The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 1, July 1897 - April, 1898 Page: 41
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Expulsion of Cherokees from East Texas. 41
for a long time, looking to an agreement between them to unite the
two tribes and go to California, and take possession of a country
out of the reach of the white people. It will be remembered that
this was about ten years before the cession of California by Mexico
to the United States, and when but little was known of that coun-
try by our people. And he offered to produce and have read to
Mr. Lacy a bundle of letters on this subject, which he said was as
large as his thigh. Mr. Lacy waived the necessity of their produc-
tion, saying that the statement of Chief Bowles was sufficient on
this subject. Chief Bowles then said that he could not make an-
swer to the communication of the President without consulting
his chiefs and head men, and requested time to convene his coun-
cil. Thereupon it was agreed between them to have another meet-
ing a week or ten days later (I do not remember the exact length of
time), to give time for the council of the Cherokees to meet and act.
On the day appointed, Agent Lacy returned to the residence of
Chief Bowles, accompanied by Cordra, the interpreter, and by Dr.
Jowers and myself. We were again invited to the spring, as upon
our first visit. The grave deportment of Chief Bowles indicated
that he felt the seriousness of his position. He told Mr. Lacy that
there had been a meeting of the chiefs and head men in council;
that his young men were for war; that all who were in the council
were for war, except himself and Big Mush; that his young men
believed they could whip the whites; that he knew the whites could
ultimately whip them, but that it would cost them ten years of
bloody frontier war. He inquired of Mr. Lacy if action on the
President's demand could not be postponed until his people could
make and gather their crops. Mr. Lacy informed him that he had
no authority or discretion beyond what was said in the communica-
tion from the President. The language of Chief Bowles indicated
that he regarded this as settling the question, and that war must
ensue. He said to Mr. Lacy that he was an old man (being then
eighty-three years of age, but looking vigorous and strong), and
that in the course of nature he could not live much longer, and
that as to him it mattered but little. But he added that he felt
much solicitude for his wives (he had three) and for his children;
that if he fought, the whites would kill him; and if he refused to
fight, his own people would kill him. He said he had led his peo-
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 1, July 1897 - April, 1898, periodical, 1897/1898; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101009/m1/52/: accessed November 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.