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Murders in the Cumberland Gap

Sources & Images
Source Name Image(s)
CollectionState Historical Society of Wisconsin: Henry Miller Papers view image
Document Information
Date February 11, 1784
Author Name Alexander Martin (primary) Location: Danbury
Recipient Name Joseph Martin (primary)
Summary Governor Martin (of North Carolina) directs an investigation into murders committed in the Cumberland Gap. He states that if Cherokee or Chickamauga Indians are responsible a military expedition will be sent into their nation to obtain "satisfaction" unless they surrender the murderers. Directs that squatters be ordered off Indian Lands. Discusses an agreement between Spain and the Delaware Indians. Also mentions a treaty to be held with the Indians.
Document Format Autograph Letter Signed
Document Notes [not available]
Content Notes [not available]
Related Persons/Groups Joseph Martin; Alexander Martin; Alex Martin; Colonel Joseph Martin; Superintendent of Indian Affairs; Sullivan; Indians; Cherokees; Chickamaugas; person guilty; Bench; public; Spaniards; Delawares; General McDowell; Colonel Sevier; commanding officer; Sulivan County; Indians; people (of North Carolina); Campbell; Daniel;
Related Places Danbury; Danbury; Cumberland Gap; country; Morgan district; North Carolina; South Carolina; Georgia; Tennessee River; Indian Lands; French Broad River; Philadelphia;
Keywords letter; 25 January 1784; information; state; murders; nation of Indians; surrendered up to the justice of the state (North Carolina); expedition; trial; charges; superior court of Morgan district; hostile; peace; suspicion of ill will; innocent; acquittal; justification; satisfaction to the public; information; settlement; orders; Indian goods; Treaty;
Key Phrases order and drive off those evil minded persons who have intruded and still continue on the Indian Lands beyond French Broad River; I wish the Indians to have no complaints from our people

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From Alexr Martin
Feb 11th 1784
To: Col Jos: Martin
Indian Murders in Cumbd Gap
Bench demanded
Spanish-Delawares making a
settlement at Muscle Shoals
Gen McDowell - Col Seiver to
drive off intruders on Indian
lands over French Broad
Danbury February 11th 1784
I have received your Letter from Henry
County without a date, also your Letter from Sullivan
of the 25th January last. The information in the last is
of such importance to the State, that calls for my as well as
their immediate attention. The murders perpetrated in
Cumberland Gap must be inquired into — the nation
ascertained (of Indians) who have done the same: this
you will please to engage in as soon as possible, and
transmit an account of your discovery the earliest opportunity.
Should these murders be fixed upon the Cherokee.
Chickamonoga's, you will in my name demand the persons
guilty, to be Surrendered up to the Justice of the State; informing
them on their refusal an expedition will immediately
be levelled against them for satisfaction, which perhaps
will expel them their Country — In the mean while you
will demand Bench from the Chickamonoga's to stand
his trial for the charges you suggest against him in the
the Superior Court of Morgan District. — Should they
refuse, you will inform them that this State will
consider them still hostile, and that they have no
intentions of making peace To remove every suspicion
of ill will they may still retain. Bench must be
Surrendered — if he is innocent his acquital will
be his justification, and a Satisfaction to the public.

I shall write to the Governors of South
Carolina and Georgia also on this Subject: and
give them the information of the Spaniards and
Delawares making a Settlement at the Muscle Shoals
on Tenesee, as that part of the River is Supposed
to boundary this State, I think proper to give them the
information you have sent me.

You will call upon the General McDowel
and Colonel Sevier and the Commanding officer of
Sulivan County, to order & drive off those evil minded
persons who have intruded, and still continue on the
Indian Lands, beyond French Broad River — I have again
again repeated my orders to them. — I wish the Indians
to have no complaints from our People. — The
Indian Goods are not arrived from Philadelphia
— as soon as they will arrive I shall give you
notice, and ascertain the time of holding the Treatys
I am Sir
Your Most Obedient Humble Servant

Alex Martin
P. S. You will also make
demands of Campbell and
McDaniel, that they may
be tried in this state or be
sent to the place where the
felonies were committed.

Colonel Joseph Martin
Superintendant of Indian affairs