George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Daniel Brodhead, 24 April 1780

Fort Pitt April 24th 1780

Dear General

I am honored with your favors of the 4th of January & the 14th of March. that of the 4th January I did not receive untill the 18th instant.

Returns of the Troops under my Command have been duly forwarded to the orderly Office agreeable to Genl Orders. except one or two Months in the Winter when the Mountain was impassible.

As no reinforcement can be had from your Excellency, the intended expedition against Detroit must be laid aside untill a favourable turn of affairs takes place, unless you would recommend a junction of Colo. Clarks Troops with mine.

I have called upon the different Counties on this side the Mountain for 825 Rank & file to be drafted from the Militia and intend to visit the Shawnese provided the Men are furnished but the unhappy dispute of Jurisdiction will, I fear, prevent my getting them, and as many Renegades from the different Indian Nations are Collected at the Shawnese Towns I do not incline to make an attempt with an inconsiderable number of Men, because a defeat would be attended with fatal Consequences to the Settlements.

I am honored with a Line from the Honble Board of War informing me that an Officer of Colo. Proctors Regt with some stores & Cannon were in readiness to be sent up as soon as the Roads would permit & the means of transportation can be procured.

Mr Arthur Gordon is deserted from his Arrest and will probably avoid a new trial.

With a view of saving Land Carriage Expences where water carriage was practicable I suffered only a few of the boats to be used, and greater care could scarcely have been taken than what I took to prevent their being lost or spoiled; but it was out of my power to watch every person. I have however the pleasure to assure you that not more than seven are past Fort Henry, which as I have given orders to some of Colo. Clarks Officers will I trust be saved & sent back to this post.

I was much inclined last fall to do myself the Honor of waiting upon your Excellency with a view of proposing some things which at that time I expected would have promoted the Service in this district in the course of this Campaign but I do not recollect that I expressed any desire to visit my Family. I am much oblidged to your Excellency for the indulgence but as Colo. Gibson is absent on a visit to his Family at Carlisle and the Indians are remarkably hostile, I must remain untill I see whether it will be in my power to prosecute an Expedition against the hostile Indians or not, and untill I have the honor of hearing from you again.

The Lieutts of Monongalia County & Ohio, write that they are happy to hear of the intended Expedition against some of the Hostile Indians, and that they will exert themselves to furnish the Men required but they conceive that it will be difficult to effect it on acct of the Disputed Territory.

I take the liberty to inclose the Copy of a letter lately received from the Delaware Council at Coochacking No. 1. Likewise a Copy of the Revd Mr Zeisbergers Letter No. 2. & an extract from the Revd Mr Hackenwelders Letter No. 3. And will likewise inclose the Return of the Troops as nearly as possible to your wish but as Colo. Gibsons Regt my own & the Independent Corps were chiefly raised within the disputed territory, it will be impossible to determine in which State they were raised untill the line is run.

Fearing a scarcity of salt provisions for the out posts and the better to enable me to subsist a number of the Militia upon the proposed Expedition I have been oblidged to Reduce the ration of Meat one quarter, but I have allowed some Indian Meat in lieu thereof.

Since the first of March, the Indians have killed & taken forty three Men Women & Children, in the Counties of Yoghagania, Monongalia & Ohio, including those killed and taken upon the River, and they have destroyed a number of Horses & Cattle in Tyger valley.

The Honble Board of War mention the Expence of Expresses in such a manner as must prevent my employing any, but I will do my self the Honor to communicate to you, every material Occurrence by such private conveyance as may from time to time offer. I have the Honor to be with the most Sincere respect & esteem your Excellencies most Obedt Servt

Daniel Brodhead

DLC: Papers of George Washington.


Cooshocking March the 30th 1780

Wallawpachtchicchen Mr Gerrard & the Council of Cooshocking to Colol Brodhead and Colo. John Henry as Follows.

Brother, listen now to what I Shall Say unto. I can now Inform you as fact who it was that Murdered your Children) our Brotheren at Bacon Creek, Some time Agoe I had heard, that bad people were Gone past Towards you, but knew not the truth, now i assure you that it was Done By a party of Mingoes & Monseys Together who first took a Great number of Skins Scaffoled in the woods Belonging to Pakuland & others of our People, these Skins they first Destroy’d & took some of the Best along. I Can assure you that neither Capt. Pipe or any of his men had any hand in this murder.

Brothers, While i am Sitting in my house in peace i am Supprise’d to See three warriors at the head of a Large party Carrying your flesh & Blood by here. it makes me indeed Sorry to See it for I allways Remember that I and you are one, I and you have agree’d together that we Will acquaint one another of any such thing we hear, this I also am determined to do at all Times, These Three Warrior were first) the Mingoe Hawtatscheck, Neeshawsh a Mohican. Washenaws, a Monsey This three Carried Twenty Children & three Grown people Prisoners past here yesterday.

Brothers. I Desire you to Let me only Know when you are Ready to March that I may Send a few men to you in time; who Shall Go with you wherever you Go I also desire You to March as Quick as possible, let nothing hinder you from Doing this.

2 Branches of Wampum

Brother, You told me to Call my friends from Wabash here, I accordingly have Sent to them; & onley wait to See them Back again, & this Shall be the last time I Speak to any of the Bad people, I Lay this down & will have no more to Say unto any of those foolish Nations, Or Peple to Whom i have spoke So Often in Vaine.

Brother Again my messengers are Gone of to Gehnhenshican where Wingenund is to hurry those to Cooshocking as quick as Possible, this is all that I am waiting for yet.

Brother Now I Onley Wait for these I have Sent for and for nobody Else, for than when they are here all which are your friends I Shall let You know that you may not be at a Loss when you march for knowing Your friends from your Enemies.

Brother) What you have allways told Me Namely to Gather all our friends here at Cooshocking, that now will soone be done. We Shall Be together & then you may look on all those Whom you See back Towards the lake of this Place as your Enemies be they who they Will, & Even if you meet with Some of my nation you May Remember that they Belong no more to me.

Brother—I heare that Pemowagan half King head of he Wyondotts on this Side of the lake is Gone himself out to war against you.

Brother—I have Before Informed you how the Back Nations Were & that they were Good Inclined, I have not at Present herd any thing to the Contrary But Such as is Good.

Brother. This is all what i Can tell you I Know Of Nobody that is Striking you But those who live on Unamy [Sepa] And from that Towards the Lakes, all those that live Beyond us here to that River on this Side of the Lake are those who are Striking You.

6 Branches of Wampum—

Brother. This what I have told you now is Indeed the Truth, I had indeed Heare’d a Good while agoe that the head People intended to Strike you as Soone as the Ground would Be Bare I also told Geshahsee to Inform you But it Seems he never Told you of it.

Welawpacktschiechen Monsr Garrard Desires his Brother Colo. Brodhead and Gelelemen[d] Also to Look on the above as Real Truth as he knows it to Be So as it is Mentioned Herein. I Am Your Friend & Brother


No. 1


An Extract—

Coochocking March 30th 1780

We have heard nothing at all this whole winter what the Enemy are about: The Snow being so deep & the weather so continually cold has I suppose prevented this, but this day I am informed that three young fellows, two Delawares & one Wyandott have turned back from a body of warriors consisting of Twenty six men. They inform that five or six Companies of warriors are gone out, two parties of Wyandotts towards Beaver Creek & the others down this River—The Half King it appears is at the head of one of the parties & Neeshawsh (a Mohicon) heads a party of Muncies & Delawares.

It is also reported here this day that the Shawanese & others are gone to fight with the Army at the Big Bone Lick, likewise that the Wabash Indians are all gone to war.

We here intend to leave this place entirely in about two weeks & move nearer to Gnadenhutten. I am with Sincere regard your most Obedt Hble Servt

John Hackenwelder

No. 3


Tupaking April 2nd 1780

Dear Sir,

I have been very much disappointed in sending an answer to your several letters you wrote me. This place is quite out of the way, no Indians which are going to the Fort pass by here & though I wrote to Mr Edwards at Gnadenhutten several times to let me know of an opportunity but all in vain. In Feby some of our people was on the way with them, I had also wrote but after travelling a day & half they turned back because of the deep snow they met with.

In your letter of the 26th Novr last you desired me to procure you some intelligence from over the Lake, but was not in my power to do & much less now as I live such a distance from Coochocking where I might perhaps bring it about one way or other. Joshua intended to go but hard winter & deep snow coming on he dropped it—But hearing that a white man who was a prisoner among the Wyandotts, & who was well acquainted as I was told with all the particulars at Detroit went by Gnadenhutten for the Fort last winter I thought he could & would give you more sufficient intelligence than any Indian could procure because Indians have no knowledge about such matters; and I think it would be of very little service to send an Indian on such an errand who is a stranger to the place. In your 2nd letter of Feby 20th you proposed that our Indians might move nearer to the Fort; Sir, this indeed would not only be very hard & difficult, but also impossible for us to undertake now except our people would leave behind all what they have, for they are not like the rest of the Indians who can take their whole estate on their backs & go where they please & tho’ they might go round by water we would not be able to procure such a number of Canoes as it would require—Our people have been travelling & moving from one place to another till we at last came to this place where we hoped to remain in possession of our settlements & enjoy the fruit of our labour at least for a good many years. I dare not think about moving nor even propose it to our people for it would quite discourage them unless there was great necessity—therefore pray Sir, let us remain in possession of our settlements; Have we held it out so long? I hope with the help of God we shall get over until peace is restored again. Neither warriors nor other Indians come to our towns now because it is out of their way & we live very quiet.

Of the murder committed on Racoon Creek I heard nothing before I received your letter About eight days before we heard of a Company of Warriors having been tracked who came from towards the Wyandott towns, but did not learn what Indians they were, they must either be Mingoes, Muncies or of Wyandoughland’s Gang. I have not heard of any hostile thoughts from the Coochocking Indians yet, & if I should perceive anything of that kind I would give you intelligence by express.

But yesterday we heard that a party of Warriors amongst which was the well known Muncy Washnaws have attacked a boat in the River, killed three men & have taken twenty one men, women & Children prisoners & likewise the whole Boat. No doubt this action will encourage them to do more mischief—I am much oblidged for sending me the three packets of letters, & likewise for communicating the agreeable news contained in your letter. Those of our prople which lived yet nigh Coochocking are all moving up this Way & in a few days more they will be all gone from thence. I am with great esteem Dr Sir your most Hble Servt

David Zeisberger

P.S. After I wrote the above I had more full intelligence—the murder on Racoon Creek was committed by the Wyandotts & the others on the Big River by the Muncies, which is a true account.

No. 2

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