tv Lectures in History Colonial Diplomacy the Iroquois Confederacy CSPAN November 24, 2019 12:00am-12:56am EST
films can watch archival our weeklyppears on series real america. saturday at 10:00 p.m. and sunday at 4:00 p.m. eastern here on american history tv. announcer: next, professor timothy shannon teaches a class on colonial era diplomatic ties between the iroquois confederacy and european settlers. he describes what treaty meetings would have looked like, the role of interpreters, and the importance of exchanging gifts. timothy: welcome, everyone. today, we are going to talk about diplomacy on the early american frontier between native american peoples and european
peoples. we will talk about some of the customs and protocols that governed that style of diplomacy and the objectives of both native american peoples and colonial peoples brought to those meetings. i have a painting from 1903 that is depicting one such treaty conference that went on on the frontier of new york in the mohawk valley. you did a reading today that featured a fellow named william johnson, not a lot of contemporary american students of history know much about him, but he was a very interesting figure in the 18th century. an irish immigrant, settled on the mohawk frontier of upstate new york in 1740, and became very friendly with mohawk indians, who were his neighbors. ultimately, grained a great deal of influence among them and was appointed by the british crown to serve as the agent to the iroquois nation. this painter in the early 20th century wanted to depict one of
these treaties that johnson convened with native americans. think about the reading you did for today. it is providing you with a mental image of that. it was at johnson hall, which was this georgian mansion he built on the mohawk frontier that still stands today. if you are in upstate new york between albany and syracuse, new york, you can visit this site and visit another one of his homes that predated this both of which are preserved as historic sites in new york. a really interesting story about how europeans and native americans came together on the frontier, not to fight, but actually just to talk about their differences and try to come to some kind of accommodation when they did have conflict. i want to switch from upstate new york to pennsylvania right now.
if you were to travel east of gettysburg, or maybe 1.5 hours on route 30 to the town of lancaster, pennsylvania, i'm sure some of you are familiar with lancaster. in 1744, lancaster was just this tiny little frontier community that was really on the edge of settlement in pennsylvania. but in june of 1744, a group of 250 iroquois indians arrived in lancaster and were carrying arms, bows, and arrows in tomahawks. this would cause panic among the folks that would live in this tiny frontier town. this was the quaker colony of pennsylvania. there was not even a militia to call out in fear of an attack of the iroquois. they were not there to make war, they were there for a treaty conference.
they were called by the governor of pennsylvania. they marched through town, their leader singing a song of greeting to the people of lancaster. when they got to the edge of town, they encamped. they built a camp and stayed in lancaster for about the next 2.5 weeks negotiating not only with the colony of pennsylvania, but also with delegations from the colonies of maryland and virginia, as well. this became known as the treaty of lancaster of 1744, and it was one of the more famous of these meetings that took place on the frontier between colonial government and native american peoples. benjamin franklin at the time of the lancaster treaty was working -- was occurring was working as a printer in philadelphia. he was anxious to hear news of what was going on in lancaster. he wrote to his agent in london, fellow who sent him books, and
he sent things to his agent in london to sell. he wrote to him and included this description of what was going on in lancaster. "a treaty is now holding in lancaster county, a place 60 miles west of this city, between the governments of virginia, maryland, and pennsylvania, on one side, and the united five nations of indians on the other. i will send you an account of it when printed, as the method of doing business with those barbarians may perhaps afford you some amusement." that is a pretty condescending statement for franklin to be making of this. certainly it reflects many of the attitudes of his contemporaries, that these were savage people living in the forest. when he calls them barbarians, he is sneering about it to his agent in london. there is also an element of fascination and interest. this method of doing business, franklin wants to tell his london agent how to do this
business on the american frontier of engaging in diplomacy with native americans. in that phrase, this method of doing business, is a very important fact to realize. for our purposes today. when europeans came to colonial america and met with native americans, it happened on native american terms. in order to ensure a good trade, in order to ensure peace, they had to get together and conduct diplomacy with native american people. the protocols and customs and language and metaphors that govern that diplomacy were not european in origin, they were native american in origin. this is a testimony to the amount of power that native american people have. that europeans had to learn to conduct business on their turf, to do it by their method. franklin, when he publishes the treaty of lancaster, sends 200
copies off to his agent in london because he thinks they might solve this. he thinks people in london might be interested in learning about this. about learning about native american people in this context of diplomacy. historians, when they talk about diplomacy between native americans and europeans in the colonial era often use a metaphor that i like, that i will share with you today, which is the middle ground. they use diplomatic negotiations reflected a middle ground between european power and interests in early america and native american power and interests. the fellow who pioneered the use of this metaphor is a historian named richard white. some of you may have heard of him before. he was writing about the french interactions with algonquian peoples living in the great lake frontiers. there was this middle ground
where neither the french nor the native americans had the upper hand in terms of military power or strength. each side wanted something from the other for a trade. each side had to learn to negotiate somehow with the others. these people were culturally different, strangers, there was a language divide. white, when he wrote about the middle ground, described it not only as this geographic territory, the modern-day midwest where french and native peoples were coming together, but this metaphorical middle ground where each side is feeling out the other, trying to comprehend its worldview and develop some means of communicating back across the cultural divide. we will use that metaphor today and apply it primarily to the english colonies in british north america as they dealt with native american peoples and sought this diplomatic middle ground to negotiate with them.
so, let's look at this middle ground, especially as it developed in the context of ritual, how diplomatic rituals emerged that helped europeans and indians comprehend each other. there were two primary ritual complexes that europeans learned to use when the engaged with native americans. one was algonquian in origin, think of billing which group we talked about and the many native peoples who were connected to that language group, especially in the great lakes region. and the other was iroquoian, related to peoples of upstate new york, modern-day ontario, thespoke languages from an stock. the calumet ceremony was associated with algonquian native american peoples from the
great lakes region. calumet was a pipe that native americans used. native americans grew tobacco before europeans showed up, they smoked tobacco for all sorts of reasons. one of the reasons they smoked tobacco was for ritualistic purposes, a way of greeting strangers, a way of offering hospitality, a way of initiating and closing diplomatic negotiations with each other. when you did it for that purpose, when you smoked tobacco for diplomatic reasons, you smoked it out of this long stemmed pipe that was called a calumet pipe. this is not a pipe that a native american would be carrying around just for his daily smoking. this is a pipe made specifically for diplomatic purposes with eagle feathers attached to it. bowl made out of a soft, red stone found in minnesota that the indians could carve into the shape for pipe bowls. we have seen this image before when we were talking about the
fur trade. this indian here is smoking a calumet pipe. they are distinguished by their very long stems. when people of algonquian descent got together -- we know tobacco smoke is something that is very unpleasant and you don't want to be stuck somewhere where people are smoking, but their notion was that tobacco cleared the air of bad thoughts. we think of something as tobacco smoke is very unpleasant and you don't want to be somewhere where someone is smoking. the tobacco smoked carried away ill feelings, worries, concerns, and cleared the minds of people who were coming together to engage in negotiations. this is a french illustration of what the calumet ceremony looked like. it is an interesting image, like that you could read like you might read a modern-day comic
book strip, except you need to read it in this order. i have added numbers so you can understand the action that is taking place here. number one, the savage village. there is a native american community, then there is another group of native americans traveling by canoe downriver and want to pass through the territory of these folks. but they need to do so in a way to make clear that they are arriving as friends, not here to make war, not here as aggressors. and so, the canoe goes ahead of the others with the calumet of peace. you see these three indians in a canoe. this object here is the calumet. they are carrying it before them. a canoe comes up out from the village to greet them. they see what is going on and they see the calumet pipes.
to offer a greeting. the calumet is carried before the new arrivals, the visitors, as a sign of peace, and visitors come out of the village to greet them, there is ritualistic dancing, then they are admitted into the village and ultimately they smoke the calumet as a way of proving their friendly intentions, and the locals provide hospitality and they can go on with their business. that is how the calumet ceremony worked. this has entered the american idiom of english through the phrase smoking the peace pipe. we have all heard about smoking the peace pipe as a way of making amends, making peace. that is the origin of that phrase in english, from the calumet ceremony. the other primary ritual complex that was used in native american and european diplomacy was iroquoian in origin.
it was related to those native americans who showed up at the treaty of lancaster in 1774. the iroquois league, the five nations as franklin called them, in that letter he wrote to them in london, this is a map to kind of give you a very brief introduction into the iroquois league, or confederacy. at the time of colonization, when the dutch showed up, there were five nations in the iroquois league. from east to west, the mohawks, the senecas, etc. they occupied a territory roughly commenced or he with modern-day upstate new york, the city of buffalo. in the early 18th century, a sixth nation migrated northward from north carolina and joined the iroquois league. sometimes, you will hear references to the five nations
and sometimes, the six nations. even though they came from north carolina, they spoke a similar language and had a similar culture. that is one of the reasons why they came up and settled in this region. they settled between northeastern pennsylvania and central new york. there were a very perl full indian confederacy. the iroquois had similar power, like the chesapeake, and the -- in this very strategic territory between french canada, ontario, and dutch new netherland and ultimately english new york. they occupied this very strategic territory. diplomacy with the iroquois became very important to the french, dutch, and english to ur trade.their fi when the europeans engaged in this diplomacy with the iroquois, they had to learn
something known as the condolence ceremony. i will tell you a little bit about how the condolence ceremony worked. when the iroquois league got together, usually on an annual basis to renew friendship and alliance between the member nations, they began their negotiations with each other by engaging in a condolence ceremony, whereby each nation offered its condolences to the other nations for losses they had suffered since the last time they met. somebody important had died, or perhaps there had been warfare with outsiders, casualties, and so forth. the opening message was condolence to assuage the grief of those people who were suffering losses since the last time they met. this was expressed by exchanging wampum beads and belts. wampums were beads made out of
marring shells found on the shores of new island and new england. they were important to the iroquois, because they held a lot of spiritual power. the exchange became the symbol of condolence. you began diplomatic negotiations by exchanging beads on strings. they represented, in this very metaphorical language, they talked about giving three strings of wampum to dry the tears, open the ears, and clear the throats of those who are grieving so that they could now see, hear, and speak clearly again. this was a symbolic way of recognizing the burdens that people brought with them to these diplomatic negotiations and the wampum was meant to clear away all the bad thoughts.
doing the service that tobacco was doing in the calumet ceremony. so you could now see, speak, hear clearly and engage openly in these diplomatic negotiations. when wampum beads strung together on strands of leather, you could make it wampum belt. this is what one may have looked like. this is acrylic wampum that i purchased from some folks who used modern methods to re-create this for people involved in the reenacting community and things like that. it is a really good approximation of what the size of these looked like, and especially their color. they were made out of two colors, white and purple. they represented the marine shells they came from. those contrasting colors could then be woven into designs as nd belts.
we will see some of these a little later. a lot of these designs like you see here had these geometric patterns that emphasize linking. a linking of arms, diamonds linked at the corners. that is meant to show unity and strength. purple or black wampum often was used to symbolize war or mourning. white was to symbolize peace and well-being. there is a color symbolism located with these beads. they became devices, material devices that were used to engage in the condolence ceremony, you can pass it around. if you were a european diplomat going out to meet native americans, you better bring your wampum. if you don't have wampum, your message is meaningless. this is an example of how the native american customs and
rituals are something that europeans had to learn to use and manipulate if they were going to treat with the indians and get their objectives. another type of gift that was exchanged in the context of the condolence ceremony were black strouds. we talked about stroud's in the trade.rade -- in the fur strouds were navy blue, produced in england, and were a big part of the textile exchange. they became black to cover the grades of the deceased, to allow relatives to put away the grief of those who had died and again, clear the ears, eyes, and throats. do we have any questions about the condolence ceremony or the calumet ceremony? yes. >> how did the british learn how to make it?
did they trade with other indian nations for the wampum, or did they learn how to make it themselves? timothy: many manufactured -- native americans manufactured wampum before europeans showed up, but when european showed up they also bring tools that make it much easier to manufacture wampum. it tends to get much smaller, because they are using are in tools to grind and then drill holes from the beads. native americans continue to make wampum, but europeans also become very interested in purchasing it. it becomes commodified in early new netherland it's supposedly used as money when the economy is just developing, and by the 18th century, with a wampum being mass-produced for the purpose of engaging in this type of diplomacy. the belts themselves were generally made by native
american women. 250 indians arrived for the treaty of lancaster, approximately half of adult males, the other half were women and children. when the negotiations were going on, many of the women are spending time creating the wampum belts that will be exchanged in the course of the proceedings. it is a native american art. contact with europeans changes the production losses in value, but it is still very much a native american process. we will talk a little bit about the treaty conferences that so fascinated franklin. in our modern view, if i say to you treaty, you probably think of a document. you think about the treaty of versailles that ended world war i, or the peace of paris of
1783, which ended the american revolution. we tend to think of treaties us texts that are the result of negotiations, and europeans who treated with native americans had, generally, specific objectives to talk about issues that have come up that need to be resolved. matters of war and peace, we need to convince native allies to go to war with us, we need to convince some enemies to make peace with us, or they might have issues about the fur trade, we need to initiate contact with these people so we can expand our fur trade into that region. by the mid-18th century, a big part of these treaty negotiations involved the repatriation of captives, europeans trying to get native americans who they have been warring with to return captives who have been taken.
these are the finite objectives that europeans often brought to the negotiating process. ideally, a treaty would produce a written document that put all this down in writing in the end the europeans could archive it and refer to it the next time they had an issue with the natives. the native american perspective was different. for the native americans, the treaty was about process as much as it was about objectives. it mattered equally as much, maybe even more so, that you observe the proper rituals and customs and engage in this treaties than any specific objective that was reached or agreement written down at the end. the iroquois, when they wrote about or talked about treaty making, used a couple of very interesting metaphors. one was polishing the chain. they talked about their alliance with english colonies as the covenant chain alliance. a chain has many links, together
they have strength. they talked about the need to periodically brighten the chain or polish the chain so it would not rust and break. you periodically have to get together with us and reenact these rituals so we know that you remain a person of good will and a person willing to treat us as equals. they also use another metaphor of clearing the path. exchanging contact between native and colonial communities occurred along a path. and that path would become overgrown and have rambles, trees, all sorts of obstacles, and therefore periodically, you needed to get together and clear the path so that trade and communication remains open between both sides. this tension developed in the colonial era between native peoples who sought treaty making is having these relations with these outsiders.
europeans who didn't have a lot of patience for this, they tended to want to treat only one there was a specific issue, they didn't like the amount of time these treaty negotiations took or the expense that was often involved with them. a tug-of-war develops between colonial governments, trying to minimize the time and expense of these treaty conferences, and native american peoples saying, you need to show us proper respect, that you care about us as allies and trading partners, and so forth. those treaty negotiations take place throughout the 17th and 18th century, and they become increasingly frequent over the course of the colonial era as colonists get worn down by the
indians' demand that colonists treat them according to these terms. they get a little more savvy about how to engage in this business and go about doing it. what did a treaty conference look like? in lancaster, in 1744, the indians are in town for about 2.5 weeks, so 250 indians in town, delegations from three colonial governments, what is going on? what makes it a treaty conference? the primary activity is making speeches. each side giving speeches to the other side to express discontent, to express potential resolutions to conflicts, perhaps make proposals about the way they want to change their alliance or something like that.
this speechmaking occurred around a council, usually convened in public, both native americans and europeans attached the notion of propriety to having public meetings. that there would be other observers. meetings that did not happen in public, what we might call back room deals, they call it happening in the bushes. meetings that happen in the bushes have the connotation of people pulling the strings behind the scenes, perhaps acting out of selfish interests than representing the interests of their people. both sides liked the idea of convening these treaties in these towns like lancaster, some convened in philadelphia, some in albany, some in boston. generally speaking, native americans preferred they occur in frontier towns, they were easier for them to get to and
they were not as threatened by communicable diseases. smallpox was a threat for indians who traveled to those regions. eastern pennsylvania, lancaster, pennsylvania, albany, new york were small frontier towns that became center to this diplomacy. this is an image from a map produced in 1765 that shows the treaty conference happening of the ohio frontier after a british military expedition into the region. it is not a perfect image, but it's one to approximate what happened in 1744. there was in a public building large enough to hold the size of groups they attract. you have a group of officials in this case, british military officers sitting around on one side, and a group of males on
-- a group of indian males on the other side. this indian is making a speech at the council fire and has a wampum belt he is holding in his hand as he makes his speech. if you look around the scene, you see the solidiers. what i love about this images you see women in this image. you have an indian woman here with a child, another indian woman here with a child. and another one right here. they are all kind of part of the scene. they are all listening to what is going on in the proceedings. the proceedings have legitimacy, because they are out in the open. you also have, worth noting, a colonial secretary serving the purpose of stenographer, taking
down notes, reporting what is going on. which raises a very interesting question, if these were people of native american and european descent and they did not speak each other's languages, how did they actually communicate with each other? there are two primary ways through which that happens. i want to spend some time now talking about that. the first is interpreters. it is very important to have interpreters who could relate the substance of the speech given by one side to the other side. over the history of these meetings, we see several different types of people emerge as being kind of the typical interpreters. missionaries. we know missionaries made an effort to learn native american languages. missionaries often served as
interpreters at these treaty conferences. they are converts, native american christians who have learned perhaps french, dutch, perhaps english, well enough to serve as interpreters. you might also have fur traders serving as interpreters and native american women that fur traders had married who picked up language by virtue of their engagement with native american communities, native american women who learned some european language from their husband, or children with biracial heritage, the product of these unions. growing up with a foot in each culture would be capable of doing this. other people who might serve as interpreters are captives. native americans are europeans who had spent time, sometimes
unwillingly, among the other side as children. children absorb language very quickly. sometimes, the interpreters were people who spent time willingly or unwillingly among the folks on the other side. on the european side, indian children had been placed in schools in an effort to educate them in the english language or catechized them. on the indian side it would be young people who had been taken captive during wars and brought up in indian families who would serve this role. at the treaty of lancaster, the most important interpreter was conrad weiser. have any of you ever heard of conrad weiser before?
he was an early american with a fascinating story to him. if you drive east of gettysburg and you going to him and country, you will find the conrad weiser homestead, a state historic site you can visit today. he was born in germany and came over in 1710 to new york and moved up into the mohawk valley region to find land. he lived in a pretty insular german-speaking community that did not want to be bothered by folks. as a young boy, conrad weiser was taken by his father and placed in a local mohawk community. the german immigrants wanted somebody to develop the language skills to communicate with them.
as a boy, he went to live with the mohawks and learned the mohawk language. as an adult, he moved into pennsylvania, he came down the susquehanna valley and became a fur trader. because of his language skills, he became an interpreter for the colony of pennsylvania, also served as an interpreter for the colony of virginia, he had a pretty good reputation. the native americans liked him, they spoke of him as having two sides. they considered him to be fairly upright, unlike a lot of interpreters they did not trust because they might have been of a different ethnicity. weiser had a good reputation not only for his ability to understand native linkages, but interpret and teach the protocol of diplomatic exchange.
a new york scottish official who migrated to new york at about the same time as conrad weiser, in the 1720's, wrote a history of the iroquois. he was very much interested in the iroquois league. the book is still read today because it is probably the first history of the iroquois written in the english language. this is what he had to say about native americans. like many of his peers, he was fascinated by native american speech but did not speak the language himself. he had to rely on interpreters. he said "i suspect our interpreters may not have done justice to the indians' eloquence, for the indians may strongly move our passions by their lively images.
i have heard an old indian sachem speak with much by the city and elocution, so that the speaker pleased and moved the auditors with the manner of delivering his discourse." he has witnessed indian speakers were able to move their audience even though the audience did not understand what they were saying. an indian speaker his audience, wearing togas, around the public forum. this notion that europeans had that there was this innate gift to communicate through speech without necessarily relying on words to do so. what does that mean? gesture, the posture of their -- the cadence of their voice. their posture. all the things were evidence of the indians' eloquence. check out this image. this image is based on the image we saw earlier with the map in the ohio country.
this image was done for the american artist benjamin west, who i already mentioned to you, living in london in the 1760's. he was being published and did this image for the publication. i want to point out a few things to you about this. here is our indian speaker. he is pointing with his finger. he is at the council fire, he has a wampum belt in his hand, we have these other indian fellow sitting around him. then, look at his audience. this is colonel henry bouquet, marched out to the ohio country. this is the secretary who was writing things down. these are officers or listening. look at the tension, everyone of these listeners, even among the native american listeners, they
are enraptured by this fellow speaking. the one thing we do not see in this image is the interpreter. what is the artist trying to tell you? he is telling you this native american simply by the sheer force of his presence and eloquence is moving these people. the guy, with his hand over his heart. this guy concentrating, living -- leaning on the shoulder of the fellow in front of him. this guy, writing it all down. but clearly, they are being moved. people like benjamin franklin, thomas jefferson, the enlightenment thinkers of the 18th century, believed native american societies were literally younger than european societies, therefore, that of americans were closer to the origin of creation and time than europeans.
what does the creation story tell us? up until the tower of babel, everyone spoke the same language. to punish humanity, they divided that into different languages. all human languages descended from a common root. while native americans were younger than europeans come -- europeans, and there languages were literally closer to that common root than european languages. people like franklin and jefferson believed he said study native american languages for this purpose, it will help you understand the origins of human languages around the globe. they also believed that very first natural language was still hardwired into us. and so, if you heard it being spoken, even though you cannot comprehend mentally, the words, it would still move you. that is what this image is telling you. this fascination of native american oratory that even though you can't understand the
words, the gestures, the cadence, the movement of the speaker, there is this emotional wall it is packing that is being communicated. the speech is a source of fascination and interest among these folks. i can pause for a minute and answer any questions. i want to talk about another type of exchange that went on at these treaty conferences, the exchange of objects. ways in which europeans and indians communicated without necessarily making speeches or sharing words. rituals of exchange. we already mentioned wampum belts. i wanted to go back a little bit and talk about them in terms of their design. you did a reading for today based on a treaty conference that william johnson was having in niagara and in detroit. if you paid attention, you saw
whenever johnson or indian contemporaries were making a speech, the points of the speech were punctuated by wampum strings or belts. these became devices not just for offering condolences and initiating treaty proceedings, but also devices to make your meaning clear to an audience that perhaps did not speak the same language as you do. generally speaking, the larger the belt, the bigger the point you were making. that is when you read the johnson document, you see references to a large belt, a belt of this many strings versus a belt of that many strings. the wampum created its own message. this is a wampum belt that has human figures that are linking
arms, holding hands, they look like paper cutout dolls. that image of linkage, whether it is human figures are a chain or geometric design like diamonds are rectangles, is meant to emphasize a certain parity, volitional alliance, it emphasizes not hierarchy, but a design that says we are all legal partners in this particular alliance. wampum worked that way. another great image of a wampum belt. this is a black wampum belt. purple or black symbolizes war. the white has been used to form the image of a hatchet. one of the other very common
idioms of american english that arises out of this era of diplomacy is taking up the hatchet or bury the hatchet. this is where the symbolism come from, it is meant to symbolize taking up the hatchet and going to war with me against the common enemy, or bury the hatchet and the new trade. wampum belts could be accepted, they could be, the other side may say no thanks, we will think about that before we accept that belt. in some cases, they were rejected, kicked away or thrown into the dust, a way of expressing extreme anger, not only to refuse the belt, but abuse it in some physical way. other types of exchange that went on here, food, drink, and
tobacco were important to how treaty negotiations began and ended. when indians traveled to a colonial town like lancaster or eastern pennsylvania for treaty conferences, they expected to be treated well by the colonial hosts. that would involve oftentimes toasts when they arrived, a feast at some point during the course of the proceeding, and provisions for their families while they were encamped on the edge of town and all the stuff was going down. that is why the stuff was so expensive for colonial government. they are always on the clock, let's get this thing moving. the indians are always like, well, we like it here, aren't we going to have a feast tonight? that was the indians' way of drawing out the proceedings and
making it more expensive for the colonial governor, making it more pliable for him to hear their complaints and bend to their will. there are thoughts that rum was flowing frilly, they were using alcohol to get what they want, alcohol was part of the gifting that went on for most of these. but for the most part, with the emphasis of things being open and in the public, there was not abuse. it was more commonly used in the context of hospitality rituals, offering a toast in the beginning, in the end. at the end of the lancaster treaty in 1744, the governor of pennsylvania is wrapping things up and calls for a toast to the indians. he says the first toast, he has these cordial glasses brought out and has rum poured out in a very small amount.
the next they come of a comeback -- the next day they come back and the indians make their closing speech and the governor calls for a toast again, only this time, they asked them to bring out big wineglasses filled up with rum. he said those glasses you had yesterday were our french glasses. now, we are giving you the english classes. meeting the cheap were french, they don't provide you the hospitality that we do. this toast symbolizes our much superior regard for you. that is a way alcohol might be used in this context. another way connections were made were the exchange of names. the indians would give names to colonial governors that would admit them into these alliances. and those names would pass from one colonial governor to the next. the governor of new york was
corlair. after that, every governor was named that. in pennsylvania, the governor was named corey leer -- in pennsylvania, the governor was named onus. it was actually a pun for william penn's name. it meant 10 like pen in your hand. onus meant feather, quill. they were saying his name in our language. every subsequent colonial government of pennsylvania was known as onus in the negotiations. in maryland, the maryland delegation in 1744 during the lancaster treaty, they are given the name tocarry hogan, the honored place in between. between the government of
pennsylvania and the government of virginia. of course, when these names happen, there is an expectation there would be presents offered in response, so they would host a feast for the indians in exchange for this name. it's all about the reciprocity there has to be learned. conrad weiser, at one point, during the treaty of lancaster, system with the colonial delegates that are about to have dinner in the courthouse with the indians and says we have to go over etiquette issues here, guys, and tell them the proper interact with these native american dinner guest they are going to be having. that kind of emphasis on not just talking to the indians, but also learning to engage with them in their social way is very important.
let's wrap up here by talking a little bit about the outcome of these treaties, what kind of artifacts they produce. so, the colonial secretary would be jotting down notes. if an agreement was reached especially when it came to land, the land session, native americans would have their names written out by the secretary and then they would write the sort of pictographs next to their names representing, usually clan totems, to chief of a particular nation. that was a big objective of the colonial governors when they convened, to get indians to sign a document. the signature on the document means they agreed to this land session, the agreed to this points we addressed. then in some cases, not all, but in some cases, those treaties were published. colonial printers like benjamin
franklin published these. franklin published this one in 1745. a year after the treaty of lancaster. these were not bestsellers of their day. i am not going to sit here and tell you people are waiting for the next indian treaty to come out. but they did not circulate. oftentimes, editors give gloss as to what was going on to try to explain the rituals that were described here. so, they did become kind of a guide for people who were interested in understanding the rules and protocols of native american diplomacy. in the case of the treaty of lancaster, which did circulate in london, the chief iroquois speaker gave some very famous speeches at the treaty of lancaster. so famous that in 1755 a london novelist was writing a romance novel, he had a character falling in love with an english girl and he had been dead for
five years when he did that. but, his figure had become familiar enough to readers in london that he could serve his purpose in a romance novel. so, the native americans themselves, of course, there was this distrust of pen and ink work, 20 to the secretary, saying we know the guy writing that stuff down is not necessarily serving our interest. they knew when it came to land purchases and whatnot that often times what was written down did not reflect what they thought had actually occurred at the treaty conference. wampum belts became the equivalent of the printed treaty or manuscript treaty for the native americans. wampum belts were kept, could be brought back out in subsequent treaties, used by native
american speakers to remind europeans of what they agreed to in previous treaties, and into the 19th century, they were kept as a way of trying to preserve the history of these diplomatic relationships for the native americans. this had their origins in the colonial period. today, the unique nation of native americans in the united states, the fact that they had this kind of semi-sovereign status that separates them from the state in which they lived is a legacy of this treaty making that occurred in the colonial era and revolutionary era. it was recognition that indians operated as separate sovereign nations who met in these diplomatic situations to
negotiate and conduct their own affairs in their best interest. when native americans today claim a special relationship with the federal government today that is distinct from relationships with the state government, they are basing those claims on treaties that were signed in the 19th, 18th centuries. the federal government is interested in treaty signed after 1776. but you get the idea. treaty making is at the core of native claims to sovereignty to this day in the united states. any questions before we wrap up? alright, well, we are going to end there. thank you all for coming. we will see you on monday. we will start talking about captivity.
>> you can watch lectures in history every weekend on american history tv. we take you inside college classrooms to learn about topics ranging from the american revolution to 9/11. that saturday at 8:00 p.m. and midnight eastern on c-span3. holden andrs charles ach -- and zach said he talk about their book. former viceze the president's political tactics and appeal to working-class white americans, which they can p or to president donald trump. the center for the study of democracy at st. mary's college of maryland hosted this event.