Chief Tecumseh Essay, Research Paper
The demise of the Native Americans
In my opinion, having only the education of experience, Chief Tecumseh was a very intelligent and insightful man. He realized, and refused to accept that the Native Americans were being stripped of their lives and lands through deception and violence. He then took it upon himself to bring an end to the injustices his people were being dealt. In his speech to the Osage Indian tribe, “We all belong to one family,” Tecumseh acknowledged that the Native Americans had essentially created a monster in the white man, and how it was their responsibility to stop it before it could cause more damage. In an attempt to rally support for an Indian uprising and form a coalition of tribes, he reminded the members of the inhumane treatment they have received at the hands of the white man. Tecumseh told them that God had provided a home for everyone, the white man’s was “beyond the great waters” (744) and that North America belongs to the natives. He realized that the only way to reclaim the land and regain peace in his homeland would be through a bloody war with the white man and ironically, an alliance with England.
Tecumseh gave a brief history of how the white man was completely out of his element when arriving in North America. The settlers were cold and starving, and ill prepared for what the New World had to offer. He explained that out of compassion, the natives provided them with the basic human needs for survival, i.e. food, medicine, shelter. They were also provided with land to build their homes, hunt for food, and plant crops.
When the white man was able to survive on his own, he started driving the Indians out of their native lands with violence. Tecumseh likened them to “poisonous serpents” (744), who in the winter when hibernating, were totally harmless. However, during warm weather, they would “sting their benefactors to death” (744). The white man was never happy with what he had. To satisfy his greed, he preyed upon the natives, killing the old and weak, and eventually drove them from their homes.
Tecumseh had grown tired of the natives being cheated out of their land, and treated like non-humans. He realized that the only way to drive the white man out, and for life to return back to the way it was before, was for all tribes to unite as one nation against them. Retaliation through violence was the only way he could be sure the natives would be successful. Tecumseh explained that he had also formed an alliance with the British, and they would provide all of the weapons and troops the Indians needed to be victorious in reclaiming their land.
God only knows what the world would be like now, had Tecumseh been successful in uniting all of the Native Americans into one nation. The United States probably would not be what it is today. Perhaps, the Native Americans would have formed their own country and the white man would have received the discriminatory treatment once placed on the Native Americans. However, more likely than not, England would have turned her back (which is what eventually happened to Tecumseh) on the Native Americans. This country would probably still be under British rule.