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Talk by Old Corn Tassel to Richard Caswell and Edmund Randolph
Corn Tassel, Cherokee chief
September 19, 1787
Volume 20, Pages 779-781

CHEROKEES TALK FROM OLD TESSELL TO THE GOVERNORS OF NORTH CAROLINA AND VIRGINIA.

Chotee, 19th September, 1787.

Brother:

I am now going to speak to you. I hope you will hear me. I am an old man and almost thrown away by my elder Brother; the Ground I stand on is very slippery, tho’ I still hope my elder Brother will hear me and take pity on me, as we were all made by the same

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Great Being above, we are all the Children of the same Parent, I therefore hope my elder Brother will hear me.

You have often promised me in talks that you sent me that you would do me Justice and that all the disorderly people should be moved off our Lands, but the longer we wait to see it done the farther it seems off. Your people have built houses in sight of our Towns, we don’t want to quarrel with you our elder Brother. I therefore beg that you, our elder Brother, will have your disorderly people taken off our Lands immediately as their being on our Grounds causes great uneasiness. We are very uneasy on account of a Report that is among the white people, that call themselves a new people, that Lives on French Broad & Nolachucky; they say they have treated with us for all the Lands on Little River. I now send this to let my Elder Brother know how it is, some of them gathered on French Broad and sent for us to come and treat with them, but as I was told there was a treaty to be held with us by orders of the Great men of the thirteen States, we did not go to meet them, but some of our Young men went to see what they wanted; they first wanted the Land on Little River, our young men told them that all their head men were at home, that they had no authority to treat about Lands; they then asked them Liberty for those that were then Living on the Lands to remain there till the head men of their Nation was consulted on it which our young men agreed to, since then we are told that they claim all the Lands on the Waters of Little River and have appointed men among themselves to settle their disputes on our Lands and call it their ground. But we hope you our Elder Brother will not agree to it but will have them moved off. I also beg that you will send Letters to the great Council of America and let them know how it is, that if you have no power to move them off they have and I hope they will do it.

I once more beg that our Elder Brother will take pity on us and not take our ground from us because he is stronger than we; the great being above that made us all placed us on this Land and gave it to us and it is ours, our Elder Brother in all the Treaties we ever had gave it to us also and we hope he will not think of taking it from us now.

I have sent with this Talk a string of white Beads which I hope my Elder Brother will take hold of and think of His Younger Brother who is now in trouble and looking to him for Justice.

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Given out by the old Tassell for himself and whole Nation in presence of the head men of the Upper and Lower Cherokees and interpreted by me.

JAMES McCORMICK.