The Treaty of Kahnawake of 1760
This transcript is taken from The Sir William Johnson Papers, Volume XIII, pages 163-166.
Written by Darren Bonaparte
[Montreal, September 16, 1760]
1. Br. Warry.2
We are glad to meet you and thank you for your friendly Advice [of]3 sent us from Oswego, [we have complied] that we should keep out of the Way; We have [acted] paid a due Regard [to it] thereto and thank the Great Spirit above who allows us to meet together this Day in so Friendly a Manner.
2. Brn. of ye. Nats.
I[t] [gives] us great Pleasure of your having resolved at Swegatchy to accompany our Brother Warry. as far as here. Your coming along was very necessary and of mutual Service
We therefore most sincerely [thank] return you our hearty Thanks for it.
3. Br. Wy.
We heard and took to heart the good Words you spoke to us yesterday; We thank you most heartily for [them] renewing and strengthning the old Covenant Chain [of] which before this War subsisted between us, and we in ye. Name of every Nation here prest. assure you [to] that we will hold fast [of] the Same, for ever hereafter.
4. Br. Wy.
We are greatly oblidged to you for opening the Road from this to [Albany] your Country we on our parts assure you to keep it clear of any Obstacle & use it in a friendly Manner —
5. Br. Wy.
You desired us to [see] deliver up your People who [may be] are still among us — [We] As you have now settled all matters wth. us & we are become firm Friends. We [are] who are present here as Representatives of 8 Nats. do assure you that what you desired shall be fully agreed to as soon as possible.
6. Br. Wy.
We also agreeable to your Desire yesterday will burry the french hatchet we have made Use of, in the bottomless Pit, never to be Seen more by us or our Posterity. —
7. Brethn. of ye. 5 Nats.
[You] In Return to your Belt of Yesterday Whereby you told us that your Br. Wy. had finished every thing with us you on your part had something to say wch. was that as there had been during this War a Division & Disunion between us; and [thereby] desired us to reunite & be firm Friends as heretofore, We hereby assure all here present that we with pleasure agree to your friendly Proposal and reunite as formerly.
8. Br. Wy. With Regard to the String you spoke by yesterday of Returning as soon as possible to your homes and of your leaving two Persons behind to transact Business in your Absence and at the same time told us to send some of every Nation [to] with you to Albany in order to try ye. goodness of the Road, we are ready whenever You go to accompany You.
9. Br. W.
As we have now made a firm Peace wth. the Engsh. & ye. 6 Nats. we shall endeavour all in our Powr. to keep it inviolably. There is one thing Br. wch. we understand you have great Plenty of, which is Liqour, as that is the only thing wch. can turn our heads and prove fatal to us, we who now represent 8 Nats. here present entreat you in the most earnest Manner not to suffer any of your People to sell or give any to [any] us, as it
a large Belt.
10. With another large Belt they made the same Request to the 6 Nats. not to bring any Liquor to their Country
11. Br. Wy.
Every thing now settled between us in ye. most friendly Manner wch. we rejoice at; We have only to acquaint you that our Young Men are soon going upon the hunt and perhaps may happen to come to [some] of your Posts, that you will give [a] Strict charge to the Officers of every Post along [here] not to suffer any Person to dispose of any Liquor to any of our People that may come there as it might be productive of Disputes & ill Consequences between them & your People wch. might shake the [Chain of] Friendship now so happily [concluded] strengthned and wch. by all Means [you] I will endeavour to avoid.
a black Belt
12. Br. Wy.
It is proper for you to know the Way our Affairs were managed while under the Care of the french wch. is that Smiths &ca. were allowed to work for Us upon that Governmts. Expence.
13. Br. Wy.
We are heartily thankfull to the Genl. for his Goodness in allowing our Priests to remain & instruct us as usual, and we shall endeavour to make good Use of it, as [the] He is now the head of all here, & had subdued our former Superiors, who maintained our Priests, they must now suffer & cannot subsist without your Assistance; Therefore we beg you will not be worse than our former Friends the french. And also beg that you will regulate Trade so that we may not be imposed upon by ye. People our new [Allies] Brs. a
Then arose Ad’yadarony chief of ye. Warrs. of Caghnawy. and addressed himself to Sr. Wm. in the Followg. Manner
14. Br. W.
The Sachms. having finished the Good Work of Peace wch. is agreeable to all our young Men, I shall offer something in behalf of them, wch. I beg you to take Notice of. — Should any of the young People thro’ Imprudence or Liquor drop or make Use of any foolish or rash Expresss. to [the] You or those you leave behind, we beg you will not take Notice of them, but of us [who] now present who are their chiefs.
A Warrrs. Belt
15. Br. Wy.
As we are now linked together in the Chain of Friendship; we the Warrrs. have one Request more to make wch. is that if Mr. Purthuit4 alias Ohowa late Interpr. to Onontio should apply to you to be further employed that Way, you will not hear to it, but let him go with his former Master over the great Lake and let us have on of your own People to act as Interpr.
gave a string of Wm.
here ended the Meeting.
[M] Septr. 16th. 1760–
As every Matter is now settled to our mutual Satisfaction we have on Request to make to You who have now the Possession of this Country, That as we have according to your Desire kept out of the Way [and been Neuter] of your Army, You will allow us the peaceable Possession of ye. Spot of Ground we live now upon, and in case we should remove from it, to reserve to us as our own.
a large black Belt
- In New York Historical Society. Jelles Fonda Journal, but in hand of Daniel Claus.
- Brother Warrighiyagey. Therefore addressed to Sir William.
- Words italicized and in brackets are crossed out in manuscript.
- Louis Perthuis.
Next in series: Was Akwesasne’s “Burnt Church” a Sacrifice to Peace?
By Darren Bonaparte, historian and author of The Wampum Chronicles. Reprinted with permission.
Darren Bonaparte is a cultural historian from the Akwesasne First Nation. He is a frequent lecturer at schools, universities, museums, and historical sites in the United States and Canada. He has written four books, several articles, and the libretto for the McGill Chamber Orchestra’s Aboriginal Visions and Voices. Darren is a former chief of the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne. He is the creator of The Wampum Chronicles and historical advisor to film and television. He currently serves as the Director of the Tribal Historic Preservation Office of the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe.