Hugh Waddell’s Castaway Indians – 1756

waddellI’m ever so grateful for subscribers who are intensely interested in Native American history.  Clay read one of my articles, and contacted me regarding a question I asked.  He also provided much of the information below.  Thanks Clay.

Roberta Estes: “It would certainly be interesting to see the list of men serving in Hugh Waddell’s army of SC Indians.  If have not been able to locate the list, if it exists.  If anyone has knowledge of this, please let me know.”

Clay wonders whether Hugh Waddells’ list might be in the SC archives, not in NC, since Anson included parts of SC at one time. The article below identifies Hugh as affiliated with the Catawba Indians whose primary village was in South Carolina.  We know that some of the Catawba, during this timeframe, also were living on William Eaton’s land in Granville County, NC as well.

From the Fort Dobbs history page, we find the following information:

“Captain Hugh Waddell (1734-1773) was given the NC provincial frontier company to defend the North Carolina western frontier in 1755 by Governor Arthur Dobbs. Governor Dobbs found Waddell to be in “every way qualified for such a command, as he was young, active and resolute.”

Earlier that year, Governor Dinwiddie of Virginia offered Waddell any service in his power. The Frontier Company, forty to fifty in number, were uniformed in “blue with turned up red collars.” In 1756, Waddell served as a commissioner of peace, the only NC representative negotiating peace with the Catawbas and Cherokees.

Captain Hugh Waddell led forty-six soldiers in constructing Fort Dobbs so that colonists could be protected from possible French, Cherokee, and Catawba attacks. Following the construction of Fort Dobbs in 1756, the Frontier Company began construction of a fort for the Catawbas in present day Fort Mill, SC. However, the fort was never completed due to border disputes with South Carolina.

Dobbs continued Waddell as a captain and under General Forbes sent Waddell to the Ohio River Valley where he commanded three companies, including his own frontier company. At that time he was given commission of major to command those provincials.

During the Forbes expedition, Waddell excelled in leadership, military skills and tactics. His sergeant, John Rogers, took the only Indian prisoner who gave General Forbes intelligence concerning Fort Du Quesne. Using that intelligence, Forbes proceeded to the fort. Upon return, Waddell was given a colonel’s commission and was ordered to command the militia from Rowan, Anson and Orange counties to act along with the provincials. At that time, Waddell’ s company consisted of fifty-two provincial soldiers and thirty-four Castaway Indians.”

Waddell’s militia lists, if they could be found, would be extremely informative.  Anyone close enough to search at either the NC or SC archives?  We already know that 34 of his 86 soldiers were Native.  And what, exactly, does “Castaway Indians” mean?  Were they disconnected from their original tribe(s)?  A militia list and a few more words about the genesis of Waddell’s Indians then could answer a slew of questions today.

About Roberta Estes

Scientist, author, genetic genealogist. Documenting Native Heritage through contemporaneous records and DNA.
This entry was posted in Catawba, Cherokee, Military. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Hugh Waddell’s Castaway Indians – 1756

  1. Pamela Reeves says:

    My grandfather was a Native American fron Greenberg, SC. I am He was also a police officer there. After shooting a man who spat in his face he escaped and changed his name. I am trying to track down information in reference. I believe his grandfather was one of the castaways. My grandfather’s name was originally Westley Waddell. Later he changed it to Westley Williams.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.