A. E. Hough J. W. Klise.

The county of Highland: a history of Highland County, Ohio, from the ... online

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when the Indians, not doubting but what all the family had
arrived for dinner, fired from their well chosen ambush into the
home. Mrs. Jolly fell dead instantly, John was shot in the mouth
and fell very badly wounded, a daughter and grandson were
wounded at the first fire. Immediately the Indians rushed in, toma-
hawking all the wounded and scalping them while they were in the
death struggles. James had heard the alarm and hurriedly made
his escape. The remaining members of the family at home, Will-
iam, the youngest son, and his cousin Joseph McCune, were made
prisoners by the Indians, who pillaged the house and fired it and
made a rapid retreat. David Jolly, Jr., arrived at his desolate and
burning home only in time to drag the remains of his murdered
friends from the flames, which soon consumed the building. He
ran to the nearest neighbors and gave the alarm. In a few hours
Lewis Wetzel, with his company of veteran scouts, was on the trail,
but the Indians, aware of the bold, daring and energetic character
of the men in and about WTieeling, made a cautious retreat, and
effectually eluded the vigilance of their pursuers. To hasten their
retreat they killed young McCune soon after they set out, because
he was weakly and could not travel very fast, and made a noise cry-
ing, which they feared might attract attention. His body was found
some hours afterward, just where he had sunk under a single blow
from the tomahawk. The Indians who committed this cruel deed
were a war party of Shawanees, who carried their prisoner to San-
dusky. William Jolly at that time was a lad of about ten years of
age, a good constitution, and sprightly turn of mind. He soon?
adapted himself to the Indian mode of life and became a favorite with
the younger portion of the tribe. His family made great effort to
find and release him, but owing to the continued and fierce hostility
which prevailed for the next five years, all their efforts were una-
vailing, as they could not even hear of him, and of course did not
know whether he was alive or dead, or to what extremity of torture
and suffering he had been subjected by his infuriated captors.
After Wayne's treaty, his brother David went to Greenville in hope
of finding him among the prisoners surrendered by the various
northwestern tribes under the treaty stipulations, but after long
waiting and much inquiry, he utterly failed, and returned fully
impressed with the belief that his brother was dead. From that



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38 THE COUNTY OF HIGHLAND.

time he was given up and all effort to rescue him was abandoned.
During the winter of 179G-97, David Jolly, Sr., who had recently
moved to Chillicothe, received a letter from Colonel Zane telling
him that his son William was living with Cherokee Indians on the
Coosa river in Alabama, and directing him to Colonel Whitley, of
Lexington Ky., for further information. Xear the middle of
March, 1797, David, Jr., set out on horseback to Lexington, and
had an interview with Colonel Whitley, who gave him all the nec^
essary instructions, also a letter of introduction to the Governor of
Tennessee. Setting forward again he arrived in Knoxville in
April, delivered his letter to the governor, and Avas kindly received
by him, and by Major Henley, of the War department, who
promptly made out a pass and furnished an experienced and trusty
interpreter and guide. Thus provided, David Jolly pursued his
way sou til, and in due time reached the point in the Cherokee coun-
try, on the Coosa river, to which Col. Whitley had directed them,
but to their great disappointment, found that a large part of the
Indians had gone south and the boy with them. Mr. Jolly and his
companion continued in the pursuit, and traveled on, until they
arrived near Pensacola, before they found the Indians. When they
made their business known, the Indians seemed disposed to give
them but little satisfaction. The young of the party were out hunt-
ing, they said, but they were all Indians, none white. On the
evening of the third day the young Indians all came into camp with
the proceeds of their hunt, and Mr. Jolly soon recognized his
brother, more from family resemblance than anything else, for he
w^as dressed in full Indian costume, and looked and acted as much
like an Indian as any of his companions. He endeavored to draw
him into conversation in English, but the boy had either forgotten
it or was not disposed to talk. When he conmiimicated through
the interpreter his intention of taking him back, he positively
refused to go, and the Indians appeared inclined to interpose to pre-
vent him. When, however, the authority of the agent of the War
department was read to them by the interpreter, they made no fur-
ther objections, but hastily prepared to return to their homes on
the Coosa. So the w^hole party accompanied them back that far.
Then they discovered that the boy had been adopted by a woman
who had her only son killed in battle. She regarded young Jolly
as one sent by the Great Spirit as a substitute for him she had lost,
and she loved him with all a mother's devotion, and he returned it
with all the warmth and generosity of his nature. She was almost
frantic when she heard that he must leave her by the authority of
the United States government. But after a long and tender inter-
view which continued through the greater part of the night, in
w^hich she made the boy promise that he would soon escape and
return to her, they started the next morning. A large number of



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FRONTIER ADVENTURES. 39

the young Indians accompanied them the first day, and after that a
few continued to follow imtil they arrived at the Tennessee river.
Ihiring the jouraey through the wilderness Jolly was sullen and
refused to talk, and sought to escape, but was too carefully guarded.
But from Knoxville home his brother had no difficulty with him.
As they passed the neighborhood of Lexington, Ky., the boy, being
in Indian dress, attracted much attention, and many young ladies
of course were anxious to see the ^'young Indian." When some
handsome girls were around him his brother asked him how he
would like to have one of them for his wife. He shook his head
and said *'Too much white, too much white.'' After young »Tolly
returned to his father and became somewhat reconciled to civilized
life, he gave a brief history of his seven years' captivity. When
carried to Sandusky he was well treated, much to his surprise, as he
had witnessed the murder of his little cousin, McCune, on the
route, and had always heard of the cruel and bloo<l-thirsty nature
of the Indians. The next spring after he was taken Mr. and Mrs.
Dick were brought into the same encampment On one occasion
when she was there the Indians all got drunk and exhibited much
of their savage nature and habits. Mrs. Dick was much alarmed
for the safety of the boy, and the better to protect him, covered
him up in one comer of the wigwam in a pile of bear skins. Soon
after this young Jolly was transferred to the Cherokees, a small
party of whom were on a visit to their Shawanee brethren, and the
Cherokees soon afterward set out for the South, taking him with
them. They took the trail to Old Town on the Xortli fork of
P.aint^ From there they struck and kept the hill region to the Ohio
river at the mouth of Cabin creek. After crossing the river they
again took the hills on to the Cumberland mountains, avoided all
white settlements and kept the mountains on to Tennessee. Young
Jolly seemed to regret deeply his separation from his Indian friends
in the south. He liked their mode of life, the delightful climate,
and more than all their warm friendship and native magnanimity.
In fact, he had become a» thorough Indian in his habits and tastes.
The life of the white man was irksome to him, and he longed for
the sylvan shades and warm hearts on the banks of the Coosa. He
had no taste or inclination for work, but was an adept in hunting
and fishing, and spent most of his time with his bow and arrows
on the banks of the Scioto and Paint Generally, in summer time,
when he would desert from the field work, he would climb a tree
and weave himself a bed of limbs and grape vines where he lay all
day dreaming doubtless of his happy home in the sunny south*
The next summer after he returned to his family two Indians, his
adopted- brothers, came from Alabama to see him. They brought
with them his pony, gun, tomahawk and hunting implements, also
some pretty worked belts, and moccasins, sent by his Indian mother.



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40 THE COUNTY OP HIGHLAND.

Young Jolly was overjoyed at the sight of his Indian brothers.
They ate together in Indian style, slept together, hunted together,
and during the two weeks of their stay were inseparable. But it
was a sorrowful day when the Indians left He made them pres-
ents of anything he could get his hands on that would be likely to
please their fancy. He also fixed up some presents for others of
his friends among the tribe, not forgetting his old Indian mother,
and when the morning came for them to start he went with them
one day's journey.

After the defeat of St. Clair (1791) the Indians were inspired
with the hope of driving out the white men and regaining tlie hunting
grounds of their fathers. So bold and persistent were their incur-
sions upon the border settlements, that the inhabitants were kept in
perpetual alarm, and immigration was entirely suspended. Spies
and scouts were employed by the government of Kentucky to roam tlie
forest in all directions keeping sharp lookout for Indian advances,
when they were to notify the settlers in time for their escape to the
block house and forts. Duncan McArthur and Samuel Davis with
two others were detailed as scouts and these four men were sent out
to keep guard, upon whose faithful vigilance depended the safety and
security of life and home. McArthnr and Davis were brave and cun-
ning woodmen, accustomed to this wild and dangerous life amid lurk-
ing foes and savage beasts. These two men were linked together by
the strongest ties of friendship and were seldom separated when hunt-
ing Indians.

At one time they ascended the Ohio river as far as the mouth of
the Scioto. They crossed over the Ohio the next morning about day-
light, for the purpose of visiting a deer lick of which they knew the
locality. When near the lick McArthur stopped while Davis crept
silently onward to within easy rifle range of the spot, when slowly and
silently rising to his full height to see if the lick was clear, he was
greeted by the sharp crack of a rifle and the whiz of the ball near his
person. The morning was moist and the air heavy, and the smoke
of the Indian's gun so obscured his vision that he could not see the
effect of his shot. Stepping outside the circle of smoke to get a better
view, Davis shot him dead in his tracks. Just then IMcArthur rushed
up, well knowing that the shots were too near together to come from
the same rifle. Soon the noise of running feet caught their ears and
quite a number of Indians appeared. The two daring scouts were
well hidden in the bushes and high weeds, and while the Indians
halted by their dead comrade, silently slipped away, regained their
canoe and crossed over the river.

Israel Donalson while with Massie near the waters of Brush cr^ek
surveying, was captured by the Indians and carried a prisoner toward
their towns upon the Miami. In their journey they passed the local-
ity of the present to^vTi of [N'ew Market and must have come within



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FRONTIER AD\ENTURES. 41

two or three miles of Hillsboro. One nighty having tied Donalson
with a bark rope, the Indians camped for the night. To better secure
their prisoner an Indian lay upon each side of -him with the ends of
the rope under them. Donalson had no notion of being roasted alive
if he could prevent it and determined to escape. Upon this night,
when satisfied his captors were asleep, he began to gnaw at his ropes,
which he succeeded in eating off just about daylight Crawling off
to the edge of the open ground he sat dowTi to put on his moccasins,
when the Indians awoke and discovered that their prisoner was gone.
With loud yells they started on the hunt for him. Donalson ran
with one moccasin in his hand and after a desperate pursuit, suc-
ceeded in making his escape, and foot sore and weary Veached Fort
Washington.

In the spring of 1791 a band of warriors from the Shawanee tribe
crossed the Ohio opposite the mouth of Eagle creek, stole a lot of
horses, burned houses and murdered some of the families of Mason
county, Ky. Simon Kenton raised a party and went in pursuit of
them. The Indians took a course almost due north. Kenton made
a forced march and reached the Rocky Fork branch of Paint creek
in the evening at a point now on the farm of John H. Jolly. Pass-
ing up the ridge where the town of Hillsboro now is, they followed the
band of robbers until, a few miles away, the scouts reported the pres-
ence of Indians. Kenton halted his party and sent one Timothy
Dauning ahead to locate the foe. Dauning had not gone far when
he caught sight of an Indian loitering behind, doubtless for the same
purpose that Dauning was advancing. By some means Dauning got
the start of the Indian and killed him. The report of the rifle
alarmed the main body of the Indians, who scattered through the
woods leaving their horses and plunder behind them. Kenton failed
to overtake them and returned with the goods and chattels of his
dead friend.

In 1792 the Indians again invaded Kentucky, stealing horses, burn-
ing houses and killing some of the inhabitants as they had done the
spring before. Simon Kenton was called upon to head a party of
thirty-seven men to follow the savages and avenge the death of those
that had been slain. They crossed the Ohio river a short distance
below Limestone and followed the trail in the direction of Little
Miami river. When near the East fork of the river, they heard the
tinkling of a bell and the party halted to learn its meaning. Kenton
in company with Cornelius Washburn, a young man of tried courage
and deadly aim, advanced cautiously and saw an Indian on horseback
slowly approaching. The bell upon the horse's neck was used to
attract the attention of deer, for strange as it may appear, these ani-
mals will stand stock still, listening to the bell, until the horseman is
almost upon them. Washburn took deliberate aim and shot the ap^
proaching horseman through the heart. Ketuming to the main body



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42 THE COUNTY OF HIGHLAND.

Kenton consulted with his men in regard to their future course. Ken-
ton felt certain that this Indian was not alone, and that the main body
was not far away. Sending Washburn in advance the party moved
silently forward. Washburn soon returned with the information
that about a mile in advance he had heard the sound of many bells,
and concluded that the horses w^ere feeding, and the Indians encamped
not very far from them. Calling a halt and arranging his men in
position to defend themselves if attacked, Kenton selected Washburn
and started out to locate the camp. It was getting dusk when he
came in view" of the camp of the enemy. They were encamped on
the bank of the East fork of the Little Miami just above the present
residence of Michael Stroup, and within the present limit of High-
land county.

The Indians were well supplied with tents, which were doubtless
the spoils of St. Clair's defeat. While the exact number of the
Indians could not be ascertained, Kenton was well assured that they
numbered three or four times that of his own men. Nothing daunted
by the superior number of the foe, it was decided to attack them, and
midnight Avas selected as the time, as Kenton desired darkness to cover
his retreat if defeated in his effort to whip them.: Kenton brought
his men near the encampment without attracting the attention of the
band, and dividing his comapny into squads of four men each, gave
them instructions that w^hen the signal of attack was given they should
fire into as many different tents as possible. The signal was given,
and the men advanced by fours so silently that they were within two
or three paces of the encampment without being discovered. Then
with loud yells they rushed upon their sleeping foe, firing into the
tents against the bodies of the enemy. The Indians taken by sur-
prise broke through the back of the tents and retreated. But not
half the tents had been fired into, and the Indians seeing how few
the number of their assailants were, returned, secured their arms and
assumed the attack. On the other side of the creek there was another
line of tents that had not been seen by the whites, and from them,
came reinforcements for the red men. Kenton's quick eye saw this
and the effort, of his foes to surround him, and ordered a retreat. The
battle lasted but a few minutes. It was afterward learned from a
white man by the name of Riddle, who lived with the Indians, that
their number was about two hundred, and that they were led by the
celebrated chieftain, Tecumseh. When the attack began this chief
was lying upon the ground outside of his tent near the fire. Jump-
ing to his feet he called to his warriors to repel the attack ; then springs
ing forward killed with his war club a man by the name of John
Barr. The Indians lost thirty killed in the fight and the whites but
two, John Barr and Mclntire. Mclntire was captured the next
morning after the battle by Tecumseh and turned over to some
Indians at camp, who in the absence of their chief killed and scalped



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FRONTIER ADVENTURES. 43

the prisoner, much to the regret of this truly great chieftain, who was
never known to be cruel to a captured foe, and sought to impress
more humane feelings in the breasts of his warriors. Barr's bones
were left on the battlefield, and were gathered and buried by Joseph
Van Meter, William Spickard, and Daniel Jones, the first settlers on
the lands in the vicinity of the battle.

A diflFerent accoimt of this battle is to be found in McClung^s West-
em Adventures, as follows: '*The trail led them down on the
Miami, and about noon on the second day they heard a bell in front,
apparently from a horse grazing. Cautiously approadiing it, they
beheld a solitary Indian mounted on horseback leisurely advancing
toward them. A few of their best marksmen fired upon him and
brought him to the ground. After a short consultation they deter-
mined to follow his back trail, and ascertain whether there were more
in the neighborhood. A small active woodman named Mclntire,
accompanied by three others, were pushed in advance, in order to give
them early notice of the enemy's appearance, while the main body
followed at a more leisurely pace. Within an hour Mclntiro
returned, and reported that they were then in a short distance of a
large party of Indians, supposed to be greatly superior to their own ;
that they were encamped in a bottom upon the border of a creek, and
were amusing themselves, apparently awaiting the arrival of the
Indian whom they had just killed, as they would occasionally halloo
loudly, and then laugh immoderately, supposing probably that their
comrade had lost his way. This intelligence fell like a shower bath
upon the spirits of the party, who, thinking it more prudent to put
a greater interval between themselves and the enemy, set spur to their
horses and galloped back in the direction from which they had come.
Such was the panic that one of the footmen, a huge, hulking fellow
six feet high, in his zeal for his own safety sprang up behind Captain
Calvin, and nothing short of a threat to blow his brains out could
induce him to dismount. In this disorderly fashion they scampered
through the woods for several miles, when, in obedience to the orders
of Kenton and Calvin, they halted, and prepared for resistance in
case the enemy had discovered them and were engaged in pursuit.
Kenton and Calvin were engaged apart in earnest consultation. It
was proposed that a number of saplings should be cut down and a tem-
porary breast-work erected, and while the propriety of these measures
was under discussion the men were left to themselves.
Finding themselves not pursued by the enemy, as they expected, it
was determined to remain in their present position until night, when
a rapid attack was to be made in two divisions upon the Indian camp,
under the impression that the darkness of the night and the surprise
of the enemy might give them an advantage they could not hope foi*
in daylight. Accordingly, everything remaining quiet at dusk, they
again mounted and advanced rapidly, but in profound silence, upon



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44 THE COUNTY OF HIGHLAND.

the Indian camp. It was ascertained that the horses which the enemy
had stolen were grazing in a rich bottom below the camp. As they
were advancing to the attack, Calvin sent his son with several haltera
to regain their own horses, and he prepared to carry them off in case
the enemy should overpower them. The attack was then made in
two divisions. Calvin conducted the upper and Kenton the lower
party. The wood was thick, but the moon shone out clearly, and
enabled them to distinguish objects with sufficient precision. Cal-
vin's party came first in contact with the Indians. They had
advanced within thirty yards of a large fire in front of a number of
tents without having seen a single Indian, when a dog which had been
watching them, sprang forward to meet them, baying loudly. Pres-
ently an Indian appeared approaching cautiously toward them,
speaking occasionally to the dog in the Indian tongue. This sight
was too tempting to be borne, and Calvin heard the click of a dozen
rifles, as his party cocked them in order to fire. The Indian was too
close to permit Calvin to speak, but turning to his men he earnestly
waved his hand as a warning to be quiet Then cautiously raising
his own rifle, he fired with a steady aim, just as the Indian reached
the fire and stood fairly exposed to its light. The report of the rifle
broke the stillness of the night and their ears were soon deafened by
the yells of the enemy. The Indian at whom Calvin fired fell for-
ward into the burning pile of faggots, and by his stniggling to extri-
cate himself scattered the brands so much as to almost extinguish the
light. Dusky forms were seen flitting before them, which drew the
fire from the whites, but with what effect could not be seen. A heavy
fire now began from the Indian camp, which was returned with equal
spirit by the soldiers, but without much effect upon either side.
Trees were barked, dogs bayed, the Indians yelled, the whites shouted,
squaws screamed, a prodigious noise was maintained for about fifteen
minutes, when it was reported to Calvin that Kenton's party had been
overpowered, and w^as in full retreat. It was not necessary to give
orders for a similar movement on the part of the upper division.
Soon there was a wild scramble for the horses and the battle was
ended with two killetl on the part of the whites — Barr and
Mclntire."

A remarkable thing occurred at this battle that is worthy of recog-
nition and place among the strange happenings of human life. A
brother of Captain Ward was in the Indian camp at the time of this
night attack. He had been taken from his home by the Indians when
he was but three years old, had been adopted into the Shawanee tribe,
and married an Indian woman and raised a family of children.
Captain Ward, while standing near the camp a few moments before
the fighting began, an Indian girl apparently about fifteen years of
age attracted his attention. She seemed alarmed about something,
and stood looking, as he thought, directly toward him. He raised



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FRONTIER ADVENTURES, 45

his gim and was about to fire, when her open bosom made knowm her
sex and her exceeding light color led him to believe that she was not
an Indian. *'IIe afterward ascertained that she was his brother's
child."

There has been some dispute about the exact location of this battle
ground, but the proof seems to point with unerring certainty to the
place within the present bounds of Highland county. Human bones
were found upon this spot, by the first settlers in that locality.
Trees were bullet-scarred ; an Indian tomahawk was found, and every
indication pointed to that place as the scene of this early struggle, in
the unbroken forest of Highland.

One of the early Indian spies and hunters of Kentucky was John
MclJ^ary, of Shelby county. He had served under Shelby, Kenton,



Online LibraryA. E. Hough J. W. KliseThe county of Highland: a history of Highland County, Ohio, from the ... → online text (page 4 of 63)