Treaty of Indian Springs (1825)

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The Treaty of Indian Springs, also known as the Second Treaty of Indian Springs and the Treaty with the Creeks, is a treaty concluded between the Muscogee and the United States on February 12, 1825 at what is now the Indian Springs Hotel Museum.

Muscogee Native American people traditionally from the southeastern United States

The Muscogee, also known as the Mvskoke, Creek and the Muscogee Creek Confederacy, are a related group of indigenous peoples of the Southeastern Woodlands. Mvskoke is their autonym. Their original homelands are in what now comprises southern Tennessee, all of Alabama, western Georgia and part of northern Florida.

United States federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

1825 Year

1825 (MDCCCXXV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Thursday of the Julian calendar, the 1825th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 825th year of the 2nd millennium, the 25th year of the 19th century, and the 6th year of the 1820s decade. As of the start of 1825, the Gregorian calendar was 12 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.

Contents

Background

The Muscogee and the United States had signed the First Treaty of Indian Springs in 1821, under which the former ceded their territory east of the Flint River to Georgia. In exchange, the federal government of the United States paid them $200,000 in installments and assumed their debts to the Georgian people.

The Treaty of Indian Springs, also known as the First Treaty of Indian Springs and the Treaty with the Creeks, is a treaty concluded between the Muscogee and the United States on January 8, 1821 at what is now Indian Springs State Park.

1821 Year

1821 (MDCCCXXI) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and a common year starting on Saturday of the Julian calendar, the 1821st year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 821st year of the 2nd millennium, the 21st year of the 19th century, and the 2nd year of the 1820s decade. As of the start of 1821, the Gregorian calendar was 12 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.

The act of cession is the assignment of property to another entity. In international law it commonly refers to land transferred by treaty. Ballentine's Law Dictionary defines cession as "a surrender; a giving up; a relinquishment of jurisdiction by a board in favor of another agency" In contrast with annexation, where property is forcibly given up, cession is voluntary or at least apparently so.

In December 1824, the American envoys Duncan Campbell and James Meriwether tried and failed to secure a treaty that would see the Muscogee cede their territory east of the Mississippi River to the United States.

1824 Year

1824 (MDCCCXXIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar and a leap year starting on Tuesday of the Julian calendar, the 1824th year of the Common Era (CE) and Anno Domini (AD) designations, the 824th year of the 2nd millennium, the 24th year of the 19th century, and the 5th year of the 1820s decade. As of the start of 1824, the Gregorian calendar was 12 days ahead of the Julian calendar, which remained in localized use until 1923.

James Meriwether (1789–1854) was a United States Representative and lawyer from Georgia. His father was David Meriwether and his nephew was James Archibald Meriwether.

Mississippi River largest river system in North America

The Mississippi River is the second-longest river and chief river of the second-largest drainage system on the North American continent, second only to the Hudson Bay drainage system. Its source is Lake Itasca in northern Minnesota and it flows generally south for 2,320 miles (3,730 km) to the Mississippi River Delta in the Gulf of Mexico. With its many tributaries, the Mississippi's watershed drains all or parts of 32 U.S. states and two Canadian provinces between the Rocky and Appalachian mountains. The main stem is entirely within the United States; the total drainage basin is 1,151,000 sq mi (2,980,000 km2), of which only about one percent is in Canada. The Mississippi ranks as the fourth-longest and fifteenth-largest river by discharge in the world. The river either borders or passes through the states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana.

The treaty

Muscogee cessions in Georgia under the treaty Creek Cessions of the Treaty of Indian Springs (1825).jpg
Muscogee cessions in Georgia under the treaty

The treaty that was agreed was negotiated with six chiefs of the Lower Creek, led by William McIntosh. McIntosh agreed to cede all Muscogee lands east of the Chattahoochee River, including the sacred Ocmulgee National Monument, to Georgia and Alabama, and accepted relocation west of the Mississippi River to an equivalent parcel of land along the Arkansas River. In compensation for the move to unimproved land, and to aid in obtaining supplies, the Muscogee nation would receive $200,000 paid in decreasing installments over a period of years. An additional $200,000 was paid directly to McIntosh. [1]

A tribal chief is the leader of a tribal society or chiefdom.

William McIntosh Muscogee chief

William McIntosh, also known as Taskanugi Hatke, was one of the most prominent chiefs of the Creek Nation between the turn of the nineteenth century and his execution in 1825. He was a leader of the Lower Towns, the Creek who were adapting European-American ways and tools to incorporate into their culture. He became a planter who owned slaves and also had a ferry business.

Chattahoochee River river in the USA

The Chattahoochee River forms the southern half of the Alabama and Georgia border, as well as a portion of the Florida - Georgia border. It is a tributary of the Apalachicola River, a relatively short river formed by the confluence of the Chattahoochee and Flint rivers and emptying from Florida into Apalachicola Bay in the Gulf of Mexico. The Chattahoochee River is about 430 miles (690 km) long. The Chattahoochee, Flint, and Apalachicola rivers together make up the Apalachicola–Chattahoochee–Flint River Basin. The Chattahoochee makes up the largest part of the ACF's drainage basin.

Aftermath

The United States Senate ratified the treaty on March 7 by a margin of one vote.

United States Senate Upper house of the United States Congress

The United States Senate is the upper chamber of the United States Congress, which along with the United States House of Representatives—the lower chamber—comprises the legislature of the United States. The Senate chamber is located in the north wing of the Capitol, in Washington, D.C.

The treaty was popular with Georgians, who reelected George Troup governor in the state's first popular election in 1825. It was signed by only six chiefs; the Creek National Council denounced it, ordering the execution of McIntosh and the other Muscogee signatories, as it was a capital crime to alienate tribal land. On April 29, the Upper Creek chief Menawa took 200 warriors to attack McIntosh at his plantation (McIntosh Reserve) on the Chattahoochee River in present-day Carroll County, Georgia. They killed him and two other signatories, and set fire to the house. Both his sons-in-law, Samuel and Benjamin Hawkins, Jr. were slated for execution; Samuel was hanged but Benjamin escaped and lived for another decade. [2]

George Troup American politician

George McIntosh Troup was an American politician from the U.S. state of Georgia. He served in the Georgia General Assembly, U.S. House of Representatives, and he U.S. Senate before becoming the 32nd Governor of Georgia for two terms and then returning to the U.S. Senate. A believer in expansionist Manifest Destiny policies and a supporter of native Indian removal, Troup was born to planters and supported slavery throughout his career. Later in his life, he was known as "the Hercules of states' rights."

A governor is, in most cases, a public official with the power to govern the executive branch of a non-sovereign or sub-national level of government, ranking under the head of state. In federations, governor may be the title of a politician who governs a constituent state and may be either appointed or elected. The power of the individual governor can vary dramatically between political systems, with some governors having only nominal or largely ceremonial power, while others having a complete control over the entire government.

Menawa Muscogee chief

Menawa, first called Hothlepoya, was a Muscogee (Creek) chief and military leader. He was of mixed race, with a Creek mother and a fur trader father of mostly Scots ancestry. As the Creek had a matrilineal system of descent and leadership, his status came from his mother's clan.

A delegation from the Creek National Council, led by chief Opothleyahola, traveled to Washington, D.C. with a petition to the American president John Quincy Adams to have it revoked. They negotiated the 1826 Treaty of Washington, in which the Muscogee surrendered most of the lands sought by Georgia under more generous terms, retaining a small piece of land on the Georgia-Alabama border and the Ocmulgee National Monument. They were, moreover, not required to move west.

Troup refused to recognize the new treaty, and ordered the Muscogee lands surveyed for a land lottery. He began forcibly evicting the Lower Creek. Adams threatened federal intervention, but backed down after Troup mobilized Georgia militia.

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References

  1. "Treaty of Indian Springs, 1825", New Georgia Encyclopedia Online.
  2. Michael D. Green, The Politics of Indian Removal: Creek Government and Society in Crisis, University of Nebraska Press, 1985, pp. 96-97, accessed 14 September 2011.