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escort, under Major McMahon, which only marched from Greenville, on the morning preceding, and on the same evening, deposited in Fort Recovery, the supplies it had convoyed. That occurrence could not, therefore, have led to the movement of the savages.
Judging from the extent of their encampment, and their line of march, in seventeen columns, forming a wide and extended front, and from other circumstances, it was believed, their numbers could not have been less than from fifteen hundred to two thousand warriors. It was also believed, that they were in want of provisions, as they had killed and eaten, a number of pack-horses in their encampment, the evening after the assault, and also, at their encampment on their return, seven miles from Recovery, where they remained two nights, having been much encumbered with their dead and wounded.
From the official return of Major Mills, Adjutant General of the army, it appears that twenty-two officers and noncommissioned officers were killed, and thirty wounded. Among the former, were Major McMahon, Captain Hartshorn, and Lieutenant Craig; and among the wounded, Captain Taylor of the dragoons, and Lieutenant Drake, of the legion. Captain Gibson, who commanded the Fort, behaved with great gallantry, and received the thanks of the Commander-in-chief, as did every officer and soldier of the garrison, and the escort, who were engaged in that most gallant and successful defence.
Immediately after the enemy had retreated, it was ascertained, that their loss had been very heavy, but the full extent of it was not known till it was disclosed at the treaty of Greenville. References were made to that battle, , by several of the chiefs in council, from which it was manifest, that they had not, even then, ceased to mourn the distressing losses sustained on that occasion. Having made the attack with a determination to carry the Fort, or perish in the attempt, they exposed their persons in an
unusual degree, and of course, a large number of the brayest of their chiefs and warriors, perished before they abandoned the enterprise.
From the facts afterwards communicated to the General, it was satisfactorily ascertained that there were a considerable number of British soldiers and Detroit militia engaged with the savages, on that occasion. A few days previous to that affair, the General had sent out three small parties of Chickasaw and Choctaw Indians, to take prisoners, for the purpose of obtaining information. One of those parties returned to Greenville on the 28th, and reported, that they had fallen in with a large body of Indians, at Girty's town, (crossing of the St. Mary's,) on the evening of the 27th of June, apparently bending their course towards Chillicothe, on the Miami; and that there were a great many white men with them. The other two parties, followed the trail of the hostile Indians, and were in sight, when the assault on the post commenced. They affirmed, one and all, that there were a large number of armed white men, with painted faces, whom they frequently heard conversing in English, and encouraging the Indians to persevere; and that there were also three British officers, dressed in scarlet, who appeared to be men of distinction, from the great attention and respect which was paid to them. These persons kept at a distance, in the rear of the assailants. Another strong corroborating proof, that there were British soldiers and militia in the assault, is, that a number of ounce-balls and buck-shot were found lodged in the blockhouses and stockades of the fort; and that others were picked up on the ground, fired at such a distance as not to have momentum sufficient to enter the logs.
It was supposed that the British engaged in the attack, expected to find the artillery that was lost on the fatal 4th of November, which had been hid in the ground and covered with logs, by the Indians, in the vicinity of the battlefield. This inference was supported by the fact, that dur
ing the conflict, they were seen turning over logs, and examining different places, in the neighborhood, as if searching for something. There were many reasons for believing, that they depended on that artillery, to aid in the reduction of the fort; but fortunately, most of it had been previously found by its legitimate owners, and was then employed in its defence.
James Neill, a pack-horse man in the American service, who was taken prisoner by the Indians, during the attack, and tied to a stump, about half a mile from the fort, after his return, stated to the General, that the enemy lost a great number in killed and wounded; that while he was at the stump, he saw about twenty of their dead, and a great many wounded, carried off. He understood there were fifteen hundred Indians and white men, in the attack; and on their return to the Miami, the Indians stated, that no men ever fought better than they did at Recovery; and that their party lost twice as many men in that attack, as they did at St. Clair's defeat.
Soon after the battle, two Pottawattamies, captured north of the Miami of the Lake, and two Shawanees, taken twenty miles above the mouth of the Grand Glaise, were brought into camp and examined; from whose statements it appeared most evidently, that the British had been using every possible exertion, to collect the warriors of distant nations, by the most solemn promises, that they would march and co-operate with them, against the American army. The disclosures made by those prisoners, produced a belief, that the Spaniards had also been tampering with the savages, to the prejudice of the American cause. From those discoveries, it seemed to be a natural conclusion, that the legion would meet a very mongrel body, of various colors, in the vicinity of Grand Glaise, or at Roche de Bæuf, as the case might be.
The Pottawattamie prisoners, on their examination, which was on the 5th of June, stated, that they were
captured four days after they left their homes; that their nation, at the first of the last moon, received an invitation from the British, sent by a Delaware, a Shawanee, and a Miami chief, to join them, and go to war against the Americans. That those chiefs assured them, they had been sent for that purpose; that the British, about four hundred in number, with two field pieces, were then at Roche de Beuf, on their way to war against the Americans; and that this was exclusive of the Detroit militia. They also said that a fortification had been made around Colonel McKee's house, at that place, in which they had deposited all their stores of ammunition, arms, clothing, and provisions; from which they promised to supply the Indians in abundance, provided they would join them and go to war.
They further stated, that the Chippewas, Wyandots, Shawanees, Ottawas, Delawares, and Miamies, assembled on the 1st of May, were about one thousand; that they were coming in daily, from all those nations, and that from the latest and best information received, and from their own knowledge of the number of warriors belonging to those nations, there could not be less than two thousand, then assembled; and that if the Pottawattamies had joined them, agreeably to invitation, the whole number would amount to upwards of three thousand. These warriors, they supposed, would be joined by fifteen hundred British troops and militia, according to the promise of Governor Simcoe. They also said, that the Indians intended to attack the legion, about the last of that moon, or the beginning of the next; that Governor Simcoe, the Great Man who lived at Niagara, sent for the Pottawattamies, and promised them arms, munition, provisions, and clothing, and every thing they wanted, provided they would join him; that he had sent them the same message during the preceding winter, and again on the first of the last moon.
They added, that he thanked them for their past services, and declared he would help them to fight, and ren
der them all the service in his power—that all the speeches they had received from him, were as red as blood—that the wampum and feathers and war pipes and hatchets, were painted red—and finally, that their tribe had received four different invitations, from Governor Simcoe, to join in the war; the last of which was on the first of the last moon, when the Governor promised to join them, with fifteen hundred of his warriors.
The Shawanees, who had been captured on the 22d of June, stated that five moons had passed, since they left the Grand Glaise—that they belonged to a party of twenty, who had been hunting all the spring, on the waters of the Wabash, nearly opposite the mouth of the Kentucky river, and were on their return when taken—that about half their party had gone on before them, and the remainder were coming on slowly; hunting as they came—that they had stolen about fifty horses from the people of Kentucky, on Salt river, during the spring and summer—that they only killed one man, and took no prisoners—that the man was killed by a white interpreter, belonging to their party—that they themselves had five horses loaded with deer, and bear-skins, and jerked venison—that on their way in, they met with a party of four Indians, three of them Delawares and one a Pottawattamie, who were then on their way to Big Bone Lick, to steal horses—that this party informed them, that all the Indians on White river were sent for, to come immediately to Grand Glaise, where the warriors of several nations were assembled—that the chiefs were then in council, and would not let their warriors go out-saying, that they could not depend on the British for effectual support—that they were always setting the Indians on, like dogs after game; pressing them to go to war, and kill the Americans, but did not help them—and, that, unless they would turn out, they were determined to make peace; and not be any longer amused with empty promises.
They further stated, that the Shawanees had three hun