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Sunday, December 27, 2020

2020 - Conestoga Massacre Redux

This is a repost of my 2010 tribute to the Susquehannock/Conestoga Indians. 

 On this day in 1763...14 men, women & children were massacred by a group of frontier vigilantes in Lancaster PA.  

May they all rest in peace.

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 After reviewing last year's posts beginning in mid/late December, I decided that the post below summed up the Conestoga Massacre on December 27, 1763 the best.  There's also a two page account of the massacre I found recently which is also worth a few minutes of your time, along with a link below to the NA Nations website.  

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On the inside wall of the Green Room in The Fulton Opera House in Lancaster, PA, there is a plaque that was dedicated on June 22, 1997. 



"It was the worst of times, it was a turbulent time."
Paraphrase of Charles Dickens "A Tale of Two Cities"

"Into the Night" by Johnny Tiger Jr.

On Sunday morning, December 27th, 1763, the Paxton Boys, a self
styled vigilantic/militia group came to this location
and murdered the remaining 14 members of the commonly referred
to Conestoga Indians. 13 days prior to this they had murdered 6
other members of this small band.

Today we are honored to pay our last respects to those
unfortunate souls who had become refugees in their own land.
They were not guilty of any crime other than being at this place
during that turbulent time.


Sheehays (Shehaes)               Chee-Na-Wan (Jacob)
Washen (George)                   Quaa-Chow (Young Shehaes)
Tee-Kau-Ley (Harry)             Shaw-E-Kah (A Boy)
Ess-Canesh (Capt'n John)       Ex-Undas (A Boy Chrisly)
Teawonsha-I-Ong (Betty)        Saq-Uies-Hattah (Capt'n John's Son)
Kannenquas (Bill Sock)            Tong-Quas (Little Peter)
Kyungueagoah (Milly Sock)      Hy-Ye-Neas (A Boy)
Koweenasse (John Smith)         Ko-Qua-E-Un-Quas (Molly)
Tenseedaagua (Peggy Smith)      Karen-Do-Uah (A Little Girl)
Kaniinguas (Little John)              Cannukie Sung (A Little Girl Peggie)

Until we meet again.    From all of us.    June 22, 1997 AD


Here's a firsthand account from one of the many websites about the massacre:

A part of one from William Henry, of Lancaster, to a friend in Philadelphia, is given in " Rupp's History of Lancaster County." He says, "A regiment of Highlanders were at that time quartered at the barracks in the town, and yet these murderers were permitted to break open the doors of the city jail and commit the horrid deed. The first notice I had of the affair was that, while at my father's store near the court-house, I saw a number of people running down-street toward the jail, which enticed me and other lads to follow them. At about six or eight yards from the jail we met from twenty-five to thirty men, well mounted on horses, and with rifles, tomahawks, and scalping-knives, equipped for murder. I ran into the prison-yard, and there, oh, what a horrid sight presented itself to my view! Near the back door of the prison lay an old Indian and his squaw, particularly well known and esteemed by the people of the town on account of his placid and friendly conduct. His name was Will Soc. Around him and his squaw lay two children, about the age of three years, whose heads were split with the tomahawk and their scalps taken off. Toward the middle of the jail-yard, along the west side of the wall, lay a stout Indian, whom I particularly noticed to have been shot in his breast. His legs were chopped with the tomahawk, his hands cut off, and finally a rifle-ball discharged in his mouth, so that his head was blown to atoms, and the brains were splashed against and yet hanging to the wall for three or four feet around. This man's hands and feet had been chopped off with a tomahawk. In this manner lay the whole of them-men, women, and children-spread about the prison-yard, shot, scalped, hacked, and cut to pieces."


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