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Narrative of Marie Le Roy and Barbara Leininger

The Narrative of Mary le Roy and Barbara Leininger. Who for four and a half years were captive among the Indians, and on the 6th May 1759 arrived happy in this city. From her own lips never written and promoted to the Press. This manuscript gives an account of the captivity and escape of these two girls, whose families lived on Penn’s Creek, in the present Union County, Pennsylvania. It also provides a lengthy list of names of other prisoners met by the two ladies in their captivity.

Narrative of the Captivity of Maria and Christina Manheim – Indian Captivities

Frederick Manheim, an industrious German, with his family, consisting of his wife, a daughter of eighteen years of age, and Maria and Christina, his youngest children, (twins,) about sixteen, resided near the river Mohawk, eight miles west of Johnston. On the 19th of October, 1779, the father being at work at some distance from his habitation, and the mother and eldest daughter on a visit at a neighbor’s, two hostile Canasadaga Indians rushed in and captured the twin sisters. The party to which these savages belonged consisted of fifty warriors, who, after securing twenty-three of the inhabitants of that neighborhood, (among whom was the unfortunate Frederick Manheim) and firing their houses, retired for four days with the utmost precipitancy, till they were quite safe from pursuit. The place where they halted on the evening of the day of rest was a thick pine swamp, which rendered the darkness of an uncommonly gloomy night still more dreadful. The Indians kindled a fire, which they had not done before, and ordered their prisoners, whom they kept together, to refresh themselves with such provisions as they had. The Indians eat by themselves. After supper the appalled captives observed their enemies, instead of retiring to rest, busied in operations which boded nothing good. Two saplings were pruned clear of branches up to the very top, and all the brush cleared away for several rods around them. While this was doing, others were splitting pitch-pine billets into small splinters about five inches in length, and as small as one’s little finger, sharpening one end, and dipping the other in melted turpentine. At length, with...

Experience Bozarth’s Heroic Stand – Indian Captivities

Signal Prowess of a Woman, In a Combat with Some Indians. In a Letter to a Lady of Philadelphia Westmoreland, April 26, 1779. Madam, I have written an account of a very particular affair between a white man and two Indians.1 I am now to give you a relation in which you will see how a person of your sex acquitted herself in defense of her own life, and that of her husband and children. The lady who is the burthen of this story is named Experience Bozarth. She lives on a creek called Dunkard creek, in the southwest corner of this county. About the middle of March last, two or three families, who were afraid to stay at home, gathered to her house and there stayed; looking on themselves to be safer than when all scattered about at their own houses. On a certain day some of the children thus collected came running in from play in great haste, saying there were ugly red men. One of the men in the house stepped to the door, where he received a ball in the side of his breast, which caused him to fall back into the house. The Indian was immediately in over him, and engaged with another man who was in the house. The man tossed the Indian on a bed, and called for a knife to kill him. (Observe these were all the men that were in the house.) Now Mrs. Bozarth appears the only defense, who, not finding a knife at hand, took up an axe that lay by, and with one blow cut out the brains...

Rev. John Corbly’s Narrative – Indian Captivities

If, after perusing the annexed melancholy narrative, you deem it worthy a place in your publication, it is at your service. Such communications, founded on fact, have a tendency on one hand to make us feel for the persons afflicted, and on the other to impress our hearts with gratitude to the Sovereign Disposer of all events for that emancipation which the United States have experienced from the haughty claims of Britain a power, at that time, so lost to every human affection, that, rather than not subdue and make us slaves, they basely chose to encourage, patronize and reward, as their most faithful and beloved allies, the savages of the wilderness; who, without discrimination, barbarously massacred the industrious husband man, the supplicating female, the prattling child and tender infant, vainly sheltered within the encircling arms of maternal fondness. Such transactions, as they come to our knowledge well authenticated, ought to be recorded, that our posterity may not be ignorant of what their ancestors underwent at the trying period of our national exertions for American independence. The following account was, at my request, drawn up by the unfortunate sufferer. Respecting the author, suffice it to say, that he is an ordained minister of the Baptist faith and order, and held in high estimation by all our associated churches. I am, sir, yours, &c., William Rogers Muddy Creek, Washington County, July 8, 1785. Dear Sir, The following is a just and true account of the tragical scene of my family’s falling by the savages, which I related when at your house in Philadelphia, and you requested me to forward in...

Narrative of the Captivity of Capt. William Hubbell – Indian Captivities

A Narrative of the desperate encounter and escape of Capt. William Hubbell from the Indians while descending the Ohio River in a boat with others, in the year 1791. Originally set forth in the Western Review, and afterwards republished by Dr. Metcalf, in his “Narratives of Indian Warfare in the West.” In the year 1791, while the Indians were yet troublesome, especially on the banks of the Ohio, Capt. William Hubbell, who had previously emigrated to Kentucky from the state of Vermont, and who, after having fixed his family in the neighborhood of Frankfort, then a frontier settlement, had been compelled to go to the eastward on business, was now a second time on his way to this country. On one of the tributary streams of the Monongahela, he procured a flat-bottomed boat, and embarked in company with Mr. Daniel Light and Mr. William Plascut and his family, consisting of a wife and eight children, destined for Limestone, Kentucky. On their passage down the river, and soon after passing Pittsburgh, they saw evident traces of Indians along the banks, and there is every reason to believe that a boat which they overtook, and which, through carelessness, was suffered to run aground on an island, became a prey to these merciless savages. Though Capt. Hubbell and his party stopped some time for it in a lower part of the river, it did not arrive, and it has never, to their knowledge, been heard of. Before they reached the mouth of the great Kenhawa they had, by several successive additions, increased their number to twenty persons, consisting of nine men, three...

An Account of the Sufferings of Mercy Harbison – Indian Captivities

On the 4th of November, 1791, a force of Americans under General Arthur St. Clair was attacked, near the present Ohio-Indiana boundary line, by about the same number of Indians led by Blue Jacket, Little Turtle, and the white renegade Simon Girty. Their defeat was the most disastrous that ever has been suffered by our arms when engaged against a savage foe on anything like even terms. Out of 86 officers and about 1400 regular and militia soldiers, St. Clair lost 70 officers killed or wounded, and 845 men killed, wounded, or missing. The survivors fled in panic, throwing away their weapons and accoutrements. Such was “St. Clair’s defeat.”

The utter incompetency of the officers commanding this expedition may be judged from the single fact that a great number of women were allowed to accompany the troops into a wilderness known to be infested with the worst kind of savages. There were about 250 of these women with the “army” on the day of the battle. Of these, 56 were killed on the spot, many being pinned to the earth by stakes driven through their bodies. Few of the others escaped captivity.

After this unprecedented victory, the Indians became more troublesome than ever along the frontier. No settler’s home was safe, and many were destroyed in the year of terror that followed. The awful fate of one of those households is told in the following touching narrative of Mercy Harbison, wife of one of the survivors of St. Clair’s defeat. How two of her little children were slaughtered before her eyes, how she was dragged through the wilderness with a babe at her breast, how cruelly maltreated, and how she finally escaped, barefooted and carrying her infant through days and nights of almost superhuman exertion, she has left record in a deposition before the magistrates at Pittsburgh and in the statement here reprinted.

Narrative of Robert Eastburn – Indian Captivities

A Faithful Narrative of the Many Dangers and Sufferings, as well as wonderful and surprising deliverances, of Robert Eastburn, during his late captivity among the Indians. Written by Himself. Published at the earnest request of many persons, for the benefit of the Public. With a recommendatory Preface by the Rev. Gilbert Tennent. Psalms 24, 6, 7, and 193, 2, 4. Philadelphia: Printed. Boston: Reprinted and sold by Green & Russell, opposite the Probate Office in Queen street, 1753. Preface Candid Reader: The author (and subject) of the ensuing narrative (who is a deacon of our church, and has been so for many years) is of such an established good character, that he needs no recommendation of others where he is known; a proof of which was the general joy of the inhabitants of this city, occasioned by his return from a miserable captivity; together with the readiness of divers persons to contribute to the relief of himself and necessitous family, without any request of his, or the least motion of that tendency. But seeing the following sheets are like to spread into many places where he is not known, permit me to say that, upon long acquaintance, I have found him to be a person of candor, integrity, and sincere piety, whose testimony may with safety be depended upon; which give his narrative the greater weight, and may induce to read it with the greater pleasure. The design of it is evidently pious; the matters contained in it and manner of handling them, will, I hope, be esteemed by the impartial to be entertaining and improving. I wish it...

Life and travels of Colonel James Smith – Indian Captivities

James Smith, pioneer, was born in Franklin county, Pennsylvania, in 1737. When he was eighteen years of age he was captured by the Indians, was adopted into one of their tribes, and lived with them as one of themselves until his escape in 1759. He became a lieutenant under General Bouquet during the expedition against the Ohio Indians in 1764, and was captain of a company of rangers in Lord Dunmore’s War. In 1775 he was promoted to major of militia. He served in the Pennsylvania convention in 1776, and in the assembly in 1776-77. In the latter year he was commissioned colonel in command on the frontiers, and performed distinguished services. Smith moved to Kentucky in 1788. He was a member of the Danville convention, and represented Bourbon county for many years in the legislature. He died in Washington county, Kentucky, in 1812. The following narrative of his experience as member of an Indian tribe is from his own book entitled “Remarkable Adventures in the Life and Travels of Colonel James Smith,” printed at Lexington, Kentucky, in 1799. It affords a striking contrast to the terrible experiences of the other captives whose stories are republished in this book; for he was well treated, and stayed so long with his red captors that he acquired expert knowledge of their arts and customs, and deep insight into their character.

Narrative of the Sufferings of Peter Williamson – Indian Captivities

Not for the faint of heart or stomach, this is a graphically descriptive recounting of the captivity of Peter Williamson, who was taken by the Delaware Indians, at his own house near the forks of the Delaware in Pennsylvania. Of all the sufferings reported by captives, this particular account appears to go above and beyond the usual descriptions, almost to the point of unbelievability – because in this case, he doesn’t simply report the acts of cruelty, but vividly describes them in the most horrid fashion, even to claim the Delaware committed cannibalism on one of their captives, and then explaining how they did it.

War Between the Colonies and The Western Indians – From 1763 To 1765

A struggle began in 1760, in which the English had to contend with a more powerful Indian enemy than any they had yet encountered. Pontiac, a chief renowned both in America and Europe, as a brave and skillful warrior, and a far-sighted and active ruler, was at the head of all the Indian tribes on the great lakes. Among these were the Ottawas, Miamis, Chippewas, Wyandott, Pottawatomie, Winnebago, Shawanese, Ottagamie, and Mississagas. After the capture of Quebec, in 1760, Major Rodgers was sent into the country of Pontiac to drive the French from it. Apprised of his approach, Pontiac sent ambassadors to inform him that their chief was not far off, and desired him to halt until he could see him “with his own eyes.” When Pontiac met the English officer, he demanded to know the business which had brought him into his country, and how he dared to enter it without his permission. The major told him he had no designs against the Indians, but only wished to expel the French; and at the same time, he delivered him several belts of wampum. Pontiac replied, “I stand in the path you travel until tomorrow morning,” and gave the major a belt. This communication was understood to mean, that the intruder was not to march further without his leave. Next day, the English detachment was plentifully supplied with provisions by the Indians, and Pontiac giving the commander the pipe of peace, assured him that he might pass through his country unmolested, and that he would protect him and his party. As an earnest of his friendship, he sent one...
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