Settlements of Scotch Highlanders in America
Parties bearing Highland names were
in America and the West Indies during the seventeenth century, none of
whom may have been born north of the Grampians. The records fail to give
us the details. It has been noted that on May
1635, Henri Donaldson left London for Virginia on the Plaine Joan, the
master of which was Richard Buckam. On May 28, 1635, Melaskus McKay was
transported from the same port and to the same place, on board the
Speedwell, Jo. Chappell, master. Dowgall Campbell and his wife Mary were
living in Barbadoes, September 1678, as was also Patric Campel, in August
1679. Malcum Fraser was physician on board the Betty, that carried
seventy-five "convicted rebells," one of whom was a woman, in 1685, sailed
from Port Weymouth for the Barbadoes, and there sold into slavery. Many
persons by name of Morgan also left various English ports during that
century, but as they occur in conjunction with that of Welsh names it is
probable they were from the same country.
LETTER OF DONALD MACPHERSON
Communication between the two
countries was difficult and uncertain, which would inevitably, in a short
time, stop friendly correspondence. More or less effort was made to keep
up old friendships. The friends in the New World did not leave behind them
their love for the Highlands, for home, for father and mother. The
following curious letter has been preserved from Donald MacPherson, a
young Highland lad, who had been sent
to Virginia with Captain Toline, and was born
near the house of Culloden where his father lived, and addressed to him.
It was written about 1727:
‘Portobago in Marilante,
2 June, 17—.
Teer Lofen Kynt Fater:
Dis is te lat ye ken, dat I am in
quid healt, plessed be Got for dat,
houpin te here de lyk frae yu, as I am yer
nane sin I wad a bine ill leart gin I had na latten yu ken tis, be kaptin
Rogirs skep dat geangs te Innernes, per cunnan I dinna ket sika anither
apertunti dis towmen agen. De skep dat I kam in was a lang tym
o de see cumin oure heir, but plissis pi Got
for a’ ting wi kepit our heels unco weel, pat Shonie Magwillivray dat hat
ay sair heet. Dere was saxty o’s a’ kame inte te quintry hel a lit an
lim an nane o’s a’ dyit pat Shonie
Magwillivray an an otter Ross lad dat kam oure wi’s an mai pi dem twa wad
a dyit gintey hed bitten at hame. Pi mi fait I kanna kamplin for kumin te
dis quintry, for mestir Nicols, Lort pliss hem, pat mi till a pra mestir,
dey ca him Shon Bayne, an hi lifes in Marylant in te rifer Potomak, he
nifer gart mi wark ony ting pat fat I lykit mi sel: de meast o a’ mi wark
is waterin a pra stennt hors, and pringin wyn an pread ut o de seller te
mi mestir’s tebil. Sin efer I kam til him I nefer wantit a pottle o petter
cle nor isi m a’ Shon Glass hous, for I ay set toun wi de pairns te dennir.
Mi mestir seys til mi, fan I kon speek lyk de fouk hier dat I sanna pe
pidden di nating pat gar his plackimors wurk, for de fyt fouk dinna ise te
wurk pat te first yeer aftir dey kum in te de quintry. Tey speck a’ lyk de
sogers in Inerness. Lofen fater, fan de sarvants hier he deen wi der
mestirs, dey grou unco rich, an its ne wonter for day mak a hantil o
tombako; and des sivites ‘anahels and de sheries an de pires grou in de
wuds wantin tyks apout dem. De Swynes te ducks and durkies geangs en de
wuds wantin mestirs. De tombako grous shust lyk de dockins en de bak o de
lairts yart an de skeps dey kum fra ilka place an bys dem an gies a hantel
o silder an gier for dem. Mi nane mestir kam til de quintry a sarfant an
weil I wot hi’s nou wort mony a susan punt. Fait ye mey pelive mi de
pirest plantir hire lifes amost as weil as de lairt o Collottin. Mai pi
fan mi tim is ut I wel kom hem an sic yu pat not for de fust nor de neest
yeir til I gater somtig 0 mi nane, for I fan I ha dun wi mi mestir, hi
maun gi mi a plantashon te set mi up, its de quistium hier in dis quintry;
an syn I houp te gar yu trink wyn insteat 0 tippeni in Innerness. I wis I
hat kum our hier twa or tri yiers seener nor I dit, syn I wad ha kum de
seener hame, pat Got bi tanket dat I kam sa seen as I dit. Gin yu koud sen
mi owr be ony o yur Innesness skeps, ony ting te mi, an it war as muckle
clays as mak a quelt it wad, mey pi, gar mi meistir tink te mere o mi.
It’s tru I ket clays eneu fe him bat oni ting fe yu wad luck weel an pony,
an ant plese Got gin I life, I sal pey yu pack agen. Lofen fater, de man
dis letir for mi is van Shames Macheyne, hi
lifes shust a myl fe mi, hi hes pin unko kyn te mi sin efer I kam te de
quintrie. Hi wes porn en Petic an kom our a sarfant fe Klesgou an hes peen
hes nane man twa yeirs, an has sax plockimors wurkin til hem alrety makin
tombako ilka tay. Heil win hem, shortly an a’ te geir dat he hes wun hier
an py a lerts kip at hem. Luck dat yu duina forket te vryt til mi ay, fan
yu ket ony occashion. Got Almichte plis yu Fater an a de leve o de hous,
for I hana forkoten nane o yu, nor dinna yu forket mi, for plise Got I sal
kum hem wi gier eneuch te di yu a’ an mi nane sel guid. I weit yu will be
veri vokie, fan yu sii yur nane sins fesh agen, for I heive leirt a hautle
hevens sin I sau yu an I am unco
A tis fe yur lofen an Opetient Sin,
Mackaferson neir te Lairt o Collottin’s hous,
neir Innerness en de Nort o
Skotlan.’ [Burt’s Letters from
the North of Scotland, Vol. I, p. 198.]
EMIGRATION DURING THE EIGHTEENTH
The emigration from the Highlands to
America was so pronounced that the Scottish papers, notably the
‘"Edinburgh Evening Courant," the "Caledonian Mercury," and the "Scots
Magazine," made frequent reference and bemoan its prevalence. It was even
felt in London, for the "Gentleman’s Magazine" was also forced to record
it. While all these details may not be of great interest, yet to
obtain a fair idea of this
movement, some record will be of
The "Scots Magazine." for September
1769, records that the ship
Molly sailed from Islay on August 21st of that year full of passengers to
settle in North Carolina: which was the third emigration from Argyle since
the close of tile late war." A subsequent issue of the same paper states
that fifty—four vessels full of emigrants from the Western Islands and
other parts of the Highlands sailed for North Carolina, between April and
July 1770, conveying twelve hundred emigrants. Early in 1771, according to
the "Scots Magazine," there were five hundred emigrants from Islay, and
the adjacent Islands, preparing to sail in the following summer for
America "under the conduct of a gentleman of wealth and merit whose
predecessors resided in Islay for
many centuries past." The paper farther notes that "there is a large
colony of the most wealthy and substantial people in Skye making ready to
follow the example of the Argathelians in going to the fertile and cheap
lands on the other side of the Atlanticocean. It is to be dreaded
that these migrations will prove hurtful to the mother country; and
therefore its friends ought to use every proper method to prevent them.
These Skye men to the number of three hundred and seventy, in, due time
left for America. The September issue states that "several of them are
people of property who intend making purchases of land in America. The
late great rise of the rents in the Western Islands of Scotland is said to
be the reason of this emigration.
The "Scots Magazine" states that the
ship Adventure sailed from Loch Erribol, Sunday August 17, 1772. with
upwards of two hundred emigrants from Sutherlandshire for North Carolina.
There were several emigrations from Sutherlandshire that year. In June
eight families arrived in Greenock, and two other contingents—one of one
hundred and the other of ninety souls—were making their way to the same
place en route to America. "The cause of this emigration they assign to be
want of the means of livelihood at home, through the opulent graziers
engrossing the frams, and turning them into pasture. Several contributions
have been made for these poor people in towns through which they passed.
During the year 1773, emigrants from
all parts of the Highlands sailed for America. The "Courant" of April 3,
1773, reports that "the unlucky spirit of emigration" had not diminished,
and that several of the inhabitants of Skye, Lewis, and other places were
preparing to emigrate to America during the coming summer "and seek for
the sustenance abroad which they allege they cannot find at home." In its
issue for July 3, 1773, the same paper states that eight hundred people
from Skye were then preparing to go to North Carolina and that they had
engaged a vessel at Greenock to carry them across the Atlantic. In the
issue the same paper for September 15th, same year, appears the gloomy
statement that the people of Badenoch and Lochaber were in "a most pitiful
situation for want of meal. They were reduced to live on blood which they
draw from their cattle by repeated bleedings. Need we wonder to hear of
emigrations from such a country." On September 1, 1773, according to the
"Courant. a ship sailed from Fort William for America with four hundred
and twenty—five men, women, and children, all from Knoydart Lochaber,
Appin, Mamore, and Fort William. "They were the finest set of fellows in
the Highlands. It is allowed they carried at least £6000 sterling in ready
cash with them : so that by this emigration the country is not only
deprived of its men, but likewise of its wealth. The extravagant rents
started by the landlords is the sole cause given for this spirit of
emigration which seems to be only in its infancy." On September 29,
1773, the "Courant," after stating that there were from eight to ten
vessels chartered to convey Highland emigrants during that season across
the Atlantic, adds : "Eight hundred and forty people sailed from Lewis in
July. Alarmed with this Lord Fortrose, their master, came down from London
about five weeks ago to treat with the remainder of his tenants. What are
the terms they asked of him, think you? ‘The land at the old rents; the
augmentation paid for three years backward to be refunded and his factor
to be immediately dismissed.’ " The "Courant" added that unless these
terms were conceded the island of Lewis would soon be an uninhabited
waste. Notwithstanding the visit of lord Fortrose, emigration went on. The
ship Neptune with one hundred and fifty emigrants from Lewis arrived in
New York on August 23, 1773: and, according to the "Scots Magazine."
between seven hundred and eight hundred emigrants sailed from Stornoway
for America on June 23rd, of the same year.
The "Courant" for September 25,
1773, in a communication from Dornoch, states that on the 16th of that
month there sailed from Dornoch Firth, the ship Nancy, with two hundred
and fifty emigrants from Sutherlandshire for New York. The freight
exceeded 650 guineas. In the previous year a ship from Sutherland-shire
paid a freight of 650 guineas.
In October 1773, three vessels with
seven hundred and seventy-five emigrants from Moray, Ross, Sutherland, and
Caithness, sailed from Stromness for America.
The "Courant" for November 10, 1773,
records that fifteen hundred people had left the county of Sutherland for
America within the two preceding years. The passage money cost £3 10s
each, and it was computed that on an average every emigrant brought £4
with him. "This amounts to £7500, which exceeds a year’s rent of the whole
The "Gentleman’s Magazine" for June
30, 1775, states that "four vessels, containing about seven hundred
emigrants, have sailed for America from Port Glasgow and Greenock, in the
course of the present month, most of them from the north Highlands." The
same journal for September 23rd. same year. says, "The ship Jupiter from
Dunstaffnage Bay, with two hundred emigrants on board, chiefly from
Argyleshire, set sail for North Carolina. They declare the oppressions of
their landlords are such that they can no longer submit to them."
The perils of the sea did not deter
them. Tales of suffering must have been heard in the glens. Some idea of
these sufferings and what the emigrants were sometimes called upon to
endure may be inferred from the following:
"In December (1773), a brig from
Dornock, in Scotland, arrived at New York, with about 200 passengers, and
lost about 100 on the passage." [Holmes’ Annals of America, Vol. II, p.
APPEAL TO THE HIGHLANDERS LATELY
ARRIVED FROM SCOTLAND.
Williamsburgh, November 23, 1775.
FRIENDS AND COUNTRYMEN :—A native of
the same island, and on the same side of the Tweed with yourselves, begs,
for a few moments, your serious attention. A regard for your happiness,
and the security of your posterity, are the only motives that could have
induced me to occupy your time by an epistolary exhortation. How far I may
fall short of the object I have thus in view, becomes me not to surmise.
The same claim, however, has he to praise (though, perhaps, never equally
rewarded) who endeavors to do good, as he who has the happiness to effect
his purpose. I hope, therefore, no views of acquiring popular fame, no
partial or circumstantial motives, will be attributed to me for this
attempt. If this, however, should be the case, I have the consolation to
know that I am not the first, of many thousands, who have been censured
I have been lately told that our
Provincial Congress have appointed a Committee to confer with you,
respecting the differences which at present subsist between Great Britain
and her American Colonies; that they wish to make you their friends, and
treat with you for that purpose; to convince you, by facts and
argumentation, that it is necessary that every inhabitant of this Colony
should concur in such measures as may, through the aid of a superintending
Providence, remove those evils under which this Continent is at present
The substance of the present
contest, as far as my abilities serve me to comprehend it, is, simply,
whether the Parliament of Great Britain shall have the liberty to take
away your property without your consent. It seems clear and obvious to me
that it is wrong and dangerous they should have such a power: and that if
they are able to carry this into execution, no man in this Country has any
property which he may safely call his own. Adding to the absurdity of a
people’s being taxed by a body of men at least three thousand miles
distant, we need only observe that their views and sentiments are opposite
to ours, their manners of living so different that nothing but confusion,
injustice, and oppression could possibly attend it. If ever we are justly
and righteously taxed, it must be by a set of men who, living amongst us,
have an interest in the soil, and who are amenable to us for all their
It was not to become slaves you
forsook your native shores. Nothing could have buoyed you up against the
prepossessions of nature and of custom, but a desire to fly from tyranny
and oppression. Here you found a Country with open arms ready to receive
you; no persecuting landlord to torment you; none of your property exacted
from you to support court favorites and dependants. Under these
circumstances, your virtue and your interest were equally securities for
the uprightness of your conduct; yet, independent of these motives,
inducements are not wanting to attach you to the cause of liberty. No
people are better qualified than you, to ascertain the value of freedom.
They only can know its intrinsick worth who have had the misery of being
deprived of it.
From the clemency of the English
Nation you have little to expect; from the King and his Ministers still
less. You and your forefathers have fatally experienced the malignant
barbarity of a despotick court. You cannot have forgot the wanton acts of
unparalleled cruelty committed during the reign of Charles II. Mercy and
justice were then strangers to your land, and your countrymen found but in
the dust a sanctuary from their distresses. The cries of age, and the
concessions of youth, were uttered but to be disregarded; and equally with
and without the formalities of law, were thousands of the innocent and
deserving ushered to an untimely grave. The cruel and unmerited usage
given to the Duke of Argyle, in that reign, cannot be justified or
excused. No language can paint the horrors of this transaction;
description falters on her way, and, lost in the labyrinth of sympathy and
wo, is unable to perform the duties of her function. This unhappy nobleman
had always professed himself an advocate for the Government under which he
lived, and a friend to the reigning monarch. Whenever he deviated from
these principles, it must have been owing to the strong impulses of honor,
and the regard he bore to the rights of his fellow-creatures. It were
endless, as well as shocking, (says an elegant writer,) to enumerate all
the instances of persecution, or, in other words, of absurd tyranny, which
at this time prevailed in Scotland. Even women were thought proper objects
on whom they might exercise their ferocious and wanton dispositions ; and
three of that sex, for refusing to sign some test drawn up by tools of
Administration, were devoted, without the solemnity of a trial, to a
lingering and painful death.’
I wish, for the sake of humanity in
general and the royal family in particular, that I could throw a veil over
the conduct of the Duke of Cumberland after the last rebellion. The
indiscrim mate punishments which he held out equally to the innocent and
the guilty, are facts of notoriety much to be lamented. The intention may
possibly, in some measure, excuse, though nothing can justify the
barbarity of the measure.
Let us, then, my countrymen, place
our chief dependence on our virtue, and, by opposing the standard of
despotism on its first appearance, secure ourselves against those acts in
which a contrary conduct will undoubtedly plunge us. I will venture to
say, that there is no American so unreasonable as even to wish you to take
the field against your friends from the other side of the Atlantick. All
they expect or desire from you is, to remain neutral, and to contribute
your proportion of the expenses of the war. This will be sufficient
testimony of your attachment to the cause they espouse. As you participate
of the blessings of the soil, it is but reasonable that you should bear a
proportionate part of the disadvantages attending it.
To the virtuous and deserving among
the Americans, nothing can be more disagreeable than national reflections;
they are, and must be, in the eyes of every judicious man, odious and
contemptible, and bespeak a narrowness of soul which the virtuous are
strangers to. Let not, then, any disrespectful epithets which the vulgar
and illiterate may throw out, prejudice you against them; and endeavor to
observe this general rule, dictated at least by humanity, ‘that he is a
good man who is engaged in a good cause.’
Your enemies have said you are
friends to absolute monarchy and despotism, and that you have offered
yourselves as tools in the hands of Administration, to rivet the chains
forging for your brethren in America. I hope and think my knowledge of you
authorizes the assertion that you are friends to liberty, and the natural
and avowed enemies of tyranny and usurpation. All of you, I doubt not,
came into the Country with a determined resolution of finishing here your
days nor dare I doubt but that, fired with the best and noblest species of
human emulation, you would wish to transmit to the rising generation that
best of all patrimonies, the legacy of freedom.
Private views, and offers of
immediate reward, can only operate on base and unmanly minds. That soul in
which the love of liberty ever dwelt must reject, with honest indignation,
every idea of preferment, founded on the ruins of a virtuous and deserving
people. I would have you look up to the Constitution of Britain as the
best and surest safeguard to your liberties. Whenever an attempt is made
to violate its fundamental principles, every effort becomes laudable which
may tend to preserve its natural purity and perfection.
The warmest advocates for
Administration have candor sufficient to admit that the people of Great
Britain have no right to tax America. If they have not, for what are they
contending? It will, perhaps, be answered, for the dignity of Government.
Happy would it be for those who advance this doctrine to consider, that
there is more real greatness and genuine magnanimity in acknowledging an
error, than in persisting in it. Miserable must that state lie, whose
rulers, rather than give up a little punctilio, would endanger the lives
of thousands of its subjects in a quarrel, the injustice and impropriety
of which is universally acknowledged. If the Americans wish for anything
more than is set forth in the address of the last Congress to the King and
people of Great Britain—if independence is their aim—by removing their
real grievances, their artificial ones (if any they should avow) will soon
appear, and with them will their cause be deserted by every friend to
limited monarchy, and by every well—wisher to the interests of America. I
have endeavored, in this uncultivated homespun essay, to avoid prolixity
as much as possibly I could. I have aimed at no flowers of speech, no
touches of rhetorick, which are too often made use of to amuse, and not to
instruct or persuade the understanding. I have no views but your good, and
the credit of the Country from whence you came.
In case Government should prevail,
and be able to tax America without the least show of representation, it
would be to me a painful reflection to think, that the children of the
land to which I owe my existence, should have been the cause of plunging
millions into perpetual bondage.
If we cannot be of service to the
cause, let us not be an injury to it. Let us view this Continent as a
country marked out by the great God of nature as a receptacle for
distress, and where the industrious and virtuous may range in the fields
of freedom, happy under their own fig trees, freed from a swarm of petty
tyrants, who disgrace countries the most polished and civilized, and who
more particularly infest that region from whence you came.
Scotius Americanus." [American
Archives, Fourth Series, Vol. Ill, p. 1649.]
INGRATITUDE OF THE HIGHLANDERS.
"Brigadier-General Donald McDonald
was in rebellion in the year 1745, against his lawful sovereign, and
headed many of the same clan and name, who are now his followers. These
emigrants, from the charity and benevolence of the Assembly of
North-Carolina, received large pecuniary contributions, and, to encourage
them in making their settlements, were exempted from the payment of taxes
for several years. It is a fact, that numbers of that ungrateful people,
who have been lately in arms, when they arrived in Carolina, were without
the necessaries of life—their passage even paid by the charitable
contributions of the inhabitants. They have since, under every
encouragement that the Province of North-Carolina could afford them,
acquired fortunes very rapidly, and thus they requite their
WERE THE HIGHLANDERS FAITHFUL TO
THEIR OATH TAKEN BY THE AMERICANS?
General David Stewart, the faithful
and admiring historian of the Highlanders, makes the following strange
statements that need correction, especially in the view that the
Highlander had a very high regard for his oath: After the battle of
Guilford Court House "the British retired southward in the direction of
Cross Creek, the Americans following close in the rear; but nothing of
consequence occurred. Cross Creek, a settlement of emigrant Highlanders,
had been remarkable for its loyalty from the commencement of the war, and
they now offered to bring 1,500 men into the field, to be commanded by
officers from the line, to find clothing and subsistence for themselves,
and to perform all duties whether in front, flanks, or rear; and they
required nothing but arms and ammunition. This very reasonable offer was
not received, but a proposition was made to form them into what was called
a provincial corps of the line. This was declined by the emigrant
Highlanders, and after a negotiation of twelve days, they retired to their
settlements, and the army marched for Wilmington, where they expected to
find supplies, of which they now stood in great need.
There was among these settlers a
gentleman of the name of Macneil, who had been an officer in the Seven
Years’ War. He joined the army with several followers, but soon took his
leave, having been rather sharply reprimanded for his treatment of a
republican family. He was a man of tall stature, and commanding aspect,
and moved, when he walked among his followers, with all the dignity of a
chieftain of old. Retaining his loyalty, although offended with the
reprimand, he offered to surprise the republican garrison, the governor,
and council, assembled at Willisborough. He had three hundred followers,
one-half of them old country Highlanders, the other half born in America,
and the offspring of Highlanders. The enterprise was conducted with
address, and the governor, council, and garrison, were secured without
bloodshed, and immediately marched off for Wilmington, Macneil and his
party travelling by night, and concealing themselves in swamps and woods
by day. However, the country was alarmed, and a hostile force collected.
He proceeded in zig-zag directions, for he had a perfect knowledge of the
country, but without any provisions except what chance threw in his way.
When he had advanced two-thirds of the route, he found the enemy occupying
a pass which he must open by the sword, or perish in the swamps for want
of food. At this time he had more prisoners to guard than followers. ‘He
did not secure his prisoners by putting them to death;’ but, leaving them
under a guard of half his force on whom he could least depend, he charged
with the others sword in hand through the pass, and cleared it of the
enemy, but was unfortunately killed from too great ardor in the pursuit.
The enemy being dispersed, the party continued their march disconsolate
for the loss of their leader; but their opponents again assembled in
force, and the party were obliged to take refuge in the swamps, still
retaining their prisoners. The British commander at Wilmington, hearing of
Macneil’s enterprise, marched out to his support, and kept firing cannon,
in expectation the report would reach them in the swamps. The party heard
the reports, and knowing that the Americans had no artillery, they
ventured out of the swamps towards the quarter whence they heard the guns,
and meeting with Major (afterwards Sir James) Craig, sent out to support
them, they delivered over their prisoners half famished with hunger, and
lodged them safely in Wilmington. Such partizans as these are invaluable
in active warfare." [Sketches of the Highlanders, Vol. 11, p. 119.]
Dr. James Browne, who follows
Stewart very closely, gives the first paragraph of the above quotation,
but makes no reference to the exploit of Macneil. Keltie who copies almost
literally from Dr. Drowne, also gives the first paragraph, but no
reference to the second.
General Stewart gives no clue as to
the source of his information. If the number of Highlanders reported to
have offered their services under such favorable conditions was true, lord
Cornwallis was not in a position to refuse. He had been and still was on a
very fatiguing campaign. His arm was not only worn down but was greatly
decimated by the fatigues of a long and harrassing march, and the results
of two pitched battles. In his letter to Sir Henry Clinton, already
quoted, not a word of this splendid relief is intimated. From lord
Cornwallis’ statement he must have made scarcely a stop at Cross Creek, in
his flight from Guilford Court House to Wilmington. He says that at Cross
Creek "there was not four days’ forage within twenty miles" that he
"determined to move immediately to Wilmington," and that "the Highlanders
have not had so much time as the people of the upper country, to prove the
sincerity of their friendship." This would amount to positive proof that
the Highlanders did not offer their services. The language of lord
Cornwallis to lord George Germain, under date of Wilmington, North
Carolina, April 18th, 1781, is even stronger: "The principal reasons for
undertaking the Winter’s Campaign were, the difficulty of a defensive War
in South Carolina, & the hopes that our friends in North Carolina, who
were said to be very numerous, would make good their promises of
assembling & taking an Active part with us, in endeavouring to
re-establish His Majesty’s Government. Our experience has shown that their
numbers are not so great as had been represented and that their friendship
was only passive; For we have received little assistance from them since
our arrival in the province, and altho’ I gave the
strongest & most publick assurances
that after refitting & depositing our Sick and Wounded,
I should return to the upper
above two hundred have been prevailed upon to follow us either as
Provincials or Militia. Colonel Tarleton, the principle officer under lord
Cornwallis, observes : "Notwithstanding the cruel persecution the
inhabitants of Cross creek had constantly endured for their partiality to
the British, they yet retained great zeal for the interest of the royal
army. All the flour and spirits in the neighborhood were collected and
conveyed to camp, and the wounded officers and soldiers were supplied with
many conveniences highly agreeable and refreshing to men in their
situation. After some expresses were dispatched to lord Rawdon, to
advertise him of the movements of the British and Americans, and some
wagons were loaded with provisions, earl Cornwallis resumed his march for
Wilmington." Not a word is said of the proposed reinforcement by the
Highlanders. Stedman, who was an officer under lord Cornwallis, and was
with him in the expedition, says : "Upon the arrival of the British
commander at Cross Creek, he found himself disappointed in all his
expectations: Provisions were scarce: Four days forage not to be procured
within twenty miles ; and the communication expected to be opened between
Cross Creek and Wilmington, by means of the river, was found to be
impracticable. the river itself being narrow, its banks high, and the
inhabitants, on both sides, for a considerable distance, inveterately
hostile. Nothing therefore now remained to be done but to proceed with the
army to Wilmington, in the vicinity of which it arrived on the seventh of
April. The settlers upon Cross Creek, although they had undergone a
variety of persecutions in consequence of their previous unfortunate
insurrections, still retained a warm attachment to their mother—country,
and during the short stay of the army amongst them, all the provisions and
spirits that could be collected within a convenient distance, were readily
brought in, and the sick and wounded plentifully supplied with useful and
comfortable refreshments." Again he says (page 348) : "Lord Cornwallis was
greatly disappointed in his expectations of being joined by the loyalists.
Some of them indeed came within the lines, but they only remained a few
days." Nothing however occurs concerning Highland enlistments or their
desire so to engage with the army. General Samuel Graham, then an officer
in Fraser’s Highlanders, in his "Memoirs," though speaking of the march to
Cross Creek, is silent about Highlanders offering their services. Nor is
it at all likely, that, in the sorry plight the British army reached Cross
Creek in, the Highlanders would unite, especially when the outlook was
gloomy, and the Americans were pressing on the rear.
As to the exploit of Macneil. beyond
all doubt, that is a confused statement of the capture of Governor Burke,
at Hillsboro, by the notorious Colonel David Fanning. This was in
September 1781. His report states, "We killed 15 of the rebels and wounded
20; and took upwards of 200 prisoners: amongst them was the
Governor, his Council. and part of the Continental Colonels, several
captains and subalterns, and 71 continental soldiers out of a church."
Colonel Fanning was a native of Wake County, North Carolina, and had no
special connection with the Highlanders; but among his followers were some
bearing Highland names. The majority of his followers, who were little
better than highway robbers, had gathered to his standard as the best
representative of the king in North Carolina, after the defeat at Moore’s
There is not and never has been a
Willisborough in North Carolina. There is a Williamsboro in Granville
county, but has never been the seat of government even for a few days.
Hillsboro, practically, was the capital in 1781.
The nearest to an organization of
Highlanders, after Moore’s Creek, was Hamilton’s Loyal North Carolina
regiment; but this was made up of refugees from over all the state.
It is a fact, according to both
history and tradition, that after the battle of Moore’s Creek, the
Highlanders as a race were quiet. The blow at Moore’s Creek taught them a
needed lesson, and as an organization gave no more trouble. Whatever
numbers, afterwards entered the British service, must have been small, and
of little consequence.
MARVELLOUS ESCAPE OF CAPTAIN
The following narration I find in
the "Celtic Magazine," vol. I. 1875-76, pp. 209-213 and 241-245. How much
of it is true I am unable to discover. Undoubtedly the writer, in some
parts, draws on his imagination. Unfortunately no particulars are given
concerning either the previous or subsequent life of Captain McArthur. We
are even deprived of the knowledge of his Christian name, and hence cannot
identify him with the same individual mentioned in the text.
Upon the defeat of the Highlanders
at Moore’s Creek, "Captain McArthur of the Highland Regiment of
Volunteers, was apprehended and committed to the county jail in the town
of Cross-Creek. But the gallant officer determined to make a death grasp
for effecting his escape; and happily for him the walls of his confinement
were not of stone and mortar. In his lonely prison, awaiting his fate, and
with horrid visions of death haunting him, he summons up his muscular
strength and courage, and with incredible exertion he broke through the
jail by night, and once more enjoyed the sweets of liberty. Having thus
made his escape he soon found his way to the fair partner of his joys and
sorrows. It needs hardly be said that her astonishment was only equalled
by her raptures of joy. She, in fact, became so overpowered with the
unexpected sight that she was for the moment quite overcome, and unable to
comply with the proposal of taking an immediate flight from the enemy’s
country. She soon, however, regains her sober senses, and is able to grasp
the reality of the situation, and fully prepared with mental nerve and
courage to face the scenes of hardship and fatigue which lay before them.
The thought of flight was, indeed, a hazardous one. The journey to the sea
board was far and dangerous roads were miserably constructed, and these,
for the most part, had to be avoided : unbroken forests, immense swamps,
and muddy creeks were almost impassable barriers: human habitations were
few and far between, and these few could scarcely be looked to as
hospitable asylums; enemies would be on the lookout for the capture of the
'Old Tory,’ for whose head a tempting reward had been offered; and withal,
the care of a tender infant lay heavy upon the parental hearts, and tended
to impede their flight. Having this sea of troubles looming before them,
the imminent dangers besetting their path, you can estimate the heroism of
a woman who was prepared to brave them all. But when you further bear in
mind that she had been bred in the ease and delicate refinements of a
lairdly circle at home, you can at once conceive the hardships to be
encountered vastly augmented, and the moral heroism necessary for such an
undertaking to be almost incredible, finding its parallel only in the life
of her famous countrywoman, the immortal ‘Flora.’ Still, life is dear, and
a desperate attempt must be made to preserve it—she is ready for any
proposal. So off they start at the dead hour of midnight, taking nothing
but the scantiest supply of provisions, of which our heroine must be the
bearer, while the hardy sire took his infant charge in his folded plaid
over one shoulder, with the indispensable musket slung over the other.
Thus equipped for the march, they trudge over the heavy sand, leaving the
scattered town of Cross—Creek behind in the distance, and soon find
themselves lost to all human vision in the midst of the dense forest.
There is not a moment to lose: and onward they speed under cover of night
for miles and miles. and for a time keeping the main road to the coast.
Daylight at length lightened their path, and bright sunrays are pouring
through the forest. But that which had lightened the path of the weary
fugitives had, at the same time, made wonderful disclosures behind. The
morning light had revealed to the astonished gaze of the keeper of the
prison the flight of his captive. The consternation among the officials is
easily imagined. A detachment of cavalry was speedily dispatched in
pursuit: a handsome reward was offered for the absconded rebel, and a most
barbarous punishment was in reserve for him in the event of his being
captured. With a knowledge of these facts, it will not be matter of
surprise that the straits and perplexities of a released captive had
already commenced. Who can fancy their terror when the noise of cavalry in
the distance admonished them that the enemy was already in hot pursuit,
and had taken the right scent. What could they do ! Whither could they fly
? They dart off the road in an instant and began a race. But alas, of what
use, for the tall pines of the forest could afford no shelter or
concealment before the could reach the spot. In their extremity they
change their course, running almost in the face of the foe. They rush into
the under brush covert of a gum pond which crossed the road close by, and
there, in terrible suspense, awaited their fate, up to the knees in water.
In a few moments the equestrians, in full gallop. are within a gunshot of
them. But on reaching the pond they slacken their speed, and all at once
came to a dead halt! Had they already discovered their prey? In an instant
their fears were relieved on this score. From their marshy lair they were
able, imperfectly, to espy the foe, and they saw that the cause of halting
was simply to water their panting steeds. They could also make out to hear
the enemy’s voice, and so far as they could gather, the subject was enough
to inspire them with terror, for the escaped prisoner was evidently the
exciting topic. Who could mistake the meaning of such detached prases and
epithets as these - 'Daring fellow,’ ‘Scotch dog, ‘British ship.’ and
‘Steel fix him.’ And who can realize the internal emotion of him whom they
immediately and unmistakably concerned ? But the fates being propitious,
the posse of cavalry resumed their course, first in a slow pace, and
afterwards in a lively canter, un— til they were out of sight and out of
This hair—breadth escape admonished
our hero that he must shift his course and avoid the usual route of
communication with the coast. The thought struck him, that he would direct
his course towards the Cape Fear river, which lay some ten miles to the
right ; feeling confident, at the same time, that his knowledge of the
water in early days could now be made available, if he could only find
something in the shape of a boat. And, besides, he saw to his dismay that
his fair partner in travel, however ardent in spirit, could not possibly
hold out under the hardships incident to the long journey at first
meditated. For the Cape Fear river then they set off; and after a
wearisome march, through swamp and marsh, brush and brier, to the great
detriment of their scanty wardrobe and danger of life and limb, they
reached the banks of that sluggish stream before the sun had set, foot
sore and dispirited, exhausted and downcast. But what is their chance of a
boat now? Alas, not even the tiniest craft could be seen. There is nothing
for it but to camp in the open air all night and try to refresh their
weary limbs and await to see what luck the following morn had in store.
Fortunately for them the climate was warm, too much so indeed, as they had
found, to their great discomfort, during the day that was now past. In
their present homeless situation, however, it was rather opportune; and
there was nothing to fear, unless from the effects of heavy dew, or the
expected invasion of snakes and mosquitoes. But for these there was a
counteracting remedy. The thick foliage of a stately tree afforded ample
protection from dew, while a blazing fire, struck from the musket flint,
defied the approach of any infesting vermin or crawling reptiles, and also
answered the needed purpose of setting to rights their hosiery department
which had suffered so much during the day. Here they are snug and cozy,
under the arching canopy, which nature had provided, and prepared to do
fair justice to the scanty viands and refreshments in their possession,
before betaking themselves to their nocturnal slumbers which nature so
much craved. But can we take leave of our pilgrims for the night without
taking a glance at the innocent babe as it lay upon the folded plaid in
blissful ignorance of the cares and anxieties which racked the parental
breast. The very thought of its sweet face and throbbing little heart as
it breathed in unconscious repose under the open canopy of heaven, was
enough to entwine a thousand new chords of affection around the heart of
its keepers, like the clasping ivy around the tree which gave them
shelter, and to nerve them anew, for its sake, for the rough and perilous
journey upon which they had entered. The fond mother imprints a kiss upon
its cheek, and moistens it with tears of mingled joy and grief, and
clasping it to her bosom is instantly absorbed in the sweet embrace of
Morpheus. The hardy sire, it was agreed, would keep the first watch and
take his rest in turn, the latter part of the night. He is now virtually
alone, in deep and pensive meditation. He surveys with tender solicitude
his precious charge, which was clearer to him than his own life, and for
whose sake he would risk ten lives. He paces the sward during the night
watches. He meditates his plans for the following day. He deliberates and
schemes how he can take advantage of the flowing sheet of water before
him, for the more easy conveyance of his precious belongings. The mode of
travel hitherto adopted, he saw, to be simply impossible. The delay
involved might be ruinous to his hopes. With these cogitations he sat
down, without bringing any plan to maturity. He gazed at the burning
embers as if in a reverie, and as he gazed he thought he had seen, either
by actual vision or by the second sight, in which he was a firm believer,
the form of a canoe with a single sable steersman coming to his rescue. He
felt tempted to communicate the vision to his sleeping partner : but,
thinking it unkind to disturb her slumbers, he desists from his
resolution, reclines on the ground, and without intending it, he falls
fast asleep. But imagine his astonishment and alarm when he came to
consciousness, to find that he had slept for three full hours without
interruption. He could hardly realize it, the interval seemed like all
instant. However, all was well ; his wife and babe were still enjoying
unbroken rest, and no foe had discovered their retreat; and withal, the
gladsome light of day is now breaking in around them and eclipsing the
glare of the smouldering embers. Up starts our hero much refreshed and
invigorated, and exulting in surprising buoyancy of spirit for running the
race of the new day now ushering in. He withdraws a gunshot from the camp;
and what does he descry in the grey dawn but, apparently, a small skiff
with a single rower crossing the river towards them, but a short distance
down the stream. The advancing light of day soon confirmed his hopes. He
at once started in the direction of the skiff, having armed himself with
his loaded musket, and resolved to get possession of it by fair means or
by foul. A few minutes brought him to the spot, and to his great
astonishment he found himself in the undisputed possession of the object
of his wishes, a tiny little canoe drawn up on the beach. In connection
with the nights vision he would have positively declared that there was
something supernatural in the affair, but having marked the bare
footprints of its late occupant on the muddy soil, and heard the rustling
of leaves in the distance, calling attention to the woolly head of its
owner getting out of sight through the bush, and making his way for a
neighboring plantation. He could explain the event upon strict natural
principles. The happy coincidence, however, filled him with emotions of
joy, in so readily securing the means of an earlier and more expeditious
transit. He retraces his steps and joins his little circle, and in joyous
ecstacy relates to his sympathetic spouse; just aroused from her long
slumbers, the tenor of his lucky adventure. There is now no time to lose.
The crimson rays of the rising sun peering through a dense morning
atmosphere and a dense forest, are reflected upon the surface of the
stream to which they are about to commit their fortune, and admonish them
to be off. They break their fast upon the remnants of the dry morsels with
which they last appeased their hunger. This dispatched, they hasten to the
beach, and speedily embark, seating themselves with the utmost caution in
the narrow hull, which good luck and Sambo had placed at their disposal,
and with less apprehension of danger from winds and waves than from the
angry billows of human passion. A push from the shore and the voyage is
fairly and auspiciously begun, the good lady seated in the prow in charge
of the tender object of her unremitting care, and giving it the shelter of
her parasol from the advancing rays of the sun, and the skilful Palinurus
himself squatted in the stern, with a small paddle in his hand, giving
alternate strokes, first to the right and then to the left, and thus, with
the aid of the slow current propelling his diminutive barque at the rate
of about six knots an hour, and enjoying the simultaneous pleasure of
paddling his own canoe.’ Onward they glide, smoothly and pleasantly, over
the unruffled water, the steersman taking occasional rests from his
monotonous strokes, while having the satisfaction of noting some progress
by the flow of the current. Thus, hours passed away without the occurrence
of anything worth noting, except the happy reflection that their memorable
encampment was left several leagues in the distance. But lo ! here is the
first interruption to their navigation! About the hour of noon a mastless
hull is seen in the distance. Their first impulse was fear, but this was
soon dispelled on discovering it to be a flat or 'pole boat,’ without sail
or rigging, used for the conveyance of merchandise to the head of
navigation, and propelled by long poles which the hardy craftsmen handled
with great dexterity. It was, in fact, the steamer of the day, creating
upon its arrival the same stir and bustle that is now caused by its more
agreeable and efficient substitute, the ‘Flora Macdonald.’ The sight of
this advancing craft, however, suggested the necessity of extreme caution,
and of getting out of its way for a time. The Highland royalist felt
greatly tempted to wait and hail the crew, whom he felt pretty sure to be
his own friendly countrymen, and who, like their sires, in the case of
prince Charlie, thirty years before, would scorn to betray their brother
Celt, even for the gold of Carolina. Still, like the royal outlaw in his
wanderings, he also deemed it more prudent to conceal his whereabouts even
from his most confidential friends. He at once quits the river, and thus
for a good while suspends his navigation. He takes special precaution to
secure his little transport by drawing it a considerable distance from the
water, a feat which required no great effort. The party stroll out of the
way, and up the rising beach, watching for a time the tardy movement of
the ‘flat.’ Tired of this they continue their slow ramble further into the
interior, in hopes, at the same time, of making some accidental discovery
by which to replenish their commissariat, which was quite empty, and made
their steps faint and feeble, for it was now considerably past noon. As
‘fortune favors the brave’ they did succeed in making a discovery. They
saw 'the opening’ of a small plantation in the forest, an event which, in
Carolina, is hailed with immense satisfaction by those who chance to lose
their way in the woods, as suggestive of kindness and hospitality. Nothing
short of such a treatment would be expected by our adventurers as a matter
of course, if they could only afford to throw themselves upon the
hospitality of settlers. In their situation, however, they must take their
bearings with anxious circumspection, and weigh the consequences of the
possibility of their falling into the hands of foes. But here, all of a
sudden, their path is intercepted by the actual presence of a formidable
foe. One of the pursuers? No, but one equally defiant. It is a huge
serpent of the ‘Whip snake’ species, which never gives way, but always
takes a bold and defiant stand. It took its stand about fifty yards ahead,
ready for battle, its head, and about a yard of its length, in semi-erect
posture, and displaying every sign of its proverbial enmity to Adam’s
race. It has no poison, but its mode of attack is still more horrible, by
throwing itself with electric speed in coils around its antagonist, tight
as the strongest cord, and lashing with a yard of its tail, till it puts
its combatant to death. Knowing its nature, the assailed levels his piece,
and in an instant leaves the assailant turning a thousand somersaults
until its strength is spent. and, is at last, wriggling on the ground.
The discharge of the musket was the
signal to those within hearing that somebody was about. It awakened to his
senses an old negro, the honest ‘Uncle Ned,’ and brought him to the edge
of the 'clearing.' in order to satisfy his curiosity, and to see if it was
‘old Massa’ making an unceremonious visit to the farm of which Ned was
virtually overseer. Our disconsolate party could not avoid an interview
even if they would. They summoned their courage and affected to feel at
ease. And truly they might, for Ned, like the class to which he belonged,
would never dream of asking impertinent questions of any respectable white
man, his known duty being to answer, not to ask, questions. Our weary
party invited themselves to Uncle Ned’s’ cabin, which stood in the edge of
the clearing close by, and turned out to be a tidy log cottage. The
presiding divinity, of its single apartment was our kind hostess, ‘Aunt
Lucy,’ Ned’s better half, who felt so highly charmed and flattered by the
visit of such distinguished guests that she scarcely knew what she was
saying or doing. She dropt her lighted pipe on the floor, hustled and
scraped and curtsied to the gentle lady over and over, and caressed the
beautiful little ‘Missie’ with emotions which bordered on questionable
kindness. This ovation over, our hungry guests began to think of the chief
object of their visit—getting something in the shape of warm luncheon—and
with this in view they eyed with covetous interest the large flock of fine
plump pullets about the door. There was fine material for a feast to begin
with. The hint was given to ‘Aunt Lucy,’ and when that aged dame became
conscious of the great honor thus to be conferred upon her, she at once
set to work in the culinary department with a dexterity and skill of art
which is incredible to those who are ignorant of the great speciality of
negresses. There was sudden havoc among the poultry, and fruit and
vegetables found their way from the corn field in abundant variety to the
large chimney place. Meanwhile the captain shouldered his piece and
brought, from an adjacent thicket, two large fox squirrels to add to the
variety of the feast, extorting from the faithful Ned the flattering
compliment b’ gollies, Boss, you is the best shot I ever see’d.’
Preparation is rapidly advancing, and so is the appetite of the longing
expectants. But such preparation was not the work of a moment, especially,
from the scantiness of Lucy’s cooking utensils. So the guests thought they
would withdraw for a time in order to relieve the busy cook of all
ceremony, and at the same time relieve themselves of the uncomfortable
reflection of three blazing fires in the chimney place. After partaking of
a few slices of a delicious water-melon, they retired to the shade of a
tree in the yard, and there enjoyed a most refreshing nap. In due course
the sumptuous meal is ready the small table is loaded with a most
substantial repast, the over plus finding a receptacle upon the board
floor of the apartment, which was covered with white sand. It is needless
to say that the guests discharged their duty with great gusto,
notwithstanding the absence of any condiments, save pepper and salt, in
their case hunger being the best sauce. Who but an epicure could grumble
at the repast before them? What better than stewed fowls and squirrels,
boiled rice, Indian hoe cake and yams smoking hot from the ashes,
squashes, pumpkin pies and apple dumpling, and all this followed by a
course of fruit, peaches and apples, musk and water-melons, all of a
flavor and size inconceivable by any but the inhabitants of the sunny
climes which brought them to maturity. Her ladyship could not help making
the contrast with a service of fruit upon an extra occasion in her home
circle, which cost several golden guineas, and yet was not to be compared
with that furnished for the merest trifle by these sable purveyors—so much
for the sun rays of the latitude. There was, however, the absence of any
beverage stronger than water, not even tea, a name which the humble
hostess scarcely comprehended. But a good substitute was readily
presented, in the form of strong coffee, without cream or sugar. It was
now drawing late in the afternoon, and our party refreshed and delighted
with their adventure, must begin to retrace their steps towards the canoe.
The reckoning was soon settled. A few shillings, the idex of the late
regime of George in the colony, more than satisfied all demands, and
surpassed all expectations. But the fair visitor was not content, without
leaving an additional, and more pleasant memento. She took a beautiful
gold ring, bearing the initials B. J. C., and placed it upon the swarthy
finger of ‘Aunt Lucy,’ with many thanks and blessings for her kindness, on
that eventful occasion. This kindly expression was heartily reciprocated
by the negress, and responded by a flood of tears from her eyes, and a
volley of blessings from her lips. The party bade a final adieu to their
entertainers, and they had to veto their pressing offer of escorting them
to the river. Off they went, leaving the aged couple gazing after them,
and lost in amazement as to who they could be, or whither they were going,
and all the more astonished that the mysterious visitors had supplied
themselves with such a load of the leavings of the repast.
The navigation was at length
resumed, and onward they glide as before, without the sight of anything to
obstruct their course. Their prosperous voyaging continued till about
midnight. for they resolved to continue their course during the whole
night, unless necessity compelled them to do otherwise. Long before this
hour, the mother and child resigned themselves to sleep, which was only
interrupted by occasional starts, while the indefatigable steersman
watched his charge, and plied his vocation with improving expertness. At
this hour again, in the dim light of the crescent moon, a second ‘pole
boat’ was discovered making towards them, but which they easily avoided by
rowing to the opposite side of the river, thus continuing their course,
and escaping observation, in passing the ‘flat’ an animated conversation
was overheard among the hands, from which it was easily gathered that the
escape of the rebel was the engrossing topic in the town of Wilmington,
the place of their departure. and towards which the rebel himself was now
finding his way as fast as the tide and padle could carry him. At present,
however, he felt no cause of alarm. One of the hands speaking in vulgar
English accent was heard to depone, 'By George if I could only get that
prize I’d be a happy man, and would go back to old h—England.’ To this
base insinuation a threatening proof was administered by other parties,
who replied in genuine Gaelic idiom and said, ‘It’s yourself that would
need to have the face and the conscience, the day you would do that and
they further signified their readiness to render any assistance to their
brave countryman should opportunity offer. Those parties were readily
recognized from their accent to be no other than Captain McArthur’s
intimate acquaintances. Sandie McDougall and Angus Ray, and who were so
well qualified from their known strength and courage to render most
valuable assistance in any cause in which their bravery might be enlisted.
If he only gave them the signal of his presence they would instantly fly
into his service and share his fate. However, it was deemed the wisest
course to pass on, and not put their prowess to the test. Hours had now
passed in successful progress without notice or interruption; and they are
at long last approaching Wilmington, their seaport, but a considerable
distance from the mouth of the river. The question is how are they to pass
it, whether by land or water, for it is now approaching towards day. What
is to be done must be done without a moment’s delay. It is at length
resolved to hazard the chance of passing it by canoe rather than
encountering the untried perils of a dismal swamp. The daring leader puts
his utmost strength to the test, striking the water right and left with
excited vigor. His feeling is ‘now or never’; for he knew this to be the
most critical position of his whole route; unless he could get past it
before break of day his case was hopeless. The dreaded town is at length
in view, engendering fear and terror, but not despair. Several large
crafts are seen lying at the wharf, and lights are reflected from adjacent
shipping offices. Two small boats are observed crossing the river, and in
rather uncomfortable proximity. With these exceptions the inhabitants are
evidently in the enjoyment of undisturbed repose, and quite unconscious of
the phenomenon of such a notorious personage passing their doors with
triumphant success. Scarcely a word was heard, it was like a city of the
dead. Who can imagine the internal raptures of our lucky hero, on leaving
behind him, in the distance, that spot upon which his fate was suspended,
and in having the consciousness that he is now not far from the goal of
safety. Even now there are signals which cheer his heart. He begins
already to inhale the ocean breeze, and from that he derives an
exhilirating sensation such as he had not experienced for many years. He
gets the benefit of the ocean tide, fortunately, in his favor, and
carrying his little hull upon its bosom at such a rate as to supersede the
use of the paddle except in guiding the course. The ocean wave, however ,
is scarcely so favorable. It rocks and rolls their frail abode in such a
way as to threaten to put a sad finish to the successful labors of the
past. There is no help for it but to abandon the canoe a few miles sooner
than intended. There is, however, little cause for complaint, for they can
now see their way clear to their final terminus, if no untoward
circumstance arises. They leave the canoe on the beach, parting with it
forever, but not without a sigh of emotion, as if bidding farewell to a
good friend. But the paddle they cling to as a memento of its
achievements, the operator remarking—’It did me better service than any
sword ever put into my hand.’ A few miles walk from the landing, which is
on the southern shore of the estuary, and they are in sight of a small
hamlet, which lies upon the shore. And what is more inspiring of hope and
courage, they are in sight of a vessel of considerable tonnage, lying at
anchor off the shore, and displaying the British flag, floating in the
morning breeze, evidently preparing to hoist sail. Now is their chance.
This must be their ark of safety if they are ever to escape such billows
of adversity as they have been struggling with for some days past. To get
on board is that upon which their hearts are set, and all that is required
in order to defy all enemies and pursuers. Not thinking that there is
anything in the wind in this pretty hamlet, they make straight for the
vessel, but they go but a few paces in that direction before another
crisis turns up. Enemies are still in pursuit. A small body of men,
apparently under commission, are observed a short distance beyond the
hamlet as if anticipating the possibility of the escaped prisoner making
his way to the British ship. Nor is the surmise groundless, as the signal
proves. In their perplexity the objects of pursuit have to lie in ambush
and await the course of events. Their military pursuers are now wending
their way in the opposite direction until they are almost lost to view.
Now is the time for a last desperate effort. They rush for the shore, and
there accost a sallow lank-looking boatman followed by a negro, on the
lookout for custom, in their marine calling. A request is made for their
boat and services, for conveyance to the ship. At first the man looks
suspicious and sceptical, but on expostulation that there was the utmost
necessity for an interview with the captain before sailing, and important
dispatches to be sent home, and a hint given that a fee for services in
such a case was of no object, he at once consents; the ferry boat is
launched, and in a few minutes the party are off from the shore. But the
military party observing these movements begin to retrace their steps in
order to ascertain what all this means, and who the party are. They put to
their heels and race towards the shore as fast as their feet can carry
them. They feel tantalised to find that they have been sleeping at their
post, and that the very object of their search is now halfway to the goal
of safety. They signal and halloo with all their might, but getting no
answer they fire a volley of shot in the direction of the boat. This has
no effect, except for an instant, to put a stop to the rowing. The boatman
gets alarmed as he now more than guesses who the noted passenger is, and
he signifies his determination to put back and avoid the consequences that
may be fatal to himself. The hero puts a sudden stop to further parley. He
flings a gold sovereign to the swarthy rower, commands him simply to
fulfil his promise, but to refund the balance of change upon their return
from the ship—he must see the captain before sailing.’ To enforce his
command the sturdy Highlander, who was more than a match for the two, took
up his loaded musket and intimated what the consequences would be if they
refused to obey orders. This had the desired effect. The rowers pulled
with might and main, and in a few minutes the passengers were left safe
and sound on board the gallant ship, and surrounded by a sympathising and
hospitable crew. The fugitives were at last safe, despite rewards and
sanguine pursuers. But their situation they could scarcely realize, their
past life seemed more like a dream than a reality. Our brave heroine was
again quite over-come. The reaction was too much for her nerves. In being
led to the cabin she would have fallen prostrate on the deck had she not
been supported. And who can wonder, in view of her fatigues and
privations, her hair-breadth escapes and mental anxieties. But she
survived it all. Sails are now hoisted to the favoring breeze, anchor
weighed, and our now rejoicing pilgrims bade a lasting farewell to the
ever memorable shores of Carolina. In care of the courteous commander
they, in due time, reached their island home in the Scottish Highlands,
and there lived to a good old age in peace and contentment. They had the
pleasure of seeing the tender object of their solicitude grow up to
womanhood, and afterwards enjoying the blessings of married life. And the
veteran officer himself found no greater pleasure in whiling away the
hours of his repose than in rehearsing to an entranced auditory, among the
stirring scenes of the American Revolution, the marvellous story of his
own fate: the principal events of which are here hurriedly and imperfectly
sketched from a current tradition among his admiring countrymen in the two
HIGHLANDERS IN SOUTH CAROLINA.
There was no distinctively Highland
settlement in South Carolina, although there was quite an influx of
emigrants of this class into the province. Efforts were made to divert the
Highlanders into the new settlements. As early as 1716 Governor Daniel
informed the Assembly that he had bought thirty of the Highland Scots
rebels at £30 per head, for whom the London agent had petitioned, and
requested power to purchase more. This purchase was sanctioned by the
Assembly, but wished no more "till we see how these behave them selves. On
August 4th another issue of £15000 in bills was authorized to be stamped
to pay for these Scots, who were to be employed as Soldiers in defending
Inducements were held out to the
Highlanders, who had left their homes after the battle of Culloden, to
settle in South Carolina. The "High Hills of Santee." which lie between
Lynche’s creek and the Wateree, in what is now Sumter County, were
designed for them. The exiles, however, baffled by contrary winds, were
driven into the Cape Fear, and from thence a part of them crossed and
settled higher up, in what is now Darlington County, the rest having taken
up their abode in North Carolina.
The war fever engendered by the
Revolution was exhibited by these people, some of whom, at least, took up
arms against their adopted country. October 31, 1776, at Charleston, South
Carolina, the following, who had been taken prisoners by the navy, signed
their parole, which also stipulated that they should go to Salisbury,
Dun McNicol, Cap. R. H. E., Hugh
Fraser, Lieut. R. H. F. Dun MacDougall, Walter Cunningham, Angus Cameron,
Laughlin McDonald, Hector McQuary, Alexr. Chisholm.
"We also undertake for Neal McNicol,
James Fraser, Alexr. McDonald & David Donaldson, that they shall be on the
same footing with ourselves." [North Carolina Colonial Records, Vol. X,
"Jany 28. 1777
These are to certify that Duncan
Nicol, Hugh Fraser, Alex. Chisholm, Angs. Cameron, Lach. MacDonald, Hector
McQuarrie, Walter Cunningham, Duncan MacDougall, Alen. McDonald, David
Donaldson, Jas. Fraser, Niel McNicol—prisoners of war from the neighboring
state of South Carolina have been on Parole in this town and within ten
miles Y. of for upwards of ten weeks—during which time they have
behaved themselves agreeable to their Parole and that they are now removed
to Halifax by order of the commanding officer of the District, in order to
be forwarded to the northward agreeable to order of Congress.
(Signed) Duncan McNicol, Capt., Hugh
Fraser, Lieut. R.
H. F., Alex. McDonald, James Fraser,
David Donaldsoii, Niel McNicoi, Alex Chisholm, Angus Cameron, Lach
McDonald, Hector Mc Quarrie, Walter Cunningham, Privates, Dun, McDougall,
N. B. The Parole of the prisoners of
war above mentd was sent to the Congress at Halifax, at their last
sitting. They are now sent under the direction of Capt. Martin
Fifer—Certified by orders of Committee at Salisbury this 28 Jan’y, 1777.
(Signed) May Chambers, Chr. Com."*
Miss Jennie M. Patten of Brush,
Colorado, a descendant of Alexander McNaughton, in a letter dated Feb.
26th, 1900 gives some very interesting facts, among which may be related
that at the close of the Revolution all of the Highland settlers of
Washington county would have been sent to Canada, had it not been for Hon.
Edward Savage, son-in-law of Alexander McNaughton, who had been an officer
in the Revolutionary army, and had sufficient influence to prevent his
wife’s relatives and friends being sent out of the country on account of
their tory proclivities. They considered that they had sworn allegiance to
the king, and considered themselves perjured persons if they violated
their oath. This idea appeared to be due from the fact that the land given
to them was in "the name of the king." From this the colonists thought the
land was given to them by the king.
The colonists did not all come to
Washington county to occupy the land allotted to them, for some remained
where they had settled after the collapse of Captain Campbell’s scheme,
but those who did settle in Argyle were related either by blood, or else
Alexander McNaughton came to America
in 1738, accompanied by his wife, Mary
McDonald, and his children, John, Moses, Eleanor
and Jeannette. They first settled at a place called Kaket, where they
lived several years, when they removed up the river to Tappan, and there
continued until the grant was made in Argyle. Alexander McNaughton died at
the home of his son-in-law, Edward Savage, near Salem, and was buried on
the land that had been granted him. The first to be interred in
the old Argyle cemetery was the daughter
Jeannette. The wife, Mary, died on the way home
from Burgoyne’s camp. The children of the colonists were loyal Americans,
although many of the colonists had been carried to the British camp for
ALLAN MCDONALD’S COMPLAINT TO THE
PRESIDENT OF CONGRESS.
"Philadelphia, March 25, 1776.
Sir: It is now several weeks since
the Scotch inhabitants in and about Johnstown, Tryon County, have been
required by General Schuvier to deliver up their arms; and that each and
all of them should parade in the above place, that he might take from this
small body six prisoners of his own nomination. The request was
accordingly complied with, and five other gentlemen with myself were made
prisoners of. As we are not conscious of having acted upon any principle
that merits such severe proceedings from Congress, we cannot help being a
good deal surprised at such treatment; but are willing to attribute this
rather to malicious, ill-designing people, than to gentlemen of so much
humanity and known character as the Congress consists of. The many
difficulties we met with since our landing on this Continent, (which is
but very lately,) burdened with women and children, we hope merit a share
in their feeling; and that they would obtain the surest conviction, before
we were removed from our families ; as, by a separation of the kind, they
are rendered destitute, and without access to either money or credit.
‘This is the reason why you will observe, in the article of capitulation
respecting the Scotch, that they made such a struggle for having their
respective families provided for in their absence. The General declared he
had no discretionary power to grant such, but that he would represent it,
as he hoped with success, to Congress; and in this opinion two other
gentlemen present supported him. The request is so just in itself that it
is but what you daily grant to the meanest of your prisoners. As we
cannot, we do not claim it by any agreement. Though, by a little attention
to that part of the capitulation, you will observe that we were put in the
hope and expectation of having them supported in their different
As to ourselves, we are put into a
tavern, with the proper allowance of bed and board. This is all that is
necessary so far. But what becomes of the external part of the body? This
requires its necessaries, and without the decent part of such, a gentleman
must be very intolerable to himself and others. I know I need not enter so
minutel in representing those difficulties to Congress or you, as your
established character and feelings will induce you to treat us as
gentlemen and prisoners, removed from all means of relief for ourselves or
families, but that of application to Congress. I arrived here last night
in order to have the honor of laying those matters personally, or in
writing, before you and them. Shall accordingly expect to be honored with
I am, most respectfully, sir, your
most obedient humble servant,
THE GLENGARRY SETTLERS.
Major General D. McLeod, of the
Patriot Army, Upper Canada, in his "Brief Review of the Settlement of
Upper Canada," published in 1841, adds the following interesting
"Gen. Howe, the then commander in
chief of the British forces in North America, on hearing that the Scots in
Virginia had joined the continentals, and were among the most active of
the opposers of British domination, despatched Sir John Johnstone to the
Scots settlement on the Mohawk—Captain James Craig, afterwards Governor of
Lower Canada, and Lieut. Donald Cameron of the Regulars, to other parts.
to induce the Highlanders to join the Royal Standard, and to convince
them, that their interest and safety depended on their doing so.
uninstructed Highlanders, that the rebels had neither money, means, nor
allies that it was impossible they could for any length of time, withstand
the mighty power and means of Great Britain: that their property would be
confiscated, and apportioned to the royalists who should volunteer to
reduce them to subjection. The Highlanders having duly weighed these
circumstances, came to the conclusion, that the Americans would, like the
Scots, in 1746, be ultimately overpowered :—that it was therefore to their
interest, as they would not be permitted to remain neutral, to join the
The greater part of them volunteered
under the command of Sir. J. Johnstone, and served faithfully with him
until the peace of 1783. On the exchange of the ratification of peace,
these unfortunate Highlanders, saw themselves once more bereft of house
and home. The reward of their loyalty, and attachment to British supremacy
after fighting the battles of England for seven long and doubtful years,
and sacrificing their all, was finally, an ungenerous abandonment by the
British government of their interests, in not securing their property and
personal safety in the treaty of peace. The object for which their
services were required, not being accomplished, they were unceremoniously
left to shift for themselves in the lower Province, among a race of
people, whose language they did not understand, and whose manners and
habits of life were quite dissimilar to their own. Col. McDonald, a near
kinsman of the chief of that name, and who had, also, taken an active part
in the royal army, during the revolution, commiserating their unfortunate
condition, collected them together, and in a friendly manner, in their own
native language, informed them, that if it were agreeable to their wishes,
he would forthwith apply to the governor for a tract of land in the upper
Province, where they might settle down in a body; and where, as they spoke
a language different to that of the natives, they might enjoy their own
society, and be better able to assist each other.
This, above all things, was what
they wished for, and they therefore received the proposal with gratitude.
Without much further delay, the Colonel proceeded to the Upper Province,
pitched upon the eastern part of the eastern District: and after choosing
a location for himself, directed his course to head quarters—informed the
Governor of his plans and intentions, praying him to confirm the request
of his countrymen, and prevent their return to the United States. The
governor approved of his design, and promised every assistance. Satisfied
that all was done, that could be reasonably expected, the Colonel lost no
time, in communicating the result of his mission to his expectant
countrymen ; and they, in a short time afterwards, removed with him to
their new location. The Highlanders, not long after, proposed to the
Colonel as a mark of their approbation for his services, to call
the settlement Glengarry, in honor of the chief of his clan, by which name
it is distinguished to this day. It may be proper to remember, in this
place, that many of these were the immediate descendants of the proscribed
Highlanders of 1715, and not a few the descendants of the relatives of the
treacherously murdered clans of Glencoe (for their faithful and
incorruptible adherence to the royal family of Stuart,) by king William
the 3d, of Bloody memory, the Dutch defender of the English christian tory
faith. But by far the major part, were the patriots of 1745.—the gallant
supporters of the deeply lamented prince Charles Edward and who, as before
stated, had sought refuge in the colonies, from the British dungeons and
It was not, therefore, their
attachment to the British crown, nor their love of British institutions,
that induced them to take up arms against the Americans but their fears
that the insurrection, would prove as disastrous to the sons of Liberty,
as the Rebellion and the fatal field of Culloden had been to themselves;
and that if any of them were found in the ranks of the discontented, they
would be more severely dealt with in consequence of their former
rebellion. Their chagrin was great indeed, especially, when they compared
their former comfortable circumstances, in the state of New York, with
their present miserable condition and particularly, when they reflected
how foolishly they had permitted themselves to be duped, out of their once
happy homes by the promises of a government, which they knew from former
experience, to be as false and treacherous, as it was cruel and
overbearing. They settled down, but with no very friendly feelings towards
a government which had allured them to their ruin, and which at last, left
them to their own resources, after fighting their battles for eight
sanguinary years. Nor are their descendants, at this day, remarkable for
either their loyalty, or attachment, to the reigning family. These were
the first settlers of Glengarry. It is a singular circumstance, that,
nearly all the Highlanders, who fought for liberty and independence, and
who remained in the U. S., afterwards became rich and independent, while
on the other hand, with a very few exceptions, every individual, whether
American or European, who took up arms against the revolution, became
blighted in his prospects," (pp. 33-36).
Having mentioned in particular
Butler's Rangers the following from Lossings "Pictorial Field-Book of the
War of 1812," may be of some interest "Some of Butler’s Rangers, those
bitter Tory marauders in Central New York during the Revolution, who in
cruelty often shamed Brant and his braves, settled in Toronto, and were
mostly men of savage character, who met death by violence. Mr. John Ross
knew a Mr. D—, one of these Rangers, who, when intoxicated, once told him
that ‘the sweetest steak he ever ate was the breast of a woman, which he
cut off and broiled,'" (p. 592).
NOTE TO CHAPTER VIII.
The method of warfare carried on by
Sir John Johnson and his adherents did not sway the lofty mind of
Washington as may he illustrated in the following narration furnished the
author by Rev. Dr. R. Cameron, grandson of Alexander Cameron, who was a
direct descendant of Donald Dubh of Lochiel. This Alexander Cameron came
to America in 1773, and on the outbreak of the Revolution enlisted as a
private under Sir John Johnson. Three times he was taken prisoner and
condemned to be executed as a spy. How he escaped the first time is
unknown. The second time, the wife of the presiding officer at the
court-martial, informed him in Gaelic that he would be condemned, and
assisted him in dressing him in her own clothes, and thus escaped to the
woods. The third time, his mother, Mary Cameron of Glennevis, rode all the
way from Albany to Valley Forge on horseback and personally plead her
cause before Washington. Having listened to her patiently, the mighty
chief replied : "Mrs. Cameron, I will pardon your son for your sake, but
you must promise me that you will take him to Canada at once, or he will
be shot." The whole family left for Canada.
It is now scarcely known that one
company of Montgomery’s Highlanders took part in the attempted
expatriation of the Christian Indians—better known as Moravian Indians—in
Pennsylvania. Owing to an attack made by savages, in 1763, against a
Scotch-Irish settlement, those of that nationality at Paxton became
bitterly inflamed against the Moravian Indians and deter mined upon their
extermination. As these Indians were harmless and never engaged in strife,
they appealed to the governor of Pennnsylvania for protection. These
people, then living at Nazareth, Nain and Bethlehem, under the decree of
the Council and the Assembly, were ordered by Governor Penn to be disarmed
and taken to Philadelphia. Although their arms were the insignia of their
freedom, yet these they surrendered to Sheriff Jennings, and on the eighth
of November the procession moved towards Philadelphia. On their arrival in
Philadelphia they were ordered to the "British Barracks," which had been
erected soon after Braddock’s defeat. At this time several companies of
Montgomery’s Highlanders were there quartered. On the morning of the
eleventh, the first three wagons, filled with women and children, passed
in at the gate. This movement aroused the Highlanders, and seizing their
muskets, they rushed tumultuously together, stopped the rest of the
wagons, and threatened to fire among the cowering women and children in
the yard if they did not instantly leave. Meanwhile a dreadful mob
gathered around the Indians, deriding, reviling, and charging them with
all the outrages committed by the savages, threatening to kill them on the
spot. From ten o’clock until three these Indians, with the missionaries,
endured every abuse which wild frenzy and ribald vulgarity could clothe in
words. In the midst of this persecution some Quakers braved the danger of
the mob and taking the Indians by the hand gave them words of
encouragement. During all this tumult the Indians remained silent, but
considered "what insult and mockery our Savior had suffered on their
The soldiers persisting in their
refusal to allow the Moravian Indians admission, after five hours, the
latter were marched through the city, thousands following them with great
clamor, to the outskirts, where the mob dispersed. The Indians were from
thence conveyed to Province Island.
The Scotch-Irish of Paxton next
turned their attention to a party of peaceable Indians who had long lived
quietly among white people in the small village of Canestoga, near
Lancaster, and on the fourteenth of December attacked and murdered
fourteen of them in their huts. The rest fled to Lancaster and for
protection were lodged in the work-house, a strong building and well
secured. They were followed by the miscreants who broke into the building,
and though the Indians begged their lives on their knees, yet all were
cruelly murdered and their mangled re mains thrown into the court-yard.
The assassins became emboldened by
many hundreds from Paxton and other parts of the county of Lancaster
joining their number, and planned to set out for Philadelphia, and not
rest until all the Indians were massacred. While these troubles were
brewing the Moravian Indians celebrated the Lord’s Supper at the
commencement of the year 1764, and renewed their covenant to show forth
his death in his walk and conversation.
In order to protect them the
government determined to send them out of the colony and place them under
the care of Sir William Johnson, in New York, as the Indians had expressed
their desire to be no longer detained from their families. [Colonial
Records of Penna., Vol. IX, p. 111.] On January 4, 1764, the Moravian
Indians numbering about one hundred and forty persons, were placed under
the convoy of Captain James Robertson, of Montgomery’s Highlanders, and
seventy Highlanders, for New York City. The Highlanders "behaved at first
very wild and unfriendly, being particularly troublesome to the young
women by their profane conversation, but were persuaded by degrees to
conduct themselves with more order and decency."
On arriving at Amboy, one of the
soldiers exclaimed : "Would to God., all the white people were as good
Christians, as these Indians."
The Indians were not allowed to
enter New York, but were returned to Philadelphia under a guard of one
hundred and seventy men from General Gage’s army, commanded by Captain
Schloffer, one party leading the van, and the other bringing up the rear.
Captain Robertson and his Highlanders passed over to New York.
HIGHLANDERS REFUSED LANDS IN AMERICA.
"To the King’s Most Excellent
Majesty in Council,
The Humble Petition of James
Macdonald, Merchant in Porterie in the Isle of Sky and Normand Macdonald
of Slate in the said Island for themselves and on behalf of Hugh Macdonald
Edmund Macqueen John Betton and Alexander Macqueen of Slate. The Reverend
Mr. William Macqueen and Alexander Macdonald of the said Island of Sky and
county of Inverness Most Humbly Sheweth That your petitioners having had
in view to form a settlement to themselves and Families in your Majesty’s
Province in North Carolina have for some time been making Dispositions for
that purpose by engaging Servants and disposing of their effects in this
country. And being now ready to embark and carry their intentions into
Execution. They most humbly pray your Majesty will be graciously pleased
to Grant unto your petitioners Forty thousand Acres of Land in the said
province of North Carolina upon the Terms and Conditions it has been usual
to give such Grants or as to your Majesty shall seem proper,
And your petitioners shall ever pray,
Whitehall 21st of June 1771.
In obedience to His Majesty’s Order
in Council, dated June 14th, 1771, we have taken into consideration, the
humble Petition of James Macdonald, Merchant in Portrie in the Isle of Sky
and Normand Macdonald of Slate in the said Island for themselves and on
behalf of Hugh Macdonald, Edmund Macqueen, John Relton and Alexander
Macqueen of Slate the Reverend Mr William Macqueen and Alexander Macdonald
of the said Isle of Sky and County of Inverness, setting forth that the
Petitioners having had in view to form a Settlement to themselves and
their Families in His Majesty’s province of North Carolina, have for some
time been making dispositions for that purpose by engaging servants and
disposing of their effects in this Country and being now ready to embark
and carry their said intention into execution, the Petitioners humbly
pray, that His Majesty will he pleased to grant them forty thousand Acres
of Land in the said Province upon the terms and conditions it hath been
usual to grant such Lands. Whereupon We beg leave to report to your
Lordships, That the emigration of inhabitants of Great Britain and Ireland
to the American Colonies is a circumstance which in our opinion cannot
fail to lessen the strength and security and to prejudice the landed
Interest and Manufactures of these Kingdoms and the great extent to which
this emigration hath of late years prevailed renders it an object well
deserving the serious attention of government.
the ground of this
opinion We have thought it necessary in Cases where we have recommended
Grants of Land in America, to be made to persons of substance and ability
in this Kingdom, to propose amongst other conditions, that they should be
settled by foreign Protestants; and therefore We can on no account
recommend to your Lordships to advise His Majesty to comply with the
prayer of a Petition, founded on a resolution taken by a number of
considerable persons to abandon their settlements in this Kingdom and to
pass over into America, with their Families and Dependants in a large Body
and which therefore holds out a Plan that we think, instead of meriting
the Encouragement, ought rather to receive the discountenance of
We are My Lords &c.
"At the Court of St James’s the 19th day of June 1772.
The King’s most Excellent Majesty in Council.
Whereas there was this day read at
the Board a Report from the Right Honourable the Lords of the Committee of
Council for plantation affairs Dated the 17th of this Instant in the words
following viz, Your Majesty having been pleased by your order in council
of the 14th June 1771, to refer to the Lords Commissioners for Trade and
Plantations the humble petition of James Macdonald Merchant of Portrie in
the Isle of Sky and Norman Macdonald of Slate in the said Island for
themselves and on behalf of Hugh Macdonald Edmund Macqueen John Betton and
Alexander Macqueen of Slate and Reverend Mr Wm Macqueen and Alexander
Macdonald of the said Isle of Sky and County of Inverness setting forth
that the petitioners have had in view to form a settlement to themselves
and their families in your Majesty’s Province of North Carolina have for
sometime been making Dispositions for that purpose by engaging servants
and disposing of their Effects in this Country and being now ready to
embark and carry their said intention into execution the petition— ers
humbly pray that your Majesty will be pleased to grant them Forty thousand
acres ot Land in the said Province upon the terms and conditions it hath
been usual to grant such Lands. The said Lords Commissioners have reported
to this Committee "that the emigration of the Inhabitants of Great Britain
and Ireland to the American Colonies is a circumstance which in their
opinion cannot fail to lessen the strength and security and to prejudice
the landed Interest and manufactures of these Kingdoms and the great
extent to which this emigration has of late years prevailed renders it an
object well deserving the serious attention of Government that upon the
Ground of this opinion they have thought it necessary in cases where they
have recommended Grants of Land in America to be made to persons of
substance and ability in this Kingdom to propose amongst other conditions
that they should be settled by foreign protestants and therefore the said
Lords Commissioners can on no account recommend to this committee to
advise your Majesty to comply with the prayer of a petition founded on a
resolution taken by a number of considerable persons to abandon their
settlements in this Kingdom and to pass over to America with their
Families and Dependants in a large body and which therefore holds out a
plan that they think instead of meeting the encouragement ought rather to
receive the discouragement of Government. The Lords of the Committee this
day took the said Representation and petition into consideration and
concurring in opinion with the said Lord Commissioners for Trade and
Plantations do agree humbly to report as their opinion to your Majesty
that the said Petition of the said James and Norman Macdonald ought to be
His Majesty taking the said Report
into consideration was pleased with the advise of his Privy Council to
approve thereof and to order as it is hereby ordered that the said
Petition of the said James and Norman Macdonald be and it is hereby
dismissed this board. "*
CAPTAIN JAMES STEWART COMMISSIONED TO
RAISE A COMPANY OF HIGHLANDERS.
The Records of the New York
Convention of July 25, 1775, contain the following:
"The Committee appointed to take
into consideration and report the most proper mode for employing in the
service of this State Mr. James Stewart, late Lieutenant in Colonel
Livingston’s Regiment, delivered in their Report, which was read; and the
same being read, paragraph by paragraph, and amended, was agreed to, and
is in the words following, to wit:
Resolved. That the said James
Stewart is desiring a Captain’s Commission in the service of this State,
and that a Warrant be immediately given to him to raise a Company with all
That the said Company ought to
consist of Scotch Highlanders, or as many of them as possible, and that
they serve during the war, unless sooner discharged by this Convention, or
a future Legislature of this State.
That the said Company shall consist
of one Captain, one Lieutenant, one Ensign, four Sergeants, four
Corporals, one Drum, one Fife, and not less than sixty-two Privates.
That a Bounty of fifteen dollars be
allowed to each Non-Commissioned Officer and Private.
That they be entitled to Continental
Pay and Rations, and subject to the Continental Articles of War, till
further orders from this Convention or a future Legislature of this State.
That the said James Stewart shall
not receive pay as a Captain until he shall have returned to this
Convention, or a future Legislature of this State, a regular muster roll,
upon oath of thirty able—bodied men, duly inlisted.
That the Treasurer of this
Convention be ordered to advance to the said James Stewart £144, in order
to enable him to advance the bounty to those he may inlist taking his
receipt to account for the same to the Treasurer of this State.
That as soon as the said James
Stewart shall have returned to this Convention, or a future Legislature of
this State, a regular muster—roll of thirty able—bodied men, duly inlisted.
certifying that the said men have been mustered, in the presence of a
person to be appointed by the Chairman of the Committee of the City and
County of Albany, or of a person to be appointed by the Chairman of the
Committee of the City and County of New York, that then, and not before,
the said James Stewart shall be authorized to draw upon the Chairman of
the Committee of the City and County of Albany for the further sum of £100
in order that he may be enabled to proceed in his inlistment, giving his
receipt to account for the same to the Treasurer of this State; and that
when the said James Stewart shall have been duly inlisted and mustered, in
the presence of a person to be appointed by the Chairman of the Committee
of the City and County of Albany, the whole of his Company, or as many as
he can inlist, and then he shall be entitled to receive of the said
Chairman of the County Committee the remaining proportion of bounty due to
the non-commissioned officers and privates which he shall have inlisted.
That if the said James Stewart shall
not be able to complete the inlistrnent of this Company, that he shall
make a report of the same, with all dispatch, to the President of this
Convention, or to a future Legislature, who will either order his
Commission to issue, or make such further provision for his trouble in
recruiting as the equity of the case shall require.
That the Treasurer of this
Convention be ordered to remit into the hands of John Barclay, Esquire, of
the City of Albany, the sum of £288, on or before the last day of December
next, in order to enable him to make unto the said James Stewart the
That the said James Stewart shall be
authorized to engage to each man the sum of 7s. per week, billeting money,
till such time as further provision is made for the subsistence of his
That the said Company, when raised,
shall be either employed as an independent Company, or incorporated into
any Battalion as to this Convention, or to a future proper authority of
this State, shall appear advisable."
There is no evidence that this
action of the Convention terminated in any thing tangible. There was a
James Stewart, captain of the third company, in the Fifth regiment of the
New York Line, and while there was a large percentage in that regiment
bearing Highland names, yet Captain Stewart’s company had but five. It is
not to be assumed that the two names represented the same person.
LIST OF SUBSCRIBERS.
Adams, Comfort A., 46 Streator ave., Cleveland, O.
Alabama Polytechnic Institute Library, Auburn, Ala.
Alexander, M. J., Lilac St., E. E.. Pittsburg. Pa.
Alexander, William H., 302 South 31st St.. Omaha. Neb.
Allread, Hon. J. I., Attorney-at-Law, Greenville, O.
Ammons, Mrs. Harriet McL., Franklin, O.
Bain, James, Jr., Public Library, Toronto, Ont.
Bedford, Miss Florence E., Springboro, O.
Boston Athenaeum, Boston, Mass.
Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Me.
Brown, William, Bookseller, Edinburgh, Scot. (4 copies).
Buchanan, Charles J., 79 Chapel St.. Albany, N. Y.
Butte Free Public Library, Butte, Mont,
Cameron, Mrs. Angus, La Crosse, Wis.
Cameron, Rev. Robert, D. D., 487 Hope St., Providence. R. I.
Camp, Mrs. B. H., Brookfield, Conn.
Campbell, A. A., Pharmacist, 235 Rondo St., St. Paul, Minn.
Campbell, E. K., Attorney-at-Law, Birmingham, Ala.
Campbell, J. D., General Solicitor, P. & R., Railway, Wyncote, Pa.
Campbell, Mrs. Mary C., 2 Congress St.. Hartford, Conn.
Campbell, Rev. Clement C., Hartford, Wis.
Carnegie Free Library, Braddock, Pa.
Carnegie Library, Allegheny. Pa.
Carnegie Library, Pittsburgh, Pa.
Carruthers, David, New York City.
Casselman, Prof. A. C., 36 St. James ave., Toronto, Ont.
Chisholm, W. P., M. D., Brockton, Mass.
Colquhoun, Sir James of Luss, Bart., (2 copies).
Colwell, Irving S., Bookseller, Auburn, N. Y.
Cornell University Library, Ithaca, N. Y.
Cowan, George, Edinburgh, Scot.
Cowles. Dr. Edward, Supt. McLean Hospital. Waverly, Mass.
Craig, Allen, Mauch Chunk, Pa.
Cumming, J. McGregor, 1 East 39th St., New York City.
Cushing & Co., Booksellers, Baltimore, Md.
Day, Prof. Alfred, Day’s School of Shorthand, Cleveland, O.
Deacon, Edward, Bridgeport, Conn.
Davenport, Benjamin Rush, 83 Halsey, Cleveland, O.
Drake, R. Ingalton, Bookseller. Eton.
Douglas, Percy, 1002 Walnut Sr.. Kansas City, Mo. (2 copies).
Drummond, Josiah H., Attorney-at-Law, Portland, Me.
Duncan. Rev. Herman C., S. T. D., Alexandria. La.
Fairbanks. Rev. Edward T., St. Johnsburv. Vt.
Ferguson, Henry, 123 Vernon St., Hartford, Conn.
Ferguson, S. P., Blue Hill Observatory, Hyde Park, Mass.
Fiske, Prof. John, LL. D., 22 Berkeley St., Cambridge, Mass.
Forbes Library. Northampton. Mass.
Fraser-Mackintosh, Charles of Drummond, LL. D., F. S. A. Scot.
Free Public Library, Newark, N. J.
Free Public Library, Paterson, N. J.
Free Public Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Free Public Library, St. Joseph, Mo.
Free Public Library, Worcester, Mass.
Goulden & Curry, Booksellers, Tunbridge Wells.
Graham, Geo. S., 509 Crozer Building, Philadelphia, Pa.
G. P. Putnam’s Sons, Publishers & Booksellers, New York City.
Grosvenor Public Library, Buffalo, N. Y.
Harris, Joseph S., 168 School Lane, Germantown, Philadelphia, Pa.
Herrick, L. C., M. D., 106 E. Broad St., Columbus, O.
Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pa.
Howard, A. McLean, Toronto, Ont.
Humphrey, Geo. P.. Bookseller, Rochester, N. Y.
Huntington, Geo.. Librarian Carleton College. Northfield, Minn.
Indianapolis Public Library, Indianapolis, lnd.
Indiana University Library, Bloomington, Ind.
James Prendergast Free Library, Jamestown, N. Y.
Johnston, John, Banker, Milwaukee, Wis.
Kenan, Spalding, M. D.. Darien, Ga.
Leggat Brothers, Booksellers, New York City.
Little, Brown & Co., Booksellers, Boston, Mass. (2 copies).
Macdonald, AEneas A., Barrister-at-Law, Charlottetown, P. E. I.
Macdonald, Alexander. Town Clerk, Govan, Glasgow, Scot.
Macdonald, John Archibald, Traccadie Cross, P. E. I.
Maclnnis, Rev. J. M., Hallock, Minn.
Mackay, John, C. E., J. P., Hereford, Scot. (2 copies).
Maclean, Alex. C., M. D., 346 S. W. Temple St., Salt Lake City, Utah.
MacLean, Archibald, M. D., Sarnia. Ont.
Maclean, Arthur A., 712 People’s Bank Bldg., Denver, Colo.
MacLean, Daniel, P. 0. Box 65, Durango, Colo.
Maclean, Donald, M. D., LL. D., 821 Woodward ave., Detroit, Mich.
Maclean, K. T., Thomasville, Ga.
Maclean, Malcolm, P. M., Walkerton, Ont.
MacLean, R. H., Wells, Delta Co., Mich.
MacLean, Rev. James T., Oakryn, Pa.
Macleod, Norman, Bookseller, Edinburgh.
MacRae, Capt. Donald, Wilmington, N. C.
MacRae, Prof. Jas. C., Dean of Law School, Chapel Hill, N. C.
McAdam, Judge David. New York City.
McCarrell, Hon. Sam’l J. M., Attorney-at-Law, Harrisburg, Pa.
McClain. E. L., Greenfield, O.
McClain, Robert A., No. 9 Central Square, Youngstown, 0.
McClean, Miss Abby M., 208 Melrose St. Melrose Highlands. Mass.
McClellan, Prof. H. B., Prin. Sayre Female Inst., Lexington, Ky.
McCook, Colonel John J.. 120 Broadway, New York City.
McCook, J. J., New York City.
McCook, Rev. Henry C., D. D.. The Manse, 3700 Chestnut St., Phila., Pa.
McCorvey, Prof. Thomas Chalmers. Tuscaloosa, Ala.
McCowan, Prof. J. S., 12 N. 2nd St., Marshalltown, Iowa.
McCulloch, H. M., Presho, N. Y.
McDonald, M. G., Rome, Ga.
McDonald, Wm., 51 Lancaster St., Albany, N. Y.
McGee, Prof. W. J., Bureau Am. Ethnology, Washington D. C.
McGlauflin, Rev. W. H., D. D.. 243 Baker St., Atlanta, Ga.
McGrew, Hon. J. C., Kingwood, West Va.
Mcllhenny. John, 1339 Cherry St., Philadelphia, Pa.
McIntosh, William Swinton, Darien, Ga.
Mclver. Mrs. G. W., 1611 Larkin St., San Francisco, Calif.
McKeithen, N. A., Aberdeen, N. C.
McKenzie, Alexander A., Hanover, N. H.
McLane. James, Franklin, O.
McLaughlin, Rev. D. N., Chester, S. C.
McLaren, Rt. Rev. W. E., D. D., D. C. L., Chicago, Ill.
McLean, Angus W., Attorney-at-Law, Lumberton, N. C.
McLean, Col. Hugh H., Barrister, St. John, N. B.
McLean, David, Danbury, Conn.
McLean, Harry D., Souris, P. E. I.
McLean, Hon. Donald, Counselor-at-Law, 27 William St., New York City.
McLean, John, Danbury, Conn.
McLean, John, M. D., 3 111th St., Pullman, Chicago, Ill.
McLean, Mrs. C. B., Winebiddle Ave., & Harriet St., Pittsburgh, Pa.
McLean, Prof. Andrew C., Oneida St.. Pittsburgh, Pa.
McLean, Rev. J. C., St. Georges, P. E. I.
McLean, Rev. J. K., D. D., Pres’t Pacific Theol. Seminary, Oakland, Calif.
McLean, Wm., Albion, Neb.
McLeod, Hugh M., Attorney-at-Law, Wausa, Neb.
McMillan, Rev. D. J., D. D., New York City.
McNeill, John, New York City.
McNeill, Malcolm, Lake Forest, Ill.
McQueen, Joseph P., Attorney-at-Law, Eutaw, Ala.
Mercantile Library, Astor Place, New York City.
Mercantile Library, St. Louis, Mo.
Minnesota Historical Society, St. Paul, Minn.
Mitchell Library, Glasgow, Scot.
Monroe, Prof. Will S., State Normal School, Westfield, Mass.
Montgomery, D. B., Owensville, Ind.
Montgomery, H. P., Attorney-at-Law. Georgetown, Ky.
Morey, Hon. H. L., Attorney-at-Law, Hamilton, O.
Munro, David A., New York City.
Munro, Rev. G. A., Milford, Neb.
Munro, Rev. John J., Forest ave., New York City.
Munro. Robert F.. New York City.
New Hampshire Historical Society, Concord, N. H.
New Harmony Working Men’s Institute. New Harmony, Ind.
New York Historical Society, New York City.
New York Public Library, New York City.
Nickerson, Sereno D., Masonic Temple, Boston, Mass.
Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Society, Columbus, O.
Osterhout Free Library, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
Pardoe, Avern, Legislative Librarian, Toronto, Ont.
Patten, Miss Jennie M., Brush, Colo.
Patten, James A., 51-53 Board of Trade, Chicago, Ill. (3 copies).
Peoria Public Library, Peoria, Ill. —
Preston & Rounds Co., Booksellers, Providence, R. I.
Public Library and Reading Room, Bridgeport, Conn
Public Library, Cincinnati, O.
Public Library, Chicago, Ill.
Public Library, Detroit, Mich.
Public Library, Milwaukee, Wis.
Reid, Win. M., Kansas City, Mo.
Robertson, Major G. C., of Widmerpool.
Robertson. R. S., Attorney-at-Law, Fort Wayne, Ind.
Ross, A. W., Columbia, B. C.
Selby, Prof. J. L., Greenville, O.
Slocum, Chas. E., M. D., Ph. D., Defiance, O.
Smith, Mrs. J. Morgan, Birmingham, Ala.
Smith, Mrs. Samuel Francis. Davenport, Iowa.
State Historical Society of Wisconsin, Madison, Wis.
State Library, Columbus, O.
State Library, Harrisburg, Pa.
Stewart, John A., New York City.
St. Paul Book and Stationary Co., St. Paul, Minn.
Stuart, Henry C., Custom House, New York City.
Syracuse Central Library, Syracuse, N. Y.
The Bowen-Merrill Co., Booksellers, Indianapolis, Ind. (2 copies).
The John Crerar Library, Chicago, Ill.
The Robert Clarke Co., Booksellers, Cincinnati, O.
Thomson, Hon. Wm., Judge Judicial District, Burlingame, Kan.
Thomson, William, New York City.
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N. C.
Vaughn, Wm. J., Nashville, Tenn.
War Department Library, Washington, D. C.
W. B. Clarke Co., Booksellers, Boston, Mass.
Welsh, R. G., New York City.
Western Reserve Historical Society, Cleveland, O.
Westfield Athamaeum, Westfield, Mass.
Wheeling Public Library, Wheeling, W. Va.
Wilkinson, Mrs. Henry W., 168 Bowen St.. Providence, R. I.
Williams College Library, Williamstown, Mass.
Wilson, Mrs. Obed J., 378 Lafayette ave., Clifton, Cincinnati, O.
Wright, Prof. G. Frederick, D. D., LL. D., Oberlin, O.
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