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7°HOUGH every one that is in the least acquainted with the Affairs of North-America, knows of

what Consequence the Indians, commonly known to the People of New-York by the Name of the Five Nations, are, both in Peace and War ; I know of no Accounts of them, published in English, but what are very imperfeół, and indeed meer Translations of French Authors, who themselves know little of the Truth. This seems to throw some Refteåions on the Inhabiiants of our Province, as if we wanted Curiosity to enquire into our own Affairs, and were willing to rest satisfied with the Accounts the French give us of our own Indians, notwithstanding that the French in Canada are always in a different Interoft, and sometimes in open Hostility with us. This Coffsideration, I hope, will justify my attempting to write an History of the Five Nations at this Time ; and having had the Perusal of the Minutes of the Commissioners for Indian Affairs, I have been enabled to colleč many Materials for this History, which are not to be found any where

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Consequence. We are fond of searching into remote Antiquity, to know the Manners of our earliest Progenitors; and, if I am not mistaken, the Indians are living Images of them. My Design therefore in the second was, that thereby the

Genius of the Indians might appear. An Historian may paint Mens Aélions in lively Colours, or in faint

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#’ords than their own. As to my Part, I thought

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possible, to make the Evidence of the Truth depend in-
tirely on his own Veracity and judgment; and for this
Reason I have related several Transations in the
Words of the Registers, when this is once done,
he that shall write afterwards, need not all with so
much Caution.
The History of these Indians, I promise myself,
will give an agreeable Amusement to many ; almost e-
very one will findsomething in it suited to his own Palate;
but every Line will not please every Man; on the con-
trary, one will naturally approve what another con-
demns, as one desires to know what another thinks
not worth the Trouble of reading ; for which Reason,
I think, it is better to run the Risque of being sometimes
tedious to certain Readers, than to omit any Thing that
may be useful to the World.
I have sometimes thought, that Histories wrote with
all the Delicacy of a fine Romance, are like French
Dishes, more agreeable to the Palate than the Stomach,
and les, wholesome than more common and coarser Diet.
An Historian's Views must be curious and extensive,
and the History of different People and different Ages
requires different Rules, and often different Abilities to
write it I hope therefore the Reader will, from
these Considerations, receive this first Attempt of this
kind, with more than usual Allowances.
The Inhabitants of New-York have been much
more concerned in the Transačtions, which followed
the 2ear 1688, than in those which preceded it.
And as it requires uncommon Courage and Resolution
to engage willingly in the Wars against a cruel and
barbarous Enemy, 1 should be sorry to forget any that
might deserve to be remembered by their Country, with
Gratitude on that Occasion.

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