To the Chief and People of the Cherokees, Creeks, Seminoles, Chickasaws and Choctaws: I have resigned the command of the Indian Territory, and am relieved of that command. I have done this because I received, on the 11th of the month, an order to go out of your country to Fort Smith and northwestern Arkansas, there to remain and organize troops and defend that country, instead of remaining in your country, where the President had placed me; a duty which would have kept me out of your country for months. When I made treaties with you, I promised you protection by a sufficient force of white troops, and I consented to take command here to give you that protection. The President gave me all I asked. I procured infantry soldiers, enough arms, ammunition, clothing, shoes, cannon, and everything necessary for my troops. General Van Dorn, in March, took from me, at Fort Smith and Little Rock, two regiments of my infantry, six of my cannon, all of my cannon powder and many rifles, and let his soldiers take nearly all the coats, pantaloons, shirts, socks, and shoes I had procured for you. By other orders, all the rest of my infantry and all the artillery, except one company with six guns, have been taken away, and that company, with its six guns, has been ordered to Fort Smith with the last armed man from Arkansas. [He then contended that he would have been false to his charge if he had gone into Arkansas to take command of troops there.] I tried in vain to get men enough from Arkansas and Texas to prevent an invasion of the Cherokee country. You can see now, at Cantonment Davis, all the white troops I was allowed to have. You will plainly see that with them, if they had been in the Cherokee country, 2,000 or 3,000 of the enemy could at any time have driven them away. And while they were there, if I could have kept them there, what would have kept the northern troops and hostile Creeks and other Indians from coming down to the Deep fork and North fork of the Canadian, and driving out our friends from the Creek and Seminole country? . . . The President and government are not
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