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Memorial of the Ladies of Steubenville, Ohio (1830)

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21st CONGRESS, [Rep. No. 209.] HO.OF REPS.

1st Session


Against the Forcible removal of the Indians without the limits of the
United States

FEBRUARY 15, 1830
Read:- ordered that it lie upon the table.

To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States.

The memorial of the undersigned, residents of the state of Ohio, and town of Steubenville,


That your memorialists are deeply impressed with the belief, that the present crisis in the affairs of the Indian nations, calls loudly on all who can feel for the woes of humanity, to solicit, with earnestness, your honorable body to bestow on this subject, involving, as it does, the prosperity and happiness of more than fifty thousand of our fellow Christians, the immediate consideration demanded by its interesting nature and pressing importance.

It is readily acknowledged, that the wise and venerated founders of our country's free institutions have committed the powers of Government to those whom nature and reason declare the best fitted to exercise them; and your memorialists would sincerely deprecate any presumptuous interference on the part of their own sex with the ordinary political affairs of the country, as wholly unbecoming the character of the American females. Even in private life, we may not presume to direct the general conduct, or control the acts of those who stand in the near and guardian relations of husbands and brothers; yet all admit that there are times when duty and affection call on us to advise and persuade, as well as to cheer or console. And if we approach the public Representatives of our husbands and brothers, only in the humble character of suppliants in the cause of mercy and humanity, may we not hope that even the small voice of female sympathy will be heard?
Compared with the estimate placed on woman, and the attention paid to her on other nations, the generous and defined deference shown by all ranks and classes of men, in this country, to our sex, forms a striking contrast; and as an honorable and distinguishing trait in the American Character, has often excited the admiration of intelligent foreigners. Nor is this general kindness lightly regarded or coldly appreciated; but, with warm feelings of affection and pride, and hearts swelling with gratitude, the mothers and daughters of America bear testimony to the generous nature of their countrymen.

When, therefore, injury and oppression threaten to crush a hapless people within our borders, we, the feeblest of the feeble, appeal with confidence to those who should be representatives of national virtues as they are the depositaries of national powers, and implore them to succor the weak and unfortunate. In despite of the undoubted national right which the Indians have to the land of their forefathers, and in the face of solemn treaties, pledging the faith of the nation for their secure possession of those lands, it is intended, we are told, to force them from their native soil, to compel them to seek new homes in a distant and dreary wilderness. To you, then, as the constitutional protectors of the Indians within our territory, and as the peculiar guardians of our national character, and our counter's welfare, we solemnly and honestly appeal, to save this remnant of a much injured people from annihilation, to shield our country from the curses denounced on the cruel and ungrateful, and to shelter the American character from lasting dishonor.

And your petitioners will ever pray.

Frances Norton, Catharine Norton, Mary A. Norton, M. J. Hodge, Emily N. Page, Rachel Mason, E. Anderson, S. Ashburn, A.Wilson, S. J. Walker, E. J. Porter, A.Cushener, M. J. Kelly, Frances P. Wilson, Eliza M. Rogers, Ann Eliza Wilson, Sarah Moodey, Mary Jenkinson, Jane Wilson, Editha Veirs, Mary Veirs, Nancy Fuston, Sarah Hoghland, Nancy Laremore, Nancy Wilson, Elizabeth Sheppard, Mary C. Green, Anna Woods, Anna Dike, Margaretta Woods, Margaret Larimore, Maria E. Larimore, Sarah S. Larimore, Martha E. Leslie, Catharine Slacke, W. D. Andrews, P. Lord, Eliza S. Wilson, Sarah Wells, Rebecca R. Morse, Hetty E. Beatty, Caroline S. Craig, Elizabeth Steenrod, Elloisa Lefflen, Lucy Whipple, N. Kilgore, C. Colwell, E. Brown, M. Patterson, R. Craig, J. M. Millan, Betsey Tappan, Margaret M. Andrews, Sarah Spencer, Mary Buchannan, do., Rebecca J. Buchannan, do., Hetty Collier, Eunice Collier, Elizabeth Beatty, Jane Beatty, Sarah Means, Elizabeth Sage.

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