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CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Wednesday, January 28, 1829
Volume 1 No. 46
Page 2 Col. 2a.

GEORGIA AND THE ABORIGINES.

 Extract from the Memorial of R. Campbell, of Savannah, presented to the Senate of Georgia:

 "Your memorialist has heard it by way of reason or excuse for extending the laws of Georgia, over the Cherokees and their country, that it is contrary to all principle, and cannot be permitted, to allow a government to exist within the territory, and independent of another government- in imperium in imperio, as it is termed- and this seems to be considered so conclusive, as to put the subject beyond question.

 Those who use it however, must shut their eyes both to history and to fact; and the most conspicuous of them contradict in this, the very principle which they insist upon in other cases.  What are these United States but an example of imperium of imperio?  Or if they are not, what becomes of all the arguments we have lately heard in support of States rights, and State sovereignty, in support of which, they seem willing to jeopardize the safety of this glorious and happy Union?

 How shall we dispose of the historical example of St. Marino, which was continued sovereign and independent within the limits of another sovereignty, for upwards of 1,300 years?

 It may indeed be alleged that this Republic was within the dominions of the Pope, who is accused of worshiping stocks and stones, and that therefore, it could not be considered as forming a proper example to be followed by a protestant and reformed people."

 In most cases where it is intended to stretch the hand of power over people, the plea of necessity is brought forward as the excuse.  So frequently indeed has it been thus adduced that this plea is now almost consecrated to tyrants- but it cannot be used in our case- our own experience proves that if we restrain our own citizens, who are borderers, from committing depredations on their Indian neighbors, all may go on harmoniously: whereas endless and interminable difficulties must arise from extending the laws so as to embrace them.

 You all know, you cannot be ignorant of the feelings of the white borderers of this State, towards their red brethren.  Indeed, the feeling I allude to is not coatined (sic) to our borderers, for you may find evidences of it, where if not powerful and general it could not be exhibited.  I mean in our laws.  They of themselves will prove, how entirely wretched and utterly hopeless would be the situation of the Indians under the control of a people induced by such feelings as they exhibit.  Your honorable body have only to turn to those passed two session ago, to find an act to prevent the evidence of an  Indian or the descendent of an Indian, not understanding the English language, from being taken in any Court of Justice in this State, however exactly he might adhere to the truth: and your memorialist is informed that but for the suggestion of an honorable Member of the Assembly, not a native of the State, the act would have made the evidence of some men, who stand high for integrity and intelligence, and hold offices of honor and profit in the State, of no more avail, in a Court of Justice, than if they had been as notorious for untruth, and they are for veracity; and, as it now stands, the value or admissibility of their testimony by this law, seems to depend not upon their being governed by morality, but upon their understanding English! and this merely in consequence of their Indian descent."