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The Creek War of 1813 and 1814

Written by H. S. Halbert and T. H. Ball, edited by Frank L. Owsley

Publication Year: 1995

The first edition of Halbert and Ball's Creek War was published in 1895, and a new edition containing an introductory essay, supplementary notes, a bibliography, and an index by Frank L. Owsley Jr., was published in 1969. This standard account of one of the most controversial wars in which Americans have fought is again available, with introductory materials and a bibliography revised to reflect the advances in scholarship since the 1969 edition. This facsimile reproduction of the 1895 original provides a full and sympathetic account of the Indians' point of view, from the earliest visit of the great Shawnee chief Tecumseh to the southern tribes in 1811, through the buildup of apprehension and hostilities leading to the fateful battles at Burnt Corn, Fort Mims, and Holy Ground.

Published by: The University of Alabama Press


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pp. v

Editor's Acknowledgments

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pp. vii

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Editor's Introduction

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pp. ix-xvii

The Creek War of 1813 and 1814 is by far the most detailed and probably the most accurate of the older works dealing with the Creek War. In writing this account Henry Sale Halbert and Timothy Horton Ball relied heavily upon the manuscripts and reminiscences...

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Editor's Introduction to the 1995 Edition

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pp. ixx-xxii

The 1969 reprint of Halbert and Ball's The Creek War of 1813 and 1814, originally published in 1895, produced the only work devoted to the study of that conflict. The ensuing twenty-five years have seen a greatly increased interest in and study of Native Americans, not...

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pp. 9-10

When this work was commenced, several years ago, it was not expected that it would beoome in size what it has grown to be. It was then expected only to give facts in regard to the Creek war as conneoted with the white settlers in what is now South Alabama, giving especially a...

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pp. 13-18

THIS work proposes to give as accurate an account as can now be obtained from written and printed records, from traditions, and from personal observation, of that portion of American history known as the Creek War of 1813 and 1814:....

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I. The Choctaw-Muscogee Tribes

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pp. 19-24

THE Creek War of 1813 and 1814 is remarkable from the fact that all the branches of what ethnologists style the Choctaw-Muscogee stock of Indians were involved therein and took a part, on one side or the other, of that bloody conflict. As these tribes acted a prominent part in the early history of the Gulf States, a brief notice of their...

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II. Causes of the Creek War

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pp. 25-39

Every well informed American knows that Spain at first claimed and afterwards held Florida by "right of discovery," and its northern boundary was undefined; that Georgia, as the last of the thirteen colonies, was settled by the English in 1733; and that the French came down the Mississippi as early as 1682, and claimed from the Great Lakes to the Gulf. In 1763 France ceded to Great Britain nearly all her...

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III. Tecumseh Among the Chickasaws and Choctaws

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pp. 40-57

IN the summer of 1811, the celebrated Shawnee chief, Tecumseh, at the head of twenty armed and mounted warriors, visited the Southern Indians. His object was to induce these tribes to join the Indian Confederacy which he was forming to act in concert with the British troops in the war then impending with the United States. In company with Tecumseh was his kinsman, Seekaboo, who was to act the role of prophet and interpreter in the...

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IV. Tecumseh Among the Creeks

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pp. 58-84

It is singular that there is so much discrepancy among good and, in the main, reliable historians in regard to the time of this visit; but as one pushes researches onward with thoroughness in almost any line of investigation he finds that, in regard to man, it is more than easy to make mistakes. Some of these mistakes can be, some of them cannot be, corrected....

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V. The War Cloud Gathering

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pp. 85-104

WAR was declared between the United States and Great Britain June 18, 1812. Into this war Tecumseh entered heartily in favor of the British and against the Americans, as we have already seen. We are now to look at the Creek Indians in this year of 1812....

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VI. The Stockades

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pp. 105-119

THE writers who have treated of the "Creek War" briefly are many. Those who have gone much into the details are few. And these few seem to have had influences bearing upon them which led them to take different views of the same facts or sometimes to disagree in regard to the facts. Claiborne, to whose large work reference has already been made, doubtless meant to be, as he says in his Introduction...

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VII. Inter-Tribal Councils of the Creeks and the Choctaws

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pp. 120-124

THE Creek confederacy, in undertaking war against the Federal Government, was entering upon a conflict, that, for disparity of numbers and resources, never had a parallel in the annals of savage warfare. However little the ignorant and deluded warriors may have reflected over the magnitude of this undertaking, the wiser of their chiefs knew that the confederacy, even with British and Spanish aid,...

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VIII. The Battle of Burnt Corn

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pp. 125-142

From the letter of General James Wilkinson, much of which has been quoted in a preceding chapter, we learn that more than three hundred hostile Creeks, under the Prophet Francis, were camped, on the 25th of June, at the Holy Ground. General Wilkinson writes: "The last information received of their doings was on Wednesday [the 23d of...

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IX. Fort Mims

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pp. 143-176

INTRODUCTORY NOTE.-For the statements in this chapter different authorities have been consulted, as the writer has had access to the Ohicago City Library, the Illinois State Historical Library, the Newberry Library of Chicago, and the State Library of Indiana, all containing a large number of valuable historic reference books in regard to the American Indians; the last containing a large and choice collection of works pertaining to these Indians...

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X. The Kimbell-James Massacre

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pp. 177-182

RANSOM KIMBELL with his family came from South Oarolina to the Tombigbee River, settling near McGrew's Reserve about 1807, but in 1812 the family removed into the Bassett's Oreek Valley, near to the home of a settler whose name was Sinquefield. When the stockade was built bearing this pioneer's name, as a protection from the dreaded Muscogee incursions, the Kimbell family with the others in that neighborhood left their plantation...

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XI. Attack on Fort Sinquefield

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pp. 183-199

To the writer of this chapter it seems that full credence can well be given to a statement coming down from James Cornells in regard to a great council held by the hostile Creeks on the Alabama River (perhaps at the Holy Ground), some two weeks prior to the attack on Fort Mims. In...

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XII. The Night Courier

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pp. 200-205

THE inmates of Fort Sinquefield had retired to Fort Madison. Colonel Carson at Fort Glass, it may be again stated, was the military commander between the two rivers. More than a thousand persons were now at these two neighboring stockades, Glass and Madison....

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XIII. Incidents of the War in the Fork

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pp. 206-210

IT was not unusual for the inmates of the forts in the Fork to go out occasionally to visit theil' farms and bring back with them supplies for their immediate use. These visits were always attended with danger, for small Creek war parties were continually travelling over the country, committing all kinds of depredations. It was often noticed as a singular and unaccountable fact that when the...

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XIV. Choctaws and Chickasaws Join the American Army

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pp. 211-218

IN 1813, the nation of the Choctaws occupied that portion of the present State of Mississippi extending from the old counties of Wayne and Hancock on the south to Line Creek and Tallahatchie River, on the north and from the Tombigbee River on the east to the Mississippi River and Bayou Pierre on the...

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XV. The Bashi Skirmish

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pp. 219-222

IT is not certain when the events bearing this name took place. An intelligent citizen of Clarke county says, before Fort Easeley was evacuated. Pickett says early in October. The inmates of Fort Easeley and of Turner's Fort came for greater security to Fort St. Stephens, probably early in September, and from this neighborhood Colonel...

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XVI. Beard and Tandy Walker

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pp. 223-228

During September and October, 1813, many depredations were committed by small parties of Indians in the Fork, and occasionally some of the settlers were killed. About the last of October, one of Oarsou's men, named Beard, was killed near Fort Madison. The circumstances of his death, as detailed to the writer several years ago by the...

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XVII. The Canoe Fight

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pp. 229-240

THE North American Indian has, with good reason, when on what is called the war path, been dreaded by the white inhabitants of the frontiers; for he was cunning, quick, sagacious, often merciless. He knew how to come unexpectedly upon exposed households, to strike fierce and murderous blows, and to make good his retreat, taking with him scalps and even helpless women and...

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XVIII. Battle of the Holy Ground

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pp. 241-265

ON the 10th of November, General Flournoy wrote to General Claiborne, ordering him to proceed to Weatherford's Bluff and there establish a depot of provisions for General Jackson, who had written that he was more in dread of famine than of Indians, and that without a supply he could not carryon the campaign. In accordance with this order, on the 13th General Claiborne broke up his...

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XIX. The War in the Indian Country

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pp. 266-278

THE "Creek War," as waged by the whites against the Indians, has been very fully treated in those works that give an account of the life of General Andrew Jackson. Of these, twelve or more are in the Chicago City Library, written by Snelling, Eaton, Goodwin, Parton, Stoddard, Jenkins, Irelan, Waldo, Frost, and others, and some of them are very reliable in regard to the battles in the...

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XX. Closing Events, 1814

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pp. 279-286

AT Fort Jackson, the old Toulouse, the treaty of peace, by some called "Treaty of Conquest," was concluded August 9, 1814. By this treaty there was ceded to the United States Government, to defray the expenses of the war,--which, of course, the vanquished must pay--a large domain west of the Coosa; which was, says Brewer, "a very...

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pp. 287-294

IT was stated in the "Introduction" that the authors of this work proposed to do justice to the Indians and justice to the whites; which meant that they proposed and expected to state the facts, if they could reach them, concerning both the Indians and the whites, fairly, truly; without coloring; without unduly extenuating the blunders or the...

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pp. 295-334

The various passions and propensities of human nature give rise to singular events, some of them grotesque, some of them grand, some of them disastrous. About 1716 a scheme of wild speculation was started in France, which became known as the "Mississippi Bubble," aft"}r it burst in ruin, deep and pitiless, to multitudes. In the faU of 1813 took place, in Mississippi...

Editor's Notes

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pp. 335-344

Editor's Bibliography

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pp. 335-357

Editor's Index

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pp. 358-370

E-ISBN-13: 9780817383701
Print-ISBN-13: 9780817307752

Page Count: 392
Publication Year: 1995