Ohio History Journal

582 Ohio

582       Ohio. Arch. and Hist. Society Publications.


little and after a careful search they found some blood stains and with

a mighty war whoop dashed on his pursuit once more. By this time Cap-

tain Brady's strength was nearly spent and he ran with difficulty, but self

preservation was strong and he still pressed on through the tangled

forest hoping to reach a place of safety. About three or four miles

from Kent he hid himself beneath a great chestnut log in the quiet

waters of this pretty lake, and managed to get air through some water

reeds which grew in the lake.

Captain Brady had taken the utmost precaution to destroy all

evidences of his trail and had succeeded so well that when the Indians

came up and searched carefully for their victim they did not find the

slightest trace of him and so concluded that he had drowned himself in

the lake or that, being wounded, he had been drowned while trying to

escape. However they lingered around the lake for a time, and Brady,

in his safe retreat, heard their angry words and decision which he

understood from his knowledge of the Indian language. And as soon

as he thought it safe set out for the white settlement where he ar-

rived a little later.

His friends could scarcely credit his story, but found that he had

indeed had a race for life and rejoiced with him that it had not been

in vain.

Captain Brady renewed his warfare upon the Indians and at one

time captured several single handed and, marching by night, and hiding

by day, took them a distance of many miles.

The place where he made his bold leap has since been known as

"Brady's Leap," the hill down which he ran as "Brady's Hill," and

this lake in which he hid is still known as "Brady's Lake."





Judge Allen Smalley, of Upper Sandusky, in a letter made public

some years ago, located to within one acre, the exact spot upon which

Col. CRAWFORD was burned.

"On the 11th day of June, 1782, Col. William CRAWFORD was burned

at the stake by the Wyandot and Delaware Indians about half a mile

north-east of the site of CRAWFORDsville, in this county. No man knows

the exact spot where the execution occurred. The Indians, Dr. Knight

and Simon Girty, knew exactly where the burning took place, but as

to the particular point where the cruel deed was done the balance of

mankind must be content with hearsay tradition.  Colonel Butterfield

tried to locate the tragic spot in the light of first and second-hand

hearsay; and others seek now to walk to the exact spot in the light

given by Colonel Butterfield.


Editorialana.                        583


"Early in October, 1853, my father with his family moved onto the

old Myron Buell farm, at Crawfordsville, and our dwelling house was

within half a mile and in plain sight of the High Bank, on Tymochtee

creek, close to which, all agree, Colonel Crawford was burned. The

traditions from the whites and Indians agree that the execution took

place in this locality. The Indians were numerous and better acquainted

with the exact place and its environments than were the few whites.

"The first white settler within the present limits of Wyandot county

was Henry Lish, who settled near the mouth of Tymochtee creek, about

the year 1818. Settlers began to pour in rapidly in 1821, and never

stopped coming until the public land was all taken and the county was

completely settled. This settlement of the county commenced less than

forty years from the time of Colonel Crawford's cruel execution.

"The burning of Crawford was contrary to the customs of the

Wyandots, and it strained the friendly relations hitherto existing between

the Wyandots and the Delawares. Such an unusual event would naturally

make a deep impression upon the minds of the Indians of both tribes.

They all had an opportunity of knowing the exact spot where the

tragedy was consummated and all must concede that they did know.

Many of the actual participants in Crawford's execution, not only lived

here when the white settlers began to move into the country forty years

later, but they continued to live here until their final removal west of

the Mississippi in 1843.

"The old settlers were a hardy, long-lived people, and many of

them were active here until after the close of the Civil War. The

Wyandots had only been gone ten years when we moved into the

country. At that time the large timber on and in the neighborhood

of the High Bank had never been disturbed. The environments were

about the same as they had been for a hundred years. Certainly the

relative positions of the creek and the High Bank had not materially

changed since 1872. During the long years of my residence in sight

of the spot I always understood that the burning occurred under the

walnut trees in the bend of the creek, just across the stream from

High Bank. This general description brought the tragic spot within

the compass of less than an acre of land, and that was as close as we

ever cared about getting to the 'exact spot.'

"I never heard this location disputed until in 1876, when the Craw-

ford monument was, dedicated, and then, and at different times since,

old men living remote from the field and very seldom having seen it,

fortified with little morsels of hearsay, persist in putting a pin in the

'exact' spot where Colonel Crawford died at the stake.

"One hundred and twenty-two years ago Colonel Crawford died;

he was a noble, good man; a pioneer of our pioneers. His place of

sepulchre was the place of his execution, and, like one of the great

leaders of old, no man knows to this day the exact place of his burial.

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584       Ohio. Arch. and Hist. Society Publications.


The Tymochtee remains, the 'Bend' remains, the 'High Bank' remains,

and these monuments retain their relative positions substantially as they

have existed for the last 150 years.

"The actors in the tragedy have long since joined the silent

majority, but the early, undisputed tradition yet lives in the memory of

living witnesses, and under the walnut trees, in the bend of the creek,

just across from the High Bank is the 'exact spot' where the great

Colonel Crawford was burned at the stake."




A copy of the following article, by courtesy of a member of the

Oviatt family, recently fell into the hands of the Editor of the

QUARTERLY. It was published some years ago in one of the news-

papers of Eastern Ohio.   It gives a reliable account of an Indian

massacre and captivity typical of the times in the early settlements of

the New England and Pennsylvania colonies. This particular narrative

is interesting to Ohio readers for the reason that those spoken of as

massacred or carried into captivity were the progenitors of prominent

Ohio settlers, as appears in the article. It is perhaps permissible to

say, en passant, that the Elizabeth Carter and the Benjamin Oviatt,

of the account, were respectively the great-grandmother and the great-

grandfather of the Editor of the QUARTERLY, his grandfather being

Heman Oviatt who came to Ohio from      Goshen, Conn., in 1800, in

the party of Henry Hudson, when the latter founded the town given

his name. An account of the centennial of Hudson town appeared in

the publications of the Ohio State Archaeological and Historical So-

ciety, volume IX, pages 318-371-EDITOR.




[NOTE.-During the past two or three years I have been collect-

ing and arranging facts and data for a complete geneology of the

Oviatt family in America. In connection with this work, there has

come into my possession the following narrative, which is said to

have been originally published in the Litchfield (Conn.) Enquirer, about

1845 or 1846. The Benjamin Oviatt who married Elizabeth Carter,

was my great-grandfather; my father, Darius, being a son of Nathaniel

Oviatt, of Richfield, (Summit Co.,) Ohio. Samuel Oviatt, (born in

1741,) who it appears was an older brother of Benjamin, was the

progenitor of the Trumbull County Oviatts.      T. D. OVIATT.]

Warren, O., February 15th, 1889.

Almost incredible is the recital of the hardships and sufferings

from savage cruelty to which the early emigrants of our western set-