Изображения страниц
[ocr errors]

there acquitted on the ground that the law of the State respecting white residents did not apply to those missionaries and teachers of the Board, who, having received patronage from the government of the United States, were, in a sense, its agents. They were all set at liberty, and returned to the peaceable prosecution of their labors, after having been taken more than a hundred miles, and kept a week absent from their families, and under strict guard.

On the 7th of May, Doctor Elizur Butler, superintendent of the school at Haweis, was arrested and taken from his house by a band of armed soldiers, acting under authority of the governor of Georgia, and after having been carried ten or twelve miles, he was released.

About the end of May, Messrs. Buttrick, Proctor, Worcester, Butler and Thompson, received letters from the governor of Georgia, informing them, that, if they did not remove within ten days they would again be arrested. A

copy of the letter to Mr. Worcester is hereunto annexed, as also the replies of Mr. Worcester and Doctor Butler.

On the 23d of June, Mr. Thompson was again arrested at Hightower; the circumstances of which are detailed in the letters of Miss Fuller, teacher at that station, and a letter of Mr. Thompson himself, which also accompany this. Your memorialists request your particular attention to the treatment which this female received from Col. Nelson, the commander of the detachment, and the threatened seizure of the mission house, and what was growing in the fields.

On the 7th of July, Mr. Worcester and Doctor Butler were again arrested by armed soldiers, acting under the orders of the Governor of Georgia. The treatment which they received during the fifteen days that they were in the hands of the Georgia Guard, and the hardships and dangers to which they were exposed, are detailed in a letter of Mr. Worcester which also accompanies this.

All this the missionaries and teachers under the patronage of your memorialists have been made to suffer, while no other crime was preved or charged upon them, than that of being found where the government of the United States had authorized them to go, and of quietly prosecuting the work which they were in the same manner authorized to perform, and for which they

from year to year received the express approbation of the executive of the United States. They have suffered this, also, your memorialists would add, from a military force acting under the authority of the State of Georgia, in direct violation of that clause of the constitution, which forbids any state to keep troops in time of peace. By these troops their labors have been interrupted, their persons seized, insulted, chained, and abused, torn from their families in time of sickness, driven great distances on foot, their feelings outraged, their bodies incarcerated, held by the military, the right of habeas corpus denied them, and they at length brought before courts to which they were not amenable, and finally subjected to an ignominious punishment in the penitentiary:

Your memorialists would also further state, that the right of property has been invaded. Soldiers under the authority of the state of Georgia have forcibly ejected the occupants of the mission house at Hightower, erected and

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

owned hy your memorialists, and occupied it for quarters for themselves, in direct violation of that clause of the constitution which declares that " no soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner." They have appropriated to their own use, or destroyed, household furniture and other property, and appropriated for fond or forage the corn and other vegetables which they found in the fields. They have also asserted a claim to the buildings, improvements, and other property, be. longing to your memorialists at other stations, and threatened to eject the mission families.

Having thus presented the grievances which the teachers and missionaries under the patronage of this Board are enduring, and the dangers to which their persons are exposed, your meinorialists pray that the arm of the executive may be interposed for their protection and deliverance; that they may be secured in the peaceful prosecution of their labors for the instruction of the Cherokees, unmolested by the civil or military officers of the State of Georgia ; that, as citizens of the United States, they may not be liable to arrest, separation from their families, abuse and imprisonment by armed soldiers; that if charges are alleged against them, they may be brought to trial before an impartial tribunal, competent to the jurisdiction of the case.

Your memorialists would further pray that the Attorney General may be directed to commence a suit in the Courts of the United States against the offending officers of the State of Georgia, for the false imprisonment, and other injurious treatment of the teachers and missionaries, in violation of the treaties and laws of this Union, and of their rights as citizens of the same, And your memorialists, as in duty bound, will ever pray.

By order of the Board.


Chairman of the Prudential Committee.

[Reply of the Secretary of War to the above Memorial.]



November 14, 1831. Sır: I have received and submitted to the President the Memorial of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, transmitted in your letter of the 3d instant, and I am instructed by him to inform you, that having on mature consideration satisfied himself that the Legislatures of the respective States have power to extend their laws over all persons living within their boundaries, and that, when thus extended, the various acts of Congress, providing a mode of proceeding in cases of Indian intercourse, inconsistent with these laws, become inoperative, he has no authority to interfere, under the circumstances stated in the Memorial. I have the honor to be, very respectfully,

Your obedient servant, (Signed)

LEWIS CASS. WILLIAM REED, Esq. Chairman of the Prudential Committee

of the A. B. C. F. M., Boston.

[The following is the letter referred to in the memorial, from Mr. Crawford, then Secretary of War, to Mr. Kingsbury; giving permission to the missionaries and teachers of the Board to enter the Cherokee country, and assuring them of the countenance and aid of the United States Government. The other letters from the War Department to the officers and missionaries of the Board, written subsequently, and forwarded with the memorial to the President, are similar in their spirit and purport to the letter of Mr. Crawford; but as they were written as circumstances called them forth, they are more particular and explicit.

The documents which are stated in the memorial to have been forwarded to the President relating to the arrest, trial, and imprisonment of the missionaries, and to the seizure of the mission property, have already been published so extensively, that it is not deemed necessary to insert them here.]


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

(Letter of W. H. Crawford to Rev. Cyrus Kingsbury.]

14th May, 1816.

Sir: Your letter of the 2d instant, upon the subject of establishing schools
in the Cherokee Nation, has been received.

The President approves of the undertaking, and will direct such aid to be given as the laws will permit.

In the first instance, the Agent will be directed to erect a comfortable school-house, and another for the teacher and such as may board with him, in such part of the Nation as shall be selected for that purpose. He will also be directed to furnish two ploughs, six hoes, and as many axes, for the purpose of introducing the art of cultivation among the pupils.

Whenever he is informed that female children are received and brought into the school, and that a female teacher has been engaged capable of teaching them to spin, weave and sew, a loom and half a dozen spinning wheels, and as many pairs of cards, will be furnished. He will be directed, from time to time, to cause other school-houses to be erected, as they shall become necessary, and as the expectation of ultimate success shall justify the expenditure.

The houses thus erected, and the implements of husbandry and of the mechanical arts which shall be furnished, will remain public property, to be occupied and employed for the benefit of the nation. If the persons who are about to engage in this enterprise should abandon it, the buildings and utensils which shall have been furnished, may be occupied by any other teachers of good moral character.

The only return which is expected by the President is, an annual report of the state of the school, its progress, and its future prospects. This report should present the mode of teaching, and the deviations from that practised in civilized life, which experience shall render necessary.

Should you succeed according to your expectations, it is probable that the attention of Congress will be attracted to the subject, and that the means of

forwarding your beneficent views will be more directly and liberally bestowed
by that enlightened body.
I have the honor to be your most obedient,

very humble servant,


[ocr errors]

MANDATE of the Supreme Court of the United States.

(Referred to at p. 93.] (L. S.) The President of the United States of America; To the honorable

the judge of the Superior Court for the County of Gwinnet in the State of Georgia,

GREETING. Whereas lately in the Superior Court for the County of Gwinnett, in the State of Georgia, before you in a case between the State of Georgia, plaintiff, and Samuel A. Worcester, defendant, on an indictment for residing in the Cherokee Nation, without license, the judgment of the said Superior Court was in the following words, viz: The defendant in this case shall be kept in close custody by the Sheriff of this County until he can be transported to the penitentiary of this State, and the keeper thereof is hereby directed to receive him into his custody and keep him at hard labor in said penitentiary for and during the term of four years, as by the inspection of the transcript of the record of the said Superior Court, which was brought into the Supreme Court of the United States by virtue of a Writ of Error, agreeably to the act of Congress in such case made and provided, fully and at large appears. And whereas, in the present term of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty-two, the said cause came on to be heard before the said Supreme Court on the said transcript of the record and was argued by counsel, on consideration whereof it is the opinion of this Court that the act of the legislature of the State of Georgia upon which the indictment in this case is founded, is contrary to the constitution, treaties and laws of the United States, and that the special plea in bar, pleaded by the said Samuel A. Worcester in the manner aforesaid, and relying upon the constitution, treaties and laws of the United States aforesaid, is a good bar and defence to the said indictment by the said Samuel A. Worcester, and as such ought to have been allowed and admitted by the said Superior Court for the County of Gwinnett, in the State of Georgia, before which the said indictment was pending and tried, and that there was error in the said Superior Court of the State of Georgia in overruling the plea so pleaded as aforesaid: It is therefore ordered and adjudged, that the judgment rendered in the premises by the said Superior Court of Georgia, upon the verdict upon the plea of not guilty afterwards pleaded by the said Samuel A. Worcester, whereby the said Samuel A. Worcester is sentenced to hard labor in the penitentiary of the State of Georgia, ought to be reversed and annulled, and thi Court proceeding to render such judgment as the said Superior Court of the State of Georgia

should have rendered, it is further ordered and adjudged that the said judg. ment of the said Superior Court be, and the same is hereby reversed and annulled, and that judgment be, and hereby is awarded, that the special plea in bar so as aforesaid pleaded, is a good and sufficient plea in bar in law to the indictment aforesaid, and that all proceedinys on the said indictment do forever surcease, and that the said Samuel A. Worcester be, and hereby is, henceforth, dismissed therefrom, and that he go thereof, quit without day, and that a special mandate do go from this Court to the said Superior Court to carry this judginent into execution ;

You therefore are hereby commanded that such other proceedings be had in said cause in conformity with the judyinent of said Supreme Court of the United States, as according to right and justice and the laws of the said United States ought to be had, the said writ of error notwithstanding.

Witness, the honorable John Marshall, Chief Justice of said Supreme Court, the second Monday of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty-two. (Signed)

Clerk of the Supreme Court of the United States.

The manner in which the foregoing mandate was received by the court of Gwinnett county, and disposed of, has been seen in the Report. Subsequently Mr. Chester, counsel for Messrs. Worcester and Butler, laid the mandate, together with a statement of the facts relative to its presentation in the court of Gwinnett county, before his excellency the governor of the State of Georgia, accompanied by the following letter.

Milledgeville, 4th April, 1832. To his excellency Wilson LUMPKIN, governor of Georgia;

Sır: Enclosed are copies of decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States in the cases of Samuel A. Worcester and Elizur Butler, now confined in the penitentiary of this State. I also enclose the copy of an affidavit shewing what has been done in the superior court of Gwinnett county in relation to these decisions and the mandutes of the Supreme Court.

The individuals named, charged with no moral turpitude, but only with the omission to do a certain act which the Supreme Court has determined could not be required of them consistently with the supreme laws of this land, are still subjected to all the rigors of penitentiary servitude under the authority of the State. Not only in this country but in every other where the principles of a free and constitutional government are recognized, and adjudication in favor of the liberty of a citizen-has ever been held a sufficient warrant for his enlargement. I submit to your excellency whether it be consistent with the principles of our free institutions to keep in confinement any individual in whose favor there exists such an adjudication, and that adjudication by a court acknowledged to be the higliest known to vur laws. In favor of liberty the law makes every presumption. To prevent its infringement the strongest guards have been provided. And lest the law should at any time operate too severely, the executive is vested with the attribute of

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »