WAKE - The Treaty of Paris 1763 was signed between the French king and the English king ending the French and Indian War/Seven Year War in Indiana. The treaty awarded all French territories in North America east of the Mississippi to the Brits. That included Indiana for those of you who are geographically challenged. It was a horrific disaster for Pontiac’s “Indians First” movement. The Indians would no longer be able to pit the French humans against the English humans in North America.
WHAT - Looking in the rear view mirror of the period between 1763 and 1765 indicates the woeful British attempts to go down a negotiating rabbit hole with the Indians for peace. There were flare ups with the Indians led by Chief Pontiac. Many battles ensued with death counts and carnage increasing on both sides. The British couldn’t get their signal of peace to the Indians through the noise of war. The British over and under for success with the Indians was not good during this period.
WHY- That was until 1765 when the Brits hired George Croghan a fur trader and Indian negotiating blue chipper from Pennsylvania. Croghan became the OG Mac Daddy of Indian negotiators for the British. Croghan (an Irish bright) who had been trading with the Indians spoke their language and understood their culture. He brought down the firewall between the British and Indians.
WEAVE - He met with Pontiac and Indian leaders several times once at Fort Ouiatenon (Lafayette, IN) and then Fort Detroit. He convinced Pontiac’s entourage to go to New York to sign a peace treaty with his Indian Affairs boss to end the conflict. Pontiac agreed - went to New York in 1766 and signed the huge sell off “Peace Treaty” and came back to the banks of the Maumee River to what he thought would be an easy retirement. Pontiac’s polling numbers crashed. His fellow Indians were upside down furious with him. The Indians felt he had negotiated against their interest, and was a sellout taking money and gifts for himself from the British. The Indians accused him of selfishly throwing them and their lands under the bus even though he claimed not.
The British called on Pontiac one last time in 1769 to Fort Chartres to settle a local tribal dispute. He was tomahawked upside of the head to death by a Peoria Indian from - Peoria. An explosive coverup theory was the assassin was enlisted by the British to do the fatal deed because Pontiac was becoming a nettlesome issue (Pontiac Derangement Syndrome) with the Indians. The Brits thought Pontiac was harming the new found British/Indian relationship.
WARN - Pontiac was dead! But the genetic code of a conspiracy theory thrived among the Indians. What happened to the infamous George Croghan who had befriended Pontiac? Well, he became filthy rich and famous. The American Revolution for independence from British rule was about to begin after the Boston Massacre of 1770. Indiana readied for American settlers, but remained a hot zone with the Indians inspired by the British. It would continue for decadesThe end of Hoosieroon Podcast #21 thanks for listening. Cp