George Washington Papers

To George Washington from John Blair, 9 April 1758

From John Blair

Williamsburg April the 9th 1758


Friday afternoon I received yours of the Second Instant, with a Letter from Governor Denny and the Speech of the Indian King, as also Captain Bullets Letters, and the Proceedings of Officers Held at Fort Loudoun, which I laid before the Council next Morning, who concur in the opinion of the Officers above for the Reason by them given, and for the certain Intelligence that has Lately been Received of Maney Murders lately been Committed upon our Frontiers by those Western Indians.1 As to the Supply’s you Write for, I have sent up above Seven-Hundred Pounds in Indian Goods that Mr Rutherford Purchas’d here by my Direction and are to be Landed at Falmouth. I had sent Mr Gist Three Hundred Pounds to Purchase Necessaries for the Indians by Mr Cromwell besides paying what was then Due, about 500. Pounds but finding that wou’d not be Sufficient for such Numbers as I hear are Coming, I have sent him by Mr Rutherford 500 Pounds more to Purchase Arms, and such Things as are not to be got here, and if any more is wanting you will send me Word, for I wou’d not Starve the Cause, or have the Indians Disobliged if Possible to avoid it.2 I am unlookily Saiz’d with an Ague and Fever, but hope you are in good Health. I have not to add but that I am Sir Your most humble Servt

John Blair. P.

P.S. As the Assembly intend to garrison the Forts with Drafts from the Militia I hope you will keep your Out Parties in a readiness to rendesvous on Short Notice.3


1See William Denny to GW, 25 Mar. 1758, as well as GW’s letter to Blair of 2 April and the notes in both these documents.

2For Thomas Bullitt’s estimate as senior officer at Fort Loudoun of the number of Indians who had arrived and were yet to come, see Denny to GW, 25 Mar. 1758, n.5. For possible identification of Mr. Cromwell, see Christopher Gist to GW, 3 Feb. 1758. For reference to the Indian raids, see GW to John Blair, 9 April 1758, n.4.

3The act for creating a second Virginia Regiment passed by the assembly on 12 April 1758 (see GW to John Blair, 9 April 1758, n.3) provided for “men to be draughted out of the militia . . . to garison the forts . . . during the absence of the soldiers . . . until the twentieth day of December next” at the latest (7 Hening description begins William Waller Hening, ed. The Statutes at Large; Being a Collection of All the Laws of Virginia, from the First Session of the Legislature, in the Year 1619. 13 vols. 1819–23. Reprint. Charlottesville, Va., 1969. description ends 163–69).

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