Erie Indian Moundbuilders Tribal Nation

Victoria Taylor-True

  • archaeology, physical anthropology, paleontology, climatology, and geology

  • [ timelines ]


    • Semitic languages
      Family of Afro-Asiatic languages spoken in northern Africa and South Asia.
      No other language family has been attested in writing over a greater time span—from the late 3rd millennium BC to the present. Both traditional and some recent classifications divide the family into an eastern and western group. Until recently the sole known East Semitic language was Akkadian; now some scholars add Eblaite, the language of a cuneiform archive found at the ancient city of Ebla, with documents dating from c. 2300–2250 BC. West Semitic contains as one major subgroup Northwest Semitic, which includes Ugaritic, known from alphabetic cuneiform texts of c. 1400–1190 BC; the closely related Canaanite languages (including Moabite, Phoenician, and Ancient Hebrew); and Aramaic. Further subgrouping is controversial; traditionally, Arabic was placed in a distinct South Semitic subgroup of West Semitic, though a more recent classification puts it together with Northwest Semitic. The South Semitic languages include Epigraphic South Arabian; Modern South Arabian (or Modern South Arabic), a group of six languages spoken in eastern Yemen, southwestern Oman, and the island of Socotra; and Ethiopic. **

    • Semitic language originally spoken by the ancient Aramaeans.
      The earliest Aramaic texts are inscriptions in an alphabet of Phoenician origin found in the northern Levant dating from c. 850 to 600 BC. The period 600–200 BC saw a dramatic expansion of Aramaic, leading to the development of a standard form known as Imperial Aramaic. In later centuries, as “Standard Literary Aramaic,” it became a linguistic model. Late (or Classical) Aramaic (c. AD 200–1200) has an abundant literature, both in Syriac and in Mandaic (see Mandaeanism). With the rise of Islam, Arabic rapidly supplanted Aramaic as a vernacular in South Asia. Modern Aramaic (Neo-Aramaic) comprises West Neo-Aramaic, spoken in three villages northeast of Damascus, Syria, and East Neo-Aramaic, a group of languages spoken in scattered settlements of Jews and Christians in southeastern Turkey, northern Iraq, and northwestern Iran, and by modern Mandaeans in the Shatt Al-'Arab. Since c. 1900 persecution has forced most contemporary East Neo-Aramaic-speakers, who number several hundred thousand, into diaspora communities around the world.**

    • The Dream of a Perfect Language Part IV : A lecture presented by Umberto Eco at The Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America , November 26, 1996
    • Cohane, John Philip, KEY, THE, 1, 1969, Crown, HB. John Cohane, an amateur archaeologist, presents a case that Semitic is a universal language. This means that Semitic speaking folk must have migrated all over the world at a very early time. He offers proof in common linguistic roots in ancient (and some modern) languages. The "cognate game" is interesting in the specific, but unconvincing in the general. Cohane seems to subscribe to the Cyrus Gordon school of Defusionism in this book. Later he wrote PARADOX (1977) which argued that mankind was of extraterrestrial origin. **





    The United States was not yet a nation when it made its first treaty with the Indians.
    The year was 1778, and the treaty was made with a strategic tribe, the Delawares. The colonists and the British were at war, and in some regions the Indians held the balance of power. In the first treaty, which was signed at Fort Pitt, in return for guarantees of the Delawares' support in the war, the Revolutionary government of the United States recognized the Delaware tribe as a sovereign nation and guaranteed its territorial rights.
    In the next ninety years the United States government made more than 370 treaties with Indian nations.
    The Fort Pitt Treaty was the first of 45 treaties made with the Delawares. In those early days later, 22 treaties were made with the Cherokees, 39 with the Sioux, 47 with the Chippewas, and 47 with the Potawatomis. Between the years of 1789 and 1850 alone the United States negotiated and ratified 245 treaties. Many more, signed in good faith by the Indians, were never ratified by the United States Senate.
    About one-third of the 370 treaties were peace treaties. Two-thirds were land cessions. In the 245 ratified treaties the Indians ceded some 450 million acres in return for less than $90 million less than twenty cents an acre. Many of those treaties have been in litigation for years. None of the treaties was observed for long. Yet they remain today the legal and moral bases for Indian claims against the government. The Revolutionary War was scarcely over when the new nation made its first treaty with the Cherokees. In the Hopewell Treaty of 1785 the Cherokees acknowledged the sovereignty of the United States and gave up land that had been occupied by settlers and squatters. In return the United States agreed to recognize the strictly defined new boundaries of the Cherokee lands. Fifty years later, after more than twenty additional treaties, the Cherokees were rounded up and marched over the Trail of Tears to exile in Indian Territory.
    In the meantime scores of treaties had been made with other Indian nations. In 1794, President George Washington sent his secretary of war, Timothy Pickering, to make a treaty with the Seneca Nation of the Iroquois.
    Between 1778 and the outbreak of the Civil War the government made 45 treaties involving the Delawares.
    By 1834 the United States had cleared the eastern states of all the tribes that had been their former allies. During Andrew Jackson's presidency more than ninety treaties were concluded with the Indians. By those agreements they were compelled to surrender millions of acres and move westward beyond the Mississippi.
    The Indians protested that many of these treaties were fraudulently concluded-that the American government had set up puppets within the tribes and signed unauthorized treaties with them. One such figurehead was William McIntosh, a Creek Chief. McIntosh was a half blood. Closely identified with the whites, he organized sorties to capture fugitive black slaves and return them to their owners for bounties. When, without authority, he signed a treaty relinquishing Creek lands, he was seized and killed by his tribesmen for violating tribal law.
    In 1837, a treaty was concluded with certain members of Wisconsin's Winnebago tribe, who ceded their land to the government. The entire tribe opposed the cession, charging that unauthorized Winnebagos had been pressed to sign the treaty. The government insisted that the treaty was valid and sent troops, rounded up the Winnebagos, and removed them to Nebraska. After their fourth removal, in 1874, the three thousand who returned once again to Wisconsin were permitted to stay there, under the homestead Act of 1875. About seven hundred Winnebagos remained in Nebraska. They are now a separate tribe, a people fragmented by removal.
    The controversial New Echota Treaty of 1835 provided for the removal of the Cherokees from Georgia to Indian Territory. The treaty was signed by a handful of Cherokee selected by the council as a committee representing a few hundred people. The overwhelming majority of the Cherokees, some sixteen thousand, protested the signing as treason. They sent an authentic delegation to Washington D.C, to oppose the ratification of the treaty. The Senate ratified it by a majority of one, and the Cherokees were driven from their lands. Most were exiled to Indian Territory. Some escaped to North Carolina, where they are recognized today as a separate tribe, the Eastern Cherokees. Three years after the Cherokees moved west over the trail of Tears. The controversial Nez Perce Treaty of 1863 led to war and to the virtual destruction of the tribe. In a prior treaty, signed in 1855, the United States had confirmed the rights of the tribe to its ancestral lands and had promised to protect it from encroachment. The Nez Perces signed this treaty, but the Senate failed to ratify it or carry out its promises. Intruders, white settlers, miners, and renegades invaded the Nez Perce lands. By the time the treaty was ratified four years later, in 1869, the Nez Perces had deep suspicions about the motives of the American government. Even the most ardent supporters of the treaty among the Nez Perces denounced the government for failure to carry out its promises.
    In 1863 the government appointed a new commission to negotiate a new treaty with the Nez Perces. Four bands of the tribe refused to paticipate and seceded from the Nez Perce Nation. Young Chief Joseph, whose band had lived for generations in the Wallowa Valley ( Valley of the Winding Waters), was the leader of one of the dissenting bands. But two other chiefs, Lawyer and Big Thunder, signed the new treaty. They ceded Chief Joseph's Valley of the Winding Waters to the government but kept their homelands at Kamiah and Lapwai. When the government sent troops to enforce the treaty, Chief Joseph resisted. In the bitter war that followed, Chief Joseph lost his homeland, the Nez Perces were removed to reservations, and Chief Joseph spent most of the rest of his life in detention.
    The policy of treating with the Indians as sovereign nations lasted about ninety years. In the beginning it was a matter od expedience. Later the aim was the cession of Indian lands and protection of the official government policy on slavery. From 1787 until 1860 all treaties with the five Civilized Tribes contained a clause providing that all " fugitive slaves belonging to citizens of the United States must be restored to their owners"
    After the Civil War the United States government was free to deal with the Indians on different terms. In the Indian Appropriations Act of 1871, Congress ended the practice of treaty making with the Indians. But the act did provide that obligations of the treaties already made would remain "unimpaired and in effect." In its more than 370 treaties the United States had gained nearly a billion acres of territory....
    The Constitution of the United States provides that treaties are the supreme law of the land.
    The Medicine Creek Treaty of 1854 provided that the Indians are entitled to half of the salmon caught in the waters of the state of Washington. Litigation over this issue has been going on for years. Further, the Unites States Supreme Court has ruled that "treaties made with the Indian nations are the most sacred obligations of the Federal government." and that "if interpretation of an Indian treaty is doubtful, it should be decided according to what it meant to the Indians." Most Indians believed that their treaties were for as long as the sun shines and the rivers run. Most believed that the basis of their their treaties with non-Indians was mutuality of interest. That neither party was free to dictate the terms or ignore the terms, or to abridge or violate the terms implicit in the agreements. The more sophisticated Indians sensed that the treaties were mere scraps of paper and that nothing had halted or could halt the western expansion of the whites. They also knew that, having little power to enforce the treaties, they had to rely on the good faith of the other party. Thus enforcement has become the prerogative of only one party to the treaties, the United States government. If the government does not or will not enforce the treaties, the Indians can only seek relief in the courts. Further, while the government can access penalties or threats of penalties against the Indians for noncompliance, the Indians are powerless, save by going into court, to hold the government accountable or to seek redress. Historically the Indians have perceived that the government has disregarded its most solemn obligations and promises to them. Chief Red Cloud, the Oglala Sioux said: "They made us many promises but they never kept but one.. They promised to take OUR land, and they TOOK IT."


  •                                                Copyright © 2005-2009 Erie Indian Moundbuilders Tribal Nation. All Rights Reserved.