1 Reply Latest reply on Aug 31, 2021 7:57 AM by Rebecca Collier

    What was the procedure for treaties with Native American tribes?

    Richard Wandschneider Newbie

      How many copies of the treaties were prepared in the field for signature there? Who got those copies and what was their journey to ratification and preparation for government printing and presidential signature? How many copies were printed (I’ve learned that Little and Brown printed documents before their was a government printing office)? And how and to whom were they distributed?


      I am specifically interested in the Nez Perce treaties of 1855 and 1863. We actually have the 1863 Treaty, (“Ratification Advised, April 17, 1867”; “Ratification proclaimed, April 20, 1867”). The history books say that Chief Joseph tore up his copy of the treaty (which would have had to been the 1855 Treaty). Did printed copies come back to the dozens of Indian signatories? There seems to be no ready information on how treaties moved, although scanned copies of both hand-written and printed versions are readily available. No mention of how many copies were prepared and what government offices and individuals received them. Our 1863 Treaty came from dealer William Reece, and they did not have answers to these questions.