Case 5: Signatures
Treaties and formal agreements (made on paper) between Native American tribes and foreign Governments were signed by chiefs or representatives with clan symbols, also called totems,which identified the signer(s) as members of groups much broader than tribal nations. The manuscripts in this case have been selected from several collections which contain signed, written agreements or individual autographs.
Deed in trust, from Seneca, Onondaga, and Cayuga sachems (or chiefs) to King George I; New York Secretary's Office copy, December 13, 1726.
When compared to a published version of the original deed, spelling and pictorial signature discrepancies are apparent. Published copy from: John R. Brodhead, Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the State of New-York, Albany: 1855.
Signatures from the deed to Mackinac Island; Chippewa Chiefs to George III; [Mackinac Island], May 12, 1781. From the Michigan collection.
NOTE: The Mackinac Deed was not in the original American Encounters exhibit.
Manuscript document, from Pottawatomi Chiefs to James and Francis Navarre; Detroit, June 3, 1785.
Nangüis and Voüistanaince manuscript deed to Collette Chapoton; Detroit, [Michigan], May 8, 1793. From the Michigan Collection.
Signature of a Native American Chief, given to J. Halkett at Washington, D.C. in 1822.
Miami, Potawatomi, Ojibwe, and Wyandot Chiefs to James Madison; November 13, 1811.
Signature of "Moonlight Night", [1845?].