Penn’s Pen: Dear Emperor of Canada…

In June of 1682, Penn was busily preparing to leave for Pennsylvania.  But already he was writing to the Native Americans and establishing his two main concerns:  peaceful title to land and establishing commerce through the Free Society of Traders.  The Emperor of Canada is probably an Iroquois chief.
You can find the original of this letter in our exhibit:

“TO THE EMPEROR OF CANADA

The Great God that made thee and me and all the World Incline our hearts to love peace and Justice that we may live friendly together as becomes the workmanship of the great God.  The King of England who is a Great Prince hath for divers Reasons Granted to me a large Country in America which however I am willing to Injoy upon friendly termes with thee.  And this I will say that the people who comes with me are a just plain and honest people that neither make war upon others nor fear war from others because they will be just.  I have sett up a Society of Traders in my Province to traffick with thee and thy people for your Commodities that you may be furnished with that which is good at reasonable rates  And that Society hath ordered their President to treat with thee about a future Trade and have joined with me to Send this Messenger to thee with certain Presents from us to testify our Willingness to have a fair Correspondence with thee:  And what this Agent shall do in our names we will agree unto.  I hope thou wilt kindly Receive him and Comply with his desires on our behalf both with Respect to Land and Trade.  The Great God be with thee.  Amen.”

 

Written by Mary Ellyn Kunz, Museum Educator

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One comment on “Penn’s Pen: Dear Emperor of Canada…

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