Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Almost Fled In Fear

From Pioneer Collections...(recollections of Aura P. Stewart of St. Clair County, Michigan):

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"I will now related an incident as related to me [Aura P. Stewart] by my step-mother [Mary Graverat].  At the assault made by the British on lower Sandusky, commanded by Colonel Croghan, there were many Indians from about Mackinac that accompanied the British troops, but they met with such a spirited resistance that they hurried back in great fright.  The Indians traveled in their large birch canoes, which would carry sixteen persons.


Two canoes filled with the retreating Indians was passing up the St. Clair river, and when opposite Harsen's Island they were overtaken by a thunder storm at about eight o'clock at night, and one of the canoes filled with Indians was upset; here about sixteen Indian warriors in the middle of the river in total darkness, struggling to find the shore, their whoops and yells mingling with the thunder's roar, rendered the scene truly frightful.  My step-mother in her fright seized an infant daughter of her brother's, threw a blanket around it, and was about rushing for the woods, fearing death...but her brother refused to let her go.

At dawn the next morning, two canoes were seen to leave the opposite side of the river, and approaching the residence of my step-mother; on landing, the Indians came on shore, over twenty in number, their faces painted black; they told Mr. Graverat that they had been to war, that the British were defeated at lower Sandusky and a great many killed; that they were returning home, that one of their canoes was upset that night and two of their number drowned; that on account of the darkness of the night they had great difficulty in getting ashore.  Mr. Graverat wished that the whole of them had been drowned, yet he expressed sorrow for their misfortunes, and they in turn advised him to leave immediately, as the Kit-che-moco-mons (Long Knives) were coming by the hundreds and would kill him."

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