Front Page Titles (by Subject) CABINET OPINION ON SECRET INDIAN AGENT J. MSS. - The Works, vol. 7 (Correspondence 1792-1793)
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
CABINET OPINION ON SECRET INDIAN AGENT J. MSS. - Thomas Jefferson, The Works, vol. 7 (Correspondence 1792-1793) 
The Works of Thomas Jefferson, Federal Edition (New York and London, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1904-5). Vol. 7
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
CABINET OPINION ON SECRET INDIAN AGENTJ. MSS.
June 1, 1793.
That an agent be sent to the Choctaw nation, to endeavor secretly to engage them to support the Chickasaws saws in their present war with the Creeks—giving them, for that purpose, arms and ammunition sufficient; and that it be kept in view, that if we settle our differences amicably with the Creeks, we at the same time mediate effectually the peace of the Chickasaws and Choctaws; so as to rescue the former from the difficulties in which they are engaged, and the latter from those into which we may have been instrumental in engaging them.
Th. Jefferson, H. Knox.
Although I approve of the general policy of employing Indians against Indians, yet I doubt, greatly, whether it ought to be exercised under the particular existing circumstances with Spain; who may hold herself bound to take the part of the Creeks, and criminate the United States for some degree of insincerity.
My judgment balanced a considerable time on the proposed measure; but it has at length decided against it, and very materially, on the ground, that I do not think the United States can honorably or morally, or with good policy, embark the Choctaws in the war, without a determination to extricate them from the consequences, even by force. Accordingly it is proposed that, in settling our differences with the Creeks, “we mediate effectually the peace of the Chickasaws and Choctaws;” which I understand to mean, that we are to insist with the Creeks on such terms of peace for them as shall appear to us equitable; and if refused, will exert ourselves to procure them by arms. I am unwilling, all circumstances foreign and domestic considered, to embarrass the government with such an obligation.