Letter Transcription

To the Legislature of the State
of New York



We have had several Talks with your

Commissioners about our Title and Claims to a great

tract of land in this State. They cannot shew any Title

to the lands from any Indian Nation and yet they

ask us to shew our Title which we think very unrea

=sonable and unfair  You keep Records in writing

of your transactions_ our traditions are our records

we are the remnant of those nations whom you

Admit to have been once the owners of all this part of

the Country_ We ought then to be presumed to be

still the owners unless you can shew that we or our an

-cestors have sold it_ which you cannot


Brothers we wish to live with you in peace and love

and therefore seeing we cannot agree we will

at present drop this matter_ We wish to imitate

your Ways of life_ but it is not in our power

to do this suddenly_ We have not learnt these

things when we were young and now that we are

grown up we cannot at once adopt them_ If our

children could be educated in your ways_ if they

could be taught to read and to write the principles

of religion and Morality the Mechanic Arts and your

skill of Agriculture_ We might hope to Adopt your

mode of life_ but we are poor and have not the means

of giving to our Children these advantages_ and you

refuse to furnish them to us_ Why are we called your

brothers if you refuse to give us that Assistance which

one brother has a right to expect from another accor

=ding to the laws even of Indian hospitality_ and

According to the dictates of the religion which you

teach us 


Brothers  Why of all the Indian nations within your

limits are we the only one who do not partake of your

bounty_ Were we less or were we not more your

friends when you fought with your enemies from

beyond the great waters_ Is it because we are

[p. 2]

poor  before we knew you We were rich for we

had all we wanted is it that we are feeble_ When

you were as a little Shrub_ we were as a mighty

tree_ you may be also feeble and solicit in

Vain from some mighty Nation the pittance

which you now deny to us



     You exhort to us to abandon our

Savage life and to Adopt your manners

We desire to Attempt it for we see how great

Advantage it gives you over us_ you exhort

us_ but you refuse the means


Listen to us and the great good spirit will

reward your goodness_ If you should fina

=lly shut your ears may that great spirit

forgive you

          This is all I have to say 

               Hendrick Aupaumut

          Sachem and Agent

          of the Muhheconnuk

          Stockbridge Tribe in

          behalf of the Nation


Letter Transcription