Sometimes small incidents, rather than glorious exploits, give us the best evidence of character. So, as portrait painters are more exact in doing the face, I must give particular attention to the marks of the souls of men. — Plutarch

Hannah of Kentucky - James Otis

More Indian Murders

One morning, it was near to Christmas I remember, because of Billy's desire to have a day's hunting in the woods, Sam McQuinney and Daniel Saunders announced in the stockade that they were going out to trap turkeys, which would be cheaper than killing them with a rifle while powder cost so much money.

Billy was wild to go and I came near losing my temper when father insisted that he must work at clearing the plantation. It seemed to me wicked to make the lad grub and hew all the day long while other children in Boonesborough were given a holiday now and then.

[Illustration] from Hannah of Kentucky by James Otis

How often have I repented for these unkind thoughts, and how many times since have I dreamed that Billy was allowed to go with Sam and Daniel!

Because our people had apparently come to believe there was no longer any danger from the Indians, no one gave much heed when Sam said it was possible that he and Daniel might not come home till next day, if there was a chance of bringing back a lot of turkeys by that time, and the boys set off, calling out to Jemima as they passed her home:—

"Don't weep for us any longer, Jemima Boone, For we're coming back to see you mighty soon."

That was the last time we saw them alive.

When night came and they had not returned, every one supposed the boys had decided to wait for the first catch of turkeys; but when the sun set again, and nothing had been heard, their parents began to fear some accident had befallen them.

It was not until the third day after they went away that four of our hunters set off in search of them, and then Sam's body was found about halfway between the creek and the river. He had been scalped, most likely on the very day he left us.

Daniel has never been heard of from that time until this. His mother hopes he may yet be alive, held prisoner by the Indians; but father says he would rather see Billy lying dead before him than think of his being held captive.


Front Matter

At Boonesborough
Beginning of the Story
Boone on the Yadkin
Boone Moves his Family
Ready for the Journey
What we Wore
Driving Cattle and Sheep
Camping at Nightfall
The Long Halt
Jimmy Boone Goes to Clinch
Murder of Jimmy Boone
A Time of Mourning
The Faint-hearted Return
A New Home
Making Moccasins
Tanning Leather
Governor Dunmore
Our Home on the Clinch
Household Duties
Attacked by a Wildcat
Fighting the Wildcat
Boone and Father Return
The Wilderness Road
Building the Forts
Gathering Salt
Our Home in the Fort
Ready for Cooking
Furnishing the House
The Hominy Block
The Supply of Water
Sports Inside the Fort
Wrestling and Running
Religion of the Indians
Indian Babies
Colonel Callaway Arives
News from Eastern Colonies
Venturing Outside the Fort
Dividing the Land
Who Owned Kentucky?
Ready to Build a Home
Billy's Hard Lot
Preparing Flax
Spinning and Soap Making
Broom Making
More Indian Murders
Indian "Signs"
Woodcraft and Hunting
Pelts Used as Money
Petition of the Settlers
Making Sugar
Building Fences
Capture of the Girls
My Willful Thoughts
Finding the Trail
The Pursuit
The Story Told by Jemima
Elizabeth's Heroism
Rescuing the Girls
Alarm Among the Settlers
Indians on the Warpath
The First Wedding
The Wedding Festivities
The Brides Home
The Housewarming
Attacks by the Indians
Besieged by the Savages
In the Midst of the Fight
The Assault by the Indians
Failure of the Assault
Watchfulness of the Indians
The Sortie
My Father Wounded
Our Wounded