History, 1838–1856, volume B-1 [1 September 1834–2 November 1838]

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
Page 846
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<October 30  Hauns Mill Massacre> Prairie they seemed to form themselves into a three square position forming a vanguard  in front. At this moment David Evans seeing the Superiority of their numbers, (there being  240 of them, according to their own account) swung his hat, and cried for Peace— This not  being heeded they continued to advance, and their leader, Mr. , fired a gun, which  was followed by a solemn pause of 10 or 12 seconds, when, all at once, they discharged about  100 Rifles, aiming at a blacksmith shop into which our friends had fled for safety; and charging  up to the Shop, the cracks of which between the logs were sufficiently large to enable them to  aim directly at the bodies of those who had there fled for refuge from the fire of their murderers.  There were several families tented in rear of the Shop, whose lives were exposed, and  amidst a shower of bullets fled to the woods in different directions— After standing  and gazing on this bloody scene for a few minutes, and finding myself in the uttermost  danger, the bullets having reached the house where I was living, I committed my family  to the protection of heaven, and leaving the house on the opposite side, I took a path  which led up the hill, following in the trail of three of my brethren that had fled  from the Shop. While ascending the hill we were discovered by the Mob, who  immediately fired at us, and continued so to do till we reached the Summit. In  descending the hill I secreted myself in a thicket of bushes, where I lay till eight  o clock in the evening, at which time I heard a female voice calling my name in  an undertone, telling me that the Mob had gone and there was no danger.  I immediately left the thicket, and went to the house of Benjamin Lewis, where  I found my family, (who had fled there) in safety, and two of my friends mortally  wounded, one of whom died before morning. Here we passed the painful night  in deep and awful reflections on the scenes of the preceding evening. After day light  appeared, some four or five men, with myself, who had escaped with our lives from  the horrid massacre, repaired as soon as possible to the mills, to learn the condition  of our friends, whose fate we had but too truly anticipated. When we arrived at the  house of , we found Mr. Merrick’s body lying in rear of the house;— s  in front literally mangled from head to foot. We were informed by Miss Rebecca  Judd, who was an eye witness, that he was shot with his own gun, after he had given it up,  and then cut to pieces with a Corn Cutter, by a Mr. Rogers of , who keeps a  ferry on , and who has since repeatedly boasted of this act of savage barbarity.  ’s body we found in the house, and after viewing these corpses, we immediately  went to the Blacksmith’s shop, where we found nine of our friends, eight of whom were  already dead; the other, Mr. Cox, of Indiana, struggling in the agonies of death, who  expired. We immediately prepared and carried them to the place of interment.  This last office of kindness due to the relics of departed friends, was not attended  with the customary ceremonies, nor decency, for we were in jeopardy, every moment  expecting to be fired upon by the mob, who, we supposed, were lying in ambush,  waiting for the first opportunity to despatch the remaining few who were providentially  preserved from the Slaughter of the preceding day— However, we accomplished,  without molestation, this painful task. The place of burying was a vault in the Ground,  formerly intended for a well, into which we threw the bodies of our friends promiscuously.  Among those slain I will mention Sardius Smith, son of , about nine years old,  who, through fear, had crawled under the bellows in the shop where he remained till the  Massacre was over, when he was discovered by a Mr. Glaze of Carroll County, who presented  his rifle near the boys head and literally blowed off the upper part of it. Mr. Stanly  of Carroll told me afterwards that Glaze boasted of this fiendlike murder, and heroic  deed all over the Country. The number killed and mortally wounded in this wanton Slaughter [p. 846]
October 30 Hauns Mill Massacre Prairie they seemed to form themselves into a three square position forming a vanguard in front. At this moment David Evans seeing the Superiority of their numbers, (there being 240 of them, according to their own account) swung his hat, and cried for Peace— This not being heeded they continued to advance, and their leader, Mr. , fired a gun, which was followed by a solemn pause of 10 or 12 seconds, when, all at once, they discharged about 100 Rifles, aiming at a blacksmith shop into which our friends had fled for safety; and charging up to the Shop, the cracks of which between the logs were sufficiently large to enable them to aim directly at the bodies of those who had there fled for refuge from the fire of their murderers. There were several families tented in rear of the Shop, whose lives were exposed, and amidst a shower of bullets fled to the woods in different directions— After standing and gazing on this bloody scene for a few minutes, and finding myself in the uttermost danger, the bullets having reached the house where I was living, I committed my family to the protection of heaven, and leaving the house on the opposite side, I took a path which led up the hill, following in the trail of three of my brethren that had fled from the Shop. While ascending the hill we were discovered by the Mob, who immediately fired at us, and continued so to do till we reached the Summit. In descending the hill I secreted myself in a thicket of bushes, where I lay till eight o clock in the evening, at which time I heard a female voice calling my name in an undertone, telling me that the Mob had gone and there was no danger. I immediately left the thicket, and went to the house of Benjamin Lewis, where I found my family, (who had fled there) in safety, and two of my friends mortally wounded, one of whom died before morning. Here we passed the painful night in deep and awful reflections on the scenes of the preceding evening. After day light appeared, some four or five men, with myself, who had escaped with our lives from the horrid massacre, repaired as soon as possible to the mills, to learn the condition of our friends, whose fate we had but too truly anticipated. When we arrived at the house of , we found Mr. Merrick’s body lying in rear of the house;— s in front literally mangled from head to foot. We were informed by Miss Rebecca Judd, who was an eye witness, that he was shot with his own gun, after he had given it up, and then cut to pieces with a Corn Cutter, by a Mr. Rogers of , who keeps a ferry on , and who has since repeatedly boasted of this act of savage barbarity. ’s body we found in the house, and after viewing these corpses, we immediately went to the Blacksmith’s shop, where we found nine of our friends, eight of whom were already dead; the other, Mr. Cox, of Indiana, struggling in the agonies of death, who expired. We immediately prepared and carried them to the place of interment. This last office of kindness due to the relics of departed friends, was not attended with the customary ceremonies, nor decency, for we were in jeopardy, every moment expecting to be fired upon by the mob, who, we supposed, were lying in ambush, waiting for the first opportunity to despatch the remaining few who were providentially preserved from the Slaughter of the preceding day— However, we accomplished, without molestation, this painful task. The place of burying was a vault in the Ground, formerly intended for a well, into which we threw the bodies of our friends promiscuously. Among those slain I will mention Sardius Smith, son of , about nine years old, who, through fear, had crawled under the bellows in the shop where he remained till the Massacre was over, when he was discovered by a Mr. Glaze of Carroll County, who presented his rifle near the boys head and literally blowed off the upper part of it. Mr. Stanly of Carroll told me afterwards that Glaze boasted of this fiendlike murder, and heroic deed all over the Country. The number killed and mortally wounded in this wanton Slaughter [p. 846]
Page 846