In the spring of the year 1782 the Indians became very numerous and
marauding bands were giving the settlers no end of trouble.
An appeal to Fort Pitt was made for soldiers to help chase them out.
A company of volunteers was raised and placed under the command of Col.
William Crawford. The regular soldiers assisted by the volunteers drove the
Indian bands across the Ohio River and north through Ohio. The Indians kept
retreating until they reached northern Ohio, where they were met by a large
supporting band of French and Indians.
Scouts reported that they were greatly outnumbered and a retreat was
ordered, whereupon some of the volunteers became panicky and Col. Crawford
and nine of his men were cut off and captured. Among this group was Dr.
Knight, a short muscular man from Bullskin Twp. These men were divided
between various bands of Indians, who either killed them or tortured them to
death. Crawford and Knight were kept together for a time and Knight was a
witness to Crawford's fate.
The Indians first bound Crawford's hands, with leather thongs with the
other end tied to a stake leaving a short length which would allow a few
turns of travel around. He was then shot at with guns at short range
loaded only with powder until his naked body was blistered from head to
He was then driven around one way then back by the Indiana squaws who
showered him with red hot wood cinders until he was wading in firey coals.
Occasionally an Indian would slash him with a knife.
During this ordeal, Simon Girty, the renegade half breed Indian trader,
sat on his horse close by. Crawford seeing him implored him to shoot him
to end his misery but Gerty only laughed and refused to interfere.
When completely exhausted Crawford fell flat in the burning cinders
when an Indian rushed to him, ran his knife around his head, then holding
his knife between his teeth tore Crawford's scalp from his head. There,
completely exhausted, smothered in cinders, death relieved his sufferings.
It is recorded that his death too place on June 10, 1782 in the valley
of the Tamooche Creek, near Sandusky, Ohio.
Dr. Knight was more lucky, as with hands tied he was being taken to
another camp for a similar fate by two Indians, one of them having been
wounded but still able to travel. The night being chilly, they decided to
build a fire to roast some meat. Knight was able to work his thongs loose
but waited for a chance to get his captors off guard. When the fire was
burning well and the Indian was tending the meat Dr. Knight went into action
by grabbing a burning stick and driving it into the Indiana's body, thereby
putting him temporarily out of normal action. He then made a break for
liberty. One Indian grabbed his gun to shoot but in the hurry he broke the
gun and Knight escaped, finally arriving at Fort Mcintosh, on the Beaver
River June 22, 1782. The last Indian massacre in Green Co. took place at
Whiteley on a Sunday morning May 12, 1782 when the McCarthy family were all
killed when on their way to church. Crawford was burned at the stake by
the Indians at a place in the Valley of the Tamooche Creek June 10, 1782.
Among the volunteers on this expedition under Co. Crawford, were men by
the familiar names of John Smilie, James and John Collins, John Sherrard and
John Crawford, a son of the Colonel."