Sunday, August 9, 2015

The Indian Slave Trade, Part I

The Indian Slave Trade, Part I
In the introduction (1) the author speaks that “ . . . we have [histories of the Spanish, French and English settlements]. . . and tribal histories of Apalachee, Timucua, Choctaw and Catawba, but no one has recently attempted to tie the entire South together.” That is how I feel about the Catawba and Associated bands. No one has tried to tie them together. History only makes sense when all these independent bands together.
There is still one more aspect of the history of the Catawba and Associated Bands that we have not covered, that speaks to the reasoning behind the destruction of these Eastern Siouan peoples. That is slavery. Together, warfare, disease, and slavery were simply too much to overcome. Most of these bands disappeared. I cover “The Indian Slave Trade” by Alan Gallay here.
Since most of the Indian slave trade originated from South Carolina, most of the book tells of the history of South Carolina. South Carolina struggled to survive during its early years, from 1670 into the early part of the 18th century. The author states that “From first settlements, South Carolina elites ruthlessly pursues the exploitation of fellow humans in ways that differed from other mainland colonies.”(2)
The author states that “The trade in Indian slaves was the important factor affecting the South in the period 1670 [the founding of the South Carolina colony] to 1715.” (3) Speaking of the Indian slave trade, Gallay states “It existed on such a vast scale that more Indians were exported through Charleston that Africans were imported during this period.” (4)
The author divides the Piedmont Indians from the Catawba. But they are all one people. Gallay states 'The Piedmont Indians in the early Colonial period lived somewhat isolated from the burgeoning English colonies in spite of their proximity to them. . . . many of the Piedmont Indians joined together in the 18th century as the Catawba Confederacy.” These called “Piedmont Indians” lived in both Carolina's and parts of Virginia.(5). There was another group of Indians living on the coast of the Carolina's called “settlement Indians”. Per Gallay, they had largely disappeared by the second half of the 18th century.
One hint as to the demise of the Eastern Siouan peoples is mentioned by Gallay where he states; “large waves of pandemic disease of the seventeenth century occurred after the collapse of the chiefdoms encountered the Spanish in the sixteenth century..” (6) The eastern Siouan tribes, Catawba and Associated Bands, first came across the Spanish when De Soto (1539-1543) passed through. Later Pardo (1556) stayed for a while. These early contacts with the Spanish probably caused much death amongst them, as some towns De Soto mentions don't exist by the time of Pardo. Small Pox might be the culprit as it was later.
As to slavery, American Indians already raided one another for captives. So when Europeans came, they didn't introduce slavery to the American people, but as galley says, they “were responsible for stimulting a vast trade in humans as comodities.” (7)

The English and the Beginnings of the Indian Slave Trade
The Jamestown Colony was the first colony, founded in 1607. And was also the first colony to establish a plantation society based on slave labor. (8) Please remember I am covering mostly, how the slave trade affected the Catawba and associated Bands. Gallay calls these 'bands' by the name of “Piedmont Indians”.
By 1670 there were two migrations down south. Charles Town was founded, and a tribe of Indians who were called the 'Westo' arrived in the Savanna River. Gallay claims these Westo were the sape people called in Virginia, the 'Richahecrian'. He also suggests they descend deom the Erie, a people who fled the great lakes region of Lake Erie after attacks from the Iroqua. (9) Many Iroquoa, when discussing other tribes, end that word with the suffix 'roron'. If we take the word “Erie” and do away with the initial “E” we have r----roron. We are 'missing' the middle of the word, 'chahec, and 'reron' has some simiarities to 'rian'.The Spanish called them Chichimeco. Now “mico” is of Musceegoan origin. Chi chi has similarities to chi hac, at least the first syllable, anyhow. So the Virginians might have heard what the Iroquaians called them, and the Spanish heard what the Muscogeeans called them. But where then, does “Westo” come from? That is what the people of South Carolina called them. Perhaps that is of Catawba or Piedmont Indian origin. Perhaps the origins of these words are lost to history. I am simply trying to determine why they are known by three different names in three different placs.
Galley's research states that before leaving Western Virginia, these Westo established trade relations with Virginia. He then states,”From their new homes along the Savannah [River], they agressively attacked the Southern Indians to the East, Southeast, and South. Smith claims that the Virginians arming of the Westo gave them an undue advantage . . . The Virginians offered trade goods to the Westo in exchange for captives.” (10) I suspect some of those Indian slaves the Westo captured were eastern Siouan, a.k.a. “Piedmont Indians”] and are the reason the Saura/Cheraw and others fled to the east at this time. They lived directly along this migration route of the Westo. It was said Indian slaves made poor slaves, because it easy for them to escape, and return home. So they were sold to ships heading for the Caribbean, and African slaves were imported. Thus Indian slaves had no way to escape the small Caribbean Islands, and Africans had no where to run to to escape the American Southeast.
South Carolina was not a royal colony as was Virginia. It was ruled by eight 'Lord Proprietors' who feared the King might take over the colony at any time. (11)
The author talks mostly about Indian slaves in South Carolina..This began in December 1675. In December 1675, Carolina's Grand Council explained to the Propietors that they had approved the sale of Indians into slavery. They said, “The Sewee . . . and other neighboring Indians, had offered to sell their Indian prisoners to the colonists. These captives lately taken, are enemies to the said Indians, who are in Amity with the English.” It did not matter that these Indians were not at war with the English., only that they were taken in war and their captors chose to sell them.” (12) The Sewee were Eastern Siouan peoples.
The Propietors ruled over Carolina, and they left elite settlers in Carolina in charge. Chaos reigned, as the local elites often disregarded the will of the Propietors. South Carolina became a haven of pirates.
One tribe, the Kusoe, refused to ally themselves with the English. They were accused withstealing 'a great deal' of corn. In October 1671, the colony declared war on the Kussoe. They lived about 30 miles form Charlestown. The English had probably settled on lands that the Kussoe claimed as their hunting grounds. For three years the colonists had searched for the Kussoe and simply couldn't find them. They remained in the area, were accused of killing a few English settlers, but they simply could not be found. In 1674 the Stono Indians were said to be be tying to find other Indians toconfederate with them, to remove the English from the land. Gallay says the end of these troubles is not really in the records, but that the Indian settlements in the area were allowed to remain, but they were to pay one deer skin a year to the English, as tribute. Before long, these and other Indians were simply called “Settlement Indians”. It is obvious these two 'tribes' were simply small bands of either Catawba or Creek origin. There is no way to know which of these two they paid their allegiance, although the name “Kussoe” does sound as though it might have been 'Creek' in origin.(13)
Another group that caused trouble to early Carolina settlers ere the Westo. As already mentioned, they arrived along the Savanna River about the same time the South carolinia colony was established. These Westo had ties to the Virginia Colony. They were probably simply to claim a plot of land for themselves, as they'd been driven from their own homes further north. Traders in Virginia and Carolina worked independent of one another. Gallay states the Westo attacked the costal Indians in 1673 allied to the English, and the English had difficulty with them. Now the Westo were hoping to sell Indian captives to Virginia. Carolina had to ask for Indian allies. Interestingly, Gallay says; “Carolina turned to the Esaw, a Piedmont people who, according to the Carolina Grand Council, 'are well accounted with the Westo habitiation, and have promised all the help they can afford.'” (14)
Now the 'Esaw' are a major band of the Catawba. One difficulty is studying the eastern Siouan groups in that different people spelled their names differently. The “Esaw' are the same people called 'Yesah' by others. There is an early map showing the Yesah were near the Saponi in Western Virginia. I have suggested that one reason the Saura moved east was slave raiding visits from the westo. Well, both the Saponi and Yesaw/Esaw had also lived in that region. The Saponi migrarted east and the Yesah/Esaw moved to the vicinity of the Catawba, the largest band of the Southeastern Siouan peoples. There might be a reason – revenge, that they volunteered to help fight the Westo. Gallay states “. . . they not only accepted Esaw assistance, but let the Esaw determine the best way to subdue the Westo. Gallay ays the war with the Westo endd in December 1674. The Westo town was on the western shore of the Savannah River, The Westo made it clear they wanted a cessation of hostility and trade relations with South Carolina. A prominent Carolinian, Dr. Henry Woodward, visited the Westo town. Gallay says, “Woodward was impressed to find the Westo well supplied with arms, ammunition, trading cloth, and other English goods they had obtained from the Northwards [Virginia], for which they exchanged dresses deerskins and young Indian slaves.” Apparently after this meeting, the Westo started trading with South Carolina, as it was much closer that Virginia.
Another group that moved to the Savannah River about this time was the Savannah, better known as 'Shawnee. They were also fleeing from stronger tribes to the north. These two refugee tribes formed a n uneasy alliance, as both were weak and needed each other. In fact the Savannah (known today as Shawnee) informed the Westo of an upcoming attack from the Cherokee, Cuseeta (a band of the Creek), and Chickasaw. From further west. Gallay does not mention what became of this attack, but it is the first mention of the Chickasaw in South Carolina. Eventually a band of the Chickasaw would move to the Savannah River.
Continuing with the story of the Westo, Gallay states, “Woodward's visit to the Westo was a success, and it resulted in a profitable trade in Indian slaves that lasted from 1675-1680 The Westo preyed on Spanish allied Indians in Guale and Mocama. They also continued to attack other groups, including settlement Indians.” (15) However the Westo refused to stop their attacks on the Coastal Indians. Since these were close neighbors of the Carolinian's, this presented them a delimma. They feared a reprisal from the coastal tribes (these were of course, were allies of the Catawba and the bands associated with them. The Westo made strong enemies of all their neighboring tribes. Many of these tribes were peple the carolinians wanted to make trade partners out of, so this they learned an alliance with the Westo had its limits. The Westo became expendable, as far as the Carolinians wee concerned.
In 1679, the Carolinian's went to war with the Westo. The Lord Proprietors demanded peace, not realizing the Carolinian's preferred war, as that is how they made profits in Indian slaves They wanted the Indians at war with one another, as which ever side won, would bring captives to the Charles Town markets and sell them. Quoting Gallay, “Only through warfare could Carolinian's obtain the slaves they desired to exchange for supplies to build their plantations. Peaceful coexistence with Indians might be fine for subsistence farmers . . . but not for Carolinian's hoping to amass capitol quickly.” (16) The colonists usually simply disregarded the Lord Proprietors wishes and did what they wanted. The colonist's were uninterested in making Indians dependent on trade [at this time]; the simply wanted to make money through the Indian' slave trade. Gallay is vague as to the exact date, but states the Westo became a “ruined” people. Gallay talks about the Lord Proprietors of South Carolina, in the early 1680s, asking the Governor why “when it was first founded and weak . . . the colony had no wars and then had warred with the Westo 'while they were in treaty with that government . . . and then put to death incold blood and the rest driven from the country?” (17)
With the Westo wasted, the South Carolinian government invited the Savannah to take their place along the Savannah River, which was named after them. The Waniah who livd upn the Winyah River. There was a claim mae that the Waniah 'had cut off a boat of runaways.' The Indian traders convinced the Savannah to go to war with the Waniah. Gallay states “Savannah's not affording the profitable trade to the Indian dealers that was expected in beavers . . . the carolinians turned them to enslaving Indians.” . . . The Savannah . . . captured the Waniah and sold them to an Indian trader who shipped them to Antigua.” Gallay adds that; “ The [Lord] Proprioters received testimony that a false alarm was contrived by the dealers in Indians that they might thereby have an opportunity of showing themselves at the Savanna Towne with foces and thereby frighten those people . . . (also 17).
“The [Lord] Proprietors also received word that the surviving Westo had wanted peace with Carolina and wished the Savannah to mediate, 'but their messengers were taken and sent away to be sold.' The same fate befell the messengers of the Wineah. Sarcastically, the [Lord] Proprietors rued, 'but if there be peace with the Westo and Waniah, where shall the Savannah's get Indians to sell the dealers in Indians?” The Proprietors, angry at the colonists, said, “You have repaid their kindness by setting them 'to do all these horid wicked things, to get slaves to sell the dealers in Indians [and then] call it humanity to buy them, and thereby keep them from being murdered.” (18)
Gallay does not state the years the Westo were 'ruined' or the Waniah enslaved. But he stars next with the year 1680. (p 62) In 1680, the Lord Proprietor's limited enslavement of American indians to those living further than 200 miles from Charles Towne. They left the door open, though, to a loophole, by adding that this applied only to friendly Indians. This 'loophole' would later have a great effect during the Tuscarora and Yamassee Wars. In laws passed 2 years later, 1682, it became illegal to ship Indians away from Carolina, and it extended the range for catching Indian slaves from 200 to 400 miles. Away from Charleston. (19)
The Lord Proprietors of the colony of South Carolina were in England, and the leaders in South Carolina's rarely listened to them.Galley states that “. . . officials in Europe turned their heads while colonists and local officials engaged in illegal trade, enslavement of free peoples, and instigating and conducting unapproved wars. . . . Laws were obeyed when convenient.” A newer law passed in 1683 said only Indians captured 'in a just and necessary war' could be transported outside of the colony.. Gallay wonders why the Lord Proprietors didn't simply bad the Indian slave trade. But the carolina traders argued that “Indians had to be sold into slavery to satisfy their Indian captors and to prevent them from being slaughtered.” (20)
In defense of the Carolinian's, Gallay says, “The Carolinian's were neither less than no more moral in their disregarding their own ethical values than English colonists living elsewhere. But they had the opportunity to enslave Indians on a scale not available elsewhere. . . . Nor can we ascribe religion as a differentiation in whether colonists would enslave, for High Anglicans as well as Puritans and other dissenters equally participated in the Indian slave trade.” One more interesting comment on this page concerns the French. Gallay said, speaking of French colonies, says, “ . . .the French even looked into incorporation of Indians in colonial society through intermarriage, as long as the Indians converted beforehand.” (21) I mention this because the French word “Melangeon” means 'we mix', Another Frenchman who lived in Virginia, who was a Huguenot, said virtually the same thing. Tere was a group of mixed race people who came to be known as “Melungeons”.
Gallay continues with the these that the local officials in South Carolina pretty much ignored the orders given by their Lord Proprietors in London, when ever they wanted to do so.He comments; “In November 1683, two of the [Lord] Proprietors' appointed officials, Maurice Matthews and James Moore,'most contemptuously disobeyed our orders about sending away of Indans in order to the getting of slaves and were contriving new wars for that purpose.” The Proprietors claimed that omly Indians taken in a 'just and necessary war' were to be enslaved and transported out f the colony. Even that restriction was later dropped. “We did not thereby mean that the parliament should license the transporting of Indians bought of other Indians by way of trade, nor are you to suffer it, for that would but occasion the dealers in Indians to contrive those poor people into wars upon one another that they might have slaves to buy. In 1685 the proprietors strictly warned . . . against the enslaving of Indians except that they were captured in a war that Carolina itself was involved in.” However “The Indian dealers were Hell-bent on the exploitation of human resources, African and Amerindian, to make their wealth.” The next Indian group recruited to capture other Indians for the slave trade we hear of is the Yamasee. (22)
Thus far we can imply English traders from Virginia traded weapons to the Westo. As they migrated from Virginia to Georgia along the Savannah River, the Westo created havoc upon the local Indians, who at that time would have been the Manahaoc, Monacan, Saponi, Yesah/Esaw, Saura and others. These were but bands of the greater Eastern Siouan peoples. The Westo made war with all of their neighbors, making powerful enemies. When they enslaved the 'Settlement Indians' living near Charleston, they made an enemy of the South Carolinians, for the colony depended upon these Indians for the ir first line of defense. A few years later the Savanna, known today as the Shawnee, followed the same path. Both groups settled upon the Savannah River.. Later the Esaw helped destroy the Westo, their survivors were turned into slaves. Another group, the Waniah, were rounded up and enslaved. All these Indians were exported out of South Carolina to the islands of the Caribbean. Negro slves wee brought to caroina in their place. Remnant Indian groups settled near Charleston and became known as 'Settlement Indians'. The tribal affiliations of these 'settlement Indians' was lost over time. Perhaps they were freed slaves. Perhaps some were of mixed race. Another new group of Indians is about to migrate up from Florida to the Savannah River to live near where the former Westo had been. They were known as the Yamassee. They held old grudges against the remaining Spanish Indians in Florida.This is the state of South Carolina a decade before the end of the 17th century.

The Next Series of Events Which Lead to Gather More Indian Slaves
Many Indians preferred to trade with the English over both the French and Spanish. The English offered many more goods; guns, metal tools, clothing, cooking utensils, liquor. They traded animal pelts and slaves, that the English desired. This section of Gallay's book covers the years 1684-1701. Gallay says “Large numbers of Yamassee . . . settled on the North side of the Savannah River, to the East of the Savannah Indians.” Gallay adds, “Other smaller groups of Indians soon followed, Apalachicola, Chickasaw, and Yuchi all planted towns on the Savannah.. The Carolina colonists welcomed the Indians as allies and trading partners.” (23)
Per Gallay, “traders settled in Savannah Town, at a spot formerly occupied by the Westo on the north bank of the river across from modern day Augusta, Georgia. The trading post led hundreds of Indians to settle in the area.” (24) These Indians were quick to establish trading relations with the Carolina settlers. They raided Spanish Indian settlements, who were part of the Spanish Missoin system, and sold them in Carolina. A Scottish settlement arose. And many of the Indians taded with them instead of the Charleston colony. The Yamassee became the main group of Indians upon the Savannah River.
To learn about the Indian slave trade, let me quote Gallay again. Speaking of the Lord Proprietors, we have; “They ceaselessly reminded apointees of the inhumanity of fomenting wars wars to obtain slaves . . .” (25). Ina word, South Carolina appointees were trying to get the Indians, especially on the Savannah River, to go on slave raiding raids, especially against the Florida Indians, who were part of the Spanish Mission System. This was the state of affairs in the 1790s.
Beside the Savannah River Indians, Gallay mentions the Iroquois, saying they were allies of the few remaining Westo, and that they made long trips to the South to go to war with the Southern Indians. Gayllay says, “Escaped slaves who lived outside government authority, knows as 'maroons', had the potential to incite free Indians and enslaved Indians and Africans to destroy the colony.” (26). In 1693, Gallay says the Indian population still outnumbered the Whites in Carolina. The African slave population was still growing. The colony was still not feeling secure.
The settlers started to worry about the Settlement Indians. Settlers began to think it was time for the settlement Indians to 'pull their own weight'. The settlement Indians were asked to bring in so many pelts for use or sale by the settlers. “Punishment for those who refused to labor voluntarily was a severe whipping on the bare back of the town's inhabitants. 'Nations' that refused. Compliance would be placed 'out of protection of the government;' which invariably meant they would be subject to enslavement.” (27) Many of thee settlement Indians would have been Eastern Siouan, or relations of the Catawba.
This brings us up to about 1698, and the Indian slave trade continued to about 1715-1720. The Indians are still strong enough to make Carolina afraid, but by the end of this era, that would no longer be the case. The Westo, Waneah, were no longer considered tribes, but rather just a handful of refugees, with others either killed or enslaved and shipped to the Caribbean. Some of the Florida Indians were disappearing as the slave trade had been rounding them up. The Catawba and their many bands, as well as the Tuscarora, were still strong players in the Carolina's, and a third group had migrated to the Savannah River near Augusta, lured by the Indian slave trade.

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