The Chowanoc War from 1675 to 1677 was between the Albemarle County colony army (a part of the British Empire's Province of Carolina), and the Chowanoc Native American tribe. For two years, the Chowanoc fought with the forces of Peter Jenkins, commander of the colony's army. In the summer of 1677, the colony won, and the Chowanoc were forcibly moved to modern-day Gates County.

Chowanoc War
Part of American Indian Wars
Chowanoc people Albemarle County colony, Province of Carolina
Commanders and leaders
Peter Jenkins

Background edit

1715 map of Ablemarle County

In 1662, the first permanent settlers of the British Empire occupied the area north of Albemarle County, which became a part of the Province of Carolina. The Chowanoc Native Americans were living in northern Ablemarle County, on their ancestral home on the Meherrin River; in the county, the Chowanoc, Pasquotank, Poteskeet, and Yeopim had a combined population of 200. The population was strong enough to have turned the British settlers away, but the two groups made a peace treaty in 1663.[1] In 1670, Peter Jenkins was promoted lieutenant colonel of the Albemarle colony's army.[2] Around 1675, the other Native Americans living in the region convinced the Chowanoc to attack the British, as the British were attacking the Natives in the area. The British in Ablemarle County hadn't experienced violence since possibly 1666.[1]

Course of the war edit

In 1675, the Chowanoc attacked the British, disregarding the 1663 treaty.[1][3] The British forces were commanded by Peter Jenkins.[2] Both sides suffered heavy losses. The settlers lived in their "isolated homesteads" in constant fear of attack, which made settler travel in the area difficult. However, they had the strength of guns. The war dragged on for two years, when in 1677, a ship arrived carrying arms and ammunition for the British.[1] In the summer of 1677, the colony won,[1][2] which was a "crushing defeat" for the Chowanoc. The tribe was moved from the Meherrin River to a reservation on Bennett's Creek, in modern-day Gates County.[1][3][4]

References edit

  1. ^ a b c d e f Lee 1963, pp. 4, 14, 16.
  2. ^ a b c Powell 1988, p. 278.
  3. ^ a b Johnson 1972, p. 214.
  4. ^ Ward, Davis 2018, p. 273

Sources edit

  • Powell, William S. (1988). Dictionary of North Carolina Biography: H-K Volume 3, University of North Carolina Press. ISBN 9780807818060
  • Johnson, Frank Roy (1972). The Algonquians: Indians of that Part of the New World First Visited by the English, University of Wisconsin-Madison. ISBN 9780930230012
  • Lee, E. Lawrence (1963). Indian Wars in North Carolina, 1663–1763, North Carolina Office of Archives and History. ISBN 9780865260849
  • H. Trawick Ward, R. P. Stephen Davis Jr. (2018). Time Before History: The Archaeology of North Carolina, University of North Carolina Press. ISBN 9781469647777