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panies extending on our right and left. We had 1 man killed, and 9 wounded; 2 of which have since died of their wounds. The loss of the enemy must have been considerable ; I saw 7 fall to the ground with my own eye, among whom was their king, Payne: two of them fell near the swamp, the rest our men had the curiosity to scalp. The rifle company on the right, and Broadnax's on the left, speak of killing several near the swamp, who were borne off by their comrades; it being a principle among the savages, to carry off their dead at the risk of their lives. We remained on the battle ground watching the movements of the Indians, who were near the swamp painting themselves, and appeared to be in consultation; all of which indicated an intention to renew the combat. Accordingly, halt an hour before sun set, having obtained a considerable reinforcement of negroes and Indians, from their towns, they commenced the most horrid yells imaginable, imitating the cries and noise of almost every animal of the forest : their chiefs advancing in front, in a stooping, serpentine manner, and making the most wild and frantic gestures, until they approached within 200 yards of us, when they halted, and commenced firing. Our men were not to be alarmed by their noise and yells; but, as instructed, remained perfectly still and steady behind logs and trees, until the enemy, by this forbearance, had approached somewhat nearer, when a brisk and well directed fire from our line, soon drove them back to their original ground. I would now have ordered the charge ; but, being under the necessity, from the extension of the enemy's line, of detaching nearly one half of my force to protect our camp and wounded, (the assailing of which, is a great object with Indians) I was left to contend with a force three times as numerous as my own. The action lasted until 8 o'clock, when the enemy were completely repulsed in every attempt, whether made upon our centre or flanks. We had two men killed, and one wounded; the enemy carried off several of their men before it was dark; after which, all firing (of course at random) was at the spot from whence the flash arose. After fighting and fasting, the whole day, we had to work through the night; and at day-light, had a tolerable breast-work of logs and earth, with port holes, on the ground on which the battle was fought: we were reduced to this necessity; for, in despatching captain Whitaker about dark, to St. John's for a reinforcement, six more men took the liberty to accompany him, taking with them our best horses : our pilot and surgeon, (who was sick,) was among the number. The two days succeeding the battle, we neither saw nor heard any thing of the enemy; but, on the evening of the third day, they commenced firing on our work, at a long distance, and renewed it every day, for 5 or 6 days, but without killing or wounding any of our men. After killing two or three of them, through our port holes, they seldom came within gun shot. Seven or eight days had now elapsed, since our express had left us hun
ger was staring us in the face, and we were reduced to the necessity of eating one of our horses; we had no surgeon to dress the wounded, and apprehensions were entertained, that the enemy would receive reinforcements from Augustine, or the Makäsukie Indians. Expecting relief every hour, I was unwilling to leave our breast-work, while we had a horse left to eat; but I understood, from some of my officers, that a certain captain was determined to leave us, with his company; and that many of the men, giving up all hopes of relief, talked of deserting in the night, rather than perish, or fall a sacrifice to the merciless negroes and Indians, whom they were taught to believe would surround us in great numbers in a few days. In this trying situation, when our few remaining horses were shot down by them, and the number of our sick daily increasing, I reluctantly assented to leave our works that night, and directed the litters to be prepared, to carry the wounded. About 9 o'clock we commenced our distressing march, carrying 5 wounded men in litters, and supporting two or three more.
We had not proceeded more than eight miles, when the men became perfectly exhausted from hunger and fatigue, and were unable to carry the wounded any farther. About two hours after we left our breast-works, 25 horsemen, with provisions, arrived to our relief, on a different road from the one we had taken; but, from motives best known to themselves, instead of following us, returned to St. John's, and we were left to encounter new difficulties ; two men that I had despatched on the path the horsemen came, by some means or other missing them. We again constructed a plan of defence,
and I despatched sergeant-major Reese, with one private, to Picolata, to learn what had occasioned the delay of our expected supplies ; and told him I should remain where I was, until I could hear from him, and endeavoured to procure cattle, as I discovered signs of their being near us. The evil genius of captain
again prevailed; and I have since learned from captain Cone, that this person instigated not only him, but many of the privates, to urge a departure from our works, even in the day time, when I was convinced that the Indians, knowing our weak situation, would endeavour to ambuscade. This gentleman, if innocent, will have an opportunity of proving himself so before a court martial.
With a burning fever on me, and scarcely able to walk, the march was ordered about 3 o'clock, P. M. I had directed the adjutant, captain Harden, to march in front, to avoid all places where there could be an ambuscade, and the litters should be distributed among the different companies. Being extremely weak, I marched in the rear, with captain
(who carried my firelock,) lieutenant Fannin, and about 15 or 20 privates. We had scarcely marched five miles, before the front of the detachment discovered the heads of several Indians, on both sides of the path, from among several pine trees that were laid prostrate by the hurricane; the same instant, the enemy fired upon our
advanced party, and shot down four of them; one, a Spaniard, died on the spot, and two survived a few days; my negro boy was one of them. The moment I heard the firing, I ordered the detachment to charge, and the Indians were completely defeated, in 15 minutes ; many of them dropping their guns, and the whole running off, without ever attempting to rally; four were left dead on the field; and I am convinced, from the constant fire we kept up,
that many inore must have been slain, but were bid from our view, by the thick palmetto bushes. We lay on the battle ground all night, and started next day at 10 o'clock-marched five miles, and again threw up breast-works, between two ponds, living upon gophers, alligators, and palmetto stocks, until sergeant-major Reese arrived with provisions, and 14 horses, when we were enabled to proceed to St. John's with all our sick and wounded, where a gun-boat, by the direction of colonel Smith, was in waiting for us, which conveyed us to his camp, where we met with every attention that humanity or benevolence could bestow.
I cannot refrain from here expressing the high sense I have of the care and anxiety which colonel Smith has manifested for the detachment under my command, and his promptitude in afford ing every aid in his power, when apprized of our situation. My pen can scarcely do justice to the merits of the brave officers and men under my command, their fortitude under all their privations and distresses never forsaking them. Captain Hamilton (who volunteered as a private, his company having left him at the expiration of their time) lieutenant Fannin, ensign Hamilton and adjutant Harden distinguished themselves in a particular manner, being always among the first to charge, and first in pursuit; sergeants Holt and Attaway likewise acted very bravely, and Fort's company in general (being always near me and under my immediate view) advanced to the charge with the steadiness of veterans. Lieutenant Broadnax showed a great deal of courage and presence of mind, and ensign Mann, who was wounded in the first action, fought well. Captain Cone, who was wounded in the head early in the action, behaved well, and lieutenant Williams did himself great honour in every action, but particularly in the bold and manly stand he made in the night engagement. Sergeant Hawkins and corporal Neil, of Coleman's company, acted like soldiers, and sergeant-major Reese's activity was only surpassed by his courage; he was every where and always brave. Captain Humphrey's company acted bravely, particularly lieutenant Reed, sergeant Fields, sergeant Cowan, sergeant Denmark, and many of the privates. I can only speak of captain Humphreys from the report of some of his men, who say he acted well; it so happening he never met my eye during either of the engagements, while the conduct of every other person that I have named (except one or two) came under my personal observation.
The number of Indians, in the first engagement, from every circumstance that appeared, must have been from 75 to 100. In the second engagement, their number, including negroes (who are their best soldiers) was double our's; and, in the third engagement, there appeared to be 50, which was nearly equal to our force, after deducting the sick and wounded. From every circumstance I am induced to believe that the number of killed and wounded among the Indians, must be at least fifty.
I have the honour to be yours, &c.
DANIEL NEWMAN. His Excellency David B. Mitchell.
PITTSBURG, October 23d, 1812. SIR,
I embrace this opportunity to render you an account of the garrison of Chicago.
On the 9th of August last, I received orders from general Hull to evacuate the
post and proceed with my command to Detroit, by land, leaving it at my discretion to dispose of the public property as I thought proper. The neigbouring Indians got information as early as did, and came in from all quarters in order to receive the goods in the factory store, which they understood were to be given them. On the 13th, Captain Wells, of fort Wayne, arrived with about 30 Miamies, for the purpose of escorting us in, by the request of general Hull. On the 14th, I delivered the Indians all the goods in the factory store, and a considerable quantity of provisions which we could not take away with us. The surplus arms and ammunition I thought proper to destroy, fearing they would make bad use of it if put in their possession. I also destroyed all the liquor on hand soon after they began to collect. The collection was unusually large for that place; but they conducted themselves with the strictest propriety till after I left the fort. On the 15th, at 9 o'clock in the morning, we commenced our march: a part of the Miamies were detached in front and the remainder in our rear, as guards, under the direction of captain Wells. The situation of the country rendered it necessary for us to take the beach, with the lake on our left, and a high sánd bank on our right, at about 100 yards distance.
We had proceeded about a mile and a half, when it was discovered that the Indians were prepared to attack us from behind the bank. I immediately marched up with the company to the top of the bank, when the action commenced; after firing one round, we charged, and the Indians gave way in front and joined those on our flanks. In about fifteen minutes they got possession of all our horses, provisions, and baggage of every description, and finding the Miamies did not assist us, I drew off the few men I had left, and took possession of a small elevation in the open prairie, out of shot of the bank or any other cover. The Indians did not follow me, but assembled in a body on the top of the bank, and after some consultations among themselves, made signs for me to approach them. I advanced towards them alone, and was met by one of the Potawatamie chiefs, called the Black Bird, with an interpreter. After shaking hands, he requested me to surrender, promising to spare the lives of all the prisoners. On a few moments consideration, I concluded it would be most prudent to comply with his request, although I did not put entire confidence in his promise. After delivering up our arms, we were taken back to their encampment near the fort, and distributed among the different tribes. The next morning, they set fire to the fort and left the place, taking the prisoners with them. Their number of warriors was between four and five hundred, mostly of the Potawatamie nation, and their loss, from the best information I could get, was about fifteen. Our strength was fifty four regulars and twelve militia, out of which, twenty-six regulars and all the militia were killed in the action, with two women and twelve children. Ensign George Ronan and doctor Isaac V. Van Voorhis of my company, with captain Wells, of fort Wayne, are, to my great sorrow, numbered among
the dead. Lieutenant Lina T. Helm, with twenty-five non-commissioned officers and privates, and eleven women and children, were prisoners when we were separated. Mrs. Heald and myself were taken to the mouth of the river St. Joseph, and being both badly wounded, were permitted to reside with Mr. Burnet, an Indian trader. In a few days after our arrival there, the Indians all went off to take fort Wayne, and in their absence, I engaged a Frenchman to take us to Michilimackinac by water, where I gave myself up as a prisoner of war, with one of my sergeants
. The commanding officer, captain Roberts, offered me every assistance in his power to render our situation comfortable while we remained there, and to enable us to proceed on our journey. To him I gave my parole of honour, and came on to Detroit and reported myself to colonel Proctor, who gave us a passage to Buffaloe ; from that place I came by the way of Presque Isle, and arrived here yesterday.
I have the honour to be yours, &c.
Captain U. 8. Infantry. 'Thomas H. Cushing, Esqr.