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French and Indian War

Instructions of Governor Robert Dinwiddie for Major Andrew Lewis, commander of expedition against the Shawnee, n.d.

extracted from

The Official Records of Robert Dinwiddie, Volume II, R. A. Brock, editor
(Richmond: Virginia Historical Society, 1884), page 320-322.


Governor Dinwiddieís Instructions to Major Lewis.

Instructís for Majír Andíw Lewis, Comídír in Chief of the Forces on an Expeditín agíst the Shawnesse:

Whereas, the Shawnesse have, contrary to their Faith, in a most violent and barbarous manner robbed and murdered many of our Bro. Subjects in our frontier Settlemíts, It is resolved to attack them in yír Towns to punish them for yír Insults and great Barbarities. And by Virtue of the Power invested in me as Lít-Govír and Comídír in Chief of Virgía, I do appoint You, Majír Andíw Lewis, to Comíd the Forces and conduct the necessary and just Expeditín. The Cherokee Indís being sensible of the Great Cruelties and Murders comitted by the Shwnesse agíst their Broís, the Eng., have generously sent in a No. of yír Warriors to join our Forces agíst those perfidious People, the Shawnesse, and they proposíd marchíg to attack them in yír Towns. I therefore in a particular Manner recomend these Indís to Yír Care, that You may shew them due Respect and yít they may be supplied with all necessaries the same as our own Forces. I have orderíd Cít. Hogg, with 40 of his Coíy, to march on Ďs Expeditín; a Draught of 60 Men to be made from Cít. Prestonís and Cít. Smithís Compaís, and yít Cít. Smith have the Comíd of them. Capt. Samíl Overton, with his Co., I suppose to be 40 Men; Cít Obadiah Woodson, with his Coíy, I hope will be forty Men more. One Cít. McMett, and some others proposíd some Men on a voluntary Subscriptín. From the forementioníd four Compaís, the Cherokee Indís and the Volunteers, making in all 350 Men, I think will be sufficient for the Expedition; but if You shíd think more Men necessary I leave it to You. You are imediately to order a proper Place to redezvous and to collect all Yír men together to proceed to the Shawnesse Towns withít Loss of Time, as the Season of the Year requires imediate Dispatch. I enclose You 8 blank Comíoís to be fillíd up as You may see necessary. I recommend Mr. Pearis for one, as he had the Trouble of bringíg the Indís to our Assistíce. The others You may fill up as occasion requires, first consultíg with Pearis those People yít may be proper to attend the Indís. You are to do every Thíg in Yír power to cultivate Morality among the Men, and yít they may have Dependence on God, the God of Armies and the Giver of Victory. You may appoint a Comissary to attend You to see Yír Provisís properly issued, and as Frugality is absolutely necessary, I think if he has [a] Lieutís Pay [it] will be sufficient; but yís I must refer to You. The No. of Horses You mentín for Yír Provisions and Baggage surprizíd me and the Council. We do not conceive You can want half yít No., as we think You cannot be six Weeks on the Expeditín, and You must consider the Impossibility of providíg Fodder and Corn for such a No., and surely every private Man can carry five Daysí Allowíce of Bread kind, wích, I think, must be of Wheat or Corn Flour; therefore, itís expected You will take no more Horses than are absolutely necessary. The manner of agreeing for them must also be left to You, and I recomend Frugality. If you are obligíd to press Horses, I herewith send You a press Warrít; if pressíd, You must comply with the Law in havíg them apraisíd. Co. Stewart, no doubt, must have a Quíty of Provisís by him, as he had 200 £ from me besides the Mo[ney] You gave him. I observe by a Lír from Cít Hogg he has a large Quíty of Beef and Corn, wích You must make use of, but in case more is wanted, I send You 200 £ to be applied as You may see proper. I sent up to Cít Smith 150 Small Arms, to bíls Gun Powder, and 140 Blankets, for the Indís, wích is all I possibly cíd provide here. As to the Security of the Forts, after You march on the Expeditín, as You are the Comídíg Officer of the Coíty, You must order some of the Militia to defend them till Yír retín, wín You may dispose of Yír Men as You may see proper. I have sent the Chief Warrior of the Indís a Comío., he has the Character of a brave Officer; shew him respect. If any Difficulties unforeseen shíd occur in Yír Expeditín, call the Officers of the Indís and Captís of the different Compaís to advise with You in such cases. As many Things may happen, yít I cannot give You particular Directís on, I must, therefore, refer the Conduct to Yír prudent Managemít, and recomend Frugality. I wish You Health and Success, with a safe return, and am, sincerely,

Sír, Yír most híble Servít.


French and Indian War Documents

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