American Indian and Alaska Native Newspapers and Periodicals, 1826-1924 - Vol. 1

By Daniel F. Littlefield Jr.; James W. Parins | Go to book overview

of the river. Removal was the only way McCoy saw of "reforming" the native people. After Congress established the Indian Territory in 1830, McCoy severed his connection with the Baptist missions and was appointed Agent of Indian Affairs. His duties included selecting and surveying lands for the settlement of removed Indians, but he spent much of his time in Washington lobbying for his plan for colonization. 1

With the motto "And the Desert Shall Rejoice and Bloom as the Rose" the monthly Indian Advocate contained mission and general Indian news. Missionary news from America and overseas was published regularly as were letters from missionaries and American Indian Mission Association notices and proceedings. News of treaties and other governmental actions concerning Indians was included as well as articles on American Indian customs and proverbs and accounts of Indian legends. Also published was verse on the subject of Indians. Religious topics were covered as well; reviews of religious publications, sermons, and religious and inspirational verse, temperance articles, and religious fiction accounted for a large share of the material printed. Reprints from other publications, donation lists, and news of immigrants coming to America were also included.

After directing the association at Louisville for four years, Isaac McCoy died there on June 21, 1846. Who edited the Advocate then is uncertain. The paper reported in July, 1847, that the Advocate would continue under the editorship of the corresponding secretary of the American Indian Mission Association. In September, 1847, the Reverend Sidney Dyer became corresponding secretary and the active editor of the publication. Dyer was born at Cambridge, New York, on February 11, 1814. Largely self-educated, he received some formal schooling at the Amity Street Classic School at New York City. He served in the Army for a time during the Black Hawk War and was ordained a Baptist clergyman in 1842. After some missionary work among the Choctaws, Dyer went to Louisville as secretary of the association. 2

Dyer was last listed as corresponding secretary in September, 1852; no successor was named until September, 1853, when the Reverend S. L. Helm took the responsibility. That year, the Advocate was expanded to eight pages. Helm continued as editor until Thomas M. Vaughan became secretary in July, 1854.

The Indian Advocate ceased publication apparently with the January, 1855, issue.


Notes
1.
Edward Everett Dale, "Isaac McCoy," in Dumas Malone (ed.), Dictionary of American Biography ( New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1933), 9: 617-618. For a discussion of McCoy's colonization plan, see Emory J. Lyons, Isaac McCoy: His Plan of and Workn for Indian Colonization ( Topeka: Kansas State Printing Plant, 1945), passim.
2.
In 1859, Dyer became secretary of the American Baptist Publication Society. He was the author of verse and several musical compositions. "Sidney Dyer," in James Grant Wilson and John Fiske (eds.), Appleton Cyclopaedia of American Biography ( New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1887), 2: 286; "Rev. Sidney Dyer, Ph.D.," in

-162-

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