48. Trade and Intercourse Act, June 30, 1834
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63 preservation of peace and tranquillity among them. The instigators of such unwarrantable proceedings, as well as the chief actors in every instance of ascertained outrage, are justly considered responsible to the Government for the transgression, and are invariably required to be given up to its authority to answer for the offences. It is difficult to restrain such aggressions, growing out of ancient feuds, prompted by an unchecked spirit of rapine, and a thirst for warlike distinction, and, particularly, when probable impunity furnishes an additional incentive. To prevent outrage is, however, far better than to punish the offenders; nor should the expense attendant on the remedy to be found in the employment of a sufficient body of mounted rangers preclude its exercise. A display of military force, and the certainty of speedy punishment, can alone prevent a ready resort to rapine and bloodshed on the part of those who recognize no restraint on plunder, no bounds to the grati- fication of revenge. On the whole, it may be matter of serious doubt whether, even with the fostering care and assured protection of the United States, the preservation and perpetuity of the Indian race are at all attainable, under the form of government and rude civil regulations subsisting among them. These were perhaps well enough suited to their condition, when hunting was their only employment, and war gave birth to their strongest excitements. The unrestrained authority of their chiefs, and the irresponsible exercise of power, are of the simplest elements of despotic rule; while the absence of the meum and tuum in the general community of possessions, which is the grand conservative principle of the social state, is a perpetual operating cause of the vis inertiae of savage life. The stimulus of physical exertion and intellectual exercise, contained in this powerful principle, of which the Indian is almost entirely void, may not unjustly be considered the parent of all improvements, not merely in the arts, but in the profitable direction of labor among civilized nations. Among them it is the source of plenty; with the Indians, the absence of it is the cause of want, and consequently of decrease of numbers . Nor can proper notions of the social system be successfully inculcated, nor its bene fits be rightly appreciated, so as to overcome the habits and prejudices incident to savage birth, and consequent associations of maturer years, except by the institution of separate and secure rights in the relations of property and person. It is therefore suggested, whether the formation of a code of laws on this basis, to be submitted for their adoption, together with certain modifications of the existing political system among them, may not be of very salutary effect, especially as co-operating with the influences derivable from the education of their youth, and the introduction of the doctrines of the christian religion; all centering in one grand object— the substitution of the social for the savage state. . . . [House Executive Document no. 2, 22d Cong., 2d sess., serial 233, p. 163.] 48. Trade and Intercourse Act June 30, 1834 The final codification of the trade and intercourse acts was passed by Congress in 1834. It offered no sharp break with the past but embodied, sometimes in modified form, the principles that had developed through the preceding decades. The House Committee on Indian Affairs, which drew up the bill, relied heavily on a report submitted in 1829 by Lewis Cass and William Clark. An Act to regulate trade and intercourse with the Indian tribes, and to preserve peace on the frontiers. Be it enacted . . . , That all that part of the United States west of the Mississippi, and not within the states of Missouri and Louisiana, or the territory of Arkansas, and also, that part of the United States east of the Mississippi river, and not within any state to which the Indian title has not been extinguished, for the purposes of this act, be taken and deemed to be the Indian country. Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That no 64 persons shall be permitted to trade with any of the Indians (in the Indian country) without a license therefor from a superintendent of Indian affairs, or Indian agent, or subagent , which license shall be issued for a term not exceeding two years for the tribes east of the Mississippi, and not exceeding three years for the tribes west of that river. And the person applying for such license shall give...