Ratified Treaties between the Cherokee and United States (1778-1850)

The following list of treaties is composed of treaties which have names (as referenced in other treaties, letters, etc).

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Slavery in the Cherokee Nation

Slavery was an institution that existed on the Cherokee Nation both before and after Removal. Both John Ross (1790-1866) and Major Ridge (1771-1839) were wealthy plantation owners.

References to slavery can be found in the Cherokee Phoenix:

  • A notice was placed in the February, 1829 edition of the Cherokee Phoenix by one Joseph Wafford: “Is hereby given that some time in the last part of October last a black man came to my house, who says his name is MANUEL, and that he belongs to a man on Duck River in Tennessee, by the name of JOSEPH M’CONNELL…The owner is desired to prove his property, pay charges and take him away” (Vol. 1, No. 46).
  • An ad was placed in the June, 1829 issue of the Cherokee Phoenix for the sale of a slave: “Will be sold to the highest bidder, on the 17th July next, at New Echota, one negro man, named PETER, Invied on as the property of Edward Hicks, to satisfy a bond given by said E. Hicks to the National Treasurer” (Vol. 2, No. 12).

The Cherokee Nation abolished slavery in 1863. At this time, about 2% of Cherokee owned slaves.

The Cherokee Phoenix

The first issue of the newspaper was printed on February 21, 1828 in New Echota, Cherokee Nation. It published all articles in both English and Cherokee (using the 86 character Cherokee syllabary developed by Sequoyah). This made it both the 1st newspaper published by a Native American tribe and the 1st newspaper to print articles in a Native American language. A much more complete history of the paper can be found here.

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