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Sequoyah Research Center

William Armstrong to C.A. Harris — April 3 1837

Choctaw Agency

April 3rd 1837

C.A. Harris Esqr

Cmmr Ind Affairs


A few days since a party of emigrating Cherokees conducted by Mr. I.C. Young, (446 in number), arrived by water at Fort Coffee. The boat could go but little higher up the river; and as there was a good road from Coffee into the Cherokee country, I advised Mr. Young to land his party opposite that Post, on the Cherokee side, which he done. I also requested him to leave a correct muster roll of the party, distinguishing particularly those who had received their commutation of subsistence for a year, from those who had not, in order that there could be no mistake about paying, or subsisting those who had not been paid. Lt. Van Horn the Disbursing Agent for the Cherokees was up at Gibson. I wrote for him to come down, in the meantime before his arrival, I received from Mr. Young, the rolls, and also a small quantity of flour & bacon, which he had left after he landed the party, which I receipted to him for; and will turn over to Mr. Van Horn & take his receipt. Mr. Van Horn came down yesterday and I advised him to pay the emigrants that preferred it, their commutation of subsistence; and thereby enable them to go to work and endeavor yet to put in a crop of corn. Mr. Van Horn is now engaged in paying them off, as they prefer money; after which they will scatter through the nation amongst their friends and yet be able, I hope, to plant corn. The payment of the years’ subsistence before the emigrants reach their new country as is the case with the majority of this party, is certainly wrong, they will lay it out by the way and arrive destitute of the means of support. Conductors of parties should remain in the Indian Country until they and the disbursing agent get together and set understandingly the roll furnished by Mr. Young, I presume to be correct, and the party arrived in good order and well satisfied, but it is generally the case, that those who bring on emigrants, as soon as they reach their country, wish to leave them without a proper interview with those who are to receive them here, as there is considerable emigration from the Cherokees. I have deemed it proper to make the above remarks.


Your Obt Sevt

Wm. Armstrong

Act. Supt. West,r Terry

Updated 2.25.2010