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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Richard Caswell to Alexander McGillivray
Caswell, Richard, 1729-1789
February 24, 1787
Volume 20, Pages 619-620

(From Executive Letter Book.)

State of No. Carolina, Kinston, 24th Feb., ’87.


The Correspondence between you and Anthony Bledsoe & James Robertson, Esquires, of Cumberland, has been laid before me as Governor of the State and on Considering the same I am induced to write you on the subject.

The State of our Western Country was laid before the General Assembly in their late Session held at Fayetteville in the months of November, December & January last, who expressed a concern that any of the Citizens of this State should have given your people any just cause of Complaint by their encroachments upon the Hunting grounds of the Creek nation. Whatever may have been the conduct of a few individuals you may be assured that they have not been Authorised or Countenanced by the State to Commit any trespasses on or infringe the rights of your people; on the Contrary we are disposed on all occasions to shew them all the friendship in our power and to demonstrate the same by every pacific Act consistent with our Rights and the Honor and dignity of a free, sovereign and Independent people. On being informed you had entered into a Pacific Treaty with our Brethren of the State of Georgia we judged it necessary to send a delegation from this State to treat with your people, supposing from thence you would be as friendly disposed towards us as your other neighbors, our friends and Brethren of Georgia, & I take upon me to assure you that nothing shall be done under the authority of the State respecting your people but what shall be strictly

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Consistent with the Ties of Friendship unless your people from their own conduct bring on a different mode of Proceedure, and I request you will be pleased to direct that in case persons supposed to be Citizens of this State do make encroachments or Trespasses on the Hunting ground of your people, Complaints may be lodged with the Magistrates or leading people of our State nearest the place where such irregularities may be suggested to have been Committed, and I promise, on the part of the State, ample satisfaction shall be made to the injured where the same is actually made appear to have been done by our people. Such a mode as this being pursued will make the peace between us lasting, whereas the shedding of Blood by way of retaliation, too much practiced by the Indians, may be a means of a Tedious and Bloody War.

Our settlement on the Cumberland is young and altho’ the Inhabitants are Brave and generally Good Warriors, their numbers being small has been an inducement to some of the Neighbouring Indians to fall upon their defenceless habitations and murder a few of the people; therefore the Assembly for their protection, as well as that of our Western Country in General, have ordered a Body of men to be raised and marched to that Country. This I thought it necessary to apprise you of to prevent an Idea being taken up that we mean to carry on a War with any particular Nation, our design being only to correct such of any Nation who shall offer violence to our Settlers in their peaceable habitations. This with the Blessing of God, I have no doubt we shall have strength sufficient to effect.

I shall esteem it a favor to be Honored with a Letter in answer whenever it may suit with your Convenience.

I am Sir, Very respectfully,
Your most obedient serv’t.,