Saint Croix Courier, St. Stephen, NB
September 1, 1892


Contributions to the History of Charlotte County and the Border Towns.


[Col. Church’s Journal, with Notes by W. F. Ganong, M. A.]

‘This Night’s Service being over immediately Col. Church leaves a sufficient guard with Gourdan, and the other Prisoners, mov’d in some Whale-boats with the rest, and as they were going spy’d a small thing upon the Water, at a great distance, which proved to be a birch Canoo, with two Indians in her; the Colonel presently ordered the lightest boat he had to make the best of her way and cut them off from Shore; but the Indians perceiving their design run their Canoo ashore & fled.  Col. Church fearing they would run directly to Sharkee made all the expedition imaginable; but it being ebb and the water low, was obliged to land & make the best of their way thro’ the woods, hoping to intercept the Indians, and get to Sharkee’s house before them; which was two Miles from where our Forces landed.  The Colonel being Ancient & Unwieldy, desired Serjeant Edee to run with him, and coming to several Trees fallen, which he could not creep under or readily get over, would lay his breast against the Tree, the said Edee, turning him over, generally had Cat luck, falling on his feet, by which means he kept in the Front; and coming near to Sharkee’s house,1 discovered some French & Indians making a Wair in the River, and presently discovered the two Indians afore-mentioned, who call’d to them at work in the River; told them there was an army of English and Indians just by; who immediately left their work and ran, endeavoring to get to Sharkee’s house; who hearing the noise, took his Lady & Child, and ran into the woods.  Our Men running briskly fired & killed one of the Indians, and took the rest Prisoners.  Then going to Sharkee’s house found a Woman and Child, to whom they gave good quarter; and finding that Madame Sharkee had left her Silk Clothes and fine linen behind her, our Forces was desirous to have pursued and taken her; But Col. Church forbid them, saying he would have her run and suffer, that she might be made sensible, what hardships our poor People had suffered by them, &c.  Then proceeded to examine the Prisoners newly taken, who gave him the same account he had before; of the Indians being up at the Falls, &c.  It being just Night prevented our attacking of them that Night.  But next morning early they mov’d up to the Falls2 (which was about a mile higher.)  But doubtless the Enemy had some Intelligence by the two afore-said Indians, before our Forces came, so that they all got on the other side of the River and left some of their goods by the Water-side, to decoy our Men, that so they might fire upon them; which indeed they affected.  But through the good Providence of God never a man of ours was kill’d and but one slightly wounded.  After a short dispute Col. Church ordered that every Man might take what he pleased of the Fish which lay bundled up, and to burn the rest, which was a great quantity.  The Enemy seeing what our Forces were about; and that their stock of Fish was destroyed;3 and the season being over for getting any more, set up a hedious Cry, and so ran all away into the woods; who being all on the other side of the River, ours could not follow them.  Having done, our Forces March’d down to their Boats at Sharkee’s4 and took their Prisoners, Bever, and other plunder which they had got, and put it into their Boats, and went down to Gourdans house, where they had left Lieut. Col. Gorham & Maj. Hilton, with part of the Forces to guard the Prisoners; (and kept a good lookout for more of the Enemy) who upon the Colonels return, gave him an account that they had made no discovery of the Enemy since he left them, &c.  Just then Her Majesty’s Ships and Transports arriving, . . .’

The remainder of the narrative does not concern our region.

1The site of Sharkee’s house is not known; the reference to the building of a weir in the river near it would seem to show it was somewhere in the vicinity of St. Stephen or Calais, as a weir would not be likely to be built above the Cove.  The more favorable situation of St. Stephen-the sunny side of the river-for a settlement, would indicate that it was more probably there than in Calais.

2Very probably Salmon Falls.  It is implied a little further on, that they did not go up in their boats-as they would almost certainly have done had it been possible, rather than march through the forest.  It is well known that the Canadian side at the Falls was a famous camping place for the Indians at early times; the Calais side was not so well adapted for this purpose.

3This reference to the stock of fish is extremely interesting, and shows that the Passamaquoddies were not so unprovident as many persons, including some writers, would have us believe.

4If our opinion that the Canadian encampment was on the Canadian side, at Salmon Falls, be correct, as seems most probable, this reference would imply that Sharkee’s house was on the Canadian side.  Considering the situation of the Cove, so favorable in many respects, it seems probable that this was its site.