Chief Sharitarish on Changes in Indian Life (Pg. 188)
Chief Sharitarish, the principle chieftain of the once Great Pawnees who are a tribe that mainly hunted on the Great Plains, decided to pay a visit to the new president of the time, James Monroe. Impressed by the colonist’s ability to create beautiful buildings and large vessels, Chief Sharitarish praises them for their innovations for these creations are far from his own comprehension. He thanks them for allowing him and his tribe “protection” but he mislead and directed his praise to a greater, more important being, the Great Spirit. Sharitarish praised and thanked the men, but he didn’t mean to thank them more than the Maker of Life. Here, Sharitarish begins to reveal his true objective; He wants to get the colonial men off their land and he desires peace. He believes that the Great Spirit intended them to have their differences and to live differently as well. As Native Americans, Sharitarish feels that his people were meant to roam the lands, hunt, and take scalps. He quietly suggests removal of the colonists, but he knows they will not move, so he proposes that the colonists stay off their land and in return Sharitarish will continue to trade fur with the colonists. Basically, Sharitarish makes an attempt to cooexist with the colonists. He does not intend for war or to physically fight the Americans, but he does want to preserve the land for his people, his children, and his culture. So the chieftain makes a compromise in order to try and obtain the land from the white man, while keeping the relations with the colonists relatively peaceful.