Vol. I No. 23
Wednesday, August 6, 1828
Pg.3 Col. 2a
We take much pleasure inlaying before our readers the annexed communication
from the Hon. Richard M. Johnson, of Kentucky. the interest which that
philanthropic gentleman has manifested in the cause of Indian reform, will entitle
him to the respect of good men everywhere.- His efforts have been as persevering
as they were well directed, and the happy results are beginning to be realized
to an unexpected extent.- Col. Reg.
From the Columbian Star.
CHOCTAW ACADEMY, BLUE SPRING,
June 24, 1828
Dear Sir, It is already known to you that the Choctaw Nation has located a school at this place under the name of Choctaw Academy, under superintendence of the government of the United States and the Baptist missionary society. The school consists of one hundred students from the following tribes, the Choctaws, Creeks, and Pottawattamies.
The whole establishment is supported by their own funds according to the number of scholars from each tribe.
Upon my return home, about the first of June, I was very much gratified
that there existed a most extraordinary revival of religion in this neighborhood;
about two hundred and fifty new converts have already joined the Crossing Baptist
Church, about two miles from the school. I am not able to speak with precision
as to the vast number who have joined the adjacent churches. The most
pleasing part is yet to be told, I mean the influence which this stir of religion
has had upon the students of the Choctaw Academy. Before my return home,
a number had been baptized and joined the church at the Great Crossings, and
the respectable Methodist Society at Georgetown, about four miles distant.
I had the satisfaction myself to see other students added to the Crossing Church,
a few days since, at which time fifty were baptized.- The solemn ceremony was
performed in the presence of several thousand admiring and deeply affected spectators.
The interest of the scene seemed greatly to be increased by the fact that the
native sons of the forest composed a part of the subjects for baptism; thirteen
or fourteen have joined the Baptist Society; and eight or ten are members of
the Methodist society in Georgetown. These converted students are composed
indiscriminately of the young men and boys down to nine years of age.
The son of the Creek chief Opo-tho-lo-hola, about nine years old, gave in an
experience before he was received by the church, which astonished every beholder,
and is the theme of conversation in every private circle. The experience
of many others has not been less extraordinary and interesting. the students
have their prayer meeting this night in my house, by invitation, and they have
their regular weekly prayer meetings at their school rooms and in their devotions
they would not be disparaged in comparison with their white brethren for interesting
and correct views on the subject of religion. The greatest pleasure that
I experience from a communication of these facts arises from the conviction
of my own mind, that the change is real and of divine origin,judging from the
change in their conduct, in their temper, and in their dispositions. Their
humility and meekness would do honor to any Christian community.- The Christian
may rejoice in the full confidence that God, in his providence, has smiled upon
this institution,and intends it for the useful and desirable purpose of civilizing
and Christianizing our red brethren with the United States. That the wilderness
may blossom as the rose, is the prayer of your sincere and devoted friend.
R. M. Johnson.
N. B. The following are the names of the Choctaws who have become religious, viz; Robert Jones, Samuel Garland, Lyman Collins, Anderson Perry, James Brewer, Peter King, Levi Parsons,Wm. Bryant, Samuel Worcester, Sylas D. Pitchlynn.- Samuel Birch came to the school a Baptist, and joined the Crossing church.
The following are the names of the Creeks who have become religious viz; Stephen
Grayson, Thomas H. Benton Daniel Asbury, Jesse Brown, Samuel Brown, William
Gray, Jacob Creath, Henry Clay, Thomas Henderson, Benjamin S. Chambers, Thos.
Hicks, James Berryhill, and Richard M. Johnson, son of Opo-tho-lo-hola, nine
years of age.- Samuel M'Intosh came to the school a Methodist and joined the
society in Georgetown.
R. M. J.