Letter from Thomas Hutchins to Joseph Martin
Volume 22, Pages 695-696
THOMAS HUTCHINGS TO COL. JOSEPH MARTIN.
Hawkins County, 11th July, 1788.
Since your departure from hence, the Indians have continued to commit hostilities on our frontiers. On Saturday the 21st of June, killed one man and wounded one other on Little River. On Tuesday the 24th, killed three persons on Muddy Creek. On Wednesday the 25th, killed three men at Evan’s Ferry, on French Broad River, and wounded one. On Wednesday the 25th, at Mr. William Reed’s, killed his son, wounded his daughter, and two men. On Monday the 29th, killed one man at Bunches Station; have likewise stole and carried off a number of horses. The war with the Cherokees have now become general, altho’ in part unjustly brought on. We are of necessity obliged to defend ourselves against the cruelties of our inveterate enemy. Colonel Sevier, contrary to the Council of Officers in June, fell on Kiewkah on Hiawassa, and, is said, killed about 20 Indians. A short time after with 40 men 28 crossed at Chota. 12 proceeded on the North Side Tennessee, and posted themselves near old Abram’s house. Sevier and party arrived in the town of Chillhowy, opposite to Abram’s, and hoisted a flag. Abram’s son ferried them over, and swam their horses—this done, they fell on the Indians in Abram’s house, killed the Tassell, Hanging Man, Old Abram, his son, Tassell’s brother and Hanging-Man’s brother, and
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took Abram’s wife and daughter—brought in 14 Scalps—altogether a scene of cruelty. I am hopeful the good citizens of this Country are not to partake of its evil consequences without the assistance of Government, as I can aver to you not a single person from this County abetted, or assisted in it, but reprobate the measures. You are sensible I have used every means and conciliating measure to unite the people of my County. I have fully accomplished it (give me leave to mention it). I have never seen Citizens more determined upon strict obdience to Government than those I have the honor to command. Colonel Sevier discovers every mark of contempt to the laws of this State; and even those that are in allegiance he holds them in derision. His conduct, if not noticed, I fear, will leave an evil tendency, in so much that it may involve us in a war with the Creeks. He is now gone out with about 40 Men. His destination I know not, but fear its effects. We are greatly distressed for arms and ammunition. If you do not furnish us very speedily, I know not the event. You are sensible, Sir, the innocent with the guilty are to suffer indiscriminately, therefore, I hope the common feelings of humanity will excite you with every other virtue to exert yourself to extricate us from the impending dangers that appear. Sevier has just returned from Highwassa—a second tour. He went down the River in two canoes—40 of them; but found the towns evacuated, from thence in retreating. Twelve of his party is returned, I learn to Little River. I am informed they have made upwards of 300 improvements on Highwassa. Judge their intentions.
I am Sir, with real regard,
Your humble servant,
Letter from Thomas Hutchings, Esq., to Colonel Joseph Martin, dated
Hawkins County, 11 July, 1788.
CHAS. THOMSON, Secy.