Petition of the Inhabitants of that part of America called Transylvania


A Petition of the Inhabitants of that part of America called Transylvania, was presented to the Convention, and read; setting forth, that they became settlers in that country in consequence of the advantageous report of their friends who explored it; and others have been allured, by the specious show of the easy terms on which the lands were to be granted, by those who styled themselves the Proprietors, have, at great expense, and many hardships, made settlements there, under an expectation of an undoubted title, which those gentlemen assured them they could make. That they are greatly alarmed at their late conduct, in advancing the terms of granting the lands from twenty to fifty shillings, sterling, and the exorbitant and increased fees of entry and surveying; and by the short period prefixed for taking up the lands even on those terms, they plainly evince an intention of rising in their demands; and that they are the more alarmed at such unjust and arbitrary proceedings, as they are lately informed, by a copy of a deed made by the Six Nations to Sir William Johnson and the Commissioners from this Colony, at Fort Stanwix, in the year 1768, for all the lands which lie on the south side of the Ohio, beginning at the mouth of Cherokee or Hogohege River, and extending up the said River to Kittaning; and as, in the said deed, the said confederate Indians declare the Cherokee River to be their true boundary with the southward Indians, they do, with great reason, doubt the validity of the purchase those Proprietors have made of the Cherokees, the only title they set up to the lands for which they demand such exorbitant sums of money. That they cannot help thinking the claim of Mr˙ Henderson and his Company as highly unjust; and as they are anxious to concur, in every respect, with their brethren of the United Colonies, in every measure for the recovery of their rights and liberties, as far as their infant settlement and remote situation will admit, they humbly expect and implore to be taken under the protection of the Convention of Virginia, of which they cannot but consider themselves a part, and either adopt such means for their relief as shall be judged most expedient, or, if it be apprehended that their case comes more properly before the Congress, that the Convention would be pleased to recommend it to their Delegates to espouse the same as the cause of this Colony.


Ordered, That the said Petition, together with the several papers relating thereto, be referred to the Committee on the state of the Colony.