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 North Manchester, Indiana

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Native Americans





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Source: Helm, History of Cass County (1886), pp. 260-262.

Treaties and Cessions of Land – The territorial area included within the present boundaries of Cass County, Ind., became vested in the United States by virtue of certain treaties with the Indian tribes, who were the acknowledged primitive owners of the several portions thereof, in accordance with the settled policy of the Government to receive no lands from any of the aboriginal possessors of them, except by purchase, and for a valuable consideration paid. The first of these treaties made and concluded between the parties thereto was at St. Mary’s, Ohio, on the 2d day of October, 1818, between Jonathan Jennings, Lewis Cass, and Benjamin Parke, commissioners on the part of the United States, and the principal chiefs and warriors of the Pottawattomie nation of Indians. In consideration of the cession so made, the United States agreed to ay said nation a perpetual annuity of $2,500 in silver, one-half of which to be paid at Detroit, and the other half at Chicago. … The second was held at the “Treaty Ground” on the Wabash River, nearly opposite the mouth of the Mississinewa (in the eastern part of the city of Wabash, at what was known as “Paradise Springs”), between Lewis Cass, James B. Ray, and John Tipton, commissioners of the United States, and the chiefs and warriors of the Pottawattomie tribe of Indians, concluded and signed on the 16th of October, 1826, and ratified by Congress and proclaimed by John Quincy Adams, President of the United States, February 7, 1827. By this treaty the tribe ceded to the United States the lands lying north of the boundary designated by the preceding treaty, and including the northern portion of Township 28 north, to the north line thereof.

In confirmation of the title derived through the preceding treaties with the Pottawattomies, the Miamis – who were the acknowledged holders of a prior interest in all said lands by virtue of antecedent occupancy – by a subsequent treaty between the same commissioners and themselves, made and concluded at the last named “Treaty Grounds,” on the 23d of October, 1826, “ceded to the United States all their claim to land in the State of Indiana, north and west of the Wabash River,” excepting certain reservations therein designated, which treaty was also ratified by Congress and proclaimed by the President of the United States, on the 24th of January, 1827, prior to the ratification of the aforementioned treaty with the Pottawattomies. By a further treaty with the United States, dated October 23, 1834, between William Marshall, commissioner, and the chiefs and warriors of the Miami tribe of Indians, made and concluded at the forks of the Wabash, said tribe ceded a portion of their big reserve made at the Treaty of St. Mary’s, in 1818, situated southeast of the Wabash River, and extending along said river from the mouth of the Salamony to the mouth of Eel River, “commencing on the Wabash River opposite the mouth of Eel River, running up said Wabash River eight miles; thence south two miles; thence westwardly one mile; thence south to the boundary line of said reserve; thence along said boundary line seven miles to the southwest corner; thence northerly with the western boundary line to the place of beginning.” The consideration for all the lands embraced in Article I of said treaty, was $208,000; of this sum $58,000 was to be paid within six months from the ratification of the treaty, $50,000 to be appropriated to the payment of the debts of the tribe, and the remaining $100,000 in annual installments of $10,000. This treaty, in consequence of some informality, was not ratified by Congress until December 22, 1837. …

The Miamis, by a subsequent treaty made at the forks of the Wabash, on the 6th of November, 1838, between Abel C. Pepper, commissioner on the part of the United States, and the chiefs and warriors of said tribe, ceded to the United States all that tract of land lying south of the Wabash River and included within the following bounds, to wit: “Commencing at a point on said river where the western boundary line of the Miami reserve intersects the same, near the mouth of Pipe Creek; thence south two miles; thence west one mile; thence south along said boundary line, three miles; thence east to the Mississinnewa River; thence up the said river, with the meanders thereof, to the eastern boundary line of the said Miami reserve; thence north along said eastern boundary line to the Wabash River; thence down the said last named river, with the meanders thereof, to the place of beginning.”  This treaty was ratified by Congress on the 8th day of February, 1839. The consideration was $335,680, $60,000 of which was to be paid immediately upon the ratification of the treaty, and the residue, after paying the debts of the tribe, in yearly installments of $12,568 each.

Finally the Miamis, by a treaty made and concluded at the forks of the Wabash on the 28th of November, 1840, in which the United States was represented by Samuel Milroy and Allen Hamilton, commissioners, acting unofficially, and the chiefs and warriors of their tribe, ceded “to the United States all that tract of land on the south side of the Wabash River, not heretofore ceded, and known as the ‘residue of the Big Reserve’ – being all of their remaining lands in Indiana.” Ratified June 7, 1841. The consideration for this cession was $550,000; $250,000 of which was to be appropriated to the payment of the debts of the tribe, and the residue, $300,000, to be paid in twenty yearly installments.