488 | The Petition of William Kellogg and Other Inhabitants of Nobletown

    To his Excellency Francis Bernard Esqr. Captain General and Commander in Chief in and over his Majestys Province of the Massachusetts Bay, Vice Admiral of the same, and to the Honble. his Majesty’s Council.

    The Petition of William Kellogg and Others Inhabitants of certain Lands called Nobletown Humbly Sheweth

    That your Petitioners being [in] possession of sd. Lands of Nobletown how and by what method has been heretofore laid before your Excellency, and is likewise set forth in a Letter of the 25th of Instant July directed to your Excellency by William Kellogg1 herewith delivered to your Excellency also sheweth, as likewise the violences and Outrages & Murthers perpetrated heretofore upon & among your Petitioners all have been and is in said Letter laid before your Excellency and this Honble. Council.

    Your Petitioners further sheweth that on Saturday the 26th of Instant July Hermonus Sciler Sheriff of the County of Albany and Robert Vn. Ransler of Claverack2 attended with about two hundred & fifty of Genl. Gage’s Light Infantry of Regular Troops; Armed with Guns Swords, Pistols, as also with one field piece and three Swivels in a Hostile manner came to said Nobletown unto the House of Andrew Stalker which House the said Sciler & others broke down, doing but little other damage excepting the braking his the sd. Andrew’s Gun; from sd. Andrew the sd. Schiler & others proceeded to the House of William Bever broke down his the sd. Beaver’s House, robbed him the sd. Bever of three Guns and sundry other valuable Goods and tools, from thence the sd. Schiler & others came to the House [of] Evert Conniekabacker where they pitched their Camp; from whence the sd. Schiler & others on Sabath day the 27th before day travelled three Miles to the House of Joseph Clark & brake it open, robbed him the said Clark of all his Books, arms, Cloath[s] & provision & even everything they could lay their hands upon; thence the sd. Schiler & others came to the House of Robert Meeker & brake down the House flung out and destroyed and carried away as Plunder every thing that was therein the House, as Cloathing, provision writings, Books &c; from whence they the sd. Schiler & others Returned to their said Camp; from whence in the afternoon of said Sabath day the sd. Schiler & others came to the House of Robert Noble which House and furniture they intirely demolished, set fire to the Barn Hovils & Barrack which were consumed to ashes, from thence the said Schiler & others proceeded to the House of sd. Clark demolished the House, thence to the sd. Meekers & carried off all they left in the Morning, then returning to their Camp they took as prisoner Thomas Millard, killing & destroying of Swine Fowls & as they returned, from whence on Monday 28th the sd. Schiler & others came to the House of Robert Warren and brake the House, plunder and rifled the House of every thing therein, killed four Sheep, three hogs one Calf, abused ye. Children &c thence proceeded to the House of William Kellogs your Petitioner who had made his escape some time before their arrival excepting a little Child and a man helping the Child to carry the Goods out of the House, upon the said Schilers approach the said Man fled who the said Schiler & others pursuing fired two Guns after him with intention to kill him supposing it to be your Petitioner, which Guns the Man escaped then the said Schiler & others return to sd. House greatly abused said Child3 robbed & plundered the House, killed two Hogs, ten Geese &c and other Fowls damaged the House in Measure &c thence the said Schiler and others came to the House of Ebenezer Smith of Egremont within the Province of the Massachusetts Bay, rifled and plundered the House of every thing valuable & lite to carry away, and then returned to their Camp; from whence the sd. Schiler on Tuesday has drew off and departed whether being frighted by the appearing of the Native Indians or what We your Petitioners cannot certainly tell, but leaving behind them threatnings that they would come again in a few days, and lay the whole Town in Rubbish, and plant three Forts there and tarry there to keep off the Inhabitants, this is the present situation of your Petitioners, such is the Confusion of the Inhabitants of the Town of Nobletown that scarcely two of sd. Inhabitants can be found on sd. premises of Nobletown, being driven as Sheep by Wolves in Companys over into the Neighbouring Towns to Egremont, Sheffield and Barrington with our Wives and Families with such precipitancy as to leave all our Substance of provision & family sustenance behind; and now we are in distressed Circumstances in other Towns having nothing to support us but the charity of the people with whom we reside and further our circumstances and distresses is aggravated by being driven off in such a season, it being the time of Wheat Harvest we are Obliged to leave our Fields not Harvested; the future dependance of our Families subsistance in time to come, and for Redress of all those Grievances and Oppressive Usages we have no where to look but to this Province of the Massachusetts Bay for our protector & supporter, as your Petitioners were encouraged to purchase and Settle these Lands of Nobletown under the protection and patronage of sd. Province of the Massachusetts Bay, So your Petitioners pray that your Excellency and this Honble. Council would devise some effectual method to put a stop to those oppressive Usages according to purport of said Letter herewith delivered to your Excellency or some other way as your Excellency in your Wisdom shall think fit. And your Petitioners has in duty bound shall ever pray

    Egremont July 30th. 1766

    Wm. Beever

    William Kellogg

    Ambrose Stalker

    Robert Meeker

    Robert Warren

    Robert Noble

    Ezekiel Clark

    Joseph Clark

    Moses Gilbert

    The foregoing is a true Copy from the original Petition

    Attest. Jno: Cotton D. Secry

    Ms, Copy      CO 5/892: ff 103-104.