Document 5 Transcript
Harry Toulmin, Mississippi Territorial Judge, Letter to Brigadier General Ferdinand L. Claiborne, or officer commanding the Volunteers on the road from Baton Rouge, 23 July 1813. Fort Stoddert 23rd July 1813 Dear Sir Since I wrote to you on Monday last the postrider who was supposed to be killed has re- turned. He was robbed of his mail by a party of Creeks going to Pensacola. He was afterwards fired upon & had his hat shot off and his horse killed under him –but escaped unhurt. The wife of James Cornels who was supposed to be killed as also Mr. Marlow who lives with him, have been taken to Pensacola. The Governor endeavored to procure the mail for the purpose of sending it to Mobile but they were not disposed to give it up. They got a person to open & read the letters;--but I am yet in hopes that it will be substan- tially recovered. The Governor assured them that the letter from the British Ge- neral in Canada was merely a letter of recommendation and refused to supply them with any ammunition. He however ap- pointed another meeting,—and the Creeks in the mean time were making every exer- tion to procure power & lead by private purchase. They have also great recourse to the old arms, bows & arrows, in the fabri- cation of which they discover much skill, and render them more dangerous than bullitts. They were still in Pensacola on Wednesday. Mr. Tate returned to in- form us of what he had learnt. Mr. Peirce staid behind to obtain further in- formation. Mr. Tate learns from persons whom he has seen that were car- ried down with them,--that their language breathes vengeance on the white people, & that they have dropped some hints of a de- sign to attack the Tensaw settlements, (14 miles from this) on their return. Mr. Manac also informs me that he believes their great object to be an attack on the white people. They aim indeed to put to death eight of their own Chiefs. This will effect a complete revolution in the government, and the patriots will obtain an uncontrolable sway. As to the half breeds, the revolutionists have no original quarrel with them. If they fall into the new order of things; it will be well. They will remain un- molested:--but if they take part with white men; they will meet with the fate of white men. The half breeds, however, do not think fit to trust themselves with them or to embark in their measures. They have fled and have left behind them their crops & other property. I visited them yesterday. They are in confusion and distress. Not less so are my white neighbours on Tensaw. They are erecting forts, --seeking safety in swamps, or defence at this place. N-----(torn) ever renders our situation better but the two rivers. On the other side of the rivers,-- nine-tenths of the houses are abandoned. The expedition under Col. Callier is to start tomorrow. I thought it justifiable & sent my son; -- but I tremble for the issue. With numbers only equal to the indians & skill far inferior, we cannot calculate on anything in their favour but the effect of surprise. I regret that two Indians have been killed in the forks. They had stolen some goods, & attempting to escape, -- were shot. I pray you to hasten your approach. Should our militia be defeated; our settlement will probably fall a sacrifice. I am dear sir, very respectfully your most obed't serv't (signed) Harry Toulmin Saturday Morning P.S Since the within was written, Mr. Peirce has returned from Pensacola. The Governor has issued an order for supplying the indians with powder: they had had a war dance, avowed their intention to commit hostilities on us,-- and also to begin with the adjacent settlements. The people have been fleeing all night.
Back to Lesson 1.