The Civil War

An excerpt from…

The American Indian In The Civil War 1862-1865

Annie Heloise Able

Lincoln & London, University of Nebraska Press 1992

Pages 206-207a

Some Wyandot Indians, who before the war had sought and found homes among the Senecas,(562) were robbed of everything they possessed by secessionist Indians,(563) who would not, however permit them to go in search of relief northward.(564) When all efforts to induce them to throw in their lot with the Confederacy proved unavailing, the strict watch over them was somewhat relaxed and they eventually managed to make their escape. They too, fled into Kansas. And so did about one hundred Delawares, who had been making their homes in the Cherokee country. In the spring of 1862, they had begun to return destitute to the old reservation(565) but seem not to have been counted refugees until much later in the year.(566) The Delaware Reservation on the north bank of the Kansas River and very near to Missouri was peculiarly exposed to ravages, horses and cattle frequently being stolen. For that reason and because so much urged thereto by Agent Johnson, who was himself anxious for service, the Delawares were unusually eager to enlist.

(562) Indian Office General Files, Neosho, I 81 of 1860

(563) Lawrence and others, Wyandots, to Dole, December 23, 1862, ibid., Land Files, Shawnee, 1860-1865, L 12 of 1862. This letter was answered January 20, 1863, and, on the same day, Coffin was instructed to relieve their distress.

(564) “Being personally acquainted with the condition of the Wyandots… would here state, that a portion of them are living among the Senecas bordering on the Cherokee Country, and they are in a suffering condition. The rebel portion of the Senecas and Cherokees have robbed them of all their ponies, and in fact all the property they had, and will not allow them to leave and come to Wyandott, which is almost 2 hundred miles in distance, and their friends in Wyandott are unable to relieve them (on account of the rebel forces) without protection of our armies. The Wyandotts that are here are anxious to go and relieve their friends, and would respectfully request that they be allowed to form into a military company and be mustered into Gov service and go with the expedition south to relieve their friends and assist in reclaiming the rebel Indians. A few of the Wyandotts are in service… They are all very anxious to be transferred into a company by themselves for the purpose above stated. …” – Charles Moore to Dole, February 9, 1862, Indian Office Special Files, no. 201, D576

(565) Johnson to Dole, April 2, 1862, Indian Office General Files, Delaware, 1862-1866.

(566) Johnson to Dole, November 5, 1862, ibid, Southern Superintendency 1859-1862.

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