Long Run Massacre and Floyd's Defeat

Kentuckiana Genealogy: Interesting Stories: Long Run Massacre and Floyd's Defeat
By Board Administration (Admin) on Wednesday, June 28, 2000 - 03:41 pm:

Following is an account of the Long Run Massacre and Floyd's Defeat as
told by G. T. Wilcox, Squire Boone's Grandson in a letter to Hon.Thos. W. Bullitt.

Eden postoffice (Jefferson County), Ky., July 23, 1880. Mr. Thos. W. Bullitt

Dear Sir:

Having made your acquaintance at the unveiling of the monument
erected to the memory of the dead of G. John Floyd's defeat on Floyd's
Fork, now in Jefferson County, you requested me to give you a narrative
of what I knew of the massacre and Floyd's defeat. I am a representative
of Squire Boone, being his grandson, and what I know I learned from
Isaiah Boone, my uncle, a son of Squire Boone. He was at Floyd's defeat.
He said that his father had built a station on Clear Creek, two miles
east of where Shelbyville now stands, and that his father, with several
families, left Boonesborough in 1779, settled in this, then called
Boone's station. There was a station on Beargrass, three miles east of
Louisville, Called Beargrass (or Floyd's Station), and one eight miles
from Louisville, called Lynn's Station. Lynn's Station was on the place
afterward owned by Col. R. C. Anderson. Boone's Station at that time was
the only station between Harrod's and Lynn's Station. Squire Boone's
station was about twenty-two miles east of Lynn's Station. Bland Ballard
and Samuel Wells at that time lived in Lynn's Station, while Gen. Floyd
lived in Beargrass Station.

There were two couples to be married in Lynn's Station. Bland
Ballard and a man named Carris went from Lynn's Station to Brashear's
Station, near the mouth of Floyd's Fork, now Bullitt County, after a
Baptist minister, John Whitaker, to marry them. This was to be the first
legal marriage in this part of the country. In going over, Ballard
discovered an Indian trail and was satisfied there was a large body of
them. He retraced his steps to Lynn's Station, sent word to Beargrass
Station, and then went to Boone's Station that night. They held a
meeting and agreed to leave the station and go to Lynn's Station. There
were a large number of families in Boone's Station at this time, viz:
the Hintons, Harrises, Hughses, Hansboro, Bryans, Van Cleves and many
others. They could not all get ready to move the next day, but some were
determined to go. Squire Boone was not ready and could not prevail on
them to wait another day. So Major Ballard conducted this party, leaving
Squire Boone and a few families in the station to come the next day.
When Ballard's party reached Long Run he was attacked in the rear. He
went back to protect the rear. He drove the Indians back and held them
in check as long as he could. In going back he saw on the ground a man
and his wife, by the name of Cline. He told Cline to put his wife on the
horse and hurry on. They were in the bed of Long Run. Ballard returned
in a short time, to find Cline and his wife still on the ground. He put
her on his horse and gave the horse a tap with his wiping-stick and as
he did so an Indian pulled a sack from her horse. Ballard shot the
Indian and hurried to the front.

Here he found a great many killed and the people scattered,
leaving their cattle and losing their baggage and many horses. Some
reached Lynn's Station that night, and a few Boone's. Boone remained in
his station for several days after that before he and his party went
down to Lynn's Station. I'll give the name of a few of those that were
killed on Long Run: Two Misses Hansboros, sisters of Joel Hansboro; a
Mr. McCarby, a brother of Mrs. Richard Chenoweth, and a Mrs. Van Cleve,
an aunt of my mother's. The next day General (then Colonel) Floyd,
Colonel (then Captain) Wells, and Bland Ballard (afterward Major
Ballard) and thirty-four others from Lynn and Beargrass Stations, went
up to bury the dead. When they reached Floyd's Fork, Ballard said to
them: 'You send a few men and ascertain where the Indians are.' He,
however, was overruled and on they went. At the head of the ravine they
were surrounded and sixteen of their men were shot down at the first
fire. Fourteen of these were buried in one sink. They began to retreat.
Isaiah Boone said that when he reached the Fork he discovered an Indian
following him. He raised his gun. The Indian stepped behind a tree. Just
at this time General Floyd and Colonel Wells came in sight, Floyd on
foot and Wells on horseback. Wells said to Floyd: 'Take my horse.'
Floyd, being large and fleshy, was much exhausted.

They took to the bushes and reached the place selected, should
they be defeated. It was near where Thos. Elder's new house now stands,
on the Shelby Pike, about three miles above Middletown. For some time
prior to this, General Floyd and Wells were not friendly. Isaiah Boone
said: 'General, that brought you to your milk.' The Gerneral's reply
was: 'You are a noble boy; we were in a tight place.' This boy was then
but fourteen years of age. He was at that time visiting Lynn's Station.
The occurrence took place in September, 1781. Squire Boone's wife's
maiden name was Jane Van Cleve. Enoch Boone, their youngest son, was
born in Boonesborough, October 16, 1777, being the first male white
child born in Kentucky. He died in Meade County, Kentucky, 1861.
Squire Boone died in 1815, and was by his request, buried in a cave in
Harrison County, Indiana. Sarah Boone, my mother, was the only daughter
of Squire Boone. She was married to John Wilcox, my father, in 1791,
and he settled on and improved land, surveyed and patented in the name
of Sarah Boone by her father, four miles north of Shelbyville. Dear
Sir, pardon me for departing from the subject of my narrative. I am
making it too long.

Yours truly,
G. T. Wilcox

P. S.---The information here given you was derived from
conversations with Isaiah Boone; confirmed by conversations with my
mother, who was in the fort with her father at the time of the massacre;
also with Enoch Boone; also with my grandmother, Jane Boone, wife of
Squire Boone, who lived at my father's house and died there in 1820.
For further information on this interesting topic I would refer
you to John Williamson, now living at Eden Station, in this county, and
in the eighty-fifth year of his age. Squire was the Christian name, not
the title, of Squire Boone. He was the youngest brother of Daniel

G. T. Wilcox

Submitted by Elizabeth Smith

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