Justice for the black pioneers was hard to find on the western frontier. In March 1848, for example, the Army exposed a Cherokee kidnapping ring. The female gang leader was brought to trial, but the judge dismissed all charges. John Horse appealed directly to General Jesup:
"[B]ut the other day three of our people were stolen and more than a month has passed & have not yet been recovered. One of the principals in this theft has been placed before the law, and from some Cause or other she has been let go -- Some say there is no law against stealing
In a letter to Jesup dated June 10, 1848, probably dictated to a soldier at Fort Gibson, John Horse continued his lament:
"We have great many enemies, great many who think only of doing us injuries -- many who fabricate false claims and who for a few goods or a little whisky make false titles to our great annoyance. [We] are much annoyed, our people carried away, and our horses an object for many bad persons so that we are now reduced to great poverty."
Sources: Porter Black 123, Mulroy 44.
Part 3, Exile: l