In 1778, the Native Americans of Delaware and soldiers of the confederation of the United States signed a treaty agreeing that each side would be peaceful to the other. Indeed, the treaty said that the two groups would form a state together that would have representation in Congress (Kappler, 1904). Had this treaty been faithfully kept, the political landscape of the United States would have been markedly different. Perhaps the presence of Native American representatives and senators would not be as proportionately low. Similarly, in 1784, Americans Commissioners Plenipotentiary, signed a treaty guaranteeing the protection of six Native American tribes – the Seneca, Mohawk, Onondaga and Cayuga. If these tribes, said the commissioners, would give up the hostages they took, then the United States would protect them and they would be secure in their land (Kappler, 1904). This treaty was not kept either. Had it been, land stretching eastward from Lake Ontario and south to Pennsylvania would belong to Native Americans only. This tone of peace and restoration marked most of the treaties between the Americans of European descent and the various tribes.
Indeed, in 1814, the Americans signed The Treaty of Peace and Amity Between His Britannic Majesty and the United States of America, in which one article says that the Americans will restore to the tribes every possession, right or privilege lost (Bernholz, 2002). Had this been the case, American geography would be incredibly different. The Cherokee had occupied nearly all of Kentucky and Tennessee, well over half of South Carolina and good portions of Georgia and Alabama. Other tribes occupied Kansas, Delaware, the Dakotas, and most of the rest of the United States (Bernholz, 2002). Therefore, had every treaty with the Native Americans been kept, the United States might not exist. If the native people, or at least, many of them, had agreed to become states, then the confederacy would exist, but its character would be different. There would be no reservations. The problem of poverty on the reservations would very likely be different if the native people held power. Meanwhile, the friction that exists between those of native descent and those of European descent might have, by now, been eliminated.
Bernholz, C. D. (2002). American Indian treaties and the presidents: A guide to the treaties proclaimed by each administration. The Social Studies , 93 (5), 218-228.
Kappler, C. J. (1904). Indian Affairs: Laws and Treatie. Washington D.C.: Government Printing Office.