In 1851, agents of the United States government negotiated 18 treaties with the leadership of tribes throughout California. The indigenous peoples of the state, who had suffered immensely at the hands of gold and land speculators, made enormous concessions in return for protection and material support. The California legislature, in the service of the moneyed interests, passed a resolution opposing the treaties. When the treaties reached the US Senate for ratification, that body refused to ratify the 18 negotiated agreements. Furthermore, the treaties were sealed from the public for nearly 50 years, and none of the Native signatories were notified of this abridged agreement.

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