"In the field of Americana few aspects of the subject compare in interest and importance with that of the relationship between the whites and the Indians, and the treaties which were the written manifestation of that relationship. These treaties, often the result of the white man's greed for lands and gold are, in effect, the fundamental documents of our national domain" (Eberstadt).
The earliest treaty in this group, proclaimed 10 January 1810, is with the Kickapoo. Among other important treaties is that of 23 February 1829 with the Chippeway, Menomonie and Winnebago tribes, fixing the boundaries of tribes in Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota 4 April 1832, in which the Creeks ceded all their lands east of the Mississippi in return for lands in the West (Georgia and Alabama Creeks refused to sign); the Treaty of Green Bay, 13 March 1833, with the Menominee; the Treaty of Chicago, 21 February 1835, with the United Nation of Chippewa, Ottowa, and Potawatomie Indians; the Treaty of Fort Gibson, present-day Oklahoma, 12 April 1834, mapping out and guaranteeing seven million acres to the Cherokees “forever”; the famous Treaty of Chicago, 21 February 1835, establishing reservations and regarding lands in Indiana and Michigan; the treaty with the Confederated Tribes of Sac and the Fox Indians, 27 February 1837, to which George Catlin was a witness; the Treaty of Council Bluffs (22 July 1846) in which the United Chippewa, Ottawa, and Potawatomi tribes ceded all their lands in Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, etc. for a tract in Kansas; the Treaty of Camp Holmes, 16 May 1838, the Comanche and Witchetaw, and their Associated Bands or Tribes of Indians, freeing the lands of the Great Prairie west of Cross Timber of hunting and trapping, and guarantying the right of passage along the Santa Fe Trail; the Treaty of Detroit, 2 July 1838, with States and the Saginaw Tribe of the Chippewa Nation, concluded at Detroit by Commissioner Henry R. Schoolcraft; the Treaty of Fort Gibson, 2 March 1839, with the Creek, providing reparations for the losses suffered by the Creek Nation in its forced emigration west of the Mississippi; the Treaty of Council Bluffs, 22 July 1846, with the Pottowautomi Indians, uniting the Chippewa, Ottawa, Potawatomi of the Prairie, Potawatomi of the Wabash and Potawatomi of Indiana into the Potawatomi Nation and ceding to the United States all their lands in Iowa, Missouri, and Indiana in exchange for a tract in the Kansas country; the treaty with the Winnebagos (23 March 1861), proclaimed by Abraham Lincoln and probably his first Indian treaty; the Treaty of Fort Wise (5 December 1861), the first Indian treaty in Colorado, witnessed by “Jeb” Stuart and proclaimed by Lincoln; the treaty with the Kickapoo, 28 May 1863, arranging for the survey of the Indian Reservation and the privilege of purchase in favor of the Atchison & Pike’s Peak Railroad Company, building “westerly in the direction of the gold mines in Colorado Territory”; the treaty with the Choctaw and Chickasaw Indians (10 July 1866), taking land, obtaining “rights of way,” and making the Superintendent of Indian Affairs “Governor of the Territory of Oklahoma”; the important treaty with the Cherokee Nation (11 August 1866) granting amnesty to the Cherokees, who had made a treaty with the Confederacy in 1861, but who had repudiated it in 1863; the treaty with the Sissiton and Warpeton Bands of Dakota and Sioux Indians (2 May 1867), in which these bands disavowed participation in the Sioux Outbreak of 1862 and were given a “permanent” reservation along the Cheyenne River; and many others.
A complete short-title listing of these treaties is available upon request from the Department of Books and Manuscripts.
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