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Chief Womankiller of the Hickory Log district
gave this speech in the council in favor of a bill the Cherokee legislature enacted to
exact the death penalty for any person who should sign away his lands and improvements
and agree to remove.

 

My Children: Permit me to call you so, as I am an old man and
have lived a long time, watching the well being of this Nation.
I love your lives, and wish our people to increase on the land of
our fathers. The bill before you is to punish wicked men, who
may arise to cede away our country contrary to the consent of
the Council. It is a good law-it will not kill the innocent but
the guilty. I feel the importance of the subject, and am glad the
law has been suggested. My companions, men of renoun, in
Council, who now sleep in the dust, spoke the same language,
and I now stand on the verge of the grave to bear witness to
their love of country. My sun of existence is now approaching
to its sitting, and my aged bones will soon be laid underground,
and I wish them laid in the bosom of this earth we have
received from our fathers who had it from the Great Being above.
When I shall sleep in forgetfulness, I hope my bones will not be
deserted by you. I do not speak this in fear of any of you, as the
evidence of your attachment to the country is proved in the bill
now before your consideration. I am told, that the Government
of the United States will spoil their treaties with us and sink
our National Council under their feet. It may be so, but it shall
not be with our consent, or by the misconduct of our people.
We hold them by the golden chain of friendship, made when our
friendship was worth a price, and if they act the tyrant and kill
us for our lands, we shall, in a state of unoffending innocence,
sleep with thousands of our departed people. My feeble limbs
will not allow me to stand longer. I can say no more, but before
I sit, allow me to tell you that I am in favor of the bill.

Picture not of Chief Womankiller

Copyright 1998 Wallace World All Rights Reserved

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