|The following text is transcribed from Chapter XXV pages 124-131 of History of the County of Westmoreland, Pennsylvania, with Biographical Sketches of Many of its Pioneers and Prominent Men. It chronicles events leading up to Lochry's Expedition and events of the expedition itself. The text include footnotes to supporting a variety of supporting documentation.
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The Settlements in 1779 and 1780 -— Ferocity of the Savages, and Depravity of a Class of Whites — Some Whites from about Hannastown kill Friendly Indians -— Kirkpatrick's Cabin attacked by Indians, and there in of the Custom of claiming Scalps -— Brodhead ordered to send a Detachment under Maj. Craig from Fort Pitt to reinforce Gen. Clark -— Clark's Plan of a Western Campaign -— Westmoreland requested to cooperate with Him — Bickerings and Jealousies among the Leaders of the County — Col. Loch ry, as County Lieutenant, under Instructions from the Council, raises a force of Volunteers to join with Clark —- The Difficulties under which Lochry labored —- Clark's Letter to the Officers of Westmoreland, disclosing his Plan of Campaign -— Lochry's Friends volunteer -— They rendezvous at Carnahan's Block-House —- They proceed down the River after Clark to unite with him at Wheeling — Lochry's last Letter -— Arriving at Wheeling (Fort Henry), Lochry finds that Clark bad gone on down the River -— He prepares Boats to follow -— Goes to the Mouth of the Kanawha —- Capt. Shannon sent forward with a Letter to Clark -— He and his Men are captured —- The Indians place them on an Island as a Decoy for the other Whites —- Lochry's Men land some distance above the Island -— Upon landing they are attacked by a large Force of Indians and entirely cut off -— Memorial of Two of the Prisoners who were exchanged —- Capt. Orr, and his Account of this Expedition -— Lieut. Samuel Craig's Narrative of his Captivity -— New Volunteers called out towards the end of the Year 1781.
What the state of our country west of Laurel Hill about the end of 1779 and the beginning of 1780 was may well be imagined. It would fill a volume to repeat all the testimony bearing on this one subject at
1 See notes Nos. 1 and 2 in Appendix "P".
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this particular time. Some of the inhabitants, where it was possible for them to do so, had left, others were in real poverty. When the collector of taxes came round, he saw in some districts nothing but deserted homes, with rabbits running among the ruins of the cabins, and with weeds growing about the fields. At many places the graves of those who had formerly lived there could be seen near the garden fence, now lying down. Those who remained were collected near the forts and block-houses, or in clusters of two and three families, they barricaded one of their cabins for the use of all. Some farther remote dared the Fates, and trusted that they were too far off to be in the way of danger. At the outer edge of the settlements, — that is, along the Kiskiminetas, the Allegheny, and the frontier of Washington, — companies of rangers were formed to protect the rest, who at the hazard of their lives ventured out to gather their scanty crops or to prepare the ground. These were continually being driven in, so that many sowed who did not reap, and famine often stared them in the face. From 1778 to 1782 there was scarcely a community that had bread sufficient to do it from the harvest to the spring. Every few days word came of some depredation. Sometimes it would be a settler who ventured out to dig his potatoes, sometimes it would be a cabin full of children, sometimes a settler would be missed, and nothing heard of him for months, and even years, and frequently never.
The never-ending war, and the many causes concurring, led the whites to act worse towards their enemies than at any other time previous, and an incentive further was the standing reward for the scalps of Indians at war, which, offered early by the State authorities to encourage the inhabitants to assist the soldiers, was from time to time increased. As a general thing the settlers did not claim these rewards, but there were some very influential persons who did, and who, to their shame, made it too much of a business. Some light is thrown on this traffic in the notes to this chapter.(1) Col. Brodhead, writing to President Reed in 1781, says that forty Delawares had come in to join the whites in their frontier war, but a party of about forty men from the vicinity of Hannastown attempted to destroy them, and were only prevented from doing so by the regular soldiers. He says that he could have gotten a hundred if it had not been for such open enmity as this towards all the Indians alike; that he was not a little surprised to find the late Capts. Irwin and Jack, Lieut. Brownlee and Ensign Guthrie concerned in this base attempt; and he supposes that the women and children were to suffer an equal carnage with the men. And although Col. Brodhead made several campaigns against the Indians and succeeded in inflicting punishment upon them, and although he used every exertion in his power, sometimes creditable and sometimes discreditable, yet he has borne testimony that the feelings and acts of the whites themselves were in part provocative of that fearful ferocity which Was developed on the part of their red enemies.
We can, perhaps, from one instance see how this connection with the savages changed all the finer instincts of men who, had these same men not been accustomed to such ways as they were, would have shuddered at acts which they themselves did without any compunction:
A pious family named Kirkpatrick lived in a cabin
1 Scalp Bounty. — Rewards and bounties were offered at different times by the authorities to stimulate the soldiery and the people. How good this was in effect is questionable. In 1756, Governor Morris offered for every male Indian enemy above twelve years taken prisoner and delivered 150 Spanish dollars or pieces-of-eight; for the scalpo every male Indian above twelve years, 130 pieces-of-eight; for every female prisoner and male prisoner under twelve years, 130 pieces-of-eight; for the scalp of every Indian woman produced as evidence of being killed, 50 pieces-of-eight. These bounties were payable on delivery at any of the forts garrisoned by troops in the pay of the Province, or at any of the county towns to keepers of the jails there. In 1704, Governor John Penn proposed as a reward for the capture of every male Indian above ten years of age $150, or for his scalp when killed $134; for every female or every male under ten years of age when captured $130, or for the scalp of such female when killed $50. (Craig.) About 1782 the standing reward was $100 for a dead Indian's scalp, and $150 for an Indian captured alive and brought in at the time the reward was claimed. This sum was also allowed for the capture of every white man like Girty taken prisoner acting with the Indians. The law is said to have been repealed regarding the prisoners, but allowed in force as to the scalps. Col. Samuel Hunter of Westmoreland, was authorized by President Reed to offer the rewards, as were also Col. Jacob Stroud and others. Col. Hunter about this time announces to President Reed that he has organized a party to go out after scalps, for although they did not make as much out of a dead Indian as out of a living one, yet it wai less trouble and more agreeable to all concerned to shoot him at once. Col. Archibald Lochry, the county lieutenant, writes from Twelve-Mile Run, his place of residence, that there is no doubt the reward offered will answer a good end. In this correspondence he applies for more ammunition, and adds that for the reason mentioned they were to be applied, and at that time was the most needed. Col. Hunter had to report the unsuccessful return of a party after scalps; and in reply the president told him to be of good cheer, and that perseverance would in time produce better effects. Many scalps were sent in, one after another, and at one time as high as thirteen with accompanying certificates were invoiced to claim the premium. This was in 1781 and 1782. (See Col. Records.)
"An incident occurred which led to the repeal of this law before the termination of the war. A party of Indian spies having entered a wigwam on French Creek, supposed to be untenanted, discovered, while breakfasting, an Indian extended on a piece of bark overhead. They took him prisoner, but reflecting that there was no bounty on prisoners they shot him under circumstances which brought the party into disgrace and the scalp bounty law into disrepute." (Judge Wilkeson "American Pioneer.")
The inducement of the bounty led some of the whites to kill friendly Indians.
Col. A. Lochry to President Reed, 1780.
" Twelve-Mile Run (WEST OF LIGONIER).
"June 1, 1780. "
May it please your Excellency:
"In duty to my country I find it absolutely necessary to hire a gentleman in this county at a very high expense to lay the distressed situation of this county before your Excellency and the Council. Since Mr. Sloan, our representative, left this county wo have had three parties of savages amongst us. They have killed and taken five persons two miles from Ligonier; burnt a mill belonging to one Laughlin. They killed two men and wounded one near Bushy Run. They likewise killed two men on Braddock's road, near Brush Creek. Their striking us again in so many different parts of the county has again drove the greatest part of the county on the north of Youghiogheny River into garrison."
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near the fort at Crooked Creek, now in Armstrong County. At that time there were some soldiers stationed at the fort. Two of these were at Kirkpatrick's house of a night along with a neighbor lad. In the morning they had had family worship, as was the custom of the house, and they had arisen from their knees. When Kirkpatrick opened the door an Indian sprang to the opening. The white man pushed him off with his hand against his breast, but as he did so the gun of the Indian in falling was discharged and the ball struck a little girl about eight years old, the daughter of Kirkpatrick. While the men were engaged in securing the doors two of them were mor- tally wounded by the Indians. Kirkpatrick himself shot one of the savages, when the three others of the party fled. After a time the lad, being let out, got on a horse which was in the stable and galloped to the fort, and on giving the alarm some other soldiers came out. In the mean time the wounded men had no water to drink but that which was left from wash- ing the dishes. There was no surgeon at the post, and both men died that day. When one who had come from the fort was requested to scalp the dead Indian, he said that Kirkpatrick was the more proper person, as the scalp belonged to him who had killed him. Accordingly Kirkpatrick lifted it. Afterwards a piece of bark was procured, upon which the poor suffering child was carried to Shields' Fort, a distance of twenty miles, that it might there get attention; but mortification set in and the child died.
In February, 1781, Brodhead received instruction from the commander-in-chief to detach his fieldpieces, howitzers and train, and also a part of his small force then about Pittsburgh, to join Gen. Clark. His own force at that post did not then exceed two hundred men after other troops from Maryland had withdrawn from along the Allegheny.(1) At this time all the Pennsylvania troops which could be gotten together were sent to join the Southern army under Gen. Greene, and at their departure new fears arose that the unprotected state of the country might tempt the British troops at the north to descend, whence all the militia of the State were, ordered to hold themselves in readiness.(2)
In March, 1781, Gen. Clark disclosed to Governor Reed his plan of operations to lay waste the country of the Indians and thus protect the frontiers of Pennsylvania and Virginia. This plan had been previously submitted to Washington and to Jefferson, and met with their approbation. Clark desired the assent of the President of the Council for the volunteers which he said he could get west of Laurel Hill.(3) The President in reply said they heartily concurred in his proposed campaign, but that they could offer him no assistance. They had, however, sent word with the member from Westmoreland to encourage the people here to co-operate with him in all respects touching his plan. Christopher Hays was the member of the Council, but he, unfortunately, was opposed to the expedition, and, with Marshall, Cannon, and Pentecost, was blamed (4) for taking every step to disappoint the good intentions of Col. Lochry, who from the first encouraged Clark, and who took upon himself to pro- mise volunteers. The fear of invasion had not yet put a stop to the wrangling among the leaders of our people, and these jealousies and bickerings were worse at the time when the people were suffering most. This cause of shame was often made apparent to them, and in many letters from the President to their cries of weakness and calls for help their open dissensions were called up against them. The letters of Duncan, Perry, Cook, Lochry, Marshall, and Hays all give evidence of this family quarrel. Every man in a public place had his traducer and villifier. It was no difficult thing for an unscrupulous man to get a dozen of his neighbors to sign a petition in which many vile things were said behind a prominent man's back. Brodhead and Duncan were informed on for speculating with the public money in buying manors and mill-seats; Lochry and Perry for speculating in am-munition and whiskey. It was like a dance where no two are partners at the same time: Brodhead, Gibson; Lochry, Brodhead; Cook and Gibson, and so on. They wrangled as badly as school-boys; yea, if possible, as childishly as a pair of toothless barristers, servientis ad legem.
Somewhat alarmed from the repeated representations of the state of our frontier county, and apprehensive that the aid of the militia would be too slow and tedious, the Council, in the early part of the year 1781, directed Col. Lochry to raise a corps of fifty volunteers to serve for four months, besides voting that a permanent company should be raised for the war. These troops were to be disposed of as Lochry might direct, and were to be supplied through David Duncan, the newly appointed commissioner of supplies in the stead of James Perry. Perry, it would appear, was no better an officer than he might have been, and it was alleged that much of the insufficiency of the militia called out from time to time was blame-able to his negligence. President Reed, in a letter to Lochry, (5) after complaining of the trouble they had in getting the commissioners to report regularly, says, "It is with much concern we hear that when troops are raised for your protection they are permitted to loiter away their time at taverns, or straggling about the country," and he fears there had been some negligence in the officers to whose command they had been intrusted. At another time he complains, (6) that it does not seem necessary to have the
1 Craig's History of Pittsburgh, 100.
2 Erie's History of Pennsylvania, 201.
3 Penn. Archives, Old Series, vol. ix., 23.
4 Clark to President (or Governor) Reed, Aug. 4, 1782 Penn. Arch.
5 Archives, vol. ix,, 18, March 17, 1781.
6 Id., March 26, 1781.
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troops staying about Hannastown, and advises the colonel to place them where they would be of more benefit.
Col. Lochry, in sending in his report, in April, 1781, says that the savages had begun their hostilities, having that early struck the western settlements at four different places, taking and killing thirteen per- sons, two of whom were killed within one mile of Hannastown. Besides this they took away a number of horses and effects. He avers that the county at that time was more depopulated than it had ever been, and that if the savages knew the weakness of the settlement they could easily drive the people over the Youghiogheny. He was doubtful, too, whether they could keep the militia long for want of provisions. There was no ammunition in the county but what was public property, but of which he had given some out to the people with which to defend themselves. He had by this time built a magazine protected by a block-house for the stores near his own house, but this the president did not favor, and directed the stores to be distributed at various posts.
The plan of Clark met with the approval of the commander-in-chief as well as of the president and Council, for it was supposed that offensive operations would keep the Indians at home, and prove a relief more effective to the frontier than that offered by any defensive force whatever. Clark disclosed his plan of campaign in a letter to the officers of Westmoreland, dated the 3d of June, 1781. After stating with what pleasure he heard of the attempt being made by the officers of the county to fall on some mode of distressing the Indians in the coming campaign, either by a separate expedition, as talked of, or by giving assistance to the one he was ordered to execute, he goes on to say that his present object was the Shawanese, Delaware, and Sandusky towns. The Delawares of the Muskingum had removed to the west of the Scioto, and those formerly living up the Allegheny to the San- dusky. If the expedition from Westmoreland attacked the Sandusky towns, he might at the same time make a diversion on the country of the Shawanese and Delawares. Both of these armies by forming a junction might then make some effectual movement which should put an end to the Indian war. Each party might thus facilitate the operations of the other, and so divert the attention of the tribes that they would fall an easy prey. And he advised them that if it was out of their power to get supplies in time for an expedition of such length, it would be advis- able to take such measures as would enable the one army to execute the project laid out for the two. If prejudice were laid aside, and all their strength exerted, there was a certainty of peace in the fall.
So spoke Clark, a brave, cool, resolute man of genius, and who had been encouraged by the men who had the good of the country at heart. The people of Westmoreland were, on account of the known ability of Clark, expected to assist him, but when the decisive time came there were but two men of the prominent leaders in all the county who actually offered their services to lead the volunteers. There had been three hundred promised from the two counties of Washing- ton and Westmoreland, and from the encouragement there were hopes that nearly this number would be raised.
By July the four-month militia ordered to be raised had been mustered in, within three weeks after receiving instructions, and the company of volunteers for the war under Capt. Thomas Stokely had above thirty
The following notes from the Archives, confirming the text, are presented:
March 27, 17S1. — Brodhead informs President Reed that it was impossible for him to garrison Fort Armstrong and Fort Crawford (Kittanning and Puckety, or Logan's Ferry) until the commander-in-chief should order him to evacuate Fort McIntosh.
Col. Lochry to President Reed.
"TWELVE MILWE RUN, April 2d, 1781.
"I am just returned from burying a man killed and scalped by the Indians at Col. Pomroy's house; one other man is missing, and all Pomroy's effects carried off."
Gen. William Smith, of Carlisle, to President Reed.
"April 18, 1781.
"Mr. Smith will doubtless inform your Excellency how the People of Westmoreland are drove and distressed by the Indians."
James Perry to President Reed.
"Westmoreland County, Sewickley, July 2d, 1781.
"About three weeks ago one James Chambers was taken prisoner about two miles from my house; last Friday two young women were killed in Ligonier Valley, and this morning a small garrison at Philip Clungensmith's, about eight miles from this and four or five miles from Hannastown, consisting of between twenty and thirty women and children, were destroyed, only three making their escape. The particulars I cannot well inform you, as the party that was sent to bury the dead are not yet returned, and I wait every moment to hear of or perhaps see them strike at some other place. That party was supposed to be about seventeen, and I am apt to think there are still more of them in the settlements. Our frontiers are in a very deplorable situation. . . ."
Minutes of a Meeting in Westmoreland County.
"Agreeable to Publick notice given by Coll. Hays to the Principal Inhabitants of the County of Westmoreland to meet at Capt'n John McClellen's on the 18th Day of June, 1781.
"And Whereas there was a number of the Principal people met on the 2d Day, and unanimously chose John Proctor, John Pomroy, Charles Cambell, Saml. Moorhead, James Barr, Charles Foreman, Isaac Mason, James Smith, and Hugh Martain a Committee to Enter into resolves for the defence of our frontiers, as they were informed by Christ. Hays, Esq., that their proceedings would be approv'd of by Council.
"1st Resolv'd, that a Campaign be carded. on with Geul. Clark.
"2d Resolv'd, that Genl. Clarke be furnished with 300 men out of Pomroy's, Beard's, and Davises Battalion.
"3dly, Resolv'd, that Coll. Archd. Lochry gives orders to sd Colls, to raise their quota by Volunteers or Draught.
"4thly, Resolv'd, that £6 be advanced to every voluntier that marches under the command of Geul. Clark on the propos'd Campaign.
"5th, And for the further Incouragement of Voluntiers, that grain bo raised by subscription by the Different Companies.
"6thly, that Coll. Lochry council with the Officers of Virginia respecting the manner of Draughting those that assosiate in that State and others.
"7th, Resolved, that Coll. Lochry meet Genl. Clark and other officers, and Coll. Crawford, on the 13d lust., to confer with them the day of Rendezvouse.
"Signed by order of Committee,
"John Proctor, President.
— Penn. Archives, vol. ix. p. 559.
Duncan, as commissary, went through every settlement west of Laurel Hill for forage for the expedition, but could not get enough to supply even the troops at Fort Pitt and at the posts, neither would Brodhead let any provisions pass down the river. —- Penn. Archives, vol. ix , 190.
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men. At that time the enemy were almost constantly in the country, killing and captivating the inhabitants. The subject of the proposed expedition had been much talked of, and a meeting of the foremost men of the county, presided over by Christopher Hays, gave the expression of the people. (1)
But all they gave was their expression, and the most of these men in private talk (which really had more weight) expressed their fears at leaving their homes exposed by going off. Brodhead also, from motives of jealousy, retarded the campaign, not only by prohibiting supplies from leaving Pittsburgh, but by giving out that he himself was about organizing an expedition for the Sandusky towns, and calling on the people to assist him.
But Lochry had made up his mind, and no doubt harassed almost to death, wanted to convince the people that he was not what some said he was. Clark determined to wait no longer on volunteers from here, and taking with him what he had and relying on others from Kentucky, he left Fort Pitt down the river.
The whole force of Lochry rendezvoused July 24, 1781, at Carnahan's block-house, about eleven miles northwest of Hannastown. Among them were Capt. Robert Orr, one of the most steadfast of Lochry's friends, who at that time was a captain in the militia, and who, although he had no power to order his men out of the county, not only volunteered to be one of the party to accompany Lochry, who was so warmly entreated by Clark to come, but exerted his influence in inducing others to volunteer. Capt. Thomas Stokely, who was Lochry's right-hand man, and Capt. Samuel Shearer each was at the head of a company of rangers, and Capt. Charles Campbell had a company of horse.
On the next day (July 25, 1781), Lochry in command, they set out for Fort Henry, now Wheeling, by way of Pittsburgh. On the 4th of August, Clark was at Wheeling, and at that time Lochry, with Capt. Stokely's company of rangers, thirty-eight men, and about fifty other volunteers, some of them under Capt. Shearer, was at Mericle's (Casper Markle) mill on his way out. In his letter to the president of the Council of this date he says that others who were expected to join him had been hindered from going. He says he proposed to join Clark at Fort Henry, on the Ohio. This is the last letter of his correspondence. (2)
The men Lochry took with him were allowed, on all sides, to have been of the very best for Indian fighting. But they were in a deplorable condition to leave home. The company of Capt. Stokely is described as being literally half-naked. An outfit sufficient for these was sent after them by the president through Ensign William Cooper, but it is doubtful whether it reached them. The whole number that left with Lochry was one hundred and seven.
The troops sent from Fort Pitt under the direction of the general of the army were under Capt. Isaac Craig, of the artillery. These proceeded to the Falls of the Ohio, whence, from a disappointment arising from the failure of the Kentucky troops to unite with Clark there, they returned home. Clark was not, therefore, able to prosecute his intended plan of operations, as all the forces he could collect amounted to but seven hundred and fifty men. Lochry was to follow Craig down the river, and under instructions from Clark, they together were to proceed to the mouth of the Miami River. Clark changing his plans did not go that way, but left a small party at the place intended for meeting, with instructions for Lochry to. follow him.
When Lochry's force arrived at Fort Henry they found that Clark had gone down the river, leaving for them some provisions and a traveling boat, with directions for them to follow and join his army at a point twelve miles below. They were, however, detained here some ten days in preparing temporary boats for the transportation of their horses and men.
In time, however, they launched their frail boats and passed down the river; but when they arrived at this second designated point they found that Clark had gone down the river but the day before, leaving a few men with one boat under Maj. Craycroft, but no provisions or ammunition, both of which they were greatly in need of. Clark had promised and left word that at the mouth of the Kanawha he would await their arrival. When they at length came there they found that he, on account of the frequent desertions of his men, in order to prevent more had been obliged to proceed down the river without them. Here they found affixed to a pole a letter from him which directed them to follow.
Their situation now was such as to create alarm. Their provisions and forage were nearly exhausted, there was no source of supply in that country but the military stores of themselves in the care of Clark, the river was low and uncertain, and as they were inexperienced in piloting and unacquainted with the channels they could not hope to overtake him. Lochry then dispatched Capt. Shannon in a boat
1 Supra. See note.
2 " The Supreme Executive Council of Pennsylvania :
"To all to whom these presents shall come, know, That whereas we have heretofore appointed Archibald Lochry, of the County of Westmoreland, Esquire, to be Prothonotary of the said County of Westmore- land, and commissioned him accordingly; and, whereas, the said Archibald Lochry is said to be deceased, or made captive by the Indians, we have therefore thought proper to supersede (he said appointment and commission, and do hereby supersede and revoke and make null and void the same, anything in the said commission contained to the contrary here or anywhere notwithstanding.
"Given by order of the Council under the hand of his Excellency William Moore, Esq., President, and the seal of the State, at Philadelphia, 22d of December, 1781.
"Attest, " Wm. Moore, Prest.
"J. Matlack, Sec."
This revocation of the commission of Lochry is of record in the recorder's office, Greensburg.
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with four men, with the hope of overtaking Clark and securing the much-needed supplies. Before they had proceeded very far they were taken prisoners by the Indians. Shannon had been intrusted with a letter from Lochry to Clark, in which was detailed the situation of Lochry's men. About this time, it is also narrated, Lochry waylaid a party of nineteen deserters from Clark's command, and these on being released by him joined with the Indians, probably in order to avail themselves of an opportunity to escape home. Capt. Shearer's company was left in command of Lieut. Isaac Anderson.
The Indians had had knowledge of the expedition, but had been in the belief that the forces of Clark and of Lochry were acting together. Being under this impression they were afraid to attack the main force, as Clark had a piece of field artillery with him. But now being apprised of the actual state of affairs by the capture of Shannon, and learning from the report of the deserters the weakness of Lochry's party, they speedily sent their runners out in all directions, and collected in great numbers at a point designated some distance below the mouth of the Miami River where it empties into the Ohio, and there awaited for the arrival of the whites to destroy them.
They thereupon placed the prisoners whom they had taken in a position on the north side of the river, near the upper end of an island, which at this day is called " Lochry's Island," (1) where they could be readily observed by those coming down the river. They promised to spare the lives of these prisoners upon the condition that they should hail their companions as they passed and induce them to come to their succor. They were to stand like Demas ("gentleman-like") at the Hill Lucre, beckoning the pilgrims.
Lochry's men, however, wearied with their slow progress, in evil heart at their disappointments and continuous misfortunes, and in despair of reaching Clark's army, landed on the shore of the Ohio at a point about three miles ou this side of the island where their companions were placed as a decoy. The spot appears to have attracted them by its inviting beauty. It was at the inlet of a creek, which since that day has been called Lochry's Creek, where it empties into the Ohio, between nine and ten miles below the mouth of the Miami.
They drew their boats to the shallow shore, and at about ten-o'clock in the forenoon of the 24th of August, 1781, here landed. After landing they removed their horses ashore, and turned them loose to graze that they might obtain sufficient to keep them alive until they should reach the falls of the river (now Louisville), one hundred and twenty miles distant. Before long one of the men had killed a buffalo, and all the party, except a few who were keeping watch over the horses, were engaged about the fires which they had kindled preparing a meal.
The Indians, however, during that time had their runners out all along the river-banks, so that it was highly dangerous for a landing to be made at any place, for parties could be collected at any point at the shortest warning. So Lochry's men were scarcely well landed on shore when they were attacked. Quick, sharp, effective, as was the wont of the savages in their attacks, — lightning and thunder together, — into the midst of the men from an overhanging bluff came a volley of rifle-balls. On this bluff, above the party of whites, were large trees. On these trees and be- hind them, having the whites down below them and at their mercy, like bats and vampires clung the savages.
The men seized their arms and defended themselves as long as their ammunition lasted, and as they did so attempted to escape to their boats. But the boats were unwieldy, the water was low and shoaly, and their force much weakened and too unavailable. The Indians, seeing their opportunity, closed in from their side upon the whole party, who being no longer able or in a condition to resist were compelled to be taken prisoners, some of them, with a hope of mercy, sur- rendering.
The few words with which this disastrous expedition in, all general histories of the border is dismissed agree in this, that the lesser number of the whole party escaped death or captivity. All the best authorities say that none at all escaped except those that escaped after they had been taken. Lochry him- self was among the first who were killed, falling in defending his countrymen, as he was sworn to, even in the wilderness of a strange and foreign territory.
Orr relates that Lochry, with some other of the prisoners, immediately after being taken was killed. It is probable that an indiscriminate slaughter would have taken place had not the chief who commanded them, or whom they at least obeyed, came up in time. This chief said to the whites that these murders were committed by them in retaliation for those Indians who were killed after they had been taken, as they alleged, by Brodhead on the Muskingum some time before.
Of the one hundred and six or seven of Lochry's party at the time of the surrender forty-two were killed and sixty-four were taken prisoners. The attacking party of Indians was much the larger. These were a mixture of various tribes, and among these various tribes were the prisoners and booty divided in proportion to the number of warriors en- gaged.
The next day the Indians with their prisoners set out for the Delaware towns. Before they separated they were met by a party of British and Indians under a Maj. Caldwell, with (as is reported) the Girtys and Alexander McKee in their train, they professing to be on their way to the falls to attack Clark. With these the greater number of the Indians who had helped to capture Lochry's men returned to the
1 Written "Laughrey's Creek," and "Laughrey's Island."
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Ohio. A few only remained with the prisoners and spoils, and these when they separated were taken to the various towns to which they had been assigned. The prisoners were held in captivity until the next year, which brought the Revolutionary war to a close. After the preliminary articles of peace were signed, late in the fall of 1782, these prisoners were ransomed by the British officers in command of the northern posts, to be by them exchanged for British prisoners in the hands of the Americans. These were sent to the St. Lawrence. A few of them taken had previously effected their escape, a few deserted from Montreal, and the rest of those who were left sailed in the spring of 1783 from Quebec to New York, and returned home to Westmoreland by way of Philadelphia, these having been absent twenty-two months. But more than one-half of those who left Pennsylvania with Col. Lochry never returned.
After the men left Pittsburgh they were not heard of for many weeks. When Capt. Craig returned he could not be persuaded but that Lochry himself, with his men, had returned home. But the people of Westmoreland waited till at last all hope died. We see from some of the correspondence how the word was at length received, and how hope almost changed into despair. Brigadier William Irvine had been ordered to the command of Fort Pitt on the 24th of September, 1781, and in a letter from him of December 3d to President Moore the result is announced in the following words:
"I am sorry to inform your Excellency that this country has got a severe stroke by the death of Colonel Lochry and about one hundred — it is said — of the best men of Westmoreland, including Captain Stokely and his Hangers. Many accounts agree that they were all killed or taken at the mouth of the Miami River, — I believe chiefly killed. This misfortune, added to the failure of General Clark's expedition, has tilled the people with great dismay. Many talk of returning to the east side of the mountain in the spring. Indeed there is great reason to apprehend that the savages, and perhaps the British from Detroit, will push us hurd in the spring, and I believe there never were posts of a country in a worse state of defence." (1)
In reply to this letter, President Moore said that the loss of Col. Lochry, with his men, and the dis- tressed state of the post and the country round it gave them great pain.
Of those who were carried to Canada were Isaac Anderson, of Capt. Shearer's company, and Richard Wallace, the quartermaster to Lochry's command. In a memorial to the president of the Council they represented that they were inhabitants of Westmoreland County, who had had the misfortune to be made prisoners by the Indians on the 24th of August, the day on which Lochry was surrounded and defeated; that they had been carried to Montreal, and kept in close confinement there till the 22d of May, 1782; and that after a long and fatiguing march they had got into the city on the day before 8 at three o'clock. As they were destitute of money and clothes, and could not get home without them, they prayed the president and Council to take their case into consideration, and allow them pay from the time they had been taken. They said they were under Lochry when they were taken, and that they had a list of all, officers and privates, of the party who were then pris- oners, which information they were ready to give the Council. If the list or any other information was furnished, we do not know where it can be found. It has certainly never been in print.
The particulars of this campaign were subsequently put in print as the narration of Capt. Orr (before referred to), who accompanied Lochry. From the manner it corroborates official documents, it must be allowed a special degree of credence. It is also corroborated by a manuscript account by Ensign Hun- ter, which Mr. Albach, in his "Annals of the West," refers to, and who has therein published Orr's account. (3)
Capt. Orr was wounded by having his arm broken in the engagement. He was carried prisoner to San- dusky, where he remained several months. The Indians finding that his wound was stubborn, and that they could not cure it, at length carried him to the military hospital at Detroit. From here in the winter he was transferred to Montreal, and at the end of the war exchanged with other prisoners. (4)
But the only account of individual suffering and of the distress attending the participants in this unfortunate expedition is the one still retained in the family of the Craigs of Derry township. For of those of our frontier men who were distinguished either for personal bravery or on account of their suffering in some way in the interest of the people, we may here with propriety recall Samuel Craig the younger. Craig was a lieutenant in Capt. Orr's company, and was taken prisoner with many others. After they had taken him, and while they were cross- ing the river with him, or likely taking him to shore from the stream itself, some of the Indians in the boat threw him out intending to drown him. They kept pushing his head under as it emerged out of the water, and as he grasped the sides of the canoe with the tenacity and despair of a drowning man they beat his hands with their paddles to make him let go. Being an expert swimmer he was hard to drown, and seeing this finally, when he was well-nigh exhausted, one of the Indians claimed him for his prisoner and as his property took him into the canoe, and kept him for the time under his own protection.
With these Indians and some few prisoners with them whom they had retained, Craig suffered all the punishment which came in a natural way from hun- ger and cold upon them all alike. So too he suffered from threats and fears of horrible torture. At times they were all nearly starved. Once when they were
1 Archives, vol. ix. p. 458.
2 That was Philadelphia, July 2, 1782.
3 "Annals of the West," by James K. Albach, Pittsburgh, W. S. Haven, 1850.
4 In 1805 he was appointed an associate judge in Armstrong County, and ho held this office until his death in 183.J, in his eighty-ninth year.
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in a famishing condition they by fortune came across a small patch of potatoes. These they dug up and gathered together for a feast. In the night, when the others had fallen asleep, Craig, who was lying between two Indians, and who not yet had the pangs of hun- ger assuaged, rose up from between them at the risk of his life, and getting at the raw potatoes made what he declared was the greatest feast of his life. He took his place between the Indians without having been detected. At another time they were forced of necessity to make a meal of a wolf's head which was almost carrion when they found it. They boiled it into a soup and ate it with avidity.
This Samuel Craig was possessed of a cheerful nature, and could submit to dangers and hardships with good grace. He was especially fond of music, and was something of a singer. In his captivity he frequently sang his homely songs " to strangers in a strange land." This singing not only pleased the Indians, but actually was the means of sparing his life, for he had not been among them long when all the prisoners were taken out and set upon a log side by side. Their faces were blackened, which was done to indicate the doom of the captives, and the Indians grouped themselves in a circle not far round. At that terrible moment Craig, it is said, retained his self-command; he raised his voice and sang loud and clear the most melodious air perhaps he ever sang. He alone was saved of his companions.
He was sold to the British for the usual consideration, a gallon of whiskey. He was then exchanged and returned home. He subsequently married a daughter of John Shields, Esq., by whom he left a family of five sons and two daughters. He was a fuller, and built a fulling-mill on the bank of the Loyalhanna near New Alexandria. (1)
During the remaining part of the year 1781 the Indians in squads approached from many directions, and the county lieutenants received circular letters to hold the militia in constant readiness. By an act of Assembly calling out some companies for the Westmoreland and northern frontiers, those who enlisted were allowed to be exempt from taxes. The country was indeed so impoverished that the troops about Fort Pitt (the name by which the post at Pittsburgh still went) were sent out to shoot game to keep them from hunger. The public good at the same time was sacrificed, as we have seen, by the bickerings and jealousies between Brodhead, while he commanded there, and Gibson and his Virginia followers, for the reason of which Gen. Irvine was sent to that point. That fight was the old fight between Virginia and Pennsylvania. (2)
1 Now the property of Mrs. Craig, one of his descendants. He died of hemorrhage caused by the extraction of a tooth.
James Kane, Sr., court-crier under Judge Young, and whom the bar yet traditionally remembers as " Jimmy Kane," was one of the prisoners taken to the Pottowattomies, and who came home from a captivity among them. He died in Derry township in 1845.
2 Archibald Lochry. —- Very little information has been obtained regarding the life of Archibald Lochry, further than is found in the public
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[See Chap. XXIV.]
(1.) To show the estimation in which Brady was held by Gen. (then colonel) Brodhead we give a few extracts from his correspondence, found among the Pennsylvania Archives:
COL. D. BRODHEAD TO PRESIDENT REED, 1780.
Capt. Brady with five men and two Delaware Indiana set out for Sandusky with a view to bring off a British prisoner or some Indian scalpB. -One of his Indians left him and returned to this place sick or cowardly. He has been out ten days, and in as many more I expect him back again, if he is fortunate. I beg leave to recommend Capt. Brady to the notice of the Hon. Ex. Council as an excellent officer, and I sincerely wish he may not leave the service for want of the promotion he has merited.
SAME TO SAME.
Fort Pitt, June 30, 1780.
Capt.-Lieut. Brady has just returned from Sandusky. He took prisoners two young squaws within a mile of their principal village. One of them effected her escape after six dayB march, the other he brought to Cuscusky, where he met seven warriors, who had taken a woman and child off Chartiers Creek. He fired at the captain and killed him, and has brought in the woman and the Indian's scalp, but the squaw made her escape at the same time. When Capt. Brady fired at the Indian he had only three men with him, and but two rounds of powder. He was out 32 days, 6 of which be was quite destitute of provisions of any kind, but he has brought his party safe to his place.
THE TRIAL OF CAPT. BRADY.
(2.) On Monday last, the 20th of this month (May, 1793), a Court of Oyer aud Terminer and Gaol Delivery, and of Nisi Prius, for the county of Allegheny was held at this place (Pittsburgh) by the chief justice and Judge Yeates.
The only criminal business that came before the judges was the trial of Capt. Samuel Brady, who, when the judges were last here, had been indicted for murder, in killing certain Indians, near the mouth of Beaver Creek, in the spring of the year 1791.
It was proved to the satisfaction of the court that, notwithstanding the treaties of Fort Stanwix, Mcintosh, Muskingum, and Miami, which established peace between the Indians and the people of the United States, and obliged the Indians to surrender all who should commit any murder on our frontiers, certain banditti of them had from time to time infected the western frontier, stolen horses, taken boats, and murdered our citizens; that recently, before the killing of the Indians, for which Brady was now tried, several people from Ohio County, particularly Boggs, Paul Riley's family, and Mrs. Vanbuskirke, had been put to death; that to pursue the Indians who had committed these murders, and to recover some property stolen, a party of volunteers from Ohio County, of which Brady was one, crossed the Ohio, and led by the trail of the Indians towards the place where the killing happened, fired and killed those for whose death Brady was tried. It was proved by the oath of Keyashuta, an Indian chief, that the Delawares had long before let go the chain, that they, the Shawanese, Chippewas, Ottawas, Wyandots, and some renegade Mingoes, were in the battle against Gen. Harmer, 1790. It was also proved that the attack and firing of Capt. Kirkwood's house was by Delawares, that some of the instances of murder and rapine above mentioned were by Delawares, that the persons killed were Delawares and had in their possession some of the property just before taken from Ohio County, manifested an intention of proceeding to commit other murders on our citizens, and when fired on by those who attacked them, and whom they had just discovered, were in the act of sieving their guns; and, moreover, the relation of John Hamilton, a trader on the spot, satisfied the court of the malignant and hostile temper of those very Indians.
The chief justice, in a charge distinguished not less by learning than humanity, explained the laws of war and the right of putting enemies to death, urged the impropriety of killing those who might with safety be taken prisoners, and the baseness of killing women, lamented that any acts of outrage by our citizens should occasion retaliation on them- selves; but stating that, in his opinion, the Indians killed were hostile, directed, if the jury concurred in his opinion, of which he had no doubt, they should acquit the prisoner without leaving the bar. The jury did so, and the court ordered Capt. Brady to be discharged on payment of fees. —- Letter dated Pittsburgh, 25th May, 1793.
In relation to the testimony of Guyasutha, or Kyasbuta, in this case the late James Robs, Esq., who was Brady's counsel, told a characteristic story. The testimony of that Indian was so very strong in favor of the defendant that even his counsel was abashed. After the trial was over he spoke to Guyasutha, and rather expressed his surprise at the decided tone of his testimony, upon which the chief clapped his hand upon his breast and exclaimed, "Am I not the friend of Brady V It seems obvious that he considered himself as much bound to swear for his friend as he would be to fight in his defense.