“French Captive Examination from Piscataway 19th March 1690”

From the Massachusetts Archives. Transcribed in James P. Baxter, ed., The Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume V, p. 55-56.

Portsmouth 19th: March 1689/90 Upon Examination of the frenchman taken at Salmon

fflifls, he saith

Their Company that Attackqu’d Sallmon falls consisted. of sixty men 30 french & 30 Indians who came from Canady the begining of February from a Town called three rivers laying above Cabeek, that they have not been near any English Plantation since they came out till now but waited about twenty or thirty miles off severall dayes for a party of 20 or 30 Indians who promised to meet & Joyn with them but came not, that they have lived wholy upon hunting. yt they came by ordr of the french Govr at Canada & that both french & Indians are in pay at ten Livers p month. 

The said Gour is Count Fontenack yt arrived from ffrànce last yeare in A man of warr Wth severall merchant ships which went away again in 8ber only two ships remain in Canada of Twenty five Guns apeice.

That two parties of ifrench & Indians of three hundred men in a Company came about the same time they came, but wheither they were design’d he saith he knows not. That he knows nothing of the Mischiefe done near Albany, that they intended to carry their Captives to Canada & there sell them yt their design was not against this place when they came forth but principly against Monsuir Tyng & the place where he lived but he saith the Indians who were their principle pilots did often Vary in their Opinions about wt place to fall upon Wee can’t understand wheither it were m’ Tyng of Merrimack river or Casco Bay, That they saw no Considerable Company of Indians in their March only a few in some places hunting, that they brought out which them two pound of powder & sixty bullets a peice, that there are sun­dry English captives at Canada but he saw only three two giries & a boy, that the french are able to raise four or five thousand men in Canada able to bear armes, & yt they have Thirty two Companies of fifty men in A company in con­stant pay. that the ifrench Capts name of this Company is Monsiur Aretall: his son being his Lieut/

Letter from. Wm Vaughan Richard Martyn to the Govr and Council 

Portsmouth 19th March 1689/90

From the Massachusetts Archives. Transcribed in James P. Baxter, ed., The Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume V, p. 57-59.

To the Honorable the Governor and Council

Much Honored

Yesterday we gave account of ye dreadfull destruction of Salmon falls the perticulers whereof please take as fol­loweth;

The enemy made their onset between break of the day & sunrise — when most were a bed & no watch kept neither in fort nor house they presently took possession of ye fort to prevent any of ours doing it & so carried all before them by a surprize, none of our men being able to get together into a body to oppose them, so that in the place were kild & taken between fourscore & 100 persons, of which between twenty & Thirty able men, the fort & vpards of twenty houses l)urnt, most of the Cattle burnt in the houses or otherwise kil’d which were very considerable from thence the Enemy proceeded to Quamphegon where lived onely Thomas Homes who upon the Alarm retired from his house to a small Garrison built near his saw mill wheither also some of Salmon falls yt made their Escape fled, about 30 of the Enemies surrounded Holmes house, but met with noe opposition there till fourteen men of ours came up from lower parts of ye Town, & undiscryed by ye Enemy, made a shot upon that party of Indians at Holmes house, Sundry of them standing before the door, at which shot they say three of the Enemy fell, ye rest run into the house & broke through y° backside threof, & being more numerous than ours forced our men to retire, nine of them got safe home & flue Escaped to Holmes Garrison, only one of ours wounded in the En­counter, then the Enemy burnt Holmes house & proceeded about a a mile lower down & burnt the minist’s house with two more & Assaulted Spencers Garrison but were repel’d & so retir’d. James Plasted who was taken at Salmon falls was sent by Hope Hood Commander in chief of the Indians) With A flag of Truce to Tho: Holmes for ye surrendr of his Garrison promising liberty to depart upon his soe doing, but Plaisted returned not nor was ye Garrison surrendered.

The said Plaisted who was in ye Enemies hands many houres Informed yt be saw of ye Enemy one hundred & fifty men well accoutred & Guesses them to be about one half french; upon their taking possesion of ye fort he saith that ten of them french & Indians made A dance which Hope hood told him were all officers, he also told him yt his Brother Gooden who liv’d in Loves house was going to be try’d for his life by A Councill of WTarr, for yt in their takeing Loves house the said Gooden had kil’d one french man & mortally wounded another & further that there was Eight french ships design’d for Pascataqve River to destroy ye same.

The Alarm being given to all adjacent Towns in ordr to their releife we sent about thirty men from this Town, as many went from Dover, & a party from Yorke together with Wt could be got from their own town, but before they could unite their force it was neare night & then they marcht with about 100 men under Command of Capt Jo: Hamond Commander of ye uper part of Kittery, the scouts yt went before just as they came within sight of salmon falls discovered one of ye Enemy who was binding up his pack & staying behinde his Company fell into our hands which proved to be a french­man whose examination in short we herewth send you & to morrow morning intend to send the persons towards you by land, none by Water being just ready to goe: our forces proceeded in pursuit of ye Enemy & about 2 mile above ye fort of Salmon falls at the farther house up in the woods there discovered them about y° setting of ye sunn, our meu presently fell upon them & they as resolutely oppos’d them, in short the fight lasted as long as they could see friends from Enemies, in which we lost two men, one of York another of Cochecho kil’d upon ye place & 6 or 7 wounded some is feared mortally: what damage we did the Enemy we can’t at present say. This is all ye accot we can at present Give : to morrow intend you shall hear againe from us : we Intrern Subscribe ourselves

Honored Sirs yor humble servants

        W Vaughan       Richard Martyn


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