Ne-Do-Ba   (Friends)
Exploring & Sharing the Wabanaki History of Interior New England
A Maine Nonprofit Corporation - 501(c)3 Public Charity

 Home > Events > 1688-1700 > 1690 Expedition > The Son's Version              Skip Content x

The Eastern Expedition of 1690
Thomas Church's Version

Created December 1997

Source: The History of Philip's War
by Thomas Church, Esq.

The Second Expedition East, 1690

Being ready, they took the first opportunity, and made the best of their way to Pejepscot fortnote - This English fort was located on the north side of the falls at Brunswick and made of stone. It is sometimes confused with the Indian wood stockade located on Laurel Hill in Auburn. The fort was abandoned in the spring of 1690 and the English expected the Abenaki to occupy it in their absence., where they found nothing. From thence they marched to Amerascogen, and when they came near the fort, Major Church made a halt, ordering the Captains to draw out of their several companies sixty of their meanest men, to be a guard to the Doctor, and knapsacks, being not a mile from said fort. And then moving towards the fort, they saw young Doneynote - Young Doney, aka Robin Doney is thought to be a half breed who lived among the Indians. He was a signer of the 1693 articles of peace at Pemmaquid. He may be a descendant of a Frenchman named D'Alney who trading along the Maine coast in the early 1600s. and his wife, with two English captives. The said Doney made his escape to the fort, his wife was shot down, and so the two poor captives were released out of their bondage.

The said Major Church and Captain Walton made no stop, making the best of their way to the fort, with some of the army, in hopes of getting to the fort before young Doney; but the river through which they must pass, being as deep as their arm pits. However Major Church as soon as he was got over, stripped to his shirt and jacket, leaving his breeches behind, ran directly to the fort, having an eye to see if young Doney (who ran on the other side of the river,) should get there before him. The wind now blowing very hard in their faces, as they ran, was some help to them; for several of our men fired guns, which they in the fort did not hear, so that we had taken all in the fort, had it not been for young Doney, who got to the fort just before we did. Who ran into the south gate, and out at the north, all the men following him, except one. Who all ran directly down to the great river and falls.

The said Church and his forces being come pretty near, he ordered the said Walton to run directly with some forces into the fort, and himself with the rest, ran down to the river, after the enemy, who ran some of them into the river, and the rest under the great falls. Those who ran into the river were killed; for he saw but one man get over, and he only crept up the bank, and there lay in open sight. And those that ran under the falls, they made no discovery of, notwithstanding several of his men went in under the said falls, and were gone some considerable time, could not find them. So leaving a watch there, returned up to the fort, where he found but one man taken, and several women and children; amongst whom were Captain Hakins' wife and Worumbos' wife, the sachem of that fort, with their children. The said Harkins was sachem of Pennacook, who destroyed Major Walden and his family, some time before, &c.

The said two women, viz. Harkins'note - Kancamagus aka John Hawkins, was a Pennecook sachem (leader) from the Merrimack River, grandson of Passaconaway. He moved his family to the Androscoggin about 1685, to be better protected from Mohawk raiding parties. and Worumbos'note - Worumbo was a sachem (leader) on the lower Androscoggin River. Drake says he was at the attack on Storer's garrison at Wells, with Madokawando in 1689. wives requested the said Church, that he would spare them and their children's lives; promising upon that condition, he should have all the captives that were taken, and in the Indians' hands. He asked them how many? They said, about four score. So, upon that condition, he promised them their lives, &c. In the said fort there were several English captives, who were in a miserable condition. Amongst them was Captian Hucking's wife, of Oyster river.

Major Church procedded to examine the man, taken, who gave him account, that most of the fighting men were gone to Winterharbornote - Biddeford , to provide provisions for the bay of Fundy Indiansnote - Mi'kmaq, who were to come and join with them to fight the English. The soldiers being very rude, would hardly spare the Indian's life, while in examination; intending when he had done, that he should be executed. But Captain Hucking's wife, and another woman, down on their knees, and begged for him, saying, that he had been a means to save their lives, and a great many more; and he had helped several to opportunities to run away, and make their escape; and that never, since he came amongst them, had fought against the English, but being related to Hakins' wife, kept at the fort with them, having been there two years; but his living was to the westward of Boston. So, upon their request, his life was spared, &c.

Next day the said Church ordered that all their corn should be destroyed, being a great quantity; saving a little for the two old squaws, which he designed to leave at the fort, to give an account who he was, and from whence he came. The rest being knocked on the head, except the aforementioned for an example; ordering them all to be buried. Having inquired where all their best beaver was? they said it was carried away to make a present to the bay of Fundy Indians, who were coming to their assistance.

Now being ready to draw off from thence, he called the two old squaws to him, and gave each of them a kettle, and some biscuit, bidding them to tell the Indians, when they came home, that he was known by the name of Captain Church, and lived in the westerly part of Plymouth government; and that those Indians that came with him were formerly King Philip's men, and that he had met with them in Philip's war, and drawn them off from him, to fight for the English, against the said Philip, and his associates, who then promised him to fight for the English, as long as they had one enemy left. And said, that they did not question, but before Indian corn was ripe to have Philip's head; notwithstanding [Philip] had twice as many men as were in their country; and that they had killed and taken one thousand three hundred and odd of Philip's men, women and children, and Philip himself, with several other sachems, &c.; and that they should tell Hakins and Worumbos, that if they had a mind to see their wives and children, they should come to Wells garrison, and that there they might hear of them, &c.

Major Church having done, moved with all his forces down to Mequaitnote - Maquoit, where the transports were, (but in the way some of his soldiers threatened the Indian man prisoner very much, so that in a thick swamp, he gave them the slip and got away) and when they all got on board the transports, the wind being fair, made the best of their way for Winterharbour; and the next morning before day, and as soon as the day appeared, they discovered some smokes, rising towards Skaman's garrisonnote - located on the east side of the Saco River about 2 miles below the falls.. He immediately sent away a scout of sixty men, and followed presently with the whole body. The scout coming near a river discovered the enemy to be on the other side of the river. But three of the enemy were come over the river, to the same side of the river, which the scout was of, ran hastily down to their canoe. One of which lay at each end of the canoe, and the third stood up to paddle over. The scout fired at them, and he that paddled, fell down upon the canoe, and broke it to pieces, so that all three perished.

The firing put the enemy to the run, who left their canoes and provisions to ours. And old Doneynote - Old Doney, apparently the father of Young Doney and husband of an Abenaki woman. Some historians say he was English, most say he was French. He may be the son of a Frenchman named D'Alney who trading along the Maine coast in the early 1600s., and one Thomas Baker, an Englishman, who was a prisoner amongst them, were up at the falls, and heard the guns fire, expected the other Indians were come to their assistance, so came down the river in a canoe. But when they perceived that there were English as well as Indians, old Doney ran the canoe ashore, and ran over Baker's head, and followed the rest; and then Baker came to ours, and gave an account of the beaver, hid at Pejepscot plain. And coming to the place where the plunder was, the Major sent a scout to Pejepscot fort, to see if they could make any discovery of the enemy's tracks, or could discover any coming up the river. Who returned, and said they saw nothing but our old tracks at the said fort, &c.

Now having got some plunder, one of the Captains said it was time to go home, and several others were of the same mind. The Major being much disturbed at this motion of theirs, expecting the enemy would come in a very short time, where they might have a great advantage of them, &c.

Notwithstanding all he could say, or do, he was obliged to call a council, according to his instructions, wherein he was outvoted. The said commander seeing he was put by of his intentions, proffered, if sixty men would stay with him, he would not embark as yet; but all he could say or do, could not prevail. Then they moved to the vessels, and embarked, and as they were going in the vessels, on the back side of Mayr pointnote - (Mare's Point) in the east part of Casco Bay and also called Merryconeag, they discovered eight or nine canoes, who turned short about, and went up the river; being the same Indians that the Major expected, and would have waited for. The aforesaid Captain being much disturbed at what the Major had said to him, drew off from the fleet, and in the night ran aground.

In the morning Anthony Bracketnote - Anthony Brackett, Jr., was the son of Anthony Brackett. The father was killed and the son was taken captive in 1689 at Falmouth., having been advised and directed by the Indian that had made his escape from our forces, came down near where the aforesaid vessel lay aground, and got aboard. [He] has proved a good pilot and Captain for his country. The next day being very calm and misty, so that they were all day getting down from Maquait to Perpodacknote - Cape Elizabeth, and the masters of the vessels thinking it not safe putting out in the night, so late in the year, anchored there. At Perpodack the vessels being much crowded, the Major ordered that three companies should go on shore, and no more. Himself with Captain Converse went with them to order their lodging. And finding just houses convenient for them, viz., two barns and one house; so seeing them all settled, and their watches out, the Major and Captain Converse returned to go on board. And coming near where the boat was, it was pretty dark, they discovered some men, but did not know what or who they were. The Major ordered those that were with him, all to clap down and cock their guns, and he called out, and asked them who they were! And they said, "Indians." He asked them whose men they were? They said, "Captain Southworth's." He asked them where they intended to lodge? They said, "In those little huts that the enemy had made when they took that garrison."

The Major told them they must not make any fires, for if they did, the enemy would be upon them before day. They laughed, and said, "Our Major is afraid." Having given them their directions, he with Captain Converse, went on board the Mary sloop, designing to write home, and send in the morning the two sloops which had the small pox on board, &c.

But before day our Indians began to make fires, and to sing and dance. So the Major called to Captain Southworth to go ashore and look after his men, for the enemy would be upon them by and by. He ordered the boat to be hauled up, to carry him ashore, and called Captain Converse to go with him; and just as the day began to appear, as the Major was getting into the boat to go ashore, the enemy fired upon our men, (the Indians) notwithstanding that one Philip, an Indian of ours, who was out upon the watch, heard a man cough, and the sticks crack, who gave the rest an account, that he saw Indians, which they would not believe; but said to him, "You are afraid." His answer was, that they might see them come creeping. They laughed and said, they were hogs. "Ah," said he, "and they will bite you by and by." So presently they did fire upon our men. But the morning being misty, their guns did not go off quick, so that our men had all time to fall down before their guns went off, and saved themselves from that volley, except one man, who was killed.

This sudden firing upon our Indian soldiers, surprised them, that they left their arms but soon recovered them again, and got down the bank, which was but low. The Major with all the forces on board landed as fast as they could, the enemy firing smartly at them; how all got safe ashore. The enemy had a great advantage of our forces, who were between the sun's rising and the enemy, so that if a man put up his head or hand they could see it, and would fire at it. However, some, with the Major, got up the bank, behind stumps and rocks, to have the advantage of firing at the enemy. But when the sun was risen, the Major slipped down the bank again, where all the forces were ordered to observe his motion, viz., that he would give three shouts, and then all of them should run with him up the bank.

So, when he had given the third shout, ran up the bank, and Captain Converse with him, but when the said Converse perceived that the forces did not follow, as commanded, called to the Major, and told him the forces did not follow. Who notwithstanding the enemy fired smartly at him, got safe down the bank again; and rallying the forces up the bank, soon put the enemy to flight. And following them so close, that they took thirteen canoes, and one lusty man, who had Joseph Ramsdel's scalp by his side. Who was taken by two of our Indians, and having his deserts, was himself scalped.

This being a short and smart fight, some of our men were killed and several wounded. Sometime after, an Englishman, who was prisoner amongst them, gave an account, that our forces had killed and wounded several of the enemy, for they killed several prisoners according to custom, &c.

After this action was over, our forces embarked for Piscataquanote - Portsmouth, NH. The Major went to Wells, and removed the Captain there, and put in Captain Andros, who had been with him; and knew the discourse left with the two old squaws at Amerascogrennote - this is intended to be the mid-section of the Androscoggin River, where the English knew the Abenaki had at least two large villages., for Hakins and Worumbos to come there in fourteen days, if they had a mind to hear of their wives and children; who did then, or soon after come with a flag of truce to said Wells garrison, and had leave to come in and more appearing came in, to the number of eight, (without any terms) being all chief Sachems. And were very glad to hear of the women and children, viz., Hakins and Worumbos' wives and children. Who all said three several times that they would never fight against the English any more, for the French made fools of them, &c. They saying as they did, the said Andros let them go.

Major Church being come to Piscataqua, and two of his transports having the small pox on board, and several of his men having got great colds by their hard service, pretended they were going to have the small pox; thinking by that means to be sent home speedily. The Major being willing to try them, went to the gentlemen there, and desired them to provide a house; for some of his men expected they should have the small pox; which readily did, and told him, that the people belonging to it were just recovered of the small pox, and had been all at meeting, &c.

The Major returning to his officers, ordered them to draw out all their men that were going to have the small pox, for he had provided an hospital for them. So they drew out seventeen men, that had as they said all the symptoms of the small pox. He ordered them all to follow him, and coming to the house, he asked them how they liked it! They said, "Very well." Then he told them that the people in the said house, had all had the small pox, and were recovered; and that if they went in, they must not come out till they all had it. Whereupon they all presently began to grow better, and to make excuses, except one man who desired to stay out till night before he went in, &c.

The Major going to the gentlemen, told them, that one thing more would work a perfect cure upon his men, which was to let them go home; which did work a cure upon all, except one, and he had not the small pox. So he ordered the plunder to be divided forthwith, and sent away all the Plymouth forces. But the gentlemen there desired him to stay, and they would be assisting to him in raising new forces, to the number of what was sent away; and that they would send to Boston for provisions, which they did and sent Captain Plaisted to the Governour and council at Boston, &c.

And in the mean time, the Major with those gentlemen went into all those parts, and raised a sufficient number of men, both officers and soldiers. Who all met at the bank on the same day that Captain Plaisted returned from Boston. Whose return from the Boston gentlemen was, that the Canada expedition had drained them so that they could do no more. So that Major Church, notwithstanding he had been at considerable expenses in raising said forces to serve his King and country, was obliged to give them a treat and dismiss them. Taking his leave of them, came home to Boston in the Mary sloop, Mr. Alden master, and Captain Converse with him on a Saturday. And waiting upon the Govermour, and some of the gentlemen in Boston, they looked very strange upon them, which not only troubled them, but put them in some consternation; what the matter should be, that after so much toil and hard service, could not have so much as one pleasant word, nor any money in their pockets; for Major Church had but eight pence left, and Captain Converse none, as he said afterwards.