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Jotham Meeker to Rev. Crosby

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Shawnee Mission, Jan. 10, 1834.
Br. Crosby
Sir Agreeably to your request while passing through your City in August last, I will now attempt to give you some account of our situation, prospects, &c. On arriving at Claveland Ohio from the East, I found Mrs. Meeker in a comfortable state of health, but received the intelligence that our little son, 26 days old, had been buried the day previous. At Cincinnati I purchased a set of Printing materials, paper, ink, &c. agreeably to instructions from the Board of Foreign Missions; -the object of which is to print books, &c for the different tribes of Ind in their own language within the Indian territory. We all arrived at this place in safety without having met with any accident or loss on the 2nd of October, and found our Missionary friends in this section of the Territory all well, from whom we received a hearty welcome. At the time I saw you in New York I supposed there were in the Territory some five or six hundred Ottawas, among whom we expected to settle immediately on our arrival, to open a school and commence missionary operations; - but instead of this we found their number to be between 70 and 80 including women and children, and these few opposed to missionary operations. I frequently visit them in order to keep up an intimacy and hope that their prejudices will soon yield, and we be able to obtain a footing among them. It would not be desirable to build and commence a school among so few, were it not that we expect more to arrive sometime during the next season. The reason why I wish to labor among the Ottawas particularly is that, having lived among them several years I have acquired such a knowledge of their language as to be able to converse with tolerable ease on religious subjects. I am now engaged in putting up the Press at the Shawnee Mission Station, where I expect, in a few days to commence printing. Br. McCoy is preparing a Tract which will probably be printed in several languages, Br. Evan is preparing something in Shawnee, Br. Blanchard in Delaware, and I in Ottawa Br. Simerwell who has lately

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arrived from Michigan has brought with him a Catechism of Scripture History with 30 hymns on various religious subjects in the Putawatomie language compiled by himself and Luther Rice, recently a student at Hamilton N. Y. from the Carey Station -- this too will probably be printed. Br. Samson Birch native missionary among the Choctaws has prepared for the press 70 or 80 new Choctaw hymns; he is to be here in March to attend to the printing of them
The Indians generally in this section of the Territory are much opposed to religious instruction, but notwithstanding this we usually obtain a few hearers. We have here eight Indian Church members, six of whom have been baptized within the past year; two others seem to be anxiously inquiring what they must do to be saved. Our Board have now Missionaries stationed among the Choctaws, Cherokees, Creeks, Shawnees, Delawares, and Otoes, all in this Territory in the Spring or Summer we expect to commence among the Ottawas and Putawatomies. The Omohaws and the Pawnees who live on the Platte river have requested us to commence schools among them the next spring.
The Inds. are almost constantly removing into this Territory, which includes the portion of Country bounded on the north by about the 42nd deg. of north latitude; on the East by the Missouri river and State; and the territory of Arkansas; on the south by the Red River and Spanish possessions; and on the West by the great prairies which extend to the Rocky mountains. In the said Territory there are Pawnees 5,600 Otoes 2, 440 Omohaws 2850 Kickapoos 650 Delawares 1045 Shawnees 740 Peoris, Peankeshaws & Weas 625 Kansas 1465 Osages 6425 Senekas 420 Ottawas 73 Putawatomies 175 Choctaws 15,000 Creeks 3,000 Cherokees 3,000. The soil of the country is generally rich and is covered with a heavy growth of grass. The country is almost destitute of timber except in the neighborhood of water courses game and fish are scarce, consequently the Indians are compelled to resort to cultivating their land

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