, the Miamis live, and also the Pottawatomies of
St. Joseph, together with the Wabash Indians. You have
pointed out to us the boundary line between the Indians and
the United States: but I now take the liberty to inform you
that that line cuts off from the Indians a large portion of coun-
try which has been enjoyed by my forefathers, time imme-
morial, without molestation or dispute. The prints of my
ancestor's houses are everywhere to be seen in this portion.
I was a little astonished at hearing you and my brothers, who
are now present, telling each other what business you had
transacted together, heretofore, at Muskingum, concerning
this country. It is well known that my forefather kindled
the first fire at Detroit ; from thence he extended his lines to
the headwaters of the Scioto ; from thence to its mouth ; from
thence down the Ohio to the mouth of the Wabash, and
from thence to Chicago, on Lake Michigan. At this place T
first saw my elder brothers, the Shawanese. I have now in-
formed you of the boundaries of the Miami nation, where the
Great Spirit placed my forefather a long time ago and charged
him not to sell or part with his lands, but to preserve them
for his posterity. This charge has been handed down to me.
I was much surprised to hear that my brothers differed so
much from me on this subject ; for their conduct would lead
me to suppose that the Great Spirit and their forefathers
had not given them the same charge that was given me. but
on the contrary, had directed them to sell their lands to an_v
white man who wore a hat, as soon as he should ask it of
them. X'ow, elder brother, your younger brothers, the
Miamis, have pointed out to you their country and also to
your brothers present. \\'hen I hear your proposals on this
subject, I will be ready to give an answer. I came with an
expectation of hearing you say good things, but I have not
yet heard what I expected.

"Brothers, the Indians! I expected, in this council that
our minds would have been made up. and we should speak


with one voice. I am sorry to observe that yuu are ratlier
unsettled and hasty in your conduct."

After the great chief of the Miamis had spoken, Tar-he, the
Wyandot, arose and said that the ground belonged to the
Great Spirit above, and that they had an equal right to it ;
that he always considered the treaty of Muskingum as found-
ed upon the fairest of principles, as being binding upon the
Indians and the United States alike ; and that peace was now
desired by all. During the following days, discussion con-
cerning the boundaries and terms were continued and on the
24th, General \\'ayne arose and spoke in part as follows :

"Brothers, the Miamis ! I have paid attention to what the
Little Turtle said, two days since, concerning the lands which
he claims. He said his father first kindled the fire at De-
troit and stretched his line from thence to the headwaters
of the Scioto ; thence down the same to the Ohio ; thence down
that river to the mouth of the Wabash, and from thence to
Chicago, on the southwest end of Lake Michigan, and ob-
served that his forefathers had enjoyed that country undis-
turbed from time immemorial.

"Brothers! These boundaries enclose a very large space
of country indeed ; they embrace, if I mistake not, all the
lands on which all the nations now present live, as well as
those which have been ceded to the L^nited States. The lands
which have been ceded have within these three days been ac-
knowledged by the Ottawas, Pottawatomies. Wyandots,
Delawares and Shawanese. The Little Turtle says the prints
of his forefathers' houses are everywhere to be seen within
these boundaries. Younger brother! It is true these prints
are to be observed, but at the same time we discover marks
of French possessions throughout this country established
long before we were born. These have since been in pos-
session of the British, who must, in their turn, relinquish
them to the United States, when they, the French and the
Indians, will be all as one people.

"I will point out to you a few places where I discover
strong traces of these establishments ; and first of all, I find
at Detroit, a very strong print, where the fire was first kind-
led by your forefathers ; next at Vincennes on the Wabash ;
again at Musquiton on the same river ; a little higher up on
that stream, they are to be seen at Ouiatenon. I discover
another strong trace at Chicago, another on the St. Joseph's
of Lake ^lichigan. I have seen quite distinctly the prints of


a French and of a British post at the Miami villages, and of
a British post at the foot of the rapids, now in their posses-
sion. Prints, very conspicuous, are on the Great !Miami,
which were possessed by the French forty-five years ago ;
another trace is very distinctly to be seen at Sandusky.

"It appears to me that if the Great Spirit, as you say,
charged your forefathers to preserve their lands entire for
their posterity, they have paid very little regard to the sacred
injunction, for I see they have parted with those lands to
}'our fathers, the French, and the English are now, or have
been, in possession of them all ; therefore, I think the charge
urged against the Ottawas, Chippewas and other Indians,
comes with bad grace indeed, from the very people who, per-
haps, set them the example. The English and French both
wore hats ; and yet your forefathers sold them, at various
times, portions of your lands. However, as I have already
observed, you shall now receive from the United States fur-
ther valuable compensation for the lands you have ceded to
them by former treaties.

"Younger brothers ! I will now inform you who it was
who gave us these lands in the first instance ; it was your
fathers, the British, who did not discover that care for your
interests which you ought to have experienced. This is the
treaty of peace, made between the United States of America
and Great Britain twelve years ago, at the end of a long and
bloody war, when the Frencli and Americans proved too
powerful for the British ; on these terms thev obtained peace."'
Here part of the treaty of 1783 was read.

"Here you perceive that all the country south of the Great
Lakes has been given up to America ; but the United States
never intended to take that advantage of you, which the Brit-
ish placed in their hands. They wish you to enjoy your just
rights, without interruption, and to promote your happiness.
The British stipulated to surrender to us all the posts on this
side of the boundary agreed on. I told you some time ago
treaties should ever be sacredly fulfilled by those who make
them ; but the British on their part did not find it convenient
to relinquish those posts as soon as they should have done,
but a precise period is now fixed for their delivery. I have
now in my hand a copy of a treaty, made eight months since,
between them and us, of which I will read you a little. (First
and second articles of Mr. Jay's treaty read.)

"By this solemn agreement they promise to retire from


Michilimackinac, Fort St. Clair, Detroit, Niagara and all other
places on this side of the Lakes in ten moons from this per-
iod, and leave the same to the full and quiet possession of
the States.

"Crothers! All nations present, now listen to me!

"Having now explained those matters to you and informed
j-ou of all things I judged necessary for your information,
we have nothing to do but to bury the hatchet, and draw a
veil over past misfortunes. As you have buried our dead,
with the concern of brothers, so I now collect the bones of
your slain warriors, put them into a deep pit which I have
dug, and cover them carefully over with this large belt, there
to remain undisturbed. I also dry the tears from your eyes,
and wipe the blood from your bodies, with this soft, white
linen. Xo bloody traces will ever lead to the graves of your
departed heroes ; with this I wipe all such away. 1 deliver
it to your uncle, the ^^'yand<Jt, who will send it around
amongst you. (A large belt with a white string attached. )

"1 now take the hatchet out of 3'our hands, and with a
strong arm throw it into the center of the great ocean, where
no mortal can ever find it ; and I now deliver to you the wide
and straight path to the Fifteen Fires, to be used by you and
your posterity, forever. So long as you continue to follow
this road, so long will you continue to be happy people. You
see it is straight and wide, and they will be blind indeed, who
deviate from it. I place it also in your uncle's hands for j-ou.
(A large road belt.)

"I will, the dav after tomorrow, show you the cessions
which you have made to the United .States, and point out to
you the lines which may for the future divide your lands from
theirs : and, as 3'ou will have tnmorrovi- to rest, I will order
you a double allowance of drink, because we have buried the
hatchet and performed every necessary ceremony to render
propitious our renovated friendship.

Discussion and explanation continued until the 3d of
August, various noted chiefs acting as sopkesmen for their
respective tribes. On that day the general read for the third
time the articles of the proposed new treaty, which was then
signed by some ninety chiefs and tribal representatives on
the part of the Indians, by General Wayne, several ofificers,
his aides-de-camp, interpreters, and guides on behalf of the
United States. A large number of belts and strings
of wamptim were passed bv the various tribes during


the deliberations ; mention being made of road belts,
mixed belts, a blue helt, a belt with nine white squares,
a large belt with men and a house designated upon it, a war
belt, numerous white and blue and white belts and strings of
wampum. Some of these belts probably contained a
thousand or more beads of wampum, and, as each bright
flinty bead is said to have represented a day's labor for these
primitive people, we readily conclude that they meant more
than a great sum of money might mean to the whites, and
were, indeed, a striking pledge of good will. The Indians re-
mained a few days at Fort Greenville ; speeches were deliv-
ered and the calumet of peace was fially passed to those who
had not yet smoked it. Thus was consummated a treaty of
far-reaching importance, concerning the effectiveness of
which King, the historian, testifies : "Never after that treaty,
to their honor be it remembered, did the Indian nations vio-
late the limits which it established. It was a grand tribute to
General Wayne that no chief or warrior who gave him the
hand at Greenville ever after lifted the hatchet against the
United States. There were malcontents on the Wabash and
Lake ^lichigan who took sides with Tecumseh and the
Prophet in the A\^ar of 1812, perhaps for good cause, but the
tribes and their chiefs sat still."

The tribes were represented as follows at the treaty: Dela-
wares. 381; Pottawatomies, 240; Wyandots, 180; Shawanese,
143; Miamis and Eel Rivers, 72>; Chippewas, 46; Ottawas,
45; Weas and Piankeshaws, 12; Kickapoos and Kaskaskias,
10; in all, 1,130.

The following chiefs and representatives signed the docu-
ment for the tribes :


Tar-he (or Crane).

William Sur (?)


Ha-re-en-}-ow (or Half King's Son).



Laye-tah: . ,

Sha-tey-ya-ron-yah (Leather Lips).




1 >






Pee-kee-tele-mund for Thomas Adams).
Kish-ke-pe-kund (or Captain Buffalo).
Ame-na-he-han (or Captain Crow).
Oue-shawk-sey (or George Washington).
Wey-win-quis (or Billy Siscomb).
Teta-boksh-ke (or Grand Glaize King).
Le-man-tan-quis (or Black King).

Magh-pi-way (or Red Feather).
Kik-tha-we-nund (or Anderson).
Haw-kin-pum-is-ka (from Sandusky).
Pey-a-mawk-sey (from Sandusky).

Six Nations.

Reyn-two-co f living at Sandusky).

^lis-qua-coo-na-caw (or Red Pole). ■

Cut-the-we-ka-saw (or Black Hoof).

Kay-se-wa-e-se-kah. ,

Wey-tha-pa-mat-tha. ,


^^'ay-the-ah (or Long Shanks).

Wey-a-pier-sen-waw (or Blue Jacket).

Xe-que taugh-aw.

Hah-goo-see-kaw (or Captain Reed).


A^a-goh-quan-gogh (or Le Gris).

Ale-she-kun-nogh-quoh (or Little Turtle). i

Pee-jee-wa (or Richardville).

Coch-ke-pogh-fogh. ^

Wa-pa-man-gwa (or AVhite Loon).

She-me-kun-ne-sa (or Soldier) of the Eel river tribe.

Weas (for Themselves and the Piankeshaws.)

A-nia-cun-sa (or Little Beaver).


A-coo-la-tha (or Little Fox).

Kickapoos and Kaskaskias.


Ne-nugh-ka (or Reynard).


Pottawatomies (From the St. Joseph River).


Naw-ac (for himself and brother Et-si-me-the ).


Kee-sass (or Sun).

Ka-ba-ma-saw (for himself and brother Chi-sau-gaii).


Wap-me-me (\\'hite Pigeon).

'\^'a-che-ness (for himself and brother Pe-dar-go-shak).



Me-she-ge-the-nogh (for himself and brother W'a-wal-sek).






Thaw-me (or Level Plane).

Gee-que ffor himself and brother She-win-seV

Pottawatomies (From Huron).



Na-naw-me (for himself and brother A-gin).



Che-go-nick-ska (from Sandusky).

V^f^-^ :Cv^^ "^yUL


-/- -io/rU^

1^ (/r^^^i^!^'^^'^^^




(Courtesy Ohio Arch. & Hist. Society)



Mash-i-pi-nash-i-wi5h (or Bad Bird).

Xah-sho-ga-she (from Lake Superior).

Ka-tha-wa-sung. ^

Ma-sass. :

Ne-me-kass (or Little Thunder).

Pe-shaw-kay (or Young One).






Among the chief speakers were Blue Jacket, the Shaw-
anese ; Massas, the Chippewa ; Tarhe, or Crane, the Wyandot,
and Augoosh-avvay, the Ottawa. Besides the signatures of
George Washington and Anthony Wayne, the names of Wil-
liam H. Harrison, aide-de-camp, and several officers, inter-
preters and scouts appear on the treaty. Among the latter
were William Wells, Christopher Miller and Isaac Zane. The
treaty was neatly engrossed in the legible penmanship of the
day on two pieces of parchment about twenty-six inches
square, one of which was inscribed on both sides.

An excellent photographic copy, exact size of the original,
is today framed and exhibited on the walls of the public mu-
seum in the basement of the Carnegie Library, Greenville,

The preamble states the purpose of the treaty "to put an
end to a destructive war. to settle all controversies and to
restore harmony and friendly intercourse between the L^nited
States and Indian tribes."

The nine articles provide for the cessation of hostilities,
exchange of prisoners, definite description of boundaries, the
delivery of $20,000 worth of goods at once to the Indians and
the promise of $9,500 worth of goods yearly forever there-

The respective rights and privileges of the Indians and
Americans within the lands and reservations ceded and the
penalties for violation are also explicitly set forth. The boun-
dary line established began at the mouth of the Cuyahoga
river, ran up that stream to the portage crossing to the Tus-
carawas across this portage (which was a part of the ancient
boundarv between the Six Nations and the lands of the North'


west tribesj, down that stream to Fort Laurens (near Bolivar,
Ohio), thence westerly to near Loramies (Fort Loramie,
Ohio), (on a branch of the Miami at the beginning of the port-
age to the St. Mary's), thence to Fort Recovery and thence
southwesterly to a point on the Ohio opposite the mouth of
the Kentucky river, embracing about two^thirds of the pres-
ent state of Ohio, and a triangular piece of southeastern In-
diana. Besides this large and valuable tract, numerous small
but invaluable tracts, mostly from two to twelve miles square,
were included, among them being the present sites of Defi-
ance, Ohio, Fort Wayne, Ind., Toledo, Ohio, Fremont, Ohio,
Detroit, Mich., St. Mary's, Ohio. Sandusky, Ohio, Mackinac,
Chicago, 111., Peoria, 111., Vincennes, Ind., and 150,000 acres
above the falls of the Ohio, opposite Louisville, Ky., to Gen-
eral George R. Clark and his soldiers. The privileges of trad-
ing between these posts was also granted to the Americans,
and this proved to be an entering wedge, which was finally to
help split up the tribal confederacy and counteract its power.

It is now impossible to estimate the value of these conces-
sions. At the centennial celebration at Greenville, August
3, 1895, Governor AVilliani McKinley said, "The day thrills
with historic interest. It is filled with stirring memories and
recalls the struggles of the past for peace and the majesty of
constitutional government. It is most fitting to celebrate
this anniversary. It marks an epoch in our ci^■ilization. One
hundred years ago Indian hostilities were suppressed and the
compact of peace concluded between the government and the
Indians, which made the northwest the undisputed territory
of the LTnited States, and what was once a dense wilderness,
inhabited by barbarous tribes, is now the home of a happv
and progressive people and the center of as high an iirder of
civilization as is to be found an}-where in the world."

The pledge of security given by this treat}- encouraged im-
migration. A hardy population soon settled in the fertile val-
leys, and gained a foothold which has never been relinquished,
and today millions of people live and enjoy the blessings of
civilized life where, but a short time since, a few untutored
savages dwelt. A forcible change in stewardship had taken
place by which the one talent man was supplanted by the ten
talent man. thus forwarding the cause of humanitv and civ-

The importance of this peace is not measured simplv by

Online LibraryThe Hobart publishing CompanyHistory of Darke County, Ohio, from its earliest settlement to the present time .. (Volume 1) → online text (page 10 of 57)