The buyer of a draft 1851 St. Regis Mohawk petition to lease Barnhart Island at an auction Saturday offered the document Monday to the tribe for the amount he paid.
"I know I could have gotten a lot more than that in the right setting," said Gregory S. Caron, Hopkinton. "I don't care how much money I make."
The document, uncovered among hundreds of others in a trunk that Kip E. Blanchard's Auction Service, Potsdam, found while picking up items from an estate, referred to earlier treaties and proposed a 999-year lease for the island. St. Regis Mohawk Tribe Subchief Pamela Brown was among those bidding on the document in the hope of obtaining it for the tribe's museum.
Neither Ms. Brown nor tribal spokesman David T. Staddon returned a phone call for comment, but Mr. Caron said Ms. Brown was happy when he called to tell her Monday he wanted to sell her the document for his cost, $994.50, which includes the tax and the commission for auctioneer Kip E. Blanchard.
"She was tickled," Mr. Caron said. "The whole thing made me feel good."
Hundreds of people showed up Saturday at the auction house on Potsdam-Morley Road to bid on papers from the 1800s. Mr. Caron, owner of Greg & Molly's store in Hopkinton, left with one of the most prized documents of the auction.
Documents that mention the St. Regis Mohawks are rare because much of their history was told orally, said antiquarian book dealer Thomas L. Jenison, Canton.
On Saturday Ms. Brown said the tribe hoped to put the document on display at its museum.
All of the documents at the auction came from one of the earliest law partnerships in the county, Dart & Tappan, which became the firm of Verner M. Ingram Jr., Potsdam.