From this trait of character the Canadians gave them the very appropriate surname of Rascal from which the principal stream of the country is now known as the Rascal or Rogues' river, and its ancient and far more musical appellation of Too- too-ta-ne is almost entirely disused. Tho' in many instances where the thief was taken in the fact a summary punishment was inflicted yet in accordance with their general policy of conciliation, I have heard of no instance in which parties belonging to the Hudson Bay Company inflicted the punishment of death for a crime of 1st degree than murder.
The first extreme punishment inflicted on these people for their disregard of the laws of property was by a party headed by Ewing Young esq. late of Chahalem valley and the founder of that settlement. His party of 18 men were encamped on the Too-too-ta-ne near its mouth. A large number of the natives assembled at his camp, and while in the act of stealing some meat from a scaffold, The party being under arms received from Mr. Young the order to fire, a terrible slaughter of the unprepared natives ensued and the only injury sustained by the assailants was a serious bite received by one of the men while stripping the skin from the head of an Indian not yet dead.
Mr. Young on the same expedition visited the Klamath lake where again a large body of Indians approached his camp as he believed with hostile intents: he anticipated their attack killing a number on the land and driving
the rest into the lake where my informant (one of the party) is confident one hundred must have perished.
These facts were related to me by Mr. George Gay of Yamhill county an inveterate Indian hater and a justification of Mr. Young; but as in both instances the whites acted on suspicion only, the Indians making no positive demonstrations of hostility they can be regarded only as wanton destruction of human life.
Mr. Young's expedition took place 12 or 15 years ago, and I have gone thru back into the early history of the intercourse of the whites with the Southern Indians because in that period I think is found the answer to your inquiry.
Since that expedition these people have ever been hostile to the Whites. Being by nature suspicious and revengeful even if their after treatment by Whites had been uniformly friendly it is doubtful whether these early injuries would yet be forgotten.
But as a great throughfare lies through their country the kindness they have received at the hands of one party has sometimes caused them to trust themselves in the power of another, where the existence of an ancient grudge, or a reckless spirit has made them repent their confidence.
Consequently as fear and interest are their governing principles they continue to gratify their ancient cupidity by robbing or stealing on all favorable opportunities, and for the ill treatment they receive from the strong, they retaliate on the weak.
Such was the state of things when the late superintendent Mr. Gov. Lane resigned his commission as such to take effect some time in June 1850. As he was about to pass thru the Rogues river country on his way to California he fixed a day for his resignation to take effect suficiently distant
to promote the best interests of his country cannot be doubted and by inducing the "Abiding Horse" and some others of the principal men to enter into an agreement to keep the peace he partially effected his object but as by his own initiation he had ceased to be an officer of his Government he could only regard his acts however good in their tendency as the unauthorized efforts of a private citizen. For Gov Lane too well knew what is due to his Government to have in an official capacity received as friends Savages tricked out in arms and clothing obtained by the rape and murder of her citizens, and Soldiers, without demanding and enticing ample restitution. He looked (as we have long looked in vain) to the establishment of a military post in the country and from such establishment alone in my opinion are we to expect a permanent peace.
Before the appearance of Mr. Spaulding's publication in the Spectator of August 5th, I was not aware that the late treaty negotiated with a part of the Rogues river Indians was the act of Gov. Gaines. I had supposed that power vested in the Indian Department, and I had also understood that Mr. Spaulding's precipitate journey to Rogues river was undertaken solely to relieve Gov. Gaines from the responsibility of assuming this power; if such was not the object of the Indian Agent and Gov. Gaines powers were conditions to enable him to appear for and bind his Government in a treaty, Mr. Spaulding in his great zeal to share the dangers of such negotations, should not have forgotten that the Umpqua Indians would again feel disappointed and aggrieved at his non appearance at a meeting to which he had called [...]