Source:Redd, 1903 (Composite Version)

Source Redd, 1903 (Composite Version)
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Redd, 1903 (Composite Version).

This is a composited version of the article by John Redd, published over several issues of the Publications of the Southern History Association, in 1903. The bibliographic citation for this work is given at Source:Redd, 1903. That citation includes a link, here repeated, to the original work as presented on Google Books. This composited version includes minor modifications to the original, primarily with respect to paragraphing, punctuation, and the display of notes as end notes, rather than in the "in-line" format used in the original. Some minor format changes, including the designations of "Part 1, Part 2, etc", have also been included.



[Editors Forward]

The sketch and other material which are printed herewith came to the Association from the collection of Dr. Stephen B. Weeks, who copied them in 1893 from the Draper Manuscripts in the Wisconsin State Historical Society for use in preparing his monograph on General Joseph Martin and the War of the Revolution in the West, printed in the Report of the American Historical Association for 1893 (PP- 4O3-477)- This sketch was prepared by Major John Redd in 1849 for and at the request of Lyman C. Draper who spent much of his life collecting materials relating to the territory which has since become known as Appalachian America. At the death of Dr. Draper in 1891 his collections passed into possession of the Wisconsin State Historical Society.

It is believed that the whole of Redd's sketch of Martin is now printed for the first time. The concluding pages have been printed already in the pages of the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography for April, 1899 (VI, No. 4). That number contains an article entitled: "Reminiscences of Western Virginia, 1770-1790, by John Redd, Henry County, Va." A preliminary editorial note runs as follows: "The manuscript which we begin to print in this number of the Magazine has apparently been for a considerable period in the collection of the Virginia, Historical Society. It consists of forty foolscap pages, stitched together, and is evidently a series of answers to questions which had been addressed to the writer. There is no title nor signature, but it was judged from internal evidence that the paper was written by John Redd, of Henry county. This is confirmed by a statement of Lyman C. Draper, in the new edition of Withers's Border Warfare, p. 59. He quotes some statements made in the beginning of this manuscript and states that the information was given him in 1849, by Major John Redd, of Henry county, Va. At that time Major Redd must have been upwards of eighty years of age. The answers run through this and the next number of the magazine. "It is probable that our manuscript is the original of the information given Mr. Draper. At any rate it is evident that the questions, to which answers are given, were propounded by one well informed in regard to the history of the West."]

In the October, 1899, issue of the magazine there is another editorial preliminary note as follows: "As stated in the introduction to these reminiscences, this paper by Major Redd, is in two parts, sheets roughly stitched together. The second part which is begun in this number, consists of his recollections of the prominent men of the Western frontier of Virginia and North Carolina. A number of pages are missing, the remaining account beginning with what is evidently a sketch of the life of General Joseph Martin. It is probable that the missing pages will be recovered, and if so, will be published in a future Magazine." Immediately after the above preliminary note, with one line blank, the printing of MSS goes on thus: "but all to no purpose. Burns and Barker were carried of and…”

This beginning is found in the present account farther on, but the MS. here printed differs in spelling, in condensation, and change of non-essential words from that used in the Virginia Magazine, but from that point to the end of this MS. they are practically the same. The Magazine continues through January, 1900, with Redd MSS., dealing with sketches of other characters.—EDITORS.]


On this 14th day of October, 1833, personally appeared in open Court before the justices of the County Court of Henry now sitting John Redd, a resident of said county of Henry, aged seventy-eight years, who being first duly sworn according to law, doth on his oath make the following declaration in order to obtain the benefits of the Act of Congress passed 7th June, 1832. That he was born in the County of Orange in the State of Virginia in the month of October,1755, as appears from the record of his age now in his possession, and removed to the County of Henry (then Pitsylvania County) in the month of March, 1774. That he entered the services of the United States under the following named officers and served as herein stated. That in the month of July, 1776, he marched with a company of Militia commanded by Capt. Joseph Martin, from the County of Henry (then Pitsylvania) as an orderly sergeant to the Long Island of Holston, where they were joined by various other companies, the whole under the command of Col. Wm. Christian, that in the month of October following the army (after having erected a fort, storehouses, &c., on Holston) marched against the Cherokee Indians, and after destroying seven of their towns & much of their stock and provisions returned to the fort on Holston in the month of November following. This declarant continued in the service as orderly sergeant in this expedition five months. That about the month of December following, the army was disbanded with the exception of four or five hundred men who were enlisted to remain upon the frontiers until peace should be concluded with the Indians. This declarant again enlisted and received from Col. Anthony Bledsoe, then in command, the appointment of Sergeant Major in which office he served for seven months, and was discharged with the army after the conclusion of peace with the Indians in the latter part of the month of July, 1777. He then returned to the County of Henry and was commissioned an Ensign in a company of Militia commanded by Capt. Brice Martin. That in the summer of 1780, he was in the service one month as an Ensign having been called into the service with Capt. Martin's Company and marched against the Tories who had assembled at a place called a Hollow near the head of Dan & Arrarat Rivers. That early in the year 1781 this declarant, then a Lieutenant in Capt. Brice Martin's Company, marched with his company and others under the command of Col. James Lyon to join Genl. Green on Dan River, but before they reached Green's army, Lyon himself deserted and most of the troops returned to their homes, and the remnant of the troops amongst whom was this declarant after being in the service for one month were discharged by Genl. Greene in consequence of the large disproportion of officers.


DEAR SIR: Agreeable to your request I now Sit down to give you a detail of the life of Genl. Jos. Martin & others of Such incidents in their lives as have come under my own observation and facts that I have obtained from reliable Sources. In performing this duty I shall have to mention my own Services in connection with the distinguished men of whom you seek information. I do this not for the purpose of giving publicity to the part which I took in the frontier Settlement, but that you may understand fully the Services of Martin & others. My first acquaintance with Genl. Martin was when he married his first wife, Miss Sarah Lucas, of Orange County, Va., in the neighborhood where I lived, at which time I was about 10 years of age; he remained in the neighborhood many years. In the year 1773 he purchased land in the County of Pittsylvania, now Henry, on Smith's river, and in the following winter moved his family out. In Mar., 1774, he returned to Orange and gave me as an overseer at his new home in the same year the Shoanise Indians declared war against the whites, they made several excursions in the waters of new river, and did a great deal of damage to persons and property. The Legislature of Va. passed a law to raise an army immediately to be put under the Command of Col. Andrew Lewis, for the purpose of meeting the Indians. Genl. Martin was appointed first Lieut. in the Company of Capt. Abram Penn. Capt. Penn's company was ordered to Culbertsons bottom on new river for the purpose of building a fort to protect the Whites, this order of Capt. Penn's was immediately carried into affect. Genl. Martin remained in this fort in the capacity of first Lieutenant until the battle between Col. Lewis and the S. Indians at the point near the mouth of the Kanawha river, after the battle the Indians sued for peace. Capt. Penn's company was discharged and Genl. Martin returned home about the first of Dec. and arriving home Genl. Martin gave notice that he wished to raise a company to go out and settle Powells Valley, the company was soon raised, and on the 28th of December we set out, the company was composed of 16 or 18 men with all necessary implements to Settle.

Early in January, 1775, we arrived in the Valley and halted in a large old Indian field where a few years before Genl. Martin attempted to make a Settlement. Of Genl. Martin's first trip to Powells Valley I know nothing excepts such facts as I obtained from the Genl. and his brother Brice. [1X] In his first trip to Powells Valley he was accompanied by only 5 or 6 men, the day after he arrived in the Valley a large Company of Indians who were on a hunting expedition came to his Camp, the Indians appeared to be very friendly and delighted at seeing their white brethren, most of them had very inferior Guns and Seemed to be pleased with the appearance of the Guns of Martin's men, the Indians seemed to be very talkative, but unfortunately none of the whites could speak the Indian language nor the Indians the language of the Whites. Genl. Martin perceiving that the Indians took a great fancy to his guns, gave his men orders not to let the Indians take any of them out of their hands—the Indians soon gave Signs to Martin and his men that they wished to exchange their guns with the whites their offers in every instance were Sternly rejected. Martin Set his gun down and the moment he turned his Eye from it a very large Indian picked it up and put his gun in the place of it and walked off a few yards to his companions, as soon as Martin discovered that his gun was gone, he picked up the old one lying in the place of his and walked to where the Indians were. Seeing the Indian with it in his hand, he threw the old gun at the feet of the Indian and laid hold of his own the Indian refused to give it up a scuffle ensued, Martin threw the Indian down wrenched the gun from his reluctant grasp, the Indians who were standing by and witnessed the Scuffle between their companion and Martin raised a great Laugh and yelled at the Scuffle, the Indian from whom the gun had been taken was very much annoyed and soon went off with his companions, on leaving the Indian Said a great deal in a very excited tone. Martin not understanding his Language took all he said to be threats of revenge after the affair of the gun. Martin and his men held a counsel and concluded that they had better return home for they knew not to what extent the Indians might carry their revenge accordingly the next morning they set out for home. We immediately set to work and built several strong cabins and Stockaded them which made it a good fort for defence. We then fenced in with brush and rails a large portion of the old field in which we made a large crop of corn. The Valley abounded in almost every Species of game, and the time we had to spare from cultivating our corn was employed in killing game, we soon had a large supply of meat. (To be Continued.)

Part II

About the first of April Col. Richard Henderson, with something like forty men who were on their way to Kentucky to make the first permanent settlement; they stopped at the fort 6 or 8 days to supply themselves with meat, as for bread we had none for ourselves:—as soon as they were supplied themselves, they set out on their journey.[2X] During the year we were not uninterrupted by the Indians, during the fall Wm.  Priest with 8 or 10 men came out and built a fort a few miles above Martins. About the same time Wm. Mumps with a small party of men came out and built a fort at the Sinking Springs, 20 miles from Martins where Lee court house now is; at the forts the Settlers cut down and killed the timber on a good deal of Land, and in the Spring they were surrounded by fences made of brush and rails and planted in corn: during the past fall several small parties passed on their way to Kentucky—many of whom were murdered by the Indians, this produced a very great excitement with the Settlers in the Valley. In May 1776, Genl. Martin returned home, promising to return in four weeks,—the four weeks expired and we had heard nothing from Genl. Martin: the Settlers at Priest and Mumps fort had all left and some of our own men. Days rolled on and we could hear nothing from Martin nor the Settlement we became alarmed at our situation, we knew that something of great moment had taken place or Martin would either returned or send a messenger out to let us know why he did not come at the appointed time. As our number had decreased to about 10 and we could hear nothing from Martin, we held a counsel and determined to remain 3 days longer and if we could hear nothing from the Settlement in that time to start for home.  The day we held our Council Wm. Parks one of our number insisted upon our going some 8 miles below the fort and put up a few poles in the shape of a house, kill some trees, dig some holes in the ground and plant his corn so as to Secure a corn sight and return the third morning time enough to start with us if we Should [leave] for the Settlement. We very reluctantly gave our consent on the same evening Parks, his nephew Thomas, and his negro man set out to secure his corn right the 3 morning after Parks left the day he promised to return to our great surprise young Parks came and informed us that his uncle had left the evening before to kill some meat, shortly after his leaving he heard him shoot and had heard nothing from him since. I and 2 others set out with young Parks and on arriving at his cabin he showed us the way his uncle went. We found his tracks and followed it with great care, after going about one mile we came to where some Indians had been Lying among some lime stone rocks on the Kentucky trace about fifty yards from where the Indians had been we saw old Parks lying dead on his face on examining him we found he was shot through the heart. From his tracks he must have gone some thirty yards from where he was shot. He was scalped and a war club left sunk in his brain we skined some tough bark with it, lashed the body of old Parkes to a poll and two of us with and end of the pole on our Shoulders carried him to his cabin and buried him. 

The same evening returned to the fort, and among these we found an express sent out by Genl. Martin informing us that the Indians had declared war and were doing a great deal of mischief, the morning after the arrival of the express we broke up and came to Blackymore fort on clinch river at this fort we found the greater part of the men who had left Mumps and Priest forts, we soon raised a company of some 20 men returned and thin'd our corn; after this I came home on arriving at home I found that Martin had been appointed Captain, and was raising his men, the company was soon raised, officers appointed and I received the appointment of orderly. Sgt. The company was ordered to start immediately to Eaton's fort near the long Island of Holston and formed a Junction with Colo. W. Christian who had command of an army of 2,000 men a few days before we arrived at the fort Colo. Christian ascertained through his spies that a large body of Indians had crossed the river and was coming towards the fort. All of the men that could be spared were immediately put under the command of Colo. Wm. Cocke and ordered out to meet the Indians. About one and one-half miles from the river Colo. Cocke with 400 men met the enemy, who greatly out numbering the whites, were sure of an easy victory. There first onset was accompanied with hooping and yelling. Colo. Cocke not being acquainted with the Indian mode fighting thought that their yelling was a Signal of victory, believing the day to be lost he became completely panic strick and put out at the top of his speed for the fort. On arriving there he reported that his men were completely cut in pieces. About one hour after the gallant Colo, arrived at the fort news reached him that his men had driven back into the forest, without the loss of a Single man and the Indians left fourteen of their dead lying on the field. [3]

A few days after Capt. Martin's company arrived at the fort: Christian's command had increased to about one thousand men. He ordered the army to march down to the Holston river and build a fort on the bank opposite to the long Island, on going down we passed by the late battle ground of the whites and Indians, the Indians that had been killed were all lying as they fell—with the exceptions of some who had their legs and arms torn by the wolves. On arriving at the Holston we immediately set to work building a fort a few days after we commenced the fort Intelligence was received that the Indians had murdered several persons, some 5 or 6 miles below on the river; as soon as this news reached us Capt. Martin with 30 of his men volunteered to go in pursuit of the Indians, and soon arrived at the place where the murder had been committed; from the one that made his escape we learned that one of the men that was murdered had some time before made a small Settlement but he became alarmed on account of the Indians and fled to Batons fort and remained there until Col. Christian commenced building his fort on the Holston. Thinking he could now return with Safety, he with his two Sons, Brother and another man came back and these four were murdered by the Indians. Capt. Martin found three of their bodies lying in front of the cabin and their scalps taken off, the fourth we tracked some fifty yards to where he jumped into the river, and in a short time found his body lodged on some driftwood a short distance below. Capt. Martin soon became satisfied from the tracks of the Indians that there must have been a large party of them. I was sent back by Capt. Martin to inform Colonel Christian of all the circumstances we had gathered of the murder. As soon as Colo. Christian received the intelligence sent by Martin, he ordered 30 more men to be raised and with provisions enough to last several days, the same evening set out and joined Martin's command. The next morning at sunrise Capt. Martin set out and the same day followed the Indians 30 miles, and came to where they camped the night before; the second day they marched 30 miles and found that the Indians were still one day ahead of them; the third day we followed them to the Tennessee river, and there we were about 20 miles from the Indian Towns. Capt. Martin finding that we could not gain on them returned to Christians fort. Shortly after we returned, the fort was completed and supplied with provisions and men. Shortly after Colo. C. completed his fort he set out with something like 2.000 men to attack the Indians in their own Towns. In this expedition Capt. Martin accompanied him. Col. C. Set out about the last of Oct. 76, he heard that the Indians had about 3,000 men encamped on hunting Creek, 15 miles beyond french broad river.  

The movement of the army was very slow in consequence of all their supplies being carried on horses, for we did not have a Single wagon. Before we arrived at the french broad, we learned that we were to be attacked while we crossed the river. When we arrived at the river a halt was ordered and a ridge overlooking the ford of the river, at the ford was a small Island within some fifty yards of this side, the water was deep and very rapid, on the other side of the Island the river was much wider though shallow and with a smooth bottom. Between the Island and the other bank we expected an attack from the Indians, the ridge we halted on ran some distance parallel with the river, on this ridge a great many piles of wood were placed at the ordinary distance, these piles of wood were set on fire at night, and 600 men were ordered to march down and cross the river some five miles below and at a certain minute the next day to come up on the opposite side of the river so they should be in the rear of the Indians on their attack on the balance of the army. Early the next morning 600 men were ordered to cross to the opposite of the river, the remainder of the men, 800, were left to protect the baggage, &c. Captain Martin's company was in front, two of his men were quite unwell, these Martin advised not to cross, but they insisted on going over and sharing with their comrades in the expected fight. Martin at last yielded to their wishes, but determined they should not endanger their lives by wading the river. As soon as they arrived at the river, Martin pulled off all his clothes except his shirt and put them in his breeches, put his breeches across his shoulders, took one of the sick men on his back and his gun in one hand and marched gallantly at the head of his Colum to the Island and then he deposited his load and returned for the other sick man. After they had all got over in the Island and they examined their guns they were ordered to march over on the other side of the river in double Colums, and when the bank was touched by the head of the Colum they were to march to the right and left and not to halt even if they should be fired upon until the Colum had crossed. This order was obeyed to the very letter. Capt. Martins Company was in front. Just as the army crossed and was drawn out in Single Colum up and down the river, the 600 men that crossed five miles below were seen coming some 300 yards off Stretched out in Single Column Similar to the other. At this State of Affairs news was received that the Indians had broken up their camp but could not tell which way they had gone. Colo. Christian not knowing at what moment he might meet with an attack from his treacherous foe, held his men in a position to meet them at any moment. The balance of the army with the baggage was ordered across the river and joined the 1,200 men. Soon as the baggage train crossed the river the army was expecting every moment to see the Indians make a rush from their place of concealment. A great noise was heard in the direction of a large Canebrake. We were satisfied that it was the noise of a large body of Indians making a charge upon us—the officers were calling out in every direction, men be at your post. The noise was growing more distinct but was still very audible. Again it grew louder and soon appeared to be getting off. The army was kept in a State of suspence for some time, at last Colo. Christian sent some men in that direction to see what the Indians were doing. The messengers returned and reported that the noise proceeded from a large herd of Bufellow which had been badly frightened and had taken refuge in a canebrake some half mile off or more, some spies came in and reported that the Indians instead of coming to meet us had gone in the direction of their towns. Colo. C. believing that there was not much danger of an immediate attack from the Indians, and his men were very much fatigued gave orders that the army would proceed no father that day. The Captains were ordered to dismiss their companies and were ordered to commence cooking. In a very short time the tents were pitched and almost every man was preparing something to eat. (To be continued.)

Part III

In the Company of Capt. Martin there was a man by the name of Andrew King. This man had not more than half sense and was a notorious coward he was the laughing stock of the whole company he was one of the guard that evening around the horses while they were feeding on cane. King had manifested much fear during our march and particularly while crossing the river, that two of his companions Burns and Borker determined to have a little sport with him that evening. Burns & Borker went where King was minding his horses and informed him that one of his horses had gotten away, and if he did not find it he would be severely punished, they both went with King after the horse and every now and then they pretended to see the tracks of a horse— until they had gotten about one mile and a half from the camp one of Kings companions fired off his gun the other fired the one who fired his gun hallowed out “Indians! Indians! Indians!” the one who first fired in a moment fired off his gun and the first who fired off gun fell whereupon King turned and ran to the camp when he reached the camp he was almost out of his wits. He jumped up and hollowed out “Indians, Indians”. He continued running from tent to tent saying the woods are full of Indians. I have seen two men fall the drums were beet, and the army soon called out. Col. Christian had King brought before him and catekised him in regard what he had seen. But all the Col. could get out of him was the woods are full of Indians and he had seen two men fall, but could not tell who they were. Col. Christian ordered every Capt. to call his roll & see who was missing. By the time this order was issued Burns and Borker returned and informed Capt. Martin what they had done. Capt. Martin immediately sent a message to Col. Christian informing him that it was useless to put himself to any further troubles for he would be up in a few moments and explain to him all the circumstances connected with King seeing the Indians.

Capt. Martin soon arrived at Col. C. tent accompanied by Burns and Baker and informed Col. C. what these men had done and said that he never had better souldiers that they had never disobeyed a single known order of his, and as far as their courage had been tested they were brave and these men had not been in the army long and knew not that they were violating any military law and as for King he was the bigest coward he had ever seen.

Col. C. said that Burns and Borker must be punished, Capt. Martin again remonstrated. Said he hoped that the fault would be looked over, and as they were present they could make their own statement, they said that King was such a coward they intended to scare him to death or make a souldier of him, when King started to run they ran after him with a view of overtaking him they followed him within sight of the camp but he was too fast for them but if they had overtaken him there would have been no disturbance. Col. C. ordered them to be put under guard and said they should be punished. Martin again remonstrated [4] but all to no purpose, they were put under guard by this time the circumstances of their case was noised throughout the army and the feelings of almost the entire army was enlisted in their behalf. As soon as

Burns and Borker were put under guard Capt. Martin returned to his tent and remained there a few moments took his sword in his hand and walked where they were, ordered them to follow him and said to the guard that he would stand between them and all danger and he carried his souldiers back to his tent, and that was the last of the affair, no other notice was taken of Burns and Borker by Col. Christian. Capt. Martin forcibly taking his men from the gard produced a coolness between him and Christian which lasted as long as Martin remained with Christian. I do not recollect of seeing them speak or even nod as long as they were together, this was truly to be regretted for they were very intimate.

The next morning the army Set out for the Indian towns on the oposite side of the tennessee river, when we arrived there the Indians had all left their towns, and carried with them all their cattle and horses. Col. Christian heard that seven of the eleven towns had declared in favor of war. These seven towns were burnt to the ground, the other four which were opposed to a declaration of war were left un-burnt after we had remained there 5 or 6 days a noted Indian chief, Little Carpenter, came in with a white flag and informed Col. Christian that the Indians were tired of war and wanted peace. This Indian was a man of fine intellect, he had been to England and could speak English with as much fluency as any of us, he informed Christian that the Indians had gone a long ways off, and the nearest Indians to him was at Henassee river about 50 miles off—Col. C. not knowing but the Indian was trying to play some trick on him informed the Chief that as an evidence of his sincerity, that he must let two traders accompany him back to his nation and in five or 6 days must return and bring the traders and some more of his chiefs. Little Carpenter returned at the appointed time accompanied by the two traders and 2 chiefs. Col. C. and the 3 chiefs agreeing that these 3 chiefs were to return accompanied by several traders to their nation and bring a sufficient number of their head men to represent their nation.

The Indians departed promising to return in a given day, at that day they came in, 5 Indian chiefs Col. C. after being assured that the tribe was fully represented agreed that the Indians were to return accompanied by some traders two of the Indians were to remain as hostages until peace was concluded. Col. C. was to go back with the army to Long Island on the Holston the Indians had the privalage to return to their towns when a sufficient number arrived there, they were to dispatched one of the traders to Col. C. who was to send a guard to meet them at the french broad river, and escort them to long Island where they were to be fed by Col. C. until a final ratification of peace.

In a few days after this agreement with the Indians, Col. C. gave orders for the army to march back to the Holston. Capt. Martin sent his Bro. Brice to Col. C. to inform him that he had 6 men on the sick list and one died the day before, it was impossible for him with the number of horses assigned him to carry his sick with their baggage he wished he would furnish him with an additional number of horses, or have their baggage carried by some other conveyance. Col. C. sent him word back that he had no more horses to spare, and if he did not carry their baggage, he should pay for everything that was left, Capt. Martin determined that his sick should be provided for, at the risk of his own purse, he had eleven of their ovens carried and thrown in the river put his sick men on horses and set out with the rest of the army.

When they arrived at the Holston Col. C. recognized [reorganized] the army and 600 men were retained at long Island. Capt. Martin was ordered to the Rye Cove fort about 50 miles off on the north fork of Clinch; the balance of the army was discharged. Capt. Martin set out immediately for the fort,—at this place a man by the name of Isac Crisman had built a fort some time before, and while we were gone to the Indian towns, Crisman and 2 of his family were murdered by the Indians. I did not accompany Capt. M. on this expedition for I was appointed Sgt. Major by Col. C. and remained at long Island while Capt. M. was on his way to the Rye Cove, he had to pass through a very dangerous gap called little Mockison gap, at this place the trail went through a very narrow, deep gorge in the mountains, At this place the Indians had killed a great many whites. As Capt. Martin passed through the gap he had his men in very fine order and drawn out in Single file. Just as the head of the column emerged from this narrow place the whole company was fired upon by the Indians from the top of the ridge. They were in a column as long as Capt. Martin's. As soon as the Indians fired they ran off. They did not kill any of Martin's men but wounded one by the name of Bunch; he had five balls shot through the flesh. Capt. Martin finding that the Indians had all fled marched on his way to the Rye Cove unmolested.

Capt. M. remained here until the first of May at which time his company was ordered back to long Island, and he remained here until July '77, when the treaty was finally concluded; as soon as peace was concluded the army was disbanded. (5) After the treaty of '77-, Capt. Martin received the appointment of Indian Agent for the Cherokee nation. Soon after receiving the appointment he proceeded to build a large Stone house on the Island for the purpose of depositing such goods as the government might send out for the Indians. He soon came in and gave me a draft he received from the government on a house in Charleston South Carolina for a large quantity of Indian goods. I went to Charleston, purchased the goods and handed them over to Capt. Martin. He remained at long Island as Indian Agent until the close of the revolution at which time his Agency expired.(6)

About two years before his Agency expired his first wife died. Capt. Martin then came home to live, shortly after his return home he went to Georgia (7) and bought land on Tugalo River, came home and married the second time to Miss Susan Graves. A few months after his second marriage he went to the west to close all of his unsettled business, he remained in the west several months and again came home on Capt. Martin's arrival at home his wife informed him that her Brother Jno. Graves had during his absence been very unkind to her and treated her very badly, the next morning Capt. Martin sent over for Graves. When Graves arrived several of his neighbors had called in to see Capt. Martin, he informed Graves that he had treated his wife very little like a Sister during his absence, that for your conduct you deserve a good whipping but he should look over the offense for this time but if he ever did it again he would treat him as he deserved. At this Graves left in a violent rage, during the evening Capt. Martin received a note from Graves informing him that he had been grossly insulted, and that no apology he could make would be sufficient to atone for the insult, that if Martin was a man of courage he must meet him the next morning at an old field about one mile off, and decide it at the mouths of their pistols. Capt. Martin after reading the note put it in his pocket and said nothing to Mrs. Martin, or any other person about it. The next morning about 10 o'clock Capt. Martin went to the field of Battle. When he arrived at the field John Graves and his 3 seconds were there awaiting his arrival, Graves' Father was about 50 yards off Setting on his horse waiting patiently to see the duel come off. As soon as Martin arrived he walked up to John Graves pulled the challenge out of his pocket, and asked if he wrote it. Graves answered he did, Martin knocked him down with his fist gave him two or three kicks — the seconds and the old man ran off and as soon as John could get up he put out at the top of his Speed leaving Martin master of the field.

Shortly after this Capt. Martin went again to Georgia and sold all of his land there and came home. In the year 89-90 & 91 he was elected to the Legislature of Va. in 92. 93. 94 I served with him in the Legislature. In 95 & 96 I did not offer my services but Martin was elected both years. In 97, 98 & 99 I served again with him. I declined offering my Services any more, but Martin was elected several years afterwards. I omitted to say we both voted for the famous Va. resolution of 98 & 99.

During my services in the Legislature I do not recollect the precise year a vacancy occurred for Brigadier Genl. Capt. Martin was a candidate for the office, his opponent was a Mr. Clay, Clay was a man of high Standing and a considerable debater in the Legislature and had been a member of Congress, Martin was elected by a handsome majority. About the time Martin was elected Genl. he was appointed by the Legislature in company with Genl. Peter Johnson Chaunlar Cread Taylor, to meet with three Commissioners appointed by N. Carolina to extend the line between Va. and North Carolina, to the Cumberland mountains. This business they transacted to the satisfaction of both States. (8) The line they run crossed in the old Cumberland gap on a tree which was the corner tree of Kentucky, N. C. & Va. When Genl. Martin declined representing his county in the Legislature he sold out all of his lands on Smiths River and moved to Leatherwood in the same county and fixed himself comfortably and remained there as long as he lived. He was respected by all who knew him.



Haywood states that Walden, Cox, Blivins & some 16 others visited Powell's & Carter's Valleys & established a station there in 1761. Draper did not believe this & asks Redd of it. Redd had never heard of it; the Indians were then at war with the whites; the long hunters hardly ever went more than 2 or 3 together & he does not think the statement true. He thinks they may have established a hunters station there a few years after 1761. Martin's fort (station) was on Martin's Creek, north side, several fine springs near it. It consisted of 5 or 6 cabins, they were built some 30 feet apart with strong stockades between them; in the stockades were port holes, & the station covered about 1/2 mile, in shape a parallelogram. Woods came near it on north; not re-occupied after abandoned in 1776. In 1775 Brice Martin made an entry at Beaver Dam Springs some 6 miles below Martin's Station. He made none here in 1769 for he was then with his brother in his effort to settle Powell's Valley, where they remained but one day. Brice Martin died in Henry Co., Va., in 1817 or 1818. Tall, active muscular, dark hair. Had 2 sons only, Wm., died about same time as his father; Jos. migrated & "was living in Tenn. some 8 or 10 years ago" (1849).



Sir, HlLLSBOROUGH, July, I2th, The proprietors of the lands purchased of the Cherokee Ind", and whereon you live is a part, have lately been informed that sundry familys are settled down the Valley twenty or thirty miles below the gap; which hath given umbrage to the Indians, and in consequence of some disputes have arrisen & a man or so killed; if this be a truth, we are induced to believe that such settlements have been made without your approbation, as you were desired not to allow any person to settle below a place called the narrows. Such a piece of conduct at this time would be highly prejudicial to the proprietors, and perhaps bring on disputes between us and the Indians, when everything of that kind should be cautiously avoided. Therefore, we hope you will exert your endeavours to put a stop to such procedure, and if any person shall have settled down the Valley as above said, contrary to the proprietors directions, and of course (we suppose) without your consent, you will be pleased to let them know that they will not have lands granted to them there, but ought immediately to remove themselves to some other place, as we can by no means think of suffering people to settle on our lands in such a manner as to involve us in any dispute with the Indians.—I am for Richd Henderson & Co. Sir, Your most obt. Hbt. Serv. Wm. Johnston. To Capt. Joseph Martin.


[From a copy by L. C. Draper now in the Wisconsin State Historical Society.]

TROOPS ON NORTH CAROLINA FRONTIER, 1777. Report of the committee appointed to enquire into the expediency of keeping a body of militia stationed on the frontier of this State, and to whom were referred letters from the Governor of Virginia, and the President of South Carolina, on the subject of a treaty of peace with the Cherokee Indians. Your committee having examined Sundry letters, depositions, &c. &c. have obtained well-authenticated information that the Cherokees have committed frequent hostilities on the frontiers of this State, and the State of Virginia, during the last winter and this Spring—and that they have killed nine of the inhabitants since the 2Oth of January last, with the usual circumstances of savage barbarity. And that the Indians under the Dragon Canoe and other chiefs, adverse to peace, are still pushing on the war, and perpetrating almost daily acts of cruelty and murder. Your committee are, therefore, of opinion that there is little or no probability of peace with those savages for the Ensuing Summer. Your committee are further of opinion that it is expedient and necessary to take into the pubic service, and keep in pay, 400 men for the defence of the frontiers of this State, and that the service will be much better performed by Independent companies than by Malitia. Your committee are, therefore, of opinion, that Eight Independent companies ought to be immediately raised in the District of Salisbury, Each consisting of one Captain, two Lieutenants, two Sergeants-, one drummer, one clerk of fifty privates. Four companies for Washington, and four com-panics for Rowan and Tryon—to be employed in building and garrisoning Forts, scouting and ranging Service, and all other public service that shall most conduce to the safety of the inhabitants, and most facilitate the operations of war against the Cherokees and other Indians at war with this State. Your committee are of opinion that it is expedient to place 2000 of gunpowder and 4000 of lead, as soon as may be, at Colonel Osborne's in Rowan for a public Magazine there, and also 1000 bushels of salt; and that it is expedient to place 500 of gunpowder, and 1000 of lead, at Colonel Carter's in Washington District, as a public Magazine there, and bushels of salt. Your committee are of opinion that 200 Militia at Washington, and 200 in the frontiers of Rowan and Tryon, should be continued in service until they are relieved by Independent Companies. Your committee are of opinion that it will be proper and expedient never the less for this State to send one or more Commissioners, properly authorized, who may, in conjunction with Commissioners from our sister States of Virginia and South Carolina, hold the intended treaty of pacification, with such Chiefs as have prayed for it, and showed a disposition for peace. ( Signed) WILLIE JONES, Chair". [ Endorsed:] "Committee for Indian Affairs, &c. &c. For Consideration."[9]



To Captain Joseph Martin: You are hereby appointed Agent & Superintendent of Cherokee Indian Affairs for the State of Virginia, and you are to reside at some place in that Nation in order to nego-ciate and direct all things relating to the Commonwealth & which concern the Interest thereof, using your best endeavours from time to time to preserve peace with that Nation & to cultivate their present good Disposition. You are also to give Intelligence to the Governor for the time being of all occurrences that happen in your Department which shall concern Government to know, and to counteract the evil Desires of the Enemy and their intrigues to debauch these Indians from our friendship and in all things to promote the Interest of the commonwealth according to the utmost of your skill and Judgement, and all the subjects of this State are required to be aiding and assisting to you herein. Given under my hand & the seal of the Commonwealth at Wmsburgh this 3d day of November 1777.

STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA. To Joseph Martin Esquire Greeting. P. HENRY.

Whereas our General Assembly have nominated you to be our Agent of Indian Affairs. We reposing especial trust & confidence in your fidelity Integrity and abilities. Do by these Presents constitute and appoint you Our Agent of Indian Affairs aforesaid, to have hold and exorcise all the powers authorities by an act of our General Assembly in such case made, together with such emoluments which to the said office belong or of right appertain. Conforming yourself to said act of our General Assembly, and to such instructions you shall receive from time to time from me, in your said Agency. Witness Alexander Martin, Esquire our Governor, Captain General & Commander in chief under his hand & our Great Seal at Hillsb0. the 17th Day of May 1783 and Seventh year of our Independence.



The House proceedes to take up the report of the Committee to whom was referred the petition of Wm. Blount and other citizens of North Carolina, which after some amendments was agreed to and is as follows: The Committee to whom was referred the petition of Mr. Blount in behalf of himself and other Citizens of North Carolina. Respecting the expediency of laying out a new County to including all that tract of Land lying on the Tenesee River which shall be included by a line drawn from the South Bank of the said River, where the northwest boundary of this State crosses and running west till it crosses the said River Tenesee again, to the South bank thereof, then up the said South Bank of said River to the place of beginning, after having received all the information they could obtain, on that subject are of the opinion it will be necessary in order to prevent future contests to take measures as soon as it may be done with propriety to settle the said Tract of Country, and do recommend for that purpose that Seven Commissioners be appointed and vested with the power necessary to ascertain the Quantity, Quality and Circumstances of the aforesaid Lands, and report the same with their proceedings to the Legislature for their consideration and to make them such Compensations as may be adequate and Satisfactory. Provided notwithstanding that the said Board shall have power, and they are hereby authorized if they or a Majority of them think it necessary in such manner as to them seems most expedient to proceed to grant Warrants of Surety which shall, when accepted, be transmitted with the platts to the Surveyor General's office in order that the same may pass to a Grant as the Law directs. Provided that no one person shall be eligible to hold or obtain a grant for more than One Thousand Acres, and that he or they so obtaining a warrant shall at the same time give Bond and Security to pay into the Treasury of this State at and after the rate of one Eighth of a Dollar p Acre which sum shall be paid before he, She or they shall obtain a Grant. And they are hereby appointed Justices for said district, that the said Board shall be Authorized to Nominate Melitia Officers who shall be commissioners by his Honor the Governor— Copy Extracts from the Minutes JOHN WILKENSON. House OF ASSEMBLY, 21 Feb., 1784. The house proceeded to the Appointment of Commissioners for Examining the Quantity and Quality of the Lands on the Tenesee River agreeably to the resolve of the Twelfth Instant when the following persons were appointed, vizt: Lachlin McIntosh Junr William Downs, Stephen Heard, John Morse, John Donilson, Joseph Martin, and John Severe, Esquires. Copy. Extracts from the Minutes. JOHN WILKENSON, C. A.


Dear Sir: I had the Pleasure to receive your favour by Capt. Bledsoe The Gentleman whose name you mentioned as you expected I believe said several things to your Prejudice tho' I did not hear him. Had there have been an Assembly I should have taken care to have presented if in my power anything being done against you unheard, indeed if there had been an Assembly I am very sure he could not have injured you. I am very glad to find that you have made the Purchase of the Indians of the Bend of Tenesee and I think cheap enough the most of the Goods to make the Payment with were purchased in Philadelphia early in September, and we have certain accounts that a vessel on board of which they were shipped sailed on the fifth of October from Philadelphia for Washington, where my Brother lives and at that place they must be arrived before this if the Gale of the Seventh of October which was very hard has not proved fatal to both vessel and Goods. If they are arrived at Washington as I expect they are the Payment will be made by the first day January at farthest if they are not arrived they must be lost and the Payment can not be made before We can again send to Philadelphia. I am told that a certain Dispute has arose between the States of Georgia and South Carolina by the latter claiming a Right to back lands as far West as to the Missisippi now if South Carolina has any back lands the Bend of Tenesee must be a Part of it. This dispute between the two States will in my opinion be very favorable to our Designs of obtaining the Georgia Title or the South Carolina Title and either will answer our Purpose equally well for we shall surely settle the Country before the Dispute can be determined and in order to procure a Title from one or both of those States I will certainly attend both their next Assemblies and I have not the least doubt but I shall succeed. Gen. Rutherford has agreed to become a joint Adventurer with us in the purchase and I have this day given him an Investment of writing interesting him as much as either of the Original Adventurers—It was good Policy to do so and Gen. Caswell advises it to be done and I hope it will be quite agreeable to you and Col. Donelson. I am glad to find that Col. Severe has also joined the Company. A Number of People have here entered lands which I am sure they know lays without the limits of the State and in the Bent within the limits of our Purchase. And expect to get Grants from this State I hope Care will be taken to have the line of this State well known, that the Persons making surveys without the limits may not be able to plead Ignorance. It would seem to me that every Person I have seen here envyed Us the Purchase and wished to own a Part of the Bent of Tenesee—I am with much Esteem, Your most Obt Humble Servant WM BLOUNT. P. S. I think it will be best to admit some more Parties in Georgia or South Carolina and probably shall be obliged to do it— To Col. Joseph Martin.


Dear Sir, Herewith you will receive a reply to the Petition presented by me to the Assembly of the State of Georgia in behalf thereon. The Petition I hope will meet your approbation. I thought it the best calculated to suit the Tempere of the General Assembly and to assure the Purposes of the Com- 18 pany that I could invent—The Resolutions are as favourable as I could procure tho' not as I could wish and I can assure you they passed with much Dificulty and attention—The Commissoners of the State of Georgia with whom I had several meetings are very well disposed I could not wish for better then Those of North Carolina were some nominated by myself in the fullest confidence that each of them would act. It is unnecessary to say anything to induce you to act but to beg your attention to the Resolutons especially that Part which impowers the Commissioners to make The Company such Compensation as may be adequate and satisfactory Nothing will more readily influence the Commissioners of Georgia to grant the Company a large quantity of Land than an appearance of many People being about to remove to the Bent under the Influence of the Company therefore you will necessarily keep up a Report of as many being about to remove as you possibly can whether true or not—I really intend moving out there to live and I have no doubt but I shall bring with me fifty Families at least—I want much to go out with you to explore the Country which I cant do but I hope to be able to meet you in June at the long Island of Hoston tho' before that I expect the Pleasure of seeing you at Hillsboro—You will observe the Commissioners [ one line illegible] if the Commissioners of So. Carolina have no objections I should be glad to be appointed Colonel, those of Georgia have already assured me that I shall be appointed and have promised me to bring up the commission with them as well as Blanks for other Officers— You will see I have made use of Bledsoes name altho he had never signed the Articles my Reasons for so doing were he was known to be an able Mountain Man and of much Influence consequently in the Eyes of the State of Georgia gave Weight to the Petitioners. You will please mention this Circumstance to him—Downs and Herd I believe are Duane Letters. 267 known to you and will in my opinion in all Cases be in Sentiment with you

              • **********

[ Two lines illegible.]

is a sensible young man—Truth is they all appear to have a great thurst for Tenesee Lands—I am with much Esteem & Respect Your most Obt Humble Servant, WM. Blount. Col. John Donelson.


At Govr. Caswell's Dear Gentlemen, By a letter directed to Major Geo. Doherty and I believe wrote by Col. W. Armstrong We have been informed that only Genl. Herd of the Georgia Commissioners appeared and that he and the three Carolina Commissioners have determined that an Office for the Entry of the Bent lands shall be opened at the long Island of Holston sometime in March next. From the Commissioners themselves We have received no Information with respect to their Proceedings tho' we have much wished it—I purpose certainly to attend in the Character of a Commissioner the Indian Treaty which is at present intended to be held between the 2Oth of April and lOth of May and I believe it is also certain that Majr. Gen1. Caswell will attend as a Commissioner and We can only say that should you open the Entry office before you see one or both of us that We want you to secure as much of the Bent as may be in your Power.—Can't the Tme of opening the office (atho March is the Time fixed) be postponed until he holding of the Treaty when I will as I have before said certainly be present.

  • * * * * * * ***

Your most Obt Humble Servant, WM. Blount. [10]

Mess™. Severe, Martin & Donelson.

( Concluded.)

End Notes

  • 1. See Weeks' Martin, pp. 412-415.
  • 2. See Appendix II.
  • 3. Cocke's conduct is, I believe, correctly stated—but this battle happened sometime before Col. Christian reached Eaton's Fort—nor were there many of Cocke's party as Maj. Redd seems to think. See Haywoods Hist. of Tenne.—official account and his statement—I. CD.
  • 4. From this to the end, the MSS. has appeared in the Virginia Magazine Historical and Biographical, Oct., 1899, vol. vii, No. 2, pp. 113-118, the Editor stating that the previous portion, here given, was missing from the MSS. in collection of Virginia Historical Society.
  • 5. See Weeks's Martin, p. 425, about this time the State of North Carolina was considering the employment of troops in the section. See appendix III.
  • 6. See Weeks's Martin, pp. 425, 456; also appendix iv. 13]
  • 7. See Weeks's Martin, p. 439; also appendix v.]
  • 8. This was the Virginia-Tenessee boundary survey, see Weeks's Martin, p. 472.
  • 9. [ Note by L. C. Draper. No date. Perhaps in 1778: In 1779 Tryon County was abolished, and Lincoln and Rutherford Counties formed from its Territory; and as Tryon County is referred to in the preceding report, it was clearly written prior to its extinction. Possibly in Spring of 1777—prior to treaty of Long Isld of Holston.]
  • 10. For documents bearing on the Tennessee Yazoo Company which a few years later secured grants in the Bend of Tennessee, now- northern Alabama, see The Gulf States Historical Magazine, I, p. 141, Sept. 1902.