CHIEF BULL, King of the Delawares, Many Descendants Living in the Monongahela Valley

SOURCE: Now & Long Ago Times, Vol. III, Is. 12 (reprinted in HCPD Journal- pg. 283-4)

He was known as 'Capt. Bull' also 'Honest John' and 'Brother Gideon'. He was son of the great Teedyuscung, King of the Delawares. Teedyuscung was murdered April 6, 1763 as lay drunk by having his house at Wyoming Pa burned around him. Bull inherited his father's place among the Delawares. (A monument to Teedyuscung stands in Fairmont Park, Philadelphia). Bull believed white men murdered his father; to avenge the old chief's death, he led a band of warriors on several great raids in PA & NY, during which he & his warriors murdered & mutilated more than 50 white settlers, men, women & children, mostly children (see Sipe's 'Indian Wars of PA pgs. 459-61), Miner's History of Wyoming & Egle's History of PA and the 'Frontier Forts of PA, Vol 1, pgs. 173-74.

Bull & his band were finally arrested near Kanestio, NY & later were given the choice of being hanged for their crimes or removing themselves & families westward to the Alleghany Mountains. Sipe tells us that Bull & his band of murdering numbered 135 Delawares from the Ohio Valley, & informs that Bull prior to his father's death, had lived in the Ohio Valley for 10 years. arriving here in 1753.

A few weeks after his release from prison in NY, Capt. Bull & about 50 members of his family (relatives) turned up at Frederick Ice's settlement on Cheat River, near present Morgantown, Wva. Here they remained for a few weeks, then went up the Monongahela & into camp at now Fairmont. The following Spring they moved again, this time settling near present Bulltown, WV named for Capt. Bull. Here by the Little Kanawha River they erected 20 cabins & a council house on the site of Chief Bull's old camp. (Note: In 1970-71, this writer received certain information from descendants of Adam FLESHER, 1760-1854, John MAHON 1769-1872- died age 103 at Pittsburg-, David MORGAN, Charles HARRIS & others that Chief Bull kept a hunting camp near present Bulltown, WVa for about 20 years, until 1772, when he & his people, about 100 men, women & children, went south & settled on the lower Mississippi where Bull died.

(Chief Bull's removal with his people from the Little Kanawha River has been established by DRAPER- James Notes, the Simon Kenton materials, Draper's Mss microfilm, WVa University. "The Delawares had a town on the little Kanawha, which Simon Kenton often visited. They went to the White River, 18 miles from the Wabash, & when Gen. Hamiliton was taken, they broke off & went to the Mississippi."- see Kenton materials, Drapers Mss.


A.S. Withers, in his 'Border Warfare" pgs. 136-37, pub in Clarksburg, then VA, in 1831, did not know that Bull & his people moved from Bulltown to near Wabash River in May 1772 as Simon Kenton & others personally acquainted with these Indians have told us. He, Withers, thought that 5 white men might have murdered Bull & the entire Indian population of Bulltown (not less than 100 persons); 'butchered them all, men women & children & threw their corpses into the Little Kanawha River....? He was not certain about this being true, though, for he says (Border Warfare. pgs. 136-37.

There was at that time (1772) an Indian town on the Little Kanawha called Bulltown, inhabited by 5 families, who were in habits of social & friendly intercourse with the whites on Buckhannon & Hacker's Creek; frequently visiting & hunting with them. There was likewise residing on the Gauley river the family of a German by the name of STROUD. In the summer of that year, Mr. STROUD, being from his home, his family were all murdered, his house plundered, & his cattle driven off. The trail made by these leading in the direction of Bulltown, induced the supposition that the Indians of that town had been the authors of the outrage & caused several to resolve or avenging it upon them.

A party of 5 men, 2 of whom were William WHITE & William HACKER, who had been concerned in previous murders (murders of whites), expressed a desire to proceed immediately to Bulltown. The remonstrance of the settlement generally could not operate to effect a change in that determination. They went; & on their return, circumstances justified the belief that the pre-apprehension of those who knew the temper & feelings of WHITE & HACKER had been well founded; & that there had been some fighting between them & the Indians. And notwithstanding that they denied ever having seen an Indian during their absence, yet it was the prevailing opinion, that they had destoyed all the men. women & children at Bulltown, & threw their bodies into the river. Indeed one of the party is said to have inadvertently used expressions confirmatory of this opinion; and to have then justified the deed by saying that the clothes & other things known to have belonged to STROUD's family was requited on them. The village was soon after visited & found to entirely desolated & nothing being ever after heard of its former inhabitants there can remain no doubt but that the murder of STROUD's family was requited on them.

(Note: Withers did not know the names of three of the five men. His only reason for believing the tale was that as he says, ' circumstances justified the belief' and that inadvertent expressions confirmed the opinion. The fact that the accused men, as he says, denied ever having seen an Indian at Bulltown, seems to have meant little to him...It will be understood that Chief Bull moved from Bulltown in May 1772 & that the above tale by Withers was published in 1831, 59 years later.

In a footnote to this tale (Border Warfare.pgs. 136-37) historian R G Thwaites informs that " Bull & 5 families of his relatives settled in what the whites called Bulltown on the Little Kanawha. This was a salt spring about a mile & quarter below the present Bulltown, P.O. Braxton County, WVa. Capt. Bull was inoffensive & very friendly to his white neighbors."

Adam STROUD lived on the Elk River, a few miles south of the Indian Bulltown. The massacre of his family- wife, and 7 children- occured in June 1772, Shawnees were the murderers and not Bull's people.

Thwaites, a highly accredited historiain, ways nothing here about white men murdering Bull & his people. Mr. L V McWhorter, in anaccompanying footnote in reference to the same tale (Border Warfare- pg 137) informing Thwaites says " The names of 2 others of the accused five besides WHITE & HACKER, were Jesse HUGHES & John CUTRIGHT, both settlers on Hackers Creek." McWhorter doesn't name the 5th man but he condemns Jesse HUGHES as a kind of monster with these words (from Thwaites): "Hughes was a man of unbridled passions, so confirmed an Indian hater that no tribesman, however peaceful his record, was safe in his presence. Some of the most cruel acts on the frontier are by tradition attributed to this man. The massacre of the Bulltown Indians was accompianed by atrocities as repulsive as any reported by captives in Indian camps; of these there has been long traditions, but details were not fully known until revealed by CUTRIGHT upon his death bed in 1852, when he had reached the age of 105 years.

While HUGHES was a great scout & Indian trader, he never headed an expedition of this note. This is no doubt was because of his fierce temperment & bad reputation among his own countrymen. McWhorters description of Jesse HIGHES is difficult, if not impossible to believe. First, Jesse was but 21 years old when Bull & his people moved south from Bulltown in May 1772. Second, as McWhorter tells us, Jesse was an Indian trader until 2 years after Bull & his people left Bulltown, which shows that until 1774 he was frieindly toward the Indians & was trusted by them. The Indians did not trade with a known enemy or anyone they did not trust. Certain murders of settlers in 1774 set Jesse & his brother Elias against the Indians & not until then did these 2 begin to earn reputation as Indian fighters. In 1778 Indians murdered Thomas HUGHES, father of Jesse, in a cowardly, sneak attack. In 1787, a party of Indians & the white renegade, Leonard SCHOOLCRAFT took captive Jesse's daughter. The next year, Jesse was able to purchase his daughter's release. After that, his hatred for Indians seems to have grown into something of an obession.

Concerning Hughes' daughter, Withers (Border Warfare pg 380) says only that, " Hughes' daughter was ransomed by her father the next year, and is yet (1830) living in sight of the theatre of those savage enormities." (It is difficult to know exactly from evidence available, which of Jesse Hughes' daughters was taken captive by the Indians. He fathered 7, namely: Rachel, Martha, Sudna, Elizabeth, Lucinda, Nancy and Massie. Tradition names Martha wife of Jacob Bonnett as the girl who was carried off by the savages & ransomed by her father. Certain stories of the capture name other daughters.) McWhorter's statement that Jesse Hughes had a bad reputation among his own countrymen (Border Warfare- pg 137) is flatly refuted by the court records of Harrison County; order book number 1of these records shows that Jesse Hughes was twice nominated & chosen captain of the Harrison County milita; other records of this county reveal that he served in this office 4 times, more often than any other. The record ( order book 1) for May 17, 1786 reads: Jesse Hughes came into court & took the oath of allegiance and the oath of Capt. of Militia according to law.

McWhorters statement that John CUTRIGHT died in 1852 at the age of 105 is incorrect. Bible record & Cutright's application for a RW pension & records established in VA & in Washington D.C. show that John Cutright was born in 1754 & died March 8, 1850, aged 95; he would have been 96 in August. He was a son of John Cutright & was born in Hampshire County. He was 17 years old when Bull & his people are said to have been massacred at Bulltown. His father claimed 400 acres of land in Monongahela (now Upshur County) in 1770 & is said to have settled here the same year. In 1782, John Cutright Sr.'s tax returns show there were 7 persons in his family. Wight of John Cutright Jr's descendants beginning in 1895 have denied that he ever confessed to taking part in the so-called Bulltown massacre of Chief Bull & his people.


Certain Chief Bull's descendants provided statements that their ancestor, Chief Bull, son of King of Delawares, Teedyuscung, died in the 1790's near old Fort Rosalie on the Mississippi where he lies buried. Relatives of James LAMBERT, settled in Jefferson County, Missouri before 1790 know of their descent from Chief Bull, through two of the Chief's daughters who married men by the name of LAMBERT. With the help of these Missouri descendants this writer was able to locate others of the same descent; members of the: NELSON family of Pendleton Co. WVa, members of the CRITES, FREDERICK, YEAGER, SLOAN, LAMBERT, FISHER, KENNEDY and other families of the Monongahela Valley & elsewhere in WVa. These many people alive are proof that Bull & his families were not massacred at Bulltown in present Braxton Co. WV but rather as Draper truthfully states, " went to the White river, 18 miles from the Wabash, & when Gen. Hamilton was taken they broke off & went to the Mississippi."

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