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Amount to the debit of Don B. G. Calderon
P. DALHASTE Y CLAVERIA. NEW ORLEANS, May 29, 1817.
United States and merchant at New Orleans.
PENSACOLA, May 14, 1818. Instructed, by your letter of yesterday, of the points treated of by Major General Jackson in his letter of the 27th ultimo, and on which he founds his positive assertions, that the Indians not only received succors at Appalachie, but that NEW ORLEANS, July 29, 1817. they were excited to commit their outrages On the receipt of yours, the caps were already against them, [the United States,] were advised agreed for with some other articles of clothing, of his movements, &c. I have, in answer, to amounting, as per invoice annexed, to $317 164, express the astonishment this affair has caused and which is charged to you in account. I me, and which has solely arisen from the imposhave suspended the purchase of the hats, which ture employed, by some malicious person, to ran at from eight to ten dollars, until further or- asperse the parties criminated by the letter of ders. Account of cost and charges of the follow-the said General. His excellency states, that, ing articles, shipped in two hogsheads, three barrels, two cases, and one sack, on board the schooner Jalouse, Jose Medina, master, bound to Pensacola, on account and at the risk of Don Benigno Garcia Calderon, and to be delivered to him on his order, viz:
Twenty-five pairs of cotton pantaloons, at fifty rials
Two hundred and thirty-six flannel waistcoats, at three hundred and seventy-two rials
Two hundred and fifty-three caps, at
A parcel of leather gaiters and coyars
Cooperage and transportation
Commission, at five per cent.
Amount to the debit of Don B. G. Calderon
from the papers and other proofs taken at St. John's, the detention of American cattle found at St. Mark's, and purchased of the commissary there, and the intercourse carried on between that place and the hostile Indians, it is evident that they were inspirited and excited to this cruel war by the Spaniards. To this I have to $12 50 reply, that it has never come to my knowledge that any person belonging to the fort had any intercourse, directly or indirectly, with St. John's; and although I wrote two letters to Mr. Arbuth not, an English merchant, one of them was merely to thank him for the three copies [exemplares] he sent me from thence or Savannah, and for the information he gave me of the intention of the insurgents at Amelia Island, and of Captain Woodbine, who I informed you by express was one of the two chiefs hung on the day I left Appalachie, or on the preceding one; and the other was to request him to come or send as speedily as possible for the effects which, at the request of the Indian chiefs, and to avoid increasing their suspicions, I permitted to be deposited in the fort on the departure of O'Kelagne, who had them in charge; and although by this step I ran some risk, from the state of excitement of both parties, it was one which does not appear to me to give any just ground for suspicion. Nor does the finding of American cattle, which his excellency states he purchased at St. Mark's, afford greater cause of suspicion, as it is notorisupplies were obtained from the droves of cattle ous that, from the time of its establishment, its brought there for sale by the Indians; and that they had many is shown from those found in Mickasukey and its vicinity. Purchases were only occasionally made, because we considered ourselves sufficiently supplied for some months; and if the cattle were stolen from the Americans, the sellers took good care to conceal that fact, and were all of them known to have droves, and were
P. DALHASTE Y CLAVERIA. Don B. G. CALDERON, Pensacola.
We, the undersigned, merchants of this place, hereby certify that the foregoing copies of paragraphs of letters of advice and of invoices are perfectly conformable to the originals exhibited to us by Captain Don Benigno Garcia Calderon, commanding the Grey and Brown companies from Havana; and that the signatures thereto subscribed are in the genuine hand writing of Don Pedro Dalhaste y Claveria, a citizen of the
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, &c.
in the habit of bringing them for sale; and very interest prevailed in the fort, he did not obtain it; seldom was it that the American commandant in consequence of which we were considered as or magistrate, within whose district these ex- American partisans to the last, were reproached cesses were committed, was known to complain with it, and had even to put up with some imof them to the commandant at St. Mark's, and pertinences from them. I'shall, however, in strict send him the marks of the cattle, that it might adherence to truth, and because the circumstance be seen from whence they came, and the purchase may have given rise to these suspicions, state that of them be avoided. Nor does the intercourse the chief Petisacho, who was hung, received, between the fort and the Indians, complained of among other things, at the fort, from Mr. Arbuthby General Jackson, afford any better evidence not, an English merchant, when he came from of what he asserts, that from this it is inferable Savannah to request aid against the negroes from that they were inspirited and excited to this cruel him on account of their molestation, a small barwar by the Spaniards. Such intercourse and rel of powder, which might contain from twenty good understanding were at all times recom- to twenty-five pounds, and which was kept with mended by the Government, and never more ne- the other effects brought from O'Kelagne's, and cessary than in the circumstances in which we which he had in charge. What he did with it I were placed in the fort; and on this, amongst know not, but I well know that the chief occaother reasons, General Jackson, in his first letter, sioned me much fear and anxiety, by being so founded his demand that it should be occupied near the fort with four or five hundred Indians of by his troops, and added, that on this account his party. I never had an idea that he employed such a course could not fail to be approved by it against the Americans, but supposed that they His Catholic Majesty. In the same letter he used it in the purchase of peltry for the said Arstated to me, that he had been informed by an In- buthnot, which was his avowed object, and in dian woman, a prisoner, that the Indians and ne- which he was engaged on the arrival of the groes had received large supplies of munitions Americans. The idea that the officers of St. from the fort. I thought I had convinced him of Mark's lent themselves to aid and excite the Inthe contrary in my answer, in which I repre- dians, by giving them information of the movesented to him that no one could better remove ments of the Americans, is highly ridiculous; from his mind any unfavorable impressions on for how, or from whence, could their movements this point, than the bearer of it, Mr. William be better known at the fort than from the InHambly, who, during his stay here, repeatedly dians themselves? Thither they passed, and interpreted to me the anxiety of the chiefs to ob- from thence repassed, incessantly, and their retain such supplies; and that he could also inform ports were so various that they deserved very him, that I uniformly counselled them to avoid little attention; as a proof of which, nothing certhe destruction which has overtaken them, and tain was known of the operations of the Ameriwhich I foresaw from the first. But as it appears cans until the different columns of their troops he is not yet satisfied, and persists in his charge, appeared. At the mouth of the Pinar, although a reference to the returns of the public storekeeper their three vessels were at anchor there for three will show that, from the month of May last, and or four days previous, they kept English colors prior to the receipt of your orders, there had been flying until the day before the arrival of the issued to some chiefs and head men, and that army. My different communications to you are merely from motives of policy, only three pounds pledges that I took no part in the contest between of powder, three pounds of balls, and fourteen the Americans and the Indians; nevertheless, my flints; and the interpreter belonging to the fort, mistrust of the latter evinced to which I gave a Juan Sandoval, and his son Francisco, through preference. How, then, is it possible to believe whom I communicated with the Indians, can also that I gave them the aid of which General Jacktestify to the truth of this statement, whose evi- son complains, or how can such aid be recondence I request of you to have taken, in refuta- ciled with the tenor of my letters and the steps tion of General Jackson's charge against me. He I took to liberate Messrs. Edmund Doyle and cannot but know that, a short time before the William Hambly, by which I exposed myself Negro fort on the Appalachicola was blown up, and my garrison to the vengeance of the Inall the chiefs of the tribes in its immediate vi- dians? Or, lastly, with the fact of my having cinity went there and supplied themselves with ransomed, at a most critical moment, an Ameripowder and ball left for them by the English; can soldier, whom they declared to me they would and that at Mickasuky, and the houses in the otherwise put to death? I leave it to the most neighborhood, there was a great quantity. Hav-impartial to decide, if these be not proofs of the ing thus obtained so large a supply of the kind of existence, at St. Mark's, of a bias in favor of the powder and ball they most esteemed, what value American interest; and of this, I am persuaded, could they set on ours, which they in fact view General Jackson will be convinced on deliberwith such indifference and contempt, that only erately reflecting on the subject. I shall not those hunters, of whom now and then one comes deny that I have observed towards those barbato the fort to supply us with venison, geese, &c., rians a policy which had the appearance of a will use it; and although, as I stated in my com- warm friendship, and by which I have incurred munication to you, some was repeatedly requested considerable expenses. If, however, all the cirof me by the chief Kinache, for the purpose of cumstances attendant on my situation be duly showing, by the refusal of it, that the American | weighed, it will be seen that all this was neces
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, &c.
sary to restrain them from doing what they had at one time premeditated, on the pretext I have just alluded to, and on others suggested to them by some persons who had gone hence to those parts of the country. Although I have, as I conceive, given satisfaction on all the points embraced by Major General Jackson in his letter, I beg leave to request that, for fuller evidence of what I allege, you will be pleased to give orders for having the testimony taken of the interpreter and his son, of the subaltern Don Miguel Ordonez, of Don Anastasio Montes de Oca, the military storekeeper, and of surgeon Don Diego de Barrias, as these persons have some knowledge of the subject in question. God preserve, &c. FR. CASO Y LUENGO.
Don JosE MAZOT.
PENSACOLA, May 23, 1818. It having come to my knowledge that you have passed the frontiers with the troops under your command, and that you are within the territory of this province of West Florida, which is subject to my government, I solemnly protest against this procedure as an offence against my Sovereign, exhorting you, and requiring of you, in his name, to retire from it; as, if you do not, and continue your aggressions, I shall repel force by force.
The consequence in this case will, doubtless, be the effusion of blood, and also an interruption of the harmony which has hitherto reigned between our respective nations; but, as the repeller of an insult has never been deemed the aggressor, you will be responsible, both to God and man, for all the fatal consequences which may result. God preserve you many years.
exposed to all the horrors of a cruel and savage war. A party of outlaws and refugees from the Creek nation, negroes who have fled from their masters, citizens of the United States, and sought an asylum in Florida, and the Seminole Indians, inhabiting the territory of Spain, all uniting, have raised the tomahawk, and, in the character of savage warfare, have neither regarded sex nor age; helpless women have been massacred, and the cradle crimsoned with the blood of innocence. The United States, true to their own engagements, and confiding in the faith of Spain to enforce existing treaties, never entertained a doubt but that these atrocities would early attract the attention of the Spanish Government, and that speedy and effectual measures would have been adopted for their suppression. Under this persuasion, a cordon of military posts was established to give immediate protection to such of our frontier settlers as were peculiarly exposed, and strict injunctions issued to the American officers to respect the territory of Spain, and not to attempt operations within its limits. These instructions were most scrupulously observed; and, notwithstanding the inactivity of the American troops had encouraged the Indians to the most daring and outrageous acts of violence against our citizens, the Government of the United States was still disposed to respect the territory of Spain, and confide in the ability of the Spanish Govern ment to execute existing treaties, until advised through you that, with every disposition, the Spanish authorities had not the power of conlate were viewed as equally hostile to the intertrolling the Indians in Florida; that their acts of ests of Spain as those of the United States; that Spanish subjects were not exempted from the evils of which we complained, and that the negro establishment on the Appalachicola, and St. Juan rivers, were founded by British agents, contrary to mined the President of the United States to adopt the will of Spain. Those representations detereffectual measures to restore tranquillity to the Southern frontier of the American Republic; and, pursuant to his orders, justifiable by the immutable laws of self-defence, I have penetrated into Florida, reduced to ashes the Seminole villages, destroyed their magazines of provisions, beaten their warriors whenever they hazarded a contest, dispersed some, and expelled others across the river.
In the course of my operations, it became necessary to visit the Spanish fortress of St. Mark's. Entering the territory of Spain to fight her battles, to relieve from bondage her subjects, and to chastise an Indian tribe whom she acknowledged, under existing treaties, she was bound to preserve at peace with the United States, I had every reason to expect that the American army would have been received as friends, and every facility afforded to insure success to operations so interesting to both Governments.
My expectations have not been realized. It had been reported to me, direct from you, that Fort St. Mark's had been threatened by the Indians and negroes, and you expressed serious ap
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, &c.
prehensions, from the weakness of the garrison, and defenceless state of the works, for its safety. From other sources, to be relied on, the same information had been furnished me. It became necessary, therefore, to anticipate the movements of the enemy, and amicably to get possession of a work, the dislodging the enemy from which might cost me much precious blood.
tain, and agents disposed to enforce, existing treaties.
This is the third time that the American troopshave been compelled to visit Pensacola from the same causes. Twice had the enemy been expelled, and the place left in quiet possession of those who had permitted the irregular occupancy. This time it must be held until Spain has the power or
On entering St. Mark's, evidence of the dupli-will to maintain her neutrality. city and unfriendly feelings of the commandant evinced itself. I found that the gates of his fort had been thrown open to the avowed savage enemies of the United States. That councils of war had been permitted to be held within his own quarters by the chiefs and warriors. That the Spanish store houses had been appropriated to the use, and were then filled with goods belonging to the hostile party. That cattle, knowingly plundered from the citizens of the United States, had been contracted for and purchased by the officers of the garrison, from the Spanish thieves. That foreign agents had free access within the walls of St. Mark's, and a Mr. Arbuthnot, condemned and executed as the instigator of this war, an inmate in the commandant's family.
From this fort was information afforded the enemy of the strength and movements of my army by the said Arbuthnot, the date of departure of express noted by the Spanish commissary, and ammunition, munitions of war, and all necessary supplies furnished.
On my return from my operations east, your letter was received, positively refusing to permit (unless exorbitant duties were paid) any provisions passing up to the American fort on the Escambia. Connected with this strong indication of an unfriendly disposition on your part, I have learnt, from the most unquestionable au.thority, that the city of Pensacola has, for some months past, been entirely under the control of the Indians; that free ingress and egress is permitted to the avowed savage enemy of the United States; the supplies of ammunition, munitions of war, and provisions, have been received by them from thence; that on the 15th of April last there were no less than five hundred Indians in Pensacola, many of them known to be hostile to the United States, and who had but lately escaped my pursuit. The late massacre of eighteen individuals on the Federal road was committed by Indians, direct from their return to Pensacola, who were received by you and transported across the bay, to elude the pursuit of the American troops. The Americans returning, the savages were permitted to return. An Indian, wounded in pursuit by a party, for having killed a citizen of the United States, was openly, in the sight of many Americans, received by you, and every comfort administered. Such practices, if authorized by the King, would justify me in open hostilities. Disposed, however, to believe that it was one of the unauthorized acts of agents, I deem it politic and necessary to occupy Pensacola and the Barancas with an American garrison, until the Spanish Government can be advised of the circumstance, and have force sufficient to main
This is justifiable on the immutable principles of self-defence. The Government of the United States is bound to protect her citizens; but weak would be all its efforts, and ineffectual the best advised measures, if the Floridas are to be free to every enemy, and on the pretext of policy or necessity, Spanish fortresses are to be opened to their use, and every aid and comfort afforded. I have been explicit, to preclude the necessity of a tedious negotiation. My resolution is fixed, and I have strength enough to enforce it. My army now occupies the old fort St. Michael, commanding Pensacola. If the town and the Barancas are peaceably surrendered, an inventory of all the property, ammunition, arms, &c. shall be taken by officers appointed by both parties, and the amount receipted for by me, to be accounted for by the American Government. The property of Spanish subjects shall be respected; their religion and laws guarantied to them; the civil Government permitted to remain as now established, subject to the control of the military authority of the United States; the ingress and egress open to all individuals; commerce free to the subjects of Spain as usual; and the military furnished with transportation to Cuba.
If the peaceable surrender be refused, I shall enter Pensacola by violence, and assume the gov ernment until the transaction can be amicably adjusted by the two Governments. The military in this case must be treated as prisoners of war.
The proof supporting the accusation against your official station will justify this procedure.
In reply to your communication of the 22d instant, I have only to observe that the clothing detained will be a subject of future friendly settlement.
How far the Indians, permitted to remain in the neighborhood of Pensacola, were friendly disposed to the citizens of the United States, is tested by the late massacre committed by them on the Alabama.
The Red Ground chiefs, Muldecoxy and Holmes, avowedly hostile to the United States, were but lately seen in Pensacola, and a body of Indians descried a few days since in the vicinity of Barancas, in presence of several Spanish officers.
By a reference to my communications of the 25th of March, you will see how far I have been the aggressor in the measure protested against. You are there distinctly advised of the objects of my operations, and that every attempt on your part to succor the Indians, or prevent the passage of my provisions in the Escambia, would be viewed in no other light than as hostile acts on your part.
You have done both, and exposed my troops to
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, &c.
the severest privations, by the detention occasioned by the exaction of duties on my provisions and vessels in Pensacola. You have, therefore, been the aggressor, and the blood which may be shed by a useless resistance on your part to my demand will rest on your head. Before God and man you will be responsible.
This will be handed to you by my aid-de-camp, Captain Gadsden, by whom an answer is pected.
Don JOSE MAZOT,
tions, and who is the bearer of these.) and I believe all the military, and of course broke up the seven posts [punta] stationed with the same number of officers and two chiefs for the maintenance of the tranquillity of the place.
These facts being incontrovertible, I ask who but your excellency will be responsible for the blood that may be shed, as you declare, in your ex-letter, that you are about to take possession of Pensacola and Barancas? I protest before God and man that my conduct is blameless, and that my ardent desires are, as they ever have been, to contribute to the peace and tranquillity of our respective nations; for, besides the sincerity of my intentions, I have in view the Message of the President to the Congress of the United States on the 25th of March last, and its tenor assured me that no aggressions were to be expected from the troops of the said States. Such, however, this province has unfortunately suffered from the operations of your excellency in Appalachee and Pensacola.
FORTRESS OF ST. CHARLES, OF BARANCAS, May 24, 1818. MOST EXCELLENT SIR: I received, at 10 o'clock this morning, the two communications of your excellency of the 23d and of this day. As I have, in mine of the 18th instant, satisfactorily answered all the charges your excellency alleges in the former, I shall only add, with respect to the Indians, that I notice your excellency is greatly misinformed, as the circumstances to which you refer are, for the most part, unfounded; in proof of which I will state, that the only two Indians I have found since the peace negotiated by me, and the delivery of the eighty seven to Major Young, are two who are in the prison, with three women and children. I ought to inform you that, long before the movements of your excellency, I had given orders at Appalachee that the Seminole Indians should not be succored, and even had placards posted up in Pensacola for the same purpose; passing over without notice only some unfortunate beings who, from time immemorial, had furnished the people with wood, as I have
I expect from the generosity of your excellency, first, that you will set the officers and troops which garrisoned Pensacola at liberty; and that, after supplying your army with provisions, you will shortly evacuate the territory of this province, and not carry on a partial war against West Florida at a time when our nations are in profound peace.
Lieutenant Colonel Don Lui Piemas, temporary commandant of Pensacola, is duly authorized to exercise my functions, and to receive the communications of your excellency, which he will faithfully remit to me, and to which I will give the promptest answers, to be transmitted to you through the bearer of this, the interpreter, Don Pedro de Alba. Finally, if, contrary to my hopes, your excellency should persist in your intention to occupy this fortress, which I am resolved to defend to the last extremity, I shall repel force by force; and he who resists aggression can never be considered an aggressor.
God preserve your excellency many years.
Your excellency lays to my charge the blood which may be shed by my refusal to deliver up the province, as your excellency requests; which I shall never do, nor can I, without covering myself with dishonor at the close of my life and of my long military career. I am firmly persuaded your excellency would, in my case, do the same, as you would not venture to stain the honorable laurels with which you are adorned. No nation, whatever may be its motives, can violate the territory of another, especially when no demands have previously been made of its Government. Pensacola, May 25, 1818. Your excellency has violated the Spanish terri- SIR: The accusations against you are founded tory in Appalachee, by taking possession of that on the most unquestionable evidence. I have the fort, and pulling down its flag, when you could certificates of individuals who, on the 23d instant, have adopted more conciliatory measures, which at or near the little bayou, counted seventeen Inwould more and more have cemented and strength-dians in company of several Spanish officers. ened the good understanding existing between our respective Governments.
HEADQ'RS, DIVISION OF THE SOUTH,
I have only to repeat that the Barancas must be occupied by an American garrison, and again On the 21st of the present month, by your ex- to tender you the terms offered, if amicably surcellency's order, Don Pedro Philibert, and other rendered. Resistance would be a wanton sacriinhabitants, remained prisoners in their houses, fice of blood, for which you and your garrison on their parole of honor. To-day, at 11 o'clock, will have to atone. You cannot expect to defend before Captain Gadsden arrived at Pensacola, yourself successfully, and the first shot from your your excellency's army entered, and made prison- fort must draw down upon you the vengeance of ers on parole Don Pedro de Alba, the interpreter, an irritated soldiery. I am well advised of your (who translated your before named communica-strength, and cannot but remark on the inconsis