Indians In Our Midst
(An 1856 Newspaper Accounting)

Long Pond, Fla., April 9, 1856…Correspondence of the Albany Patriot

Mr. Editor:-The citizens of Levy County, on yesterday, were thrown into great confusion by the startling intelligence that the Indians had attacked Mr. Enoch Daniel, some few miles below his house, on the road leading to Cedar Key. Mr. Daniel, it appears, had rode out on business; while riding along he was alarmed by the sudden appearance of a party of nine Indians, who was lying in ambush. The Indians immediately discharged their guns at Mr. Daniel, while in the act of retreating. One ball passed through the breast of his coat, without injury to his person, one other ball passed through the breach of his gun, shivering it very much. The Indians commenced their pursuit. Mr. Daniel finding they had discharged all their pieces, stopped his flight; on turning he discovered they were re-loading. Seeing one gentleman in an open space, he fired upon him; he fell and attempted to rise with assistance of a small tree, but not being able, he sank to the ground. Mr. Daniel turned and made his way toward home, followed by his enemies. Before he had gone far he met Mr. Bennett, who was going to the key for goods. Mr. Daniel told him he was pursued by Indians and to turn his wagon and to return with him as quick as possible, which he did. They continued their course and made good their retreat.

The citizens of the neighborhood were soon informed of the circumstance and they repaired to the place. They found the place where Mr. Daniel had shot the Indian and on the spot he fell they found considerable blood. They also found Mr. Daniel’s hat, which he had lost in the affray. His hat had been cut to pieces and hung on a stick in the road.  It had now got too late to pursue them that night. On the next morning, twenty of the most respectable citizens of the county met at the place and found the sign of the shots as well as their tracks and blood of the Indians. It being piney woods, we were unable to follow their trail. We continued our search to the Swena River and found plenty of signs where they had previously been. Night came on and we struck camp. Early the next morning, we again started in search of further sign. We turned toward the Gulf Hammock and there found their sign in abundance, but no Indians.

We have the Indians in our midst without a doubt and there is no place in Florida that affords greater protection for Indians than the Gulf Hammock. The mails from this place will stop. People have commenced Forting in different places.

If the Indians continue among us without the necessary protection, the people will be broken up. We have a sufficient number here, who will join a Company, which will protect our county for the present. We hope that Gen. Johnson will accept the services of our citizens, who are laboring to protect their families from the savage enemies. Pro Bono Publico - Source: Albany Patriot: 4-24-1856    

Transcribed, Formatted and Submitted by Linda Flowers by Linda Flowers


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