INDIAN OUTRAGE - 1847
The last Official Gazette contains a proclamation from His Excellency the Governor General, offering a reward of £50 for the arrest of a man named Carlisle Hammond, who recently committed a gross outrage upon an Indian woman in the Township of Alnwick, Newcastle District.
It appears that Hammond and two accomplices went to the house in which the woman resided, at a time when the Indians were absent, and having drank freely of a quantity of whisky, which they had taken along with them, they proceeded to accomplish their purpose. On the return of the Indians, application was made to the magistrates to have the guilty parties arrested, and warrants were issued for that purpose. The two accomplices were soon secured, but by some means or another, the principal actor in the scene managed to effect his escape.
This part of the business was exceedingly dissatisfactory to the Indians, and at the examination which succeeded the arrest of Hammond’s accomplices, John Sunday, one of he chiefs, delivered the following oration, which, although defective in composition, contains several undeniable facts. It cannot be denied that the evils to which Indians are now habitually inclined are copied from their more highly favoured white brethren. Civilization has curbed the fierce spirit of war, which they formerly so fondly cherished, but it has entailed upon them innumerable vices, of which in their natural wildness they were entirely ignorant. Notwithstanding all this, we have never heard of an outrage committed by an Indian on a white female, and the manner in which this is alluded to in the following address, shows how much they value this excellent trait in their character.
When the examination was concluded, John Sunday arose and said: -
“GENTLEMEN, -- I wish I can understand all your talk, so to tell you somewhat I know. I can’t understand much your talk, but I will say few words.
“Long time ago, our forefathers make agreement with British Government to be friends, and not to do one another any hurt. The promise to live like brothers. Indian promise not to do white man any harm and white man promise not to do Indian any hurt. Indian not forget that promise. But how has white man do? You all say that Indian very wicked, but when did you ever know Indian in this country to do like white man do. He come to our house, and abuse Indian woman, when no Indian there, and then he escape without no punish. Has any you ever known Indian man to act so, like that white man. We not forget our promise made to the British Government, to do you no hurt. Indian often see white woman in woods alone, then he might say this good chance for me to do like white man do. But he no do that.
“When I a wicked man, I often see white woman on road in the woods. I meet her, and only say good morning, and go on. I might do like the white man, but I not.
Since white man come to our country, we use him well. Has white man use us well! Where do Indian go to get whisky to make white man drunk, and then abuse women? What you do if Indian act so like white man! I want you to open your eyes. You let this go by, and not do just, and I will tell you what Indian will do next time drunken white man come among us. Indian will take tomahawk, and he will tomahawk white man, and then you will take Indian to hang. This is what will be next. I want you to open your eyes to this great evil, before it is too late.
“This is all I have to say.”
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