1764 Message by Lieutenant Governor John Penn delivered to the departing Christian Indians through William Logan
[Punctuation and spelling is as it appears in the original document]
The Honble. John Penn Lieut. Governor of Pennsylvania Speech to the Indians going to New York — As Delivered at Trenton on the 7th Day of Jan. 1764 —
David Zeisberg & Indian Joshua
I should have been pleased to have had the Opportunity of Speaking to You before You went out of Town But the Great Hurry You were obliged to move in, to Accompany Capt. Robeson prevented me. I therefore desired Mr. Logan to go with You part of the Way and to take the first Opportunity of Delivering You my Message, which I request You to attend closely to, and that You will deliver to the Indians who live about General Johnsons and to the Indians in the six Nations Country.
It is as follows
Brethren of the Six Nations —
You well know that It has always been a fixed Agreement between Us, that Whenever any Accident or Evil befell Either of Us, We should take the first Opportunity to Inform each other of it. As I have this Opportunity by some of our Brethren who are going at their own Request to General Johnson. It is with Great Sorry I inform You, That some of Your People have since we Entered into our solemn Peace at Easton in the most cruel Manner murthered a Great Number of my People, Who, in full Confidence of Your keeping up closely to Your Engagements, had Returned to their Settlements.
This unexpected Barbarous Conduct without any Cause Given on our Part, had so embittered the Minds of their Relations and Friends who live on our Frontiers that they formed themselves into a small Body and came down without my Knowledge, and have killed those Indians who lived at the Connoytown near Connestogoe, being twenty in all, Men Women & Children.
Their Manner in Coming down to that Town was so sudden and private, that neither I, nor any of my Council knew of it till it was all over, Otherwise I should have Endeavoured to have prevented it.
I am now taking all the Measures in my Power to find out the People who have committed the Murders and have Issued my Proclamation, and offered a Reward of Two hundred Pounds for apprehending each Man, That they may be put to Death according to our Laws and I Desire You will find out and Inform the Relations of those Indians of what has happened to their Friends, and the Steps I am taking to bring the Offenders to Justice — I now send them Twenty one Black Strand Match Coats to cover their Graves and Twenty one Handker. to wipe the Tears from their Eyes.
Here deliverd the Strands & Hankers.
I allow when anything of this Sort happens on either Side, It is very Sorrowfull and Aggravating, But You must own That Your unruly Young Men have been the first Cause of all the Troubles and Murthers which have happened since we made Peace with each other. It is now about Nine Months since the first Struck us near Pitsburg Without any Cause Given by my People, and many have since that Time been cruelly killed. I therefore desire You will take the Hatchet out of your Young Peoples Hands, and tell them That by their not Hearckening to the Advice of their old Wise Men They have brought all these troubles on themselves and Us. — Let what has past be all forgot on both Sides, Let the Hatchet be buried so deep in the Ground as to be Out of the Reach of Your Young Men.
If you do this, Whe shall then live in Peace & Plenty as our Forefathers used to do. — To assure You that this is my Earnest Request and that I desire to live in Peace with You I send You this Belt of Wampum.
A Belt of 7 Rows.
Our Brethren the Indians who lived at Bethlehem hearing of the Death of their Brethren at Connestogoe Were very Uneasy lest Some Micschief should also befall them. I have therefore at their Request Sent them under a Guard of Soldiers to New york, to go from then to General Johnson, to live near him. — All these Indians can Inform You how kindly they have been treated here by me and my People, and our Good Dispositions toward them, and that the Mischief which has lately happened must not be Imputed to me nor any of my Sober People, but to the Angry Youngman on the Frontiers whose Relations have been Killed by Your Indians.
Our Brother Papanohal and the Indians who lived at Wyalousin and had lately come down to live near me, are now gone to live with their Friends in Jersey below Burlington, Where I make no doubt they will live verry happy, as the Governor of the Jerseys has promised them his Protection. Of This I Desire You will as soon as possible inform Newwoleka, who lives near Wyalousin, lest he should think some Accident has befallen him. — To assure you, that what I have Said is true. I give you this Belt
A Belt of 6 Rows
Updated: 20 September 2005