Please visit our new website at www.nedoba.org
WESTBROOK LETTER 1722
Letter of Capt. Thomas Westbrook, Falmouth, September 23, 1722
Letters of Col. Thomas Westbrook and others.
Jan. 1890. New England Historical Society
Falmouth, Sept. 23, 1722
May it Please your Excellency,
I take this Opportunity to Inform you that I Arrived at Piscataqua at 10 o'clock In y' Morning The 15th Instant & Immediatly Waited on y' Lt Governour (Dummer) of whom I reced a Confirmation That There was 5 or 6 hundered Indians at Arrowsick upon which I immediatly return'd to y' Sloops In Order to Sail but the Wind proving Contrary I was Oblidg'd To Stay till ye Nest Morning 3 of y' Clock And then proceeded to Arrowsick where I came to Anchor at One a Clock on Monday Morning. I Waited upon Coll. Walton who Told me y' Indians were Withdrawn & that he Intended to March that Day with 180 Men To Way lay the Indians In Their Carrying Places and Dersired our Company. Butt In as Much as the Indians were withdrawn I was willing To make my best way To St. Georges fearing ye Enemy might Attack it. Tuesday About five a Clock we Came To Sail & Came To the Mouth of St. Georges River on Wednesday 1 Morning And not having a fair Wind went up In five Whale boats To the fort which I found In good Order the Indians having Attacked it y' 21st of August and Kill'd 5 Men y' were out of the Garrison. They Continued Their Assalut 12 Days & Nights furiusly Only now and Then under a flagg of Truce They would have persuarded them to yeild of the Garrison Promising Them to give Them good Quarters and Send them To Boston. The Defend(t) Answd Were That they Wanted no quaters at their Hands. Daring them Continually To Come on and told them it was King Georges Land, And That they would not Yeild them up but with the Last Drops of Their Blood. The Indians Were Headed by y' fryar who Talked with Them under a flag of Truce and Likewise by Two french Men, as they Judg'd them to be. they Brought with them five Captives y' they took at St. Georges 15th June last and Kept them During the Seige. Butt upon their Breaking up Sept. Mr. John Dunsmore One of the Said Captives to y' fort to know Whether they would redeem them or not Our People Made Answrs they had no Order So to Do, neither Could they do it. Upon which Mr. Dunsmore return'd to the Indians and they Carry'd the Captives Back to Penobscott Bay, and Then frankly released Three of Them Vizt. Mr. John Dunsmore, Mr. Thomas Foster and Mr. William Ligett. One Jushua Rose yt was taken at Afroesaid Time and place And whom the Indians had left Behind at Penobscott Fort Made his Escape & After Six Days Travell Arrived at yt Fort yt Second Day After the Siege Began he being oblidged To make his Way Through the Body of y' Indians to Gett To The fort and was Taken In at One of the Ports. I now Detain the four Captives Aforesaid to be as Pilotts to Penobscott Fort Until I know your Excellency's Pleasure About them. They Inform me that the Indians have rebuilt Their fort at Penobscott Since the 15th of June Oblidging Them To Work on it. It Contains Abt 12 Rodd Square Enclos'd With Stockado's of 12 foot High. it has 2 Flankers on the East The Other on y' West, and 3 Gates not at that Time Hung. they Have Likewise 2 Swivell Gunns. It is Situated On an Island In a fresh Water River Twelve Miles from y' Salt Water. The Captives Judge there is no way of getting to the Island but by Canoes or flatt Bottom'd Boats & it is impossible to Carry up Whale boats by reason y' falls are 8 or 9 Miles Long & [ ] is Very Swift and full of Rocks. The Captives, Foster & [ ] Affirm That They Saw 12 or 13 Barrells of Gun Powder Brought To The fort By the Indians as they Said from Canada Abt the Middle of July. They have a Meeting House within' a Rod or Thereabouts on y' Outside of y' South Wall of the Fort it Being 60 Foot Long, 30 wide and 12 foot Studd With a Bell In it which They Ring Morning & Evening. The [ ] Rose Informs me They had a Considerable Quandty Of Corn standing when he made his Escape. Aftert I had viewed y' Garrison I return'd In abt an Hour & 1/2 To my Sloop' Lying bryd Mouth of the River and Sent up one of them With a few Hands upon Deck as to Carry up stores To The fort and Sail'd with the Other Sloop for Arrowsick full of Men To Indure the Indians Spys To Believe that We had Intirely Left the place and That there was no Design against Penobscott and Likewise To Inform Coll. Walton of y' State of Affairs not knowing but that he Might have Orders To Make an Attack upon Them. This Being all yt is Materiall I make Bold to Subscribe my self you Excellencys Most Obedient Humble Servant, Thom Westbrook
Coll. Walton Desired me to Come Along with him To This Place To See what forces that he Could Draw. which I Did Accordingly and Brought Mr. Dunsmore and Rose along with Me. The Garrison at St. George has Expended most of their Amunition During yt Late Seige and I Deisre you Excellency To Send pr yt first Opportunity 4 or 5 Barrells of Gun powder with Ball, Swan Shott and flints Answerable, for y' Indians are resolved To Take y' fort if Possible. If there be no Opportunity of Sending it to St. Georges please To Order it to Arrowsick and I will fetch it In my whale boats.
P.S. The Captives Inform'd me That yt Most Part of y' Indians food During y' Time of y' Seige was Seals which they Caught Dayly Keeping out a party of Men for that Purpose. They Also Inform us & do Assert That there Is great Quantitys of Sturgeon Bass and Eels To be Caught Even Close by y' Island where Penobscott Fort is
Capt Westbrooks Lettr
NEXT PAGE..........Westbrook Menu