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Robert Simerwell to Reverend S.M. Cane

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Terre [Couper] April 11. 1833

 

Rev. Sir

 

From causes not necessary to mention I have omitted writing till the present.  I arrived on the 26 last month and found all well, since my arrival I have visited a company of our Indians who have encamped on the Wabash and who hold themselves in readiness to go west of Mississippi as soon as our Government will provide means.  they are in high spirits and very anxious to start.  they are satisfied with the Country from the reports of those of their number who have traveled in it in years past, but apprehend danger from Indians who delight in spilling blood.  and as they now believe it criminal to spill the blood of their fellow man they trust alone in the good faith of our Government for their safety.  It was last Sunday I arrived at their camp I found them seated in the open air in four rows the males formed two rows on one side and the females two on the other with a space between for the speakers who addressed the audience in turn, after salutation I was invited to unite with them in their worship and felt great freedom in prayer to God on their behalf.  I expect if God will that they and I with my family will start sometime in June west of Missouri river  This band of Potawatomies have received most of their instruction from a Kickapoo Prophet named Kin-kuck an extraordinary man whose history would be interesting to you or any other one who has the cause of the Indians at heart. but this must be the business of more leasure hours.  Suffice it to say He was a man who delighted in blood and all kinds of wickedness he says when he saw blood whether human or that of beasts & it created in him an anxiety for more which was hard to restrain, when in company with an other Indian as wicked as himself who had agreed to go and do mischief to some Ind. at a distance he says he had a vision when he awoke he told his comrade he would return giving him his reasons for so doing, he was told by his comrade it was becoming a woman to do so and not a man, but nothing like this made any impression upon him  He returned

 

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and now teaches the observence of those things he once dispised  He says he was told in the vision he mus never again taste intoxicating liquor that he must live in peace with all men that he must reform his life or he could never arrive at that inexpressible indescribable place of happiness that he says was also revealed to him,  He believes our bible to be from God and that it teaches all those things that was revealed to him, I am told if any of his people get drunk they are brought forth and whiped in public, this he says was not revealed to him, but he thinks it necessary as a restraint for those under his instruction till they are fully persuaded of its evil  He is not partial to any denomination but is willing that his people would join such as they please so far as I can learn he views himself as preparing a people to be further instructed by those who may come after him. 

 

I feel extreamly anxious the Board would look up a suitable Minister full of piety and zeal and send him to Kin kuck and his party, I think it would be a criminal neglect for us to see this man arduously engaged for the welfare of his people and not assist him in the work. believing dear sir that you will not rest till a suitable man is appointed and on his way I subscribe myself

Your obedient Servt.

Robert Simerwell

 

Rev. S. M. Cane

 

Kin-kuk in an address on the Wabash previous to his starting west inquired of some whites under the sound of his voice if the Bible forbid drunkenness and the giving of liquor to others; was answered in the affirmative.  Then said he if you believe your Bible, tell me, wat means those boards over the doors of your houses, with whiskey written on them

 

Simerwell

To S. M. Cane

April 11 1833

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