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[M640, roll 4, frame 610-612]

Report relative to the seizure of certain Negroes in the Seminole Nation by Creeks & others, by F. T. Dent, Fort Gibson, July 15, 1850.

Fort Gibson C. N.
July 15, 1850

Sir,

In answer to your communication of the 10th inst, I have the honor to reply, that on or about the 24th ultimo, a party of Creek Indians, accompanied by several white men Citizens of the United States and a few Cherokees, arrived in the vicinity of Wewoka Seminole Nation armed and equipped. I soon learned their object was to take forcible possession of a number of Negroes, at that time residing in the Seminole Nation, known as Seminole Negroes, but claimed by some of the leaders of the aforesaid party.  Much excitement was produced among the Seminole people in the vicinity, as the object of these men was not clearly known to them and when they did learn that it was their intention to attack the Negro town, many of them asserted their firm determination to assist the Negroes in defending themselves. At this stage of the affair, I considered it my duty to interfere, and I immediately by letter informed Mr. Marcellus Duval the Seminole Agent, of the arrival of the party, of the intentions of both parties, and requested his immediate presence, to prevent the pending difficulties.  I also called on Mr. N. Mackintosh, the chief or leader of the Creek party, and pointed out to him the consequences of an attack by his party. I made him clearly understand that himself and followers as individuals were by the course they were about to pursue, likely to bring on a war between the Seminole Nation and his own, and told him I should consider it my duty to interfere if he proceeded. I also informed him of my having sent for the Agent, and suggested that before he proceeded a thorough understanding should be had with the Seminole Chief.  Mr. Duval arrived the next day. Mr. Mackintosh the leader of the Creek party was directed by him to remove his party to the North Side of the North Fork of Canadian, into the Creek Country, which he did. The Agent then called a council of the Seminole Chiefs, and Mr. Nimin Mackintosh, and four others of the Creeks, were appointed to meet the Seminoles. In this Council the Seminoles agreed to admit the Creek force, and to assist them in taking and delivering over a number of Negroes, how many I did not learn. As soon as the Seminole Chiefs came to this decision I considered that any further interference on my part would presumption.

I learned from a good source, that about one hundred and eighty Negroes have been taken, many of them are only retained as prisoners for a time, in order to prevent them from giving information and support to those who had fled. All that had been taken were at the Seminole Agency, when I left Wewoka some five days since.  A large number of the Negroes about one hundred and eighty had not been taken, and were "en route" for Texas, armed and bidding defiance to any person or persons who shall attempt to take them. This party I am informed is commanded by Jim Bowlegs, a slave of Billy Bowlegs, now in Florida. All the Negroes that have been taken as yet, have been taken by the Seminoles themselves and turned over to the Creeks, who were encamped about six miles from the Negro town.

I am directed in your letter to state who are the principal men of the Creek party, and also what White men & Cherokees are engaged with them or took part in the affair. In answer I have to state that of the Creek Indians Nimin Mackintosh, Siah Hardridge, Tom Carr, Joe Smith and John Sells were the principals. The only Cherokees I observed were William Drew, Dick Drew, and Martin Vann. The White men were P. H. White of Van Buren Arks, J. M. Smith of Fort Smith Arks, Mathews a trader near the Creek Agency, and Gabriel Duval a Citizen of Montgomery Alabama.

As to the claims of the above name individuals to the Negroes they have taken, I know nothing, except from report Mr. G. Duval is acting on the part of his brother William Duval, recently deceased. The Seminole Chiefs, had made an agreement to give to W. Duval, a certain number of Negroes, for services he had rendered the Nation, which Negroes are now being turned over to G. Duval, for the estate of his brother William.

I am Sir very Respectfully
Your Obdt Servt
F. T. Dent
Bvt Capt. 5th Infy

Lieut. F. F. Flint
A. Asst Adjt General
7th Mility Department

A true copy
F. N. Page
Asst. Adjt. Genl.