Hannah of Kentucky - James Otis
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.
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.