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Native American Presents and Gift Giving

Entries are listed chronologically.

"List of Prices for Indian Goods." February 1761. Vol. 19, (1891): 59-60.

Lists prices for trade goods in quantities of "bucks" - whether this term is used to denote money or deer is unclear.

De Peyster, Arent. "List of Indian Licenses Granted at Quebec for Michilimackinac and Places Beyond from the 13th day of April to the 4th day of June, 1778. Accounting Where the Arms and Ammunition Distend After it Arives at the post of Michilimackinac." Vol. 9, (1886): 650.

"List of Goods Given in a Present to the Ottawas of arbecroche and Kishkacon Equally Divided in the Fall of 1778." Vol. 9, (1886): 655.

Arent De Peyster to Frederick Haldimand. June 8, 1780. Vol. 10, (1888): 399-400.

Notes the Indians' requests for rum and the usefulness of the gift giving system.

"Inventory of Merchandise for Indian Presents Remaining in the King's Store, Detroit the 17th July 1781." Vol. 10, (1888): 496

Campbell, John. "Invoice of Goods for Presents to Indians." August 31, 1781. Vol. 19, (1891): 568-661.

Sent to Lieutenant Governor Sinclair at Michilimackinac.

De Peyster. "Estimate of Merchandise Wanted for Indian Presents at Detroit to 20th August 1782." Vol. 10, (1888): 632-633.

"Lt. Gov. Sinclair's Estimate of Goods Needed for Indians." September 1, 1782. Vol. 20, (1892): 51-54.

Gifts at Detroit.

De Peyster. "Estimate of Merchandise." August 21, 1782 through August 20, 1783. Vol. 11, (1888): 382-383.

Estimate of merchandise wanted by Major De Peyster, Commander of Detroit and its dependencies, for Indian presents.

Bleakley, Josiah. "Return of Indian Presents." November 7, 1782 through April 5, 1783. Vol. 11, (1888): 356-357.

Allen Maclean to Haldimand." December 24, 1782. Vol. 20, (1892): 84-86.

Explains some difficulty in delivering presents due to the weather.

Bleakley, Josiah. "Return of Indian Presents Issued at the Post of Michilimackinac by Order of Captain Daniel Robertson, 1783." Vol. 13, (1889): 73-74.

De Peyster. "Merchandise Necessary for Indians at Detroit." n.d. (1794?) Vol. 20, (1892): 271.

List of provisions needed as gifts for "savages" near Detroit.

McKee, Alexander. "Estimate of the Deficiency in the Store of the Indian Department at Michilimackinac According to captain Doyle's return of the Proceedings of a Board of Survey Held there 19 January 1793." Vol. 12, (1888): 41.

McKee. "Provisions Ordered to Detroit for Indians." February 21, 1793. Vol. 20, (1892): 313.

Items sent to Sandusky for the following spring.

La Mothe, Guill'm. "General Return of Indian Presents Remaining in, Received into and Issued from His majesty's Store at Michilimackinac between 25th June and 24th December 1793 by Guill'm La Mothe Interpreter and Store Keeper at this Post." Vol. 12, (1888): 96-97.

Doyle, William. "Requests for Indian Presents." Vol. 12, (1888): 82-84.

Doyle sends a detailed request of the supplies he would like to have at Fort Michilimackinac for Indian gifts in 1794. He also notes an upcoming peace conference, the importance of tobacco, and the good conduct of the Indians engaged in trade.

Duggan, Thomas. "Complaints of Indians." Detroit, 16 April 1794. Vol. 12, (1888): 110-111.

Duggan argues that the Indians of the Seven Nations of Canada's complaints about the supplies issued to them are "quite groundless."

"Return of Presents Remaining in the Indian Store." Detroit, 6 October 1794. Vol. 12, (1888): 146-147.

Detailed list of goods to be issues as presents for Indians.

"Indian Presents, Michilimackinac, 1794-1795." Vol. 12, (1888): 156-159.

Series of letters and returns of British officers at Fort Michilimackinac regarding the numbers and distribution of Indian presents.

"Requisition for and Survey of Indian Supplies." 1795. Vol. 12, (1888): 174-176.

Requisition for provisions and Rum for Indians at Detroit. Also, list of Michilimackinac's Indian stores.

"Statement of Equipments Commonly Given to Indians." Vol. 12, (1888): 264-266.

Explains how gifts are to be distributed to Indians. Quantity and quality of goods given to an Indian were based on his age, status, and leadership classifications.

"Account of Issues from Indian Stores." 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 495-497.
Lees, John. "Deficiencies and Damage on Indian Stores." October 17, 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 455.
James Molloy to John Lees. September 28, 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 476-477.
"Certificate of James Molloy Relative to Damaged Goods." October 10, 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 480-481.
"Statement of James Molloy Relative to Stolen Indian Goods." October 10, 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 481-482.
John Lees to James Green. October 17, 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 483-487.
"Report of Atty. General T. Sewell to Robert Prescott." December 5, 1796. Vol. 20, (1892): 492-493.

Itemized list of damaged goods sent from La Chine to Detroit and Michilimackinac, and the resulting investigation as to whether the goods were damaged during a robbery.

Mcknee, T. "Requisitions for Stores Wanting to Complete the Supply of Presents for the Different Indians Resorting at the Post of St. Joseph for the Year 1796." March 24, 1798. Vol. 20, (1892): 596-598.

Elliot, M. "Goods Recommended to be Given to the Indians." September 20, 1797. Vol. 20, (1892): 545-547.

Gifts to Massassaguas, Potawatomi , Odawa, Muncie, and Ojibwe.

"Requisition for Goods for Indian Presents for 1800 and 1801." October 2, 1798. Vol. 20, (1892): 660-663.

"Indian Presents and Stores." 1798-1799. Vol. 12, (1888): 273-294.

Supply of presents, stores, and rum for Amherstburg and St. Joseph.

Hull to Dearborn. May 15, 1807. Vol. 40, (1929): 119-122.

Hull is providing glass for windows, various farming implements, repairing metal works for the Ojibwe, Odawa, Potawatomi , Wiyandot, Shawnee, Delaware, and Muncie Indians, who are pleased that the terms of the Treaty of Greenville are being upheld.

Hull to Dearborn. July 15, 1807. Vol. 40, (1929): 155-157.

Hull defends his policy of giving gifts to the Indians, but offers to change.

"Invoices of Indian Goods, 1809, and Receipt for the Same." April 24, 1809. Vol. 36, (1908): 358-362.

Contents of Sundry boxes and kegs and a receipt signed with pictographs of chiefs of different tribes, including Walk In the Water, a Wyandot chief.

"Requisition for Indian Presents in Case of War with the United States." n.d. (1809?) Vol. 23, (1893): 70-72.

Itemized list of goods.

"Account of Sundries del'd by Robert Dickson and Co. to the Sioux Follesavonies Winebagoes - Indians at the Praire du Cheen, July 1812." Vol. 15, (1889): 91-92.

Dickson, Robert. "Statement of Expenses." Montreal, December 3, 1812. Vol. 15, (1889): 193-195.

Dickson provides the British government with a list of expenses he incurred while persuading Indian nations not to ally with the Americans.

Dickson, Robert. "Letter to the Commander in Chief of British Forces, Quebec, Dec. 23rd 1812." Vol. 15, (1889): 208-209.

Dickson lists the items and actions that will be necessary to secure the loyalty of various Indian nations.

"Indian Presents Shipped to Michilimackinac: 9 July and 10 Sept. 1814." Vol. 15, (1889): 606-608, 613-616.

Sheaffe, R. H. "Returns of Indian Gifts and Instruction Regarding their Dispersal, Sept. 1814." Vol. 15, (1889): 644-651.

"Invoice of Indian Presents, Michilimackinac 29 Oct. 1814." Vol. 15, (1889): 654-656.

"Indian Stores Required for Presents to Indians who Resort to the Post of Michilimackinac and its Dependances for the Year 1816." Jan. 2, 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 36-37.

McDonall, Robert. "Indian Stores Required for Presents for the Western Indians for the Year 1815." Jan. 3, 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 33-35.

James Finlay to Secretary Freer. Jan. 13, 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 40.

This letter concerns the stores requested by McDonell, asks if anything else is needed, and suggests location of depots, etc.

Robert Dickson to Lieut. Gen. Drummond. Jan. 17, 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 41-42.

Dickson writes from Green Bay, explaining that the amount of goods to be used as presents is not sufficient due to the great demand for supplies and the high quantity of goods than had been damaged or ruined. He suggests an attack on St. Louis to stop the Americans from inciting a revolt of Indians in Missouri.

McDonell. "Stationary required for the Indian Department of western nations for the Year 1815." Jan. 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 35.

Lieut. Gen. Drummond to George Prevost. February 8, 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 47

Suggests route by which the Lake Ontario Indians can be moved to territory along the Mississippi River, fears they will think the English are trying to get out of giving them gifts.

Robert McDonell to A. Bulger. February 16 and 18, 1815. Vol. 23, (1893): 471-478.

McDonell is upset by the scarcity of presents for Indians. He states that this situation cannot be remedied; the Indians will not trust the British any longer because of the big promises that have not been fulfilled.

George Crooleshonk to Lt. Col. Foster. July 7, 1815. Vol. 16, (1890): 155-156.

Details return of Indian gifts meant for Fort Michilimackinac on the schooner Enterprise, includes list of items.

Askin, John. "From Mr. Askin." 1815? Vol. 16, (1890) 32-33.

Letter to an unknown person advising that Mr. Dickson has been appropriating more than his share of supplies for the Western Indians, causing jealously among the Odawa and Chippewa.

John Askin to William Claus. Jan.15, 1816. Vol. 16, (1890): 416-421.

Discusses interpreters, the purchase of Drummond Island from the Ojibwe, and gift giving to Indians.

Thomas Howard to Lt. Col. Foster. July 26, 1818. Vol. 16, (1890): 621-623.

Indians of Drummond are angry because they are not receiving their presents due to detention of shipment by the Americans.

Thomas Trew to William Robertson. August 17, 1818. Vol. 16, (1890): 633-634.
William Robertson to Major Bowles. October 15, 1818. Vol. 16, (1890): 642.
Thomas Trew to Robertson. n.d. Vol. 16, (1890): 644.
Robertson to Trew. October 17 and 18, 1818. Vol. 16, (1890): 645.

Discusses the issue of whether or not wives of interpreters and "women who co-habitat with Europeans" should receive gifts.

"Memorial of Amable Chevalier." October 3, 1821. Vol. 23, (1893): 113-115.
"Goods Referred to the Foregoing Memorial." n.d. Vol. 23, (1893): 113-115.

Chevalier, chief of Algonquins, is asking the Governor of Canada for a list of goods in exchange for service to the British.

"Invoice of Goods and Merchandise Taken by John A. Drew in his Trade with the Indians at Grand River - December 12 - 1834." Vol. 37, (1910): 309-311.

Robinson, Seth T. "Early Indian Orders." Vol. 35, (1907): 695-696.

These 1859 letters from Robinson to C. Mears and John Sedam request that they distribute 2000 feet of lumber to three Indians and send the charges for the lumber to the Indian Department.