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Title Journal of the commissioners of the United States [manuscript]: appointed to hold conferences with the several nations of Indians south of the Ohio / commenced by Colo. Hawkins one of the commrs. on the 18th July
Author Hawkins, Benjamin (1754-1816)
Document Type Diary
Description From the Newberry Library Catalogue: Contemporary copy made by Andrew Pickens of the journal kept by the U.S. commissioners, 1801-1802, prior to and during treaty negotiations with the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Creek tribes. Journal contains daily entries, together with correspondence, minutes, and texts of treaties. Correspondence includes commissioners’ appointments and instructions from the Secretary of War, Henry Dearborn; invitations and further correspondence of Dearborn and the commissioners with the tribes; commissioners’ progress reports to Dearborn; and letters to Thomas Jefferson and the governors of Tennessee and Georgia (John Sevier and Josiah Tattnall). Minutes of treaty councils include the addresses of James Wilkinson and responses by tribal chiefs (Doublehead, Esau Haujo, etc.). Also contains treaties concluded with the Chickasaws and Choctaws. Volume ends with June 11, 1802, minutes of Creek negotiations, prior to the conclusion of a treaty with that tribe.
Names Dearborn, Henry (1751-1829); Doublehead (d.1807); Haujo, Esau; Jefferson, Thomas (1743-1826); Pickens, Andrew (1739-1817); Wilkinson, James (1757-1825)
Places Tennessee, Georgia, United States
Keywords government, government relations, treaty, land tenure, commissioner, negotiation, council
Theme American Indians and the US Government
Tribe / Nation
Culture Area Southeast
Additional Information

In May, 1800, Congress authorized $15,000 to conclude treaties with the Indian tribes south of the Ohio River. Secretary of War Henry Dearborn’s instructions to his commissioners, William Davie (replaced by Andrew Pickens), Benjamin Hawkins, and James Wilkinson, contained requests for roads (with roadside inns and ferries) through Cherokee, Chickasaw, and Choctaw lands and land cessions from the Creeks. The commissioners were unsuccessful in persuading the Cherokees to grant a road, but concluded treaties with the Chickasaws (Chickasaw Bluffs, Tenn., Oct. 24, 1801) and the Choctaws (Fort Adams, Tenn., Dec. 17, 1801) allowing roads, but not inns or ferries. At Fort Wilkinson, Ga., in June, 1802, the Creeks ceded two tracts of land in exchange for perpetual annuities, goods, debt payments, and chiefs’ salaries.

Signed and noted on last page: Andw Pickens Jr true copy. Signed on front endpaper: F.W. Pickens. Bookplate of Frank C. Deering.

Library The Newberry Library
Copyright The Newberry Library
Collection The Edward E. Ayer Collection
Reference VAULT Ayer MS 3180
Catalogue Link The Newberry Library Catalogue