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Old News Stories
Land Lottery Winners, 1832

From The Cherokee Phoenix
New Echota
Nov. 24, 1832

The Lottery

Gov. Lumpkin continues to distribute to the citizens of Georgia, by the lottery wheels, the lands and gold mines of the Cherokee nation. For two or three weeks we have been the spectators of proceedings by the citizens of Georgia, having no parallel in the history of mankind, and to our feelings of the most unnatural kind. If such a case was progressing in any other civilized country, than the North American republic, however regardless it might be of its honor, for the sake of simple justice and respect for the feelings of mankind, we believe such proceedings as we have been compelled to witness, would be promptly prohibited. The fortunate drawers (so called) of our lands have been passing and repassing single and in companies, not unlike that of John Gilpin's race to the country seat, in search of the splendid lots which the rolling wheel had pictured to their imagination. Ho, sir! Where is the nearest line to this place, what district, number, corner, lot, station, &c. are the questions forced upon us. When we see the pale faces again, they are closely viewing the marked trees and the carved posts. The gold drawers have been arriving at the gold mines, and they are compared to the great flocks of pigeons that hasten to the ground in search of food. Every lot has been viewed, and as many paths beaten, by the passing and the cross passing hunters. The rich man in Georgia is now richer–the poor Georgia orphans have drawn gold lots belonging to the oppressed Cherokees. Esq. _____ has been lucky; he has drawn a rich lot in the bottoms of the Etaw-wah and Chattahoochy rivers. Mr. ______ will be relieved from his embarrassments; he has drawn a first rate lot, and is worth hundreds of dollars. These are a few of the deeply absorbing subjects which engross the conversation of the Georgia circles, and it would seem, as thoughtlessly of the Cherokee claims to the property, as if they never existed. Such is the progress of the Georgia measures, that the drawers of our lands are now entering the nation to settle on them, at a time when they are in the possession of the aboriginal proprietors, and their right to them unrelenquished. To this invasion of our property we protest; and we state to our readers, our right to the lands money has never bought. We hold the bond and seal of the republic to protect this property. We have stricken off from our nation province after province in consideration of this promised protection.

The Indian bill of 1830, sanctioned by President Jackson himself, "provides that the existing treaties with the Indian tribes shall not be violated." The supreme court have decided that our treaties are binding on the government, and the laws of Georgia are a nullity. The superior and inferior courts of Georgia have decided that the right of soil belongs to the Cherokees, the laws of Georgia to the contrary notwithstanding. Let us, therefore, calmly wait and see if the government will not yet acquiesce in the numerous authorities we have cited, from which we claim our relief; or whether the government will choose to have their laws nullified by a state, as the easiest mode of releasing itself from enforcing them.

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