Documenting the American South Logo
Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from Edward Winston to Thomas Burke
Winston, Edward
July 20, 1781
Volume 22, Pages 549-550


Cross Creek, July 20th, 1781.


On the 15th inst. I arrived here from the Assembly; found Col. Murphy, from Pee Dee with 150 Horse, who came to this Place to join our County to go against McNeil’s party on Drowning Creek. We wrote Col. Robeson, who raised the County of Bladen, Col. Murphy with his Horse, Col. Robeson with his, I being ordered by Col. Emmett with about 45, in all 268 Horse. Met on Rock Fish, where we learnt that the Tories, under the Command of Duncan Ray, was at McFall’s Mill, about 30 Miles from this Town, and is said is six or seven Hundred strong, but having greater confidence in our strength than their number, we made preparation for getting around them, but found that the men from Pee Dee could not continue more than two or three days, when less than ten or fifteen days could not have answered any good purpose; nor could we persuade them to continue any time with us, that it made it the height of imprudence to have proceeded any further against them. Major Richardson, who was a prisoner with them some short time, since assured us that they were disposed to treat with us on terms for a cessation of Arms, that they might remain quiet. They made him promise to use his endeavours to enter into some such Treaty. The great uncertainty when we shall receive any Assistance, and the situation of the Counties, surrounded on all sides with Enemies, we thought it to the interest of the friends of the Country to endeavour by some instrument of writing to tie their hands, and in some Meausre trust to their Honor for our safety, for which purpose we sent out a flag. A Copy of which I have furnished Col. Emmett, together with Ray’s Answer, and wish for your Excellency’s immediate Instructions, as we shall not attempt to do any thing final until we hear from you. Gen’l Marian has entered into a Treaty with them for six Months,

-------------------- page 550 --------------------
and I am told to good purpose. As Col. Emmett writes, he will lay before your Excellency what has passed between Ray and us. I shall add nothing more than I am with all due respect

Your Excellency’s Obedient Servant,

From Capt. Winston, July 20th inst. Rec’d 30th and answered.