George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Marinus Willett, 14 July 1793

From Marinus Willett

New York 14th July 1793


I beg youll excuse me for Intruding on you a few thoughts. If the accounts from the southard published in our papers are true—It appears that the Lower Creeks are the people who are at present hostile to Georgia—(and the Tallasee King who is a weak man of little influence and easily perswaded to any thing)1—That this should be the case is not a little misterious—Those Indians have prety uniformly been rather in the Interest of the Georgians— Bernard the Georgia Interpreter has considerable Influence among them2—The leading men in Georgia hurried on by their avidity to get possession of the Creeks lands, I am of opinion will stick at nothing to accomplish their views—Be not therefore displeased with me Sir, while from a principal of real humanity I intreat that all representations from that Quarter may be throughly Investigated strictly sifted into and well dijested before hostile measures are adopted against those tribes.3 I have the honor to be with sentiments of the most exalted esteem Sir your most obedient humble Servant

Marinus Willett

ALS, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters. The postal stamps on the cover read “N. York July 14” and “FREE.”

1For newspaper reports of Indian unrest in Georgia, see the New-York Daily Gazette, 12 June, 8 July 1793. The Creek chief known as Tallassee King (Tame King, Hopithle Micco; d. 1813) was among the Creeks who signed the 1790 Treaty of New York with the United States (Kappler, Indian Treaties description begins Charles J. Kappler, ed. Indian Affairs. Laws and Treaties. 5 vols. Washington, D.C., 1903–41. description ends , 2:25–29).

2Timothy Barnard (1745–1820) traded with the Creek Indians prior to the Revolutionary War and married a Uchee (Yuchi) woman c.1780. At some point he established a trading post on the Flint River in present-day Macon County, Georgia. He served as an interpreter and agent for both U.S. and Georgia officials until his death.

3On Willet’s role in negotiating the 1790 Treaty of New York that established a boundary between the United States and the Creek Indians, see Henry Knox to GW, 15 Feb. 1790, n.5. For recent concerns by the Creek Indians, see the speech to GW from the Creek Nation of 3 July. For the administration’s desire to prevent an Indian war in the South, see Cabinet Opinion on Georgia and the Creek Indians, 29 May 1793. For a more aggressive position, see South Carolina governor William Moultrie’s letter to GW of 11 July 1793.

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