Lossing's Field Book of the Revolution, Vol. II., Chapter XI.







Effect of the Stamp Act in Virginia. – Boldness of Patrick Henry. – His Resolution in Opposition to the Act. – Effect of Henry’s Resolutions. – Eloquence and Skill of the Orator. – Dissolution of the Assembly. – General Congress proposed. – Repeal of the Stamp Act. – Lord Botetourt. – Thomas Jefferson. – Dissolution of the Assembly. – The Apollo Room. – Death of Botetourt. – Lord Dunmore. – His Character. – Committees of Vigilance and Correspondence. – Fast day in Virginia. – Assembly Dissolved by Dunmore. – Meeting at the Raleigh. – The Proceedings. – Delegates to the Continental Congress. – Expedition against the Indians. – Dunmore’s Schemes. – Camp at the Great Kanawha. – Battle at Mount Pleasant. – March to the Shawnee Tavern. – Old Chillicothe. – Fort Gower. – Junction of the Armies of Dunmore and Lewis. – Camp Charlotte. – Logan and Cresap. – John Gibson. – Logan’s Speech. – His Death. – Sketch of Colonel Cresap. – Treaty with the Indians. – Sentiments of Dunmore’s Officers. – Indian Wars in the West. – Daniel Boone. – Boone’s Family on the Kain-tuck-ee. – Boone’s Fort assailed by Indians. – Capture of Boone’s Daughter and Companions. – Construction of other Forts. – Indian Assaults. – Expedition against the Kentucky Settlements. – George Rogers Clarke. – Clarke’s Expedition in the Wilderness. – Expeditions against British Forts. – Simon Kenton. – Kenton’s Life and Sufferings. – Surprise of Kaskaskia. – Capture of the Garrison. – Location of Kaskaskia. – Surprise of Cahokia. – Capture of Vincennes. – Its Loss and Recapture. – Terrible March over the "Drowned Lands." – Colonel Hamilton made Prisoner. – Detroit. – Tory Emissaries. – Dr. Connolly. – Official Tampering with the Indians. – Girty before Fort Henry. – Massacre of a Reconnoitering Party. – Attack upon the Fort. – Elizabeth Zane and Mrs. Merrill. – Effect of a Log Field-piece. – Arrival of Succor. – Abandonment of the Siege. – Escape of M‘Culloch. – Fort M‘Intosh. – Expedition against Sandusky Towns. – Successful Expedition from Detroit against Kentucky Forts. – Colonel Clarke in Virginia. – Made a Brigadier. – Battle at the Blue Licks. – The Indians subdued. – Affairs at Williamsburg. – Patrick Henry’s bold Resolutions in favor of Military Preparations. – His eloquent Defense of them. – Effect of Henry’s Speech. – Seizure of Powder by Dunmore. – Patrick Henry with a Military Force. – A Compromise. – Dunmore’s Oath. – General Excitement. – Proceedings of the Assembly. – Attempt to Destroy the Magazine. – Dunmore’s Flight. – Military Preparations. – Dunmore at Norfolk. – New Government planned. – Militia Organized. – Great Seal. – Declaration of Independence proclaimed at Williamsburg. – Officers under the new Government. – Freneau’s Prophecy.



Would you worry the man that has found you in shoes?
Come, courage, my lord, I can tell you good news –
Virginia is conquer’d, the rebels are bang’d,
You are now to go over and see them safe hang’d:
I hope it is not to your nature abhorrent
To sign for these wretches a legal death-warrant.
Were I but in your place, I’m sure it would suit
To sign their death-warrants, and hang them to boot.


My lord! I’m amazed – have we routed the foe?
I shall govern again, then, if matters be so;
And as to the hanging, in short, to be plain,
I’ll hang them so well they’ll ne’er want it again.
With regard to the wretches who thump at my gates, 1
I’ll discharge all their dues with the rebel estates;
In less than three months I shall send a polacca
As deep as she’ll swim, sir, with corn and tobacco."



During the progress of more than a century and a quarter, the Virginians had fully appreciated the principles of civil freedom, and particularly that great truth that government possesses no inherent right to tax the people without their consent. At various times, the Virginia Assembly had resisted the attempts of Parliament to levy taxes upon them; and when, in 1764, the Stamp Act was proposed by ministers, they resolved never to submit to it. The following year [1765.] that act became a law. The Virginia House of Burgesses were in session, in the old capital at Williamsburg, when intelligence of the fact reached them. They talked boldly in private, but none were willing to act bravely in public, until near the close of the session, when Patrick Henry, the youngest member of the Assembly, and seated there for the first time only a few days before, took the lead. He had already led the Democratic members successfully against a paper-money scheme, the prime object of which was to cover up defalcations of Robinson, the treasurer of the colony. Now he exerted his powers in a broader field. Upon a scrap of paper torn from a fly-leaf of an old copy of "Coke upon Lyttleton," he wrote five resolutions, and submitted them to the House. The first declared that the original settlers of the colonies brought with them and transmitted to their posterity all the privileges, franchises, and immunities, enjoyed by the people of Great Britain. The second affirmed that these privileges, &c., had been secured to the aforesaid colonists by two royal charters granted by King James. The third asserted that taxation of the people by themselves, or by persons chosen by themselves, was the distinguishing characteristic of British freedom, and without which the ancient Constitution could not exist. The fourth maintained that the people of Virginia had always enjoyed the right of being governed by their own Assembly in the article of taxes, and that this right had been constantly recognized by the king and people of Great Britain. The fifth resolution, in which was summed up the essentials of the preceding four, declared "That the General Assembly of this colony have the sole right and power to levy taxes and impositions upon the inhabitants of this colony; and that every attempt to vest such power in any other person or persons whatsoever, other than the General Assembly aforesaid, has a manifest tendency to destroy British as well as American freedom."

Had lightning from the clouds fallen in the midst of that Assembly, they could not have been more startled. The boldest were astonished; the timid were alarmed; the loyal few were amazed and indignant. Many threats were uttered, and those who were willing to submit abused Mr. Henry without stint. A violent debate ensued, and Henry’s energies were aroused in all their majesty and might. His eloquence, sometimes deeply pathetic, at other times full of denunciatory invective, shook that Assembly like thunder peals. In the midst of his harangue he exclaimed, in clear bell-tones, "Cæsar had his Brutus – Charles the First his Cromwell; and George the Third –" "Treason!" cried the excited speaker; and "Treason! Treason!" was shouted from every part of the House. Henry did not falter for a moment. Rising to a loftier altitude, and fixing his eyes, beaming with the fire of exalted genius, upon Robinson, the speaker, he concluded the sentence with, "may profit by their example. If this be treason, make the most of it." 2

The moment Henry sat down, Randolph, Pendleton, Bland, Wythe, and others, who afterward became the boldest and most ardent opposers of British power, arose to their feet, and denounced the resolutions as disloyal, and dangerous to the public welfare. Their hearts were with Patrick Henry, but their heads adjudged his course to be premature and injudicious. Again Henry took the floor, and his eloquence, like an avalanche, crushed the most sturdy opposition. The resolutions were carried; the fifth by a majority of only one. They formed the first gauntlet of positive defiance cast at the feet of the British monarch, and gave the first impulse to the storm of revolution which soon swept over the land. In Henry’s absence, the next day, the resolutions were reconsidered and modified, and the fifth one stricken out. But manuscript copies were already on their way to other colonies, and the timidity of the Virginia Burgesses did not soften their force. 3

Francis Fauquier was at that time lieutenant governor, and the acting chief magistrate of Virginia. He was a man of great private worth, and, for his many virtues and righteous administration of affairs, he was exceedingly popular. As a man, he sympathized with the Legislature; but as the king’s representative, he was obliged to use his prerogative in suppressing disloyalty. Therefore, as soon as he was informed of the action of the Burgesses in adopting Henry’s resolutions, he dissolved the Assembly and ordered a new election. The eloquence of Henry seemed to have touched every heart in the Old Dominion; and every where the people re-elected the friends of the resolutions, and filled the seats of their opposers with tried patriots.

Within a fortnight after those resolutions went abroad, Massachusetts invited the other colonies to meet her in a general representative Congress at New York. Fauquier refused to call the Virginia Assembly together for the purpose of appointing delegates thereto. Confiding in the patriotism and integrity of the other colonies, the members elect signed a letter to the Congress, in which they promised to acquiesce in any action that might be had. That Congress was held in October [1765.], and the rights of the American colonies were so lucidly set forth in their declaration, that the people lacked no sure guide in their future course. 4

The Stamp Act was repealed in 1766, and Virginia, rejoicing with hope like her sister colonies, sent an address of thanks to the king and Parliament, and voted a statue to his majesty as a token of her gratitude and love. 5 Like her sister colonies, she was doomed to disappointment, and her sincere loyalty was speedily transformed into open rebellion. From the repeal of the Stamp Act until the close of the Revolution, Virginia wrought hand in hand with the other colonies in efforts to obtain justice and maintain popular liberty.

Governor Fauquier died early in 1768, and was succeeded by Lord Botetourt. That gentleman bore to his people assurances that the king and Parliament were sincerely desirous of doing justice to the colonies, and that all the obnoxious acts would be speedily repealed. These assurances, and the excellent character and conduct of the governor, allayed the excitement in Virginia for a while, and her people looked forward to seasons of prosperity and repose. Their dream was of short duration. Soon the intelligence came that the engine of oppression was again at work, and new schemes for harassing the colonies were maturing. Virginia was much excited when its Legislature for 1769 convened. Among its members was Thomas Jefferson, of Albemarle county, a young lawyer of eminent abilities, liberality of views, and boldness of character. His first act in the Assembly evinced his appreciation of freedom; he proposed a law which should give the masters of slaves unrestricted right to emancipate them. This motion did not succeed, but it drew the attention of the Assembly to his talents, and he was employed in preparing the counter-resolutions, and addresses of the House of Burgesses [May, 1769.], in opposition to those of the Lords and Commons, then just received. In these resolutions Virginia displayed a manifest disposition to consider the cause of Massachusetts a common one. The governor, on being informed of their proceedings, as in duty bound, and conformable to his oath, dissolved them.


The next day they met in the Apollo room of the Raleigh tavern; formed themselves into a voluntary convention; drew up articles of association against the use of any merchandise imported from Great Britain {original text has "Britian".}; signed and recommended them to the people, and then repaired to their several counties. All were re-elected except those who had declined assent to the proceedings of the majority. 7 Botetourt, unlike some of the royal governors, did not make the matter a personal consideration, lose his temper, and act unjustly and unwisely; but, following the prescribed line of duty, he courteously endeavored to prevent rebellious proceedings and to allay excitement. He was esteemed by all parties; and, as we have seen, his death, which occurred in 1771, was considered a public calamity, and mourned as a public bereavement.


Botetourt was succeeded by John Murray, earl of Dunmore, who was the last royal governor of Virginia. He had succeeded Sir Henry Moore as Governor of New York, in 1770, and on the death of Botetourt, was transferred to Virginia. During his delay in leaving New York, the government was administered by William Nelson, president of the council of the colony, and father of one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Dunmore did not arrive in Virginia until the summer of 1772. A knowledge of his character, which preceded him, made the Virginians uneasy. He was a Scotch nobleman; descended from an ancient family; full of aristocratic ideas; deficient in sound judgment and that common sense which is so essential in public life, and possessed of an irritable temper and vindictive spirit. In manners and feelings he was the reverse of Botetourt, and before he was fairly seated in the official chair, he had quarreled with some of the leading men of the colony. He evinced a disposition to disregard the rules of colonial law, and to act independent of the wishes of the people.

In March, 1773, the House of Burgesses received copies of an address and resolutions from the Massachusetts Assembly, in which the grievances of that colony were set forth; and they expressed their concurrence and sympathy with their brethren in New England. Jefferson, Henry, Richard Henry Lee, and Peyton Randolph, the speaker, urged immediate and bold action, and through their efforts a committee of vigilance was appointed [March 10, 1773.] to obtain the most clear and authentic intelligence of all such acts of Parliament or ministry as might affect the rights of the colonies. This committee was also authorized to open a correspondence and communication with the other colonies. 9

They were about to adopt other resolutions equally unsubmissive to royal rule, when their proceedings were cut short by Dunmore, who dissolved the Assembly. The committee of correspondence met, however, the next day, and dispatched a circular letter containing the resolutions to the speakers of the several Colonial Assemblies. The General Court of Massachusetts responded by the appointment of a committee of fifteen, instructing them to urge the other colonies to take similar action. The New England colonies, and Pennsylvania and Maryland, did so, and thus was formed the first sound link of our confederacy.


The Boston Port Bill, 11 which was to go into effect on the first of June, 1774, had excited the greatest sympathy for the people of Boston throughout the colonies, and on the twenty-fourth of May the Virginia Assembly adopted strong resolutions of condolence, and appointed the first of June to be observed as a fast. Dunmore was highly offended, officially, and the next day dissolved them by a verbal proclamation. 12 The delegates, eighty-nine in number (of whom Washington was one), immediately assembled in the Apollo room of the Raleigh tavern, organized themselves into a voluntary convention, and prepared an address to their constituents, in which they declared that an attack upon one colony was an attack upon all. They recommended several important measures. Among other propositions was one for a General Congress, a proposition which was made by Massachusetts six days afterward, 13 and being immediately sent forth, was heartily concurred in by all the other colonies except Georgia. Twenty-five of the delegates remained at Williamsburg to engage in the religious services of the appointed fast-day. While awaiting its arrival [May 29.], they received an account of a town meeting in Boston, at which the inhabitants of the colonies were invited to enter into a general non-importation agreement. The twenty-five delegates did not feel authorized to act in a matter of so much gravity, and therefore only recommended, by a circular, that the Burgesses should meet again in convention at Williamsburg on the first of August [1774.]. Pursuant to this recommendation, all the Burgesses who met at the Raleigh were present on that day. They adopted resolutions to import no more slaves, nor British goods, nor tea; and, if colonial grievances were not speedily redressed, to export no more tobacco to England, and not to deal with any merchants who should refuse to sign the agreement. They recommended the cultivation of such articles of husbandry, instead of tobacco, as might form a proper basis for manufactures of all sorts; and also particularly recommended the improvement of the breed of sheep, the multiplying of them, and the killing of as few as possible. On the 5th of August they chose seven delegates to represent Virginia in the Continental Congress, appointed to meet on the fifth of September following, in Philadelphia, 14 and then adjourned, each pledged to do all in his power to effect the results contemplated in their proceedings.

While these clouds of difficulty were gathering in the horizon of Virginia politics, and the colony was menaced with civil war, the Indians on the frontiers had commenced fierce hostilities, and were driving civilization back from its adventurous settlements west of the Blue Ridge. Although several times chastised, they were still bold. In 1764, Colonel Bouquet, 15 having dispersed the Indians besieging Detroit, passed into the Wyandot country, by the way of Sandusky Bay, and compelled the head men of the tribes to agree to a treaty of peace. The Shawnees and Delawares in the Ohio county still continued hostile. Bouquet, the same year, marched from Fort Pitt to the Muskingum, awed the Indians, procured the restoration of prisoners in their hands, and made a treaty of peace with them, and for several years they kept comparatively quiet, though exhibiting unmistakable signs of deadly hostility.

Early in 1774, the hatchet again fell with terrible fury upon the frontier settlements of Virginia, and its keenness was heightened by the encouragement which the savages received from a few white scoundrels, who hoped to gain personal advantage in the contest. The scheme which Governor Dunmore afterward entered into for banding these forest tribes against the colonists, has left upon his memory the suspicion that even thus early, in view of impending hostilities, he had tampered with them, through his agents, and made them bold. History gives no positive warrant for suspicions so damning, and we may charitably hope that his expedition against the Indians, in the summer of that year [1774.], was undertaken with a sincere desire to save the colony from their cruel incursions. It is true, Dunmore was very tardy in his preparations, and his expedition did not march until the voice of his indignant people compelled him to go, and alert suspicion made him fearful of its consequences.

The chief rendezvous of the hostile Indians was on the Sciota, within the limits of the present Pickaway county, Ohio. There were three principal towns, and against these Dunmore marched with a force of three thousand men, early in August [1774.]. The army proceeded in two divisions; one composing the left wing, under Colonel Andrew Lewis, the other led by Dunmore in person. The left wing struck the Great Kanawha, and followed that stream to the Ohio; the right wing passed the mountains of the Potomac gap, and reached the Ohio a little above Wheeling. The plan of the campaign was to form a junction before reaching the Indian villages. Lewis encamped on the site of Point Pleasant, at the mouth of the Great Kanawha, on the sixth of October. In expectation of the approach of Dunmore, he cast up no intrenchments. In this exposed situation, he was attacked on the morning of the tenth, by one thousand chosen warriors of the western confederacy under the celebrated Cornstalk, who came from the Pickaway Plains to confront Colonel Lewis before the other division should join him. 16 So stealthily had the Indians approached, that within one hour after Lewis’s scouts discovered those of the enemy a general battle was in progress.

Colonel Charles Lewis, a brother of the general, with three hundred men, received the first assault. He and his aid, Hugh Allen, were mortally wounded, and so overwhelming in numbers and fierce in aspect were the assailants, that his line broke and gave way. 17 At this moment, a party under Colonel Fleming attacked the enemy’s right, and, being sustained by a reserve under Colonel Field, the Indians were driven back. The battle continued with unabated fury until one o’clock in the afternoon, the Indians slowly retreating from tree to tree, while the gigantic Cornstalk encouraged them with the words, "Be strong! Be strong!" 18 The peculiarity of the ground, it being upon a point at the junction of two rivers, made every retreat of the enemy advantageous to the Virginians, because as their line extended from river to river, forming the base of an equilateral triangle, it was lengthened, and consequently weakened. The belligerents rested within rifle shot of each other, and kept up a desultory fire until sunset. The battle was a desperate one, and neither party could fairly claim the victory. The Virginians lost one half of their commissioned officers, and fifty-two privates were killed. The Indians lost, in killed and wounded, about two hundred and thirty. During the night they retreated, but Lewis did not think it prudent to pursue them. Captain William Russell was left in command of a sufficient garrison at Point Pleasant until late in the summer of 1775, when further hostilities with the Indians seemed improbable.


EXPLANATION Of THE MAP. – a a, the ancient works at Circleville; b, Logan’s cabin near; c, Old Chillicothe; d, Black Mountain; e, Cornstalk’s town; f, Squaw’s town; g, Council-house; h, the point where Dunmore and Colonel Lewis met; i, the camp of Colonel Lewis; j, Camp Lewis; m, High Lands.


On the day after the battle, Colonel Lewis received orders from Dunmore to hasten on toward the Shawnee towns, on the Sciota, and join him at a point eighty miles distant. Dunmore was ignorant of the battle, and the weakened condition of Lewis’s division. But the latter did not hesitate. Leaving a small garrison at Point Pleasant, he pressed onward, through an unbroken wilderness to the banks of Congo Creek, in Pickaway township, within striking distance of the Shawnee or Shawanese towns. The principal village of the Indians stood upon the site of the present borough of Westfall, on the west bank of the Sciota, and was called Old Chillicothe, there being other towns of the same name. When Colonel Lewis arrived, he found Dunmore and his party in the neighborhood. The governor had descended the Ohio to the mouth of the Great Hockhocking, where he built a redoubt or block-house, and called it Fort Gower. 20 From this point he marched up that stream into the Indian country, and when Lewis arrived, he was encamped on the left bank of Sippo Creek, about seven miles southwest of the present village of Circleville. Dunmore called his station Camp Charlotte, 21 and hither the Indians, dispirited by their engagement with Colonel Lewis, and perceiving the destruction of their towns to be inevitable, came to treat for peace. Dunmore had been met by a flag of truce from the Indians, borne by a white man named Elliot, 22 and his readiness to treat with the enemy, instead of striking a blow of annihilation, is adduced as evidence of his ulterior designs for making these warriors subservient to his use in enslaving Virginia. Colonel Lewis was greatly irritated because Dunmore would not allow him to crush the enemy within his grasp, and the Virginians, eager for revenge, almost mutinied. 23 The treaty was held in the presence of all the troops, amounting to twenty-five hundred in number. The Shawnee chiefs were quite numerous. Cornstalk was the principal speaker, and, in the course of his remarks, he adroitly charged upon the white people the causes of the war, in consequence, principally, of the murder of the family of Logan, a Mingo chief, a few months previously. 24 Logan, who was then at Old Chillicothe, disdained to meet the white men in council, and sat sullenly in his cabin while the treaty was in progress, Dunmore sent a messenger (John Gibson 25) to Logan, to invite him to attend the council. The chief took Gibson into the woods, and sitting down upon a mossy root, he told him the story of his wrongs, and, as that officer related, shedding many bitter tears. He refused to go to the council, but, unwilling to disturb the deliberations by seeming opposition, he sent a speech, in the mouth of Gibson, to Governor Dunmore. That speech, as preserved in print, 26 has been greatly admired for its pathetic eloquence. 27

At the conclusion of the treaty, Dunmore and his troops returned to Virginia, by the way of Fort Gower. At that place, the officers held a meeting on the fifth of November [1774.] for the purpose of considering the "grievances of British America." The proceedings were not at all palatable to Lord Dunmore, notwithstanding one of the resolutions highly complimented him personally. The speech of one of the officers, and the resolution which followed, notwithstanding the attestations of loyalty freely expressed, evidently implied a determination no longer to submit to royal rule. Dunmore was offended, and both parties returned home dissatisfied.

Before resuming our record of events in the progress of the Virginia colony toward independence, let us take a brief survey of succeeding Indian hostilities on the Virginia frontier, until the close of the war. It is a wide and romantic field, but we must not be tempted into minute details. We will note the most prominent features of those events, and refer the reader to fuller details drawn by other pens. I briefly referred to the Indian war in this region on page 264, volume i., and promised a more extended notice. Here I will fulfill that promise.

For a while after the treaty on the Sciota, the western Indians made no concerted attacks upon the white settlements on the frontiers; but small parties continually harassed those civil heroes who went over the Alleghany ranges and explored the broad forests which stretched between the Cherokees, Creeks, and Catawbas of the south, and the Shawnees, Delawares, and Wyandots, of the north, now the state of Kentucky. The first of these bold pioneers was Daniel Boone, 28 a hero in the truest sense of the term. He explored a portion of the wilderness west of the Blue Ridge as early as 1769, and for two years dwelt among the solitudes of the forests. Accustomed to the woods from earliest childhood, he found his highest happiness in the excitements of forest life, and in 1773 his own and a few other families accompanied him to the paradise lying among the rich valleys south of the Ohio. From that time, until the power of the western tribes was broken by the expedition under Major George Rogers Clark, Boone’s life was an almost continual conflict with the Indians. Engaged in Dunmore’s expedition in 1774, he was marked for vengeance by the savages; and when he built his little fort at Boonsborough [1775.], a few miles from Lexington, they viewed his labors with jealousy, and resolved to drive him from his foothold. Already the Indians had killed his eldest son, and now his wife and daughters, the first white women who ever stood upon the banks of the Kain-tuck-ee, were with him and engaged his solicitude. Kenton, Henderson, Logan, the M‘Afees, Hardin, Harrod, Hart, Ray, the Irvines, Bryants, Rogers, and others, soon followed; and in the course of seven or eight years the "western precinct of Fincastle county," as Kentucky was called, contained scores of adventurers planting small settlements along the water-courses. A record of the adventures of the settlers with the Indians would fill volumes. I have space to notice only a few of the prominent events of that period which have a direct relation with the history of our war for Independence. 29


In the spring of 1775, Daniel Boone erected a fort on the western bank of the Kentucky River, the site of the present village of Boonsborough. It was the first fortification built in that region; and the British, who had forts north of the Ohio, at once excited the jealous fears of the Indians respecting it. In December of that year [Dec. 24, 1775.], a party of Indians assailed it, but were repulsed; the little garrison lost but one man. On the fourteenth of July following, one of Boone’s daughters, and two other girls who were amusing themselves near the fort, were caught and carried away by the Indians, but were speedily rescued. 31

In 1774, Harrodsburg, in Mercer county, Kentucky, was founded, and several log-cabins were built. Early in 1776, Colonel Benjamin Logan, and a small party of settlers, encamped about a mile west of the present town of Stanford, in Lincoln county, and erected a log fortification, which they called Logan’s Fort. These two settlements and Boone’s Fort were simultaneously attacked by a large party of Indians on the fifteenth of April, 1777. The assailants, having neither artillery nor scaling-ladders, made but little impression upon Boonsborough. A few men of the garrison were killed, and a quantity of corn and cattle belonging to the settlers was destroyed. Many of the assailants were killed.

On the fourth of July following, about two hundred warriors attacked Boonsborough with great vigor. The assailants were repulsed with the loss of seven of their number, while the garrison had but one man killed, and two wounded. The siege lasted two days and nights. On the ninth of September, 1778, a third attack was made upon Boonsborough. The Indians, five hundred in number, were led by Captain Duquesne, and other skillful Canadian officers. When the enemy appeared in front of the fort, the British flag was displayed, and a formal demand for the surrender of the fortress was made. Boone requested an allowance of two days for consideration. It was granted, and in the mean while the garrison, consisting of only fifty men, prepared for a vigorous defense. Boone assembled the defenders, and set before them the actual state of things. To surrender might insure them their lives, but they would lose all their property; to resist and be overcome, would result in the death of every man, woman, and child. Every one resolutely determined to defend the fort to the last, and this decision Boone communicated to Captain Duquesne. The Canadian was chagrined, and sought to obtain by stratagem what he feared he might not accomplish by force. 32 The siege was commenced, and lasted nine days, when the assailants, having lost many of their number, and unable to make any impression on the fort, retreated suddenly and in great confusion. This was the last time that Boonsborough was assailed, for the garrisons of other forts between it and the Ohio were rapidly augmenting in numbers and strength, and made it dangerous for the enemy to penetrate far into Kentucky.

With the single exception of Dunmore’s expedition in 1774, hostilities west of the Alleghanies were nothing but a series of border conflicts, each little party acting upon its own responsibility, until 1778, when Major George Rogers Clarke 33 led a regular expedition against the frontier posts of the enemy in the wilderness. Clarke first went toward Kentucky in 1772, when he paddled down the Ohio with the Reverend David Jones, then on his way to preach the Gospel to the Western Indians. He was at once impressed with the importance of that fertile region, and the necessity of making it a secure place for settlements. His mind was clear and comprehensive; his personal courage of the truest stamp; his energies, physical and mental, always vigorous, and he soon became an oracle among the backwoodsmen. During the years 1775 and 1776, he traversed vast regions of the wilderness south of the Ohio, studied the character of the Indians chiefly from the observations of others, and sought to discover a plan by which a tide of emigration might flow unchecked and secure into that paradise of the continent. He soon became convinced that the British garrisons at Detroit, Kaskaskia, and Vincennes, were the nests of those vultures who preyed upon the feeble settlements of the west, and deluged the virgin soil with the blood of the pioneers. Virginia, to which province this rich wilderness belonged, was at that time bending all her energies in advancing the cause of independence within her borders east of the Alleghanies, and the settlers west of the mountains were left to their own defense. Major Clarke, convinced of the necessity of reducing the hostile forts in the Ohio country, submitted a plan for the purpose to the Virginia Legislature, in December, 1777. His scheme was highly approved, and Governor Henry and his council were so warmly interested, that all the preliminary arrangements were soon made. Major Clarke received two sets of instructions, one public, ordering him to "proceed to the defense of Kentucky," the other private, directing an attack upon the British fort at Kaskaskia. Twelve hundred pounds were appropriated to defray the expenses of the expedition and the commandant of Fort Pitt was ordered to furnish Clarke with ammunition, boats, and other necessary equipments. His force consisted of only four companies, but they were all prime men. Early in the spring [1778.] they rendezvoused upon Corn Island, at the Falls of the Ohio, six hundred and seven miles by water, below Fort Pitt. Here Clarke was joined by Simon Kenton, 34 one of the boldest pioneers of the west, then a young man of twenty-two years. He had been acting as a spy for two years previously; henceforth he was engaged in a more honorable, but not more useful service.

From Corn Island 35 they proceeded in boats to the mouth of the Tennessee River, and landed upon the site of Paducah. There they met a party of hunters from Kaskaskia and obtained valuable information. They reported that M. Rocheblave, commander of the garrison at Kaskaskia, was an exceedingly vigilant officer, and kept spies continually on the alert to discover the approach of Kentuckians. The hunters believed that a surprise might be effected, and they offered to accompany the expedition as guides. Their services were accepted, and the expedition having dropped down the Ohio to a proper point on the Illinois shore, and concealed their boats, commenced their march through the wilderness to Kaskaskia. 36 They arrived in the vicinity of the town toward the evening of the fourth of July [1778.], where they remained until dark, unperceived by any of the people. Before midnight the town and garrison were in possession of the Kentuckians. Philip Rocheblave, the British commander, was surprised in bed, like Delaplace at Ticonderoga. His wife, whom the polite Kentuckians would not disturb, secured or destroyed most of his papers. The rest of his papers, which revealed the fact that the British were stimulating the Indians to hostilities, were sent, with the commandant himself, to Williamsburg, in Virginia. It was a bloodless conquest, and in the course of a few days the prudent policy of Clarke secured the respect of the French people, and they accepted the government of Virginia with satisfaction.

About sixty miles further up the Mississippi was Cahokia, a village coeval in settlement with Kaskaskia. It was a place of considerable trade, and a depository of British arms for distribution among the Indians. Clarke dispatched Captain Joseph Bowman with a little less than two companies [July 8.], to reduce that post, and also to capture two other small towns. Several inhabitants of Kaskaskia gladly accompanied them. The expedition was successful at the small towns, and reached Cahokia unobserved. The surprise was complete. The inhabitants were greatly alarmed; but when the Kaskaskia people explained the whole matter, the fears of the people were changed to emotions of joy, and the American flag was saluted with three hearty huzzas. They took the oath of allegiance, and the conquest was thorough. The region thus brought under the sway of Virginia was erected into a county, and named Illinois.

The stronger and more important post of Vincennes 37 was yet unsubdued, and Clarke felt that the object of his mission would be but half accomplished if he did not gain possession of that place. It was necessary to garrison Kaskaskia and Cahokia, in order to retain them, and to do this would so weaken his little army that he could scarcely hope for victory in an attack upon Vincennes, unless he should be as successful in effecting a surprise as he had in capturing the posts already in his possession. While thus perplexed, and doubting what course to pursue, he communicated his desires to Father Gibault, a French priest, who agreed to endeavor to bring those inhabitants of Vincennes, over whom he had pastoral charge, to the support of the American cause. The influence of the priest was successful; the inhabitants arose in the night and cast off their allegiance to the British, expelled the garrison from the fort, and pulled down the English standard. The American flag floated in triumph over the ramparts in the morning [Aug. 1778.].

Major Clarke, just promoted to colonel by the Virginia authorities, now applied himself to the pacification of the Indian tribes. His reputation as a warrior was great among them, and, as the qualities of a hero inspires the Indian with respect, his influence was also great. He was a successful negotiator, and the prejudices of many of the tribes against the provincials were subdued. While thus engaged, he received no news from Vincennes, and he began to have fears for its safety. On the twenty-ninth of January, 1779, he received intelligence that Governor Hamilton had marched an expedition against that place, from Detroit, nearly a month previously, and that the town was again in possession of the enemy. He was also informed that another and more formidable expedition was to be sent out in the spring to recapture Kaskaskia, and to assail the various posts on the Kentucky frontier. With his usual promptness and energy, Colonel Clarke prepared to anticipate the enemy, and strike the first blow. He planned an expedition against Vincennes, and on the seventh of February [1779.] commenced his march through the wilderness, with one hundred and seventy-five men. He had previously dispatched Captain Rogers and forty men, two four-pounders, and a boat, with orders to force their way up the Wabash to a point near the mouth of White River, and there wait for further orders. For a whole week Colonel Clarke’s party traversed the drowned lands of Illinois, suffering every privation from wet, cold, and hunger. When they arrived at the Little Wabash, at a point where the forks of the stream are three miles apart, they found the intervening space covered with water to the depth of three feet. The points of dry land were five miles apart, and all that distance those hardy soldiers waded the cold snow-flood, sometimes armpit deep! On the evening of the eighteenth [Feb., 1779.], they halted a little distance from the mouth of Embarrass Creek, and so near Vincennes that they could hear the booming of the evening gun. Here they encamped for the night, and the next morning at dawn, with their faces blackened with gunpowder to make themselves appear hideous, they crossed the river in a boat they had secured, and pushed on through the floods toward the town. Just as they reached dry land, in sight of Vincennes, they captured a resident, and sent him into the town with a letter demanding the immediate surrender of the place and fort. The people, taken by surprise, were greatly alarmed, and believed the expedition to be from Kentucky, composed of the fierce and strong of that advancing commonwealth. Had armed men dropped in their midst from the clouds, they could not have been more astonished, for it seemed impossible for this little band to have traversed the deluged country. The people were disposed to comply with the demand, but Governor Hamilton, who commanded the garrison in person, would not allow it. A siege commenced, and for fourteen hours a furious conflict continued. The next day the town and fort were surrendered, and the garrison were made prisoners of war. 38 The stars and stripes took the place of the red cross of St. George; a round of thirteen guns proclaimed the victory, and that night the exhausted troops of Colonel Clarke reposed in comfort.

While Boone and his companions were beating back the Indians from the Kentucky frontier, and Colonel Clarke was prosecuting his conquests and establishing the American power over the more westerly posts, Detroit was a position toward which the Continental Congress, and the Assemblies of Pennsylvania and Virginia, looked with anxiety, for it was the focal point of British influence over the Western Indians, and the rendezvous for expeditions against the frontier settlements. Colonel Hamilton, the commandant at that post, was actively engaged, from the commencement of the war, in winning the Indians over to the British interest, and in organizing parties to go out upon the war-path for blood and spoil. Among his most active emissaries were three Tories – Girty, M‘Kee, and Elliot, whom I have alluded to on page 264, of the first volume of this work. Governor Dunmore, too, was implicated, as early as the summer of 1775, in the nefarious business of exciting the Indian tribes to fall upon the white settlements on the frontiers of his province, hoping thereby to weaken the powers and resources of the people, then engaged in their struggle for independence. The capture of Connolly, his chief agent in the business, exposed the whole plot, and made the Continental Congress more vigilant, as well as more determined. 39 General Gage also appears to have been concerned in the measure, and there can not be a doubt that the representatives of royalty in British America were secretly engaged, after the battle of Bunker Hill, in a grand scheme for uniting the various Indian tribes, and bringing them down upon the white people with the desolating fury of a tornado. The fidelity of some of the Indian chiefs impeded the consummation of the plan until countervailing measures were taken by Congress, and the darling project of Dunmore and his associates was frustrated.

Simon Girty, who with Elliot and M‘Kee had been confined by the patriots at Pittsburgh, burned with a spirit of revenge. He collected about four hundred Indian warriors at Sandusky, in the summer of 1777, and marched toward Limestone (now Maysville), on the Kentucky frontier. Fort Henry, 40 a small establishment near the mouth of Wheeling Creek (now Wheeling), was garrisoned by about forty men, under the command of Colonel Sheppard. The movements of Girty were known at that post, and scouts were kept on the alert. Girty’s design seemed to be to cross the Ohio and attack the Kentucky frontier; but, with dextrous caution, he pushed up the river, and, undiscovered by Sheppard’s scouts, he appeared before Fort Henry with his fierce followers early on the morning of the first of September. Fortunately for the settlers of Wheeling, then a scattered village of about twenty-five log-huts, they had intimations of savages being near on the evening previous, and all had taken refuge in the fort.

The first attack was made upon a reconnoitering party under Captain Mason. The Indians were ambushed, and fell upon the little band without a moment’s warning. More than one half of them perished. Captain Ogle, with twelve men, sallied out to the assistance of Mason, and only four of his company escaped. Bullet and tomahawk cut them down, and the garrison was thus reduced to only twelve men and youths, among whom Colonel Sheppard, and Ebenezer and Silas Zane, were the most prominent. 41 The women and children of the little settlement were within the pickets, overwhelmed with grief and fear, and all hope for the salvation of the fort and its inmates faded away. At that critical moment, Simon Girty appeared with a white flag, and demanded the unconditional surrender of the fort. Although the assailants outnumbered the garrison forty-fold, the beleaguered resolved to resist, and Colonel Sheppard promptly told the scoundrel that it should never be surrendered to him, nor to any other man, while there was an American left to defend it. Girty was enraged, and immediately ordered a siege. The Indians entered the log-houses near the fort for protection, and for six hours they kept up an ineffectual fire against the pickets (for they had no artillery), while the sharp-shooters within seldom sent a bullet upon a fruitless errand of death. At meridian the Indians fell back to the base of Wheeling Hill, and the firing ceased. This season of quiet was employed by the garrison in a bold attempt to bring some powder into the fort, for their ammunition was almost exhausted. This feat was accomplished by an intrepid young woman, a sister of the Zanes. 42

The assailants renewed the attack at half past two o’clock. Again they took possession of the cabins near the fort, and were thus covered from the fire of the Republicans. They also attempted to force the gate of the fort, but were obliged to abandon it after six of their number were shot down. Still they eagerly sought to secure their prey within. Approaching darkness did not end the conflict. The Indians converted a hollow maple log into a field piece, and after dark conveyed it within sixty yards of the fort. It was bound with chains, filled to the muzzle with stones, pieces of iron, and other missiles, and discharged against the gates of the fort. The log burst into a thousand fragments, and its projectiles were scattered in all directions. Several Indians were killed, but not a picket of the fort was injured. This failure of their artillery discouraged the assailants, and the conflict ceased for the night. At four o’clock in the morning [Sept. 28, 1777.], Colonel Swearingen and fourteen men arrived, and fought their way into the fort without losing a man; and at daybreak Major M‘Culloch arrived with forty mounted men. His followers entered the fort in safety, but he, being separated from his companions, was obliged to flee to the open country. He narrowly escaped falling into the hands of the Indians, who thirsted for his blood, for he was their most skillful enemy. They hated him intensely, and yearned to subject him to their keenest tortures. 43

Girty and his fellow-savages abandoned all hope of capturing the fort, after this augmentation of the garrison, and, setting fire to the houses and fences outside of the palisades, and killing about three hundred head of cattle belonging to the settlers, they raised the siege and departed for the wilderness. 44 Not a man of the garrison was lost during the siege; twenty-three of the forty-two in the fort were slain at the first attack, before the siege commenced. The loss of the enemy was between sixty and one hundred. 45 The defense of Fort Henry was one of the most remarkable for courage, on record, and deserves far more prominence in the catalogue of battles for independence than has generally been awarded to it by historians.

Early in 1778, Congress sent three commissioners to Pittsburgh to make observations, and determine the importance of Detroit as a place of rendezvous for the hostile tribes. They reported the activity of the commander, and his influence among the Indians, and represented the necessity of sending an expedition against that post immediately. Congress resolved to do so, but the financial embarrassments of the government, then fearfully increasing, rendered an expedition so expensive quite incompatible. The design was reluctantly abandoned, 46 and in lieu thereof, General Lachlin M‘Intosh, then commanding the western department, was ordered to march from Fort Pitt (his head-quarters), with a sufficient force, against the principal Indian towns in the Ohio country, and so to chastise them as to insure their future quiet. As soon as spring opened, M‘Intosh descended the Ohio River about thirty miles, and erected a fort at Beavertown, at the mouth of Beaver Creek, to intercept the war parties on their marches toward the settlements, and to make effective demonstrations against the savages when opportunities should occur. 47 After considerable delay, he marched toward the Sandusky towns, on Sandusky Bay, with one thousand men. The season was so far advanced when they reached the Tuscarawas, that General M‘Intosh thought it imprudent to advance farther. He built a fort about half a mile below the present village of Bolivia, and named it Fort Laurens, in honor of the then president of Congress [1778.]. Leaving a garrison of one hundred and fifty men under the command of Colonel John Gibson (the embassador to poor Logan), he returned to Fort Pitt barren of the honors of an Indian fight.

On the first of June, 1780, an expedition was sent out from Detroit, composed of six hundred Canadians and Indians under Colonel Byrd. They took with them six pieces of artillery; their destination was some of the stations upon the Licking River, in Kentucky. Colonel Byrd went up the Licking as far as the forks, where he landed his artillery, and erected some huts upon the site of Falmouth. Gathering strength on his way, he marched from the forks, with nearly one thousand men and his artillery, for Ruddell’s Station, on the south fork of the Licking, three miles below the junction of Hinkston and Stoner’s branches of that stream. The Kentucky stockades, all wanting cannons, were quite powerless before the artillery of Colonel Byrd, and Captain Ruddell at once surrendered, after being assured that the people within should not be made the prisoners of the Indians. When the gates were opened, however, Byrd could not restrain his savage allies. They rushed in, and seizing men, women, and children promiscuously, claimed them as their own, and thus families were separated during a long captivity. All the property was destroyed or carried away, and the place was made a desolation. Elated with their success, the Indians proposed an attack upon Martin’s, Bryant’s, and Lexington Stations, all lying between the Licking and Kentucky Rivers. Colonel Byrd endeavored to dissuade them, for his humanity was shocked by the scenes at Ruddell’s. The chiefs finally consented to allow all future prisoners to be under the control of their commander. The army then proceeded to Martin’s Station, captured it without opposition, and, bearing away all the property found there, took up its line of march toward the fork of the Licking, leaving Bryant’s and Lexington unmolested, except by marauding parties of Indians, who drove away many horses from each place. The whole expedition returned to Detroit by the way of the Great Miami, on the banks of which, at the point where they commenced their land journey toward Detroit, they concealed their artillery.

This incursion from Detroit aroused all the energies of Colonel Clarke. He visited Richmond in December [1780.], and urged the Provincial Assembly to furnish him with means to chastise the enemy for his insolence. While there, Arnold invaded the state by way of the James River, and Clarke took a temporary command under Baron Steuben. He afterward succeeded in raising a considerable force for an expedition against Detroit, and the corps destined for the service was ordered to rendezvous at the Falls of the Ohio (Louisville), on the fifteenth of March [1781.]. Clarke was promoted to the rank of a brigadier, and joined his troops at the appointed time. Unexpected difficulties arose. Cornwallis was menacing all Virginia with desolation; the financial resources of Congress were at their lowest point, and operations on the western frontier were confined to defensive acts. Like a lion chained, Clarke beheld the British and their forest allies lording it over the chosen country of the pioneers, who were without strength sufficient to drive them away, or hardly able to beat them back when they came as assailants. Finally, the disastrous battle at the Blue Licks, which spread a pall of gloom over Kentucky, aroused his desponding spirit, and he raised a war-cry which awoke responsive echoes every where in that deep forest land. 48 That battle was fought in August [Aug. 19, 1782.], and in September, General Clarke, at the head of more than one thousand mounted riflemen, assembled at the mouth of the Licking (opposite the present city of Cincinnati), crossed the Ohio, and pressed forward to the Indian towns on the Sciota. He was accompanied by Simon Kenton as pilot, and who had command of a company on that occasion. The natives fled before the invaders and escaped; but five of their villages, and numerous corn-fields and orchards, were laid waste. The Kentuckians returned to the mouth of the Licking on the fourth of November. 49 This expedition had a salutary effect; it awed the savages, and no formidable Indian war party ever afterward invaded Kentucky. For more than ten years subsequently, the Indians on our northwestern frontier were troublesome, and it was not until Wayne and a powerful force desolated their country [1794.], and wrung from them a general treaty of peace [1795.], that they ceased their depredations.

Let us return from the "dark and bloody ground" west of the Alleghanies, and view the progress of events at Williamsburg and vicinity.

We left Governor Dunmore and the Virginia House of Burgesses in open rupture. The governor had dissolved them, and they had assembled at the Raleigh tavern in convention, and appointed delegates to represent Virginia in the approaching General Congress. That Congress met; its acts have elsewhere been noticed in detail. 50 The breach between the governor and the people continued to widen; the affairs of Great Britain and her American colonies rapidly approached a crisis. Every day the power of royal governors became weaker; every day the representatives of the people became bolder. To sagacious minds war appeared inevitable, and preparations for it were regarded as acts of common prudence. In the Virginia Legislature, convened at Richmond in March, 1775, Patrick Henry, in a series of resolutions, recommended a levy of volunteer troops in each county, for the better defense of the country; in other words, a standing army of minute-men, pledged to the republican cause. He had seen with impatience the temporizing spirit of his colleagues, and he determined to test their courage and patriotism by a bold proposition in the form of resolutions. Like his famous Stamp Act resolutions ten years before, these filled the House with consternation. His proposition was considered as premeditated rebellion, and it was opposed as rash and premature by several who afterward became his most zealous co-workers. Opposition aroused all the fire of Henry’s genius, and he poured forth a flood of brilliant eloquence, such as the Virginia Assembly had never heard [March 23, 1775.]. He closed his speech with a loud cry of "GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME DEATH!" and when he sat down, not a murmur of applause or of disapprobation was heard. 51 "After the trance of a moment," says Wirt, "several members started from their seats. The cry to arms! seemed to quiver on every lip, and gleam from every eye. Richard Henry Lee arose, and supported Mr. Henry with his usual spirit and eloquence, but his melody was lost amid the agitations of that ocean which the master spirit of the storm had lifted on high. That supernatural voice still sounded in their ears, and shivered along their arteries. They heard, in every pause, the cry of Liberty or Death! They became impatient of speech – their souls were on fire for action." The resolutions were adopted by a large majority.

During the spring of 1775, secret orders came from the British ministry to the royal governors to remove the military stores out of the reach of the colonists, if there should appear symptoms of rebellion. The attempt by Governor Gage, of Boston, to execute their orders, produced the conflicts at Lexington and Concord [April 19, 1775.]; and a similar attempt made by Governor Dunmore, on the very next day [April 20.], brought the Virginians out in open rebellion. The British man-of-war Magdalen, Captain Collins, was lying at anchor in the York River, a little below Williamsburg, and at midnight Dunmore had the powder in the old magazine secretly removed to that vessel. The movement was discovered, and at dawn the minute-men of Williamsburg assembled, with their arms, and were with difficulty restrained from seizing the governor. The people also assembled, and sent a respectful remonstrance to Dunmore, complaining of the act as specially wrong at that time, when a servile insurrection was apprehended. Dunmore made an evasive reply. He pretended that he feared a slave insurrection in a neighboring county, and said that in case a rising of the negroes in James City county should occur, the powder should be restored. His reply was quite unsatisfactory, and the people demanded the immediate surrender of the ammunition. Patrick Henry was then at his home in Hanover county. When intelligence of the movement reached him, he assembled a corps of volunteers at New Castle, 52 and marched immediately for the Capitol to secure the treasury from a like outrage, and to procure a restoration of the powder. His corps augmented on its march, and numbered about one hundred and fifty well-armed men when he arrived at Doncaster’s ordinary, within sixteen miles of the capital. There he was met by some of the Virginia delegation to Congress, on their way to Philadelphia, and was informed that his approach had frightened the governor. There he also met Corbin, the receiver-general, who came with authority from the governor to compromise the matter. Henry demanded and received the value for the powder (three hundred and thirty pounds), and immediately sent it to the treasury at Williamsburg. 53 The volunteers were disbanded [May 4, 1775.], and they returned to their homes. Henry departed for Philadelphia a week afterward, he being a delegate to Congress.

Dunmore was greatly irritated by the result, and menaced the people. He swore by the living God, that if any of his officers were injured, he would raise the royal standard, enfranchise all the negroes, and, arming them against their masters, lay the city of Williamsburg in ashes. He also issued a proclamation [May 6.] against "a certain Patrick Henry, of the county of Hanover, and a number of deluded followers," and forbade all persons countenancing them in the least. He converted his palace into a garrison, filled it with his adherents, and surrounded it with cannon. The injudicious course of Dunmore, especially his savage threats and the fortifying of his palace, greatly exasperated the people throughout the colony. Six hundred inhabitants of the upper country, full armed, assembled at Fredericksburg, and offered their services to defend the Capitol against the governor. They were restrained from marching to Williamsburg by the prudent advice of Randolph and Pendleton, who begged them to remain quiet until the Continental Congress should adopt some relative measure. 54 In every county committees of vigilance and safety were formed, and at public meetings the conduct of Patrick Henry was loudly applauded. Some of Dunmore’s letters to ministers were brought to light, and, like Governor Hutchinson on a similar account, he was despised for the meanness which they exhibited. 55 Dunmore unwittingly raised a whirlwind which swept away every vestige of his power.

In the midst of the excitement, the governor unexpectedly convened the Assembly [June1.]. His object was to obtain the approbation of the Burgesses for a conciliatory plan proposed by Lord North. That plan was as specious and deceptive as the king’s gracious speech against which Patrick Henry had warned them, and the Burgesses rejected it. 56 While the Assembly was in session, some inconsiderate young men attempted to procure arms from the magazine [June 5.], and one of them was wounded by a spring gun, placed there by order of the governor. This event exasperated the people, and a large concourse assembled, broke open the magazine, and took away most of the arms. Leading members of the Burgesses induced them to return them, and the next day the keys of the magazine, by order of the governor, were delivered to the speaker of the House. On examination, several barrels of powder were found under the floor, evidently designed by Dunmore to blow up the magazine. This discovery augmented the excitement, and when, on the seventh [June, 1775.], a rumor prevailed that Captain Collins, of the Magdalen, had slipped her cables, and was coming up the river with one hundred marines in boats, the citizens flew to arms. The report was untrue, but the readiness of the people to seize arms on every occasion of alarm, was a lesson of deep import to Dunmore; and fearing personal violence, he left Williamsburg, with his family, early on the morning of the eighth, and proceeded to Yorktown, where he went on board the Fowey man-of-war. He was the first royal representative who "abdicated government here."

From the Fowey, Lord Dunmore sent letters, messages, and addresses, to the House of Burgesses, and received the same in return. They were mutually spirited. Finally, when the necessary bills were passed, and the House asked him to return to Williamsburg to sign them, at the same time pledging their honor for the safety of his person, he refused, and demanded that they should present themselves at his present residence (the ship-of-war) for signature. Of course they would not comply, for the demand was unwarrantable. They then adjourned [July 18.] until October, after having appointed a committee of the delegates, as a permanent convention, to whom was intrusted the unlimited powers of government. 57 That committee immediately took measures to raise a sufficient armed force to defend the colony. 58 Dunmore’s flight, and this act of the people, terminated royal power in Virginia.

Early in the autumn, the British fleet, with Dunmore, proceeded to Norfolk, where his lordship established his head-quarters and put his threat of hostility into execution. He unfurled the royal ensign from the Fowey, and proclaimed freedom to all the slaves who should repair to it and bear arms for the king [Nov. 7, 1775.]. He also issued a proclamation declaring martial law throughout Virginia, and in various ways assumed an attitude of deadly hostility to the colony. The result we shall consider presently.

The Virginia committee of safety exercised its delegated powers with industry and energy. Having provided for the military defense of the colony, its attention was directed to a new organization of government. Elections were held throughout the state, and on the sixth of May following [1776.], a general convention of delegates assembled at Williamsburg. 59 The old House of Burgesses also met on the same day, but as they had not been summoned by a governor, they conceived that they could not act legally, and accordingly dissolved themselves. With that dissolution passed away forever the forms of royal rule in Virginia, and the convention exercised all the functions of government. By resolution, the delegates of Virginia in the Continental Congress, were instructed to propose a total separation from Great Britain [May 15, 1776.]. The convention also appointed a committee to prepare a Declaration of Rights, and a plan of government for the colony. The former was adopted on the twelfth of June, and the latter on the twenty-ninth. 60 On the fifth of July, it was decreed that the name of the king should henceforth be suppressed in all the public prayers, and the Church Liturgy was altered accordingly.


It was also ordained that the great seal of the commonwealth should be changed, upon which Virtue should be represented as the tutelar genius of the province, robed in the drapery of an Amazon, resting one hand upon her lance, and holding a naked sword in the other; trampling upon tyranny, under the figure of a prostrate man, having near him a crown fallen from his head, and bearing in one hand a broken chain, and in the other a scourge. Over the device was placed the word VIRGINIA; and beneath, Sic semper tyrannis. "Thus always to tyrants." 61 The convention adjourned on the fifth of July, and the government under the new Constitution was established. 62

The Declaration of Independence was proclaimed at Williamsburg on the twenty-fifth of July, amid great rejoicings, and from that time until 1779, when the government offices were removed to Richmond, the old Capitol of the commonwealth for eighty years, was the center of Revolutionary energy in Virginia.

Here let us close the chronicle and depart for Yorktown, the scene of the last great triumph of the patriot armies of the Revolution.



1 This refers to the fact that Dunmore was a great spendthrift, and always in debt. Such, in truth, was the case of a large proportion of the English nobility, at that time, who were engaged in public affairs, notwithstanding their large incomes. Mansfield here named, was the celebrated chief justice, who, because he gave the weight of his legal opinions, and the services of his pen against the colonists while struggling for independence, became very obnoxious to the Americans.

2 Wirt’s Life of Patrick Henry. Robinson had reasons for disliking Henry, and would gladly have crushed his influence in the bud. Already he had thwarted the speaker in his attempts to insure his power and put money into his own purse at the public cost, by defeating a bill which provided for new issues of paper money, on the loan-office plan. By virtue of his office as speaker, Robinson was treasurer of all sums voted by the Assembly, and he had the means of loaning money to his friends and to himself. He had already done so, and was now anxious to have a colonial loan-office established by which he might shift the responsibility of loaning to men unable to repay, from himself to the colony. Henry foresaw the evils of this scheme, and his wisdom was made manifest, when, in the following year. Robinson died, and his defalcations were made known.

3 See a notice of copies of these resolutions in Philadelphia, New York, and Boston, on page 466, volume i.

4 See page 464, volume i.

5 See page 472, volume i.

6 The room used for public meetings is in the rear building of the old Raleigh tavern at Williamsburg, and up to the day of my visit it had remained unaltered. Carpenters were then at work remodeling its style, for the purpose of making it a ball-room; and now, I suppose, that apartment, hallowed by so many associations connected with our war for independence, has scarcely an original feature left. Had my visit been deferred a day longer, the style of the room could never have been portrayed. Neat wainscoting of Virginia pine ornamented the sides below and partly between the windows, and over the fire-place, which was spacious. This view is from the entrance door from the front portion of the building. On the left were two large windows; on the right were two windows and a door; and on each side of the fire-place was a door opening into small passage ways, from the exterior. Through the door on the left is seen a flight of stairs leading to the dormitory. The walls were whitewashed, and the wood-work painted a lead color. In this room the leading patriots of Virginia, including Washington, held many secret caucuses, and planned many schemes for the overthrow of royal rule in the colonies. The sound of the hammer and saw engaged in the work of change seemed to me like actual desecration; for the Raleigh tavern, and the Apollo room are to Virginia, relatively, what Faneuil Hall is to Massachusetts.

7 Jefferson’s Memoirs, i., 4.

8 These are copied from the third volume of the Documentary History of New York, edited by Dr. E. B. O’Callaghan.

9 The committee consisted of Peyton Randolph, Robert Carter Nicholas, Richard Bland, Richard Henry Lee, Benjamin Harrison, Edmund Pendleton, Patrick Henry, Dudley Digges, Dabney Carr, Archibald Carey, and Thomas Jefferson. This committee was formed at a caucus held in a private room in the Raleigh tavern, the evening before it was proposed in the House. The caucus consisted of Patrick Henry, Richard Henry Lee, Francis Lightfoot Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Dabney Carr (his brother-in-law), and two or three others. Strong resolutions were drawn up, and it was proposed that Mr. Jefferson should submit them to the House. Desirous of bringing into notice the brilliant talents of Mr. Carr, Mr. Jefferson proposed that he should submit them. It was agreed to, and the next day Mr. Carr moved the adoption of the resolutions. They were carried, and the above committee of correspondence was appointed. Virginia and Massachusetts have disputed for the honor of originating committees of correspondence. It will be seen by referring to page 494, volume i., that the address of the people of Massachusetts, in which their grievances and their rights were stated, and which called out the action of the Virginia Burgesses when their committee of correspondence was formed, contained a recommendation to appoint such committees in the several towns in that province. In Massachusetts, this recommendation was made some six weeks before the action on the subject took place in the Virginia Legislature. Massachusetts was the first to suggest committees of correspondence within its own domain; Virginia was the first to appoint a committee for national correspondence. And yet each colony seems actually to have originated the idea; for, according to Peyton Randolph, the messengers from the respective Legislatures, bearing the resolutions of each, passed each other on the way. – See Jefferson’s letter to Samuel A. Wells, 1819, in the appendix to his Memoirs, page 100.

10 When I visited Williamsburg in December, 1848, the front part of the old Raleigh tavern had been torn down, and a building in modern style was erected in its place. The old tavern was in the form of an L, one portion fronting the street, the other extending at right angles, in the rear. Both parts were precisely alike in external appearance, and as the rear building was yet standing and unaltered, I am able to give a restored view of the Raleigh, as it appeared during the Revolution. The leaden bust of Sir Walter Raleigh, which graced the front of the old inn, now ornaments the new building.

11 See page 503, volume i.

12 Dunmore’s speech on that occasion was very brief. The following is a copy: "Mr. Speaker, and gentlemen of the House of Burgesses, – I have in my hand a paper published by order of your House, conceived in such terms as reflects highly upon his Majesty and the Parliament of Great Britain, which makes it necessary to dissolve you, and you are dissolved accordingly."

Notwithstanding this act on the part of the governor, the delegates did not omit to carry out arrangements which they had made for honoring Lady Dunmore with a ball on the 27th. Every mark of respect and attention was paid to Lord Dunmore and his lady on that occasion, as if nothing unpleasant had occurred. In fact, according to entries in Washington’s Diary, the matter was not made personal at all, for on the day after the dissolution of the Assembly, although he was one of the foremost in expressions of sympathy for the people of Boston, he remarks, "Rode out with the governor to his farm, and breakfasted with him there."

13 The latter colony could not have heard of the action of the former, and therefore the recommendation was as original with it as with Virginia.

14 The following were the delegates appointed: Peyton Randolph, Richard Henry Lee, George Washington, Patrick Henry, Richard Bland, Benjamin Harrison, and Edmund Pendleton. These were all present at the opening of the Congress in Carpenter’s Hall, and, as we have seen, Peyton Randolph was chosen the first president of that body.

15 Henry Bouquet was of French descent. He was appointed lieutenant colonel in the British army in 1756. He was active in his co-operations with General Forbes, and was highly esteemed by Amherst. That officer sent him to the relief of Fort Pitt, with stores, in 1763. He was attacked on his way by a powerful body of Indians, whom he defeated. In 1764, as noticed in the text, he was successful in the Ohio county. The following year he was appointed a brigadier. He died at Pensacola, Florida, in February, 1766.

16 Stuart, in his Memoir of Indian Wars, and Withers, in his Chronicles of Border Warfare, express the opinion, and adduce strong corroborating evidence of its truth, that Dunmore arranged the expedition in such a way, that the whole Indian force should fall upon and annihilate Lewis’s detachment, and thereby weaken the physical strength, and break down the spirit of the Virginians. It must be admitted that the fact of the great body of Indians leaving their towns and marching directly to attack Lewis, when Dunmore, with a force equally strong, was approaching in another direction, gives the color of probability to these suspicions. His subsequent conduct in inciting servile war in Virginia, shows that he was capable of so nefarious a scheme.

17 From a "Song of Lament," written at the time, I quote the following stanzas, which are more remarkable for pathos than poetry:

"Colonel Lewis and some noble captains,

Did down to death like Uriah go,
Alas! their heads wound up in napkins,
Upon the banks of the Ohio.

Kings lamented their mighty fallen
Upon the mountains of Gilboa,
And now we mourn for brave Hugh Allen,
Far from the banks of the Ohio.

Oh bless the mighty King of Heaven
For all his wondrous works below,
Who hath to us the victory given
Upon the banks of the Ohio."

18 Howison’s History of Virginia, ii., 15.

19 This little map shows a portion of the Pickaway Plains upon which the towns of the Shawnees were built. These plains are on the east side of the Sciota, and contain the richest body of land in Ohio. When first cultivated by the whites, the soil was a black vegetable mold, the result of long ages of decomposition, and for many years one hundred bushels of corn, or fifty bushels of wheat to the acre, was an average yield. This region was for many generations the principal rendezvous of Indian chiefs in council, in the Ohio country, and here many victims, brought from the frontier settlements, endured the torments of savage cruelty. – See Howe’s Historical Collections of Ohio, page 403.

20 This was in Athens township. Dunmore was a great admirer of Earl Gower, and in honor of that nobleman he named this, the first fort he ever erected.

21 Camp Charlotte, according to Charles Whittlesy, Esq. (from whose discourse before the Historical and Philosophical Society of Ohio, at Cincinnati, in 1840, the principal facts of this narrative have been gleaned), was upon the farm then (1840) owned by Thomas J. Winship, Esq. Camp Lewis was situated about four and a half miles southwest of Camp Charlotte.

22 The Tory companion of Girty and M‘Kee.

23 From concurrent testimony, it appears that suspicions of Dunmore’s treachery was rife in the camp, and for that reason Lewis was more disposed to disobey his orders. It is said that Dunmore, in the violence of his anger, because his subaltern insisted upon fighting, drew his sword upon Lewis, and threatened him with instant death if he persisted in his disobedience.

24 This circumstance is alluded to on page 107, where a copy of Logan’s speech to Dunmore, as preserved by Jefferson, is given. Mr. Brantz Mayer, in an able discourse delivered before the Maryland Historical Society in May, 1851, has adduced sufficient evidence to fully acquit Colonel Cresap of the charge made in the reported speech of Logan, and removed the foul stain of cold-blooded murder which has so long rested upon the fair fame of a brave and honorable man. It appears that, in the spring of 1774, Michael Cresap was upon the Ohio, below Wheeling, engaged in planting a settlement. Some pioneers on their way to make a settlement in Kentucky, under the auspices of Colonel George Rogers Clarke, resolved to attack an Indian town near the mouth of the Sciota, and solicited Cresap to command the expedition. He advised them to forbear, and, with him, they all repaired to Wheeling. Dr. Connelly, whom Lord Dunmore had appointed magistrate of West Augusta, sent Cresap word, on the 21st of April, that an Indian war was inevitable. Cresap, always vigilant, called a council of the pioneers, and on the 26th made solemn declaration of war against the Indians. They established a new post of defense, and the very next day two canoes, filled with painted savages, appeared. They were chased fifteen miles down the river, when a skirmish ensued. One man was killed, and several Indians were made prisoners. On the return of the pursuing party, an expedition against the settlement of Logan, * near the mouth of the Yellow Creek, thirty miles above Wheeling, was proposed. Cresap raised his voice against the proposed expedition, for the people of Logan’s settlement seemed rather friendly than otherwise. His council prevailed, and the pioneers proceeded that evening to Red Stone Old Fort, at the month of Dunlap’s Creek, on the Monongahela, now the site of Brownsville.

Other white people upon the Ohio were less cautious and humane. On the bank of the Ohio, nearly opposite Logan’s settlement, was the cabin of a man named Baker, where rum was sold to the Indians, which consequently augmented the savageism of their nature. On account of the shooting of two Indians near Yellow Creek, by a settler named Myers, the savages resolved to cross over and murder Baker’s family. A squaw revealed the plot to Baker’s wife, and twenty white men, armed, were concealed in and around his cabin. The next morning early, three squaws, with an infant and four Indian men, unarmed, came to Baker’s. The whole party of red people became intoxicated, an affray occurred, and the whole of the Indians were massacred, except the infant. Logan’s mother, brother, and sister, were among the slain. The vengeance of the chief was aroused, and during nearly all of that summer Logan was out upon the war-path. Michael Cresap was known to be a leader among the pioneers upon the Ohio, and Logan supposed he was concerned in the affair. The researches of Mr. Mayer show that, at the time of the massacre, Cresap was with his young family in Maryland, and had nothing to do with the matter. ** It is also demonstrated that at about the hour when the massacre took place, two canoes, with Indians painted and prepared for war, approached. The appearance fully corroborated the disclosures of the squaw, and justified the vigilance (but not the murder of women and unarmed men) by the neighbors of Baker.

* The Indian name of Logan, according to competent authority quoted by Mr. Mayer, was Ta-ga-jute, which means "short dress."

This squaw was the wife for the time of John Gibson, the Indian trader, to whom the reputed speech of Logan was communicated. Her infant, who was saved, was cared for by Gibson.

Logan evidently held Cresap responsible, as appears by the following note, quoted by Mr. Mayer, page 56. It was written with ink made of gunpowder and water, at the command of Logan, by William Robinson, who had been made a prisoner by that chief nine days before:


"CAPTAIN CRESAP. – What did you kill my people on Yellow Creek for? The white people killed my kin at Conestoga a great while ago, and I thought nothing of that. But you killed my kin again on Yellow Creek, and took my cousin prisoner. Then I thought I must kill too; and I have been three times to war since. But the Indians are not angry – only myself.

"July 21st, 1774.



This note was attached to a war-club, and left in the house of a man whose whole family had been murdered by the savages.

** Michael Cresap was the son of a hardy pioneer, who was one of the Ohio Company in 1752. He was born in Maryland (Alleghany county), on the 29th of June, 1742. While yet a minor, he married a Miss Whitehead. of Philadelphia. He became a merchant and trader, and at length a bold pioneer upon the Ohio. He raised a company of volunteers in the summer of 1774, and proceeded to aid his countrymen on the Ohio, when he was stopped by Connolly. Dunmore, however, valuing his service, sent him a commission of captain in the militia of Hampshire county, in Virginia. He then proceeded to the Ohio, and was engaged in Dunmore’s expedition of that year. When Gibson reported Logan’s speech, the charge against Cresap was laughed at as ridiculous; and George Rogers Clarke, who was standing by, said, "He must be a very great man, as the Indians palmed every thing that happened upon his shoulders."

Cresap returned to Maryland after the conclusion of Dunmore’s expedition, and early in the spring he again went to the Ohio, and almost to the wilderness of Kentucky. On his return, he was informed that he had been appointed to the command of a company of Maryland riflemen, raised by a resolution of Congress. Although suffering from ill health, he immediately went to Boston with his company, and joined the continental army under Washington. His sickness continuing, he left the army for his home among the mountains. At New York he sunk, exhausted, where he died on the 18th of October, 1775, at the age of thirty-three years. His remains were buried in Trinity church-yard with military honors, in the presence of a vast concourse of people, where they yet rest – See Mayer’s Discourse; also Jacob’s Life of Cresap. In the appendix to his Discourse, Mr. Mayer presents the results of patient investigation, concerning the authenticity of Logan’s speech. It appears probable that the sentiment was Logan’s, delivered, not as a speech or message, but as the natural expressions of the feelings of a man who felt that he had been greatly injured; the composition was evidently the work of some hand in Dunmore’s camp.

25 John Gibson, who afterward became a major general, was an Indian trader, and an active man among the settlers on the Ohio. Washington esteemed him as a brave and honest man, and in 1781 intrusted him with the command of the western military department. He was succeeded by General Irvine in 1782. He was a member of the Pennsylvania convention in 1788; was major general of militia, and was secretary of Indian territory during the administrations of Jefferson and Madison. He was at one time associate judge of the Common Pleas of Alleghany county, in Pennsylvania. Colonel George Gibson, who was mortally wounded at St. Clair’s defeat in Ohio, was his brother.

26 Gibson repeated the substance to Dunmore and other officers. They wrote it down, and, on returning to Williamsburg, caused it to be published in the Virginia Gazette, February 4, 1775. This was the name of the first newspaper published in Virginia. It was first issued at Williamsburg in 1736, a sheet about twelve inches by six in size. It was printed weekly by William Parks, at fifteen shillings per annum. No other paper was published in Virginia until the Stamp Act excitement in 1765-6. The Gazette was so much under government control, that Jefferson and others got Mr. Rind to come from Maryland and publish a paper, which was also called "The Virginia Gazette." It was professedly open to all parties, but influenced by none. This was the paper in which Logan’s speech was published. Another "Virginia Gazette" was printed at Williamsburg in 1775, and published weekly for several years. – See Thomas’s History of Printing.

27 Logan, whose majestic person and mental accomplishments were the theme of favorable remark, became a victim to the vice of intemperance. Earlier than the time when Dunmore called him to council, he was addicted to the habit. The last years of his life were very melancholy. Notwithstanding the miseries he had suffered at the hands of the white man, his benevolence made him the prisoner’s friend, until intemperance blunted his sensibilities, and in 1780 we find him among the marauders at Ruddell’s Station (see page 294). The manner of his death is differently related. The patient researches of Mr. Mayer lead me to adopt his as the correct one, as it was from the lips of an aged man who knew Logan well, and corresponds in all essential particulars with an account I received from an aged Mohawk whom I saw at Caghnawaga, twelve miles from Montreal, in the summer of 1848. His mother was a Shawnee woman, and when he was a boy, he often saw Logan. In a drunken phrensy near Detroit, in 1780, Logan struck his wife to the ground. Believing her dead, he fled to the wilderness. Between Detroit and Sandusky, he was overtaken by a troop of Indian men, women, and children. Not yet sober, he imagined that the penalty of his crime was about to be inflicted by a relative. Being well armed, he declared that the whole party should be destroyed. In defense, his nephew, Tod-kah-dohs, killed him on the spot, by a shot from his gun. His wife recovered from his blow.

28 Daniel Boone was born about the year 1734. His parents, who came from Bradninch, in England, went from Pennsylvania to the banks of the Yadkin River, in North Carolina, and his childhood was spent in the forest. In 1769, he was induced to accompany John Finley in the wilds west of the mountains, within the limits of the present state of Kentucky. From that period his own history is identified with that of the state. During his first visit there, he was captured by the Indians, but escaped within a week or ten days afterward. He started with his family for Kentucky in 1773, but, meeting Indians, they fell back and settled on the Clinch River. In 1774 he accompanied a party of surveyors to the Falls of the Ohio, and was active in expeditions against the Indians during that year. He removed to the locality of the present Boonsborough, and built a fort there in 1775. In the course of three or four years, many other settlers came to his vicinity. While at the Blue Lick, on the Licking River, making salt for his garrison, in February, 1778, he and his companions were captured by a party of Indians, and taken to Chillicothe. The Indians became much attached to him. A family adopted him as a son, according to the Indian custom, and an offer of $500 for his ransom, made by Governor Hamilton of Canada, was refused. Seven months after his capture, he learned that five hundred warriors were preparing to march against Boonsborough. He effected his escape on the 16th of July, and arrived home on the 20th, having traveled one hundred and sixty miles, and eaten only one meal, during four days. He arrived in time to assist in preparing the fort for the expected attack mentioned in the text. Boone’s wife, with his children, in the mean while, had returned to the house of her father, on the Yadkin, where Boone visited them in 1779. He remained there until the next year, when he returned to Kentucky. He subsequently accompanied George Rogers Clarke in his expeditions against the Indians on the Ohio, and was an active partisan until the close of the war. From that time, until 1798, he resided alternately in Kentucky and Virginia. In consequence of a defect in his title to lands in Kentucky, he was dispossessed of what was an ample estate, and made poor. The region he had explored, and helped to defend, now contained a population of half a million. Indignant because of being dispossessed, he shouldered his rifle, left Kentucky forever, and, with some followers, plunged into the interminable forests of Missouri, west of the Mississippi.

"Of all men, saving Sylla, the man-slayer,

Who passes for in life and death most lucky,
Of the great names, which in our faces stare,
The General Boone, backwoodsman of Kentucky,

Was happiest among mortals any where;
For, killing nothing but a bear or buck, he
Enjoyed the lonely, vigorous, harmless days,
Of his old age in wilds of deepest maze.

They settled upon the Little Osage in 1799, and the following year explored the head waters of the Arkansas. At the age of eighty years, accompanied by only two men (one white and the other black), he made a hunting excursion to the great Osage, where they trapped many beavers and other game. At about that time (1812), Boone addressed a memorial to the Legislature of Kentucky, setting forth that he owned not an acre of ground on the face of the earth, and, at the age of fourscore, had nowhere to lay his bones. He asked for a confirmation of his title to lands in Louisiana, given him by the Spanish government in 1794, before that territory was ceded to the United States. The Legislature instructed their delegates in Congress to solicit a confirmation of this grant, and two thousand acres were secured to him. He died on the twenty-sixth of September, 1820, at the age of almost ninety years. On that occasion, the Legislature of Missouri, then in session, agreed to wear the usual badge of mourning for thirty days, as a token of respect. The grave of Boone is by the side of that of his wife, in the Cemetery at Frankfort, Kentucky, but no stone identifies it to the eye of a stranger.

29 The reader, desirous of possessing minute information respecting this exciting portion of our early history, will be amply rewarded by a perusal of "Kentucky, its History, Antiquities, and Biography," an excellent work of nearly six hundred large octavo pages, with forty engravings, by Lewis Collins of Maysville, Kentucky.

30 This sketch is from a drawing by Colonel Henderson, and published in Collin’s Historical Collections of Kentucky, page 417. It was composed of a number of log-houses disposed in the form of an oblong square. Those at each corner, intended particularly for block-houses, were larger and stronger than the others. The length of the fort was about two hundred and fifty feet, and the width about one hundred and fifty feet.

31 Betsey and Frances Calloway, the youngest about thirteen years of age, were the companions of Miss Boone on that occasion. Their screams alarmed the people in the fort. It was just at sunset when the Indians carried off their victims. Boone and seven others started in pursuit. On the 11th, they came up with the savages, forty-five miles distant from Boonsborough, furiously attacked them, and rescued the girls, who had received no farther injury than that produced by the effect of excessive fright.

32 Duquesne, professing great humanity, proposed to Boone to send out nine of the principal men of his garrison to treat for an accommodation, the entire safety of the people within the fort being the basis. Unsuspicious of treachery, Boone and eight others went out to the camp of the enemy. While engaged in council, at a concerted signal, two strong warriors for each man attempted to sieze and carry off the delegation. The whole nine succeeded in releasing themselves, and escaping to the fort amid a shower of bullets from the enemy. Only one man was wounded. The siege immediately commenced.

33 George Rogers Clarke was born in Albermarle county, Virginia, on the nineteenth of November, 1752; little is known of his early youth. He was engaged in land surveying, and this led him to love a forest life. He commanded a company in Dunmore’s army in 1774, and then became better acquainted with the country west of the Alleghanies. In 1775 he first went to Kentucky, and, while there, he was placed in temporary command of armed settlers. His subsequent military career, until the close of the Revolution, is given in the text. Three years after the conclusion of the war (1786), Clarke commanded an expedition of one thousand men against the Indians on the Wabash. It was disastrous. Several years afterward, Genet, the French minister, undertook to raise and organize a force in Kentucky, for a secret expedition against the Spaniards on the Mississippi, and General Clarke accepted a commission as major general in the armies of France, to conduct the enterprise. Before it could be matured, Genet was recalled, and Clarke’s commission annulled. General Clarke never appeared in public life afterward. After suffering for many years from a rheumatic affection, he was prostrated by paralysis, and died near Louisville, in February, 1818, at the age of sixty-six.

34 Simon Kenton was born in Fauquier county, Virginia, April 3rd, 1755. His father was a native of Ireland; his mother came from Scotland. He fled to the wilderness at the age of sixteen, on account of an affray with a young man who had married his affianced. Believing he had killed his rival in a fist fight, he went over the Alleghanies, and became a noble pioneer in the march of western civilization. At Fort Pitt he formed an intimacy with Simon Girty, the desperate renegade in after years, and his daily companions were trappers and hunters. He was an active spy for Governor Dunmore in 1774, and after that he had many encounters with the sons of the forest in their native wilds. He became a companion of Boone, and with him and his co-laborers arrested Kain-tuck-ee from the red men. He joined Major Clarke at the Falls of the Ohio in 1778, and after the surprise of Kaskaskia he returned to Boonsborough. Toward the close of that year he was captured by the Indians, and finally became a prison laborer in the hands of the British at Detroit. Aided by a trader’s wife, he escaped in company with two fellow-prisoners, the renowned Captain Bullitt and Lieutenant Coffee, and arrived at the Falls in July, 1779. Kenton subsequently joined Clarke in his expeditions. It was in 1782 when he heard that he had not killed his rival in love, and that his old father still lived. He went to Virginia, and, after spending some time among the friends of his early youth, he returned to Kentucky, taking his father and family with him. On the way the old man died; the remainder of the family reached Kenton’s settlement in safety. From that period, until Wayne’s expedition in 1793, Kenton was much engaged in Indian warfare.

Poor Simon Kenton experienced the bitter effects of wrong, ingratitude, and neglect. On account of some legal matters concerning his lands in Kentucky, he was imprisoned for twelve months upon the very spot where he built his cabin in 1775. In 1802, beggared by lawsuits and losses, he became landless. Yet he never murmured at the ingratitude which pressed him down, and in 1813 the veteran joined the Kentucky troops under Shelby, and was in the battle of the Thames. In 1824, then seventy years old, he journeyed to Frankfort, in tattered garments and upon a miserable horse, to ask the Legislature of Kentucky to release the claims of the state upon some of his mountain lands. He was stared at by the boys, and shunned by the citizens, for none knew him. At length General Thomas Fletcher recognized him, gave him a new suit of clothes, and entertained him kindly. When it was known that Simon Kenton was in town, scores flocked to see the old hero. He was taken to the Capitol and seated in the speaker’s chair. His lands were released, and afterward Congress gave him a pension of two hundred and forty dollars a year. He died, at the age of eighty-one years, in 1836, at his residence at the head of Mad River, Logan county, Ohio, in sight of the place where, fifty-eight years before, the Indians were about to put him to death.

35 The city of Louisville is at the Falls or Rapids of the Ohio. The rapids, formed by a dike of limestone stretching across the river, extend about two miles. Captain Bullitt, of Virginia, a brave officer, who accompanied Washington in his expedition against Fort Duquesne, visited this spot in 1773, and, it is said, laid out the city there, on the south side of the river. But no settlement was made until 1778, when a small number of families accompanied Mr. Clarke down the Ohio, and were left by him upon Corn Island. In the autumn they moved to the main land, built a block-house of logs, and thus founded Louisville, now (1851) a city and port of entry, with a population of 50,000. In 1780, the Virginia Legislature passed an act for establishing the town of Louisville, the name being given in honor of Louis XVI. of France, then lending his aid to the Americans. A stronger fort was built there in 1782, and was called Fort Nelson, in honor of Governor Thomas Nelson, of Virginia. For several years the settlement was harassed by the Indians, but it soon became too strong to fear them. The commerce of Louisville began in 1783, when Daniel Broadhead took goods from Philadelphia and exposed them for sale there. – Collins, page 360.

36 Kaskaskia, the present capital of Randolph county, Illinois, is situated on the west side of Kaskaskia River, seven miles from its junction with the Mississippi. It was settled by some French Jesuits about 1683, and was one of the towns which went into the possession of the British by the treaty of 1763, at the conclusion of the Seven Years’ War. It then contained about one hundred families, and that was about the amount of its population at the time of Clarke’s expedition.

37 Vincennes is the capital of Knox county, Indiana. It is situated on the east bank of the Wabash River, one hundred miles above its entrance into the Ohio. A French trading post was established there in 1730.

38 Governor Hamilton and several of his chief officers were sent to Williamsburg, in Virginia, where, on account of their having incited the Indians to their cruel deeds, they were confined in jail, and heavily ironed. Governor Jefferson used his influence in favor of relieving them of this rigorous treatment. He was successful, and Hamilton and his associates were allowed to go to New York on parole.

39 John Connolly was a physician, and resided at Pittsburgh, where he and Washington became acquainted. At the commencement of the war he took sides with Dunmore, and doubtless suggested to the governor the plan of arousing and combining the Indian tribes against the colonists. He visited General Gage in the autumn of 1775, and ten days after his return to Williamsburg, in Virginia, he left Dunmore and departed for the Ohio country with two companions, Allen Cameron, and Dr. John Smythe. Near Hagerstown, in Maryland, they were stopped as suspicious characters, and taken back to Frederickton. Connolly’s papers were concealed in the tree of his saddle. They revealed the whole nefarious plot. It appeared that Connolly had received from Dunmore the appointment of colonel, and was to raise a regiment in the western country and Canada. Detroit was to be his place of rendezvous, from whence, as soon as his forces could be collected, he was to enter Virginia, march to Alexandria in the spring, and there meet Lord Dunmore with a naval armament and another body of troops. Connolly and his papers were sent to Philadelphia; the first was placed in the custody of the jailer, the latter in that of Congress. Connolly was afterward a prisoner in Baltimore, and he was left in durance until about the close of the war.

40 This fort was erected in 1774, during Dunmore’s campaign, as a place of refuge. It was first called Fort Fincastle; afterward its name was changed to Henry, in compliment to the great Virginia orator. The fort stood on the south bank of the Ohio, about a quarter of a mile above the mouth of Wheeling Creek.

41 Ebenezer Zane became the founder of Zanesville, in Ohio, twenty years afterward.

42 Elizabeth Zane was the sister of Ebenezer and Silas Zane. She had just returned from Philadelphia, where she had completed her education, and was but little accustomed to the horrors of border warfare. With other females in the fort, she assisted in casting bullets, making cartridges, and loading rifles. When the powder in the fort was exhausted, Ebenezer Zane remembered that there was a keg of the article in his house, sixty yards distant from the fort. The man who should attempt to go for it would be exposed to the close and numerous shots of the Indians. Only one man for the service could be spared from the fort. Colonel Sheppard was unwilling to order any one to the duty; he asked for a volunteer. Every man present eagerly offered to undertake the hazardous duty. They contended so long for the honor, that it was feared that the Indians would return to the siege before an attempt to get the powder should be made. At this moment Elizabeth Zane came forward and asked permission to go for the powder, giving as a reason that her life was of less value to the garrison than that of a man. At first she was peremptorily refused, but so earnest were her solicitations, that consent was reluctantly given. She went out the gate, and fearlessly passed the open space to her brother’s house. The Indians saw her, and watched her movements. When she came out of the house, and, with the keg of powder in her arms, sped with the fleetness of a fawn toward the fort, they sent a full volley of bullets after her, but not a ball touched her person. The shield of God’s providence was about her, and the noble girl entered the fort in safety with her valuable prize. A loud shout welcomed her, and every man, inspired by her heroism, resolved to repulse the foe or die in the trench. Elizabeth Zane was twice married. The name of her first husband was M‘Laughlin; of the second, Clarke. She resided on the Ohio side of the river, near Wheeling, until within the last ten years. The story of Elizabeth Zane ought to be perpetuated in marble, and preserved in the Valhalla of our Revolutionary heroes.

The history of our Western States is full of the chronicles of heroic women, who boldly battled with the privations incident to new settlements, or engaged in actual conflicts with the Indian tribes upon lands which the white men wrongfully invaded. Elizabeth Zane was a type of the moral, and Mrs. Merrill of the physical heroines of that day. During the summer of 1787, the house of John Merrill, in Nelson county, Kentucky, was attacked by a party of Indians. It was midnight when the approach of the savages was announced by the barking of a dog. Mr. Merrill opened the door to ascertain the cause of the disturbance, when he received the fire of five or six rifles, and his thigh and arm were broken. He fell, and called to his wife to close the door. She was an Amazon in strength and courage, and seizing an ax for defense, closed the door just as several Indians approached with tomahawks. They soon made a breach and attempted to enter. Mrs. Merrill killed or badly wounded four of them with the ax, and maintained her post. The Indians ascended the roof, and essayed to enter the house by the broad chimney. Mrs. Merrill seized her only feather-bed, ripped it open, and cast the contents upon the fire. The suffocating smoke brought two of the savages down almost insensible. These she dispatched with the ax. The only remaining savage now tried to force his way in through the door. Across his cheek Mrs. Merrill drew the keen blade of the ax. With a horrid yell, he fled to the woods, and, arriving at Chillicothe, gave a terrible account of the strength and fury of the "long knife squaw." I might fill pages with similar recitals. For such records, see M‘Clung’s Sketches of Western Adventure. – Hildreth’s Early Settlers of Ohio.

43 The Indians might have killed Major M‘Culloch, but they determined to take him alive and torture him. His horse was fleet, but the savages managed to hem him in on three sides, while on the fourth was an almost perpendicular precipice of one hundred and fifty feet descent, with Wheeling Creek at its base. He had the single alternative, surrender to the Indians, or leap the precipice. His horse was a powerful animal. Gathering his reins tightly in his right hand, and grasping his rifle in his left, M‘Culloch spurred his charger to the brow of the declivity and made the momentous leap. They reached the foot of the bluff in safety, and the noble animal dashed through the creek, and bore his rider far away from his pursuers.

44 Simon Girty was the offspring of crime. His father, a native of Ireland, and settler in Pennsylvania, was a sot; his mother was a bawd. They had four sons; Simon was the second. With two brothers, he was captured by the Indians after Braddock’s defeat. His brother James was adopted by the Delawares, and became the fiercest savage of the tribe. Simon was adopted by the Senecas, became a great hunter, and exercised his innate wickedness to its fullest extent. For twenty years the name of Simon Girty was a terror to the women and children of the Ohio country. He possessed the redeeming quality of honesty in all his transactions. It was his earnest wish that he might die in battle. That wish was not gratified, for he died a natural death about the year 1815.

45 American Pioneer.

46 See Journals of Congress, iv., 245 and 305.

47 Fort M‘Intosh (as the redoubt was called) was erected under the general superintendence of the Chevalier De Cambray, a French engineer, who commanded the artillery in the western department. It was built of strong stockades furnished with bastions, and mounted six six-pounders. Cambray’s chief officer was Captain William Sommerville, conductor of the artillery, who, from letters from De Cambray to him (copies of which are before me), appears to have been an officer of much merit. * He was in the continental service four years and a half (more than two of which as conductor of artillery, with the rank of captain), when he resigned, and, at the close of the war, settled in the Valley of Virginia, in Berkeley county, where he died about 1825. The services of many of the subordinate officers of merit connected with the artillery department of the Continental army have failed to receive the attention of the historian. How many patriots of that struggle lie in forgotten graves!

* The following extract from a letter of instruction, sent by Colonel De Cambray to Captain Sommerville, and dated "Fort Pitt, 6th January, 1779," is a fair specimen of that officer’s diction in English: "For the supplies necessary to your department, you are to apply to the quarter-master (Colonel Archibald Steele), and, in case of refusal, to form your complaint against them. You must insist repeatedly for your store-house to be put in order, to secure the military stores, who, if continue to be neglected, in three months more ought to be unfit for service. If you insist, you shall not be accountable of it, but the commanding officer. If I did omit something, I leave to your discretion to supply it. I recommend to you once more the greatest care, and to be very scrupulous on the orders of issuing, for to avoid, if possible, the bad effects of the wasting genius who reign all over this department"

48 The battle at the Blue Licks, in Nicholas county, Kentucky, occurred on the nineteenth of August, 1782. For some time a strong body of Indians, partially under the control of Simon Girty, had committed depredations in the neighborhood, and it was finally resolved to pursue and chastise them. Daniel Boone with a party from Boonsborough, Trigg from Harrodsburgh, and Todd from Lexington, joined their forces at Bryant’s Station, about five miles northeast of Lexington. The little army consisted of one hundred and eighty-two men. They marched on the eighteenth, notwithstanding the number of the enemy was nearly twice their own, but expecting to be joined by General Logan, then at Lincoln, within twenty-four hours. Early on the following morning they came within sight of the enemy at the lower Blue Licks, who were ascending the opposite bank of the stream. The Kentuckians held a council of war, and Boone proposed waiting for the arrival of Logan. They were generally inclined to adopt the prudent council of the veteran, when Major M‘Gary, impetuous and imprudent like Meeker before the fatal battle of Minisink, raised a war-whoop, dashed with his horse into the stream, and, waving his hat, shouted, "Let all who are not cowards follow me!" Instantly the mounted men and footmen were dashing through the strong current of a deep ford in wild confusion. They ascended the bank and rushed forward in pursuit of the enemy, and, as Boone had suggested, fell into an ambuscade. The Indians, concealed in bushy ravines, almost surrounded the Kentuckians, who stood upon a bald elevation between. The Kentucky sharp-shooters fought like tigers, but the Indians, greatly superior in numbers, came up from the ravines, closed in upon their victims, and produced terrible slaughter. Most of the Kentucky leaders, including a son of Daniel Boone, were killed, and utter destruction seemed to await the pioneers. It was soon perceived that the Indians were extending their line to cut off the retreat of the Kentuckians. A retrograde movement was immediately ordered. A tumultuous retreat ensued, and great was the slaughter by the pursuing Indians. The mounted men escaped, but nearly every man on foot was slain. A large number were killed at the ford, and the waters of the river were reddened with the blood of the victims. Those who succeeded in crossing the river plunged into the buffalo thickets, and by various routes escaped to Bryant’s Station. – See M‘Clung’s Sketches of Western Adventure.

49 It was while the expedition was slowly winding its way down this hill above Cincinnati (then an unknown name, now a city with almost 120,000 inhabitants), that Captain M‘Cracken, then dying from the effects of a wound in his arm, proposed that they should all enter into an agreement that, fifty years thereafter, the survivors should "meet there and talk over the affairs of the campaign." On the fourth of November, 1832, many of those veterans met in Cincinnati, and more would doubtless have been there, had not the ravages of the cholera prevented. Kenton was still living, but debility prevented his joining his old companions in arms. – See Collins’s Kentucky.

50 See pages 58-63, inclusive.

51 Mr. Wirt, in his life of Patrick Henry, gives the following report of his speech on that occasion. Referring to the apparently gracious manner in which the king had received their petitions, he exclaimed: "Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed by a kiss. Ask yourselves how this gracious reception comports with those warlike preparations which cover our waters and darken our land. Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation? Have we shown ourselves so unwilling to be reconciled, that force must be called in to win us back to our love? Let us not deceive ourselves, sir! These are the implements of war and subjugation; the last arguments to which kings resort. I ask, gentlemen, what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission? Has Great Britain any enemy in this quarter of the world, to call for all this accumulation of armies and navies? No, sir, she has none. They are meant for us; they can be meant for no other. They are sent over to bind and rivet upon us those chains which the British ministry have been so long forging. And what have we to oppose them? Shall we try argument? Sir, we have been trying argument for the last ten years. . . . . We have petitioned; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne, and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament. Our petitions have been slighted; our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned with contempt from the foot of the throne. In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of reconciliation. There is no longer any room for hope. If we wish to be free; if we wish to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending; if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained, we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of hosts is all that is left us.

"They tell us, sir, that we are weak – unable to cope with so formidable an enemy. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be next week, or next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying supinely on our backs, and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak, if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power. Three millions of people, armed in the holy cause of Liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations, and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. And again, we have no election. If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire from the contest. * There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable! and let it come!! I repeat it, sir, let it come!!! It is vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry peace, peace; but there is no peace! The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me," he cried, with both arms extended aloft, his brow knit, every feature marked with the resolute purpose of his soul, and with his voice swelled to its loudest note, ‘GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME DEATH!!!’ "

* The boldness of Mr. Henry, and the great influence which he exerted, caused him to be presented to the British government in a bill of attainder. His name, with that of Thomas Jefferson, Peyton Randolph, John Adams, Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and several others, were on that black list.

This prediction was speedily fulfilled; for almost "the next gale from the north" conveyed the boom of the signal-gun of freedom at Lexington.

52 See page 225.

53 All the arms and ammunition in the magazine were not sufficient to cause a disturbance, for they were too small in amount to have been of much service to either party. The amount of powder removed by Dunmore was fifteen half barrels, containing fifty pounds each. In fact, it was not the value of the powder, nor the harm that might result from its removal, which probably induced Patrick Henry to summon to his standard the volunteers of Hanover. He deemed it of higher importance that the blow, which must be struck sooner or later, should be struck at once, before an overwhelming royal force should enter the colony.

The Honorable Charles Augustus Murray, a Scotch gentleman, who visited this country in 1836 (and in 1851 was married to a lady of New York, since dead), is a lineal descendant of Lord Dunmore. In his published narrative of his travels, he mentions, as a rather singular coincidence, that when he went down the Chesapeake from Baltimore for the purpose of visiting Williamsburg, the steam-boat that conveyed him was named Patrick Henry.

54 They held a council on the receipt of this advice, and it was by a majority of only one that they concluded to disperse. They sent forth an address, which was tantamount to a declaration of independence. They pledged themselves to resist by force of arms all tyranny, and by the same to defend the laws, liberties, and rights of Virginia, or any sister colony. The address was sent to the neighboring counties, and read with approval at the head of each company of volunteers. In large letters, at the bottom of the address were the words, GOD SAVE THE LIBERTIES OF AMERICA!

55 In a letter to Lord Dartmouth, Dunmore charged the colonists with a desire to subvert the government, in order to avoid the payment of heavy sums of money due to merchants in Great Britain. That some unprincipled men were flaming patriots for such a purpose, there is no doubt, but it was the rankest injustice to charge the whole people with such a motive.

56 "We examined it minutely," said the Burgesses in an address to the governor; "we viewed it in every point of light in which we were able to place it, and, with pain and disappointment, we must ultimately declare it only changes the form of oppression, without lightening the burden."

57 The following-named gentlemen composed the committee of safety. Edmund Pendleton, George Mason, John Page, Richard Bland, Thomas Ludwell Lee, Paul Carrington, Dudley Digges, James Mercer, Carter Braxton, William Cabell, and John Tabb.

58 The convention appointed Patrick Henry colonel of the first regiment, and "commander of all the forces raised and to be raised for the defense of the colony." He immediately summoned corps of volunteers from various parts of the colony. Three hundred minute-men instantly assembled at Culpepper Court House, and marched for Williamsburg. One third of them were Culpepper men, who adopted a flag with the significant device of a coiled rattle-snake, * seen in the engraving. They were dressed in green hunting shirts, with Henry’s words, LIBERTY OR DEATH, in large white letters, on their bosoms. They had bucks’ tails in their hats, and in their belts tomahawks and scalping-knives. Their fierce appearance alarmed the people as they marched through the country. They did good service in the battle at the Great Bridge in December following. William Woodford was appointed to the command of the second regiment. Alexander Spottswood was appointed major, and the heroic Captain Bullit, who had distinguished himself at Fort Duquesne, was made adjutant general.

* This device was upon many flags in the army and navy of the Revolution. The expression "Don’t tread on me," had a double significance. It might be said in a supplicating tone, "Don’t tread on me;" or menacingly, "Don’t tread on me."

59 Edmund Pendleton was chosen president, and John Tazewell, clerk. Patrick Henry, who, to the great regret of the Virginians, had resigned his military commission, was elected a member of the convention for Hanover county, and took his seat on the first day of the meeting.

60 These documents were drawn by George Mason, the friend and associate of Washington. Mr. Jefferson then a member of the Continental Congress, also prepared a constitution and sent it to the Convention. It arrived a day or two after the adoption of Mason’s form. The convention prefixed Jefferson’s preamble to it, which, in a great degree, resembles the Declaration of Independence. – See Tucker’s Life of Jefferson.

61 The device on the reverse of the great seal is a group of three figures. In the center is Liberty, with her wand and cap; on the right side, Ceres, with a cornucopia in one hand, and an ear of wheat in the other; and on her left side, Eternity, holding in one hand the globe on which rests the Phœnix.

62 The following-named gentlemen were appointed to fill the respective offices provided for by the Constitution: Patrick Henry, governor; John Page, Dudley Digges, John Taylor, John Blair, Benjamin Harrison of Berkeley, Bartholomew Dandridge, Charles Carter, and Benjamin Harrison of Brandon, counselors of state; Thomas Whiting, John Hutchings, Champion Travis, Thomas Newton, Jr., and George Webb, Commissioners of admiralty; Thomas Everard, and James Cooke, commissioners for settling accounts; and Edmund Randolph, attorney general. The General Assembly of Virginia met at Williamsburg for the first time on the seventeenth of October, 1776. Then commenced her glorious career as a sovereign state of a great and free confederacy. It was a joyful day for her patriot sons; and her sages, scanning the future with the eye of faith and hope, were prone to exclaim, in the words of Freneau, written a year before:

"I see, I see

Freedom’s established reign; cities and men,
Numerous as sands upon the ocean shore,
And empires rising where the sun descends!
The Ohio soon shall glide by many a town
Of note; and where the Mississippi’s stream,
By forests shaded, now runs sweeping on,
Nations shall grow, and states not less in fame
Than Greece and Rome of old! We, too, shall boast
Our Scipio’s, Solon’s, Cato’s, sages, chiefs
That in the lapse of time yet dormant lie,
Waiting the joyous hour of life and light.
Oh snatch me hence, ye muses, to those days
When, through the veil of dark antiquity,
A race shall hear of us as things remote,
That blossom’d in the morn of days!"



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