Proposition to the Five Nations

Dublin Core


Proposition to the Five Nations


History, Military, Five Nations, the Crown, Protection, Reward


As European conflicts escalate outside of the North American continent, there was little attention paid to the colonies. The West Indies were identified as the crown jewels of the Americas, so if problems were to erupt their attention was focused more so there than in mainland North America. In order to ensure their safety, the Iroquois League was needed. Governor Hunter’s letter addressing the Five Nations at the time stresses this fact. His letter explains to the Five Nations that so long as they uphold their agreement to keep the peace amongst one another and come to the protection of the British if needed, the King will ensure his good will and safety to them as well as being gifted a handsome reward. Hunter’s letter emphasized the need for a mutual dependency on one another, with the Natives benefitting from the goods that could be provided by the British and of course the British ultimately benefitting for the use of the Iroquois League’s military might. The letter was one of reassurance for the British, making sure they are adequately defended and prepared in case of an attack from the French or French allied natives. For a European power to formerly call upon the Iroquois League in this manner is a testament to the latter’s strength.


Robert Hunter


The Livingston Family Papers


University of Memphis


June 16, 1717


[no text]


The Gilder Lehrman Institue of American History


Robert Hunter, “Proposition to the Five Nations,” Early North America, accessed May 30, 2020,

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