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A History of the Schenectady Patent in the Dutch and English Times
10: Indian Wars on the Border, 1662-1713

Prof. Jonathan Pearson

Go back to: Burning of Schenectady | ahead to: Old French War

[This information is from pp. 271-289 of A History of the Schenectady Patent in the Dutch and English Times; being contributions toward a history of the lower Mohawk Valley by Jonathan Pearson, A. M. and others, edited by J. W. MacMurray, A. M., U. S. A. (Albany, NY: J. Munsell's Sons, Printers, 1883). It is in the Schenectady Collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at Schdy R 974.744 P36, and copies are also available for borrowing.]

[Copies of this book are available from the Schenectady County Historical Society.]

[The original version uses assorted typographical symbols to represent footnotes. To improve legibility, the online version uses the form (page number - note number.)]

The destruction of Schenectady and the uncertainty of future safety of the border settlers in the vicinity of that village, awakened in their mind serious doubts as to the expediency of rebuilding their dwellings and putting seed into the ground. To reassure the courage of the people, the convention at Albany passed the following resolution on the 22 Feb., 1690.

Resolved that for ye p'servation of there majes Intrest in these parts & ye Secureing of there Subjects in this time of war wth ye french, yt all means be used to Perswade all ye maquase to come & live & Plant at Schinnectady lately Destroyed by ye french and there Indians wh will be a means yt ye winter Corn sowed there may be reaped & ye Indians in Readinesse to joyn with our forces upon any occasion if ye enemy should come. — Doc. Hist., II, p. 90.

The Five Nations too in a council held at Albany, May 3, spoke encouraging words, —

"Brother Corlaer be no wise discouraged but make your fort strong (as we have our castles) at Schenectady and maintain a garrison there, that your Corne may be preserved & reap your harvest, also send for your wifes (271-1), and children from New York and encourage them that we shall be safe, and fear not, * * * The words of Diadorus are ended." (271-2)

In April an attack was made on the feeble settlement at Canastagione where eight or ten people were killed by the French Indians, "which has made the whole country in an Alarm and the People leave there plantations." (271-3)

Of this attack Leisler wrote to Governor Treat of Connecticut, April 19, as follows:

"It hapened yt last Sabeday, at Nistigione, 12 Myle from Albany, ye people there gathered all in one house & keept watch, the said ffrench and in Indians, finding in the night the houses empty, & perseving their retreat, went in a swamp, the people going in ye mourning, each to their houses, were surprized, 9 Cbristians, 2 negers were kild & captivated, which must needs encourage the enemie to further attempt if not prevented by a vigorous attake in Canada." (272-1) * * *

To the same effect, he wrote to the magistrates of Albany, April 30, in his Dutch English.

* * "most riars (272-2) desired som guns with iff your seemeth most be taken from sloop or petrares for Schonectede with Wee Desiers ma not be deserted doo It shuld kost 50 soldiers to maentain." * * * (272-3)

May 12, 1690, the magistrates of Albany to stay the general alarm and provide for the protection of the border,

"Ordered that the Posts of Schenechtade, Connestigioonè, and halfe-moone be forthwith supplyed with the proper number of men to defend the same, — and that none doe presume to post any other forces saving at the 3 places aforesaid at their uttmost perill." (272-4)

"Whereas it is judged necessary for to defend Schanechtede and to that purpose it is likewise found requisite that a Fort shall be built to defend ye Inhabitants and oppugn the Enemy if he should attack the same," — Capt. Sander Glen and others are ordered to build a "substantiall Fort on that lot of grounde called by ye name of Cleyn Isaacs." (272-5)

Robert Livingston — a strong and active Anti-Leislerian, in a letter of June 7 to Lt. Gov. Nicholson, makes serious charges against Leisler's agents at Albany of their "drinking and Quaffing while the French Indians comes and cutts off the People at Canastagionè and above Synechtady and never one of them cacht. We have all Leisler's seditious letters secured which was the occasion of the destruction of Synechtady, miraculously found in the streets all embrued with blood the morning after the massacre was committed." (272-6)

So impoverished had Albany and Schenectady become, that aid was called for from Connecticut for "fournishing the souldiers with provisions, Shennectady being destroyed and most of the out plantations deserted, that Yor honrs would be pleased to send a supply of an hundred barrels of porks or beefe equivalent for maintaining their Majes Forces." (272-7)

On the 9th June, 1690, four persons of those who bad been captured by the French and escaped from Canada, arrived in Albany, to wit, Klyn Isaack [Swits] of Schenectady, and his eldest son Symon, — Ryck Claessen [Van Vranken] of Niskayuna and one of Capt. Bull's soldiers taken at the destruction of Schenectady. (273-1) Four more captives taken at the same place were brought in March, 1691, by a "party of Christians and maquase." (273-2)

In the beginning of June, 1691, Gov. Sloughter, who succeeded Andros, visited Albany and Schenectady to inspect the defences and hold a council with the Five Nations.

In his speech June 1, to the Sachems assembled, he said:

* * "I must acquaint the Brethren that it was very unpleasant news to me, which was told me at Schenectady two dayes ago, by the poor distressed Inhabitants of that Village, how that some of the Brethren have burnt and destroyed several of their deserted houses and Barns, and have killed their horses, Cattle, Hoggs and Poultry in the woods, left by the Enemy, which is an uncharitable act, and ought to be enquired into and for the future prevented and remedied." (273-3)

"The maquasse propose for themselves and say: * * * * (4 June, 1691).

"We were glad to see your Excellcy safe arrived here to the Gentn of Albany and as soon as you have visited the Magistrates here, you took hoarse and rode to Schenectady where you see the ruines to that Towne occasioned by the French, and there the poor people made there complaints to your Excellcy of the killing of their Cattle and Hoggs; — we must confess the thing was done, but could not be avoided for we were ready to pursue the Enemy when they had done the mischeife at Schennectady & comeing home were almost starved and therefor for mere necessity we were compelled to do what we did; you expect satisfaction for the same, but pray consider how business is now circumstanced that it cannot conveniently be done, for if you should draw us from prosecuting the warr to go to hunt to make satisfaction for that injury, it would be of badd consequence.

"Brother Corlaer, we have often told you that you should fortifye yourselfe well, but you always tell us, the French were a Christian Enemy and they would warn you but you see how they have warned you by Schennectady, therefore pray you make the Citty as strong as the Forte and when our Indians doe goo out a fighting, then pray send seaven or eight Men in our Castle to make a noise (which is the manner of their Watching, a nights) that so our women and Children may be secure and not taken Captive whilst we are abroad."

"We deliver you a prisoner vist Joseph Marks (274-1) which we brought from Canada who was taken at Schenectady by the French and their Indians and shall endeavor to bring more by all occasions." (274-2) — (June 1, 1691.)

During the summer of 1691, Major Pieter Schuyler raised an expedition for Canada, in which he employed the Mohawks. Robert Livingston writing to Gov. Sloughter says, "I designe to send provisions to Schenectady for them to prvent their sotting & drinking here, that they may march from thence directly." (274-3)

About this time the Indians took prisoner one Cornelis Clatie at Canastaguijone. "In the end of June 2 men went over the river att Canastogione to make hay upon Claas [Janse Van Boekhoven's] de Brabander's land, — the most dangerous place in all the Province; some French Indians surprises them, kills the one and takes off his skull & what is become of the other we know not. The other people that were mowing of hay upon Claes de Brabander's Island that now belongs to John Child [Clute], heard 3 gunns goe off went to the river side, see noe body but the Cannoe; we sent a party of horse thither who found one of the men lying in the water at the shoare side." (274-4) Such was the alarm that the people durst not stay upon their farms, and there was danger the crops would not be harvested.

On the 11th July, Gov. Sloughter wrote to the Governors of the other Provinces, that he had just returned from Albany, where he "found our Plantations and Schenectady almost ruined. — I have garrisoned Schenectady and Halfe Moon with some of the 100 fusileers raised by our Assembly." (274-5)

Again Aug. 6, he says, "I found Albany full of disorder, the people ready to disert it; about 150 farms deserted & destroyed by the French."

October 5, 1691, "At a council held at Fort William Henry [N. Y].

"This Board having the Garrison of Schenectady under consideration, it is thought convenient to remove the 4 guns from there to Albany and that Peterardoes be placed in their steade." (274-6)

Late in the year 1691, another of the prisoners taken at Schenectady the year before was brought back by an Oneida Indian, who was rewarded in "Duffels and Rom" to the amount of £2, 2s.

In January, 1692, Cornelis Van Slyck, Harmen Van Slyck and Hendrick Janse went out from Schenectady with the Maquase upon the Brandwach towards Canada, Capt. Sander Glen furnishing "Sno Shoes" for them. (274-7)

In February came an alarm from Albany to Governor Fletcher that "350 French and 200 Indians had come within 36 miles of Schenectady."

The Governor proposed to "detach three hundred men out of the City regiment and adjacent counties to be transported to Esopus by water," from whence they were to be sent on to Albany and Schenectady by horses. (275-1)

In May there was a new alarm and Major Ingoldsby visited Albany where the officers "represented that they need a force of 400 men on this frontier, — 200 at Albany, 50 each at Schenectady, Canastagionè, & half moon, & 50 to go out with 100 Indians as constant scouts in the woods." (275-2)

Returning from Albany, the commander-in-chief, Maj. Ingoldsby, reported to the Council in New York, June 16, that he found the place in great disorder from the false alarm occasioned by some skulking Indians from Canada; that the fortifications were very much out of repair; — that he had confirmed the chain of friendship with the Five Nations and River Indians, and that he "had detached 30 men from the garrison at Albany to Schenectady; — 30 to Half-Moon and that 50 more were wanting at least for Cannestgioenna but could not afford to detach any more from Albany." (275-3)

In October, Governor Fletcher visited Schenectady and put it in some posture of defense for the ensuing winter. (275-4)

In September, three French prisoners being examined at New York said that last summer (1692) the French of Canada "had a design to fall upon Albany & Schenectady & the Mohac country, but first to take Shenectady where they resolved to build a fort * * but their design failed." (275-5)

The Provincial Council, July 1, for the purpose of obtaining information in relation to the late massacre at Deerfield, examined Jan Baptist Van Eps (of Schenectady), "aged about 19 years, who had been a prisoner or captive amongst the ffrench Indiana in Canada, the space of three years, and made his Escape from them in february last, when the ffrench and Indians attackt the Maquaes Castles, and came to Schenectade being the Uppermost ffrontier of this Province where His Excellency Benj. Fletcher, &c., then was with the fforces from New York to repulse the Enemy." (275-6)

In August, 1692, a new expedition was fitted out at Schenectady, consisting of 350 Indians of the Five Nations under Canachkorie to attack Canada. The expense of the outfit was £54, 3s. 5d. Among other things furnished was 4 ells of "red & blew" ribbons "to Tye in his Eares."

P. Davitse was allowed nine shillings for making two gun-stocks; Jellis Fonda nineteen shillings and six pence for making four gun stocks; — & Barent Mynderse and Christian Smith £7, 6s. 8d., for repairing arms for the Indians.

While at Schenectady the "Mayor & the Rest" stayed with Johannes Glen; — Hille Van Olinda their interpreter, made two great belts of wampum for which she received £2, 8s.

There was furnished for the expedition 600 lbs. of "Beefe & Pork besides the 4 quarters of a small beast," amounting to £1, 16s., — 25 skipples of Pease @ 2/6 and 24 Loaves of Bread @ 7d.

A large quantity of wampum belts was sent along to draw over the Praying Indians of Canada.

The zewant for two great belts cost £3, 12s.

The low condition of Schenectady is plainly shown by the following petition, — so impoverished had the poor people become that a paltry tax of only £29-7s ($73 33/100) was considered too great a burthen for the whole township to bear.

"To his Excell: &c. &c.

The Humble Petiçon of the Inhabitants of Skenectady in the county of Albany, —

Humbly Sheweth

That youre Excells Petiçonrs have received many great damidges and Losses by the ffrench & there adherents, By Murdering of there majties good Subjects and Burning there habitations and Cattle &c., and daly great Charges and truble with the Indian Souldgrs and there Wifes & Children as lately aboutt 300 of these were here 21 days before they Marched toward Canida, Destroying our grain &c. in our plantations, that our Winter Maintenance for our poore ffamilies is much Shortened to our Ruin haveing many poore Widows and Children from the out places here to Secure there Lyves: — as alsoe the magtrates &c. of Albany have Lotted to us to pay towards the Tax of 315lbs for our part £29-7p. which Seemes to our poor Condiçon very hard, not Knowing how to Raise it, being Constrained to plant together that we can not [lose] that Little What wee have Left, &c.

Whereupon your Petiçonrs humbly Implore Your Excellency for a Redress, & that wee may be freed of all Taxes till the Warr is ended and your Excellency's further assistance with Souldgrs &c. for a defence against Enemies &c. [no Signatures.]

Petition granted 'nemine contradicente' 11 Oct. 1692." (276-1)

In February 1693, the French attacked and took the first and second Mohawk castles. Major Ingoldsby writing on the 11th to Governor Fletcher from Albany, informed him that the French and Indians to the number of 550 had marched to the attack, "which we had by a youth [Jan Baptist Van Eps] taken at Schenectady three years agoe and made his escape from them just as they were to fall upon the castles an hour before day." (277-1)

On the 14th Governor Fletcher started from New York, arrived on the 17th by water and the same day set out for Schenectady, ordering the troops as they arrived from below to follow. On the 18th by the break of day the men who had gathered at Schenectady were ready to be set over the Mohawk but were hindered till the afternoon by a violent storm. The next day the rest of the forces attempted to cross but were hindered by floating ice; by 10 o'clock the ice packed and the men walked across, within two hours after the river was open again.

On the 20th the Governor sent another company of 42 men with 13 horses loaded with provisions and ammunition.

21st. Horses being carried over the river and men ready to be transported, an express came from Maj. Schuyler that he was near at hand on his return.

22d. The Governor and Major Schuyler returned to Albany with the forces. (277-2)

Major Peter Schuyler who commanded the force first sent out to meet the French, received the first news of their attack upon the Mohawk Castles on the 8th February, "soon after which" he writes "we had the news that a young man named Jan Baptist Van Eps (taken at Schenectady 3 years agoe) was runn over from the French, as they were to attack the first castle of the Mohogs and come to Schenectady, who related that the French were 350 Christians and 200 Indians." That night Lieut. John Schuyler and Cornet Abeel with 55 horse marched to Schenectady.

9th. The Mohawks at Schenectady being exasperated at the delay of the Christians to pursue the French, Major Schuyler was sent to Schenectady to pacify them.

10th. Major Schuyler sent Lieut. John Schuyler and Lieut. John Sanderse Glen with 6 men to reconnoitre the enemy: — they brought word that the French occupied both the first and second castles or forts.

11th. A party of 50 men was sent out to watch, a part of whom returned on Sunday the 12th, reporting that firing was beard, on the receipt of which tidings Major Ingoldsby despatched 200 men from Albany out of the several companies of militia, who arrived in Schenectady the same day.

13th. Major Schuyler receiving no orders to march from the commander-in-chief moved his men over the river (Mohawk).

In the afternoon orders were received to advance, and at the same time news came that the French had burned the three Mohawk Castles and were on their retreat. Major Schuyler marched 12 miles that evening with a force of 273 Christians.

At 10 o'clock he received word by a scout that 600 Indians were coming down to his assistance and despatched the same scout to Major Ingoldsby for more provisions and ammunition for them.

About 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning of the 14th they broke camp, receiving advice that the French were not above 8 miles from them. Lt. Harmen Van Slyck of Schenectady and two Indians being sent out to reconnoitre, brought word that the enemy had marched..

15th. Two hundred and ninety Indians, men and boys, some armed and some without arms joined the party.

16th. Major Schuyler sent word to Major Ingoldsby that the French bad built a fort and had resolved to fight. In the march this day "Arnout [Vielè] the interpreter's son came to them, who had been 3 years a prisoner among the French."

In the morning the two parties were within a mile of each other.

17th. "Decamped and marched toward the enemy. At 8 o'clock in the morning came in sight of the enemies fort. The enemy sallied out but were beat back; so a 2d & 3d time;" finally the French became quiet and the English fortified tbeir camp. A messenger was sent to Maj. Ingoldsby to hurry up provisions and ammunition, as many of the men had not had provisions for two days.

18th. Cold and stormy. The enemy retreated, but the men being out of provisions refused to follow.

19th. "News came that the provisions were near at hand with Capt. Simms and 80 men; 5 biscuits to a man were distributed & the march commenced. Coming within a mile of the enemy, the Indians refused to attack for fear the French would kill all their wives & children whom they had prisoners."

On reaching the river the enemy crossed on "a flake of ice" all being open above and below.

20th. Major Schuyler resolved to march over and pursue the enemy, but the men being wearied, "their shoes quite worn out & provisions scarce were not able to make any further pursuit." The most discouraging obstacle however, was the aversion of their Mohawk allies to attack the enemy for fear of the safety of their wives and children. Whereupon a retreat was ordered.

21st. Arrived at Schenectady where he found Governor Fletcher with 280 men from New York. In this expedition, the English lost four soldiers and four Indians, — wounded twelve, — killed of the enemy 33, including their captain commandant and 20 other officers and two of their commanding Indians, and rescued 40 or 50 prisoners. (279-1)

During the summer of 1693, active warfare ceased, but as winter approached, preparations were made to strengthen the fortifications and garrisons on the frontier.

Governor Fletcher writing to the Board of Trade Oct. 9, says, "the Province of New York is hardly circumstanced at present; we do not now muster 3000 militia, formerly 5000; more families are dayly removing for Pensilvania & Connectictt to be eased from the taxes and detachments. The Assembly have provided for 300 men to be at Albany this winter, — too small a number by half to justify the fronteers." (279-2)

On the 3d and 5th of October, Major Schuyler advised the Governor that the French were approaching Albany; that two men were taken prisoners, "near the Flats" above Albany and that a party of the enemy on the east side of the Hudson river fired upon a canoe coming down. (279-3)

During the winter of 1693/4 and summer following, there were no important movements on either side; the French using their best endeavor to make peace with the Five Nations by which they would be free to attack the English; the latter striving to counteract their projects.

About the 15th October, 1694, there was a disastrous "fire att Schenectady which burnt 1000 skippel of wheat." (279-4)

May 29 1695. "Some small skulking party of French & Indians have lately killed an old man near Albany & carried away one or two prisoners."

In 1695 Willem Appel, who had been severely wounded at the destruction of the village in 1690, presented the following petition to the Governor and Council;

"The humble petition of William Appell,

Humbly sheweth,

"That ye poor pettitioner was grieviously wounded when Schonechtade was cutt off, in so much that he could not gett up in his bed for 2 year together; but through the blessing of God can now just walk about though his wounds still open; and that yor Excellency's pettitioner hath a wife & 3 small children, and that your Pettitioner is incapacitated to maintain them onely by the selling of bier."

"Prays for the remission of the Excise of 14 pounds per year." (280-1)

During the summer of 1695, there were constant conflicts between the Five Nations and the French; and in July, Capt. Sander Glen of Schenectady conveyed a report from two Indians to Albany, that the French had landed in force at Cadarachqui [Kingston, C. W.]. Whereupon Dirk Wessels, Richard Ingoldsby, Charles Lodwick, Roger Wright, William Pinhorne and others were sent to Schenectady but could learn nothing further.

April 21 1696, Gov. Fletcher offered by proclamation 3 pounds bounty, and four pence per day above provisions for all soldiers, who will voluntarily enlist for one year, afterwards raised to £4, 6s. (280-2)

May 14, 1696, Col. Peter Schuyler writes, "Since my last I am obliged to give your Excellency an accompt of another man sculpt over against the Patroon's island." (280-3)

In July the French attacked and burnt the castle of the Oneidas; the Onondagas finding themselves too weak to cope with them, burnt their castles and retreated. There was great alarm at Schenectady lest the French should move down and attack the village. (280-4)

The declining condition of the border is well represented by the following petition:

"Att a meeting of ye Mayor, Alderman & Assistants of ye Citty and ye Justices of ye County of Albany, the 30th of Sept., 1696, who Representeth as follows:

"To his Excell. Benj. Fletcher, Capt. Genl & Governor in Cheeffe of his Majs Province of New York, &c.

The humble addresse of ye Mayor, Alderman & Assistants of ye Citty and Justices of ye County of Albany, who Representeth ye State and Condition of ye Citty and County aforesaid, humbly Sheweth:

Imprimis, That since ye beginning of ye present warr by ye dayly departing of ye inhabitants of ye Citty and County, we are weakened about 250 men, and that ye present garrison being 3 comps. Red Coats doe weaken dayly as well by desertion as oyrwise, so yt ye same with all ye Recruits from ye Governmt, where severall of our Inhabitants have Listed themselfs under can hardly make up two hundred men, which is not sufficient for ye Defence of this fronteer against ye Enemy.

2nd. That wee cannot Expect ye assistance from ye five nations as formerly since wee can Reckon that ye Proselites alone have lost about 60 men in severall Renconters, besides ye Mohoggs upper nations and River Indians, and since the Last Invasion by ye French and there Indians in Onondage & oneyde, wee fear yt ye five nations will not be so zealous for ye Crowne of England and this Governmt against ye french our enemy as formerly.

3dly. That our Plantations round about ye towne can not be farther improved without ye great danger of there Lives, as it doth appear by ye barbarous murder and skalping of severall People this summer in there Labour.

4thly. That by ye Examination of a french Prisoner from Canada this Summer, who Reports yt there was Prepared 500 pare of Snow Shoes for a Design this winter.

That by reason of ye above articles many families as well from Shinnechtady as Albany are departed and severall more are Preparing to Depart, which can not be oyrwise but a fatal consequence.

Wee do therefore begg your Excell: would be pleased to take this adresse in his Serious Consideration and humbly Pray yt wee may have ye favour of your Excell Presence here this winter with sufficient strength as your Excell shall think fitt, which will without Doubt be an occasion for many Inhabitants to Continue and will Extreamly oblidge your Excell most humble and obedt Petrs to Pray forever. (Signed by the city & county ofcers). — Albany City Rec., Albany Annals, III, 16.

On the 10th Jan., 1696, about 12 o'clock at night, the whole guard of the garrison at Schenectady consisting of 16 men, deserted. Lieut. Bickford the commandant pursued them, — a fight ensued in which several of the deserters were killed and wounded. The remainder were brought back, tried by court martial and condemned to be shot. (281-1)

17 Sept., 1696. "About ten days ago a skulking party of French Indians killed a man & wounded another near Schenectady." (281-2)

In the autumn of this year several small parties of French and Indians appeared on the frontiers and great apprehension of a more formidable attack during the winter was felt, so that "many of the Inhabitants thought of removing to New York." To allay their fears the Governor went up to Albany with a detachment of his own company. (282-1)

This anticipated raid during the winter of 1696-7, happily did not take place, but in the spring of 1697 small parties appeared on the Mohawk doing much mischief as opportunity favored. The following letter describes one of these raids:

"Col Schuyler.

"Just now came hither two Indians & a Indian woman from the Maquas Country giving an acct that to day about noon an onondage Indian was Killd coming from Albany by 8 French Indians though they found but 3 clubbs. They fired first upon another party but misst them, Escap'd then came this poor Dog, was knockt on the head and scalpt, a little Afterwards the French Indians saw a Young Indian man & endeavour'd to take him prisoner, but he Defended himself so long that another party of Onondages came to his reliefe upon sight of which the French Indians fled & run through the River. This happen'd Just on this side the Willigen [just below Post Jackson] [Port Jackson?] where peter van olinda formerly lived.

I break off and rest.

"Your humble servant
Johannes Glenn


"6 May 1697."

"A letter from Capt Johannes Glen from Schenectade to Coll. Peter Schuyler at Albany translated from the Dutch by M. Clarkson." (282-2)

So bold did the enemy become that "some [French] regulars and Indians captured at the gate of Schenectady a very influential Onondago Chief."

"They were not able to make any prisoners, as recommended, having been pursued immediately after striking the blow by a number of the enemy half again as strong as they." (282-3)

Earl of Bellomont succeeded Fletcher as Governor in April, 1698; in July he made a journey in great state to Albany and Schenectady, staying two weeks at the former and two days at the latter place, "My Lady" accompanied him.

Among the items of expense were the following:

"To John Anderson who goes to Shennectady for beer 3 shillings; —

"To Robert ye Coachman for ye horses at Shinnectady ann grease for ye Calesh, £0-8-3.

"To My Lord's Butler John to give ye Servants at Shinnectady qwhen My Lord was there 6 Lyon Dollars, £1-13s.

"To Capt. Sanders [Glen] at Shinnectady for provisions, £8-9-3s.

"To Willem Gysbertse [Van Brakel] for a man & horse Expresse to fetch Capt. Nanfan's men from Shinnectady 12 shillings,

"To Jacob Teunise for his horse to Shinnectady with my Lord 6 shillings,

"To Capt. Sander [Glen] his company of Train-bands at Shinnectady each man one shilling, — [63 men] — £3-3s.

"To Harme Janse Knickerbacker for his Waggen & horses to Shinnectady £1-17s."

At Albany the Governor and suite embarked on board a vessel with their calesh and 6 horses for their return to New York and a pinnace and crew were sent along to bring off provisions from the shore during the voyage. The whole expense of the journey was 245 pounds, of his Excellency's table 34 pounds.

While at Schenectady Governor Bellomont gave orders for repairing the "ffloor, Roofe, hearth & beds of the middle Barracks." (283-1) During the year 1697-8 Lt. Daniel Hunt commanded the garrison at Schenectady which consisted of a detachment of Capt. Nanfan's company, formerly Capt. Hyde's. (283-2)

On the 20 Sept., 1697, articles of peace were signed between France and Great Britain called the peace of Ryswick. For nearly ten years the Mohawk valley had been the scouting ground of the two hostile parties. The husbandman had labored with his musket by his side and made his dwelling literally his castle.

The news of peace did not reach Canada until May, 1698, and then by the way of New York in a communication from Governor Bellomont. (283-3)

Although peace had been declared between the two nations, the French of Canada still threatened war against the Five Nations, and Gov. Bellomont prepared to espouse the cause of his Indian allies by calling upon the train-bands of Albany and Schenectady to hold themselves in readiness to march with the regulars. The dangers and alarms of these times are clearly stated by Gov. Bellomont in a letter to the Lords of trade dated 24th Oct., 1698;

"If by providence" says he, "the last winter had not been the severest that ever was known in the memory of man the French had certainly destroyed both Albany and Schenectady. I am well informed they were prepared at Mont Reall for it, having in readynesse 1500 pair of raquetts or Snow Shoes, 140 small boats & 250 Canoes; but the snow being deeper than the height of a man, they durst not venture to put their designe in execution. Albany & Schenectady are equally defenceless, being only fortified with a single row of Stockades; — no ditch or wall, so that an enemy that would be hardy enough may come and with their muskets single out what men they please in either place. For I observed the stockades had in many places wide spaces between them and they are even with the ground. * * * In my next letter * * I shall propose a fund for building the Forts at Albany and Schenectady, which are so necessary for the defence of this and the neighboring Provinces. * * * If such were built & well garrisoned the French could never make any impression on this Province. * * * They are both of them very well seated for frontier places; Albany for covering all the Province from attack, on Canada side & Schenectady for doing that in part, and for covering the Mohacks, it being very commodiously seated on the Mohacks river and much more pleasantly than Albany." (284-1)

After the proclamation of peace, early in 1698, the fortifications and garrisons on the border were greatly neglected. May 25, 1700, Gov. Bellomont wrote to the Lords of trade "that at the very time they [the French] are fortifying against us and keeping up the same number of soldiers still, which they did all the war; we on our part let our wooden forts fall to the ground & reduce our pittance of soldiers and neither mind paying nor recruiting them. (284-2)

1700. On the 29 August, Gov. Bellomont held a conference with the sachems of the Five Nations at Albany, to whom he made the following complaint:

"I have some complaints at this time made to mee of mischief lately done by some of your people in killing their cattle above Schanegtade; I desire you will inquire into the matter and take such order that reparation maybe done the people that have been so wronged." * * * (284-3)

From 1697 to 1701 there was peace between England and France, consequently between Canada and the English Provinces. Nevertheless the constant intrigues and threats of the French towards the Five Nations made it necessary for the Provincial authorities of New York to use persistent and vigilant circumspection to counteract these intrigues.

Governor Bellomont died 5th March, 1701. Already rumors were rife in New York of a prospective war between France and England, on which account Col. William Smith, President of the Council and ex-officio Governor of the Province, in writing to the Lords of Trade, "begs leave humbly to repeate the state and condition of the forts at Albany and Schenectady which are almost totally decayed & unserviceable." (285-1)

In 1709, orders were sent from England to Governor Lovelace to prepare for an attack upon Canada and Nova Scotia. It was proposed to send out a naval squadron and 5 regiments of regular troops to Boston, there to be joined by 1200 men of New England.

These troops were to attack Quebec, whilst 1500 men marching by way Albany were to attack Montreal. (285-2)

The Five Nations and River Indians were to assist. This expedition was to be commanded by Col. Francis Nicholson and Col. Samuel Vetch, but like the attempt in 1691 proved a miserable failure. The English ministry instead of sending the promised armament to their American Provinces, sent it to Portugal.

The Five Nations during the war 1701-13, between France and England, being neutral became corrupted, and less firmly attached to the latter.

In 1711 another attempt was made to conquer Canada; as abortive as the others, the naval expedition proving a failure. As a consequence the French Indians commenced their skulking attacks upon the frontiers, killing two families in Schaghtakook. (285-3)

Jan. 1, 1712, Governor Hunter wrote to the Lords of Trade "all is quiet at present upon the Frontier." (285-4)

From this time until the "Old French war" in 1744, there was peace between France and England and consequently between Canada and the colonies.

In 1715 the township of Schenectady had two military companies of foot consisting of about 60 men each, including officers. The following lists show the names of the officers and men enrolled in these two companies at that date:

1st. Foot Company of Scheny.

"D Leyst van Capt. Johs Sanderse Glen Zyn Compenye. (286-1)

Capt. J. Sanderse Glen, Luyt Gerret Symer feedr [Veeder], Luyt Jan Wemp, Luyt Arent Brat, Luyt Barent Wemp, Corpr Evert V. Eps, Corpr theunis V. d Volge, Corpr Manus Vedder, Abm Glen, pieter Vrooman Jur, ghysbert V. Brakel, Helmus Veeder, Johs teller Jur, Jacob Swits, Sander Glen, Cornelis Van Dyck, Claes franse [V. D. Bogart], Jacob Schermerhorn, Jan Schermerhorn, Symon tol, Jan Dellemont, Andries V. Pette, Jan Marselus, Jacob V. Olinda, Johs Vedder, Cornelis V. Slyck, Cornelis Viele, David Marenus, Joh Peck, Jellis fonda (30)

Jacobus Peck Jr, Abrm D. Graef, Pieter Danyelse [V. Antwerpen], phlip phlipse, symon folkertse feeder [Veeder], Jacob Vrooman, pieter quinez (?), Jelles Van Vorst, Abrm Groot, Cornelis Slingerlant, theunis Swart, Dirck Groot, Sweer Marselus, Jan Baptist V. Eps, Arent Danyelse [V. Antwerpen], Barent Vrooman, Hendrick Vrooman Jr, Myndert Wimp, Jacob teller, Willem Marenus, Claas V. Putte jr, Jacob flipse [Philipse], Welm hael [Hall], Robt Ets [Yates], Nicolas Stensel (?), Arent Samuel brat, Symon Groot, Marte V. Slyck, Hendrick flipse [Philipse], Wilm Daes (30)

In all 60 men


2d Foot Company Of Schen.

"D Leyst Van Capt Harme Van Slyck Compenye Ano. 1715. (287-1)

Capt Harme V. Slyck, Luyt Hendrick Vrooman, Luyt Jacob Glen, Sergant Johs teller, Sergant Gerret V. Brakel, Sergant folcket Symonse [Veeder], Corpl Jacob V. Ghyselinge, Corpl Andries D. Graaf, Corpl Harme Vedder, Jan Barentse Wemp, Jan Vrooman Jur, Cornelus Van der Volge, Benyemen V. Vleck, Marte V. Benthuysen, Samuel Hagadorn, Willem teller, Wouter Vrooman, Jan Danyelse [V. Antwerpen], Esyas Swart, Joseph Clement, Arent Schermerhorn, Jacob Meebie, Myndert Van ghyselinge, Johs Marenus, ficktoor pootman, Daniel tol, Bertolomew picker Jr, Johs Van Eps (29)

Symon Swits, Arenout d Graef, Wilm Brouwer, Pieter mebie, Tyerck franse [V. D. Bogart], Philip Groot, ysack d Graaf, Philip Bosie, Johannes Vrooman, Abraham Meebie, Harme Vedder Jur, Jonetan Stevens, Arent Van Putte, Jacobus Vedder, Wouter Swart, Jeremy tickstoon, Sander flipse [Philipse], Wilm Coppernol, Hendrick hagedorn, Pieter Vrooman, Harme flipse [Philipse], Robt Dyyer (?), Nicklas Stevens, Pieter Brouwer, pieter Clement, Adam Smith, John feerly (27)

In all 56 men


Although the peace of Utrecht brought comparative quiet to the border settlements of this Province, the Five Nations still distrusted the French and their Indians and stood prepared to defend themselves against their attacks.

The English sympathized with them and furnished them every aid and help short of an armed force. They built their forts, supplied them with arms and ammunition, — repaired their muskets and tomahawks, clothed them with duffels and strouds and in times of scarcity sent them corn. In many cases the smiths and carpenters sent there, were citizens of Schenectady.

In 1711, Governor Hunter, the better to protect his faithful allies, — the Iroquois, — contracted with Gerrit Symonse [Veeder], Barent Vrooman, Hendrick Vrooman, — John Wemp and Arent Van Petten, carpenters of Schenectady, for 1000 pounds, to build two forts in the Indian country, — one for the Mohawks 150 feet square and 12 feet high of logs one foot square, with a blockhouse at each angle two stories high and 24 feet square (288-1); also a chapel within the fort 24 feet square; the other for the Onondagas of like dimensions.

In 1724, Harmen Vedder was appointed captain of a party of smiths stationed among the Senecas, at a salary of 50 pounds; and Andries Brat at 15 pounds, Hendrick Wemp at 25 pounds and Harmen Van Slyck at 25 pounds, as smiths among the Onondagas. (288-2)

In 1726, Joseph Van Sice of Schenectady, presented a bill to the Governor for seven months service as smith in the Seneca's country for which he claimed 20 pounds.

At a conference between Governor Burnet and the six Sachims at Albany.

9 Sept., 1726.

A Seneca Sachim said:

* * * "It is three years ago that you Offer'd us a Smith, and told us we might look for one to our minds, we found one then who pleased us very well. It was Myndert Wemp; when his time was expired he told the Sachims that he was going home whereon they desired him to come again because he was good and charitable to the poor, therefore we desire he may be our Smith and go with us when we go home. We desire also an Armourer who can mend our Locks and Arms, such a Man lives at Schenectady." (288-3)

"5 Oct., 1728.

"Brother Corlaer.

"It has been Customary when we came here towards the fall that a Smith and an Armourer to be sent to work for you, but then to work in our Country we beg you to grant us now that Joseph Van Sise and Hendrick Wemp may be Ordered to go up with us who are fit persons for our Occasion.

"His Excellency answered I will order a Smith and an Armourer to be sent to work for you but then I Expect that you will not suffer the ffrench Smith who is now there nor any other from Canada to reside among you for the Future. (289-1)

"A Sinneke Sachim said

"Brother Corlaer.

"We desired a Smith & an Armourer but we do not hear further of it. You spoke about a ffrench Smith who is with us now, he can Make no work for he is an old man And can scarce see So we beg again that Joseph Van Size and Hendrick Wemp may go up with us. We would fain have the Smith and Armourer go with us Now that we may be sure of them otherwise it may be neglected.

"His Excellency answered


"I will give Effectual orders to the Commissioners to send a Smith and an Armourer with you to work in your Country. (289-2)

"Oct. 4, 1728.


(271-1) Mr. Van Cortland writing to Gov. Andros May 19, says, "most of the Albany women are att New Yorke."

(271-2) Col. Doc., III, 714.

(271-3) Col. Doc., III, 716.

(272-1) Doc. Hist., II, 131.

(272-2) [Ryer Schermerhorn — M'M].

(272-3) Doc. Hist., II, 131.

(272-4) Col. MSS., XXXVI.

(272-5) Isaac Swits lot at foot of State street.

(272-6) Col. Doc., III, 727.

(272-7) Col. Doc., III, 693.

(273-1) Doct. Hist., II, 153; Col. Doc., III, 781-2.

(273-2) Col. MSS., XXVII.

(273-3) Col. Doc., III, 773.

(274-1) A soldier of Lt. Enos Talmage's detachment posted in the fort at Schenectady.

(274-2) Col. Doc., III, 778, 779.

(274-3) Col. Doc., III, 781, 782, 805.

(274-4) Col. Doc., III, 783-4.

(274-5) Col. Doc., III, 784, 792, 795.

(274-6) Council Minn., VI, 57; Col. MSS., XXXVIII.

(274-7) Col. MSS., XXXVIII.

(275-1) Council Min., VI, 165.

(275-2) Col. MSS., XXXVIII.

(275-3) Coun. Min., VI, 104.

(275-4) Coun. Min., VI, 134; Leg. Min., VI, 50.

(275-5) Col. Doc., III, 855.

(275-6) Col. MSS., XXXIX.

(276-1) Coll. MSS., XXXVIII.

(277-1) Col. Doc., IV, 2, 6.

(277-2) Col. Doc., IV, 14.

(279-1) Col. Doc., IV, 16.

(279-2) Col. Doc., IV, 55.

(279-3) Col. Doc., IV, 65.

(279-4) Col. Doc., IV, 118.

(280-1) Col. MSS., XL.

(280-2) Col. MSS., XL.

(280-3) Col. Doc.

(280-4) Col. Doc., IV, 173.

(281-1) Col. Doc., 160-1.

(281-2) Col. Doc., IV, 198.

(282-1) Col. Doc., IV, 234, 243, 245.

(282-2) Mass. Sect. State's office vol. XXX, 416.

(282-3) Col. Doc., IX, 666.

(283-1) Col. MSS., XLII.

(283-2) Col. MSS., XLII.

(283-3) Col. Doc., IV, 344-5.

(284-1) Col. Doc., IV, 409.

(284-2) Col. Doc., IV, 644.

(284-3) Col. Doc., IV, 735.

(285-1) Col. Doc., IV, 867.

(285-2) Col. Doc., V, 73.

(285-3) Col. Doc., V, 281.

(285-4) Col. Doc., V, 303.

(286-1) Col. MSS., LX.

(287-1) Col. MSS., LX.

(288-1) Col. Doc., V, 279.

(288-2) Col. MSS., LXVI.

(288-3) Col. Doc., V, 797.

(289-1) Col. Doc., V, 867.

(289-2) Col. Doc., V, 868.

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