Treaty of Hopewell

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Treaty of Hopewell
Signed28 November 1785 (1785-11-28)
3 January 1786 (1786-01-03)
10 January 1786 (1786-01-10)
Parties
CitationsStat. 18; 7 Stat. 21; 7 Stat. 24.

Three agreements, each known as the Treaty of Hopewell, were signed between representatives of the Congress of the United States and the Cherokee, Choctaw, and Chickasaw peoples, were negotiated and signed at the Hopewell plantation in South Carolina during the winter of 1785–86.

Hopewell plantation[edit]

U.S. Representative Andrew Pickens

The treaties were signed at the plantation owned by General Andrew Pickens, which and the treaty texts refer to as “Hopewell on the Keowee.” James Mooney records that, "It was situated on the northern edge of the present Anderson county, on the east side of Keowee River, opposite and a short distance below the entrance of Little river, and about three miles from the present Pendleton. In sight of it, on the opposite side of Keowee, was the old Cherokee town of Seneca, destroyed by the Americans in 1776."[1]

Cherokee treaty[edit]

On November 28, 1785, the first Treaty of Hopewell was signed between the U.S. representative Benjamin Hawkins and the Cherokee Indians. The treaty laid out a western boundary for American settlement. The treaty gave rise to the sardonic Cherokee phrase of Talking Leaves, since they claimed that when the treaties no longer suited the Americans, they would blow away like talking leaves. A description of the boundary is found on Article 4 of the accord:

The boundary allotted to the Cherokees for their hunting grounds, between the said Indians and the citizens of the United States, within the limits of the United States of America, is, and shall be the following, viz. Beginning at the mouth of Duck river, on the Tennessee; thence running north-east to the ridge dividing the waters running into Cumberland from those running into the Tennessee; thence east-wardly along the said ridge to a north-east line to be run, which shall strike the river Cumberland forty miles above Nashville; thence along the said line to the river; thence up the said river to the ford where the Kentucky road crosses the river; thence to Campbell's line, near Cumberland gap; thence to the mouth of Claud's creek on Holstein; thence to the Chimney-top mountain; thence to Camp-creek, near the mouth of Big Limestone, on Nolichuckey; thence a southerly course six miles to a mountain; thence south to the North-Carolina line; thence to the South-Carolina Indian boundary, and along the same south-west over the top of the Oconee mountain till it shall strike Tugaloo river; thence a direct line to the top of the Currohee mountain; thence to the head of the south fork of Oconee river.[2]

Included in the signatures of the Cherokee delegation were several from leaders of the Chickamauga (Lower Cherokee), including two from the town of Chickamauga itself and one from Lookout Mountain Town.

The Cherokee complained at the treaty that some 3,000 white settlers of the de facto State of Franklin were already squatting on the Cherokee side of the agreed line, between the Holston and French Broad Rivers, and they continued to dispute that region until a new border was defined by the 1791 Treaty of Holston.[3]

Cherokee treaty terms[edit]

The preamble begins with,

THE Commissioners Plenipotentiary of the United States of America give peace to all the Cherokee nation, and receive them into the favor and protection of the United States of America, on the following conditions: ...

— Treaty of Hopewell, 1785

The following lists the terms of the treaty:

1. Indians to restore prisoners (who are U.S. citizens or their allies), slaves, and property.
2. The United States to restore prisoners to the Indians.
3. Cherokees acknowledge protection provided by the United States.
4. Boundaries defined.
5. No citizen of United States shall settle on Indian lands and Indians may punish violators as they please.
6. Indians to deliver criminals who commit robbery, murder, or capital crimes.
7. Citizens of United States committing crimes against Indians to be punished.
8. Retaliation restrained.
9. United States to regulate trade.
10. Special provision for trade.
11. Cherokees to give notice of any known designs against United States by tribes or any person.
12. Indians may send a "deputy," i.e., representative, to Congress.
13. Peace and friendship perpetual.

Congressional deputy[edit]

Article XII states "That the Indians […] shall have the right to send a deputy of their choice, whenever they think fit, to Congress." In 2019, Cherokee Nation principal chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. cited a provision of the 1835 Treaty of New Echota that states that the Cherokee "shall be entitled to a delegate in the House of Representatives of the United States whenever Congress shall make provision for the same,"[4] in announcing that he intended to appoint, for the first time, a Congressional delegate from the Cherokee Nation.[5] Pending a decision of the Cherokee National Council, Hoskin said he would nominate Kimberly Teehee, a member of the Cherokee Nation who formerly served as a policy advisor in the administration of President Barack Obama, to the post.[5]

Choctaw treaty[edit]

The US–Choctaw Treaty of Hopewell was signed by the Choctaw at the foothills of the Smoky Mountains on January 3, 1786. The ceded area amounted to 69,120 acres, and the compensation to the Choctaw took the form of protection by the United States.[6] To elaborate, the plenipoteniaries were Benjamin Hawkins, Andrew Pickens and Joseph Martin representing the U.S. while representing the Choctaw were 13 small medal and 12 medal and gorget captains.

Choctaw treaty terms[edit]

The preamble begins with,

THE Commissioners Plenipotentiary of the United States of America give peace to all the Choctaw nation, and receive them into the favor and protection of the United States of America, on the following conditions: ...

— Treaty of Hopewell, 1786

The following lists the terms of the treaty:

1. Indians to restore prisoners (who are U.S. citizens or their allies), slaves, and property.
2. Choctaws acknowledge protection provided by the United States.
3. Boundaries defined.
4. No citizen of United States shall settle on Indian lands and Indians may punish violators as they please.
5. Indians to deliver criminals who commit robbery, murder, or capital crimes.
6. Citizens of United States committing crimes against Indians to be punished.
7. Retaliation restrained.
8. United States to regulate trade.
9. Special provision for trade.
10. Choctaws to give notice of any known designs against United States by tribes or any person.
11. Peace and friendship perpetual.

Chickasaw treaty[edit]

On January 10, 1786, the Treaty of Hopewell was signed between U.S. representatives Benjamin Hawkins, Andrew Pickens, and Joseph Martin and the Chickasaw leaders Taski Etoka, Piomingo, and Lotapaia.[7]

Chickasaw treaty terms[edit]

The preamble begins with,

THE Commissioners Plenipotentiary of the United States of America give peace to the Chickasaw People, and receive them into the favor and protection of the said States, on the following conditions: ...

— Final Treaty of Hopewell, 1786

The following lists the terms of the treaty:

1. Indians to restore prisoners, slaves, and property.
2. Acknowledge the protection of United States.
3. Boundaries defined.
4. No citizen of United States shall settle on Indian lands and Chickasaws may punish them as they please.
5. Indians to deliver up criminals.
6. Citizens of United States committing crimes against Indians to be punished.
7. Retaliation restrained.
8. United States to regulate trade.
9. Special provision for trade
10. Indians to give notice of any known designs against United States.
11. Peace and friendship perpetual.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Mooney, James; Smithsonian Institution. Bureau of American Ethnology. (1902). Myths of the Cherokee. Washington, DC: Government Printing Office. Retrieved 2021-03-22. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ Indian Affairs: Laws and Treaties (Text of the 1785 Cherokee Treaty).
  3. ^ Mooney, Myths of the Cherokee, p. 61 ff.
  4. ^ "Treaty with the Cherokee, 1835 - Article 7". OKState Library Digital Collections. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
  5. ^ a b Krakow, Morgan (2019-08-26). "200 years ago, the Cherokee Nation was offered a seat in Congress. It just announced its chosen delegate". Washington Post. Retrieved 2019-08-26.
  6. ^ Reeves, Carolyn K. The Choctaw before Removal. University Press of Mississippi Jackson. 214.
  7. ^ "The Last of the Chickasaw Kings" archived

External links[edit]