THE WINTER EXPEDITION OF MAJOR WALDERNE TO THE
In following the career of Major Walderne, it will be necessary to pass over a detailed account of affairs at the Eastward, in which, however, he bore no small part, being magistrate as well as military commander of this quarter of the colony. All the Eastern settlements were broken up, and the people who were neither killed nor made captive fled to the Westward towns for safety. Desolation lay over all, from Pemaquid as far as Wells. Capt. Hathorne's forces availed but little except to keep the Indians from any general gathering and organized attack. Small parties of the enemy were scattered along the frontiers, ready to fall upon any exposed settlement. The alarms, attacks and useless pursuits were many; till at last, about the middle of October, the celebrated "Mog," or "Mugg," came in to Major Walderne and announced himself as empowered to negotiate peace with the English on behalf of "Madockawando and Cheberrina, Sachems of Penobscot." Mog came to Boston under safe conduct from the governor, and between Nov. 6th and 13th a treaty was concluded between the colony and the Eastward Indians, not including the "Ammoscoggins" and "Pequakets." During this time Capt. Hathorne, upon information received of Mog, marched his troops up to Ossipee, expecting to find there a large body ofIndians and English captives, but found nothing but the empty fort, which they burnt, and returned to Berwick on November 9th.
Upon the issue of the treaty the Council sent vessels to the Penobscot with Mog, held as voluntary hostage, to act as agent and interpreter. Madockawando was found and confirmed the treaty made with Mog, and delivered the few prisoners which he held. Mog himself was permitted to go up into the woods to another plantation to persuade other Indians to join in the treaty, and to bring in some captives which they held; but not returning, they supposed he was either killed or detained as prisoner by the Indians, as he told them when he left them might be the result. They waited more than a week, and then came home, arriving at Boston December 25th, 1676.
Nothing more was heard of the captives at the Eastward or of Mog until January 5th, when one Francis Card, a captive, escaped, and made his way to Blackpoint and thence to Boston, where he made an interesting statement of the condition of things at the Eastward; told the story of his escape, stated the location and strength of the enemy, putting their entire fighting force at not above one hundred and fifty fighting men; he described the country and explained the best places to land a force, and urged that an expedition be sent at once before they removed higher up the river. The details of all the matters referred to above are to be given in another chapter. The statement made by Card, and especially his implication of Mog as a "Rogue" who came back among the Indians, and laughed at the English and their "kinde Entertainment," and saying he had found a way to burn Boston, seems to have renewed the determination of the Council to send an expedition immediately to attempt the recovery of their forts and the captive English. Other things also moved them, such as the discovery that the Narraganset Indians were abroad in these Eastward parts, three being captured by Major Walderne's Indians in the woods near Dover; and when several of the chief men about Portsmouth, etc., came to Boston advising the expedition, it was determined, and Major Walderne was made commander-in-chief.
The expedition consisted of two companies of sixty men from Boston and Salem; the first, sixty Natick Indians under Capt. Samuel Hunting; the second, sixty men under Lieut. Thomas Fiske of Wenham, whose commission for this service is preserved in the Massachusetts Archives, vol. 69, p. 106, and is dated February 5th, 1676. These sailed from Salem the first week in February, directly to Blackpoint, where Major Walderne met them with the forces raised by him and Capt. Frost in their parts. The Council gave Major Walderne instruction and commission as follows:
Instructions for Major Rich. Walderne
You shal repaire to Blacke point wth the 60 souldiers under capt. frost that you are authorized by ye Council to raise in Dover Portsmouth & yorkshire by ye 8 of febr where you are to take under your command the other forces from Boston & Salem under the command of Capt. Hunting & Leiftenant Fiske & other sea officers, from whence wth all expedition wth the advice of your commanders you shall advance towards the enemy at Kinnebeck or elsewhere, & according to the proposed designe, endeavour wth all silence & secresy to surprize them in their quarters wherein if it please God to succeed you, you shall do your utmost endeavour to save and secure the English prisoners. If you fail in this designe you shall assay by alle means in your power to disturb & destroy the enemy unless you have such overtures from them as may give some competent assurance that an honorable and safe peace may be concluded with them wherein you must avoyd all trifling & delayes & wth all possible speed make despatch of the affaire not trusting them without first delivery of all the Captives & vessels in their hands. If you should in conclusion find it necessary to leave a garrison in Kinnebeck, wee must leave it to your discretion. You shall use utmost expedition as winds & other advantages will permit lest ye season be lost and charges seem without profitt.
Praying God to be with you E. R. S.
The commission of Major Walderne:
J. L. G. Wth the Consent of the Council.
To Major Richard Walden.
Given in Boston 29 jan, 1676. Past E. R. S.
A journal account of this expedition was kept by Major Walderne, which Mr. Hubbard published in his History, from the original copy. Only an abstract can find place here.
On February 17th Major Walderne, with his whole command, sailed from Blackpoint for "Portland."1 On the east side of Cape Elizabeth one of their scouts, John Pain (former keeper of the Major's Pennacook truck-house, probably), appeared and reported the way clear of ice and Indians. They sailed across to "Mary Point" (Mare-point), arriving late at night. On the 18th the scouts found a birch canoe and the tracks of three Indians at "Muckquet" (Maquoit). Just as the companies were drawn up for the march, five canoes of Indians landed on an island opposite (probably Birch Island) and signalled for a parley; John Pain was sent, and they promised to bring the captives in the morning. Pain returned to the Indians, and "Simon," one of their leaders, came as a hostage in his place, who being questioned by the Major, declared that "Blind Will" stirred up late trouble; that they desired peace; that Squando was over at the island and would return the captives to Major Walderne. Squando was summoned, and replied that he would meet the Major if he would come half way alone in a canoe. Major Walderne refused, and the Indian promised to come in the morning. On the 19th they appeared in fourteen canoes. They landed upon a point where there was a house which was set on fire, and their scouts seemed to challenge our men to fight, upon which our troops marched against them as secretly as possible, when they fled, but Capt. Frost came upon their main body and had a sharp skirmish, killing and wounding several without any loss to his own. But anxious for the captives, the Major immediately hung out a flag of truce, which was immediately answered with one by them. John Pain and "Simon" therefore met and had an explanation half way between the lines. The house was fired accidentally, and their scouts did not mean to challenge ours, but hailed them according to their custom; said the captives were a great way off and had not yet arrived, but promised them next day. On the 20th they were weather-bound. On the 21st they sailed for Arrowsick. On the 22d they sailed up the river till stopped by the ice, and then landed their forces about twelve miles from Abbigadassit Fort, at which they arrived after a six-hours' march, and found the fort empty. On the 23d, at a council-of-war, it was decided that Major Walderne should sail with some part of his forces for the Penobscot, while the rest should remain and build a garrison. On the 24th the Major located a site opposite the lower end of Arrowsick Island, "at John Baker's house." Sunday, February 25th, they rested at this place. On the 26th Major Walderne with sixty men in two vessels sailed for Penobscot River. On the way two Indians signalled them from a canoe off "Gyobscot Point," and John Pain and Walt. Gendal were sent to speak with them, and were told that many Indians and some English captives were at Pemaquid. The whole force immediately (1 Falmouth, this probably the first mention as "Portland.") set sail and came to that place about four o'clock that same day, and were immediately hailed by Indians from "Mr. Gardner's Fort." John Pain was sent ashore to them and found the chief sagamore Mattahando with other sachems and "sundry sorts of Indians." The chief wished to speak with Capt. Davis, and was very desirous of peace, promising to deliver the captives then at Penobscot next morning. Capt. Davis with John Pain went ashore and stayed, while three sagamores went aboard to talk with Major Walderne, who soon after went ashore with six men unarmed, and was promised that the captives should be delivered next morning. On the 27th, after a long negotiation and a ransom of twelve skins to each captive, they delivered William Chadburne, John Whinnick (Winnock) and John Wormwood, these being all they would own that they had, or that it could be proved that they had. Some of the old sagamores seemed to be sincere, and declared that they were against the war, but could not rule their young men. Our officers, however, had little confidence in them, and in council decided to get all the captives and then to try to surprise their whole company. In pursuance of this design the Major with five others went ashore bearing a part of the ransom and carefully providing against surprise. While looking about to discover if the Indians were as wisely provided against Christian treachery as they against heathen treachery, he found a lance-head partly concealed under a board, seizing which he immediately advanced upon the Indians, charging them with treachery, swung his cap above his head as a signal to his men to come ashore, as was agreed, while those who were with the Major immediately rallied about to defend him from the Indians who advanced to seize him, and also to secure the goods which he had brought ashore. Some squaws seized a bundle of muskets that were hidden close by, and fled with them. Capt. Frost and Lieut. Nutter captured Megunnaway, "a notorious rogue," and carried him on board their vessel. As soon as the English got on shore they pursued the Indians to their canoes so closely that they were able to kill seven before they reached their boats, and as many more probably afterwards. Four were taken prisoners, of whom one was the sister of Madockawando. The old chief Mattahando was among the killed. Not more than twenty-five warriors were present in this engagement. The English secured a large amount of plunder, about a thousand pounds of dried beef with the rest. Megunnaway was next day executed by shooting, it being declared by witnesses that he was concerned in the killing of Thomas Bracket at Falmouth. On February 28th they sailed back to Kennebec, where Lieut. Fiske with a party of forty men secured some forty bushels of wheat, several cannon, some anchors, and a great quantity of boards from Arrowsick, a part of which they loaded upon their vessels. They killed two Indians upon Arrowsick Island, where they discovered the body of the lamented Capt. Lake, which was wonderfully preserved. This was brought home to Boston, where they arrived March 11th, 1676-7.
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