Morrison's Pensions


MOHAWK VALLEY RAIDS
    

The following is a list of raids, battles and skirmishes that took place in the Mohawk and Schoharie Valleys in 1781.
            I have been able to compile dates and information for most of the events. There were about twenty seven known small and large raids that took place, two major battles (New Dorlach, July 10, 1781 and Johnstown, October 25, 1781) and one of the most important skirmishes on October 30, 1781 at the West Canada Creek where the infamous Captain Walter Butler of the dreaded Butler's Rangers was killed.
            There are several other raids that took place but little is known about them. The following is an example of one. In a letter dated June 3, 1781 at Fort Schuyler it mentions that five Mohawks took two prisoners near Stone Arabia.
            In time I hope to add to the following list and or pinpoint exact dates.
            *************
February 6, 1781    Fort Davis in  the  German Flatts District is
                        attacked. Peter Davis and three of his
                        daughters were wounded.  One daughter was
                        stabbed three times and cut with a tomahawk.

March 2, 1781   A wood cutting  party  with  guards   (2 N.Y.
                        Continental Regt.)  were  sent  out from Fort
                        Schuyler  (present day  Rome,  NY)  in   the
                        morning.  Later  that  day Capt. Joseph Brant
                        captured most of this party  of Americans and
                        killed one.

April 24, 1781   Canajoharie District ‑ Cherry Valley (now  in
                        Otsego Co.) was attacked and  the  settlement
                        was burnt.  Eight inhabitants were killed and
                        fourteen were taken prisoners.

May 3, 1781     Palatine District ‑ Valentine Boyer was taken
                        prisoner.

May 10, 1781   Palatine District ‑ John J. Failing was taken
                        prisoner.

May 12, 1781   German Flatts District ‑ Thomas Shoemaker was
                        taken prisoner.

May 20, 1781   Canajoharie District ‑ Fort Clyde which stood
                        on the present day Route 163 was attacked  by
                        a small party of  the enemy.  One of the fort
                        Sentries John Balsle received thirteen wounds
                        during this attack.

 

 

May 25, 1781   German  Flatts  District ‑  Abraham  Wolleber
                        scalped twice and was  found three days later
                        by the  Fort  Herkimer  garrison.   Abraham
                        recovered  from  his wounds and died sometime
                        after the war.

May 26, 1781   Palatine  District  ‑  Walrath's  Ferry   was
                        attacked  by  a  small  party  of  the enemy.
                        Sergeant Henry A. Walrath  was wounded,  John
                        A. and Adolph Walrath were taken prisoners.

May 28, 1781   German  Flatts District  ‑  Nathaniel Shoemaker was wounded in the chest.

June 9, 1781    Canajoharie District ‑  David
                        Schuyler, Jr.,  Private in Capt. Jost
                        Dygert's Company in Col. Samuel Campbell's
                        Regt. [First Battalion of Tryon County Militia].
                       
June 24, 1781 German Flatts District ‑ Schell family
                        attacked while working in their fields near 
                       Fort Dayton (present day village of Herkimer)
.                      The father Christian and his son Demas 
                       were badly wounded and they later both died.
                       Frederick, another son, was wounded in the
                       thigh but escaped with his brother Marks.

July 4, 1781   Canajoharie District - George House and David
                      Schuyler, privates in Capt. Lawrance Gross' 
                      Company in Col. Marinus Willett's Regt. of 
                      New York State Levies where taken prisoners
                      while guarding cattle near Fort Windecker.
July 6, 1781    German Flatts District ‑ Capt. Peter Elsworth
                        and his detachment of men from Willett's
                        levies were ambushed near Steele's Creek.
                        Capt. Elsworth with three of his men were
                        killed, two taken prisoners and Henrich Grem
                        was wounded.

July 9, 1781     Mohawk District  ‑  Currytown (now in present
                        day Town of Root, Montgomery Co.)was attacked
                        and part of it was burned by the Indians
                        under Lieutenant John Dockstader.

July 10, 1781   Canajoharie District  ‑  Col. Marinus Willett
                        with a detachment of levies and Tryon County
                        Militia find Lieut. Dockstader and his party
                        encamped on a high ground in Cedar Swamp at
                        New  Dorlach (now  in  present day Sharon
                        Springs, Schoharie County). A battle was then
                        fought and leaving  several dead  behind  the
                        enemy eventually withdrew.

July 18, 1781  Canajoharie District ‑ a party of militia was
                        guarding Cattle on its way to Fort Rensselaer
                        were attacked. John Wolleber was captured.His
                        brother Nicholas and his brother‑in‑law Peter
                        Casler were killed. Another brother Peter was
                        wounded but escaped.

July 22, 1781    Palatine District ‑ Lieut. John Van Slyke was
                        killed.

July 29, 1781    Palatine District  ‑  A party of the enemy
                        under Lieut. Jacob J. Klock (a  son of  Col.
                        Jacob Klock) was attacked while encamped on
                        Lampman's Farm near Mother Creek. The
                        Americans under Lieut. Jacob Sammons soon
                        dispersed the enemy killing at least two of
                        them. This small skirmish is believed to
                        have taken place in what is now Oppenheim,
                        Fulton Co.. Some historians believe that it
                        took place in the now Town of  St. Johnsville
                        a few miles distant from the Oppenheim site.
                        The enemy had moved their camp once that we
                        know of plus the physical description of the
                        camp site can fit either location which adds
                        to the confusion.

August 1, 1781  Canajoharie District  ‑  Nicholas  House  was
                        taken prisoner.

August 5, 1781  Palatine District ‑ a  scouting  party  under
                        Lieut. John Zimmerman  marched  out  of  Fort
                       Zimmerman  (now  St.  Johnsville)   and  they
                       were attacked by a party of  Indians.  Lieut.
                       Zimmerman  was  killed,  Peter  Hellegas  and
                       Jacob  Zimmerman  who  had  been wounded were
                      taken prisoners.

August 26, 1781 Palatine District  ‑  John Pickerd  was taken
                        prisoner.

September 7, 1781 German  Flatts  District  ‑  Lieut.   Solomon
                        Woodworth with  a  scouting  party  of  about
                        forty  men  were  ambushed  in  present   day
                        Fairfield, Herkimer Co. Lieut. Woodworth with
                        about  eighteen  of his party were killed and
                    eight were taken prisoners.

October 4, 1781  German Flatts District  ‑  Warner  Dygert  of
                        Fall Hill  was  killed  and his son Suffrenes
                        was  taken  prisoner.  This was part of Major
                        John Ross' expedition into the Mohawk Valley.

October 7, 1781 Mohawk District ‑ a party of twelve Loyalists
                        under John Cook, Jr. fired at the sentries at
                        Fort Johnstown. The enemy's fire was returned
                        and  Cook fell wounded but the enemy escaped.
                        Cook later was captured because his wound was
                        too bad for him to travel and he had remained
                        in the Johnstown area.

October   1781  German Flatts District  ‑  Capt.  Jacob Small
                        was killed and Jacob Casler was taken
                        prisoner while picking apples. Again Indians
                        from Ross' party were out taking prisoners
                        for information before they struck the Mohawk
                        Valley with torch in hand.

October   1781    German Flatts District  ‑  Nicholas Bell was
                        killed and Peter Bellinger escaped. Also part
                        of Ross' information gathering Indian raids.

October 24, 1781  Mohawk District ‑ Currytown  is attacked  by
                        Major John Ross.

October 25, 1781 Mohawk  District  ‑  Warrensbush   settlement
                        burned (now  Town of Florida, Montgomery Co.)
                        by Major Ross.  Ross  proceeded  through  the
                        Town of Glen and  burned  various  homes  and
                        barns before crossing the Mohawk River to the
                        North side.

October 25, 1781 Mohawk District ‑ in the afternoon Major Ross
                        and his  men  rest in the fields near Johnson
                        Hall  in Johnstown.  Col. Willett  with about
                        four hundred American  troops  finds Ross and
                        attacks.  The battle  ended with darkness and
                        Major Ross withdrew from the field.

October 26, 1781  Mohawk District  ‑  a small  party of Indians
                        attack and burn  Currytown  again.  Christian
                        Bellinger  and  several  others  were   taken
                        prisoners.

October 30, 1781   German Flatts District ‑ two  skirmishes near
                        or at West Canada Creek. Lieut.  John Rykeman
                        of the Indian Dept. with  several others were
                        captured in  the first skirmish.  Jesse Woods
                        of Capt. Andrew Moody's Company of the Second
                        N.Y. Continental Artillery was killed. He was
                        the only American casualty during the pursuit of Major Ross.
                        The second skirmish took place at the fording
                        spot at the  West Canada Creek.  Capt. Walter
                        Butler  with  about  three  more of the enemy
                        were killed.  Major Ross  after several weeks
                        wilderness travelling reached Canada.

SCHOHARIE VALLEY RAIDS

July 26, 1781  Schoharie District  ‑  Albany  County. Lieut.
            Adam Chrysler attacked the Fox  Creek
            Settlement.  He tried to capture Major Jost
            Becker but failed in his attempt.

September 1, 1781  Schoharie District ‑ Cobleskill  was attacked
            and burnt.  Nicholas Warner and others were
            taken prisoners.

November 10, 1781 Schoharie District ‑ Lieut. Chrysler  attacks
            Vroomansland  and  kills  Peter  I.  Vrooman.
            Later that day a party of the 15th Regt. of
            Albany County  Militia  caught  up  with the
            enemy near Bouck's Island.   After a brief
            skirmish Richard Haggidorn was killed and the
            militia retreated.

November 11, 1781   Schoharie District  ‑  Capt.  Aaron  Hale  of
            Willett's levies and Capt. Jacob Hager of the
            militia caught  up with Lieut. Chrysler again
            near Lake Utsayantho and another skirmish
            takes place. John Sacket of the levies and
            Joachim  Van Valkenburg  of the militia were
            killed and  Joseph Hager  was wounded.  The
            Americans retreated and the enemy escaped.

 

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