Historical Speeches

Historical Speeches


Article Index:

Dohasan II 1862 cowardly white man speech

Dohasan II, the greatest chief in the history of the Kiowa tribe, in 1833 succeeded A‛dáte, who had been deposed for having allowed his people to be surprised and massacred by the Osage in that year. It was chiefly through his influence that peace was made between the Kiowa and Osage after the massacre referred to, which has never been broken.

In 1862, when the Cheyenne, Arapaho, Comanche, Kiowa, and Kiowa Apache were assembled on Arkansas River to receive annuities, the agent threatened them with punishment if they did not cease their raids.

Dohasan listened in perfect silence to the end, when he sprang to his feet, and calling the attention of the agent to the hundreds of tipis in the valley below, replied in a characteristic speech:

“The white chief is a fool. He is a coward. His heart is small not larger than a pebble stone. His men are not strong too few to contend against my warriors. They are women.”

“There are three chiefs the white chief, the Spanish chief, and my self. The Spanish chief and myself are men. We do bad toward each other sometimes stealing horses and taking scalps but we do not get mad and act the fool. The white chief is a child, and, like a child, gets mad quick.”

“When my young men, to keep their women and children from starving, take from the white man passing through our country, killing and driving away our buffalo, a cup of sugar or coffee, the white chief is angry and threatens to send his soldiers.”

“I have looked for them a long time, but they have not come. He is a coward. His heart is a woman’s. I have spoken. Tell the great chief what I have said.”

Red Cloud’s last words to his people

Red Cloud gave this farewell address to the Lakota people on July 4, 1903, as he anticipated death approaching. 

Speech by Farmer’s Brother at Genesse River, November 21, 1798

The following speech was delivered in a public council at Genesse River, November 21, 1798, by Ho-na-ya-wus, commonly called Farmer’s brother; and, after being written as interpreted, it was signed by the principal chiefs present, and sent to the legislature of the state of New-York.


“Brothers—As you are once more assembled in council for the purpose of doing honour to yourselves, and justice to your country ; we, your brothers, the sachems, chiefs, and warriors of the Seneca nation, request you to open your ears and give attention to our voice and witness.” 

“Broihers—You will recollect the late contest between you and your father, the great king of England. This contest threw the inhabitants of this whole island into a great tumult and commotion, like a raging whirlwind which tears up the trees, and tosses to and fro the leaves, so that no one knows from whence they come, or where they will fall.”

“Brothers—This whirlwind was so directed by the Great Spirit above, as to throw into our arms two of your infant children, Jasper Parrish, and ‘Horatio Jones, We adopted them into our families and made them our children. We loved them and nourished them. They lived with us many years. At length, the Great Spirit spoke to the whirlwind, and it was still. A clear and uninterrupted sky appeared. The path of peace was opened, and the chain of friendship was once more made bright. Then these our adopted children left us, to seek their relations. We wished them to remain among us, and promised, if they would return and live in our country, to give each of them a seat of land for them and their children to sit down upon.”

“Brothers—They have returned, and have, for Several years past, been serviceable to us as interpreiers. We still feel our hearts beat with elation for them, and now wish to fulfil the promise we made them, and to reward them foi’ their services. We have, therefore, made np onr minds to give them a seat of two square miles of land, lying on the outlet of Lake Erio, about three miles below Black Rock, beginning at the mouthof a creek known by the name of Scoy-gu-quoydes creek, ruHuing one mile from the river Niagara, up said creek, thence northerly, as the riverruns, two miles; thenc« westerly owe mile, to the river ; thence up the river, as the river runs, two miles, to the place of beginning, so as to contain two square miles.”

“Brothers—We have now made known to you our minds. We expect, and earnestly request, that you will permit our friends to receive this our gift, and will make the same good to them, according to the laws and customs of your nation.”

“Brothers—Why should you hesitate to make our minds easy with regard to this our request ? To you it is but a little tlilng, and have you not complied with the request, and confirmed the gift of our brothers the Oneidas, the Onondagas, and Cayugas, to their interpreters? And shall we ask and not be heard ?”

“Brothers—We send you this our speech, to which we expect your answer before the breaking up of your great council fire.”