Part 4 out of 4
the cost of thirty-six pounds, one shilling, and sixpence, in Massachusetts
currency, which the town repaid him, his fortifications being of public
utility as a place of refuge for families in case of attack. [Footnote:
Temple and Sheldon, _History of Northfield_, 237, give the items from
the original account. This is one of the best of the innumerable
town-histories of New England.] Northfield was a place notoriously
dangerous, and military methods were in vogue there in season and out of
season. Thus, by a vote of the town, the people were called to the Sunday
sermon by beat of drum, and Eleazer Holton was elected to sound the call in
consideration of one pound and ten shillings a year, the drum being hired
of Ensign Field, its fortunate possessor, for the farther sum of three
shillings. This was in the earlier days of Northfield. In 1734 the Sunday
drum-beat was stopped, and the worshippers were summoned by the less
obstreperous method of "hanging out a flagg," for the faithful discharge of
which function Daniel Wright received in 1744 one pound and five shillings.
[Footnote: Temple and Sheldon, _History of Northfield_, 218.]
The various fortifications, public and private, were garrisoned, sometimes
by the owner and his neighbors, sometimes by men in pay of the provincial
Assembly. As was to be expected from a legislative body undertaking warlike
operations, the work of defence was but indifferently conducted. John
Stoddard, the village magnate of Northampton, was charged, among the rest
of his multifarious employments, with the locating and construction of
forts; Captain Ephraim Williams was assigned to the general command on the
western frontier, with headquarters at Fort Shirley and afterwards at Fort
Massachusetts; and Major Israel Williams, of Hatfield, was made commissary.
At Northfield dwelt the Reverend Benjamin Doolittle, minister, apothecary,
physician, and surgeon of the village; for he had studied medicine no less
than theology. His parishioners thought that his cure of bodies encroached
on his cure of souls, and requested him to confine his attention to his
spiritual charge; to which he replied that he could not afford it, his
salary as minister being seventy-five pounds in irredeemable Massachusetts
paper, while his medical and surgical practice brought him full four
hundred a year. He offered to comply with the wishes of his flock if they
would add that amount to his salary,--which they were not prepared to do,
and the minister continued his heterogeneous labors as before.
As the position of his house on the village street seems to have been
regarded as strategic, the town voted to fortify it with a blockhouse and a
stockade, for the benefit both of the occupant and of all the villagers.
This was accordingly done, at the cost of eighteen pounds, seven shillings,
and sixpence for the blockhouse, and a farther charge for the stockade; and
thenceforth Mr. Doolittle could write his sermons and mix his doses in
peace. To his other callings he added that of historiographer. When, after
a ministry of thirty-six years, the thrifty pastor was busied one day with
hammer and nails in mending the fence of his yard, he suddenly dropped dead
from a stroke of heart-disease,--to the grief of all Northfield; and his
papers being searched, a record was found in his handwriting of the inroads
of the enemy that had happened in his time on or near the Massachusetts
border. Being rightly thought worthy of publication, it was printed at
Boston in a dingy pamphlet, now extremely rare, and much prized by
antiquarians. [Footnote: _A short Narrative of Mischief done by the
French and Indian Enemy on the Western Frontiers of the Province of the
Massachusetts Bay; from the Beginning of the French War, proclaimed by the
King of France, March 15th, 1743-4; and by the King of Great Britain, March
29th, 1744, to August 2nd, 1748. Drawn up by the Rev. Mr. Doolittle, of
Northfield, in the County of Hampshire; and found among his Manuscripts
after his Death. And at the Desire of some is now Published, with some
small Additions to render it more perfect. Boston; Printed and sold by S.
Kneeland, in Queen Street. MDCCL._ The facts above given concerning Mr.
Doolittle are drawn from the excellent _History of Northfield_ by
Temple and Sheldon, and the introduction to the _Particular History of
the Five Years' French and Indian War,_ by S. G. Drake.]
Appended to it are the remarks of the author on the conduct of the war. He
complains that plans are changed so often that none of them take effect;
that terms of enlistment are so short that the commissary can hardly serve
out provisions to the men before their time is expired; that neither bread,
meat, shoes, nor blankets are kept on hand for an emergency, so that the
enemy escape while the soldiers are getting ready to pursue them; that the
pay of a drafted man is so small that twice as much would not hire a
laborer to take care of his farm in his absence; and that untried and unfit
persons are commissioned as officers: in all of which strictures there is
no doubt much truth.
Mr. Doolittle's rueful narrative treats mainly of miscellaneous murders and
scalpings, interesting only to the sufferers and their friends; but he also
chronicles briefly a formidable inroad that still holds a place in New
It may be remembered that Shirley had devised a plan for capturing Fort
Frédéric, or Crown Point, built by the French at the narrows of Lake
Champlain, and commanding ready access for warparties to New York and New
The approach of D'Anville's fleet had defeated the plan; but rumors of it
had reached Canada, and excited great alarm. Large bodies of men were
ordered to Lake Champlain to protect the threatened fort. The two brothers
De Muy were already on the lake with a numerous party of Canadians and
Indians, both Christian and heathen, and Rigaud de Vaudreuil, town-major of
Three Rivers, was ordered to follow with a still larger force, repel any
English attack, or, if none should be made, take the offensive and strike a
blow at the English frontier. [Footnote: French writers always call him
Rigaud, to distinguish him from his brother, Pierre Rigaud de
Vaudreuil-Cavagnal, afterwards governor of Canada, who is usually mentioned
as Vaudreuil.] On the 3d of August, Rigaud left Montreal with a fleet of
canoes carrying what he calls his army, and on the 12th he encamped on the
east side of the lake, at the mouth of Otter Creek. There was rain,
thunder, and a violent wind all night; but the storm ceased at daybreak,
and, embarking again, they soon saw the octagonal stone tower of Fort
The party set up their tents and wigwams near the fort, and on the morning
of the 16th the elder De Muy arrived with a reinforcement of sixty
Frenchmen and a band of Indians. They had just returned from an incursion
towards Albany, and reported that all was quiet in those parts, and that
Fort Frédéric was in no danger. Now, to their great satisfaction, Rigaud
and his band saw themselves free to take the offensive. The question was,
where to strike. The Indians held council after council, made speech after
speech, and agreed on nothing. Rigaud gave them a wampum-belt, and told
them that he meant to attack Corlaer,--that is, Schenectady; at which they
seemed well pleased, and sang war-songs all night. In the morning they
changed their minds, and begged him to call the whole army to a council for
debating the question. It appeared that some of them, especially the
Iroquois converts of Caughnawaga, disapproved of attacking Schenectady,
because some of their Mohawk relatives were always making visits there, and
might be inadvertently killed by the wild Western Indians of Rigaud's
party. Now all was doubt again, for as Indians are unstable as water, it
was no easy task to hold them to any plan of action.
The Abenakis proposed a solution of the difficulty. They knew the New
England border well, for many of them had lived upon it before the war, on
terms of friendly intercourse with the settlers. They now drew upon the
floor of the council-room a rough map of the country, on which was seen a
certain river, and on its upper waters a fort which they recommended as a
proper object of attack. The river was that eastern tributary of the Hudson
which the French called the Kaské-kouké, the Dutch the Schaticook, and the
English the Hoosac. The fort was Fort Massachusetts, the most westerly of
the three posts lately built to guard the frontier. "My Father," said the
Abenaki spokesman to Rigaud, "it will be easy to take this fort, and make
great havoc on the lands of the English. Deign to listen to your children
and follow our advice." [Footnote: _Journal de la Campagne de Rigaud de
Vaudreuil en 1746...présenté à Monseigneur le Comte de Maurepas, Ministre
et Secrétaire d'Etat_ (written by Rigaud).] One Cadenaret, an Abenaki
chief, had been killed near Fort Massachusetts in the last spring, and his
tribesmen were keen to revenge him. Seeing his Indians pleased with the
proposal to march for the Hoosac, Rigaud gladly accepted it; on which
whoops, yelps, and war-songs filled the air. Hardly, however, was the party
on its way when the Indians changed their minds again, and wanted to attack
Saratoga; but Rigaud told them that they had made their choice and must
abide by it, to which they assented, and gave him no farther trouble.
On the 20th of August they all embarked and paddled southward, passed the
lonely promontory where Fort Ticonderoga was afterwards built, and held
their course till the lake dwindled to a mere canal creeping through the
weedy marsh then called the Drowned Lands. Here, nine summers later, passed
the flotilla of Baron Dieskau, bound to defeat and ruin by the shores of
Lake George. Rigaud stopped at a place known as East Bay, at the mouth of
a stream that joins Wood Creek, just north of the present town of
Whitehall. Here he left the younger De Muy, with thirty men, to guard the
canoes. The rest of the party, guided by a brother of the slain Cadenaret,
filed southward on foot along the base of Skene Mountain, that overlooks
Whitehall. They counted about seven hundred men, of whom five hundred were
French, and a little above two hundred were Indians. [Footnote: "Le 19,
ayant fait passer l'armée en Revue qui se trouva de 700 hommes, scavoir 500
françois environ et 200 quelques sauvages." _Journal de Rigaud_.] Some
other French reports put the whole number at eleven hundred, or even twelve
hundred, [Footnote: See _N. Y. Col. Docs._, X. 103, 132.] while
several English accounts make it eight hundred or nine hundred. The
Frenchmen of the party included both regulars and Canadians, with six
regular officers and ten cadets, eighteen militia officers, two
chaplains,--one for the whites and one for the Indians,--and a surgeon.
[Footnote: _Ibid._, X. 35.]
After a march of four days, they encamped on the 26th by a stream which ran
into the Hudson, and was no doubt the Batten Kill, known to the French as
_la rivière de Saratogue_. Being nearly opposite Saratoga, where there
was then a garrison, they changed their course, on the 27th, from south to
southeast, the better to avoid scouting-parties, which might discover their
trail and defeat their plan of surprise. Early on the next day they reached
the Hoosac, far above its mouth; and now their march was easier, "for,"
says Rigaud, "we got out of the woods and followed a large road that led up
the river." In fact, there seem to have been two roads, one on each side of
the Hoosac; for the French were formed into two brigades, one of which,
under the Sieur de la Valterie, filed along the right bank of the stream,
and the other, under the Sieur de Sabrevois, along the left; while the
Indians marched on the front, flanks, and rear. They passed deserted houses
and farms belonging to Dutch settlers from the Hudson; for the Hoosac, in
this part of its course, was in the province of New York. [Footnote: These
Dutch settlements on the Hoosac were made under what was called the "Hoosac
Patent," granted by Governor Dongan of New York in 1688. The settlements
were not begun till nearly forty years after the grant was made. For
evidence on this point I am indebted to Professor A. L. Perry, of Williams
College.] They did not stop to burn barns and houses, but they killed
poultry, hogs, a cow, and a horse, to supply themselves with meat. Before
night they had passed the New York line, and they made their camp in or
near the valley where Williamstown and Williams College now stand. Here
they were joined by the Sieurs Beaubassin and La Force, who had gone
forward, with eight Indians, to reconnoitre. Beaubassin had watched Fort
Massachusetts from a distance, and had seen a man go up into the
watch-tower, but could discover no other sign of alarm. Apparently, the
fugitive Dutch farmers had not taken pains to warn the English garrison of
the coming danger, for there was a coolness between the neighbors.
Before breaking up camp in the morning, Rigaud called the Indian chiefs
together and said to them: "My children, the time is near when we must get
other meat than fresh pork, and we will all eat it together." "Meat," in
Indian parlance, meant prisoners; and as these were valuable by reason of
the ransoms paid for them, and as the Indians had suspected that the French
meant to keep them all, they were well pleased with this figurative
assurance of Rigaud that they should have their share. [Footnote: "Mes
enfans, leur dis-je, le temps approche où il faut faire d'autre viande que
le pore frais; au reste, nous la mangerons tous eusemble; ce mot les flatta
dans la crainte qu'ils avoient qu'après la prise du fort nous ne nous
réservâmes tous les prisonniers" _Journal de Rigaud_.]
The chaplain said mass, and the party marched in a brisk rain up the
Williamstown valley, till after advancing about ten miles they encamped
again. Fort Massachusetts was only three or four miles distant. Rigaud held
a talk with the Abenaki chiefs who had acted as guides, and it was agreed
that the party should stop in the woods near the fort, make
scaling-ladders, battering-rams to burst the gates, and other things
needful for a grand assault, to take place before daylight; but their plan
came to nought through the impetuosity of the young Indians and Canadians,
who were so excited at the first glimpse of the watch-tower of the fort
that they dashed forward, as Rigaud says, "like lions." Hence one might
fairly expect to see the fort assaulted at once; but by the maxims of
forest war this would have been reprehensible rashness, and nothing of the
kind was attempted. The assailants spread to right and left, squatted
behind stumps, and opened a distant and harmless fire, accompanied with
unearthly yells and howlings.
Fort Massachusetts was a wooden enclosure formed, like the fort at Number
Four, of beams laid one upon another, and interlocked at the angles. This
wooden wall seems to have rested, not immediately upon the ground, but upon
a foundation of stone, designated by Mr. Norton, the chaplain, as the
"underpinning,"--a name usually given in New England to foundations of the
kind. At the northwest corner was a blockhouse, crowned with the
watch-tower, the sight of which had prematurely kindled the martial fire of
the Canadians and Indians. [Footnote: The term "blockhouse" was loosely
used, and was even sometimes applied to an entire fort when constructed of
hewn logs, and not of palisades. The true blockhouse of the New England
frontier was a solid wooden structure about twenty feet high, with a
projecting upper story and loopholes above and below.] This wooden
structure, at the apex of the blockhouse, served as a lookout, and also
supplied means of throwing water to extinguish fire-arrows shot upon the
roof. There were other buildings in the enclosure, especially a large
log-house on the south side, which seems to have overlooked the outer wall,
and was no doubt loopholed for musketry. On the east side there was a well,
furnished probably with one of those long well-sweeps universal in
primitive New England. The garrison, when complete, consisted of fifty-one
men under Captain Ephraim Williams, who has left his name to Williamstown
and Williams College, of the latter of which he was the founder. He was
born at Newton, near Boston; was a man vigorous in body and mind; better
acquainted with the world than most of his countrymen, having followed the
seas in his youth, and visited England, Spain, and Holland; frank and
agreeable in manners, well fitted for such a command, and respected and
loved by his men. [Footnote: See the notice of Williams in _Mass. Hist.
Coll._, VIII. 47. He was killed in the bloody skirmish that preceded the
Battle of Lake George in 1755. _Montcalm and Wolfe_, chap. ix.] When
the proposed invasion of Canada was preparing, he and some of his men went
to take part in it, and had not yet returned. The fort was left in charge
of a sergeant, John Hawks, of Deerfield, with men too few for the extent of
the works, and a supply of ammunition nearly exhausted. Canada being then
put on the defensive, the frontier forts were thought safe for a time. On
the Saturday before Rigaud's arrival, Hawks had sent Thomas Williams, the
surgeon, brother of the absent captain, to Deerfield, with a detachment of
fourteen men, to get a supply of powder and lead. This detachment reduced
the entire force, including Hawks himself and Norton, the chaplain, to
twenty-two men, half of whom were disabled with dysentery, from which few
of the rest were wholly free. [Footnote: "Lord's Day and Monday...the
sickness was very distressing.... Eleven of our men were sick, and scarcely
one of us in perfect health; almost every man was troubled with the griping
and flux." Norton, _The Redeemed Captive_.] There were also in the
fort three women and five children. [Footnote: Rigaud erroneously makes the
garrison a little larger. "La garnison se trouva de 24 hommes, entre
lesquels il y avoit un ministre, 3 femmes, et 5 enfans." The names and
residence of all the men in the fort when the attack began are preserved.
Hawks made his report to the provincial government under the title _"An
Account of the Company in his Majesty's Service under the command of Serg't
John Hawks...at Fort Massachusetts, Aug. 20_ [31, new style],
_1746._" The roll is attested on oath "Before William Williams,
_Just. Pacis._" The number of men is 22, including Hawks and Norton.
Each man brought his own gun. I am indebted to the kindness of Professor A.
L. Perry for a copy of Hawks's report, which is addressed to "the Honble.
Spencer Phipps, Esq., Lieut. Gov'r and Commander in Chief [and] the
Hon'ble. his Majesty's Council and House of Representatives in General
The site of Fort Massachusetts is now a meadow by the banks of the Hoosac.
Then it was a rough clearing, encumbered with the stumps and refuse of the
primeval forest, whose living hosts stood grimly around it, and spread,
untouched by the axe, up the sides of the neighboring Saddleback Mountain.
The position of the fort was bad, being commanded by high ground, from
which, as the chaplain tells us, "the enemy could shoot over the north side
into the middle of the parade,"--for which serious defect, John Stoddard,
of Northampton, legist, capitalist, colonel of militia, and "Superintendent
of Defence," was probably answerable. These frontier forts were, however,
often placed on low ground with a view to an abundant supply of water, fire
being the most dreaded enemy in Indian warfare. [Footnote: When I visited
the place as a college student, no trace of the fort was to be seen except
a hollow, which may have been the remains of a cellar, and a thriving
growth of horse-radish,--a relic of the garrison garden. My friend Dr. D.
D. Slade has given an interesting account of the spot in the _Magazine of
American History_ for October, 1888.]
Sergeant Hawks, the provisional commander, was, according to tradition, a
tall man with sun-burnt features, erect, spare, very sinewy and strong, and
of a bold and resolute temper. He had need to be so, for counting every man
in the fort, lay and clerical, sick and well, he was beset by more than
thirty times his own number; or, counting only his effective men, by more
than sixty times,--and this at the lowest report of the attacking force. As
there was nothing but a log fence between him and his enemy, it was clear
that they could hew or burn a way through it, or climb over it with no
surprising effort of valor. Rigaud, as we have seen, had planned a general
assault under cover of night, but had been thwarted by the precipitancy of
the young Indians and Canadians. These now showed no inclination to depart
from the cautious maxims of forest warfare. They made a terrific noise,
but when they came within gunshot of the fort, it was by darting from stump
to stump with a quick, zigzag movement that made them more difficult to hit
than birds on the wing. The best moment for a shot was when they reached a
stump, and stopped for an instant to duck and hide behind it. By seizing
this fleeting opportunity, Hawks himself put a bullet into the breast of an
Abenaki chief from St. Francis,--"which ended his days," says the chaplain.
In view of the nimbleness of the assailants, a charge of buckshot was found
more to the purpose than a bullet. Besides the slain Abenaki, Rigaud
reports sixteen Indians and Frenchmen wounded, [Footnote: "L'Ennemi me tua
un abenakis et me blessa 16 hommes, tant Iroquois qu'Abenaquis, nipissings
et françois." _Journal de Rigaud_.]--which, under the circumstances,
was good execution for ten farmers and a minister; for Chaplain Norton
loaded and fired with the rest. Rigaud himself was one of the wounded,
having been hit in the arm and sent to the rear, as he stood giving orders
on the rocky hill about forty rods from the fort. Probably it was a chance
shot, since, though rifles were invented long before, they were not yet in
general use, and the yeoman garrison were armed with nothing but their own
smooth-bore hunting-pieces, not to be trusted at long range. The supply of
ammunition had sunk so low that Hawks was forced to give the discouraging
order not to fire except when necessary to keep the enemy in check, or when
the chance of hitting him should be unusually good. Such of the sick men as
were strong enough aided the defence by casting bullets and buckshot.
The outrageous noise lasted till towards nine in the evening, when the
assailants greeted the fort with a general war-whoop, and repeated it three
or four times; then a line of sentinels was placed around it to prevent
messengers from carrying the alarm to Albany or Deerfield. The evening was
dark and cloudy. The lights of a camp could be seen by the river towards
the southeast, and those of another near the swamp towards the west. There
was a sound of axes, as if the enemy were making scaling-ladders for a
night assault; but it was found that they were cutting fagots to burn the
wall. Hawks ordered every tub and bucket to be filled with water, in
preparation for the crisis. Two men, John Aldrich and Jonathan Bridgman,
had been wounded, thus farther reducing the strength of the defenders. The
chaplain says: "Of those that were in health, some were ordered to keep the
watch, and some lay down and endeavored to get some rest, lying down in our
clothes with our arms by us.... We got little or no rest; the enemy
frequently raised us by their hideous outcries, as though they were about
to attack us. The latter part of the night I kept the watch."
Rigaud spent the night in preparing for a decisive attack, "being resolved
to open trenches two hours before sunrise, and push them to the foot of the
palisade, so as to place fagots against it, set them on fire, and deliver
the fort a prey to the fury of the flames." [Footnote: "Je passay la nuit à
conduire l'ouvrage auquel j'avois destiné le jour précédent, résolu à faire
ouvrir la tranchée deux heures avant le lever du soleil, et de la pousser
jusqu'au pied de la palissade, pour y placer les fascines, y appliquer
l'artifice, et livrer le fort en proye à la fureur du feu." _Journal de
Rigaud_. He mistakes in calling the log wall of the fort a palisade.] It
began to rain, and he determined to wait till morning. That the commander
of seven hundred French and Indians should resort to such elaborate devices
to subdue a sergeant, seven militia-men, and a minister,--for this was now
the effective strength of the besieged,--was no small compliment to the
spirit of the defence.
The firing was renewed in the morning, but there was no attempt to open
trenches by daylight. Two men were sent up into the watchtower, and about
eleven o'clock one of them, Thomas Knowlton, was shot through the head.
The number of effectives was thus reduced to eight, including the chaplain.
Up to this time the French and English witnesses are in tolerable accord;
but now there is conflict of evidence. Rigaud says that when he was about
to carry his plan of attack into execution, he saw a white flag hung out,
and sent the elder De Muy, with Montigny and D'Auteuil, to hear what the
English commandant--whose humble rank he nowhere mentions--had to say. On
the other hand, Norton, the chaplain, says that about noon the French
"desired to parley," and that "we agreed to it." He says farther that the
sergeant, with himself and one or two others, met Rigaud outside the gate,
and that the French commander promised "good quarter" to the besieged if
they would surrender, with the alternative of an assault if they would not.
This account is sustained by Hawks, who says that at twelve o'clock an
Indian came forward with a flag of truce, and that he, Hawks, with two or
three others, went to meet Rigaud, who then offered honorable terms of
capitulation. [Footnote: _Journal of Sergeant Hawks_, cited by William
L. Stone, _Life and Times of Sir William Johnson_, I. 227. What seems
conclusive is that the French permitted Norton to nail to a post of the
fort a short account of its capture, in which it is plainly stated that the
first advances were made by Rigaud.] The sergeant promised an answer within
two hours; and going back to the fort with his companions, examined their
means of defence. He found that they had left but three or four pounds of
gunpowder, and about as much lead. Hawks called a council of his effective
men. Norton prayed for divine aid and guidance, and then they fell to
considering the situation. "Had we all been in health, or had there been
only those eight of us that were in health, I believe every man would
willingly have stood it out to the last. For my part, I should," writes
the manful chaplain. But besides the sick and wounded, there were three
women and five children, who, if the fort were taken by assault, would no
doubt be butchered by the Indians, but who might be saved by a
capitulation. Hawks therefore resolved to make the best terms he could. He
had defended his post against prodigious odds for twenty-eight hours.
Rigaud promised that all in the fort should be treated with humanity as
prisoners of war, and exchanged at the first opportunity. He also promised
that none of them should be given to the Indians, though he had lately
assured his savage allies that they should have their share of the
At three o'clock the principal French officers were admitted into the fort,
and the French flag was raised over it. The Indians and Canadians were
excluded; on which some of the Indians pulled out several of the stones
that formed the foundation of the wall, crawled through, opened the gate,
and let in the whole crew. They raised a yell when they saw the blood of
Thomas Knowlton trickling from the watch-tower where he had been shot, then
rushed up to where the corpse lay, brought it down, scalped it, and cut off
the head and arms. The fort was then plundered, set on fire, and burned to
The prisoners were led to the French camp; and here the chaplain was
presently accosted by one Doty, Rigaud's interpreter, who begged him to
persuade some of the prisoners to go with the Indians. Norton replied that
it had been agreed that they should all remain with the French; and that to
give up any of them to the Indians would be a breach of the capitulation.
Doty then appealed to the men themselves, who all insisted on being left
with the French, according to the terms stipulated. Some of them, however,
were given to the Indians, who, after Rigaud's promise to them, could have
been pacified in no other way. His fault was in making a stipulation that
he could not keep. Hawks and Norton, with all the women and children,
remained in the French camp.
Hearing that men were expected from Deerfield to take the places of the
sick, Rigaud sent sixty Indians to cut them off. They lay in wait for the
English reinforcement, which consisted of nineteen men, gave them a close
fire, shot down fifteen of them, and captured the rest. [Footnote: One
French account says that the Indians failed to meet the English party.
_N. Y. Col. Docs,_ X. 35.] This or another party of Rigaud's Indians
pushed as far as Deerfield and tried to waylay the farmers as they went to
their work on a Monday morning. The Indians hid in a growth of alder-bushes
along the edge of a meadow where men were making hay, accompanied by some
children. One Ebenezer Hawks, shooting partridges, came so near the
ambushed warriors that they could not resist the temptation of killing and
scalping him. This alarmed the haymakers and the children, who ran for
their lives towards a mill on a brook that entered Deerfield River,
fiercely pursued by about fifty Indians, who caught and scalped a boy named
Amsden. Three men, Allen, Sadler, and Gillet, got under the bank of the
river and fired on the pursuers. Allen and Gillet were soon killed, but
Sadler escaped unhurt to an island. Three children of Allen--Eunice,
Samuel, and Caleb--were also chased by the Indians, who knocked down Eunice
with a tomahawk, but were in too much haste to stop and scalp her, and she
lived to a good old age. Her brother Samuel was caught and dragged off, but
Caleb ran into a field of tall maize, and escaped.
The firing was heard in the village, and a few armed men, under Lieutenant
Clesson, hastened to the rescue; but when they reached the spot the Indians
were gone, carrying the boy Samuel Allen with them, and leaving two of
their own number dead. Clesson, with such men as he had, followed their
trail up Deerfield River, but could not overtake the light-footed savages.
Meanwhile, the prisoners at Fort Massachusetts spent the first night, well
guarded, in the French and Indian camps. In the morning, Norton,
accompanied by a Frenchman and several Indians, was permitted to nail to
one of the charred posts of the fort a note to tell what had happened to
him and his companions. [Footnote: The note was as follows: "August 20 [31,
new style], 1746. These are to inform you that yesterday, about 9 of the
clock, we were besieged by, as they say, seven hundred French and Indians.
They have wounded two men and killed one Knowlton. The General de Vaudreuil
desired capitulations, and we were so distressed that we complied with his
terms. We are the French's prisoners, and have it under the general's hand
that every man, woman, and child shall be exchanged for French prisoners."]
The victors then marched back as they had come, along the Hoosac road.
They moved slowly, encumbered as they were by the sick and wounded. Rigaud
gave the Indians presents, to induce them to treat their prisoners with
humanity. Norton was in charge of De Muy, and after walking four miles sat
down with him to rest in Williamstown valley. There was a yell from the
Indians in the rear. "I trembled," writes Norton, "thinking they had
murdered some of our people, but was filled with admiration when I saw all
our prisoners come up with us, and John Aldrich carried on the back of his
Indian master." Aldrich had been shot in the foot, and could not walk. "We
set out again, and had gone but a little way before we came up with Josiah
Reed." Reed was extremely ill, and could go no farther. Norton thought that
the Indians would kill him, instead of which one of them carried him on his
back. They were said to have killed him soon after, but there is good
reason to think that he died of disease. "I saw John Perry's wife," pursues
the chaplain; "she complained that she was almost ready to give out." The
Indians threatened her, but Hawks spoke in her behalf to Rigaud, who
remonstrated with them, and they afterwards treated her well. The wife of
another soldier, John Smead, was near her time, and had lingered behind.
The French showed her great kindness. "Some of them made a seat for her to
sit upon, and brought her to the camp, where, about ten o'clock, she was
graciously delivered of a daughter, and was remarkably well.... Friday:
this morning I baptized John Smead's child. He called its name
_Captivity_." The French made a litter of poles, spread over it a
deer-skin and a bear-skin, on which they placed the mother and child, and
so carried them forward. Three days after, there was a heavy rain, and the
mother was completely drenched, but suffered no harm, though "Miriam, the
wife of Moses Scott, hereby catched a grievous cold." John Perry was
relieved of his pack, so that he might help his wife and carry her when her
strength failed. Several horses were found at the farms along the way, and
the sick Benjamin Simons and the wounded John Aldrich were allowed to use
two of them. Rarely, indeed, in these dismal border-raids were prisoners
treated so humanely; and the credit seems chiefly due to the efforts of
Rigaud and his officers. The hardships of the march were shared by the
victors, some of whom were sorely wounded; and four Indians died within a
"I divided my army between the two sides of the Kaskékouké" (Hoosac), says
Rigaud, "and ordered them to do what I had not permitted to be done before
we reached Fort Massachusetts. Every house was set on fire, and numbers of
domestic animals of all sorts were killed. French and Indians vied with
each other in pillage, and I made them enter the [valleys of all the]
little streams that flow into the Kaskékouké and lay waste everything
there.... Wherever we went we made the same havoc, laid waste both sides of
the river, through twelve leagues of fertile country, burned houses, barns,
stables, and even a meeting-house,--in all, above two hundred
establishments,--killed all the cattle, and ruined all the crops. Such,
Monseigneur, was the damage I did our enemies during the eight or nine days
I was in their country." [Footnote: _Journal de Riguad._] As the Dutch
settlers had escaped, there was no resistance.
The French and their allies left the Hoosac at the point where they had
reached it, and retraced their steps northward through the forest, where
there was an old Indian trail. Recrossing the Batten Kill, or "River of
Saratoga," and some branches of Wood Creek, they reached the place where
they had left their canoes, and found them safe. Rigaud says: "I gave leave
to the Indians, at their request, to continue their fighting and ravaging,
in small parties, towards Albany, Schenectady, Deerfield, Saratoga, or
wherever they pleased, and I even gave them a few officers and cadets to
lead them." These small ventures were more or less successful, and
produced, in due time, a good return of scalps.
The main body, now afloat again, sailed and paddled northward till they
reached Crown Point. Rigaud rejoiced at finding a haven of refuge, for his
wounded arm was greatly inflamed: "and it was time I should reach a place
of repose." He and his men encamped by the fort and remained there for some
time. An epidemic, apparently like that at Fort Massachusetts, had broken
out among them, and great numbers were seriously ill.
Norton was lodged in a French house on the east side of the lake, at what
is now called Chimney Point; and one day his guardian, De Muy, either
thinking to impress him with the strength of the place, or with an amusing
confidence in the minister's incapacity for making inconvenient military
observations, invited him to visit the fort. He accepted the invitation,
crossed over with the courteous officer, and reports the ramparts to have
been twenty feet thick, about twenty feet high, and mounted with above
twenty cannon. The octagonal tower which overlooked the ramparts, and
answered in some sort to the donjon of a feudal castle, was a bomb-proof
structure in vaulted masonry, of the slaty black limestone of the
neighborhood, three stories in height, and armed with nine or ten cannon,
besides a great number of patereroes,--a kind of pivot-gun much like a
swivel. [Footnote: Kalm also describes the fort and its tower. Little trace
of either now remains. Amherst demolished them in 1759, when he built the
larger fort, of which the ruins still stand on the higher ground behind the
site of its predecessor.]
In due time the prisoners reached Montreal, whence they were sent to
Quebec; and in the course of the next year those who remained alive were
exchanged and returned to New England. [Footnote: Of the twenty-two men in
the fort when attacked, one, Knowlton, was killed by a bullet; one, Reed,
died just after the surrender; ten died in Canada, and ten returned home.
_Report of Sergeant Hawks._] Mrs. Smead and her infant daughter
"Captivity" died in Canada, and, by a singular fatality, her husband had
scarcely returned home when he was waylaid and killed by Indians. Fort
Massachusetts was soon rebuilt by the province, and held its own
thenceforth till the war was over. Sergeant Hawks became a
lieutenant-colonel, and took a creditable part in the last French war.
For two years after the incursion of Rigaud the New England borders were
scourged with partisan warfare, bloody, monotonous, and futile, with no
event that needs recording, and no result beyond a momentary check to the
progress of settlement. At length, in July, 1748, news came that the chief
contending powers in Europe had come to terms of agreement, and in the next
October the Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle was signed. Both nations were tired of
the weary and barren conflict, with its enormous cost and its vast entail
of debt. It was agreed that conquests should be mutually restored. The
chief conquest of England was Louisbourg, with the island of Cape
Breton,--won for her by the farmers and fishermen of New England. When the
preliminaries of peace were under discussion, Louis XV. had demanded the
restitution of the lost fortress; and George II. is said to have replied
that it was not his to give, having been captured by the people of Boston.
[Footnote: _N.Y. Col. Docs._, X. 147.] But his sense of justice was
forced to yield to diplomatic necessity, for Louisbourg was the
indispensable price of peace. To the indignation of the Northern provinces,
it was restored to its former owners. "The British ministers," says
Smollett, "gave up the important island of Cape Breton in exchange for a
petty factory in the East Indies" (Madras), and the King deigned to send
two English noblemen to the French court as security for the bargain.
Peace returned to the tormented borders; the settlements advanced again,
and the colonists found a short breathing space against the great
conclusive struggle of the Seven Years' War.
CHAPTER XVII. ENGLAND HAS NO RIGHTFUL TITLES TO NORTH AMERICA, EXCEPT THOSE
WHICH MAY BE GRANTED HER BY FRANCE.
_Second Memoire concernant les limites des Colonies presenté en 1720, par
Bobé prêtre de la congregation de la Mission. à Versailles._ Archives
(_Extracts, printed literatim._)
"L'année Dernier 1719 je presenté un Memoire Concernant les prétensions
reciproques de la grande bretagne et de la france par Raport aux Colonies
des deux Nations dans L'Amerique, et au Reglement des limites des dites
"Je ne repete pas ce que j'ay dit dans ce memoire, je prie seulement que
l'on pese bien tout ce que j'y dis pour Aneantir les prétensions des
Anglois, et pour les Convaincre, s'ils veullent être de bonne foy, qu'elles
sont des plus mal fondées, trés Exorbitantes, et mêmes injustes, qu'ayant
usurpé sur La france presque tout ce qu'ils possedent en Amerique, ils
deveroient luy rendre au lieu de luy demander, et qu'ils deveroient estimer
Comme un tres grand avantage pour Eux, la Compensation que j'y propose pour
finir cette affaire, laqu'elle, sans cette Compensation, renaitra toujours
jusqu'a ce qu'enfin la france soit rentrée en paisible possession de tout
ce qui luy appartient légitimement, et dont on ne L'a depoüilleé que par la
force et La malheureuse Conjoncture des tems, qui sans doute tôt ou tard
luy seront plus favorables.
"Il Est surprenant que les Anglois entendus Comme ils sont par Raport à
leurs Interests, ne fassent pas attention qu'il Leurs est infiniment plus
Avantageux de s'assurer, par un traité raisonnable, la tranquille et
perpetuelle possession des payis ou ils etoient établis avant la paix
D'utrecht, que de vouloir profiter des Conjonctures pour oster aux françois
des payis qu'ils ne Cederont jamais de bon Coeur, et dont ils se
rempareront quand ils trouveront l'occasion favorable pour Cela, se
persuadant qu'il leur sera alors permis de reprendre par force, ce que par
force on leurs à pris, et ce qu'ils ont été obligé de Ceder a Utrecht; et
même de reprendre au moins une partie des payis que l'angleterre à usurpez
sur la france, qui ne les à jamais cedez par aucun traité que je scache....
"Jean Verazan par ordre de françois 1er fit La decouverte de tous les
payis et Costes qui sont Entre le 33e et le 47e Degre de latitude, et y
fit deux voyages dont le dernier fut en 1523 et par ordre et au nom du dit
Roy francois 1er il prit possession de toute cette Coste et de tous ces
payis, bien long tems avant que les Anglois y Eussent Eté.
"L'an 1562 Les françois s'établirent dans La Caroline. Champlain à La fin
de la relation de ses voyages fait un chapitre exprez Dans lequel il
"1. Que La france a pris possession de toutes les Costes et payis depuis la
floride inclusivement jusqu'au fleuve St. Laurent inclusivem't, avant tout
autre prince chrêtien.
2. Que nos roys ont eu, dez le Commancement des decouvertes des lieutenans
generaux Dans ces payis et Costes.
3. Que Les françois les ont habitez avant les Anglois.
4. Que Les prétensions des Anglois sont Mal fondées.
"La Lecture De ce chapitre fait voir que Champlain prouve invinciblement
tous ces chefs, et de maniere que les Anglois n'ont rien de bon à y
repondre, de sorte que s'ils veullent être de bonne foy, ils doivent
Convenir que tous ces payis appartiennent Légitimement à la france qu'ils
s'en sont emparez et qu'ils les Retiennent Contre toute justice....
"Il Est A Remarquer que quoyque par le traité de St. germain l'angleterre
dut restituer tout ce qu'elle Avoit occupé dans la Nouvelle france, et par
Consequent toute la Coste depuis baston jusqu'a la virginie inclusivement
(car alors les Anglois ne s'etoient pas encore emparez de la Caroline)
laqu'elle Coste est Certainement partie de la Nouvelle france, les Anglois
ne l'ont pas Cependant restituée et la gardent encore a present Contre la
teneur du traité de St. Germain, quoy que la france ne L'ait point Cedée a
L'angleterre ni par le dit traité ni par Aucun Autre que je scache.
"Cecy Merite La plus serieuse attention de la france, et qu'elle fasse
Entendre serieusement aux Anglois que par le traité de St. germain ils se
sont obligez de luy rendre toutte cette Coste, qui incontestablement est
partie de la Nouvelle france, Comme je L'ay prouvé cy devant et encore plus
au long dans mon 1r memoire et Comme le prouvent Verazan, Champlain,
Denis, et toutes les plus ancienes Cartes de l'amerique septentrionale....
"Or Le Commun Consentement de toute l'Europe est de depeindre la Nouvelle
france S'étendant au moins au 35e et 36e degrez de latitude Ainsy qu'il
appert par les mappemondes imprimées en Espagne, Italie, hollande,
flandres, allemagne Et Angleterre même, Sinon depuis que les Anglois se
sont Emparez des Costes de la Nouvelle france, ou est L'Acadie, Etechemains
L'almouchicois, et la grande riviere de St. l'aurens, ou ils ont imposé a
leur fantaisie des Noms de nouvelle Angleterre, Ecosse, et autres, mais il
est mal aisé de pouvoir Effacer une chose qui est Connué De toute la
Chretienteé D'ou je Conclus,
"1. Quavant L'Usurpation faite par les Anglois, toute Cette Coste jusqu'au
35e Degre s'appelloit Nouvelle france, laquelle Comprenoit outre plusieurs
autres provinces, l'Etechemains, L'almouchicois, et L'acadie....
"Les Anglois Doivent remettre à La france le Port Royal, et La france doit
insister vigoureusement sur cette restitution, et ordonner aux françois de
Port Royal, Des Mines, et de Beaubassin, et autres lieux De reconaitre sa
Majesté tres Chretiene pour leur Souverain, et leur deffendre d'obeir a
aucun autre; de plus Commander a tous ces lieux et payis, et a toute la
partie Septentrionale de la Peninsule, ainsi qu'aux payis des Almouchicois
et des Etechemains [_Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts_], de
Reconaitre le gouverneur de l'isle Royale pour leur Gouverneur.
"Il Est même apropos De Comprendre Dans le Brevet de gouverneur de L'isle
Royale tous ces payis jusqu'au Cap Cod....
"Que La france ne doit point souffrir que les Anglois s'etablissent Dans
les payis qu'elle n'a pas Cedez.
"Qu'elle Doit incessament s'en remettre en possession, y Envoyer quantite
D'habitans, et s'y fortifier de maniere qu'on puisse Arrêter les Anglois
que depuis long tems tachent de s'emparer de l'amerique francoise dont ils
Conaissent L'importance, et dont ils feroient un meilleur usage que celuy
que les francois en font....
"Si les Anglois disent que les payis qui sont entre les rivieres de
quinibequi [_Kennebec_] et de Ste. Croix font partie de la Nouvelle
JE LEURS REPONS
"1. Qu'ils scavent bien le Contraire, que Ces payis ont toujours fait
partie de la Nouvelle france, que Les francois les ont toujours possedez et
habitez, que Mons'r De St. Castin gentilhomme francois a toujours eu, et a
encore son habitation entre la Riviere de Quinibequi et celle de Pentagoet
[_Penobscot_] (que même depuis les usurpations des anglois et leurs
etablissements, dans leur Prétenduë Nouvelle Angleterre) les francois ont
toujours prétendu que la Nouvelle france s'etend qusqu'au Cap Cod et qu'il
en est fait mention dans toutes les patentes de gouverneurs francois.
"2. Que De L'aveu même des Anglois, la Nouvelle Angleterre a une tres
petite Etenduë du Costé de L'est, il est facile de le prouver par eux
"J'ay Lu une description de la Nouvelle Angleterre et des autres Colonies
Angloises, Composée par un Anglois, traduite en francois, imprimée à Paris
en 1674 par Loüis Billaine, voicy les propres termes de Cet autheur
Anglois, La Nouvelle Angleterre est au Septentrion de Marylande, au raport
du Capitaine Smith, elle a prez de 25 Lieuës de Coste de mer.
"Ainsi selon les Anglois qui sont de Bonne foy, la Nouvelle Angleterre, qui
n'a que prez de 25 lieuës de Coste de mer, ne scauroit s'etendre jusqu'e á
La Riviere de Quinebequi. C'est tout au plus si elle s'etend jusqu'a deux
ou trois lieuës à l'est De Baston.
"Il Semble même que les Anglois ont basti Baston, et en ont fait une ville
Considerable à l'extremeté de leur pretenduë Nouvelle Angleterre.
"1. Pour être a portée et en Etat de s'emparer sur les francois de tout ce
qui est à L'est de Baston.
"2. Pour être en Etat d'Empecher les francois de s'etablir sur toute Cette
Coste jusqu à La Karoline inclusivement, laquelle Coste etant de Notorieté
publique de la Nouvelle france, à eté usurpez sur La france a qui elle
appartenoit alors, et luy appartient Encore, ne L'ayant jamais cedeé. C'est
ce que je vais prouver.
"Apres Avoir Invinciblement Convaincu les Anglois que tout ce qui est a
L'est de quinibequi a Toujours appartenu et appartient encore à La france,
excepté L'Acadie selon ses Ancienes limites, qu'elle a Cedée par force a
L'Angleterre par La paix d'utrecht.
"Il faut Que Presentement je prouve que toute La Coste depuis la Riviere
quinibequi jusqu' à La Caroline inclusivement appartient par toutes sortes
de droits à La france. Sur qui les Anglois L'ont usurpeé, voicy une partie
de mes preuves.
"Les françois ont decouvert tous ces payis Avant les Anglois, et en ont
pris possession avant Eux. Les Roys de france ont nommé ces payis Caroline
et Nouvelle france avant que les Anglois leurs eussent donné des Noms á
leur mode pour faire oublier les Noms que les francois Leurs avoient
imposez. Et que ces payis Appartenoient à La france.
"Les Roys de france ont Donné des lettres patentes à leurs sujets pour
posseder et habiter ces payis, avant que Jacques 1r et Charles 1r Roys
d'Angleterre en eussent donne à Leurs sujets.
"Pour Convaincre les Anglois de ces veritées il faut Lire avec attention ce
qu'en ont Ecrit Jean verazan, Champlain, Laet, Denis.
"Les traitez faits Entre La france et L'Angleterre, et Le memoire que j'ay
presenté L'anneé Dernier 1719.
"On y Trouvera tant de Choses, lesquelles il seroit trop long de Copier
icy, qui prouvent que ces payis ont toujours appartenu de droit a La
france, et que les Anglois s'en sont emparez par force, que La france ne
les a jamais Cedez à l'angleterre par aucun traité, que je scache.
"Et Partant que La france Conserve toujours son droit sur tous ces payis,
et qu'elle a droit de les redemander à l'Angleterre. Comme elle les
redemande présentement, ou Bien un Equivalent.
"L'Equivalent que la france demande et dont elle veut bien se Contenter,
C'est la restitution de tout ce qu'elle a Cedéé par force à L'Angleterre
par Le traité D'utrecht.
"Il Est De l'honeur et de l'interest de l'angleterre d'accorder à la france
"1. Parceque n'y ayant point D'honeur à profiter des Malheurs D'un Roy pour
Luy faire Ceder par force les payis qui luy appartiennent, il est de
l'honeur de L'Angleterre de rendre a la france, ce qu'elle a eté Contrainte
de luy ceder, et qu'elle ne possede qu'a ce mauvais tiltre.
"2. Il est aussi Contre la justice et l'honeur de l'angleterre de posseder
sans aucun Tiltre, et Contre toute justice les payis qui sont depuis la
Riviere de quinibequi jusqu'à la Caroline inclusivement.
"3. Il N'est pas moins de l'honeur et de l'interest de l'angleterre de
profiter du moyen que la france veut bien luy presenter, pour sassurer a
perpetuite toute Cette Coste, et pour la posseder justem't par la Cession
que la france en fera, et de tous ses droits sur ces payis moyennant
"4. Parceque L'Angleterre doit Craindre que la france, dont elle ne Doit
mepriser ni le Ressentiment ni la puissance, ne trouve une Conjoncture
favorable pour faire valoir ses pretensions et ses droits, et pour Rentrer
en possession de tout ce que L'Angleterre Luy a usurpée, et de tout ce
qu'elle l'a obligé par force de luy Ceder.
"5. Quand on veut trop avoir, souvent on n'a Rien, et même on perd ce que
L'on Avoit. Il est donc de la sagesse Et de l'interest de l'Angleterre de
ne pas pousser trop loin ses demandes, et de Convenir avec La france de
sorte qu'elle puisse posseder Avec justice et tranquillement des payis que
la france Aura toujours droit de reprendre jusqu'a ce qu'elle en ait fait
une Cession libre et volontaire, et qu'il paroisse que L'Angleterre En
faveur de Cette Cession luy ait donné un Equivalent.
"La france s'offre donc pour vivre en paix avec l'Angleterre de luy Ceder
tous ses droits sur toute la Coste qui est entre la riviere de quinibequi
dans la Nouvelle france jusqu'a la Riviere Jourdain, dans la Caroline, de
sorte que ces deux rivieres servent de limites aux francois et aux Anglois.
"La france Demande pour Equivalent de la Cession de tant de payis, si
grands, si beaux, et si a sa biensceance que l'Angleterre luy rende Et
restituë tout ce qu'elle luy á cedé par le traité Dutrecht.
"Si La france ne peut pas engager L'Angleterre à convenir de Cet
Equivalent, Elle pouroit (mais Ce ne doit être qu'a L'extremité) Ceder
Encore à l'Angleterre la Caroline francoise, C'est a dire, ce qui est au
sud de la Riviere Jourdain, Ou bien Ce qui est Entre la Riviere quinibequi,
et Celle de Pentagoet. Ou bien leur offrir une somme D'argent.
"Il Semble que L'Angleterre doive estimer Comme un grand Avantage pour
Elle, que La france veuille bien Convenir de Cet Equivalent, qui Assure Aux
Anglois et leur rend legitime La possession de Cette grande etenduë de
Costes qu'ils ont usurpez sur La france, qui ne les a jamais Cedez, qui ne
les Cedera jamais, et sur lesqu'elles elle Conservera toujours ses
legitimes droit et pretensions, jusqu'a ce qu'elle les ait Cédeés a
L'angleterre moyennant un Equivalent raisonnable tel qu'est la Restitution
de tout ce que La France luy a Cedé par force a Utrecht.
"Suposeé L'acceptation de Cet Equivalent par L'une et l'autre Nation.
"La france toujours genereuse Consentira pour vivre en paix avec les
Anglois, qu'une ligne tirée depuis l'embouchure de la Riviere de
quinibequi, ou bien, depuis l'embouchure de la Riviere de Pentagoet, qui
ira tout droit passer á egale distance entre Corlard [_Schenectady_]
et les lacs de Champlain et du Saint Sacrement, et joindre la ligne par
laqu'elle le sieur de L'isle geographe termine les terres Angloises,
jusqu'a la Riviere Jourdain, ou bien jusqu'a La Caroline inclusivem't. La
france dis-je Consentira que cette ligne serve De borne et limites aux
terres des deux Nations, de sorte que tous les payis et terres qui sont
entre Cette ligne et la mer appartiendront à L'Angleterre, et que tout ce
qui sera au dela de cette ligne appartiendra a La france.
"Dans Le fond il est avantageux a la france de faire incessament regler les
limites, tant pour Empecher les Anglois d'empieter toujours de plus en plus
sous pretexte de limites Non regleés, que parcequ'il est assuré que si le
droit de la france est bien soutenu le réglement lui sera Avantageux, aussi
bien que l'equivalent que j'ay proposé.
"Mais il pouroit arriver que les Anglois qui ont demandé le Reglement des
limites, voyant qu'il ne doit pas leur etre favorable s'il est fait selon
la justice, pourroient bien eux mêmes l'eloigner, afin de pouvoir toujours
empieter sur les francois sous pretexte de limites non regleés, et de se
mettre toujours en possession des payis Appartenans à la france.
"En ce Cas et aussi au Cas que les Anglois ne veullent pas restituer a la
france leur Nouvelle Angleterre et autres payis jusqu'a la Caroline
inclusivement qu'ils luy ont usurpez, ou bien leur rendre L'Acadie &c pour
l'equivalent Dont j'ay parlé.
"1. Il faut que la france mette incessament quantité d'habitans dans le
payis qui est entre la riviere de quinibequi et Celle de Ste. Croix, lequel
payis qui selon les Anglois N'est point en Litige, ni partie de la
pretenduë Nouvelle Ecosse, même, selon l'etendue imaginaire que luy á
donnée leur Roy Jacques 1er qui ne la fait Commancer qu'a La riviere Ste.
Croix, et Celle de quinibequi N'ayant jamais eté Cedé ni par le traite
D'utrecht ni par Aucun autre que je scache, et ce payis Ayant toujours
appartenu a La france, et eté par elle possedez et habité, Mr. de St.
Castin gentilhomme francois ayant son habitation entre la riviere de
Pentagoet et Celle de quinibequi comme je l'ay Deja dit.
"2. On peut même faire entendre a L'Angleterre que Le Roy donnera Ce payis
a la Compagnie des Indes qui scaura bien le deffendre et le faire valoir.
"Que Le Roy donnera aussi a la Compagnie des Indes la Caroline francoise,
Comme depandance et province de la loüisiane, a Condition qu'elle y mettera
des habitans, et y fera bâtir de bons forts, et une bonne Citadelle pour
soutenir et deffendre ce beau payis Contre les Anglois.
"Il Est Certain que si le Roy fait entendre serieusement qu'il est resolu
de donner à la Compagnie des Indes non seulement La Caroline francoise, et
le payis qui est entre les Rivieres de quinibequi et de Ste. Croix, mais
aussi de luy Ceder et abandonner tous ses droits sur tous les payis que les
Anglois ont usurpez sur la france.
"Il Est Certain Dis je, que les Anglois, Crainte D'Avoir affaire avec une
Compagnie si puissante, se resoudront au Reglement des limites, tel que je
l'ay proposé, et à rendre a la france toute la Nouvelle Ecosse ou Acadie
selon ses Ancienes limites, Enfin tout ce que la france leur à Cedez a
Utrecht, moyennant une somme D'Argent, ou bien L'equivalent que j'ay Aussi
"Je finis Ce memoire en priant de faire une tres serieuse attention aux
Exorbitantes prétensions des Anglois et a tout ce qu'ils ont fait Et font
encore pour se rendre maitres de la pesche la Moluë, et de L'Amerique
"En Effet il est tres important que quand on traitera du reglement des
limites, La france attaque les Anglois au lieu d'etre sur La defensive,
C'est a dire, qu'elle doit demander aux Anglois tout ce qu'ils ont usurpez
sur Elle, et le demander vigoureusement.
"C'est peut être le meilleur moyen de les mettre a la Raison, il est même
apropos qu'elle les presse de finir Cette affaire, Dont sans doute La
Conclusion luy sera Avantageuse, si on luy rend justice."
DEMANDES DE LA FRANCE (1723).
_Archives du Ministère des Affaires Etrangères.
"Pour tous les Raisons deduites cy devant La france demande a Langleterre.
"1. Qu'Elle laisse jouir Tranquillement la france de Tous les pays qui sont
a L'Est de la riviere Quinibequi ou de Celle de St. Georges excepté de la
seulle ville de Port Royal avec sa banlieüe et de L'accadie selon ses
anciennes Limites, C'Est a dire La partie Meridionale de la Peninsule
depuis le Cap fourchu jusqua Camseau Exclusivement, Que la france a cedée
par la traite d'Utrecht, Tout le reste qui est a L'Est de Quinibequi
[_Kennebec_], appartenant a La France en tout souveraineté depuis L'an
1524. Laquélle ne la jamais cedé ny par le Traitté d'Utrecht ny par aucun
"2. Que les Anglois Laissent Vivre Tranquillement sous la domination du Roy
les nations Sauvages qui sont dans Les payis a L'Est de Quinibequi et
qu'ils Ninquietent point les Missionnaires qui demeureront Chés les d.
Nations Ny les françois qui Iront Chés Elles.
"3. Que Les Anglois restituent a la france ce qu'ils ont occupé a L'Est de
Quinibequi et qu'ils ne Trouvent pas mauvais que les françois prennent
detruisent ou gardent les forts Postes et habitations, que les Anglois ont
Etablis, ou Etabliront dans tous les Pays a L'Est de Quinibiqui, ou de la