George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Stanwix, 18 July 1757

From John Stanwix

Camp near Carlisle [Pa.] July 18th 1757

Dear Sir

a Cherokee Indian is just arrived here & has put the ten indians waiting at this place for Prestents from this Collony into very ill humour, by telling them that their Brothers have been put into Prison at Winchester, so that is with the Greatest difficulty I could prevale with them to stay ’till this afternoon to take with them to our Fort Loudoun £400 worth, of presents to be there distributed after they joyn, but these Cherokees have insisted upon their interpreter Mr Smith going off directly to you to know the cause and have given them the Strongest assurance (wch I am sure I could do with great safety) that you will do them the greatest justice, and if any mistake has happen’d that you will make them the most ample satisfaction as Mr Smith their interpreter & the bear[e]r of this is press’d much by the Indians to set of so it prevents my saying any more than that I am with great truth Sir Your most obedt humble Servt1

John Stanwix


1See GW to Stanwix, 15 July 1757, for an account of Edmond Atkin’s imprisonment of ten Cherokee warriors. Atkin wished “to enquire of Richard Smith whether he knew of any of those Indians. He was at that Time out with another Party of Cherokees at that Time [sic] lately called the Swallows. When I stopped the 10 Indians I knew not where to find him, but two Days after, hearing he was at Carlisle with Col. Stanwix, I dispatched a Letter to him, ordering him to acquaint Outossity of Estatoe, the Chief of that Party and the Swallows, Nejohew [sic], of what had happened, and to desire them to return here immediately with him. Unluckily that Letter missed them by an Hour or two. But two Cherokees who had gone privately from hence, by telling them a very imperfect Story made them very angry. Immediately on their coming into this Town [Winchester] Yesterday, all the ten Indians were taken out of Confinement and put into their own Hands. They answered for the Whole as being Freinds and a Present being recommended by them and accepted by those Indians to make them amends for their Confinement and wipe away their Sorrow all are well satisfied” (Atkin to the Commander of Fort Prince George, 22 July 1757, in McDowell, S.C. Indian Affairs, 1754–1765 description begins William L. McDowell, Jr., ed. Documents relating to Indian Affairs. 2 vols. Columbia, S.C., 1958-70. In Colonial Records of South Carolina, 2d ser., vols. 2–3. description ends , 406–8). For a slightly different version of this denouement, see GW to Stanwix, 30 July 1757.

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