4. Young Beaver to Elias Boudinot, 17 September 1828
. . . An attempt has been made to enforce upon us the belief that if we were to emigrate, it would facilitate our civilization, and we would sooner become an enlightened people. But any man of moral capacity who will divest himself of all unnatural prejudices, and view the subject, will at once perceive the fallacy of this doctrine. Our present location possesses greatly the ascendancy in every point of view. our improvement is as rapid as can reasonably be expected, and we are much farther advanced in the arts and sciences than our brethren at Arkansas. Now, I would ask to be informed by the votaries of this doctrine of policy, how it happens that those who live at the "paradise of the west," which affords such powerful means to propel them onward in improvement, are so far behind us? The examples of the surrounding sates possess a great influence over us. Our political Government keeps pace by gradual changes, as we imbibe new principles of legislation, with our domestic advancement . Our population is not on the wane in consequence of our situation amidst the whites, but is rapidly increasing - the implements of husbandry have been substituted for the bow and quiver. In short we possess all the enjoyments adequate to the support of common life. Now why deprive us of all our comforts, tear us from all we all we hold dear, and drag us from the soil which gave us birth, rendered doubly precious, as the bones of our fathers have been deposited here from time immemorial, to accomplish that which is now in rapid progression? Why disregard our prayers for justice, cruelly sport with our feelings, and trample under foot our best interests? Will a glimpse of the blue summit of the Rocky Mountains inspire us with a moral aptitude to learn anthems of adoration to the Great Father of the universe? Will an association with bears and buffaloes give a new spring and vigour to our efforts, and thereby enhance our civil and moral improvement? or will the examples of more ignorant and barbarous tribes act as a great incentive for us to train up our children after their manner of enlightened communities, that they may become adept in the sciences, and dive into the deep recesses of nature, and finally become a renowned people? No. Remove us west of the Mississippi and what will be the result? . . . degradation with its concomitant train of evils.