To Rev. Greene: December 28, 1835

Cohocton Dec 28th 1835

Rev. D Green,

Dear Sir

In answer to yours of 8th Dec I would say that I think all the questions are substantially answered by my communication already forwarded to you We should expect to take pack animals suffecentt to carry evry absolutely necessary article of cooking utencial, furniture and clothing. We should go as far as the black hills with a waggon. Capt Wiet of Boston or Charlestown now trading on the Columbia river was to send a vessel from the Columbia River to Boston in Oct last. He is connected with some house in Boston of whome information could be obtained as to a future voyage. I understand the vessell is to return Soon after her arival to the Columbia. Whenever she should return all heavy articles of agricultere furniture +c could be sent by her to the mouth of the Multinoma River and from there be taken up the columbia to Wallawalla. The Northwest Furr Company have two vessells arrive and depart at Vancouver from England each year They have entencive stocks of goods at Vancouver which are said to be sold at the London retail prices. I think we can safely rely upon them for such supplys as we need. The N. F. Co. have a mill at Vancouver and the Co. and setlers rais a large supply of grain. The only point upon which Mr Parker and myself felt axious was the disposition of the N F Company toward the establishment of a mission among the Napiersas. Doct McLockland the principal trader at Vancouver and general superintendant for the other posts is represented by Capt Steward as leading family worship at his post and as being friendly to education and at least to religious forms. He was expecting an Episcopalian Minister for his post and a [Catholick] Priest for the companys men We thought it best to rely upon the company for their cooperation and in the mean time Mr Parker will have visited them and assertained all that will necessary upon this point. It will be usefull for you to obtain a letter from the Secretary of War directed to the Governor general at Vancouver and the Traders of the Northwest Furr Company desiring their assistance and cooperation and a similar one to the American Agents Traders +c I do not know how far it would be wise or safe to communicate facts upon the subject of the introduction of ardent spirit among the Indians or to sugest to the Secretary of War the remedy. All the presant regulation upon this point are disregarded or evaded and I fear all further regulations will be equally ineffectuall. No regulation however wise will avail unless the Agents refuse to relicence such Traders as sell Ardent spirit to the Indians and remove them from the Indian Country This measure which is wholly within the power of Government would to a great extent remove the evill. Let the Agents be instructed and held responsible for the accomplishment of this object and let the Traders be required to show by the certificates of ther clerks and assistants that they have not violated the conditions of their licenc previous to receiving a new one The Northwest Furr Company have a distillery at Vancouver and the American Furr Traders have one at the mouth of the Yellowstone River. You are aware of the delecacy of this subject to one who is liable to be exposed to opposition of Trader This power of Traders among the Indians cannot be easily conceived. A man with goods is a great Father with the Indians With such means he can instegate the Indian to any deed of violence without fear of being personally implicated. And in evry trder as it were by necessity we find an enimy for it is the interest of Traders to keep the Indians unsettled. I was told by a man formerly a partner in this trade that our object would always be regarded as opposed to their interest. Yet we found profesed friends among all the Traders and received many favours and evry facility we could expect. direct to Rushville, N. Y.

Yours truely
Marcus Whitman

Last updated: March 1, 2015

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