Spotswood’s November 1713 Letter Regarding Tuscarora War Survivors

Many people think that most of the surviving southern band of the Tuscarora went to New York after the fall of Fort Neoheroka in March of 1713, a turning point in the Tuscarora War, or that they immediately settled with northern band Chief Tom Blount, living in present day Bertie County, who did not participate in the Tuscarora War.

We see from the letters of Alexander Spotswood that neither circumstance is true.  Many families were dispersed and in dire conditions.  Spotswood says that they were “found dispersed in small parties upon the head of the Roanoke and about the mountains in very miserable condition.”  There were over 1500 people.  It had been believed that the majority of the Tuscarora had been massacred at Tuscarora, and indeed, over 950 were killed or sold into slavery, but clearly there were nearly twice that number who survived, and probably more, assuming not all went to Williamsburg or made themselves evident.

What became of these 1500 Tuscarora?

The Official Letters of Alexander Spotswood, Lieutenant-Governor of the Colony of Virginia, 1710-1722, Vol 2, pages 46-48

Spotwood p 46

spotswood p 47

spotswood p 47bspotswood p 48


About Roberta Estes

Scientist, author, genetic genealogist. Documenting Native Heritage through contemporaneous records and DNA.
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