JANUARY 20, 1830


Born circa 1750-51, near current Branchport, New York (NY), his given name was Otetiani. As chief, he took the name Sagoyewatha, meaning “He keeps them awake.” The name “Red Jacket” came from a British coat given to him after the Revolutionary War. He was a splendid orator. Claiming publicly to be opposed to land sales, he secretly signed cessions in 1787, 1788 & 1790. In 1792, George Washington, finalizing a treaty with the Six Nations, gave him a silver medal which he wore until his death. Red Jacket, in 1810, alerted Indian agents to Tecumseh’s efforts to enlist the aid of the Senecas. In the War of 1812, the Senecas allied with the Americans. Accused by Chief Joseph Brant of cowardice before Gen. John Sullivan’s troops in 1779, Red Jacket allegedly showed bravery at Fort George in 1813. During the 1820s, he lost prestige due to drinking but was reinstated as a chief through U.S. intercession. He died at Seneca Village, Buffalo, NY.  

  “Red Jacket, Seneca Chief,” Britannica.  Retrieved 2/24/2021, Red Jacket | Seneca chief | Britannica
“Red Jacket,” Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography.  Retrieved 2/24/2021, Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Red-Jacket - Wikisource, the free online library
Painting:  C.B. King; 1835.  Chromolithograph by Corbould; printed by C. Hallmandel.  Public Domain. Source:  Library of Congress's Prints and Photographs division under the digital ID ppmsca.05086.

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