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      227 It was a false and fatal security. Through snow and ice and storm, Hertel and his band were moving on their prey. On the night of the twenty-seventh of March, they lay hidden in the forest that bordered the farms and clearings of Salmon Falls. Their scouts reconnoitred the place, and found a fortified house with two stockade forts, built as a refuge for the settlers in case of alarm. Towards daybreak, Hertel, dividing his followers into three parties, made a sudden and simultaneous attack. The settlers, unconscious of danger, were in their beds. No watch was kept even in the so-called forts; and, when the French and Indians burst in, there was no time for their few tenants to gather for defence. The surprise was complete; and, after a short struggle, the assailants were successful at every point. They next turned upon the scattered farms of the neighborhood, burned houses, barns, and cattle, and laid the entire settlement in ashes. About thirty persons of both sexes and all ages were tomahawked or shot; and fifty-four, chiefly women and children, were made prisoners. Two Indian scouts now brought word that a party of English was advancing to the scene of havoc from Piscataqua, or Portsmouth, not many miles distant. Hertel called his men together, and began his retreat. The pursuers, a hundred and forty in number, overtook him about sunset at Wooster River, where the swollen stream was crossed by a narrow bridge. Hertel and his followers made a stand on the farther bank, killed and wounded a number of the English 228 as they attempted to cross, kept up a brisk fire on the rest, held them in check till night, and then continued their retreat. The prisoners, or some of them, were given to the Indians, who tortured one or more of the men, and killed and tormented children and infants with a cruelty not always equalled by their heathen countrymen. [15]The war now ran like wildfire through the settlements of Maine and New Hampshire. Sixteen fortified houses, with or without defenders, are said to have fallen into the hands of the enemy; and the extensive district then called the county of Cornwall was turned to desolation. Massachusetts and Plymouth sent hasty levies of raw men, ill-armed and ill-officered, to the scene of action. At Casco Bay, they met a large body of Indians, whom they routed after a desultory fight of six hours; and then, as the approaching winter seemed to promise a respite from attack, most of them were withdrawn and disbanded.

      Charlevoix thinks that Frontenac was not displeased at this bitter arraignment of his predecessor's administration. At the same time, his position was very embarrassing. He had no men 203 to spare; but such was the necessity of saving Michillimackinac, and breaking off the treaty with the Senecas, that when spring opened he sent Captain Louvigny with a hundred and forty-three Canadians and six Indians to reinforce the post and replace its commander, La Durantaye. Two other officers with an additional force were ordered to accompany him through the most dangerous part of the journey. With them went Nicolas Perrot, bearing a message from the count to his rebellious children of Michillimackinac. The following was the pith of this characteristic document:somebody take an interest in me after all these years makes me


      [829] Vaudreuil aux Capitaines de Milice, 16 Avril, 1760. I am indebted to Abb H. R. Casgrain for a copy of this letter.

      La Galissonire ? English Encroachment ? Mission of Cloron ? The Great West ? Its European Claimants ? Its Indian Population ? English Fur-Traders ? Cloron on the Alleghany ? His Reception ? His Difficulties ? Descent of the Ohio ? Covert Hostility ? Ascent of the Miami ? La Demoiselle ? Dark Prospects for France ? Christopher Gist ? George Croghan ? Their Western Mission ? Pickawillany ? English Ascendency ? English Dissension and Rivalry ? The Key of the Great West.[840] Murray to Pitt, 24 Aug. 1760.


      V1 Hendrick, came to New York with a deputation of the tribe to complain of their wrongs; and finding no redress, went off in anger, declaring that the covenant chain was broken. [174] The authorities in alarm called William Johnson to their aid. He succeeded in soothing the exasperated chief, and then proceeded to the confederate council at Onondaga, where he found the assembled sachems full of anxieties and doubts. "We don't know what you Christians, English and French, intend," said one of their orators. "We are so hemmed in by you both that we have hardly a hunting-place left. In a little while, if we find a bear in a tree, there will immediately appear an owner of the land to claim the property and hinder us from killing it, by which we live. We are so perplexed between you that we hardly know what to say or think." [175] No man had such power over the Five Nations as Johnson. His dealings with them were at once honest, downright, and sympathetic. They loved and trusted him as much as they detested the Indian commissioners at Albany, whom the province of New York had charged with their affairs, and who, being traders, grossly abused their office.


      "I suppose so," said Dr. Hance with a grim chuckle.Major Eyre and his soldiers, in their wilderness exile by the borders of Lake George, whiled the winter away with few other excitements than the 441


      [202] "As he used to curse and Damm Governor Vetch and all his friends, he is now served himself in the same manner."Adams to Steele, 24 January, 1715.