24 July 2005
ARTICLES FROM THE DELAWARE MISSIONS by Richard C. Adams
DELAWARES IN UNITED STATES WARS
"A serious book filled with the knowledge and lore of the Delaware." No Illustrations, extensive index and appendix, with footnotes, 80pp P $8.95 Hope Farm Press Publisher of New York Regional History 252 Main Street Saugerties NY 12477 914-246-3522
The following is from Richard C. Adam's, The Delaware Indians: A Brief History (1906), Chapter IV):
In most every war in which the
United States has been engaged some of the Delaware Indians aided and assisted
the Government, and even in the Florida war we find that the Delawares furnished
about 100 warriors, guides, and scouts for the United States Army. But it seems
that in their military service, like their other dealings, they were
neglected. Following are two letters on file in the Office of the Commissioner
of Indian Affairs ion this subject:
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, June 28, 1855.
SIR: Your letter of the 15th instant, inclosing one from Agent Robinson requesting copies of lists of the names of Delaware warriors who have performed military service for the United States, and which were forwarded here by you in September, 1853, was duly received.
For his convenience and information I transmit herewith copies of the lists named by him, also one naming those Shawnees who have obtained bounty-land warrants for services in the Florida war, which was furnished to the Office at the same time.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, CHARLES E. MIX, Acting Commissioner. A. CUMMING, Esq. Superintendent of Indian Affairs, St. Louis, Mo.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS April 23, 1862.
SIR: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the instant, inclosing an application from the Delaware chiefs for money due them for military service in the Florida war, and have to inform you that as the subject pertains to the jurisdiction of the War Department, the papers have been referred to the Secretary of the Interior, with the request that the same be referred to the Secretary of War.
Very respectfully your obedient servant, Wm. P. DOLE, Commissioner. S. S. MENAGER, Present. [p. 36]
As early as January, 1793, the Delawares and Shawnees negotiated with Baron de
Carondelet for lands west of the Mississippi, in the State of Missouri, and the
Delawares resided there until 1815. About this time the Cherokee were living on
the Arkansas River at that place, which afterwards became the
The Osages, a powerful tribe who claimed the territory, made war against the Cherokee and were about to subdue them, when messengers were sent to the Delaware in Indiana, beseeching their aid. The Delawares sent warriors to their rescue and found the Cherokee near Cantonment Gibson (later Fort Gibson), in a stockade they had erected for their defense, the Osages having seized most of their stock, destroyed their homes, and forced them to this place. As the Algonkin warriors marched in, there was great rejoicing among the Cherokee, and after a few days of rest -- dancing and feasting -- they marched against the Osages, who had withdrawn west of Grand River. They overtook them at a place called Cabin Creek, but this fight was only a skirmish. From there the Osages retired to a high hill on the east side of the Verdigris river. After sending their women and children across the river, which was swollen from recent rains, the Osage warriors fortified themselves on top of this hill; which is quite difficult to ascend, owing to the stone precipices around the summit. The Cherokee, and especially the Delawares, were mostly well armed with guns, the Osages principally having bows, arrows, and spears. The battle raged from early in the morning until late in the afternoon, during which the Osages would roll large stones and boulders over the precipice. to repel the assaults of the Cherokee and the delawares. But in spite of the advantage in position and numbers possessed by the Osages, the summit was gained in the afternoon, and the Osages completely routed. Their chief, Claremore, was killed and buried on the mound which was named after him. Thereafter the Cherokee had no further trouble from this source.
Another party of Cherokee went on still further south and located in Texas, on the Sabine River, where they had established themselves as frontier guards between the settlers of Texas and the wild Indians of the plains, who would swoop down from the territory of the United States into that part of Mexico and had become a constant menace to her subjects in that part of the Republic now known as Texas. These Cherokee, too, soon needed the aid and assistance of the Algonkins, and the Delawares, true to their alliance, the Shawnees, and a few other of the Algonkin tribes again went to their rescue.
Here, on the Sabine River, we find the Indians who had justly claimed much of of North American continent, making a treaty with first one class of the invaders and then with another, and finally getting a grant, or an acknowledgement of title, to the land from both Mexico and Texas, and, having faith in their promises and fighting for the protection of Texas, only to find themselves cruelly driven away as soon as Texas was able to do without the Indian's aid, notwithstanding the fact that Texas had guaranteed protect them against invasion, or purchase the land should the Indians wish to sell.
This chapter of history is well told by referring to parts of an old letter. which is as follows:
The undersigned chiefs of the Shawnee and Delaware Indians acting for their tribes, having faith in the justice and truth of our white brethren in the great State of Texas and faith in their Great Captain, Sam Houston, and others in the world beyond the skies, respectfully ask the assistance, relying upon the promises aforesaid of your excellency, in carrying out these promises made in good faith to our people.
The agreement between the Delaware and Shawnee Indians entered into between the Republic of Texas and themselves was unfortunately lost and destroyed by fire some time during the year 1955. We have, through the ad extended by many of your people, been made acquainted with many facts which conclusively proves to us that we are in justice entitled to consideration and help from the white brethren of the State of Texas.
The first fact to which we beg to call to your attending as tending to prove our rights to consideration and aid from the State of Texas, is the treaty signed at Colonel Bowles' village, on the 23rd day of February, 1836, in the first year of the provisional government of Texas, for a more detailed description of the matters set forth in the treaty, reference is made here to the record of the same in the Department of State and the War Department.
The treaty shows that its object and purpose was to provide for an everlasting peace between the Shawnees and delawares and the Republic of Texas, and the various other tribes within the borders of the Republic.
A short time subsequent to the making of this treaty, the Republic of Texas records the fact, and the same is recollected by many pioneers of your great State, that a conspiracy was entered between the Mexicans, then resident in your State, and many of the wild tribes of Indians, which tribes are named in the treaty before referred to, and they rebelled against the State of Texas. This conspiracy having been brought to the notice of the Shawnee and Delaware Indians before the whites had any knowledge thereof, it was revealed by the Shawnee and Delaware Indians, and the same thwarted by reason of knowledge of the conspiracy being communicated to the whites before the same became well organized. The Delawares and Shawnees on being solicited by the other Indians and Mexicans to take part in the conspiracy, refused to do so, and the lead chief of the Shawnees immediately learning of such conspiracy dispatched his own son to notify the whites of its existence, and thereby enabled them to prepare and circumvent the same.
They suffered many indignities and deprivations of property and person by reason of having revealed the knowledge of this conspiracy to the white people and the wild tribes and the Mexicans retaliated in various ways, and they lost a great deal of property and life by reason of their loyalty to the conditions of the treaty entered into as before stated. These are the facts that appear on record in the War Department and the rest in the memory of all of the old pioneers now living.
In the year 1839 there was a general order issued by the Federal Government for the removal of all the Indians from the Republic of Texas. Through the intercession of the the acting president of the provisional government, Lamar, the commissioner who was charged with carrying out the order of removal, was prevailed upon not to molest or remove the Shawnees and Delawares.
The next fact to which attention is called as tending to prove our consideration to aid and to help, and to be reimbursed for the land deeded to us by treaty, is two letters from the commissioners of the State of Texas, written January 4, 1841, and also to an account allowed by President Sam Houston for expenses incurred by the Delawares and Shawnees for ferriage for themselves and horses in crossing the river to go on the warpath against the Comanche Indians, and to suppress them at the instance of the Republic aforesaid. The records of the Department of State show the issuance of ammunition to the Shawnees and Delawares for the purpose of carrying out this war for the suppression of the Comanches. The records further show that the Shawnees and the Delawares afterwards acted as interpreters in the peace brought about by their services at the council which lasted from the 28th day of March to the 17th day of April in the year 1842.
The records further show that President Houston gave his duebill to Joe Harry and Jack Harry for services in protecting the frontier in 1842. The records further show that one Jim Shaw, a Delaware, rescued a Mrs. Tidwell and her children from the Comanches and delivered them to their bosom friends. This evidence is referred to for the purpose of showing that the Shawnees and Delawares were always loyal to the treaty entered into between them and the State of Texas on the 23rd day of February, 1836, which treaty is signed by Sam Houston and John Forbes on the part of the provisional government of Texas, and the head chief of the various tribes mentioned in said treaty. These facts, taken in connection with the valuable services rendered by them during the various, Indian Wars, as shown by the records of the War Department, prove that they are entitled to be reimbursed for the lands ceded them by the Republic of Texas.
We also call attention to the minutes of the council held at Tiwocana Creek commencing on Tuesday, the 28th of March, 1843. There was present as commissioner in behalf of the provisional government of Texas, G. W. Terrell, John S. Black, and T. J. Smith, and T. Brysen, secretary of said commission; the commission on behalf of the United States was Hon Pierce Butler.
The following tribes were represented in this council, viz: The Delawares, Shawnees, Caddoes, Waccoes, Ironise, Anadarkas, Tawaconos, Keeches. The following individuals acted as interpreters during the sitting of the council, viz: John Connor, Jim Secondeyne, Jim Shaw, Louis Sanches, Jessy Chisholm, and Red Horse. These were the chief men of the Delawares and Shawnee Indians and were used by the State of Texas in negotiating and treatying with the other tribes of Indians.
The agreement for a treaty was affected at this council between all the hostile tribes of Indians within the borders of the State, and afterwards all these tribes were removed to the Indian Territory [present Oklahoma] with the exceptions of the Shawnees and the Delawares, to whom the commissioners on the part of Texas ceded 40 square miles of land situated on the Brazos River.
In view of these facts, and knowing traditionally of our rights to the land so ceded by the commissioners of the provisional government of Texas, for meritorious services as heretofore described, and upon our investigation to the same, we have concluded to ask this great State to reimburse us for the same, or to cede us other lands in lieu of the same, that we may have a home, he fee to be held in the remainder of our nation in trust for all.
In conclusion, we will say that believing in the justice of our rights and relying on the bounty of the State of Texas for redress of wrongs, we ask that other lands be ceded to us in lieu of those, or that an appropriation be made of sufficient money to purchase other lands in place of those formerly ceded us for the purpose of a home.
Though there was never more than 250 Delaware Indians at any one time in the State of Texas, yet they displayed a most important part in that State during its formative period, and the authentic documents still exist containing a record of their many notable deeds of heroism entitling them to a high place in the history of the: Lone Star State." From Marcy's Exploration of the Red River we get the following:
The Comanches during the past year have not been friendly with the Delawares and Shawnees, and although there has as yet been no organized demonstration of hostilities, they have secretly killed several men, and in consequence, our hunters entertain a feeling of revenge toward them. They, however, go out alone every days upon their hunts, are frequently 6 or 8 miles from the command, and seem to have no fears of the Comanches, as they are able to encounter them at any moment and being so poorly mounted that they could not escape, their only alternative would be to act on the defensive. I have cautioned them upon the subject several times, but they say that they are not afraid to meet any of the prairie Indians, proving the odds are not greater than six top one. They are well armed with good rifles -- the use of which they understand perfectly -- are intelligent, active, and brave and in my opinion will ere long take ample sati
satisfaction upon the Comanches for every one of their nation that falls by their hands.
Upon passing the trail of the Indians today, one of our Delawares looked for a moment at the foot-prints, picked up a blade of grass that had been crushed. and said the trail was made two days since, while to us it had every appearance of being quite fresh; subsequent observations satisfied us that he was correct.
Upon another occasion, riding along over the prairies, I saw in the sand what appeared to me to be a bear track, with the impression of all the toes, and heel; on pointing it out to one of the Indians, he instantly called my attention to some blades of grass hanging about 10n inches over the marks, and explained to me that while the wind is blowing these blades of grass and pressed toward the earth, and the oscillation thereby produced had scooped out the light sand into the form I have mentioned. This, when explained, was perfectly simple and intelligible, but I am very much inclined to believe the solution of it would have puzzled the philosophy of a white man for a long time.
A few such men as the Delawares attached to each company of troops upon the Indian frontier would, by their knowledge of Indian character and habits, and their wonderful powers of judging the of country, following tracts, et. (which soldiers can not be taught) enable us to operate to much better advantage amongst the prairie tribes. In several instance when we have had our animals stray away from camp, I have sent sic or eight teamsters for them, who, after spending a lot of time, would often return unsuccessful. I would then send out one Indian who would make a circuit around the camp until he struck the tracks of the lost animals, and following them up would invariable return with them in a short time. In this way their services are almost indispensable upon an expedition like ours. One of our Delawares has seen fresh buffalo tracks today going to the southeast, and we still hope that we may encounter them.
John Bushman [tribe?], our interpreter, was much surprised today, on calling a doe toward him with a deer bleat, to see a small fawn following after its mother, but imagine his astonishment when immediately behind the fawn came a huge panther bounding rapidly toward him and in a twinkling he fastened his claws in the vitals of his victim. He, however, in this instance, caught the tartar,, and paid dearly for his temerity, as John, with a spirit of indignation that would have done credit to the better feelings of any man, raised his rifle and in stead of killing te deer, which was entirely at his mercy, planted the contents in the side of the panther.
The method of hunting deer by the use of the bleat is practiced extensively by the Delawares in this country and with great success
In the Indian office
at Washington, D.C., will be found filed the following letters:
Major NEIGHBORS. BRAZOS AGENCY, October 7, 1855:
DEAR SIR: I left all well at my agency, and the Indians quiet and contented. Twenty-four of Shanico's tribe [which?] came in and reported that he will be in before long. The men returned from Mexico bringing some nine or ten horses, which Tekinsee took from them and turned over to me. He also sent a man to a band of Taconies and brought in five more horses, four of them Delaware horses and one Pino Shaw's horse. Men are at work and pushing things. The party of Delawares that left when you did. a day or two after, returned brining seven scalps and two horses. They report that hey followed the trail for seven days, after their horses, and that it gave out, but they continued the direction until they struck a fresh trail, which was the two that killed Skidmore. They followed that trail across Red River and stopped at noon, when a party of ten Comanche Indians came up to them. They had a conversation and finally camped together, each party watching the other, for Jacob says that he could understand every word they said and they agreed among themselves to attack the Delawares, kill them, and take their horses next morning at daybreak.
But the Delawares lay awake all night, and at daybreak they opened fire upon them and killed four, charged the rest and killed all but two, one of whom was badly wounded, and the other they could have killed but they wanted him to carry the news of their defeat back to the Comanche. One they did not scalp, as he fell in a water hole and sank. They brought the bows, lances, shields, and tricks of the party.
They told Jacob that the had met the Indians that killed old Skidmore and had learned from them that there were plenty of horses down there, and that they were on their way to kill, and steal, and that there was a large war party coming down to kill John Conner, Ketmsee, Lambshead, [of which tribe/s?] and all that they could find.
They seemed to know all about the condition of the posts and our frontier, and said that they had joined the Sioux Indians against the whites in the north. The captain commanding the party killed was Yamparico and had a black cloth coat, an undershirt, and a daguerreotype with him, and on his shield were some twenty white scalps, mostly white women. I have this shield and spear.
The two Indians that killed Skidmore went on to San Saba and stole even horses and came back in their trail to the Caddo Peaks. From here they struck due north and went to the main Comanche camp. A party of 12 men followed them and lost the trail. Then they came on to the posts and then here to see Captain Ross.
I have no doubt we will have the devil to pay, and our frontier is in the greatest danger. I hope you may succeed in your plans, as it is the only hope I have of having anything done. The Indians here and ready and willing to go against the Comanche and I think them about the best protection we have if they were managed by some white men.
A few killing scrapes will give them a distaste to these parts. Anyhow Jacob learned from the captain he killed that the place selected for winter quarters of all the wild Indians was on the main Red River, where it runs through the mountains, and that some eight or ten tribes united with the Sioux in their war.
John Conner says he ascertained from a Noconee that that is where they expect to winter. I think there would be no difficulty in finding them if an expedition were gotten up. I shall return to the Clear Fork in the morning and will a sharp lookout for any strange Indians. I will make requisition on Major Paul for a detachment of men to go out to the agency and remain there, as I think it proper to give these Government employees all the protection I can.
Respectfully, etc. J. R. BAYLOR Special Agent, Texas Indians
The Civil War
There was no drafting during the civil
war in Kansas amongst the Delaware Indians or amongst those Indians who had long
selected them as their guides. There was no bounty jumping either. All history
records that where the Delaware adopted a cause he entered into it with his
entire soul. He is ignorant of half measures. The difficulty was never in
inspiring him with enthusiasm, but in restraining him.
I feel justified by the records, based upon authentic documents, in asserting that the Delaware Indians displayed during our late civil war the highest quality of loyalty to the Federal Government by enlisting in the Army for the Union, and by rendering the most gallant and efficient service afterwards, during the entire war, and by their example and earnest appeals to their neighboring Indians of other tribes, secured at critical periods voluntary enlistments in the Union Army. Their patriotism was of the most earnest and practical kind, as portrayed in official reports.
For example, in the annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs of 1862 (p. 23) it is recited:
As an instance of
their loyalty I will mention this fact: Of 201 Delawares, between the ages of 18
and 45, 170 have volunteered and are now in the military service of the United
States. It is doubtful if any community can show a larger proportion [85%] of
volunteers than this.
Agent Johnson, in official report of the same year, bears like testimony to the loyalty and devotion of this people.
In the reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs and the Government agents during the remaining years of the war like statements are found, testifying to the continued loyalty, and as to the character of the service rendered, say: "They have distinguished themselves as faithful soldiers."
The head and assistant chiefs of the Delawares foresaw the malign cloud of secession looming up threateningly as early as January 3, 1861, pregnant with ruin and disaster to the whole country. Wherever they had influence among the Indians they used it intelligently, earnestly, and in most cases successfully, to continue in the Patriotic Oath of duty What a remarkable presience they exhibited in the following appeal to "Our Loyal Grandchildren." They seem to have "scented the battle afar off."
DELAWARE NATION, KANSAS, January 3, 1861.
To O puth la yar ho la, Muscogee Chief Warrior, and our Loyal Grandchildren:
We are much rejoiced to receive your letter by James McDaniels and David Balon. Our agent has sent it to our Great Father, the President, at Washington, and to General Hunter at Fort Leavenworth. It gives us great pleasure to hear that you are good and true friends to the President and to the Government of the United States.
We hope you will continue to be their friends. If bad men of the south ask you to go to war against the President, stop your ears, don't listen to them; they are your worst enemies, they are trying to destroy you and the country. Grandchildren, it does our hearts good; we rejoice to hear of the victory you gained over your enemies and the enemies of the Government under your brave leader, O puth la yar ho la.
Grandchildren, we are ready and willing to help you. Our brave warriors are ready to spill their blood for you, but are only waiting to hear from our Great Father at Washington. We have asked of him the privilege of going to your assistance and hope that our request will be grated. We don't wish to go to war against the wishes of our Great Father the President. We have learned that the President will soon have a large army in the Indian country to protect you; that he has ordered General Lane to march to your relief. We are confident that our Great Father is able and will protect his nice children.
Grandchildren, we pray to the "Great Spirit" to protect you and keep you out of the hands of the bad men of the south who are trying to destroy you and the Government. We have no fears as to the result of this war. The President has large armies in the field that will conquer and punish the rebels. We are proud of our Muscogee children.
JOHN CONNOR, Head Chief NE CON HI CON SAR CO XIE CHARLES JOURNEYCAKE, Assistant Chiefs.
Done in the presence of: F. JOHNSON, United States Indian Agent. ISAAC JOURNEYCAKE, United States Interpreter.
Evidence that the Delawares were endeavoring to induce the Creeks "to standby the Government" as early as October 89, 1861, is contained in the following letters, written by R. H. Carruth and by F. Johnson, United States Indian Agent, respectively.
HUMBOLDT, KANS., October 9, 1861.
SIR: A part of the Creek delegation which I took to you at Camp Lane called on me last Saturday as they were returning. They have held council with the Delawares and Shawnee and other northern Indian tribes, and waiting on me for the purpose of agreeing on a time of meeting these tribes in council. I have arranged that delegates from southern Indians be at Humboldt on the 17th of November, and have promised them to write the Shawnees to meet them on the 24th of November.
My reason for appointing their council with the northern tribes one week later is this: I did not know to what points you might require the southern delegates to be taken, and I inclose a letter to the Shawnees, leaving a blank for the lace, which you can fill out and send if you approve of the arrangements.
I sent a letter to the Seminole chiefs instructing them to and the letters addressed them by Captain Pike and other Confederate officers to you by their delegation.
I also wrote to the superintendent of a mission station to confer with the other superintendent -- the schools are 100 miles apart -- and report to Colonel Coffin. This was done at his request, he being absent at the time the Indians were at Humboldt. I instructed him to employ an Indian runner to come here immediately should any important change have taken place among the Indians since the delegation left the Creek Nation. The Delawares wrote the Creeks, urging them to stand by the Government, and they also had a letter from _____, branch, central superintendent. The delegations will be here later that I had wished, , but owing to the time the Creeks were among the Shawnees, and it would have been impossible until their return home with their report to induce those tribes to send up others, the time could not be fixed earlier.
I have not the slightest doubt of their coming unless force be used by the rebels to prevent, which I think hardly probable, and in which case we are to be informed of everything the secession influence might do to prevent the Union manifesting itself.
I can not believe John Ross, of the Cherokees, has done what the papers state. If so, all there is left to do is to kindle civil war over his head. Hope that what I have done may meet your approval, I remain, your obedient servant.
R. H. CARRUTH. Hon. J. H. Lane Commanding K Brigade
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, January 21, 1862.
SIR: Your communication to this Office of the 31st December last has been received, inclosing a letter which was brought to you by a messenger from the south as you were holding a council with the Delaware chiefs of your agency, and which letter you desired to be laid before the President of the United States. Your communication also represented the readiness of the Delawares and other western tribes to engage in military service on the part of the Government and against the rebel states.
With reference to all these subjects. you will an opportunity of conferring with the Commissioner of Indian Affairs (who has perused your letter in person) at Leavenworth city , for which destination he left on Sunday last on public business.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, CHARLES E. MIX Acting Commissioner. F. JOHNSON, Esq.. U.. Indian Agent, Delaware Agency, Kansas
The following is from Richard C. Adam's, The Delaware Indians: A Brief History (1906)
James Swannuck, James Saghundai, James Conner, Delaware Charley, Wetowka, Crane, Solon Everett, and Bob Skirkett, all Delaware Indians, accompanied Fremont in 1853 across the Rocky Mountains and assisted him in redeeming the State of California from the Mexicans. In Mr. John Charle's Fremont's work, Memoirs of My Life, are many accounts of the adventures these Delaware Indians met on those occasions. In speaking of his experience at Monterey, Mr. Fremont says:
The Delawares kept an unfailing watch from every peak or lofty crag and with the instruction and long-practiced vigilance, clear-sightedness, and quick discernment of their race, gave notice of every movement in all directions. One morning at sunrise everything indicated a near impending assault by overwhelming numbers. Fremont addressed his people, who assured him with one voice that they were ready to meet death with him on the spot rather than surrender. The Delawares prepared themselves at once for their last battle. Their arrayed themselves in their full finery, put their red war paint on themselves and on their horses, and with all their weapons in order, made the circuit of the camp, singing their war and death songs, their chargers prancing in apparent sympathy with their riders in the solemn but exultant enthusiasm of the occasion; but the enemy shrunk from the crisis. He further says that they were resourceful, brave, excellent marksmen, truthful, unwearied in watchfulness when in a hostile country, as they often were; unselfish, and displaying repeatedly a self-abnegation worthy of the highest praise, excepting in one direction, thus alluded to by General Fremont in his Memoirs:
They (the Delawares) regarded our journey as a kind of warpath, and no matter what kind of a path he is upon, a Delaware is always ready to take a scalp when he is in a country where there are strange Indians. They were skillful and intrepid scouts, and when in a camp duly watchful and vigilant ever. Notwithstanding that they faithfully served Fremont on all occasions, and never for one moment faltered in the duties that were required of them, when their work was performed they received their discharge, the United States Government denied the responsibility of fulfilling the contract that General Fremont made with them, and, as far as I know, to this day neither they nor their heirs have received the money or land warrants to which they were entitled.
Following is a Certificate signed by General Fremont and two letters from the acting Commissioner relating thereto:
This will certify that that the following-named Delawares, James Swanuck, James Saghundai, James Conner, Delaware Charley, Wetowka, Crane, Solomon Everett, and Bob Skirkett were with me on an exploring expedition to California in the year 1846; that, being on the shore of Lake Hamath about the middle of May of that year, I received directions from the United States Government which changed the exploring expedition into one of a military character, to which the services of the above mentioned men were valuable and necessary To induce them to undertake the new service which would be required of them, I promised that I would endeavor to obtain for them the additional compensation of $2 a day each which I offered on the behalf of the United States. They accepted the offer and enlisted accordingly in the service of the United States. This engagement was afterwards renewed in July when the war broke out openly in California, when they enlisted for the war. From that time (15th May) until about the 20th of November there were actually and efficiently engaged in the service, performing their duties with remarkable courage and fidelity, by which they entitled themselves to all the favors and considerations which has been granted or may be granted to the men who served in the Mexican War. Among the rest they are entitled to land warrants.
J. C. FREMONT, NEW YORK, 56 West Ninth Street. March 21, 1857.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS
Washington, June 10, 1886. SIR: I am in receipt of a letter from the United States Indian agent at Quapaw Agency Ind. T., in which he states that Mr. George Washington, one of ten Delaware Indians who accompanied Gen. John C. Fremont in his California expedition in 1853-54, has in his possession an agreement in writing which reads as follows:
WESTPORT, Mo., September 16, 1853 [p. 43] "I have this day made an agreement through Jim Secondi[ne] by which ten Delaware hunters, good men, are to accompany me on my journey to California and back to this country. The ten Delawares are to furnish their own animals and are each to be paid $2 per day. They are to provide themselves with good animals, and if any of their animals should die upon the road I am to pay them for the loss. They will of course be furnished by me with ammunition, and the saddles which are furnished at my own cost. "JOHN C. FREMONT."
The agent states that Mr. Washington has also a copy of a statement bearing the signature of ten delawares, detailing the amount due each for work and loss of animals, and requests to be informed as to whether or not the United States has ever assumed the said indebtedness incurred by General Fremont, and if so, how to proceed to procure the same for the claimants. I will thank you to inform me if the Government is in any way liable for the above indebtedness; and if so, what steps are necessary to be taken by the said Indians to secure the payment of their claims.
Very respectfully, A. B. UPSHAW, Acting Commissioner. The THIRD AUDITOR OF THE TREASURY.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS
Washington, July 9, 1886.
SIR: Referring to your letter, dated June 1, relative to ten Delaware Indians who claim that there are moneys due them for services rendered as scouts for General Fremont on his California expedition in 1853-54, I have to advise you that the honorable Secretary of War, be letter dated the 29th ultimo, states that the United States is not responsible for this indebtedness, as General Fremont conducted as his own expense an exploring party to the Pacific coast.
Very respectfully, A. B. UPSHAW, Acting Commissioner. J. V. SUMMERS, United States Indian Agent, Quapaw Agency, Ind. T
Not only did the Delaware Indians accompany Fremont in the California and Mexican war, but a number volunteered and served under Col. W. S. Harney for a term of six months from the 1st of January, 1846. When discharged they believed themselves entitled to compensation for forage and other extras, as they only received their monthly pay and subsist their own horses' they also believed that they were entitled to the proper quota of land due them as bounty. Their request was referred to the Secretary of War, but as far as I have not been able to ascertain whether or not they received satisfactory results. Some of the Delawares engaged themselves as trappers, hunters, and scouts for the , and penetrated the far northwest; and today some of their descendants are living in Idaho, Montana, and Oregon, affiliated with the Crows, Nez Perce, and other northwestern tribes. The number now living in the far northwest is estimated at 35. There are also some Delaware Indians at the present time in Canada. descendants of those who allied with the British interests, and some in the last few years have been found in the State of Mexico who speak the same language of the tribe, the principal body of Indians so reside in the Cherokee Nation.
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