The Adventures of Daniel Boone: the Kentucky rifleman
by Uncle Philip
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Transcriber's Note:

In the contents list for Chapter II, 'Daniel Doone is rejoiced' was changed to 'Daniel Boone'. 'Boon' in the frontispiece illustration caption has however been retained.

Variations in use of hyphens have been standardised within the text.

Less usual spelling of words such as rackoon and periogues have been left as they appear in the original book.

The spelling of Colonel Calloway/Calaway has been left as it appears in the original.



"Too much crowded—too much crowded—I want more elbow-room."—Boone on his way to Missouri.


Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1843, By D. APPLETON & CO., in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, for the Southern District of New York.



CHAPTER I. Page. Daniel Boone is born in Bucks county, Pennsylvania—His father removes to the Schuylkill—Boone's early passion for hunting—Kills a panther—Wanderings in the woods—Is sent to school—The school is broken up—Boone returns to his sports—His father removes to the Yadkin river in North Carolina—While the farm is improving Daniel is hunting—The neighborhood begins to be settled—Daniel is dissatisfied—Settlement of Mr. Bryan—Daniel Boone goes out upon a fire hunt—Strange adventure—Marries Rebecca Bryan—Makes a home for himself on the head waters of the Yadkin—Men begin to crowd upon him—determines to move 13


Early visits to Kentucky—James McBride—Dr. Wacker and others—John Finlay goes to Kentucky trading with the Indians—Returns with glowing accounts of the country—Visits Daniel Boone and spends the winter with him—Boone is charmed with the stories—They determine in the spring to go to Kentucky—Meeting at Boone's house in May—With four companions they start for the west—Adventures by the way—They reach Finlay's old station on the Red river—Make their camp—Amuse themselves in hunting and exploring the country—Beauty of the country—Abundance of game—Boone and Stewart are taken by the Indians—Make their escape—Return to their camp—It is plundered and deserted—Arrival of Squire Boone—Daniel Boone is rejoiced to hear from his family 26


Hunting party—Stewart is killed by the Indians—narrow escape of Daniel Boone—The companion of Squire Boone returns home—The two brothers alone in the wilderness—Cheerfulness of Daniel Boone—Squire returns to the Yadkin for ammunition—Daniel lives in the forest alone—His pleasant wanderings—Singular escape from the Indians—Encounter with a bear—Looks for the return of his brother—Disappointment—Is very sad—Squire suddenly arrives with ammunition and horses—Plans for the future—Daniel Boone chooses a spot on the Kentucky river—They return for his family—Sport by the way—They reach the Yadkin—Try to beat up recruits for Kentucky—Ridicule of the people—They start with five families—Forty men join them—Disaster by the way—They return to Clinch river—Various employments of Boone—He returns to Kentucky—Builds a fort—Removes his family to Boonesborough 42


Comforts of Boonesborough—Arrival of Colonel Calaway and his daughters—Capture of three girls by the Indians—Boone and Calaway pursue—Are made prisoners—Happy escape—New emigrants—County of Kentucky—Indian warfare—Attacks upon Harrodsburgh and Boonesborough—Expedition to the salt-licks on Licking river—Courage of Boone—Overcomes two Indians—Is met by a large Indian party—Made a prisoner—His long captivity and escape 59


Indian customs noticed by Boone during his captivity—Mode of hardening children—Changing names—Marriages—Burials—War parties—Celebration of victories—Torturing prisoners—Making treaties of peace 80


Boone's disappointment upon not finding his wife—Strengthening of Boonesborough—Indian hostilities—Attack of Boonesborough—gallant defence—Boone returns to North Carolina—Occurrences during his absence—Boone returns—Goes to the Blue Licks for salt—Death of the younger Boone—Daniel Boone escapes—Kentucky divided into three counties—Hard winter of 1781—Indian hostilities—Attack on Bryant's station—Villany of Simon Girty 91


Disastrous defeat at the Blue Licks—General Clarke's campaign—Efforts to restore peace—Sullenness of the Indians—They continue their massacres—Stratagems on the Ohio—Bold defence of Captain Hubbil—Halmar's campaign—St. Clair's defeat—Debate in Congress—General Wayne takes command—Defeats the Indians—Lays waste their country—Concludes a treaty of peace with the savages in August, 1795 109


Happiness of the settlers—Boone roams through the wilderness—Civilization sickens him—He loses his lands—Moves to the Kanhawa—Disappointed in finding game—Moves to Missouri—Purchase of Missouri from the French—Anecdote related by Mr. Audubon—Boone loses his wife—His sorrow—War with England—His old age—His habits—He dies in 1818. 127


The adventures of Colonel Daniel Boone, formerly a hunter; containing a narrative of the wars of Kentucky, as given by himself. 143



Some men choose to live in crowded cities;—others are pleased with the peaceful quiet of a country farm; while some love to roam through wild forests, and make their homes in the wilderness. The man of whom I shall now speak, was one of this last class. Perhaps you never heard of DANIEL BOONE, the Kentucky rifleman. If not, then I have a strange and interesting story to tell you.

If, when a child was born, we knew that he was to become a remarkable man, the time and place of his birth would, perhaps, be always remembered. But as this can not be known, great mistakes are often made on these points. As to the time when Daniel Boone was born, there is no difficulty; but people have fallen into many blunders about the place. Some have said that he was born in England, before his parents left that country; others that he came into this world during the passage of his parents across the Atlantic. One has told us that he was born in Virginia; another in Maryland; while many have stated that he was a native of North Carolina. These are all mistakes. Daniel Boone was born in the year 1746, in Bucks county, in the state of Pennsylvania.

From some cause or other, when the boy was but three years old, his parents moved from this home, and settled upon the Schuylkill river, not far from the town of Reading. Here they lived for ten years; and it was during this time that their son Daniel began to show his passion for hunting. He was scarcely able to carry a gun, when he was shooting all the squirrels, rackoons, and even wild-cats (it is said), that he could find in that region. As he grew older, his courage increased, and then we find him amusing himself with higher game. Other lads in the neighborhood were soon taught by him the use of the rifle, and were then able to join him in his adventures. On one occasion, they all started out for a hunt, and after amusing themselves till it was almost dark, were returning homeward, when suddenly a wild cry was heard in the woods. The boys screamed out, "A panther! a panther!" and ran off as fast as they could. Boone stood firmly, looking around for the animal. It was a panther indeed. His eye lighted upon him just in the act of springing toward him: in an instant he levelled his rifle, and shot him through the heart.

But this sort of sport was not enough for him. He seemed resolved to go away from men, and live in the forests with these animals. One morning he started off as usual, with his rifle and dog. Night came on, but Daniel did not return to his home. Another day and night passed away, and still the boy did not make his appearance. His parents were now greatly alarmed. The neighbors joined them in making search for the lad. After wandering about a great while, they at length saw smoke rising from a cabin in the distance. Upon reaching it, they found the boy. The floor of the cabin was covered with the skins of such animals as he had slain, and pieces of meat were roasting before the fire for his supper. Here, at a distance of three miles from any settlement, he had built his cabin of sods and branches, and sheltered himself in the wilderness.

It was while his father was living on the head-waters of the Schuylkill, that young Boone received, so far as we know, all his education. Short indeed were his schoolboy days. It happened that an Irish schoolmaster strolled into the settlement, and, by the advice of Mr. Boone and other parents, opened a school in the neighborhood. It was not then as it is now. Good schoolhouses were not scattered over the land; nor were schoolmasters always able to teach their pupils. The schoolhouse where the boys of this settlement went was a log cabin, built in the midst of the woods. The schoolmaster was a strange man: sometimes good-humored, and then indulging the lads; sometimes surly and ill-natured, and then beating them severely. It was his usual custom, after hearing the first lessons of the morning, to allow the children to be out for a half hour at play, during which time he strolled off to refresh himself from his labors. He always walked in the same direction, and the boys thought that after his return, when they were called in, he was generally more cruel than ever. They were whipped more severely, and, oftentimes without any cause. They observed this, but did not know the meaning of it. One morning young Boone asked that he might go out, and had scarcely left the schoolroom, when he saw a squirrel running over the trunk of a fallen tree. True to his nature, he instantly gave chase, until at last the squirrel darted into a bower of vines and branches. Boone thrust his hand in, and, to his surprise, laid of hold of a bottle of whiskey. This was in the direction of his master's morning walks, and he thought now that he understood the secret of much of his ill-nature. He returned to the schoolroom; but when they were dismissed for that day, he told some of the larger boys of his discovery. Their plan was soon arranged. Early the next morning a bottle of whiskey, having tartar emetic in it, was placed in the bower, and the other bottle thrown away. At the usual hour, the lads were sent out to play, and the master started on his walk. But their play was to come afterward: they longed for the master to return. At length they were called in, and in a little time saw the success of their experiment. The master began to look pale and sick, yet still went on with his work. Several boys were called up, one after the other, to recite lessons, and all whipped soundly, whether right or wrong. At last young Boone was called out to answer questions in arithmetic. He came forward with his slate and pencil, and the master began: "If you subtract six from nine, what remains?" said he. "Three, sir," said Boone. "Very good," said the master; "now let us come to fractions. If you take three quarters from a whole number, what remains?"—"The whole, sir," answered Boone. "You blockhead!" cried the master, beating him, "you stupid little fool, how can you show that?"—"If I take one bottle of whiskey," said Boone, "and put in its place another in which I have mixed an emetic, the whole will remain, if nobody drinks it!" The Irishman, dreadfully sick, was now doubly enraged. He seized Boone, and commenced beating him: the children shouted and roared; the scuffle continued, until Boone knocked the master down upon the floor, and rushed out of the room. It was a day of freedom now for the lads. The story soon ran through the neighborhood; Boone was rebuked by his parents, but the schoolmaster was dismissed, and thus ended the boy's education.

Thus freed from school, he now returned more ardently than ever to his favorite pursuit. His dog and rifle were his constant companions, and day after day he started from home, only to roam through the forests. Hunting seemed to be the only business of his life; and he was never so happy as when at night he came home laden with game. He was an untiring wanderer.

I do not know but that this passion for roaming was in some degree inherited by Daniel Boone. His father had already had three homes: one in England, one in Bucks county, and another on the Schuylkill; and he now thought of removing further. It is said that the passion of Daniel for hunting was one cause which prompted his father to think of this. Land was becoming scarce, the neighborhood a little crowded, and game less abundant; and, to mend matters, he began to cast his eyes around for a new home. He was not long in choosing one. He had heard of a rich and beautiful country on the banks of the Yadkin river in North Carolina, and he determined that this should be the next resting-place for him and his household.

All things were made ready as soon as possible, and the journey commenced. It was a fine spring morning when the father started for his new home, with his wife and children, his flocks and herds. Their journey lay hundreds of miles through a trackless wilderness; yet with cheerful and fearless hearts they pressed onward. When hungry, they feasted upon venison and wild turkeys (for Daniel, with his rifle, was in company); when thirsty, they found cool springs of water to refresh them by the way; when wearied at night, they laid themselves down and slept under the wide-spreading branches of the forest. At length they reached the land they looked for, and the father found it to be all that he expected. The woods in that region were unbroken; no man seemed yet to have found them. Land was soon cleared, a cabin built, and the father in a little time found himself once more happily settled with his family.

The old man with his other sons went busily to the work of making a farm. As for Daniel, they knew it was idle to expect his help in such employment, and therefore left him to roam about with his rifle. This was a glorious country for the youth; wild woods were all around him, and the game, having not yet learned to fear the crack of the rifle wandered fearlessly through them. This he thought was, of all places, the home for him. I hope you will not think that he was the idle and useless boy of the family, for it was not so. While the farm was improving, Daniel was supplying the family with provisions. The table at home was always filled with game, and they had enough and to spare. Their house became known as a warm-hearted and hospitable abode; for the wayfaring wanderer, when lost in the woods, was sure to find here a welcome, a shelter, and an abundance. Then, too, if money was wanted in the family, the peltries of the animals shot by Daniel supplied it: so that he was, in a large degree, the supporter of the household. In this way years rolled onward—the farm still enlarging and improving, Daniel still hunting, and the home one of constant peace, happiness, and plenty.

At length the story of the success and comfort of the family brought neighbors around them. Different parts of the forests began to be cleared; smoke was soon seen rising from new cabins; and the sharp crack of other rifles than Daniel's was sometimes heard in the morning. This grieved him sadly. Most people would have been pleased to find neighbors in the loneliness of the woods; but what pleased others did not please him. They were crowding upon him; they were driving away his game: this was his trouble. But, after all, there was one good farmer who came into the region and made his settlement; which settlement, as it turned out, proved a happy thing for Daniel. This was a very worthy man named Bryan. He cleared his land, built his cabin upon a sloping hill, not very far from Mr. Boone's, and before a great while, by dint of industry, had a good farm of more than a hundred acres. This farm was beautifully situated. A pretty stream of water almost encircled it. On the banks of the Schuylkill, Daniel Boone found all his education, such as it was; on the banks of the Yadkin he found something far better. I must tell you now of a very strange adventure.

One evening, with another young friend, he started out upon what is called a "fire-hunt." Perhaps you do not know what this means. I will explain it to you. Two people are always necessary for a fire-hunt. One goes before, carrying a blazing torch of pitch-pine wood (or lightwood, as it is called in the southern country), while the other follows behind with his rifle. In this way the two hunters move through the forests. When an animal is startled, he will stand gazing at the light, and his eyes may be seen shining distinctly: this is called "shining the eyes." The hunter with the rifle, thus seeing him, while the other shines him, levels his gun with steady aim, and has a fair shot. This mode of hunting is still practised in many parts of our country, and is everywhere known as a fire-hunt.

Boone, with his companion, started out upon such a hunt, and very soon reached the woods skirting the lower end of Mr. Bryan's farm. It seems they were on horseback, Boone being behind with the rifle. They had not gone far, when his companion reined up his horse, and two eyes were seen distinctly shining. Boone levelled his rifle, but something prevented his firing. The animal darted off. Boone leaped from his horse, left his companion, and instantly dashed after it. It was too dark to see plainly, still he pursued; he was close upon its track, when a fence coming in the way, the animal leaped it with a clear bound. Boone climbed over as fast as he could with his rifle, but the game had got ahead. Nothing daunted by this, he pushed on, until he found himself at last not very far from Mr. Bryan's home. But the animal was gone. It was a strange chase. He determined to go into Mr Bryan's house, and tell his adventure. As he drew near, the dogs raised a loud barking, the master came out, bade him welcome, and carried him into the house. Mr. Bryan had scarcely introduced him to his family as "the son of his neighbor Boone," when suddenly the door of the room was burst open, and in rushed a little lad of seven, followed by a girl of sixteen years, crying out, "O father! father! sister is frightened to death! She went down to the river, and was chased by a panther!" The hunter and his game had met. There stood Boone, leaning upon his rifle, and Rebecca Bryan before him, gasping for breath. From that moment he continued to pursue it; Farmer Bryan's house became a favorite resort for him; he loved it as well as the woods. The business was now changed: Rebecca Bryan completely shined his eyes; and after a time, to the great joy of themselves and both families, Daniel Boone and Rebecca Bryan were married. It proved, as you will see, a very happy marriage to both parties.

Being now a married man, it became Daniel Boone's duty to seek a new home for himself. In a little time, therefore, he left his wife, and wandered into the unsettled parts of North Carolina in search of one. After moving about for some time, he found, upon the head-waters of the Yadkin, a rich soil, covered with a heavy and once more unbroken forest. "Here," thought Daniel Boone, "is the resting-place for me; here Rebecca Bryan and myself may be happy: this shall be our home." He returned to his wife, and she, with a cheerful heart, joined in all his plans. With tears in her eyes, she bade farewell to her friends; yet, with a light spirit, she started off with her husband. A clearing in the woods was soon made, a log cabin of his own soon built, and a portion of ground planted. Boone seems now to have thought that he must do something more than use his rifle. He was to make a home for his wife and busied himself, accordingly, in enlarging his farm as fast as he could, and industriously cultivating it. Still, on his busiest day, he would find a leisure hour to saunter with his gun to the woods, and was sure never to return without game. His own table was loaded with it, as when at his father's, and his house, like his father's, soon became known as a warm and kind shelter for the wandering traveller. In this industrious and quiet way of farming and hunting, years were spent, and Daniel Boone was contented and happy. Several little children were now added to his group; and, with his wife, his children, and his rifle, for companions, he felt that all was well.

But his peace was at length disturbed once more. His old troubles pursued him; men again began to come near. The crash of falling trees was heard, as the new settlers levelled the forests; huts were seen springing up all around him; other hunters were roaming through the woods, and other dogs than his were heard barking. This was more than he was willing to bear. Happy as he had made his home, he determined to leave it, and find another in the wilderness, where he could have that wilderness to himself. For some time he was at a loss to know where to go; yet his heart was fixed in the determination to move. The circumstances which pointed him to his new home, and where that new home was made, you may learn in the next chapter.


My young friends all know where the state of Kentucky is situated. It is hardly necessary for me to say, that at the time of which I am writing, that region was an unbroken wilderness.

It was in the year 1754 that a white man first visited the country of Kentucky. This was James M'Bride. In company with several others during that year, he was passing down the Ohio, when he discovered the mouth of Kentucky river, and made a landing. Near the spot where he landed, he cut upon a tree the first letters of his name; and these letters, it is said, could be seen and distinctly read for many years afterward. With his companions, he wandered through the wilderness; the country struck them all as being remarkably beautiful. It is not wonderful, then, that when they returned home, they were filled with fine stories about the new region. They declared that it was "the best tract of land in North America, and probably in the world."

In spite of their pleasant stories, however, it was a long time before any one was disposed to follow in their track. At length, Doctor Walker, of Virginia, with a number of friends, started upon a western tour of discovery. Some say that he was in search of the Ohio river particularly; others that he went merely to collect strange plants and flowers. Be this as it may, he with his party wandered through Powell's Valley, and passed the mountains at what is called the Cumberland Gap. They then crossed the Cumberland river, and roaming on through the forests, at length, after much fatigue and suffering, reached the Big Sandy. The country was beautiful, yet they were too much worn out to go further, and from this point began to return homeward. They had suffered more than M'Bride, and therefore their story was not so bright as his; yet they gave a very pleasant account of the new country.

No one yet, however, seemed ready to make his home in Kentucky; and accident at last seems to have thrown one man into that country, whose story, upon his return, made some anxious to go there. This was John Finley, a backwoodsman of North Carolina. He was in the habit of roving about and trading with the Indians. In the year 1767, he, with certain companions as fearless as himself, led on from place to place by the course of trade, wandered far into Kentucky. Here he remained for some time. It was a very beautiful, yet, as he learned also, a very dangerous country. No Indian tribe lived there, but all the tribes roamed over it as a hunting-ground. Upon these hunts, the fierce and warlike people would often meet and wage their bloody battles. These fights were so frequent and so awful, that the region was known by the name of the "Dark and Bloody Ground." In spite of danger, Finley lived there, until at last the traders and the Indians began to quarrel, and, for safety's sake, he was forced to run off. He returned to North Carolina, filled with wonderful stories. Sights like those on the "Dark and Bloody Ground," were nowhere to be seen. The land was rich, and covered with trees and flowers; there were lofty mountains, beautiful valleys, and clear streams, throughout it. Then he spoke of the strange caves in the mountains; of curious salt springs; of the footprints of men to be seen distinctly upon the solid rocks; of the strange figures of huge animals on the sides of the high cliffs. Game of all sorts was abundant, from the buffalo down to the partridge. There was no country (he declared) like Kain-tuck-kee.[1] His tale was so wonderful, that people could not well help listening to it.

[1] This was the Indian name for the country.

Whether John Finley was led there by a knowledge of the man's character, or whether it was an accident, it so happened, that about a year after his return, he wandered into the neighborhood of Daniel Boone's home. It was not long before he fell in with Boone, and completely charmed him with his stories. Boone had known some sport in the forests himself, but the adventures of Finley were to him marvellous. He was so much pleased with the man, that he invited him, as it was now winter, to come to his house, and make his home there through the season. The invitation was gladly accepted; and in the cabin of Boone, again and again was the wild beauty of the "Dark and Bloody Ground" laid before him. There was no end to Finley's stories of this region. The wind whistled without, but the fire blazed cheerfully within; and here they sat, on many a night, almost till dawn, Finley talking, and Boone listening. The end of all this was, that they determined, when spring opened, to go to Kentucky. Boone knew that there were hardships and perils in the way, and Finley had practically felt them; but what were dangers or difficulties to these fearless men? The first of May was agreed upon as the day for starting, and Finley was then again to meet Boone at his house.

It is not strange that other bold men, who heard Finley's stories, were seized with the same desire for going west. Indeed, Boone helped to give them that desire, knowing that a few brave spirits would be of great service in the new country. He talked, therefore, warmly of the comforts of a new home in the forest, where there was an abundance of game, and a complete absence of towns and villages. Accordingly, on the first of May, 1769, when Finley repaired to Boone's house, he found four others ready for the adventure: these were John Stewart, Joseph Holden, James Monay, and William Cool. The people in the neighborhood, learning what was going on, had likewise gathered to look with surprise upon these six men. What could prompt men to leave the comforts of their quiet homes, and wander off into the wilderness? They surely were crazy. Boone was much beloved as a kind neighbor, and they mourned most over his madness. Nothing daunted by all this, they were then ready for a start, and were now on the point of leaving. We are told that, with tears in his eyes, Daniel Boone kissed his wife and children; and if the story be true, I love him the more for it. His spirit was beating for his new hunting-forests; he could face all the dangers of the "Dark and Bloody Ground," but then it was doubtful whether he was not parting with his wife and children for ever. At all events, he was leaving them for months, perhaps for years—he knew not how long—and who can wonder that tears stood in his eyes? Each man shouldered his rifle, shot-bag, powder-horn, and knapsack, and off they started—every neighbor straining his eyes after them as far as he could see, as the men upon whom he was looking for the last time.

For two or three days they saw nothing new, for they were passing over their old hunting-grounds. After this, they came to a wild and trackless region, and saw from time to time the lofty ridge of mountains which separated them from the western country. In two days more, the provisions with which they had started gave out, and the first thing to be done was to find a fresh supply. Accordingly they halted, chose a suitable spot for their camp, and part of them commenced building it of logs and branches; the others went into the woods in search of game. It was impossible for such men to starve in such a region; game was abundant. The hunters returned toward night, with several deer and wild turkeys. The camp was finished, a bright fire was burning, and in a little time the venison was dressed, cooked, and eaten. The supper was scarcely finished, when they saw dark clouds gathering, and presently they were visited by a tremendous thunder-storm. The sharp lightning flashed through the woods, and the rain poured down in torrents; yet, in their camp they fearlessly sheltered themselves, the branches covering them from the rain. A man can scarcely be placed during a thunder-storm in a more dangerous place than a forest: every tree is a mark for the lightning; yet these men were calm and self-possessed, and were mercifully protected.

The storm having passed over, they made their arrangements for the night. For safety's sake, two men were to keep a constant watch, while the others slept; and in this duty of watching, they were to take turns. About midnight, while Boone and Holden were keeping the watch, a sharp shrill cry was heard in the woods. They sprang to their feet. "What noise is that?" said Holden. The sound was familiar to Boone. "Be still," said he; "it is only a panther; come along with me." Moving cautiously from the camp, they listened again for the cry. Once more they heard it. Creeping through the woods in the direction of the sound, they at length saw through the darkness the wild, glaring eyes of the animal. Boone levelled his rifle with steady aim, and fired. With a wild yell the panther fell to the ground, and began to retreat. Both were satisfied that the ball had struck him, and returned again to the camp. The crack of the rifle had waked their companions; the adventure was made known to them, and they went quietly to sleep again, satisfied that for the rest of the night at least that panther would not disturb them.

The next day was a very busy one. Finding game so plenty in the neighborhood, they determined to lay in a good supply. Part of them were therefore out in the woods, hunting, while the rest were in the camp, smoking, drying, and packing the venison for the journey. Fatigued with these labors, when night came they gladly laid themselves down, and, like wearied men, slept soundly.

By the first ray of the morning's light the camp was stirring. Shouldering their rifles and knapsacks, they started on their way. In a little time they found a dead panther. Boone declared that this was his panther; the animal was killed with one ball, and by comparing that ball with those in his shot-bag, he found they were of the same size. In two or three days they reached the foot of the mountains, and began to ascend. Their journey was now rough and wearisome, and they made slow progress. To any men but these, the mountains might have proved impassable; but they were bent upon finding the new hunting-grounds of Kentucky, and nothing could keep them back. After climbing the hills day after day, they found once more that their provisions were gone, and were again forced to halt. Their camp was built on the side of the mountain, and their rifles easily supplied their wants. The journey was rigorously renewed, and after many days of further struggling, they at length found themselves on one of the tops of the Allegany ridge. Here they were, upon Cumberland mountain. At this place they halted once more, to look down upon the magnificent prospect which was spread out before them. This was their first view of the new region, and they felt that it was all that Finley had described it to be. It was indeed a glorious country. The land was covered with trees and flowers; there were the rolling hills, and the beautiful valleys, and the clear sparkling streams, of which he had spoken.

The prospect was too beautiful to allow them to tarry long: they panted to be in that country. With more earnest desires than ever, they commenced descending the mountains. This part of the journey was comparatively easy. In a few days now they reached the western base of the hills, and entered a lovely plain. Here, for the first time, the new hunters saw the finest of western game—a herd of buffaloes. From the skirt of the wood at the end of the plain, a countless troop of these animals came rushing over it. The men were delighted; they had heard of these noble beasts of the forest, but none of them, except Finley, had ever seen one. As the mass came tramping toward them, they stood gazing in astonishment. Finley, who knew that men were sometimes trampled to death by these moving troops, kept his eye steadily upon the herd until the foremost was within rifle-shot; he then levelled his gun, and the leader fell dead. With a wild bellow the herd parted on each side of the fallen animal, and went scampering through the plain. There seemed no end to the number, as they still came rushing from the wood. The mass appeared closing again in a solid body, when he seized Holden's rifle, and shot another. Now they were completely routed; branching off on the two sides of the plain, they went bellowing and tearing past them. "An amazing country, this!" cried Boone; "who ever beheld such an abundance?" The camp was once more soon built, a blazing fire made, and, for the first time in their lives, five of these men sat down to a supper of buffalo-meat. They talked of their new country, the quantity of game, and how joyously they would roam through the huge forests, until the night had worn far away.

The next morning, after breakfast, they packed up such portions of the animals as they could readily carry, and resumed their march. In a little time they reached Red river. Here Finley began to feel more at home, for on this river he had lived. Following the course of the stream, ere long they came to the place which had been his trading-post with the Indians. They had been more than a month reaching this point, and, naturally enough, were wearied. Finley, too, could no longer guide them; and here, for the present, they determined to halt again. It was now the seventh day of June.

As this was to be their headquarters for some time, they built at once a substantial log cabin. They were now fairly in the wilds of Kentucky; and remembering that the whole region was the fighting-ground of the wandering Indians, the cabin was built not only to protect them from the weather, but to answer as a sort of fort against the savages. This shelter being provided, their whole time now was given to hunting and exploring the country. Hunting was a pastime indeed, the game was so abundant. They could look out upon herds of buffaloes scattered through the canebrakes, browsing upon the leaves of the cane, or cropping the tall grass; the deer bounded fearlessly by the very door of their hut, and wild turkeys were to be found everywhere. Everything was in a state of nature; the animals had not yet learned to be afraid of man. Of course, they did not suffer with hunger: provisions of the finest kind were ever in their cabin. But the buffaloes provided them with more than food. From time to time, as they needed moccasins for their feet, his skin supplied them; and when at night they felt the dampness of the weather, his hide was the blanket in which they wrapped themselves and slept soundly.

The country, as they wandered through it, struck them as beautiful indeed. There were the lofty trees of the forest, with no undergrowth except the cane, the grass, and the flowers. They seemed to have been planted by the hand of man at regular distances. Clear streams were seen winding through lovely meadows, surrounded by the gently-sloping hills; and the fearless buffalo and deer were their companions every hour. In their wanderings they came several times to hard and well-tramped roads. It was by following these that they discovered many of the salt springs or licks where salt is made even now. The roads to these were worn thus hard by the buffaloes and other animals that were in the habit of visiting the springs.

The place of Finley's old trading-post, where their cabin now stood, seems to have been chosen by him not only as a central point for trade: it was on the side of a finely-sloping hill, and commanded a good view of the country below. The situation was beautiful. Perhaps he chose it when he was a lonely white man in the wilderness, because thence he might readily see the approach of Indians, and make his escape, or perhaps it was the very beauty of the spot that charmed him. He had a love for the beautiful. One day, he and Boone were standing by the door of the cabin. The wind was sighing in the tops of the forest, and while they were listening to the music, they were looking out upon the beautiful region below; the grass was green, and the bright flowers turned up their leaves to the sun. "Glorious country!" cried Finley; "this wilderness does indeed blossom like the rose."—"Yes," replied Boone, "and who would live amid the barren pine-hills of North Carolina, to hear the screaming of the jay, and now and then shoot a deer too lean to be eaten? This is the land for hunters. Here man and beast may grow to their full size."

In this way, for more than six months, these men fearlessly hunted and roamed through the woods. Contrary to their expectations, through the whole summer they saw no Indians, nor did they meet with any remarkable adventure. The precaution of a nightly watch was adopted, but they met with no disturbance from man or beast. They had glorious sport by day, and slept quietly at night. After this, as you will see, they began to meet difficulties.

On the 22d of December, Boone and Stewart started off, as they had often done before, upon an exploring tour. After wandering several miles, they pressed their way through a piece of thick woods, and came out upon a boundless open forest. Here they found quantities of persimmon-trees, loaded with ripe fruit, while clusters of wild grapes covered the vines that were hanging from the lofty branches. Flowers were still in bloom, and scented the air; herds of animals might be seen through the forest in every direction: add to this that the day was beautiful, and you will not be surprised to learn that they continued to wander—indeed, that they wandered much further than they supposed. It was nearly dark when they reached the Kentucky river, and stood looking upon its rippling waters. Perceiving a hill close by, they climbed it, that they might take a better view of the course of the stream. They were now descending, on their way homeward, when suddenly they heard an Indian yell, and out rushed from the canebrake a party of savages. They had no time for resistance—indeed, time was nothing; they were overpowered by numbers. The savages seized them, took away their rifles and ammunition, bound them, and marched them off to their camp. The next morning they started off with their prisoners, the poor fellows not knowing where they were going, or what was to be done to them. They did not know one word of their language, and could therefore learn nothing: this much, however, they very well understood—that it would not do to show any signs of fear to the Indians; and therefore they went on cheerfully. In a little time they became better acquainted with their captors, and judged, from certain signs, that the Indians themselves had not determined what was to be done. Part seemed to be for sparing them, part for killing; still their cheerfulness was the same. This apparent fearlessness deceived the Indians; they supposed the prisoners were well pleased with their condition, and did not watch them closely. On the seventh night of their march, the savages, as usual, made their camp, and all laid down to sleep. About midnight, Boone touched Stewart, and waked him: now or never was their time. They rose, groped their way to the rifles, and stole from the camp. They hardly dared to look behind them; every sound startled them, even the snapping of the twigs under their feet. Fortunately, it was dark, even if the Indians pursued. They wandered all that night and the whole of the next day, when at last, without meeting a man, they reached their own camp. But what was their surprise on finding the camp plundered, and not one of their companions to be seen? What had become of them? Perhaps they were prisoners; possibly they were murdered; or it might be that they had started back for North Carolina. They were safe, but where were their comrades? Wearied in body, and tormented with fears for their friends, they commenced preparing for the night. A sound was now heard. They seized their rifles, and stood ready, expecting the Indians. Two men were seen indistinctly approaching. "Who comes there?" cried Boone. "White men and friends," was the answer. Boone knew the voice. In an instant more, his brother Squire Boone, with another man, entered the cabin. These two men had set out from Carolina for the purpose of reaching them, and had for days been wandering in search of their camp. It was a joyous meeting—the more joyous, because unexpected. Big tears were again in Daniel Boone's eyes when he heard, from his brother, that his wife and children were well.


When Squire Boone had told his brother all the news of home, it became his turn to be a listener, while Daniel talked to him of all that happened since they parted. After telling him of the beautiful country, and their happy freedom as they wandered through it for six months, then came the story of his captivity and escape. That escape was but just now made, and with a full heart he dwelt upon this part of his story. It would not have been strange if Squire had now felt alarmed; but his disposition was much like his brother's: he loved the woods, and was afraid of nothing.

In a little time, the four were once more hunting freely through the forests. Signs of Indians were to be seen around, however; possibly they were the very Indians who had captured them. In their wanderings, therefore, they kept together usually, for self-protection. One day, they started out upon a buffalo-hunt. As they came upon a herd of these animals, Stewart lodged his ball in one of them, without bringing him down. The buffalo went tearing through the forest; and Daniel Boone, with Stewart, forgetful of everything else, went chasing after him. Naturally enough, like excited men, they had no idea how far they had travelled, until their very weariness reminded them that it was time to turn back. Tired as he was, a harder race was now before Boone. They had scarcely started on their return, when a party of Indians rushed from the canebrake, and let fly their arrows. Stewart fell dead on the spot. Boone would have fired his rifle, but he felt it was useless: he could kill but one man; his only chance of escape was in flight. With Indian yells and arrows close behind him, he leaped forward, and, by tremendous exertions, at last distanced his pursuers. When he reached the camp, he fell, completely exhausted.

The party, now cut down to three, was in a little time reduced to two. From some cause or other, they could not tell what—possibly the sad story of Stewart's death, and the fear of like troubles—the companion who had come out with Squire Boone determined upon returning to North Carolina. Very soon, therefore, he left them alone in the wilderness.[2]

[2] It is said by some that this man did not thus leave them. Their story is, that the three started out upon a hunt; that this man was separated from the Boones, and became entangled in a swamp. The Boones searched for him, but could not find him. Afterward, they found fragments of his clothes, which convinced them that the poor man had been torn to pieces by wolves.

Daniel Boone, however, tells a different story. He says that the man left them, "and returned home by himself;" and I have preferred his statement to any other.

It is not strange that, being thus deserted, Squire Boone felt restless and dissatisfied; the wonder is, that Daniel was not dissatisfied likewise. But he was happy and contented, and often struggled to call up the same feelings in his brother. "You see," he would often say, "how little nature requires, to be satisfied. Happiness, the companion of content, is rather found in our own breasts than in the enjoyment of external things. I firmly believe it requires but a little philosophy to make a man happy in whatsoever state he is. This consists in a full resignation to the will of Providence; and a resigned soul finds pleasure in a path strewed with briars and thorns." This was good counsel, my young friends, and I hope you will bear it with you through life. It will serve to comfort you as much as it did Squire Boone.

To be idle, was to allow time for this melancholy, and Daniel Boone kept his brother constantly busy. The Indians, they were certain, knew where their present camp was, and therefore they resolved to make another. After choosing their spot, they employed themselves industriously in erecting another cabin, which might serve to shelter them through the coming winter. This being finished, they went to their old sport, wandering through the woods, admiring the country, and bringing down now and then a buffalo or a deer with their rifles. At night, they would return to their camp, raise a fire, cook their supper, and sit till long after midnight, talking of their old home on the Yadkin. Squire forgot his loneliness, and became quite satisfied. In this way time rolled off until the winter had passed away, and spring appeared. Strangely enough, they had been undisturbed; they had met not even with one Indian.

They had learned in the wilderness to dispense well nigh with all comforts; food and sleep were all they expected. But their powder and shot were now beginning to run low, and without these they could not long procure food. It was necessary, therefore, to make some arrangement whereby they might obtain a fresh supply. Their plan was soon settled: Squire Boone was to go back to North Carolina, and return with ammunition. They supposed horses would be valuable, also, and he was likewise to bring with him two of these. Perilous as the plan was, Squire agreed to bear his part in it, and Daniel as cheerfully consented to his. Accordingly, on the first day of May, Squire set off for the Yadkin; and, as if nothing was to be wanting to leave Daniel in perfect loneliness, their only dog followed Squire as he started.

Here, then, Daniel Boone was left entirely alone. Here he was a sort of Robinson Crusoe in the wilderness—with this difference, that Robinson was shipwrecked, and had no choice; while Boone chose the wilderness as his home. He was now completely the "man of the woods"—far away, hundreds of miles from any white settlement. For the first time in his life, according to his own confession, he felt lonely. His mind was filled with the remembrance of his wife and children, and the thought that he should never see them again. He knew, however, that sad thoughts, when indulged in, will grow very rapidly, and therefore dismissed them.

For safety's sake now, he changed his camp every night, that he might avoid the Indians. Sometimes he slept in the canebrake; sometimes he laid himself by the side of a stream; sometimes in the caves of the rocks. By day he was surrounded by his old companions the buffaloes and deer, and at night was not unfrequently disturbed by the howling of the wolves. He roamed over many a beautiful tract of country. Now he would ascend a hill, and look down upon the scene spread like a map before him; now he would trace some stream to its source, or, following the well-tramped roads of the buffaloes, would find some spring bubbling in the forest. In this way he moved over a large part of the country. At one time, he struck the Ohio river, and wandered for days on the banks of that noble stream. It is said, that in his rambles, he one day stood upon the spot where the city of Louisville now stands. He learned to love the woods more than ever. Long after this, he used to declare, that "no crowded city, with all its commerce and noble buildings, could give him as much pleasure as the beauty of Kentucky at that time afforded him."

Fortunately, he met no Indians. At one time he came in sight of a roving party, but managed to escape from them. The mode in which he escaped will show you his perfect self-possession. He had stopped one day to rest under the shade of a tree, when suddenly he spied the party in the distance. This was enough for him. He immediately commenced his course through the forest, hoping that they had not seen him, and therefore would not pursue. From time to time he would look back through the woods; and at length became convinced, to his sorrow, that if they had not seen him, they had marked his tracks, and were now on his trail. He pushed on for more than two miles, trying in various ways to break the trail, and thus put them out; still, as he looked back, he could see that they were following him He was puzzled to know what to do. A happy thought now struck him. He had just passed the brow of a small hill; the heavy grape-vines were hanging from the trees all around him. He seized one of these, and, bracing himself against the tree with his feet, threw himself as far as he could. This broke the trail, and he now kept directly on from the spot where he landed, in a different direction. The Indians came up, tracking him as far as the tree: were then lost, and gave up the chase.

Another adventure is told of him during his lonely wanderings, more perilous even than this. One day he heard a strange noise in the woods; he could see nothing, but stood ready with his rifle. Presently an immense she-bear was seen approaching him. Surrounded by her young cubs, she was doubly fierce. As she came near, Boone levelled his rifle and fired. Unfortunately, his steady eye failed this time; the ball did not strike as he had aimed, and the animal pressed forward, the more enraged. It was impossible to load again: the bear was upon him; he had only time to draw his hunting-knife from his belt. The bear laid her paws on him, and drew him toward her. The rifle in his left hand was a sort of guard, while with his right he pointed the knife directly for the heart of the animal. As she grasped him, the knife entered her body, and she fell dead.

As the time drew near for the return (as he thought) of his brother, Boone went back to the old camp where they had lodged together, to meet him. Here day after day he kept his lookout—day after day he was disappointed. He began now to be very sad. He did not doubt his brother's fidelity; he knew he would not desert him; but there were many dangers by the way, and perhaps he had perished. Then he thought, too, of his wife and little ones. If that brother had perished, he likewise must die without seeing them. Without ammunition to procure food, or defend himself, what could he do? He must die, there in the wilderness. His brother had been absent now nearly three months: surely it was time for his return. Another day of disappointment was now drawing to a close, as Boone sat, sick at heart, by the door of his cabin. A sound broke on his ear; he rose and stood listening, with his hand on the lock of his rifle. It was the tread of horses. The next moment he saw his brother through the forest leading two horses heavily laden. Here was abundance of ammunition and other comfort. The evening of the 27th of July was long after this remembered by Daniel Boone as one of the most joyous of his life.

A fire was soon made, their supper cooked, and long after midnight they sat talking. Thousands of questions were asked and answered, until, wearied out, at last they lay down to sleep. The sun was high in the heavens when they waked in the morning.

After breakfast, Daniel Boone proposed a new plan to his brother. Much as he loved the woods, he felt that two men could hardly be safe in the neighborhood of so many Indians. Moreover he longed to see his family: the stories of Squire had called up fresh recollections in his heart. The plan therefore was, to select a suitable spot for their home, then return to Carolina and bring out his family. Squire readily assented to this; and now they employed themselves for several days in hunting and laying in a supply of provisions. This being done, they went to the Cumberland river, and wandered for some time along the stream without finding a place to please them. Roaming about now, they found many new streams, to which, as the first discoverers, they gave names. Anxious as they were to return to the Yadkin, they were in no such hurry as to neglect making a full survey. The whole winter passed away before they pleased themselves. At length they came upon the Kentucky river. Here the lands delighted them. On the banks of this stream they determined to make their settlement, and now (March, 1771) turned their faces homeward. As he left the chosen spot, Boone says that "he felt it was a second paradise, and was resolved, at the risk of his life and fortune, that his family should have a home there."

As they journeyed eastward from the Kentucky river, they occasionally blazed their pathway (as huntsmen say) that they might find their way back. It was necessary thus to leave some track through the forest wilderness, that they might again reach their chosen spot.[3] Fortunately they met with no Indians.

[3] This mode of marking their track is often practised by hunters in the woods. As they pass through the forest, they mark the trees by cutting off a small piece of the bark. This enables them again to find the same pathway, and is commonly called "blazing the track."

We hear of but one adventure on their way homeward. After travelling quietly several days, they were one morning startled by a noise. Presently a herd of buffaloes came rushing and tearing through the forest; they seemed frantic. The cause of all this was soon seen. A panther, seated upon the back of one of the buffaloes, had plunged his claws and teeth into him. The blood was streaming down his sides, and the poor animal, struggling to shake him off, rushed into the midst of the herd. This frightened the rest, and they went bellowing and dashing through the woods. Daniel Boone raised his rifle, and sent a ball through the panther. He fell dead. Not far off they met a pack of wolves, following as usual in the track of the buffaloes. For the fun of seeing them scatter, Squire now fired his rifle, and away they went, scampering in all directions.

In due time they came to the mountains. After trying to ascend in various places, at length they found a narrow and rugged gap, through which with great difficulty they made their way. It was, however, the best pass they could discover, and they blazed their track, that they might find it again. In a little time now, Daniel Boone was again in his cabin on the banks of the Yadkin. I need hardly say there was a joyous meeting; he was once more happy in the bosom of his family. He had been absent nearly two years.

Amid the joys of home, however, he did not forget his chosen spot in Kentucky; his heart was filled with the thought that his happy home might be happier there. As this was to be his final move, it was necessary to settle all his business on the Yadkin; and as he had tried the wilderness, he felt that a few trusty companions would be invaluable in that new region. He commenced, therefore, making what he thought proper preparations for a return. To beat up such neighbors as they desired, he and Squire gave glowing accounts of the new country; the rich lands, the forests, the streams, the flowers, and the game, were all talked of. They saw only, and consequently spoke only, of the bright side of the picture. But there were numbers of people to talk of difficulties; these spoke of the folly of the Boones, in thinking of making such a country their home, and the madness of any man who should think of following them; the country was wild, and all who settled there must suffer many privations: then, too (according to their story), it was afflicted with terrible diseases, and they might all expect to die there, or, if they escaped the climate, they must fall into the hands of the fierce and cruel Indians who roamed through those forests; the place they declared was so dangerous that it was known, wherever it was known, as "the dark and bloody ground." With these sad stories floating about continually, it is not wonderful that the Boones found difficulty in beating up companions, and that more than two years passed away before they were ready for a start. At the end of that time they found that, while many were opposed to them, and others wavering as to what they would do, there were some, prompted by a spirit of bold adventure, ready to join them. Five families were willing to go with them to Kentucky.

Daniel Boone now sold his farm, and all things being made ready, on the 25th of September, 1773, the little company bade farewell to their friends and started for the west, driving before them their flocks and their herds. In their route, not a great way from the Yadkin, was the settlement of Powel's valley. The story of their plan had spread through the neighborhood, and when they reached this spot they were delighted to find that the people were not so timid as those on the Yadkin: forty men here joined the party. Now they travelled on in high spirits; the whole body, old and young, numbering between seventy and eighty souls.

In a little time they came to the mountains, and found the pathway blazed by the Boones. In less than a fortnight they passed the first ridge of the Alleganies, known as "Powel's range," and were now quietly descending the second, known as "Walden's range," when sorrow overtook them. They were in a dark and narrow gap, when the wild yell of Indians broke upon their ears. The savages rushed into the gap behind them, and let fly their arrows. Six of the party fell dead, a seventh was wounded. The men rallied around the women and children; the first discharge of their rifles scattered the savages. But the mischief was done; the sudden attack of the Indians was like a flash of lightning; they were seen only for an instant; yet, like the lightning, they had done their work: there were the dead, and alas! among them was the oldest son of Daniel Boone.

The party, a little time before so happy, was now in deep sorrow. What was to be done? The Indians had not only killed their companions, but their flocks and herds had all fled in fright, and could not be again gathered together. In dismay, the greater part were for retreating instantly to the nearest white settlement; this was upon the Clinch river, forty miles behind them. The Boones begged them to keep on their way—not to think of turning back; but it was all to no purpose; most of them insisted on retreating, and they at length yielded to the general desire. Accordingly, the dead were decently buried, and in great sadness they all traced their way back to Clinch river.

Here Daniel Boone remained with his family eight months. At the end of that time he was requested by Governor Dunmore, of Virginia, to go to the falls of the Ohio, to serve as a guide to a party of surveyors who had been sent there some months before. The western country was now beginning to attract attention, and the Indians were becoming very hostile to the whites. Accordingly, on the 6th of June, 1774, he started (with one man, Michael Stoner), and without any accident reached the point at which he aimed—the spot where Louisville now stands. The service for the surveyors was promptly performed, and they were enabled to complete their work, while Boone was at liberty to return to his family. It is remarkable that he made this journey on foot, a distance of eight hundred miles, through a trackless wilderness, in the short period of sixty-two days.

He was not allowed to remain quiet long; soon after his return, the Indians northwest of the Ohio, especially the Shawanese, made open war upon the whites. Governor Dunmore felt bound to protect his countrymen, and, among other acts for their defence, sent Daniel Boone, with the title of captain, to take command of three garrisons. This service was likewise well performed; matters were soon more quiet, the soldiers were discharged, and Boone was relieved from his post.

He had not been a wanderer in the woods in vain; his fame had gone abroad, and his services were in the following spring sought again. A company of gentlemen in North Carolina—the principal man of whom was Colonel Richard Henderson—were attempting to purchase the lands on the south side of the Kentucky river, from the Cherokee Indians.[4] They had agreed to hold a treaty with the Indians, at Wataga, in March, 1775, to settle the boundaries of their intended purchase, and they now desired Boone to attend that treaty, and manage their business. In compliance with their wish, he went to Wataga, and performed their service so well, that they gave him further employment. He was now requested to mark out a road from their settlement, through the wilderness, to Kentucky river. This was a work of great labor. It was necessary to make many surveys to find the best route, and when the best was found, it was, much of it, over mountains and rugged regions. With a number of laborers, he commenced the work. He met with two attacks from the Indians by the way, in which four of his men were killed, and five wounded. Undaunted, he pushed resolutely on, and, in the month of April, reached the Kentucky river. To guard themselves from the savages, they immediately commenced the building of a fort at a salt lick, about sixty yards from the south bank of the stream. The Indians annoyed them from time to time, while they were thus engaged, but fortunately killed but one man. On the 14th day of June the fort was finished, and Boone started back for his family on Clinch river. As an honor to him, the party gave to this first settlement in the wilderness of Kentucky the name of Boonesborough.

[4] It is said that it was by Daniel Boone's advice that they first thought of making this purchase.

He reached his family without accident, and, as rapidly as he could, retraced his way with them through the forest. The fort consisted of several cabins, surrounded by pickets ten feet high, planted firmly in the ground. In one of these, Daniel Boone found a shelter for his family. The long desire of his heart was at last gratified: he had a home in Kentucky. He was the first settler of that region, and (as he proudly said) his "wife and daughter the first white women that ever stood on the banks of Kentucky river."


It was now the season of autumn; the trees had not yet shed their leaves, and the forests were still beautiful. Mrs. Boone felt happy as she looked upon her new home. Winter came, and glided rapidly and joyously away. With their axes and rifles, the men in the settlement brought in constant and ample supplies of fuel and game, and around the blazing hearth of Daniel Boone there was not one in the family who sighed for the old home on the Yadkin. Boone naturally supposed that a fear of the Indians would be the principal trouble with his wife; and well she might dread them, remembering the loss of her son formerly in the pass of the mountains. Fortunately, however, she did not see an Indian through the season. But one white man was killed by them during the winter, and he lost his life by unfortunately wandering away from the fort unarmed. After this, the other settlers were more prudent; they never went without the pickets for fuel without taking their rifles.

When spring opened, they were soon very busy. A small clearing without the pickets was first made for a garden-spot. Mrs. Boone and her daughter brought out their stock of garden-seeds, and commenced cultivating this, while the men went on earnestly in the work of preparing for their fields. They were calculating that they were making their homes for life. Day after day the neighborhood resounded with the crash of falling trees, as these hardy men levelled the forests. While they were thus engaged, they were made happy by a new arrival. Colonel Calloway, an old companion of Boone's, led by the desire of finding his old friend and a new country, came out to the settlement this spring, and brought with him his two young daughters. Here, then, were companions for Boone's daughter. The fathers were happy, and the mother and girls delighted.

Spring had not passed away, however, before they were in sorrow about these children. When the wild flowers began to bloom in the woods, the girls were in the habit of strolling around the fort and gathering them to adorn their humble homes. This was an innocent and pleasant occupation; it pleased the girls as well as their parents. They were only cautioned not to wander far, for fear of the Indians. This caution, it seems, was forgotten. Near the close of a beautiful day in July, they were wandering, as usual, and the bright flowers tempted them to stroll thoughtlessly onward. Indians were in ambush; they were suddenly surrounded, seized, and hurried away, in spite of their screams for help. They were carried by their captors to the main body of the Indian party, some miles distant. Night came, and the girls did not return; search was made for them, and they were nowhere to be found. The thought now flashed upon Boone that the children were prisoners; the Indians had captured them. The parents were well nigh frantic: possibly the girls were murdered. Boone declared that he would recover his child, if alive, if he lost his own life in the effort. The whole settlement was at once roused: every man offered to start off with the two fathers in search of the children. But Boone would not have them all; some must remain behind, to protect the settlement. Of the whole number he chose seven; he and Calloway headed them; and, in less time than I have been telling the story, laden with their knapsacks and rifles, they were off in pursuit.

Which way were they to go? It was a long time before they could find a track of the party. The wily Indians, as usual, had used all their cunning in hiding their footprints and breaking their trail. Covering their tracks with leaves; walking at right angles occasionally from the main path; crossing brooks by walking in them for some time, and leaving them at a point far from where they entered: all this had been practised, and I presume that the fathers never would have got on the track if the girls had not been as cunning as their captors. After wandering about for some time, they came at length to a brook, and waded along it for a great while in search of footprints. They looked faithfully far up and down the stream, for they knew the Indian stratagem. Presently Calloway leaped up for joy. "God bless my child!" cried he; "they have gone this way." He had picked up a little piece of riband which one of his daughters had dropped, purposely to mark the trail. Now they were on the track. Travelling on as rapidly as they could, from time to time they picked up shreds of handkerchiefs, or fragments of their dresses, that the girls had scattered by the way. Before the next day ended, they were still more clearly on the track. They reached a soft, muddy piece of ground, and found all the footprints of the party; they were now able to tell the number of the Indians. The close of the next day brought them still nearer to the objects of their search. Night had set in; they were still wandering on, when, upon reaching a small hill, they saw a camp-fire in the distance. They were now delighted; this surely was the party that had captured the girls. Everything was left to the management of Boone. He brought his men as near the fire as he dared approach, and sheltered them from observation under the brow of a hill. Calloway and another man were then selected from the group; the rest were told that they might go to sleep: they were, however, to sleep on their arms, ready to start instantly at a given signal. Calloway was to go with Boone; the other man was stationed on the top of the hill, to give the alarm, if necessary. The two parents now crept cautiously onward to a covert of bushes not far from the fire. Looking through, they saw fifteen or twenty Indians fast asleep in the camp; but where were the girls? Crawling to another spot, they pushed the bushes cautiously aside, and, to their great joy, saw in another camp the daughters sleeping in each other's arms. Two Indians with their tomahawks guarded this camp. One seemed to be asleep. They crept gently around in the rear of this. They were afraid to use their rifles: the report would wake the other camp. Calloway was to stand ready to shoot the sleeping Indian if he stirred, while Boone was to creep behind the other, seize, and strangle him. They were then to hurry off with the children. Unfortunately, they calculated wrong: the Indian whom they supposed to be sleeping was wide awake, and, as Boone drew near, his shadow was seen by this man. He sprang up, and the woods rang with his yell. The other camp was roused; the Indians came rushing to this. Boone's first impulse was to use his rifle, but Calloway's prudence restrained him. Had he fired, it would have been certain destruction to parents and children. They surrendered themselves prisoners, pleading earnestly at the same time for their captive daughters. The Indians bound them with cords, placed guards over them, and then retired to their camp. The poor girls, roused by the tumult, now saw their parents in this pitiable condition. Here they were, likewise made captives, for their love of them.

There was no more sleep in the Indian camp that night. Till the dawn of the day they were talking of what should be done to the new prisoners: some were for burning them at the stake; others objected to this. Boone and Calloway were to be killed, but they were too brave to be killed in this way. Some proposed making them run the gauntlet. At last it was decided (in pity for the girls, it is said) that the parents should be killed in a more decent and quiet way. They were to be tomahawked and scalped, and the girls were still to be kept prisoners. With the morning's light they started out to execute the sentence. That the poor girls might not see their parents murdered the men were led off to the woods, and there lashed to two trees. Two of the savages stood before them with their tomahawks, while the rest were singing and dancing around them. At length the tomahawks were lifted to strike them; at that instant the crack of rifles was heard, and the two Indians fell dead. Another and another report was heard: others fell, and the rest fled in dismay. Boone's companions had saved them. All night long they had waited for the signal: none had been given; they had heard the Indian yell; they feared that they were taken. They had watched the camp with the greatest anxiety, and now had delivered them. They were instantly untied; the girls were quickly released, and in the arms of their parents; and they all started joyously homeward. Mrs. Boone was delighted to see them. The party had been so long gone, that she feared her husband and child were alike lost to her for ever.

It is not surprising that when men found out that a settlement had been made in Kentucky, others were soon ready to start off for that fertile region. Accordingly, we find many arriving this year, and settling themselves in the country. Harrod, Logan, Ray, Wagin, Bowman, and many other fearless spirits, now threw themselves, like Boone, into the heart of the wilderness, and made their forts, or stations, as they were called. These were just like the home of Boone—nothing more than a few log cabins, surrounded by pickets. Indeed, the country began now to assume so much importance in the eyes of men, that the Governor of Virginia thought proper to take some notice of it. When the legislature met, he recommended that the southwestern part of the county of Fincastle—which meant all the large tract of country west of the Alleganies now known as Kentucky—should be made into a separate county, by the name of Kentucky. The legislature thought it well to follow his advice. The new county was made, and had the privilege of sending two members to the Virginia legislature.

Nor is it surprising that the Indians began now to be more violent than ever in their enmity. They had been unwilling before that a white man should cross their path as they roamed over their hunting-grounds; but now, when they saw clearings made, and houses built, they felt that the whites meant to drive them for ever from that region. Their hatred consequently increased now every hour. Another circumstance at this time served to rouse them the more against the settlers. If you will think of the period of which I am speaking (the year 1776), perhaps you may guess what it was. The colonists of America in that year, you will remember, declared themselves independent of Great Britain. In the war which followed (known among us always as the Revolutionary War), England struggled hard to subdue them; nor was she always choice as to the means which she used for the purpose. She did not hesitate even to rouse the red men of the forests, and give them arms to fight the colonists. They were not only turned loose upon them with their own tomahawks and scalping-knives, but were well supplied with British rifles and balls. All the new settlements in the land were troubled with them, and Kentucky had to bear her part of the sorrow. These Indians would scatter themselves in small parties, and hang secretly for days and nights around the infant stations. Until one is acquainted with Indian stratagems, he can hardly tell how cunning these people are. By day they would hide themselves in the grass, or behind the stumps of trees, near the pathways to the fields or springs of water, and it was certain death to the white man who travelled that way. At night they would creep up to the very gateway of the pickets, and watch for hours for a white man. If any part of his person was exposed, he was sure to catch a rifle-ball. It was impossible to discover them, even when their mischief was done. They would lie in the grass flat on their bellies for days, almost under the very palisades. Sometimes an Indian yell would be heard near one point of the fort, startling all the settlers—a yell raised only to draw them all in one direction, while the Indians did their mischief in another. In this sneaking mode of warfare, men, women, and children, were killed in many places; and not unfrequently whole droves of cattle were cut off.

At length, to the great joy of the settlers, the Indians began to show themselves more boldly: for anything was better than these secret ambushes of the savages; an open enemy is not so much to be dreaded as a secret one. Boonesborough and Harrodsburgh (a settlement made by James Harrod, a bold adventurer from the banks of the Monongahela) were now the principal stations. Toward these, new emigrants were from time to time moving, and against these stations, as being the strongest, the Indians felt the greatest hatred, and directed their principal attacks. Early in the spring of 1777, a party was moving toward Harrodsburgh: fortunately, the Indians attacked them; for, though two whites were killed, the attack probably saved the settlement. It was only four miles from the place, and the Indians were now on their way there. One young man escaped in the midst of the fight to give the alarm at Harrodsburgh. The station was instantly put in a state of defence. Ere long, the Indians appeared. A brisk firing at once commenced on both sides; the savages saw one of their men fall, and finding that they were not likely to gain any advantage, soon scattered for the woods. The whites lost one man also, and three were slightly wounded.

On the 15th of April, a party of one hundred savages appeared boldly before Boonesborough. Every man of them was armed with his gun, as well as bow and arrows. Boone, however, was prepared for them, and gave them a warm reception—so warm, that they soon gladly retreated. How many of their men were killed it was impossible to tell, for they dragged away their dead with them. In the fort one man was killed, and four were badly wounded.

Their loss this time only served to make them more revengeful. In July following they again came against Boonesborough, resolved upon vengeance. They numbered this time more than two hundred. To prevent any of the white settlements from sending aid to Boonesborough, they had sent off small parties to molest them, and keep them busy. The savages now commenced their attack, and for two days a constant firing was kept up. At last, finding their efforts again idle, they raised a loud yell, and returned to the forests. The whites could now count their slain and wounded as they dragged them off: seven were killed, and numbers wounded, while in the fort only one white man was slain. In spite of their numbers and their cunning, they did but little harm: for Boone was never found sleeping; he knew that Indians were his neighbors, and he was always ready for them. After this, they learned to dread him more than ever. He now went by the name of the "Great Long Knife."

Attacks of this kind were made from time to time openly against the settlements, but especially against these two principal stations. They all ended very much in the same way, and it would only weary you if I should attempt to speak of them. It is enough for you to know that the whites were always on the lookout, and that Boone was regarded as their principal leader and protector. We will pass on, therefore, to something more interesting.

I have already stated that the stations of these settlers were usually built, for comfort's sake, in the neighborhood of salt licks or springs; and near such a lick, as you will remember, Boonesborough stood. The supply of salt, however, was not sufficient; new settlers were often arriving, and it became necessary to seek a place which would afford more of that article. Boone was the father of the settlement, and he undertook to find it. Having selected thirty men as his companions, on the 1st of January, 1778, he started for the Blue Licks, on Licking river—a stream, as you know, emptying itself into the Ohio opposite where Cincinnati now stands. Upon reaching this spot, the thirty men were soon very busy in making salt. Boone, having no taste for the work, sauntered off to employ himself in shooting game for the company. He had wandered some distance from the river one day, when suddenly he came upon two Indians armed with muskets. It was impossible for him to retreat, and the chances were against him if he stood. His usual coolness did not forsake him; he instantly jumped behind a tree. As the Indians came within gun-shot, he exposed himself on the side of the tree: one savage immediately fired, and Boone dodged the ball. One shot was thus thrown away, and this was just what he desired. Exposing himself immediately in precisely the same way, the other musket was discharged by the other Indian, to as little purpose. He now stepped boldly out; the Indians were trying hard to load again; he raised his rifle, and one savage fell dead. He was now on equal terms with the other. Drawing his hunting-knife, he leaped forward and placed his foot upon the body of the dead Indian; the other raised his tomahawk to strike but Boone, with his rifle in his left hand, warded off the blow, while with his right he plunged his knife into the heart of the savage. His two foes lay dead before him. If you should ever visit Washington city, you will see a memorial of this deed. The act is in sculpture, over the southern door of the rotundo of the capitol.

After this he continued his hunting excursions as usual, for the benefit of his party; but he was not so fortunate the next time he met with Indians. On the 7th of February, as he was roaming through the woods, he saw a party of one hundred savages on their way to attack Boonesborough. His only chance for escape now was to run. He instantly fled, but the swiftest warriors gave chase, and before a great while he was overtaken and made a prisoner. He was, of all men, the one whom they desired to take; they could now gain, as they thought, some information about Boonesborough. They now carried him back to the Blue Licks. As they drew near, Boone, knowing that it was idle to resist, made signs to the salt-makers to surrender themselves. This they did, and thus the savages soon had in their possession twenty-eight captives. Fortunately for themselves, three of the men had started homeward with a supply of salt, and thus escaped.

Now was the time for the savages to have attacked Boonesborough; for, with the loss of so many men, and Boone their leader, we may readily suppose that the station might have surrendered. Flushed, however, with the capture of their prisoners, they seem not to have thought of it any longer.

The prisoners were marched immediately to Old Chilicothe, the principal Indian town on the Little Miami, where they arrived on the 18th. There was great rejoicing over them when they reached this old settlement of the savages, though Boone says they were "treated as kindly as prisoners could expect." Early in the next month Boone with ten of his men was marched off to Detroit by forty Indians. Here Governor Hamilton, the British commander of that post, treated them with much kindness. The ten men were soon delivered up for a small ransom. But when the Governor offered them one hundred pounds to give up Boone, that he might allow him to return home, they refused to part with him; they looked upon him as too dangerous an enemy to be allowed to go free upon any terms. Several English gentlemen were moved with pity when they saw Boone thus a helpless prisoner, and offered to supply his wants. He thanked them for their feeling, but refused to receive any aid, stating that he never expected to be able to return their kindness, and therefore was unwilling to receive it. The truth was, he was not disposed to receive assistance from the enemies of his country.

With no other prisoner than Boone, the party now started again for Old Chilicothe. As they drew near, after a very fatiguing march, Boone thought he understood why they had refused to part with him. Before they entered the village, they shaved his head, painted his face, and dressed him like themselves; they then placed in his hands a long white staff, ornamented with deers' tails. The chief of the party then raised a yell, and all the warriors from the village answered it, and soon made their appearance. Four young warriors commenced singing as they came toward him. The two first, each bearing a calumet, took him by the arms and marched him to a cabin in the village; here he was to remain until his fate was made known to him. Of all strange customs of the Indians (and he had seen many of them), this was the strangest to him. It is not wonderful that he thought he was now to die.

Yet this was a common custom (it is said) among the Shawanese, who inhabited this village. Prisoners were often thus carried to some cabin, and then the Indian living in the cabin decided what should be done—whether the prisoner should die, or be adopted into the tribe. It happened that in this cabin lived an old Indian woman, who had lately lost a son in battle. She, of course, was to decide Boone's fate. She looked at him earnestly, admired his noble bearing and cheerful face, and at length declared that he should live. He should be her son, she said; he should be to her the son whom she had lost. The young warriors instantly announced to him his fate, and the fact was soon proclaimed through the village. Food was brought out and set before him; and every effort, which Indian love could think of, was used to make him happy. He was fairly one of the tribe; and the old woman who was to be his mother was especially delighted.

He was now as free as the rest; his only sorrow was that he had to live among them. He knew, too, that if he should be caught trying to make his escape, it would be certain death to him. He pretended, therefore, to be cheerful and happy; and fortunately his old habits enabled him to play his part well. Like them, he was a man of the woods, and as fond of hunting as any of them. They all soon became attached to him, and treated him with the utmost confidence.

Sometimes large parties would go out to try their skill at their sports of racing and shooting at a mark. Boone was always with them; he knew, however, that in trials of this kind the Indians were always jealous if they were beaten, and therefore he had to act very prudently. At racing, they could excel him; but at shooting, he was more than a match for any of them. Still, when the target was set up, he was always certain to be beaten. If he shot too well, they would be jealous and angry; if he shot badly, they would hold him in contempt: and therefore he would manage to make good shots, and yet never be the successful man. He knew too much of Indians not to conduct himself properly.

Sometimes they would start out upon hunting parties. Here Boone was at home; there was no jealousy when he brought down a buffalo or a deer with his rifle-ball. He might do his best; they were true hunters themselves, and were delighted with every successful shot. Returning to the village, Boone would always visit the Shawanese chief, and present him a portion of his game. By this kindness and civility he completely won the heart of the chief, and was not unfrequently consulted by him on important matters. Thus he passed his time, joining in all their modes of living; he was beloved by the old woman, the chief, and all the tribe: and none suspected that he was not contented and happy.

On the 1st of June, a large party was starting from the village for the salt-licks on the Scioto, to make salt. Boone pretended to be indifferent whether he went or not. The truth was, however, that he was very anxious to go, for he thought it would afford a fine opportunity for him to escape. He seemed so indifferent about the matter, that the party urged him to accompany them, and off he started. For ten days most of them were busy making salt, while Boone and two or three of the best marksmen hunted for the benefit of the rest. He watched his chance for escape, but none occurred; he was closely observed, it was impossible for him to attempt it. To his great sorrow, he was forced to return home with the salt-makers.

They had scarcely got back, when the whole village was summoned to the council-house, to attend a council of war. Boone, as belonging to one of the principal families, went to this council. Here he met four hundred and fifty armed Indians, all gayly painted. One of the oldest warriors then struck a large drum, and marched with the war-standard three times round the council-house: this was the sure signal that they were about to make war upon some enemy. But who was the enemy? What was Boone's surprise when it was announced that they meant to attack Boonesborough! He resolved now that he would escape, even at every hazard, and alarm the settlement. Still his prudence did not forsake him.

The old warriors at once commenced gathering together a supply of parched corn, and beating up more recruits for the expedition. All the new men (Boone among the rest, for he was forced to join them) were then marched off to the "winter-house" to drink the war-drink. This was a mixture of water and bitter herbs and roots, and was to be drank steadily for three days, during which time no man was to eat a morsel. Even if a deer or buffalo passed by, no man was to kill it; the fast must be kept. In fact, no man was allowed even to sit down, or rest himself by leaning against a tree. This was done by the old men to purify the young warriors, as they said, and to gain the favor of the Great Spirit. All this was a common practice with the tribe before they went to battle; and the more strictly the fast was kept, the greater (as they supposed) were the chances of success. During these three days, Boone, like the rest, kept the fast, drank the war-drink, and did not even leave the "medicine-ground."

The fast being over, they fired their guns, yelled, danced, and sang; and in the midst of this noise the march commenced. The leading war-chief, bearing the medicine-bag, or budget (as it was called), went before; the rest followed in single file. Nothing but shouting and yelling, and the noise of guns, was heard, as they passed through the village. When they reached the woods, all the noise ceased; they were fairly on their march, and that march was to be made after the Indian fashion, in dead silence. For several days this dead march was kept up, Boone looking every hour for his chance of escape. At length, early one morning, a deer dashed by the line. Boone leaped eagerly after him, and started in pursuit. No sooner was he out of sight of the Indians, than he pressed for Boonesborough. He knew they would give chase, and therefore he doubled his track, waded in streams, and did everything that he could to throw them off his trail. Every sound startled him; he thought the Indians were behind him. With no food but roots and berries, and scarcely time to devour these, he pushed through swamps and thickets for his old home. Now or never was his chance for liberty, and as such he used it. At length, after wandering nearly two hundred miles, on the fourth day he reached Boonesborough in safety.


Before we go on, let me tell you of some of the curious customs which Boone noticed among the Indians, during his captivity. He had a fine opportunity for observation, and I think these strange customs will interest you.

It is not wonderful that Indian men and women are so hardy; they are trained to it from their youth: and Boone tells us how they are trained. When a child is only eight years old, this training commences; he is then made to fast frequently half a day; when he is twelve, he is made to fast a whole day. During the time of this fast, the child is left alone, and his face is always blacked. This mode of hardening them is kept up with girls until they are fourteen—with boys until they are eighteen. At length, when a boy has reached the age of eighteen, his parents tell him that his education is completed, and that he is old enough to be a man! His face is now to be blacked for the last time. He is taken to a solitary cabin far away from the village; his face is blacked, and then his father makes to him a speech of this kind: "My son, the Great Spirit has allowed you to live to see this day. We have all noticed your conduct since I first began to black your face. All people will understand whether you have followed your father's advice, and they will treat you accordingly. You must now remain here until I come after you." The lad is then left alone. His father then goes off hunting, as though nothing had happened, and leaves his boy to bear his hunger as long it is possible for him to starve and live. At length he prepares a great feast, gathers his friends together, and then returns. The lad is then brought home, his face is washed in cold water, his hair is shaved, leaving nothing but the scalp-lock; they all commence eating, but the food of the lad is placed before him in a separate dish. This being over, a looking-glass and a bag of paint are then presented to him. Then they all praise him for his firmness, and tell him that he is a man. Strange as it may seem, a boy is hardly ever known to break his fast when he is blacked this way for the last time. It is looked upon as something base, and they have a dread that the Great Spirit will punish them if they are disobedient to their parents.

Another curious habit which surprised Boone was that of continually changing names. A white man carries the same name from the cradle to the grave, but among these people it was very different. Their principal arms, as you know, are the tomahawk and scalping-knife, and he who can take the greatest number of scalps is the greatest man. From time to time, as warriors would return from an attack upon some enemy, these new names would begin to be known. Each man would count the number of scalps he had taken, and a certain number entitled him to a new name, in token of his bravery. It is not wonderful that they were revengeful, when they were stimulated by this sort of ambition. Besides this, they believed that he who took the scalp of a brave man received at once all his courage and other good qualities; and this made them more eager in their thirst for scalps. In this way, names of warriors were sometimes changed three or four times in a year.

Marriages in this tribe were conducted very decently. When a young warrior desired to marry, he assembled all his friends, and named the woman whom he wished for his wife. His relations then received his present, and took it to the parents of the young woman. If they were pleased with the proposal, they would dress the young woman in her gayest clothes, and take her, with bundles of presents, to the friends of the warrior; then, if she pleased, she was to be married. There was no compulsion in the matter. If she was not satisfied, she had only to return his present to the young warrior, and this was considered a refusal.

Their mode of burying their dead was very much like that of all the Indians. The dead body was sometimes placed in a pen made of sticks and covered over with bark; sometimes it was placed in a grave, and covered first with bark, and then with dirt; and sometimes, especially in the case of the young, it was placed in a rude coffin, and suspended from the top of a tree. This last was a common mode of infant burial, and the mother of the child would often be found, long after, standing under the tree, and singing songs to her babe.

Boone witnessed, too, the mode in which war-parties start off for war. The budget, or medicine-bag, is first made up. This bag contains something belonging to each man of the party—something usually representing some animal, such as the skin of a snake, the tail of a buffalo, the horns of a buck, or the feathers of a bird. It is always regarded as a very sacred thing. The leader of the party goes before with this; the rest follow in single file. When they come to a stand, the budget is laid down in front, and no man may pass it without permission. To keep their thoughts upon the enterprise in which they are engaged, no man is allowed to talk of women or his home. At night, when they encamp, the heart of whatever animal has been killed during the day is cut into small pieces and then burnt. During the burning no man is allowed to step across the fire, but must always walk around it in the direction of the sun. When they spy the enemy, and the attack is to be made, the war-budget is opened. Each man takes out his budget, or totem, and fastens it to his body. After the fight, each man again returns his totem to the leader. They are all again tied up, and given to the man who has taken the first scalp. He then leads the party in triumph home.

Boone had not long been a prisoner among them when a successful war-party returned home and celebrated their victory. When the party came within a day's march of the village, a messenger was sent in to tell of their success. An order was instantly issued that every cabin should be swept clean, and the women as quickly commenced the work. When they had finished, the cabins were all inspected, to see if they were in proper order. Next day the party approached the village. They were all frightfully painted, and each man had a bunch of white feathers on his head. They were marching in single file, the chief of the party leading the way, bearing in one hand a branch of cedar, laden with the scalps they had taken, and all chanting their war-song. As they entered the village, the chief led the way to the war-pole which stood in front of the council-house. In this house the council-fire was then burning. The waiter, or Etissu of the leader, then fixed two blocks of wood near the war-pole, and placed upon them a kind of ark, which was regarded by them as one of their most sacred things. The chief now ordered that all should sit down. He then inquired whether his cabin was prepared, and everything made ready, according to the custom of his fathers. They then rose up and commenced the war-whoop, as they marched round the war-pole. The ark was then taken and carried with great solemnity into the council-house, and here the whole party remained three days and nights, separate from the rest of the people. Their first business now was to wash themselves clean, and sprinkle themselves with a mixture of bitter herbs. While they were thus in the house, all their female relatives, after having bathed and dressed themselves in their finest clothes, placed themselves in two lines facing each other on each side of the door. Here they continued singing a slow monotonous song all day and night; the song was kept up steadily for one minute, with intervals of ten minutes of dead silence between. About once in three hours the chief would march out at the head of his warriors, raise the war-whoop, and pass around the war-pole, bearing his branch of cedar. This was all that was done for the whole three days and nights. At length the purification was ended, and upon each of their cabins was placed a twig of the cedar with a fragment of the scalps fastened to it, to satisfy the ghosts of their departed friends. All were now quiet as usual, except the leader of the party and his waiter, who kept up the purification three days and nights longer. When he had finished, the budget was hung up before his door for thirty or forty days, and from time to time Indians of the party would be seen singing and dancing before it. When Boone asked the meaning of all this strange ceremony, they answered him by a word which he says meant holy.

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