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Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc. ahead ever since I have been down"; the rudder charge, and guilty of the second charge; and do of the vessel is in a bad condition, but I will therefore sentence the prisoner, Robert C. Ammanage to have it done to-night; the wind, I brister, to suffer death by being shot, two-thirds of am in hopes, will be fair in the morning, when the court concurring therein. I will get under weigh and make all possible One of the members of the court requesting a despatch. I will make old Lewis pilot me safe. reconsideration of his vote on the sentence, the If these Indians don't conduct themselves straight, sense of the court was taken thereon, and decided I would use rigorous means with them ; beware in the affirmative; when the vote was again taof Mr. Jerry; I found him on board when I came; ken, and the court sentence the prisoner to receive keep a good look out. I have sent two kegs of fifty stripes on his bare back, and be confided with powder, and one bar of lead. Yours, &c. a ball and chain to hard labor for twelve calendar
R. C. A. months.
The court adjourned sine die. Question by the prisoner. Did you not fre
EDMUND P. GAINES, quently hear me say that I would have nothing
Major General, Pres't of the Court. to do with the Indians in exciting them to war
J. M. GLASSELL, Recorder. with the United States ? Answer. I do not recollect.
DEFENCE M. Question by the prisoner. Are you acquainted with Lewis Phenix, and have you not heard
Fort St. Marks, April 28, 1818. him express ill-will against me in consequence
The United States of America ts. Robert of my wishing him to pilot me to St. Mark's ?
Christy Ambrister. Answer. I never did.
Who being arraigned before a special courtQuestion. Do you know of my sending troops martial upon the following charges, io wit: at any time to fight against the United States, and 1st. Aiding, abetting, and comforting the enehave I not been constantly with you, so that you my; supplying them with the means of war; be would have had an opportunity of knowing if being a subject of Great Britain at peace with there had been any sent by me ?
the United States, and lately an officer in the Answer. I have not; they might have been British colonial marines. sent without my knowledge.
Charge 2d. Sending and commanding the
Lower Creek Indians in carrying on war agaiøst JACOB HARMON, a witness on the part of the the United States. prosecution, being duly sworn, stated ibat, some To the first charge the prisoner at the bar pleadtime in the latter end of March, or first of April, ed not guilty, and as to the second charge he the prisoner took possession of the schooner pleaded guilty, and justification. The prisoner Chance, with an armed party of negroes, and at the bar feels grateful to this honorable court stated his intentions of taking St. Mark's; on his for their goodness in giving him a sufficient time way thither, going ashore, he learned from some to deliberate, and arrange his defence on the above Indians that Arbuthnot bad gone on to St. Mark's, charges. The prisoner at the bar here avails which induced him to return. The witness also himself of the opportunity of stating to this court stated that, while the prisoner was on board, he that, inasmuch as the testimony which was in. had complete command of the negroes who con- troduced in this case was very explicit, and went sidered him as their captain. The prisoner took to every point the prisoner could wish, he has the cargo of the vessel up towards Suwanee, nothing further to offer in his defence, but puts which consisted of, with other articles, pine kegs himself upon the mercy of the honorable court. of powder, and five hundred pounds of lead.
ROBERT C. AMBRISTER. The evidence on both sides being closed, the prisoner was allowed until five o'clock this even- HEADQ’rs, DivisioN OF THE South, ing to make his defence.
Ad’jt Gen's Office, camp 4 miles north of The time allowed the prisoner for the prepara
St. Mark's, April 29, 1818. tion of his defence having expired he was brought before the court, and made the defence marked
GENERAL ORDERS. M, which is attached to these proceedings. At a special court-martial, commenced on the
The court was then cleared, and the proceed. 26th instant at St. Mark's, and contined until the ings read over by the recorder, when, after due 28th, of which brevet Major General E. P. Gaines deliberation on the testimony brought forward, is president, was tried A. Arbuthnot on the folthe court find the prisoner, Robert C. Ambrister, lowing charges and specifications, viz: guilty of so much of the specification to the firsi Charge 1st. Exciting and stirring up the Creek charge as follows, viz: "and did excite them to Indians to war against the United States and war with the United States by sending their war- her citizens; he, Å. Arbuthnot, being a subject riors to meet and fight the American army, he of Great Britain, with whom the United States being a subject of Great Britain, which Govern- are at peace. ment was al peace and friendship with the United Charge 2d. Acting as a spy, aiding, abetting, States and all her citizens;" but not guilty of the and comforting the enemy, and supplying them other part of the specification : guilty of the first with the means of war. charge; guilty of ihe specification of the second CHARGE 3d. Exciting the Indians to murder
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc.
and destroy William Hambly and Edward Doyle, The special court, of which Brevet Major Genconfiscate their property, and causing their arrest eral E. P. Gaines is President, is dissolved. with a view to their condemnation to death, and By order of Major
General Jackson. the seizure of their property, they being citizens
ROBERT BUTLER, Adj. Gen. of Spain, on accouni of their active and zealous Adj't AND Ins. Gen's Office, exertions to maintain peace between Spain, the United States, and the lodians.
September 23, 1818. To which charges the prisoner pleaded not
A true copy from the original papers on file guilty. The court, after mature deliberation on
in this office. the evidence adduced, find the prisoner, A. Ar- DEPARTMENT OF WAR, Aug. 14, 1818. buthoot, guilty of the first charge, and guilty of Sir: I enclose for your information a copy of the second charge, leaving out the words "act-the orders to General Gaines, growing out of the ing as a spy;" and, after mature reflection, sen- late decision of the President, relative to St. tence him, A. Arbuthnot, to be suspended by ilie Mark's and Pensacola. [See letter to General peck until he is dead.
Gaines of August 14, 1818.] Was also tried Robert C. Ambrister on the I was directed by the President to wait the refollowing charges, viz:
ply of the Spanish Minister to Mr. Adams's let. CHARGE 1st. Aiding, abetting, and comfort- ier to him, which, not being received until the ing the enemy, and supplying them with the day before yesterday has caused so great a delay means of war, he being a subject of Great Brit- as to render it necessary to send the orders direct aio, (who are at peace with the United States,) to General Gaines, without passing them through and late an officer in the British colonial marines. you. I have, &c. CHARGE 2d. Leading and commanding the
J. C. CALHOUN. Lower Creek lodians in carrying on a war against Major Gen. ANDREW JACKSON. the United States.
Nashville Tennessee. To which
charges the prisoner pleaded as fol. lows, viz: To the first charge not guilty ; to the second charge guilty, and justification.
The following depositions and documents acThe court, on examination of evidence, and companied Mr. Lacock's report made to the Senon mature deliberation, find the prisoner, Robert ate on the 24th of February, 1818: C. Ambrister, guilty of the first and second
No. 1. charges, and do therefore sentence him to suffer death by being shot. The members requesting
DEPARTMENT OF WAR, Feb. 10, 1819. a reconsideration of the vote on this sentence, and it being bad, they sentence the prisoner to letter of the 8th instant, I now transmit an extract
Sir: Agreeably to the request made in your receive fifty stripes on his bare back, and be confined with a ball and chain to hard labor for of General Jackson's letter of the 10th of August twelve calendar months.
last, and a copy of General Jackson's order to
General Gaines, of the 7th of last August, in reThe Commanding General approves the find-lation to St. Augustine; a copy of the order to ing and sentence of the court in the case of A. General Gaines, of the 1st of September; and an Arbuthnot, and approves the finding and first extract of the answer to General Jackson's letter sentence of the court in the case of Robert C. of the 10th of August, 1818; which comprehend Ambrister, and disapproves the reconsideration all the information required by the committee. of the sentence of the honorable court in this I have the honor to be, &c. case. It appears from the evidence and pleading
J. C. CALHOUN. of the prisoner that he did lead and command, Hon. ABNER LACOCK, Chairman, fc. within the territory of Spain, (being a subject of Great Britain,) the Indians in war against the
No. 2. United States, those nations being at peace. It is aa established principle of the laws of nations
Heada'RS, DIVISION OF THE SOUTH, that any individual of a nation making war
Nashville, January 12, 1818. against ihe citizens of another nation, they being SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the real peace, forfeits his allegiance, and becomes aa ceipt of your order of the 26th ultimo, which outlaw and pirale ; this is the case of Robert C. reached me last night; its contents are duly noted, Ambrister, clearly shown by the evidence ad- and will be promptly attended to. duced.
I have received no late advices from General The Commanding General orders, that Brevet Gaines, although I have for some time expected A. C. W. Fanning, of the corps of artillery, will the return of the express sent to him on the 24th bave, between the hours of eight and nine o'clock, of November last. Taking into view the strength A. M., A. Arbuthnot suspended by the neck, with of the Seminoles and their adherents, as reported a rope, until he is dead, and Robert C. Ambris- to you by General Gaines, and the aggregate of ter to be shot to death, agreeably to the sentence his strength, regulars and militia, amounting to of the court.
but one thousand eight hundred men, which can. John James Arbuthnot will be furnished with not possibly afford a like number of effectives; a passage to Pensacola by the first vessel. considering, likewise, that the greater portion of Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc. his forces are draughted militia, from Georgia, Should the one thousand volunteer mounted who may apply for their discharge at the expira- gun-men attend to my appeal to their patriotism, tion of ihree months from the time they were I shall send on a confidential agent to Georgia, first mustered, and who may be disposed to claim to bave the necessary supplies for them procured this right, and abandon the campaign, about the and forwarded by the quartermaster, if any there, time I could reach Fort Scott, I have deemed it to Fort Gaines; and, if none, by the agent sent, both prudent and advisable to call from the west with instructions to draw on Quartermaster Genend of the State of Tennessee for one thousand eral Gibson for the amount of his purchases; this volunteer mounted gun-men, to serve during the is done to facilitate the march of the volunteers campaign. With this force, in conjunction with called for. I need not observe that, without quarthe regular troops, I can aci prompily, and, with termaster's sunds, an army cannot be wielded the smiles of Heaven, successfully, against any either with promptitude or effect. Promptitude force that can be concentrated by ihe Seminoles in the present campaign will be a great saving to and their auxiliaries. Viewing, however, the lives the United States, both in character and purse. of our citizens as too precious to be risked in a I have the honor to be, &c. contest with savages, with the odds of iwo to
ANDREW JACKSON, one, unless where real necessity demands the ex
Major General Commanding. posure, I have therefore written to the Governor Hon. Joon C. Calhoun, Sec'ry of War. of Georgia to continue in the field the one thou. sand men required by General Gaines.
No. 5. The result of the appeal I have made to the Extract of a letter from Major General Jackson to patriotism of those brave men in West Tennes
Brevet Major General Gaines, dated see, who have so often followed me to the field of danger, will be known by the 19th instant, and I
NASHVILLE, August 7, 1818. hope to leave this for Fort Scott on the 22d. Of I am happy to find that the notorious Micco de my movements, and success in raising the mount. Cozey is at length destroyed. The distress of ed volunteers, you shall be advised.
the Indians for provisions I expected. Your proIt may appear to the Government, on the first viding for their wants meets my entire approbapiew, that mounted men are the most expensive; tion; it will meet the entire approbation of the but when we consider the rapidity of their move- Government, as it corresponds with the usual ments, the amount of quariermaster's expendi- humanity extended to the suffering Indians. tures for pack-horses, baggage-wagons, and other
I have noted with attention Major Twiggs's means of transport indispensable to footmen, in letter, marked No. 5. I contemplated that the this instance saved, mounted gun-men, as auxil- agents of Spain, or the officers of Fort St. Auiaries in such a campaign as the one contem- gustine, would excite the Indians to hostiliiy, and plated, will be found to save both blood and trea. furnish them with the means of war. It will be sure to the United States. The volunteers that necessary to obtain evidence substantiating this have been invited to the field are of tried mate. fact, and that the hostile Indians have been fed rials, and such as can be relied on in the day of and furnished from the garrison of St. Augustine. danger and trial. With respect, &c.
This being obtained, should you deem your force ANDREW JACKSON, sufficient, you will proceed to, lake, and garrison,
Major General commanding. Fort St. Augustine with American troops, and Hon. J. C. CALHOUN, Sec'ry of War.
hold the garrison prisoners until you bear from
the President of the United States, or transport I feel myself much at a loss for correct topo them to Cuba, as, in your judgment, under exist. graphical information of the country occupied ing circumstances, you may think best. by ihe Seminole Indians, and particularly of ihat portion which may possibly become the seat of carried on by me, or this order, are not on the
Let it be remembered, that the proceedings war. Should there be any maps, plans, or charts, ground that we are at war with Spain. It is on of the section of country alluded io, in the secret The ground of self-preservation, bottomed on the bureau of the War Department, you will oblige broad basis of the law of nature and of nations, me by having a copy transmitted to Fort Scott and justified by giving peace and security to our as early as practicable.
frontier; hence the necessity of procuriog evi. A. J.
dence of the fact of the agents or otficers of No. 3.
Spain having excited the lodians to continue the
war against us, and that they have furoisbed HEADQ’RS, DIVISION OF THE SOUTA, them with the means of carrying on the war.
Nashville, January 13, 1818. This evidence being obtained, you will (if your Sir: Being advised that the assistant deputy force is sufficient) permit poihing to prevent you quartermaster general of General Gaines's bri- from reduciog Fort St. Augustine, except a posgade has resigned, and being udadvised as to itive order from the Department of War. quartermaster's funds within the sevenib depart- Orders, some time since, have been given to the ment, I have to request that necessary funds be officer of ihe ordoance commanding at Charleston, forwarded to Quartermaster General Gibson, at to have in readiness a complete batteriog train, Fort Scott, whom I have ordered to meet me at the number and caliber of the guns pointed out. that place without loss of time.
I have no doubt you will find them in readiness.
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc.
I enclose you the report of Captain Henley of the points now occupied by our troops, and a war the paval force on that station. You will open ensues, an attempt will no doubt be made to a correspondence with Commandant A. G. Dal penetrate our country by the Appalachicola, and, las, to insure his co-operation, provided it should by the aid of the Indians, to reach the Mississippi be required. I trust, before this reaches you, you at or above the Chickasaw Bluffs. Should this will have destroyed the settlement collected at be done with a formidable force, in our unpreSuwanee; this can easily be done by a coup de pared state, it is highly probable that the enemy main, provided secrecy of your movements be might reach the banks of the Mississippi. Occuobserved, and a great expedition of march used. pying these points will prevent the danger of Without expedition of movement, and great cau: such an occurrence; surrender them, and I would tion, you will be discovered, and ihe enemy will not, without a much stronger force, hold myself flee, or endeavor to ambuscade you; both of which responsible for the safety of my division. But ought to be guarded against.
with those points fortified as recommended, and Have a careful eye to your supplies on hand, with an effective force of five thousand men, I that, before they are consumed, others may be pledge my life upon defending the country, from ordered and reach you. Without necessary sup- St. Mary's to the Barrataire, against all the machplies, an army cannot operate with effect. The inations and attacks of the Holy Alliance and late scarcity ought to teach us a lesson on this combined Europe. head, never to be forgotten. I therefore expect By Captain Gadsden you will receive some that 'no scarcity will bappen at any place, post, letters, lately enclosed to me, detailing the inforor garrison, intrusted to your care. I shall ex- mation that the Spaniards at Fort St. Augustine pect to hear from you shortly; and that you and were again exciting the Indians to war against us, your brigade may be successful in all your opera- and a copy of my order to General Gaines upon tions, and cover yourselves with glory, is my this subject. It is what I expected, and proves heartfelt wish.
the necessity and sound policy of not only hold. I am, very respectfully, yours, &c. ing the posts which we are now in possession of, ANDREW JACKSON,
but likewise of our possessing ourselves of Fort Major General commanding.
St. Augustine. This alone can insure peace and
security on our Southern frontier. No. 6.
It is alone by a just and bold course of conduct
that we can expect to obtain and insure respect HEADQ'RS, Division OF THE Sooth,
from Europe, and not by a timid, temporizing Nashville, August 10, 1818.
policy. The first commands admiration and esCaptain Gadsden will likewise deliver you bis ieem, the latter contempt. But, from the comporeport, made in pursuance of my order, accom-sition of the present Administration, I can never panied with the plans of the fortifications thought suppose that ihey will abandon rights, or assume necessary for the defence of the Floridas, in con la timid and temporizing course of policy. I nexion with the line of defence un our Southern therefore conclude ibat the posts will never be frontier. This was done under the belief that surrendered, unless upon the terms agreed on in Government will never jeopardize the safety of the the capitulation, and then it guarantied that those Union, or the security of our frontier, by surren- terms will be punctually fulfilled ; particularly dering those posts, unless upon a sure guaranty, when it is recollected that, unless this is done, agreeably to the stipulations of the articles of our frontier will be exposed to all the scenes of capitulation, that will insure permanent peace, blood and massacre heretofore experienced ; and tranquillity, and security, to our Southern fron- to regain them will cost us much blood and treatier. It is believed that Spain can never furnish sure, in the event of a war. The security of the this guaranty. As long as there are lodians in Western States renders it necessary that they Florida, and it possessed by Spain, they will be should be held: the voice of the people will de. excited to war and the indiscriminate murder of mand it. But upon this, as well as every other our citizens, by foreign agents and Spanish offi- subject, I refer you to Captain Gadsden. cers. The conduct of Spain for the last six I have the honor to be, &c. years fully proves this. It was under the belief
ANDREW JACKSON, ihat the Floridas would be held, that my orders
Major General commanding. to make the report were given to Captain Gads- Hon. J. C. Calhoun, Sec'y of War. den. To this I refer you ; its perusal will show you how important it is, not only to the defence
No. 7. and security of the frontier, but to the whole United States. It points to our vulnerable points,
DEPARTMENT OF WAR, Sept 1, 1818. and shows our country can and was intended to Sir: General Jackson has transmitted to this be invaded, during the last war, from this quar. Department a copy of his letter to you of the 7th ter; and that the attempt would have been made, ultimo. It is to be presumed that his orders in had not the Creek Indians been subdued previous relation to St. Augustine were given before he to the arrival of the British troops; and, after was apprized of the decision of the President in wards, their attempt to gain possession of Mo. relation to St. Mark's and Pensacola; as the prinbile bay was frustrated by the repulse they met ciple on which that decision was made would with at Fort Bowyer. If possession is given of equally extend to the case of St. Augustine. You
Defeat of the Seminole Indians, fc. will accordingly not carry that part of General desirous to provide for the safety of the inhabiJackson's order into execution, except to collect tants on the frontiers during my absence, I have with care the evidence of such facts as go to sought an interview with the officer in command prove any countenance or assistance from the at this place. At Camp Montgomery I learned Spanish authority in St. Augustine to the hostile that you would probably reach this place in a Indians; and should you ascertain that they have few days, and indulged ihe hope of seeing you. afforded any, you will report the facts, properly An interview with you would have been to me supported by evidence, to ibis Department. You a source of much pleasure, and I regret ibat will also report the facts on which you ordered my arrangements will not permit me io await the issue of rations to the Indians, and the extent your arrival. of the issue I refer to the issue which is alluded The lodians commenced their murderous into in General Jackson's letter to you of the 7th cursions on the frontier settlements in January ultimo, as the Department has not yet received last, when two men were killed in this neighborany information on the subject. I have, &c. hood. No events occurred afterwards to excite
JOHN C. CALHOUN. apprehension until the 14th of March, when a Gen. E. P. GAINES.
house on the Federal Road, near Poplar Spring,
was attacked, and eight persons killed. This inNo. 8.
telligence reached me at Claiborne, from whence Extract of a letter from J. C. Calhoun, Secretary of a detachment of mounted riflemen was immediWar, to Major General Andrew Jackson, dated ately ordered to the place, for one month's ser: SEPTEMBER 8, 1818.
vice. A few days afterwards five men, while I enclose a copy of my orders of the 14th ulti- travelling the road, were fired at, and three killed; mo to General Gaines for your information. Ilars were taken. The people, for the most part,
from whom fifteen hundred or two thousand dol. concur in the view which you have taken in reJation to the importance of Florida to the effec communication by mail, or otherwise, with Geor
were flying for safety in every direction, and all tual peace and security of our Southern frontier; gia, wholly suspended. The lodians were koown and such, I believe, is the opinion of every member of the Administration. In fact, the grounds ihree posts were established by my order, at which
to be still in that quarter. In this state of things, assumed are very far from being feeble. $t. there are in the whole about one hundred men, Mark's will be retained until Spain shall be ready who have instructions to scour the woods from
to garrison it with a sufficient force; and Fort day to day. A fortnight since they found a Gadsden, and any other position in East or West camp; bat, on their approach, the enemy filed to Florida, within the Indian country, which may a contiguous swamp, from whence they fired, and be deemed eligible, will be retained so long as killed one man. The commanding officer inthere is any danger; which, it is hoped, will af- forms me that he thinks the number of Indians ford the desired security. We ought, it is true, now in the neighborhood considerable. I should never to resort to timid measures to avoid war; have mentioned that, in April, a house, within but it appears to me that a certain degree of cau- fifteen or lwenty miles of Claiborne, was attacktion (not from the fear of the Holy Alliance) ed; the husband killed, and wife and iwo daughought, at this time, to mark our policy. A war
ters wouoded. Thirty dollars, a quantity of ba. with Spain, were it to continue with her alone, con, and every article which could be conveyed and were there no great neutral Powers to avail away, taken and carried to Pensacola, where I themselves of the opportunity of embarrassing us, believe the murderers might still be found. would be nothing; but such a war would pot continue long without involving other parties, and another wounded, near the Poplar Spring:
I yesterday learned that one lodian was killed, and it certainly would, in a few years, be an En- This detail of events however was probably unglish war. In such a war I would not fear for necessary, as you will receive from Major Young the fate of our country; but, certainly, if it can every intelligence upon the subject. My princibe prudently and honorably avoided for the pres- pal object is to state that, in my efforts to protect ent, it ought to be. We want time-time to the people over whom I preside, the territorial grow, to perfect our fortifications, to enlarge our treasury being destitute of funds, has afforded me navy, to replenish our depois, and to pay our
no supplies whatsoever; nor has it been in the debts. I speak to you frankly, koowing your zeal power of the commanding officer here to render for our country, with whose glory yours is now ihe aid which he has uniformly manifested the identified. No one who has examined my politi- best disposition to afford. I am desirous that the cal course will, I am sure, think that these opin- troops should be considered as in the service of ions are influenced by limid councils.
the United States, and the accounts adjusted [NOTE. The order of the 14th of August, re- when their term of service expires. One comferred to in the above extract, bas been already pany rendezvoused at Poplar Spring, for three communicated to Congress.]
months' service, on the 10ih April, and a detachNo. 9.
ment of twenty-five at Sepulger lately, for the
same term of service. The expenditures incurFORT CRAWFORD, May 19, 1818. red have been considerable, and altogether beDear SIR: Proceeding to Georgia for the pur- yond my means of paying. You will readily pose of bringiog my family to this Territory, and perceive how unpleasant has been my situation