KING PHILIP'S WAR
Chapter 4, Part II
In Mather's "Indian War," strangely enough, no mention is made of Major Savage in relation to this first campaign. And Mr. Hubbard, the most reliable of all, relates in reference to this particular, that Major Savage came up "with other supplies" on the evening of June 29th. On the next day they moved forward into Mount Hope neck, "with a troop of horse in each wing;" encamping that night (June 30th) "in the open field" in a heavy rain. Next day (July 1st) they marched back to Swansey. That night Capt. Prentice's troop rode to Seekonk, and Major Savage appears to have remained at Swansey, July 2d, awaiting their return. On July 3d Henchman and Prentice searched the swamps between Swansey and Rehoboth, and Capt. Mosely "and Capt. Paige with his dragoons attending on Major Savage," marched back into Mount Hope. Mr. Church's account is extremely vague in reference to this campaign, especially in regard to the Massachusetts forces, making no mention of Maj. Savage by name. After a diligent search among published accounts and unpublished sources of information, I am unable to find any further reference giving light upon this point, except that the Journal has no credits under Major Savage for this campaign, save the following, viz.:
William Locke was the regular surgeon who went out with the army on June 26th (Mass. Archives, vol. 69, pages 58 and 60). This "Toten" was Dr. John Touton, a Huguenot, who at this time lived at Rehoboth, and his service may be inferred in part by the following order in Mass. Archives, vol. 67, page 221:
Order to Mr. John Toton to take "Peter Sympkins, Robert Smith and Isaac Ratt, to attend" him and "go for the reliefe of the wounded" . . . " and in case of their refusal you are reqired by the Constables to send them forthwith to Capt. Hudson who is required to send them to Boston." Dated July 22, 1675.
Mr. Joseph Dudley also went out with Major Savage, and received on Sept. 14th credit of 08 11 04, for salary as chaplain.
In regard to the two vessels, I find in Mass. Archives, vol. 67, page 211, the following papers:
Committee imployed for this present Expedition against the Indians, ordered to send the following provisions aboard the Sloope Swanne, whereof Samuel Woodbery is master to be sent for the supply of our forces, Vizt 2000 weight of Bisket, 40 barrells of pease in casks, 10 Barrells of Pork, 10 Kintalls of drye fish, 1 hogshead of Rumme, six jarrs of oyle, 4 barrells Raisins, 1 Barrell of sugar, 1 hogshead of salt, 1/4 cask of wine. Moreover you are to load aboard the Brigandine called the (???) [Joseph] whereof Edward Winslow is Master the like quantity of provisions as above expressed abating two barrells of Raisings & with two barrels of powder one in each vessell.
You are also to take bills of lading of these goods and to bee delivered to the Commissaries of the Army Theopholus Frary and John Moss or either of them.
Dated in Boston 28 June 1675
And on page 211, same date:
Instructions to Edward Winslow, Master of the Joseph.
You are hereby ordered forthwith as wind and weather will permit with your vessell to sail to Swansey or as near thereunto as you may and there deliver to Left Theophilus Frary and John Morse, Commissaries for this Colony and the forces (now) under the conduct of Major Thomas Savage all such provisions Armes &c now on board you for the use of the army.
Signed JOHN LEVERET, Govr.
It will be seen by this supply, that Massachuseetts then, as always since, showed a generous appreciation of the appetites of her soldiers. To the uninitiated the above bill of fare may not seem particularly inviting; but to any one who has been a soldier and knows the meaning of "pea-porridge-hot," the item "40 barrels of pease" will carry its own convictions. "Bisket, stripped fish and raisins," as marching rations, compare favorably, according to my experience, with the "hard-tack" and "salt-horse" furnished us by the U.S. Commissaries in 1861-5. I cannot testify to the "Rumme," as I belonged to a Maine regiment; but many times I have sat down by the camp-fire to a dipper of "peaporridge-hot" and a sop of bread, as to a royal feast.
In the line of the above information is this curious old paper in vol. 68, page 135. A "Committee's estimate of what Provisions &c will serve 500 souldiers one month." "Biskett 15m, Porke 20 barrills, Beefe 30 barrills (or some think only Pork and send salt), Bacon 10cwt. Cheese 10c: Stockins & Shooes 200 pr each, Shirts & Draws 100 of each, Wastcoats 50, Walletts 100, 300 small baggs for each man to carry nokake, 300 bush oates, 100 bush barley, 50 bush Indian corne parched and beaten to nokake, 6 bar. powder, 12cwt shott, Flints 20ct."
It appears from the letter above of July 5th, that these two vessels had sailed before that date. From Hull's Journal, pages 10 and 11, which I have restored from the Ledger, the following credits are obtained:
1 In Vol. II. Colonial History of New York, Holland Documents, I find by report of a council held at Fort William Hendrick, May 26, 1674, that "Capt. Cornelis Ewoutse arrived here this day with his Snow the Zehont, reports having captured three small New England prizes." One of these was the Sloop Swan, of which Samuel Woodbury was master, who appeared and declared that he lived at Swansey and was part owner of the Sloop, and that John Dixy's widow of Swansey owned the other part, and that he was captured "near Prudence Island." The vessel and cargo were confiscated by the New York Colony, but on June 29 following were released.
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