Tampa Chapter

Sons of the American Revolution

October 2014

 

Contents

          Meeting announcement

          Sept. agenda items

          Revolution education note

          Program Schedule

          Misc. reminders and information

 

The October meeting of the Tampa Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution, will be on Oct. 18 at the Piccadilly Cafeteria, located at 11810 Dale Mabry Highway North, Tampa, Florida (813-963-1660).  

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Revolution Note:

 

Battle of Point Pleasant October 10, 1774

 

In 1768, the Iroquois natives and the British signed the Treaty of Fort Stanwix. In this agreement, the Iroquois gave all of their lands east and south of the Ohio River to the British. While the Iroquois agreed to give up this land, most Ohio Native Americans did not, including the Delaware natives, the Seneca-Cayuga natives, and the Shawnee natives.   Following the treaty many Americans moved into the area (basically modern West Virginia) and also into areas north of the Ohio River and south west into Kentucky.  Those Native Americans who had not agreed to the treaty retaliated by attacking these settlers.  Pennsylvania militia from Ft. Pitt set out to attack the natives and burned several villages.  Lord Dunmore, Governor of Virginia immediately ordered Va. Militia into the area.  He did not want Pennsylvanians encroaching on Virginia territory and therefore decided to plant Virginia militia in the area to both protect the settlers and to solidify Virginia’s claim to the area.  Meanwhile the Shawnee continued to raid the area.  The Shawnee chief Conrstalk was originally in favor of reconciliation but due to the raiding by both sides and the burning of villages, cabins and the associated killing and kidnapping of non-combatants, decided to attack the 1000 man Virginia militia force as it approached the Ohio River.  He assembled a force of 1000 warriors and on Oct. 10, attacked the Virginians, commanded by Col. Andrew Lewis.  Lewis’s men were camped on a bluff overlooking the Ohio River.  It seems apparent that the goal of the Shawnee was to trap the Virginians on the bluff.  The battle lasted most of the day and by the end of the battle the fighting was hand to hand.  During the last part of the battle Col. Lewis sent Capt. George Matthews with a force to get on to the flank of the Shawnee.  Matthews was successful and this maneuver took pressure off the main force.  By the end of day, the Shawnee, faced with a force on their flank as well as the unbreakable line of the Virginians, retreated across the Ohio River.  A few days later Lord Dunmore showed up with a force of British regulars. A new treaty was signed and what became known as Lord Dunmore’s war was over. By the time the Virginia militia returned home the skirmishes at Lexington and Concord had taken place.  Lord Dunmore led the British effort in Virginia early in the war and actively sought the assistance of the same Native Americans his troops had fought at Point Pleasant.

It has been argued by some that the Battle of Point Pleasant should be looked at as the opening battle of the American War for Independence. The reasoning behind this is as follows.  Some Virginians came to believe that Lord Dunmore was secretly in touch with the Shawnee and that he had intentionally placed the militia on the bluff over the Ohio hoping they would be defeated (or at least isolated for a time) and thus be unable to participate in the rebellion that was afoot. It is my opinion this gives Lord Dunmore way too much credit for being able to see into the future and too much credit for long range planning (the man was not a genius to put it mildly).  Plus, his concern about both Shawnee and Pennsylvanian encroachment into Virginia territory makes perfect sense. Also, it should be noted that in the debates in the Virginia House of Burgesses, once hostilities between the Americans and British had begun, members from the northwestern areas of Virginia steadfastly defended Lord Dunmore for his actions in defending them from the Shawnee raids.

 

(ed. Note.  If memory serves there was a good article about Point Pleasant in the National magazine a year or so back that made the argument it was the first battle of the War for Independence and, again, if memory serves, the SAR does accept an ancestor who fought at Point Pleasant as having served in the American Army during the war and acceptable for membership.)

 

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PROGRAM SCHEDULE

Below is the tentative program schedule for the remainder of 2014.

 

2014

October – Panama Canal

November - CAR Joint Meeting plus Law Enforcement and Fire Fighter recognition

December - Officer Installation

 

Tentative 2015

Feb., April and May are reasonably nailed down but Jan. and March are still open.

Feel free to send along any suggestions to VP Charles Krug

Misc. Reminders and notes:

 

Chapter Website— Remember you can find information about the chapter and programs on the chapter website.  http://www.patriot-web.com/

 

One of the duties of the Chapter Chaplain is to send cards to our members that are sick. If you know of anyone that I need to send a card to, please mention it at our next meeting. Another duty is to send a sympathy card to the family of a member who has passed away.

Jack C. Bolen           

Chaplain