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Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc.
found that the Indians and negroes combined had and intelligent Indian has informed me that the demanded a surrender of that work; the Spanish hostile party, by whom we have been annoyed, garrison was too weak to defend it, and there are two miles south of the Florida line, on a creek were circumstances reported producing a strong called Yellow Water, from whence they make conviction in my mind, that, if not instigated by incursions upon us. And yet I have received no the Spanish authorities, the Indians had received intimation from the Executive of the United the means of carrying on the war from that States which authorizes me to send troops into quarter; foreign agents, who have been long the Spanish territory. What orders have been practising their intrigues and villanies in this issued to General Jackson on that subject I know country, had free access into the fort; St. Marks not; nor indeed am I acquainted in any degree was necessary, as a depot, to insure success to with the arrangements on the part of the United my operations. These considerations determined States for prosecuting the present war. me to occupy it with an American force. An I should be glad to ascertain the views of the inventory of Spanish property, munitions of war, Government. We have no mails at present, and &c., has been taken and receipted for; personal I send this letter to Georgia by travellers whom rights and private property have been respected; I have met this evening on my route to St. Steand the commandant and garrison furnished with phens.
WM. W. BIBB. transportation to Pensacola. My correspondence Hon. Joan C. CALHOON, with the Spanish commandants, the evidences
Secretary of War. under which I acted, and a detailed account of my operations, will be furnished you as early as practicable. Success depends upon the rapidity
HEADQ'RS, DIVISION OF THE SOUTA, of my movements; to-morrow I shall march for
Boulegs' Town, Suwanee river, April 20, '18. the Suwanee river, the destroying of the estab
Sir: My last communication, dated Camp, belishments on which will, in my opinion, put a
fore St. Mark's, April 8, and those to which it final close to this savage war.
referred, advised you of my movements and operCaptain McKeever of the Navy, cruising at ations up to that date; and, as I then advised my request on this coast, has been fortunate you, I marched from that place on the morning enough to secure Francis, or Hillis Hajo, the of the 9th. On the evening of the 10th I was great prophet, and Hornattlemied, an old 'Red joined by the rear of the Tennessee volunteers, Stick chief. They visited his vessel under an also by the Indians under General McIntosh, impression they were English; from whom, as
whom I had left at Mickasukee to scour the counthey stated, supplies of munitions of war, &c., fry around that place. Although the weather under late promises, were expected. Arbuthnot, has been dry and pleasant, and the waters had a Scotchman, and suspected as an instigator of subsided in a great degree, our march might be this savage war, was found in St. Marks; he is said to have been through water, which kept the in confinement, until evidences of his guilt can infantry wet to the middle, and the depth of the be collected. I am your most obedient servant, swamps, added to the want of forage, occasioned ANDREW JACKSON,
the horses to give out daily in great numbers. Major Gen. commanding. On the morning of the 12th, near Econfianah,
or Natural Bridge, a party of Indians were disCamp, 14 MILES FROM Sr. MARKS, covered on the margin of a swamp, and attacked On march to Suwanee, April 9, 1818.
by General McIntosh, and about difty Tennessee From evidences furnished me by a Mr. Ham- volunteers, who routed them, killing thirty-seven bly, there is little room to doubt but that one of warriors, and capturing six men and ninety-seven the chiefs, found slain on the field, in advance of women and children; also recapturing a white the Mickasukian villages, was Kenhagee. Fran-woman who had been taken at the massacre of cis, or Hillis Hajo, and Hornattlemied, the prime Scout. The friendly Indians also took some horses instigators of this war, have been hung. The and about five hundred head of cattle from latter commanded the party who so inhumanly the enemy, who proved to be McQueen's party. sacrificed Scott and his companions. Colonel Upon the application of an old woman of the Dyer, with the remainder of the Tennessee vol- prisoners, I agreed that if McQueen was tied and unteers, is in the neighborhood, and will unite carried to the commandant of St. Mark's
, her with me to-morrow.
people should be received in peace, carried to the upper tribes of the Creek nation, and there pro
visioned until they could raise their own crops. At Manacks, April 15, 1818. She appeared much pleased with these terms, Dear Sir: Since I last wrote to you I have and I set her at liberty, with written instructions received intelligence which makes it necessary to the commandant of Sc. Mark's to that effect. for me to return to St. Stephens. I learn that the Having received no further intelligence from Indians who committed the lale murders in this McQueen, I am induced to believe the old woneighborhood were seen a few days since at Pen- man has complied with her part of the obligation. sacola. My situation is extremely unpleasant. From St. Mark's I marched with eight days' I am without funds for the protection of the ter-rations, those that joined me having but five; ritory, and totally ignorant of the views of the this was done under the expectation of reaching Government with respect to Florida. A friendly this place in that time, founded on the report of Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc. my faithful Indian guide, which I should have As soon as time will permit, I shall forward accomplished but for the poverty of my horses, you a detailed account of the various little affairs and the continued sheets of water through which with the enemy, accompanied with reports of we had to pass. On the morning of the 15th, my the commanding officers of detachments; suffice scouts overtook a small party of Indians, killing it for the present to add that every officer and one man, and capturing ihe residue, consisting of soldier under my command, when daoger apone man, and one woman and two children ; and peared, showed a steady firmness, which conon that evening I encamped, as my guide sup- vinced me that, in the event of a stubborn conposed, within twelve miles of Suwanee. I march- fict, they would have realized the best hopes of ed very early on the 15th, under the hope of being their country and General. able to encompass and attack the Indian and ne- I believe I may say that the destruction of this gro towns by one o'clock P. M., but much to my place, with the possession of St. Marks, having regret, at three o'clock, and after marching six- on the night of ihe 18th captured the late Lieuteen miles, we reached a remarkable pond, which tenant Ambrister, of the British marine corps, my guide recollected, and reported to be distant and, as represented by Arbuthnot, successor to six miles of the object of my march; here I should Woodbine, will end the lodian war for the preshave halted for the night, had not six mounted ent; and should it be renewed, the position taken, Indians, (supposed to be spies,) who were dis- which ought to be held, will enable a small party covered, effected their escape; this determined to put it down prompily. me to attempt, by a forced movement, to pre- I shall order, or take myself a reconnoissance vent the removal of their effects, and, if possi- west of the Appalachicola, at Pensacola point, ble, themselves, from crossing the river; for my where, I am informed, there are a few Red Sticks rations being out, it was all important to secure assembled, who are sed and supplied by the Gov. their supplies for the subsistence of my troops. ernor of Pensacola. My healih being impaired, Accordingly my lines of attack were instantly as soon as the duty is performed, the positions formed and put in motion ; and about sunset my taken, well garrisoned, and security given to the left flank column, composed of the 2d regiment of southern frontier, (if the Goveromeat have not Tennessee volunteers, commanded by Col. Will- active employ for me,) I shall return to Nashiamson, and a part of the friendly Indians under Col. ville to regain my health. The health of the Kanard, having approached the left flank of the troops is much impaired, and I have ordered the centre town and commenced their attack, caused Georgia troops to Hartford to be mustered, paid, me to quicken the pace of the centre, composed and discharged, the General having communiof the regulars, Georgia militia, and my volun-cated his wishes, and that of his troops, 10 be orteer Kentucky and Tennessee guards, in order to dered directly there, and reporting that they have press the enemy in his centre, whilst the right plenty of corn and beef to subsist them to that column, composed of the 1st regiment of Tennes-l point. I have written to the Governor of Georsee volunteers, under Colonel Dyer, and a part of gia to obtain from the State the necessary funds the friendly lodians, headed by General Melo-io pay General Glasscock's brigade when distosh, who had preceded me, were endeavoring to charged, and that the Government will promptly turn his left and cut off his retreat to the river, refund it. I am compelled to this mode to have They, however, having been previously informed them promptly paid, Mr. Hogan, the paymaster of our force, by a precipitate retreat, soon crossed of the 7th infantry, (for whom I received from the river, where it is believed Colonel Kanard, Mr. Brent an enclosure said to contain fifty thouwith his Indians, did him considerable injury: sand dollars,) not having reached me. Nine negroes and two Indians were found dead,
From the information received from Ambrisand two negro men made prisoners. On the 17th, ter, and Mr. Cook, who was captured with him, foraging parties were sent out, who found a con- that A. Arbuthnot's schooner was at the mouth siderable quantity of corn and some cattle. On of this river preparing to sail for the bay of Tam. the 18th, having obtained some small craft, I oro pa, my aid-de-camp, Lieutenant Gadsden, vol. dered General Gaines across the river with a strong detachment, and two days' provision, to descend the river and capture her. The impor
unteered his services with a small detachment to pursue the enemy; the precipitaocy of their tance of this vessel to transport my sick to St. fight was soon discovered by the great quantity Marks, as well as to destroy the means used by of goods, corn, &c., strewed through the swamps, the enemy, induced me to grant his request. He and convinced General Gaines that pursuit was sailed yesterday, and I expected to have heard in vain; nine lodians and five negro prisoners from him this morning. I only await his report were taken by our lodians. The evidence of the to take up the line of inarch on my return to St. haste with which the enemy had fled induced Marks. The Georgia brigade, by whom I send the General to confine his reconnoissance to search this, being about to march, compels me to close for cattle and horses; both of which were much it without the report of Lieutenant Gadsden. wanted by the army. About thirty head of cat
I have, &c. ile were procured, but, from the reports accompanying General Gaines's, which, in due time,
ANDREW JACKSON, will be forwarded to you, and the disobedience
Major General commanding. of his orders by the Indians, not one pound was Hon. John C. Calhoun, brought into camp.
Secretary of War.
HEADQʻRS, Division OF THE SOUTH, rectly down the Appalachicola river to meet with
Fort St. Mark's, April 20, 1818. and protect the expected supplies from New OrSir: I wrote you from Bowlegstown on the leans. These were received on the 25th of March, 20th iostant. On the night of the same day, I and on the next day I was prepared for active received the expected despatch from my aid-de-operations. For a detailed account of my movecamp, Lieutenant Gadsden, communicating the ments from that period to this day you are respectsuccess of his expedition, and on the next day, as fully referred to the report prepared by my adju. soon as the sick of my army were despatched tant general, accompanied with Captain' Hugh down the Suwanee river, to be conveyed in the Young's topographical sketch of the route and captured schooner to St. Mark's, I took up the distance performed. This has been principally a line of march for that fort. I arrived at this place war of movements. The enemy, cut off from last evening, performing a march of one hundred their strongholds, or deceived in the promised and seven miles in less than five days. Lieuten- foreign aid, have uniformly avoided a general enaot Gadsden had reached it a few hours before gagement. Their resistance has generally been me. He communicates having found among the feeble; and in the partial rencontres into which papers of Arbuthnot, Ambrister, and Cook, leiters, they seem to have been in voluntarily forced, the memorials
, &c., all pointing out the instigators regulars, volunteers, and militia, under my comof this savage war, and, in some measure, in mand, realized my expectations; every privation, volving the British Government in the agency. fatigue, and exposure was encountered with the These will be forwarded you in a detailed re- spirit of soldiers, and danger was met with a deport I purpose communicating to you as early as gree of fortitude calculated to strengthen the practicable.
confidence I had reposed in them. The old woman spoken of in my last commu
On the commencement of my operations, I was nication to you, who had promised to use her in- strongly impressed with a belief that this InHuence io baving McQueen captured and deliv- dian war has been excited by some un principled ered up, has not been heard of. From signs foreign or private agents. The outlaws of the discovered on the opposite shore of the St. Mark's old Red Stick party had been too severely conriver, I am induced iu believe that ihat Indian vinced, and the Seminoles were too weak in party is still in this neighborhood. A detach-numbers to believe that they could possibly alone meni will be sent out to reconnoitre the country, maintain a war with even partial success against to receive them as friends, if disposed to sur’ the United States. Firmly convinced, therefore, render, or inflict merited chastisement, if still that succor had been promised from some quarter, hostile.
or that they had been deluded into a belief that I shall leave this in two or three days for Fort America dare not violate the neutrality of Spain Gadsden, and after making all necessary arrange- by penetrating to their towns, I early determined ments for the security of the positions occupied, to ascertain these facts, and so direct my moveand detaching a force to scour the country west
ments as to undeceive the lodians. After the of the Appalachicola, I shall proceed direct for destruction of the Mickasukian villages, I marchNashville. My presence in this country can be ed for St. Mark's. The correspondence between no longer necessary. The Indian forces have myself and the Spanish commandant, in which I been divided and scallered, and cut off from all demanded the occupancy of that fortress with an communication with those un principled agents of American garrison, accompanies this. It had foreign pations who have deluded them to their been reported to me, direct from the Governor of ruin; they have not the power, if the will re- Pensacola, that the Indians and negroes unfriendmain, of again annoying our frontier.
ly to the United States had demanded of the comI remain, &c.
mandant of St. Mark's a supply of ammunition, ANDREW JACKSON, munitions of war, &c., threatening, in the event
Major Gen. commanding. of a noncompliance, to take possession of the fort. Hon. J. C. Calhoux,
The Spanish commandant acknowledged the deSecretary of War.
senceless state of his fortress, and his inability to defend it; and the Governor of Pensacola ex
pressed similar apprehensions. The Spanish HEADQ'RS, DivisiON OF THE SOUTH,
agents throughout the Floridas had uniformly disFort Gadsden, May 5, 1818. avowed having any connexion with the Indians, SIR : I returned to this post with my army on and acknowledged the obligations of His Catholic the evening of the 2d instant, and embrace an Majesty, under existing treaties, to restrain their early opportunity of furnishing you a detailed outrages against the citizens of the United States. report of my operations to the east of the Appa- Indeed, they declared that the Seminole Indians lachicola river. In the several communications were viewed as alike hostile to the Spanish addressed to you from Hartford, Fort Scott, and Government, and that the will remained, though this place, I have stated the condition of the army the power was wanting, to inflict merited chason my assuming the immediate command, the tisement on this lawless tribe. It was, therefore, embarrassment occasioned from the want of pro- to be supposed that the American army, impelled visions, the privations of my troops on their by the immutable laws of self-defence to pene. march' from the frontiers of Georgia, and the trate the territory of His Catholic Majesty, to circumstances which compelled me to move di- fight his battles, and even to relieve from a cruel
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, &c.
bondage some of his own subjects, would have wickedoess, corruption and barbarity, at which been received as allies, bailed 'as deliverers, and the heart sickens, and in which, in this enlight. every facility afforded to them to terminate ened age, it ought not scarcely to be believed speedily and successfully this savage war. Fort that a Christian nation would have participated; St. Mark's could not be maintained by the Span- and yet the British Government is involved in ish force garrisoning it. The Indians and ce- the agency. If Arbuthnot and Ambrister are groes viewed it as an asylum, if driven from not convicted as the authorized agents of Great their towns, and were preparing to occupy it in Britain, there is no room to doubt but that ibat this event. It was necessary to anticipate their Government had a knowledge of their assumed movements, independent of the position being character, and was well advised of the measures deemed essential as a depot, on which the suc- which they had adopted to excite the negroes cess of my future operations measurably depend- and Indians in East Florida to war against the ed. In the spirit of friendship, therefore, I de- United States. I hope the execution of these manded its surrender to the army of the United iwo unprincipled villains will prove an awful States uptil the close of the Seminole war. The example to the world, and convince the GovernSpanish commandant required time to reflect.ment of Great Britain, as well as her subjects, It was granted. A negotiation ensued, and an that certain, though slow retribution awaits ihose effort was made to protract it to an unreasonable uochristian wretches, who, by false promises, length. In the conversations between my aid delude and excite an Indian tribe to all the horde-camp, Lieutenant Gadsden, and the Spanish rid deeds of savage war. commandant, circumstances transpired convict- Previous to my leaving Fort Gadsden, I had ing him of a disposition to favor the Indians, occasion to address a communication io the and of having taken an active part in aiding and Governor of Pensacola on the subject of perabetting them in this war. I hesitated, there mitting supplies to pass up the Escambia river fore, no longer; and as I could not be received 10 Fort Crawford. "This letter, with another in friendship, I entered the fort by violence. from St. Mark's, on the subject of some United Two light companies of the 7th regiment of States' clothing, shipped in a vessel in the eminfantry, and one of the 4th, under the com- ploy of the Spanish Government, 10 that post, I mand of Major Twiggs, were ordered to ad- now enclose, with bis reply. The Governor of vance, lower the Spanish colors, and hoist the Pensacola's refusal of my demand cannot but be star-spangled banner on the ramparts of Fort viewed as evincing a hostile feeliog on his part, St. Mark's. The order was executed promptly. particularly in connexion with some circumNo resistance was attempted on the part of the stances reported to me from the most unquestionSpanish garrison. The 'duplicity of the Span- able authority: It has been stated that the Indians ish commandant of St. Mark's, in professing at war with the United States bave free access friendship towards the United States while he into Pensacola ; that they are kept advised from was actually aiding and supplying her savage that quarter of all our movements; that they are enemies, throwing open the gates of his garrison supplied from thence with ammunition and muto their free access, appropriating the King's nitions of war; and that they are now collecting stores to their use, issuing ammunition and mu- in large bodies, to the amount of four or five nitions of war to them, and knowingly purcha. hundred warriors, in that city; that inroads sing of them property plundered from the citi- from thence bave lately been made on the Alazens of the United States, is clearly evinced by bama, in one of which eighteen seuilers fell by the documents accompanying my correspond the tomahawk. These slatements com pel me to ence.
make a movement to the west of the AppalachiIn Fort Saint Mark's, as an inmate in the cola; and, should they prove correct, Pensacola family of the Spanish commandant, an English- must be occupied with an American force, the man, by the name of Arbuthnot, was found. Governor treated according to his deserts, or as Voable satisfactorily to explain the objects of policy may dictate. I shall leave strong garrisoas his visiting this country, and there being a com- in Fort St. Mark's, Fort Gadsden, and Fort Scott; bination of circumstances to justify a suspicion and in Pensacola, should it become necessary to that his views were not honest, he was ordered possess it. in close confinement. The capture of his schoon- Il becomes my duty to state it as my confirmed er, near the mouth of Suwanee river, by my aid- opinion that, so long as Spain has not the power de-camp, Lieutenant Gadsden, and ihe papers or will to enforce the treaties by which she is found on board, unveiled his corrupt transactions, solemnly bound to preserve the Indians within as well as those of a Captain Ambrister, late of her territory at peace with the United States, 00 the British colonial marine corps, taken as a security can be given 10 our southern frontier, prisoner near Bowlegs' town. These individu- without occupying a cordon of posts along the als were tried, under my orders, by a special seashore. The moment the American army recourt of seleci officers, legally convicted as ex- tires from Florida, the war hatchet will be again citers of this savage and negro war, legally con- raised, and the same scenes of indiscriminate masdemned, and most justly punished for their ini- sacre with which our frontier settlers have been quities. The proceedings of the couri-martial visited will be repeated. So long as the Indians in this case, with the volume of testimony jus- within the territory of Spain are exposed to the tifying their condemnation, present scenes of | delusions of false prophets, and the poison of
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc. foreign intrigue; so long as they can receive am- now advanced within a mile and a half of Kingmunition, munitions of war, &c.
, from pretended bajah's town, when a number of lodians were traders, or Spanish commandants, it will be im- discovered herding cattle on the margin of a large possible to restrain their outrages. The burning pond. The General ordered the right and left of their towns, the destroying of their stock and columns to advance, with a view of cutting off provisions, will produce but temporary embar. their retreat, and at the same time instructed the rassments; resupplied by Spanish authorities, advance light company, under Major Muhlenthey may concentrate or disperse at will, and burg, the guard, under Major Nicks, together with keep up a lasting predatory warfare against the the small companies composing his life guard, frontiers of the United States, as expensive to under Captains Dunlap and Crittenden, to adour Government as harassing to our troops. The vance in support of the spies, in the event of a savages, therefore, must be made dependant on general engagement. The spy companies comus, and cannot be kept at peace wiihout being menced the attack, and a brisk runding fire was persuaded of the certainty of chastisement being kept up on both sides for some minutes, when inflicted on the commission of the first offence. the enemy divided, the spy companies pursuing
I trust, therefore, that the measures which have those on the right; and Lieutenant Colonel Ellibeen pursued will meet the approbation of the ott having turned their flank, became generally President of the United States. They have been engaged, and bore them over to the left column, adopted in pursuance of your instructions, and under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Mitch under a firm conviction that they alone were cal- i ell, within half gunshot of each other, when they culated to insure "peace and security to the were assailed by both flanks, and would all have southern frontier of Georgia.".
fallen, had not the volunteers taken up the imThe army will move on the 7th from hence, pression, from the similarity of dress, that some crossing the Appalachicola river at the Ochesee of the friendly warriors had reached in pursuit of bluff, about thirty miles above this.
the enemy, which occasioned the firing to cease ANDREW JACKSON,
for a short time, when a number made good their Major Gen. commanding. retreat into the swamp. Captain Crittenden's Hon. J. C. Calhoun,
company, being on horseback, was unable to reach Secretary of War.
the head of Lieutenant Colonel Elliott's column, when they dismounted, and operated against the
enemy. Major Muhlenburg's company, the adHÉADQ’rs. DivisiON OF THE Souru,
vance guard, and Captain Dunlap's company, beAdj't Gen's Office, Fort Gadsden,
ing on foot, were not able to reach the scene of Appalachicola river, May 3, 1818.
action in time. The right column of Georgia SIR: I have the honor to report that the army militia, on nearing the pond, filed round it; and under the immediate command of Major General Colonel King; with his regiment, was ordered to Andrew Jackson took up the line of march on advance through it, to support the column of the 26th day of March last, with eight days' ra. borse, should it be found necessary; which was tions, and lay in advance of this post about six executed by the colonel with great promptness, miles on the 291h, at Okolokne river, when nine. The conduct of the officers and soldiers engaged teen canoes were made, and the principal part of on this occasion was, in every respect, praisethe army crossed by eight o'clock, P. M., ihe re-worthy; our loss, one man of Captain Andrews's sidue next morning; when the march was again company killed, and four of Captain Evans's comresumed at eleven o'clock, A. M. On this eve- pany of Tennessee volunteers wounded. The rening Brevet Major Twiggs of the 7th infantry poris give fourteen killed and several wounded was detached with one company and about two of the enemy, and four women prisoners, from hundred warriors, with orders to advance on an whom we learned that three hundred warriors Indian village called Tallahassie, and surprise it had advanced from the town to aid those engaat day-break. On his near approach, he des. ged, and, on seeing the advance of an army, fled patched a party to ascertain its situation, who re- precipitately. The army now advanced upon ported it evacuated some days before. On the ihe town, which was found deserted by the enmorning of the 31st be entered the village, having emy; and, on reaching the square, discovered a previously sent out parties to reconnoitre. Two red pole planted at the council-house, on which of the enemy were made prisoners, one of whom were suspended about fifty fresh scalps, taken made his escape from the Indians before he was from the heads of extreme age down to the tenbrought into camp. The army passed the village der infant of both sexes, and, in an adjacent house, about twelve o'clock, and encamped near Micka- near three hundred more, which bore the appearsuky, when intelligence was received of the ap- ance of having been the barbarous trophies of proach of a detachment of mounted volunteers settled hostility for three or four years past. from Tennessee, under the command of Lieuten- The army continued the pursuit to a large pona ant Colonel Elliott, near four hundred strong. of water, which is eight miles in length, varying On the morning of the 1st of April the army in width from six hundred to four thousand yards, formed and halted until their arrival, when they and from two to five feet deep, through which were ordered to form the advance of each flank, the army passed, when the approach of night inwith Captains Russell and Evans's companies, as duced the commanding General to draw off his spies, with Captain John Gordon. The army troops. On the succeeding morning, Brevet Ma