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Two Journals of Western Tours, by Charles Fred-
erick Post: one, to the neighborhood of Fort
DuQUESNE (July -September, 1758); the other, to
THE Ohio (October, 1758-jANUARY, 1759)

Source: Proud's History of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, 1798),
ii, appendix.


Christian Frederick Post, author of the following
journals, was a simple, uneducated missionary of the
Moravian Church. His chief qualifications for the
perilous journeys herein detailed, were his intimate
acquaintance with Indian life and character, the belief
of the tribesmen in his truthfulness and honesty, and his
own steadfast courage and trust in the protection of a
higher power. Born in Polish Prussia in 1710, Post early
came under the influence of the Moravians, whose re-
markable missionary movement was just beginning to

The first attempt of this church to christianize
the American Indians in Georgia having failed because
of Spanish hostility, the Moravian disciples removed
to Pennsylvania (1739), and were granted land on
which to establish their colony at Bethlehem. Thither
in 1742 came Post, eager to join in evangelizing the
Indians; for which purpose he was sent the following
year to assist Henry Ranch in his mission to the Mohe-
gans and Wampanoags. This mission had been estab-
lished about 1740, Count Zinzendorf, the great Moravian
bishop, having visited its site at Shekomeko (Pine Plains,
Dutchess County, New York) and baptized three Indians
as its first fruits. The work spread to the neighboring
Indian villages of Connecticut, and Post was assigned to
a circuit in Sharon Township, Litchfield County, con-
sisting of the villages of Pachgatgoch and Wechquad-
nach. Here, in his zeal for the service, he married a con-

178 Early Western Travels [Vol. i

verted Indian woman (1743), and endeared himself to all
the tribe.

But persecutions began to assail the humble brethren
and their converts; they were accused of being papists,
arrested and haled before local magistrates, by whom
they were no sooner released than a mob of those whose
gain in pampering to Indian vices was endangered by
Moravian success, set upon them and rendered their lives
and those of their new converts intolerable. Post, who
had been on a journey to the Iroquois country (1745),
was arrested at Albany and sent to New York, where he
was imprisoned for seven weeks on a trumped-up charge
of abetting Indian raids.

The situation made retreat necessary; therefore, in
1746, the Shekomeko and Connecticut settlements were
broken up, and the Christian Indians with their mission-
aries moved in detachments to Pennsylvania, where, after
kindly entertainment at Bethlehem, a town called Gnaden-
hiitten (huts of Grace), was built for them, at Weisport,
Carbon County. It was during their stay at Bethlehem
that Rachel, Post's Indian wife, died (1747), and there
two years later he married a Delaware convert, Agnes,
who lived only until 1751.

Meanwhile, Post was employed as missionary assistant,
going to Shamokin in 1747 to aid the missionary black-
smith established there, to clear and plant more ground.
Again in 1749, he revisited the scene of his early labors,
and helped David Bruce to re-establish a mission among
the remnant left at Pachgatgoch. Two years later he
was summoned to a more distant field on the dismal
shores of Labrador, where a company of four Moravian
brethren were sent to begin a mission to the Eskimos.
An untoward accident rendered this project futile; the

1758-1759] Post's 'Journals 179

major part of the crew of the vessel which had trans-
ported them having been lost, the captain impressed the
missionaries to carry his ship back to England.

Thereupon Post again sought his home in Pennsyl-
vania, dwelling principally at Bethlehem, until called
upon by the Pennsylvania authorities to assist in public
affairs. There is no certain information of his introduc-
tion to the managers of Indian matters in Pennsylvania;
but several Christian Indians from his flock had been
utilized as interpreters, and the Friendly Association of
Quakers, which was assuming so large a role in treating
with the natives, was well-inclined toward the Moravian

The first mention of Post in the public records is in
connection with a message which he was employed to
carry (June, 1758) in conjunction with Charles Thom-
son to Teedyuscung at Wyoming.^ On his return to
the settlements, he was immediately commissioned to
go back to Wyoming with a message from the Cherokee
auxiliaries, who had come to join the army of Forbes,
and whose presence caused consternation among Pennsyl-
vania's savage allies. With but five days' respite, Post
again started on a journey beset with perils on every side,
through the wilderness of Northern Pennsylvania.^ At
Teedyuscung' s cabin he met two Indians from the Ohio,
who declared that their tribes were sorry they had gone to
war against the English ; they had often wished that mes-
sengers from the government would come to them, for
then they should long before have abandoned war.

On the receipt of this important information, the council

' Pennsylvania Colonial Records, viii, p. 132; Pennsylvania Archives, iii, pp.

* Journal of this journey in Pennsylvania Colonial Records, viii, pp. 142-145.

i8o Early Western Travels [Vol. i

at Philadelphia debated to what use it might be put in
furthering the plans for Forbes' s advance. "Post was
desired to accompany the Indians, and he readily con-
sented to go."^

Antiquarians and historians have alike admired the
sublime courage of the man, and the heroic patriotism
which made him capable of advancing into the heart of a
hostile territory, into the very hands of a cruel and
treacherous foe. But aside from Post's supreme religious
faith, he had a shrewd knowledge of Indian customs, and
knew that in the character of an ambassador requested
by the Western tribes, his mission would be a source of
protection. Therefore, even under the very walls of Fort
Duquesne, he trusted not in vain to Indian good faith.

The results of this embassy were most gratifying. The
report of his mission coming during the important nego-
tiations at Easton, aided in securing the Indian neu-
trality which made the advance of Forbes so much
less hazardous than that of Braddock.

But the work was only begun; and to complete it
Post's renewed co-operation was necessary. This time
he was not to venture alone. Two militia officers,
Captain John Bull and Lieutenant William Hays, volun-
teered for the service,* and having joined Post at Reading,
all proceeded with Indian companions in their van, to
overtake the army and reach the Ohio in advance of
the column.

Their mission was not in time to save the Indian
ferocity at Grant's defeat; but it contributed to assure the
French that aid from the neighboring Indians was
dubious, and that in retreat lay their only safety.

^ Pennsylvania Colonial Records, viii, p. 147.
* Pennsylvania Archives, iii, pp. 556, 557.

1758-1759] Post' s "Journals 181

Through the simple narrative of Indian speeches and
replies, one feels the intensity of the strain: the French
captain "looked as pale as death;" "we hanged out the
English flag, in spite of the French, on which our pris-
oners folded their hands, in hopes that their redemption
was nigh." Then the news came "which gave us the
pleasure to hear, that the English had the field, and that
the French had demolished and burnt the place entirely
and went off."

Of Post's later life and its vicissitudes, we get but scat-
tered glimpses. For the two years succeeding these ad-
venturous journeys, he served the Pennsylvania authori-
ties as messenger and interpreter, at the same time beg-
ging to be allowed to go and preach to the newly-appeased
Indians on the Ohio. The last official act of Governor
Denny was the affixing of his signature to a passport for
Post, of whose loyalty, integrity and prudence he testi-
fies to have had good experience.^

This desire to begin a mission to the Western Indians
was consummated in 1761, when Post proceeded alone
to the Muskingum and built the first white man's
house within the present limits of Ohio. The follow-
ing spring, he applied to the Moravian brethren for
an assistant; whereupon John Heckewelder was assigned
to this service, and in his Narrative describes their
courteous reception by Bouquet at Fort Pitt, the rest-
less conditions among the Delawares and Shawnees,
and the warnings against the storm of fire and blood
which was so soon to break over the frontier. Hecke-
welder retreated in due season; Post barely saved himself
by a sudden flight.

* Pennsylvania Colonial Records, viii, pp. 341, 419, 463, 466, 469, 491; Penn
sylvania Archives, iii, pp. 581, 582, 689, 702, 703.

1 82 Early Western Travels [Vol. i

In 1764, the ecclesiastical authorities saw fit to send
this intrepid missionary to the Mosquito Coast, where he
stayed two years, making a second visit in 1767. Toward
the close of his life he retired from the Moravian sect,
and entered the Protestant Episcopal Church. His
death occurred at Germantown in 1785.

The journal of the first tour to the Ohio Indians (July
15 - September 22, 1758), was printed in the appendix to
An Enquiry into the Causes of the Alienation of the Dela-
ware and Shawanese Indians from the British Interest
(London, 1759; reprinted Philadelphia, 1867). This
book was published anonymously, but was known to be
the work of Charles Thomson, a prominent Philadelphia
Quaker, later secretary of the Continental Congress.
Thomson gives a brief preface to Post's journal, and the
matter in the notes thereof is evidently by his hand; it
is probable that the notes to the second journal are also
by him. The first journal was reprinted by Proud,
History of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, 1798), ii, appen-
dix, pp. 65-95, from which edition our reprint has been
made. Craig also published this in The Olden Titne, i,
pp. 99-125, following almost verbatim the edition of
Thomson and Proud. Rupp, Early History of West-
ern Pennsylvania (Pittsburg and Harrisburg, 1846))
appendix, pp. 75-98, gives the same journal. The Penn-
sylvania Archives, iii, pp. 520-544, also contains this
journal, evidently taken from the same manuscript, with
but slight variations in the spelling of proper names.

Heckewelder, Narrative of the Mission of the United
Brethren (Philadelphia, 1820), pp. 55, 56, says: "To
enumerate all the hardships, difficulties and dangers,
Frederick Post had been subjected to on these journies,
especially on the first, in the summer of the year 1758, is

1758-1759] Post's yournals 183

at this time both impossible and needless. Suffice it to
say, that what he intended the public should know, was
published in the year after, in England, under the title
of 'Christian Frederick Post's Journal from Philadel-
phia to the Ohio,' &c. His original manuscript jour-
nal, however, which had for some time been placed in
the hands of the writer of this narrative, was far more
interesting, and evinced that few men would be found
able to undergo the fatigues of a journey, bearing so
hard on the constitution, or a mind to sustain such trials
of adversity — at least not with that calmness with which
Mr. Post endured it. ' '

The diary of the second journey of Christian Frederick
Post to the Ohio, October 25, 1758- January 8, 1759,
was first printed in London, 1759, for J. Wilkie; see
Field, An Essay towards an Indian Bibliography (New
York, 1873), p. 315. Proud, History of Pennsylvania,
ii, appendix, pp. 96-132, also reprints Post's second jour-
nal, and from this our reprint is made. It appears also
in The Olden Time, i, pp. 144-177; and in Rupp, Early
History of Western Pennsylvania, appendix, pp. 99-126.
The extract from a journal in the Pennsylvania Archives,
iii, pp. 560-563, entitled ''Journal of Frederick Post
from Pittsburg, 1758," is in reality that of Croghan's
— see ante, p. 100. For an example of the form and
spelling of the original manuscripts of these journals
before they were rigorously edited, see letter of Post's in
Pennsylvania Archives, iii, pp. 742-744. The following
is a sample extract therefrom :

To his honnour da Governor of Pansylvanea :

Broder, I cam to Machochlaung, wa mane Indeans
luve, I cald dam all togader, and I told dam wat we bous
had agread on wan we sa one anoder last, and wat you

184 Early Western Travels [Vol. i

ar sorre for and have so mouts at hart, and dasayrt me
to mack it avere war noun avere war, and dasayrd dam
to be strong and sea dat your flasch and blod may be
rastord to you; now br'r, you know dat it is aur agrea-
mand, dat as soun as I hoar any ting, I geave yu daracktly
notys of, and as I am as jat closs bay you, so I sand daes
prasonars to you which da daleverat to me, and I geave
dam to Papunnahanck to dalever dam to you; br. I do
not sand daes poepel daun, da have had damself a long
dasayr to go daun to sea dar br. da Englesch, so I tot it
proper to sand dam along; I hop you will rajoys to sea
dam and be kaynd to dam, and allso to dam poepel dat
bryng dam daun ; wan I am f arder from you and I schall
meat wit som, I schall bryng dam maysalf daun wan I
com along; br. you know aur worck is grat, and will tack
a long taym befor we coan com back, I salud all da
schandel pepel, and dasayr you to be strong.
Ye 20 Day of May, 1760, rot at Machochloschung.

Ordinarily, the modern historical student very properly
deprecates any tampering with original manuscripts ; but
an examination of the foregoing inclines one not only to
forgive but to thank the early editors for having translated
Post's jargon into understandable English.

R. G. T.


July the 15th, 1758. — This day I received orders from
his honour, the Governor, to fet out on my intended
journey, and proceeded as far as German Town, where I
found all the Indians drunk.® Willamegicken returned
to Philadelphia, for a horfe, that was promifed him.^

1 6th. — This day I waited for the faid Willamegicken
till near noon, and when he came, being very drunk, he
could proceed no further, fo that I left him, and went to

1 7th. — I arrived at Bethlehem, and prepared for my

* All Indians are exceffive fond of rum, and will be drunk whenever they
can get it. — [Chaexes Thomson ?]

' Willamegicken (Wellemeghikink), known to the whites as James, was
a prominent brave of the Allegheny Delawares, who had been employed as a
messenger between them and the Susquehanna tribes of the same race. He
had agreed to accompany Post on this journey, for which the Pennsylvania
Council had voted to supply him with a horse. Pennsylvania Archives, iii, p.
415; Pennsylvania Colonial Records, viii, p. 148. — Ed.

* Bethlehem is a Moravian town built in 1741-42, after the retreat of these
people from Georgia. Count Zinzendorf organized the congregation at this
place, and named the settlement (1742). For the first twenty years a com-
munity system prevailed among the inhabitants, called the "Economy."
Portions of the buildings erected under that regime are still standing. See
"Moravians and their Festival," in Outlook, August i, 1903. In 1752, the
brethren built a large stone house for the accommodation of Indian visitors,
and those who escaped the massacre of 1755 were domiciled there when Post
passed through. — Ed.

1 86 Early Western Travels [Vol. i

i8th. — I read over both the laft treaties, that at
Eajton, and that at Philadelphia, and made myfelf
acquainted with the particulars of each.®

19th. — With much difficulty I perfuaded the Indians
to leave Bethlehem, and travelled this day no further
than Hayeses having a hard fhower of rain.

20th. — Arrived at fort Allen.^°

2ift. — I called my company together, to know if we
fhould proceed. They complained they were fick, and
muft reft that day. This day, I think, Teedyujcung^^

* These two treaties were made with Teedyuscung: the first at Easton in
July and August, 1757, whereby the neutraUty of the Susquehanna Indians and
the Six Nations was secured (Pennsylvania Colonial Records, vii, pp. 649-714);
the second at Philadelphia in April, 1758 (see Id., xdii, pp. 29-56, 87-97. — Ed.

*" After Braddock's defeat, the ravaging of the frontiers both west and north
of the settled portions of Pennsylvania became so serious that the colonial
government appointed a commission, headed by Frankhn, to take means to
protect the settlers, and defend the territory. Frankhn proceeded into North-
umberland County, and made arrangements to fortify the point on the Lehigh
where Weisport, Carbon County, now stands. But before the stockade was
completed a body of Indians fell upon and seriously defeated a party of mihtia
from the neighboring Irish settlements, led by Captain Hayes (January, 1756).
The works were pushed rapidly after this setback, and the fort was named in
honor of William Allen, chief-justice of the province. This post was garrisoned
until after Pontiac's War, and probably throughout the Revolution. See
Frankhn's Writings (New York, 1887), ii, pp. 449-454.- — Ed.

** Teedyuscung: one of the most famous of Delaware chiefs, was born in
Trenton about 1705. When nearly fifty years old, he was chosen chief of the
Susquehanna Delawares, and being shrewd and cunning played a game of
diplomacy between the Iroquois, the Ohio Indians, and the authorities of
Pennsylvania, by which he managed largely to enhance his own importance,
and to free the Delawares from their submission to the Six Nations. His
headquarters were in the Wyoming Valley, whence he descended to the Moravian
settlements, and even to Easton and Philadelphia, to secure supplies from the
Pennsylvania authorities. In 1756 a truce was patched up with this chief at
Easton, after he had bitterly complained of the "Walking Purchase" of 1737,
and the white settlements on the Juniata. His loyalty to the EngUsh was
doubtful and wavering, and his opposition to Post's journey was probably due
to fears that his own importance as a medium between the Ohio Indians and
the English would be chminished by the former's success. His cabin at Wyom-

1758] Post's 'Journals 187

laid many obftacles in my way, and was very much
againft my proceeding: he faid, he was afraid I fhould
never return; and that the Indians would kill me. About
dinner time two Indians arrived from Wyoming,^^ with
an account that Teedyujcung^s fon, Hans Jacob, was
returned, and brought news from the French and Alle-
gheny Indians. Teedyujcung then called a Council, and
propofed that I fhould only go to Wyoming, and return,
with the meffage his fon had brought, to Philadelphia.
I made anfwer, that it was too late, that he fhould have
propofed that in Philadelphia; for that the writings con-
taining my orders were fo drawn, as obliged me to go,
though I fhould lofe my life.

2 2d. — I defired my companions to prepare to fet out,
upon which Teedyujcung called them all together in the
fort, and protefted againft my going. His reafons were,
that he was afraid the Indians would kill me, or the
French get me; and if that fhould be the cafe he fhould
be very forry, and did not know what he fhould do. I

ing having treacherously been set on fire, during one of his drunken sleeps,
Teedyuscung was burned to death in 1763. The Iroquois, who were the guilty
party, threw the obloquy upon the Connecticut settlement, whereupon Teedyus-
cung's followers murdered all the band. — Ed.

^^ Wyoming Valley was the bone of contention between the Connecticut
and Pennsylvania colonies, each claiming that it was within their charter
limits. The Connecticut agents succeeded in securing an Indian title at the
Albany conference (1754); but their first settlement being effaced by an Indian
massacre (see preceding note), their next body of emigrants did not proceed
thither until 1769. Meanwhile, on the strength of the Indian purchase at
Fort Stanwix (1768) the Pennsylvanians had occupied the valley; and a border
warfare began, which lasted until the Revolution. The massacre of 1778, by
the Tories and British Indians, is a matter of general history.

The Indians of the valley were of many tribes — Oneidas, Delawares,
Shawnees, Munseys, Nanticokes, etc. The Moravian Christian Indians
settled at Wyoming in 1752. After the murder of Teedyuscung they fled, but
returned to found the town of Wyalusing (1765), where the missionary Zeis-
berger hved with them until their removal, three years later to the Ohio. — Ed.

I 8 8 Early Western Travels [Vol. i

gave for anfwer, ''that I did not know what to think of
their conduct. It is plain, faid I, that the French have a
public road^^ to your towns, yet you will not let your own
flefh and blood, the Englijh, come near them; which is
very hard: and if that be the cafe, the French muft be
your mafters." I added, that, if I died in the under-
taking, it would be as much for the Indians as the Eng-
lijh, and that I hoped my journey would be of this
advantage, that it would be the means of faving the lives
of many hundreds of the Indians : therefore, I was ref olved
to go forward, taking my life in my hand, as one ready to
part with it for their good. Immediately after I had
fpoken thus, three rofe up and offered to go with me the
neareft way; and we concluded to go through the inhabi-
tants, under the Blue mountains to fort Augujta, on
Sujquahanna; where we arrived the 25th."

It gave me great pain to obferve many plantations de-
ferted and laid wafte; and I could not but reflect on the
diftrefs, the poor owners muft be drove to, who once
lived in plenty; and I prayed the Lord to ref tore peace
and profperity to the diftreffed.

At fort Augujta we were entertained very kindly, had
our horfes fhod, and one being lame, we exchanged for

" An Indian expreffion meaning free admiffion. — [C. T. ?]

** Post, after leaving Fort Allen, passed through the present Carbon County,
crossed the headwaters of the Schuylkill, and traversed Northumberland County
to Fort Augusta. On the massacres in that region see Rupp, History of North-
umberland, etc., (Lancaster, 1847), pp. 100-116. Fort Augusta, at the forks
of the Susquehanna, was built in 1756, at the request of the Indians settled
there under the chieftainship of Shickalamy. It was not a mere stockade and
blockhouse, but a regular fortification, provided with cannon, and was com-
manded at first by Colonel Clapham, succeeded by Colonel James Burd. This
stronghold was garrisoned until after the Revolutionary War; but before that
time settlement had begun to spring up about the fort, and the town of Sunbury
was laid out in 1772. — Ed.

i7s8] Post's 'Journals 189

another. Here we received, by Indians from Diahogo,^^
the difagreeable news that our army was, as they faid,
entirely cut off at Ticonderoga,^° which difcouraged one
of my companions, Lappopetung^s fon, fo much, that he
would proceed no further. Shamokin Daniel here asked
me, if I thought he fhould be fatisfied for his trouble in
going with me. I told him every body, that did any
fervice for the province, I thought, would be paid.

27th. — They furnifhed us here with every neceffary
for our journey, and we fet out with good courage. After
we rode about ten miles, we were caught in a hard guft
of rain.

28th, — We came to Wekeeponall, where the road turns
off for Wyoming, and flept this night at Queenajhawakee."

29th. — We croffed the Sujquahanna over the Big
Ijland. My companions were now very fearful, and this
night went a great way out of the road, to fleep without
fire, but could not fleep for the mufquetoes and vermin.

30th & 31ft. — We were glad it was day, that we
might fet out. We got upon the mountains, and had
heavy rains all night. The heavens alone were our
covering, and we accepted of all that was poured down
from thence.

Augujt I ft. — We faw three hoops^^ on a bufh; to one

*^ An Indian fettlement towards the heads of Sufquahanna. — [C. T. ?]

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