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Monument commemorating the treaty on the lawn of the Ontario County Courthouse, Canandaigua, NY

The Treaty of Canandaigua (or Konondaigua, as spelled in the treaty itself) also known as the Pickering Treaty[1] and the Calico Treaty, is a treaty signed after the American Revolutionary War between the Grand Council of the Six Nations and President George Washington representing the United States of America.

It was signed at Canandaigua, New York on November 11, 1794, by fifty sachems and war chiefs representing the Grand Council of the Six Nations of the Iroquois (Haudenosaunee) Confederacy (including the Cayuga, Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Seneca and Tuscarora tribes), and by Timothy Pickering, official agent of President George Washington.

Background of the treatyEdit

The Treaty of Canandaigua arose out of a combination of geo-political tensions. In the aftermath of its defeat in the American Revolutionary War, England was forced relinquish its land east of the Mississippi River to the United States.[2] However, England’s original rights to this territory were unclear, causing resentment among the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, to whom the land originally belonged. Moreover, some Indigenous peoples at the western frontier of the United States remained loyal to the British after the American Revolutionary War and were hostile towards the United States.[3] The United States faced resentment from the Haudenosaunee Confederacy over their acceptance of land in the Ohio Valley from England and faced the threat of another war on its western frontier.

In order to avoid War, the United States government sought to define a solid boundary on its western frontier.[3] It also recognized that peace with the Haudenosaunee Confederacy was critical at this point in case another war did break out.[3]

The United States attempted to make peace with the Haudenosaunee Confederacy with a series of conferences and treaties: the treaties of Fort Stanwix and Fort Harmar.[4] However, both treaties were considered failures by the United States government because they increased tension between the United States and the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.[4]

United States Secretary of War Henry Knox began a military operation on the western frontier in September 1790 and appointed Indian commissioner Timothy Pickering to address the Haudenosaunee Confederacy’s grievances with the United States government.[5] Pickering decided to follow a “strategy of conciliation and compromise”[3], beginning with a conference with the Seneca Nation to offer gifts and peace after the failed treaties of Fort Harmar and Fort Stanwix.[6] A series of conferences followed, where Pickering opened dialogue between the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and the United States regarding what was to become of the land that England had lost. In October 1791, Knox’s military efforts of the western frontier were failing, and he suggested enlisting the Haudenosaunee Confederacy to fight on behalf of the United States. The Haudenosaunee Confederacy, along with Pickering, were unimpressed by Knox’s request, and declined to participate in the war.[7] In 1793, the military operation on the western frontier broke out into war, escalating the situation in the Ohio Valley.[8]

Violence and geo-political tensions on the western frontier of the United States led to the beginning of a series of conferences that would eventually lead to the Treaty of Canandaigua. In June of 1794, the Haudenosaunee Confederacy proposed a conference at Buffalo Creek, in which the Haudenosaunee Confederacy rejected the Fort Harmar and Fort Stanwix treaties, resulting in the United States ceding land to the Seneca Nation.[9] Afraid that the Haudenosaunee Confederacy would join the opposition at the western frontier, the United States held the first conference for the Treaty of Canandaigua in September 1794.[10]

The official conference for the Treaty of Canandaigua began on October 18th 1794, with “more than 1,500” members of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy present.[11] Deliberations were tense at first because of discrepancies of culture beliefs on treaties. According to scholar Granville Ganter, “unlike their Anglo counterparts, the Haudenosaunee saw treaty agreements as requiring constant renewal and upkeep. The term they used was ‘brightening the chain of friendship’”.[12] Seneca leader Red Jacket played an integral role in helping Pickering overcome some of these ideological differences throughout the deliberations.[13] He “reminded Pickering that making peace requires declarations that mean one thing – peace – and mixing in language of blame or criticism simply fouls the process”.[14]

Another ideological difference between the United States and the Haudenosaunee Confederacy during deliberations for the Treaty of Canandaigua was the role of women. No United States settler women were included in the dialogue; however, Haudenosaunee women, in keeping with their significant role in tribal governance, were included. Historian Joan M. Jensen reports that Seneca women “spoke during the negotiations of the Treaty of 1794 with the United States government”. [15]

The conference began on November 11th 1794, where “fifty-nine war chiefs and sachems signed the treaty, bringing to an end Pickering’s assignment”, and the “text of the Canandaigua treaty, which comprised seven articles, was submitted to the Senate on January 2, 1795, carrying the title: 'The Six Nations, and Oneida, Tuscarora, and Stockbridge Tribes'”.[16]

Terms of the treatyEdit

 
Territory of the Seneca Nation in 1794

The treaty established peace and friendship between the United States of America and the Six Nations, and affirmed Haudenosaunee land rights in the state of New York, and the boundaries established by the Phelps and Gorham Purchase of 1788.[17]

Article One of the treaty promises “perpetual peace and friendship” between America and the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.[18] Article Two acknowledges lands belonging to the Oneida and gives them the legal right to sell the land if they so wish and Article Three legally defines the parameter of Seneca territories.[18] Article Four maintains that America must not “claim or disturb” any lands belonging to the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.[18] Article Five legally acknowledges that the road from “Fort Schlosser to Lake Erie, as far south as Buffalo Creek” belongs to the Seneca Nation.[18] Article Six promises $4500 each year to the Haudenosaunee Confederacy from America.[19] Article Seven states that if the “perpetual peace and friendship” between the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and America were to be disturbed in any way, that the conflict would be resolved peacefully by a third party.[19]

LegacyEdit

Additionally, the Quakers were involved in the aftermath of the treaty. Pickering appointed the Quakers to teach the Haudenosaunee Confederacy “European-style agriculture”.[20] The Friends’ Review, a Quaker publication, recalls “ploughs, axes, and hoes” being “liberally” supplied to the Haudenosaunee Confederacy.[21] The treaty has had a lasting legacy in asserting the sovereignty of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy; historian Robert W. Venables states that “from 1794 to the present day, the treaty has been the legal keystones of relations between the United States and the Six Nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. The treaty is at the center of any of the Six Nation’s land claims and their rights to govern their own reservations”.[22] The sovereignty and autonomy established in the treaty was also reaffirmed in the State Papers of the London Review of 1796, stating that anyone is able to “freely to pass and repass” through the territory addressed in the treaty, while recognizing the friendship established by the treaty itself.[23]

The treaty, is still actively recognized by the United States and the nations of the Haudenosaunee confederacy. However, in 1960, 10,000 acres (4,000 ha) of the Allegheny Reservation were legally condemned by eminent domain during construction of Kinzua Dam, causing relocation of 600 Seneca.

The Six Nations in New York were still receiving calico cloth as payment under the treaty,[24][25] while the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin were still receiving an annuity check of $1,800, as late as 1941, almost 150 years after the treaty took effect.[1][25]

SignatoriesEdit

The treaty was signed by fifty Sachems and War Chiefs.[17][26]

Notable signatories include:


Treaty of Canandaigua
To us it is more than a contract, more than a symbol;
to us the 1794 Treaty is a way of life.[27]

George Heron

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Houghton, Gillian (January 2003). The Oneida of Wisconsin. The Rosen Publishing Group. pp. 25–26. ISBN 978-0-8239-6432-1. Retrieved 17 August 2009.
  2. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 470.
  3. ^ a b c d Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 468. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  4. ^ a b Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 470. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  5. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 471. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  6. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 472. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  7. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 474. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  8. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 475. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  9. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 477. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  10. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 479. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  11. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 480. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  12. ^ Ganter, Granville (2009). ""Make Your Minds Perfectly Easy": Sagoyewatha and the Great Law of the Haudenosaunee". Early American Literature. 44 (1): 126.
  13. ^ Ganter, Granville (2009). ""Make Your Minds Perfectly Easy": Sagoyewatha and the Great Law of the Haudenosaunee". Early American Literature. 44 (1): 121–146. doi:10.1353/eal.0.0040. ISSN 1534-147X.
  14. ^ Ganter, Granville (2009). ""Make Your Minds Perfectly Easy": Sagoyewatha and the Great Law of the Haudenosaunee". Early American Literature. 44 (1): 121–146. doi:10.1353/eal.0.0040. ISSN 1534-147X.
  15. ^ Jensen, Joan (1977). "Native American Women and Agriculture: A Seneca Case Study". Sex Roles. 3 (5): 428.
  16. ^ Campisi, Jack; Starna, William A. (1995). "On the Road to Canandaigua: The Treaty of 1794". American Indian Quarterly. 19 (4): 484. doi:10.2307/1185560. ISSN 0095-182X. JSTOR 1185560.
  17. ^ a b c d e "Treaty of Canandaigua". Cayuga Nation ("People of the Great Swamp"). Archived from the original on 2010-07-27. Retrieved 2009-08-17.
  18. ^ a b c d Kappler, Charles J. (1904). Laws and Treaties. Washington, D.C., National Archives: 3
  19. ^ a b Kappler, Charles J. (1904). Laws and Treaties. Washington, D.C., National Archives: 4
  20. ^ Tiro, Karim M. (2006). ""We Wish to Do You Good": The Quaker Mission to the Oneida Nation, 1790-1840". Journal of the Early Republic. 26 (3): 353–376. doi:10.1353/jer.2006.0057. ISSN 1553-0620.
  21. ^ “THE SIX NATIONS." (1852): Friends' Review; a Religious, Literary and Miscellaneos Journal (1847-1894) 5, no. 31: 484
  22. ^ Venables, Robert W. (2004). "Enduring legacies: Native American treaties and contemporary controversies". Choice Reviews Online. 42 (5): 42–2989–42–2989. doi:10.5860/choice.42-2989. ISSN 0009-4978.
  23. ^ "STATE PAPERS." The European Magazine, and London Review 30, (08, 1796): 123
  24. ^ "Canandaigua Treaty of 1794". Ganondagan. Retrieved Mar 2, 2018.
  25. ^ a b "Calico payments to Indians are less this year". The Evening Independent. 8 November 1941. Retrieved 2009-08-17.
  26. ^ "Text of the Treaty". Retrieved 2015-10-01.
  27. ^ Brown, Edgar A.; edited by Jeanette Miller. "1794 Canandaigua Treaty". Ganondagan. Archived from the original on August 30, 2011. Retrieved December 5, 2012.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)

SourcesEdit

  • Laurence M. Hauptman, Conspiracy of Interests: Iroquois Dispossession and the Rise of New York State (2001).
  • Jemison, G. Peter (ed.), Schein, Anna M. (ed.) and Powless Jr., Irving (ed.). Treaty of Canandaigua 1794: 200 Years of Treaty Relations Between the Iroquois Confederacy and the United States. Clear Light Publishing, 2000. ISBN 1-57416-052-4

External linksEdit