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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letters from inhabitants of South Carolina [Extracts]
No Author
May 15, 1715 - April 21, 1716
Volume 02, Pages 251-254

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[B. P. R. O. Proprieties. B. T. Vol. 10. Q. 96.]

May ye 15th 1715.

The Sarraws give out amongst the Wineaus and Norward Indians that they are ordered by the Virginia Traders to destroy this Country and do their utmost Endeavours to draw those Indians with the Wacemaus to their party, they offer them plunder and threaten they will destroy all that will not side with them

June ye 19th 1715

We have an account per some Indians that are lately taken that the Virginia Traders encouraged our Indians to do what they have done & promised to supply them at a much easier rate than our Indian Traders did and that they would give them much better treatment. We have the names of some of them who encouraged them to commit this barbarous act. I shall not say any more of this matter till we have a further account.

April ye 5th 1716.


I perceived in the accounts of our affairs in England that the Lords Commrs of Trade are informed by Mr Byrd of Virginia several things which he knows but little of. But in one particular he is right, which is our Traders trusting so largely their Goods to the Indians, but as to every thing else it is false notions of the management of Indians who are naturally proud and only want good stores of our goods to set them on mischief. And if they were to have a good supply of goods at Virginia rates they would soon be our Masters, no people keeps their Indians in so much subjection as the Spaniards and only by keeping them poor, Mr Bird makes mention of their Tributaries in how great order they keep them, which altogether are but very few and compounded of at least eighteen or twenty different nations and the largest of them not above

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eighty men and some but ten men. I heartily wish Virginia had all our Indians so we were but secured from them. That they may try whether their cheap selling them goods and kind usage would avail anything to such a number. There's another false ascertion from a new England Merchant that we used to set our Friendly Indians together to war on each other for the advantage of slaves, which you know to be Falce and that it was always our care to keep them at Peace which we dearly pay for now.

I desire you will also take notice of the False Representation of the Virginians in England when Sr Nathaniel Johnson was our Governor. wherein is asserted that the Cattabas are in their Government which to your knowledge is not & I have taken the Latitude of the most northern Towns of those Indian Settlements which I found to be to the northward of Charles Town but 89 miles

April ye 23rd 1715.

Two or three days since came an old Indian Man from the Waccamawe Indian yt lives not far from the Wineaus Settlements he desired peace for those people, he declares that the Sarraws have ammunition from Virginia and that it is those who have done us the Mischief this Warr on the other side of Santee River.

August ye 6th 1715.

Wee knowing that it was impossible the Waccamaus should be Supplied with ammunition from the Spaniards asked them how they came by it Since this war; they answered that what little they had they got from the Sarraws who constantly used to carry Slaves, Skins and other goods taken from us (of which they had a large share) to Virginia in lieu of which they returned home with Ammunition and what else they wanted, this being a great abuse, we hope you will represent it as such for this means they have been and still are enabled to hold against us.

Carolina Augst 30th 1715


Our Negosation with Virginia you have a Relation of in our publick Lettr Nevertheless it may not be useless that I give you my thoughts on the designes and management of those Gentlemen.

They advise us that our Northern Enemies have courted them for a Trade with them, and that they have layd them under a promise of a ceasation of arms against us; and have order'd them to return with a certain Number of ye great men; ye which are to consist of all our Northern Enemies; with whom ye Collo Spotswood writes us yt hee

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thinks if hee brings all of them to a Nutralitie it will be very much to our advantage.

And I believe he designs no more, because Capt Evans whom he sent hither as commander in chief of all his Forces: Declares that all his Instructions are that he shall not Fight against our Northern Enemies, wherefore I believe that Evans will return for Virginia.

Now Sr knowing how they treated the people of No Carolina when they were at war with ye Tuskaroras, together with the fund of money layd out (and by whom) for ye carrying on of ye Indians Trayd.

I must judge they are willing to have us in a continual war with our Southern Indians that they may have the whole Trade with the Northern; Because it's certain as long as our war continues with any one party we cannot trade with the other.

Butt a far greater mischief attends any of our Enemies being brought to, or allowed to be Nuters, because under that covert they will both supply and assist our Enemies: then the sweat and Blood of our people will center in the coffers of the Indian trading company of Virginia (the wch I think they hope for). You will find in our address to ye King, we pray him to command that a war be proclaimed in Virginia with all our Enemies And I hope you will with all earnestness press it, the which being granted, we have reason to judge would soon end the war: But if the contrary and any of our Enemies stand nuter, the charge will ruin us and we must leave this our hopefull place.

April 21. 1716.

I find by an address of thanks from many merchts and others of London to Collo Spotswood Governor of Virginia he is esteemed to be our only supporter and deliveror out of the Hands of our Enemies now it must be confest that upon the arrival of Mr Middleton who was sent to desire his assistance our messenger was receaved & treated at first sight with great civility and large promises of assistance but when the terms came to be stipulated he was forced to promise that for every man they suffered to come we should return an able Negro woman instead which should continue there and make good all the time each man should be absent and that the transportation of both black and white to and from the places should be at our cost and every man so sent should have 30 per month and that we should pay what debts they ow'd in Virginia as far as that 30 per month would reach the number of men sent was

But their officers and about 10 more excepted they were the most ignorant creeping naked people that ever was seen for such a number together

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and I verily believe many of them did not know how to load a gun some of them did confess they never did fire one, the armes that were sent with them were like themselves and so broke and out of order that above three quarters of them were sent to the smiths to be mended and Mr Middleton told us that the Governor had several hundred of choise armes which he desired part of for those men, the Govr answered they were the King's and he could not spare them. He also supplyed us with some powder and shot but set such price on it in Buckskins yt we could buy powder at 4 pound per 66lb cheaper in our own town when that arrived.

When Mr Middleton arrived and let us know his negotiation we were amazed at the sending of the Negroes and could not think it by any means practicable but in lieu thereof offered the men 50s per month with which they were content so that they had 4 pound per month: the which we thought generous.

Now the Governor of Virginia taxes us with breach of contract and has upbraidingly writt to us on this foot, the whole story is too long to recite: and I suppose you are thoroly tyred with the potaige you have had &c. Whereupon know my resolution is to propose that the whole stipulation and other passages that have happened be truly copied and put in print in London that the world may see how Collo Spotswood has dealt with us and then they may judge whether his regard were not paid to our Buckskins and whether his ignorant mortals have defended us for we have sent back all that were willing to go and were glad to be eased of the charge altho we should be glad of a number of good men that our Planters might return to their Homes.


Recd 5th Dec. 1716
Read 5th Dec. 1716

Q. 96.