Excerpt Concerning Raids in Southampton During King George’s French and Indian War

–From “History of Northampton, Massachusetts from its settlement in 1654 ” by James Russell Trumbull


[1746] “Scattering parties of Indians were constantly hovering round the settlements during the year 1746, stealing and destroying property, but no person was slain within the present limits of Northampton.  The houses of Aaron and Elisha Clark in Southampton, then the Second Precinct of Northampton, had been abandoned because of the threatened danger.  A small body of roving Indians plundered them August 25th, tearing the beds in pieces, seizing clothing and provisions, and committing other depredations.  Fearing pursuit, the savages fled to Pomeroy’s Mountain, and on the west side ot it wantonly slaughtered six cattle and one horse, and wounded others. ..   Intent on further mischief, the Indians, about two weeks afterwards, laid an ambuscade near the houses of Ezra Strong and John Wait, designing to get the scalp of the person who came to the pasture after the cows at night.  They drove the cows to the farther side of the lot, and while trying to keep them there, were discovered and fled….

[1747] “No Indians appeared in this vicinity till late in August, when Elisha Clark, living in the extreme northwestern part of the town of Southampton was killed by them.  While he was threshing grain in his barn, at an early hour in the morning of the 27th, sixteen Indians crept stealthily up, shot and scalped him, leaving his body, which had been penetrated by seven bullets, carefully covered with straw.  The enemy immediately fled, wantonly destroying as they went such cattle and other stock as came in their way.  They encamped the next night near the house formerly owned by Noah Strong in Westhampton, where they left standing sixteen poles, which were supposed to indicate the strength of the party…

[1748] “Little direct suffering from Indian incursions was inflicted upon the lower river towns this year.  Occasionally a small scouting party would penetrate the settlements and leave its mark.  Within the limits of the present town of Northampton no outrages were committed.  In the Precinct of Southampton one casualty occurred, with temporary bad results to the people of that section. 

Early in May, Noah Pixley, who lived in Southampton, was killed in the highway, while returning from the pasture to which he had just driven his cows.  The Indians fired four or five shots at Pixley, wounding him in the arm.  He ran some distance, but was overtaken, tomahawked and scalped, the savages cutting off part of his skull in their haste.  In their flight the Indians stopped at the house of Samuel Burt, which had been deserted, but only slight damage was done there. ..

The inhabitants of Newhampton, as it was frequently called in the military correspondence of that day, were panic-stricken by this disaster, and abandoned the settlement.  Most of them came from Northampton, and before the middle of May, the majority of them had returned to their old homes.  Rev. Jonathan Judd, the minister, moved all his ‘household stuff’ to Suffield, where he had relatives, on the 14th of May, and did not again occupy his house in Southampton till the 23rd of December.  Seven families returned in July, remaining there as a garrison during the summer.  Before snow began to fly, nearly all the settlers were back on their homesteads.”

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