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[M234, roll 290, frame 637, punctuation added]

Apalachicola Agency
January 4th 1838

C. A. Harris, Esqr.

Dear Sir

I now take up my pen to write you a few hurried lines. I wrote to you on the 5th of November last requesting an early answer relative to some Creek Indian prisoners whom the Apalachicola Indians had taken some time before then.  My self & the Indians under my control have been actively engaged during the fall & until now, in searching for and bringing in those poor fugitives who have annoyed West Florida for nearly 12 months past.  We have now succeeded in bringing in every Creek Indian in West Florida, a runner has came to inform me today that they have taken 71 and will be in at Walker's Town tonight,  we had previously taken 65, making now 136.  They are nearly naked and have been starving ever since they left the Creek Nation, they have consumed what little provisions was in the Apalachicola Towns, and all hands are now without provisions.  They think that I should now provide for them all, provisions of every kind are remarkably dear in Florida and very scarce.  I confess I feel at a considerable loss in regard to furnishing them.  Persons who have any provisions to spare must have the cash for it.  Enclosed in my last letter was John Walker's & E conchattamicco's receipts for their annuity for 1836 & 1837, say 1220$, and my account for 100$ being for provisions furnished in June last & c. which I hope you have received.  I now enclose my account & receipt therewith, for my services up to 31 December which I hope on the receipt of this you will forward to me.  You cannot conceive the trouble and expense I have to incur in traversing the forests in search of those Creek Indians.  Please write me on this subject as soon as possible, my own opinion is that they should be taken to some safe place where the U.S. have provisions, say Fort Brooke at Tampa Bay, St. Augustine, or Charleston, until the Seminoles can be had and emigrate together.  But of this you will judge and advise me thereon.  In hopes to hear from you shortly, I remain your friend and humble servant.

Archibald Smith Jr.
Agent Apalachicola Indians