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Poems Written About the Battle of Point Pleasant

From Documentary History of Dunmore's War, edited by Reuben Gold Thwaites and Louise Phelps Kellogg (Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society, 1905), p. 433-39

The following collection of popular verse was culled by Dr. Draper from the memory-stores of several pioneers whom he visited during the first half of the nineteenth century.

Brave Lewis our Colonel, an officer bold,
At the mouth of Kanhawa did the Shawnees behold.
On the tenth of October, at the rising sun
The armies did meet and the battle begun.

One thousand, one hundred we had on Ohio,
Two thirds of this number to the battle did go,
The Shawnees nine hundred, some say many more,
We formed our battle on the Ohio shore.

Like thunder from heaven our rifles did roar,
Till twelve of the clock, or perhaps something more,
And during this time the Shawnees did fly,
Whilst many a brave man on the ground there did lie.

From twelve until sunset some shots there did fly,
By this kind of fighting great numbers did die,
But night coming on, the poor Shawnees did yield,
Being no longer able to maintain the field.

Forty brave men on the ground there did lie,
Besides forty more of our wounded did die,
Killed and wounded on the Ohio shore,
Was one hundred and forty and perhaps something more.

What the Shawnees did lose we never did hear,
The bodies of twenty did only appear.
Into the Ohio the rest they did throw,
The just number of which we never did know.

Charles Lewis our Colonel was the first in the field,
He received a ball but his life did not yield,
In the pursuit of honor he did animate,
All those that fought near him or on him did wait.

George Fleming was a Colonel, courageous and bold,
He had been a hero, a hero of old;
He received three balls but did not expire,
He animated his men and to camp did retire.

Brave Fields was a Colonel, courageous and bold,
Who had been a hero—a hero of old;
He received a ball and but these words said,
"Fight on brother soldiers and don't be dismayed."

There was good Captain Buford and old Captain Ward,
They were both in the battle and fought very hard,
They fought like two heroes, and like heroes did die,
And in a short time on the ground there did lie.

Of commanders and subalterns great many did die,
And like our brave Captains, on the ground there did lie.
There was Goidman and Alien and a great many more,
Had the honor of dying on the Ohio shore.

There was Capt. John Murray, and McClanahan,
They were both in the field when the battle was begun,
They fought like two heroes, and like heroes did die,
And in a short time on the ground they did lie.

There's cowardly Haynes, I am sorry for him
His valiant Lieutenant commanded his men
While he poor soul in the brush work did lie
Like a rogue in a halter, condemned to die.

And old Andrew Lewis, in his tent he did set
With his cowards around him, alas he did sweat
His blankets spread over him, and hearing the guns roar,
Saying was I at home, I would come here no more.

There was Slaughter and Christie both valiant and kind,
Waiting for provisions, their command was behind,
The day of the battle they heard of the fight,
They made a long march and joined us that night.

The chief of the Shawnees and Mingoes so poor,
Declared with us they would never fight more,
Those words to confirm, did each hostages give
That they and their wives and children might live.

Ye daughters and sons of Virginia incline
Your ears to a story of woe;
I sing of a time when your fathers and mine
Fought for us on the Ohio.

In seventeen hundred and seventy four,
The month of October, we know,
An army of Indians, two thousand or more,
Encamped on the Ohio.

The Shawnees, Wyandottes and Delawares, too,
As well as the tribes of Mingoe,
Invaded our lands, and our citizens slew,
On the south of the Ohio.

Andrew Lewis the gallant, and Charley the brave,
With Matthews and Fleming also,
Collected an army, our country to save,
On the banks of the Ohio.

With Christian, and Shelby, and Elliot, and Paul,
And Stuart and Arbuckle and Crow
And soldiers one thousand and ninety in all
They marched to the Ohio.

These sons of the mountains renowned of old
All volunteered freely to go
And conquer their foeman like patriots bold,
Or fall by the Ohio.

They marched thro' the untrodden wilds of the west,
O'er mountains and rivers also,
And pitched, at Point Pleasant, their bodies to rest,
On the banks of the Ohio.

The Army of Indians, in Battle array,
Under Cornstalk and Elnipsicow,
Was met by the forces of Lewis that day,
On the Banks of the Ohio.

They brought on the battle at breaking of day,
Like heroes they slaughtered the foe,
Till two hundred Indians or more, as they say,
Were slain by the Ohio.

The Army of Indians were routed, and fled,
Our heroes pursued the foe,
While seventy soldiers and Charley lay dead,
On the banks of the Ohio.

The brave Colonel Fields and the gallant Buford
Captains Wilson and Murray also,
And Allen, Mc Clenahan, Goldsby and Ward,
Were slain by the Ohio.

Col. Fleming, and Matthews, and Shelby, and Moore,
And Elliot, and Dillon, also,
And soldiers one hundred and thirty and four
Were wounded by the Ohio.

Farewell, Colonel Lewis, till pity's sweet fountains
Are dried in the hearts of the fair and the Brave,
Virginia shall weep for her Chief of the mountains
And mourn for the heroes who sleep by his grave.

As Israel mourned for Moses of old,
In the valley of Moab by Nebow
We'll mourn for Charles Lewis the hero so bold,
Who fell by the Ohio.

As Israel did mourn and her daughters did weep,
For Saul and his host on Gilbow
We'll mourn Colonel Fields and the heroes who sleep
On the banks of the Ohio.

The tenth day of October, the morning being clear
We spied a savage army which was approaching near,
With full intent they marched along, the white men all to slay,
But indeed they were mistaken, for we did gain the day.

It was by God's kind providence, that or-der-ed it so,
That Robertson that morning, a hunting he did go,
Before that he had walk-ed far, a savage army spied
Which drove him to the camp again, "there's Indians boys he cried.

Come now brave boys" he boldly said, "to meet them let us go,
For fear these cruel savages, give us a fatal blow,
And we must ne'r give way to them, whilst we remain alive
Or else into the River, they surely will us drive."

Then marched out three hundred men, with courage stout and bold,
Commanded by Charles Lewis, who ne'r could be controll'd.
He was as bold a warrior, as ever fired a gun
We soon did meet the savages, and then began the fun.

The Indians they kept bawling, as loud as they could strain
Thinking upon that morning, the battle they would gain,
That they would kill and scain us all, and do the thing so neat,
And in the Camp that morning, their breakfast they would eat.

From morning until evening, the guns kept constant fire,
We gave the Indians something more than what they did desire,
We like unto bold heroes, victoriously did shine
We put the Indians to the route, and stopped their bad design.

The battle being over, the Indians they did say
All this is but a trifle, that we have seen today.
But this was their impertinence, their very best had done,
They saw their own destruction, the battle being won.

Our Royal Governor Dunnmore, he being of high renown
With fifteen hundred jovial men, he marched towards their town
With a full resolution, to slay both old and young
For all the barbarous actions, the savages had done

The Indians with aching hearts, on bended knees did fall
And for his Lordship's mercy, so loudly they did call
His Lordship with compassion, forgave them from that day,
If all the costs and charges amongst them they would pay.

Now bless our bold commander, Charles Lewis by name
He has been slain in battle, but we'l record his fame
He was as noble a warrior as ever fired a gun,
Success to Old Virginia, and thus concludes my song.

Mark well the 10 day of October which
causes woo the Indian savages the[y]
Cover the pleasant Banks of the Ohio

Judgment Calls to execution let
faim throughout all Nation goe ouer
heroes fout with Reslution on
the plasant bankes of the Ohio

Brave Charles Lewis and som nobal
Captains down to death the[y] did go alls[o]
there h[e]ads is bound with naptkins
benath the plasant Banks of the Ohio

much honar to this Valiant numbr
of Champains that did face there foose
Augusta weeping for those that slumbr
Beneath the plasant banks of the Ohio

Kings laments that dredfull falling
on the mountang of gillboah so Shall
we weep for brav Hugh allan
farre from the banks of the Ohio

Dunmore's War

West Virginia Archives and History