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Benjamin Franklin
1706 - 1790

Franklin wrote the following after a large group of innocent Indians were massacred because of the actions of others from another Tribe:

"If an Indian injures me, does it follow that I may revenge that Injury on all Indians?

"It is well known that Indians are of different Tribes, Nations and Languages, as well as the White People.

"In Europe, if the French, who are White People, should injure the Dutch, are they to revenge it on the English, because they too are White People?

"The only Crime of these poor Wretches seems to have been, that they had a reddish brown Skin, and black Hair; and some People of that Sort, it seems, had murdered some of our Relations.

"If it be right to kill Men for such a Reason, then, should any Man, with a freckled Face and red Hair, kill a Wife or Child of mine, it would be right for me to revenge it, by killing all the freckled red-haired Men, Women and Children, I could afterwards any where meet with."


 
Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7
Chapter 8 | Chapter 9 | Chapter 10 | Chapter 11 | Chapter 12 | Chapter 13 |Chapter 14 
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Chapter 6

We Were Not the Savages - Flawed Peace and the Treaty of 1749

By the end of 1726, most Miíkmaq Districts had, without being properly informed about the consequences, ratified the Treaty of 1725. The assertion that they had signed the treaty without first being properly informed is supported by the military actions they took afterwards to protect their territory from British appropriation. Being sensible people, it makes no sense that they would fight so hard to keep something they had given away willingly. It can be further concluded from their military actions that, if the treatyís complex terminology had been interpreted in their own language so they could have realized that it would deprive their proud Nation of its self-respect, dignity and territorial rights, they would not have signed. The fact that the Miíkmaq were uninformed about the full meaning of the treaty was enough to assure that the peace would not last, but the British made its failure more certain by continuing to treat the Miíkmaq with insincerity and contempt.

A perfect example of English insincerity is found in the minutes of a Council meeting held at Annapolis on December 9, 1725, which detail the dishonourable way the Council disposed of criminal charges against three French prisoners from Quebec who had been charged with murdering and robbing two Miíkmaq. Lt.-Governor Doucett relayed the following information about the case to the councillors in their capacity as judges:

That three French strangers had come from Quebec seeking refuge, and later, safe passage out of the Province. That they were not in possession of a Quebec Governorís Passport. That they had killed and robbed two Indians. The Board did not believe that they had come as refugees, but rather as spies, in order to discover the state of the Town and Garrison, or to entice the desertion of the Troops.

Whereupon, in order to ascertain the truth of their designs and statements, the Board judged it necessary that they should be put into custody and examined separately. The Lt. Governor informed the Board that he had already made them prisoners, it was then agreed that they should be examined.

The three men, Paul Francois Dupont de Veillein, Saint Joyly de Pardeithan and Alexander Poupart de Babour, were then brought separately before the Board to give testimony. The first gentleman testified: that he was a former Officer of the French Army, that he had done time in the Bastille, for he knew not what. And, as further punishment, by order of the authorities, was transported out of France to Quebec. The second Gentleman related that he also was a former Officer in the French Army: that he had been apprehended by the authorities in France for fighting an illegal

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