|Part of American Revolutionary War|
|Northampton County volunteer militia|
|Commanders and leaders|
|Unknown, possibly Roland Montour||Lieutenant John Fish, Lieutenant John Moyer|
|Unknown, at least 30||41 men|
|Casualties and losses|
|Unknown|| At least 10 dead|
Unknown number wounded
The Sugarloaf massacre was a skirmish that occurred on September 11, 1780, in Pennsylvania when a number of Natives and a handful of loyalists attacked a small detachment of militia from Northampton County.According to pension files and witness depositions, the militia detachment was led by Lieutenants John Moyer and John Fish of Captain Johannes Van Etten's company of volunteers.
Loyalists were American colonists who stayed loyal to the British Crown during the American Revolutionary War, often called Tories, Royalists, or King's Men at the time. They were opposed by the "Patriots", who supported the revolution, and called them "persons inimical to the liberties of America". Prominent Loyalists repeatedly assured the British government that many thousands of them would spring to arms and fight for the crown. The British government acted in expectation of that, especially in the southern campaigns in 1780-81. In practice, the number of Loyalists in military service was far lower than expected since Britain could not effectively protect them except in those areas where Britain had military control. The British were often suspicious of them, not knowing whom they could fully trust in such a conflicted situation; they were often looked down upon. Patriots watched suspected Loyalists very closely and would not tolerate any organized Loyalist opposition. Many outspoken or militarily active Loyalists were forced to flee, especially to their stronghold of New York City. William Franklin, the royal governor of New Jersey and son of Patriot leader Benjamin Franklin, became the leader of the Loyalists after his release from a Patriot prison in 1778. He worked to build Loyalist military units to fight in the war, but the number of volunteers was much fewer than London expected.
Northampton County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 297,735. Its county seat is Easton. The county was formed in 1752 from parts of Bucks County. Its namesake was Northamptonshire and the county seat of Easton is named for the country house Easton Neston.
Previous violence between the Iroquois and settlers was one of the contributing factors to the events of the Sugarloaf Massacre. In 1780, there were a large number of attacks by Natives in the vicinity where the massacre took place, including an attempted attack on Moses Van Campen.On June 15, 1780, a group of militia in Northampton were commissioned to serve for seven months, led by Captain Johannes Van Etten.
Major Moses Van Campen (1757–1849) was a soldier during the American Revolutionary War. He was a prominent figure in Pennsylvania and parts of New York. His primary involvement in the Revolutionary War was in fighting against hostile Native American tribes. He began work as a soldier in 1775 and retired from military service in 1783. Van Campen was familiar with Native American methods of warfare. He also participated in the Sullivan Expedition in 1779.
Northampton is a borough in Northampton County, Pennsylvania, in the United States. The borough is located in the Lehigh Valley region of eastern Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, Northampton's population was 9,926.
The communities of Bloomsburg and Catawissa were home to large numbers of Loyalists who aided the British during the American Revolutionary War, [ dubious ] and then to Nesquehoning Creek, where they camped. The next day, they traveled over Broad Mountain and through a stretch of wilderness known as the "Haselschwamp," which is now Hazleton. They passed through the swamp on September 10.and a detachment of 41 of Van Etten's men headed to Northumberland to investigate these settlements in 1780. They were placed under the command of Lieutenants Moyer and Fish, and they left Northampton County in the beginning of September 1780 from Fort Allen and headed into Sugarloaf Valley to search for Loyalist sympathizers and spies. Upon leaving the fort, Klader's men crossed the Lehigh River and traveled to the community of Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania
Bloomsburg is a town in Columbia County, Pennsylvania, United States, located 40 miles (64 km) southwest of Wilkes-Barre along the Susquehanna River. It is the county seat of Columbia County and the only incorporated town in Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, Bloomsburg had a population of 14,855, with an estimated population of 14,519 in 2013.
Catawissa is a borough in Columbia County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 1,552 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Bloomsburg–Berwick Metropolitan Statistical Area.
The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), also known as the American War of Independence, was an 18th-century war between Great Britain and its Thirteen Colonies which declared independence as the United States of America.
On September 6, approximately 250 to 300 Native and British soldiers arrived at Fort Rice, near Chillisquaque Creek in Lewis Township, Northumberland County. They attacked the fort and the surrounding residences, but Colonel Hunter sent some troops from Fort Jenkins to their aid. Approximately 200 men arrived at Fort Rice, and the British and Natives dispersed. Upon retreating, these people went over Knob Mountain and a group of 30 to 40 of them went down the stream known as Cabin Run to Fort Jenkins, which they burned down, along with numerous buildings in the fort's vicinity. They then crossed the Susquehanna River and went to Sugarloaf Valley in southwestern Luzerne County.
Chillisquaque Creek is a tributary of the West Branch Susquehanna River in Montour County and Northumberland County, in Pennsylvania, in the United States. It is approximately 20.2 miles (32.5 km) long and flows through Derry Township, Washingtonville, and Liberty Township in Montour County and East Chillisquaque Township and West Chillisquaque Township in Northumberland County. The watershed of the creek has an area of 112 square miles (290 km2). Agricultural impacts have caused most of the streams in the watershed of the creek to be impaired. Causes of impairment include sedimentation/siltation and habitat alteration. The average annual discharge of the creek between 1980 and 2014 ranged from 48.2 to 146.0 cubic feet per second. Its watershed mainly consists of rolling agricultural land. The creek's channel flows through rock formations consisting of sandstone and shale. It is a warmwater stream.
Lewis Township is a township in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population at the 2010 Census was 1,915, up from 1,862 at the 2000 census.
The Susquehanna River is a major river located in the northeastern and mid-Atlantic United States. At 444 miles (715 km) long, it is the longest river on the East Coast of the United States that drains into the Atlantic Ocean. With its watershed, it is the 16th-largest river in the United States, and the longest river in the early 21st-century continental United States without commercial boat traffic.
The men of the volunteer detachment had just sat down to eat dinner on September 11, 1780, according to survivor Peter Crum, when the Loyalists and Natives started firing muskets at them. Ten militiamen were killed, according to Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Balliet, who had gone with a small force of 150 militia to bury the dead. He wrote in his report:
"On the first notice of this unfortuned event the officers of the militia have Exerted themselves to get Volunteers out of their Respective Divissions to go up & Burry the Dead, their Labour Proved not in Vain we collected about 150 men & officers Included from the Colonels Kern, Giger & my own Battalions who would undergo the fatique & Danger to go their & pay that Respect to their slautered Brethren, Due to men who fell in support of the freedom of their Country. On the 15th we took up our line of march (want of amunation prevented us from going Sooner) on the 17th we arrived at the place of action, where we found Ten of our Soldiers Dead, Scalped, Striped Naked, & in a most cruel & Barborous manner Tomehawked, their throads Cut, &c. &c. whom we Buried & Returned without even seeing any of these Black alies, & Bloody executors of British Tirany."
Balliet's burial detail apparently skirmished with some scouts from the Loyalist and Native forces while burying the dead, as Balliet went on to report:
"We also have great Reason to beleve that several of the Indians have been killed by our men, in Particular one by Col. Kern & an other by Capt. Moyer both of whome went Volunteers with this partie."
Most of the militiamen escaped, with Lieutenant John Moyer, Ensign Scoby, and an unnamed private taken prisoner. Moyer managed to escape, but the other two men were taken to Niagara. Moyer traveled to Fort Wyoming, which he reached on September 14.
After the skirmish, the Loyalist and Native war party searched the surrounding area for several hours. The next day, they took their prisoners down Nescopeck Creek and towards the Susquehanna River before turning towards Berwick and Catawissa, Pennsylvania.The soldiers who escaped the massacre spread the news as far as the Delaware River.
In 1933, the Pennsylvania Historical Commission, the Wyoming Historical and Genealogical Society, and the Sugarloaf Commemorative Committee built a memorial near the location of the massacre. In 1947, a historical marker was installed on Pennsylvania Route 93, near Conyngham.
The number of militiamen killed in action at the skirmish is difficult to confirm. The earliest and best source, Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Balliet, reported that ten men were buried. Samuel Rea, the County Lieutenant of Northampton County, indicated that Balliet's numbers were probably the most accurate:
"Col. Baliort [Balliet] informs me that he had Given Council a relation of the killed and wounded he had found Burned near Neskipeki as he was at the place of action his Accts must be as near the truth as any I could procure..."
Lieutenant Moyer, upon his return, said he had seen thirteen scalps on the belts of his captors, but it is hard to believe that they let him count the scalps while he was detained. Captain Van Etten did take a return at the end of the Volunteer's tour of duty, in January, 1781. He indicates that 14 men were killed on September 11, 1780.But at least three of these men—George Schellhammer, Peter Crum, and Baltzar Snyder—show up on a few months later, and again in returns the following year, as substitutes (volunteers, not drafted) in Captain William Moyer's (father of Lieutenant John Moyer) company of militia and again a year later, in 1783. Peter Crum lived long enough to file a pension in 1833. It is likely that Van Etten did not know who had been killed (his company was spread over two dozen miles, east to west, along frontier forts in Northampton County) or these men had deserted after the massacre and returned to their farms.
The number commonly believed, 15, is not sustainable according to the evidence. Thus the plaque at the site listing that many names is inaccurate.[ citation needed ]
No historical evidence exists which places a man named Daniel Klader at the scene. No correspondence or militia returns mention his name. No birth record, marriage record, or death record for him exists. Not a single survivor mentions his name or his death in their depositions and not a single surviving pension file from any of the Volunteers indicate that they served under a Daniel Klader of any kind.
The earliest mention of a Daniel Klader is in the late 19th Century, almost one-hundred years after the events took place. The name is given as an alternative to John Moyer having head the company, and no source is cited or evidence given for this name being included. The best possible explanation seems to be a misidentification; some of the soldiers who served in Van Etten's company of volunteers later served a tour under Captain Jacob Klader (who was not a member of Van Etten's company).Thus it is likely that someone conflated their service under Van Etten with Jacob Klader, as it common in pension files from the 1830s onward. However, given the lack of any available evidence to support the claim that a Daniel Klader was at the massacre, or that he led the company, it has been proposed that no such man was there and might have been wholly invented by the individual who wrote the article in the 19th Century.
The Black Hawk War was a brief conflict between the United States and Native Americans led by Black Hawk, a Sauk leader. The war erupted soon after Black Hawk and a group of Sauks, Meskwakis, and Kickapoos, known as the "British Band", crossed the Mississippi River, into the U.S. state of Illinois, from Iowa Indian Territory in April 1832. Black Hawk's motives were ambiguous, but he was apparently hoping to avoid bloodshed while resettling on tribal land that had been ceded to the United States in the disputed 1804 Treaty of St. Louis.
Hazleton is a city in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 25,340 at the 2010 census. Hazleton is the second largest city in Luzerne County and the seventeenth largest city in Pennsylvania. It was incorporated as a borough on January 5, 1857, and as a city on December 4, 1891.
Sugarloaf Township is a township in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 4,211 at the 2010 census.
Walter Butler was a British Loyalist officer during the American Revolution. He was born near Johnstown, New York, the son of John Butler, a wealthy Indian agent who worked for Sir William Johnson. Walter Butler studied law, and became a lawyer in Albany, New York.
The Battle of Kettle Creek was a minor encounter in the back country of Georgia during the American Revolutionary War. It was fought in Wilkes County about eight miles (13 km) from present-day Washington, Georgia. A militia force of Patriots decisively defeated and scattered a Loyalist militia force that was on its way to British-controlled Augusta.
The Battle of Moore's Creek Bridge was a battle of the American Revolutionary War fought near Wilmington in present-day Pender County, North Carolina, on February 27, 1776. The victory of North Carolina Revolutionary forces over Southern Loyalists helped build political support for the revolution and increased recruitment of additional soldiers into their forces.
The Battle of Springfield was fought during the American Revolutionary War on June 23, 1780. After the Battle of Connecticut Farms, on June 7, 1780, had foiled Lieutenant General Wilhelm, Baron von Knyphausen’s expedition to attack General George Washington’s army at Morristown, New Jersey, Knyphausen and Lieutenant General Sir Henry Clinton, British commander-in-chief in North America, decided upon a second attempt. Although the British were initially able to advance, they were ultimately forced to withdraw in the face of newly arriving rebel forces, resulting in a Continental victory. The battle effectively ended British ambitions in New Jersey.
The Southern theater of the American Revolutionary War was the central theater of military operations in the second half of the American Revolutionary War, 1778–1781. It encompassed engagements primarily in Virginia, Georgia and South Carolina. Tactics consisted of both strategic Battles and guerrilla warfare.
Captain Lazarus Stewart was an 18th-century Pennsylvanian frontiersman and member of the Paxton Rangers. He is suspected of being a member of the "Paxton Boys" – a group of Scots-Irish militants who massacred the Conestoga Indians in 1763 – and was a prominent commander on the Yankee side in the Pennamite Wars. He met his death in battle with the Loyalists and Iroquois at the Wyoming Massacre, in an attack precipitated by his own rashness.
The Battle of Johnstown was fought in Johnstown, New York. It was one of the last battles in the Northern theatre of the American Revolutionary War, with approximately 1400 engaged at Johnstown on October 25, 1781. Local American forces, led by Colonel Marinus Willett of Johnstown, ultimately put to flight the British forces under the command of Major John Ross of the King's Royal Regiment of New York and Captain Walter Butler of Butler's Rangers.
The Northern theater of the American Revolutionary War after Saratoga consisted of a series of battles between American revolutionaries and British forces, from 1778 to 1782 during the American Revolutionary War. It is characterized by two primary areas of activity. The first set of activities was based around the British base of operations in New York City, where each side made probes and counterprobes against the other's positions that sometimes resulted in notable actions. The second was essentially a frontier war in Upstate New York and rural northern Pennsylvania that was largely fought by state militia companies and some Indian allies on the American side, and Loyalist companies supported by Indians, British Indian agents, and occasionally British regulars. The notable exception to significant Continental Army participation on the frontier was the 1779 Sullivan Expedition, in which General John Sullivan led an army expedition that drove the Iroquois out of New York. The warfare amongst the splinters of the Iroquois Six Nations were particularly brutal, turning much of the Indian population into refugees.
Fort Antes was a stockade surrounding the home of Colonel John Henry Antes, built circa 1778 in Revolutionary Pennsylvania in the United States. The fort was built under the direction of Colonel Antes, who was a member of the Pennsylvania militia. It was on the east side of Antes Creek, overlooking and on the left bank of the West Branch Susquehanna River on a plateau in Nippenose Township south of modern day Jersey Shore in western Lycoming County. The local militia held the fort for a short period of time until it was ordered to abandon Fort Antes during the Big Runaway by Colonel Samuel Hunter. Despite being abandoned and attempts by the attacking British forces to burn it down, Fort Antes was one of only two structures in the valley to survive the Big Runaway.
The Battle of Ramsour's Mill took place on June 20, 1780 in present-day Lincolnton, North Carolina, during the British campaign to gain control of the southern colonies in the American Revolutionary War. The number of fighters on each side of the battle is still an issue of contention, but Loyalist militiamen outnumbered Patriot militia and had captured a group of Patriots who they were planning to hang on the morning of June 20.
The Battle of Klock's Field, also called the Battle of Failing's Orchard; and occasionally the Battle of Nellis Flatts or the Battle of Stone Arabia, was an encounter between Albany County, New York militia and a British-supported expedition of Indians and Loyalists led by Lieutenant Colonel Sir John Johnson and Captain Joseph Brant.
Huck's Defeat or the Battle of Williamson's Plantation was an engagement of the American Revolutionary War that occurred in present York County, South Carolina on July 12, 1780, and was one of the first battles of the southern campaign to be won by Patriot militia.
The Skirmish at Waters Creek was a minor action fought on March 8, 1781, during the American Revolutionary War. It was fought near Waters Creek in Newport News, Virginia between a group of local Patriot militia and British Army troops.
The Battle of Buffalo took place during the War of 1812 on December 30, 1813, in the State of New York, near the Niagara River. The British forces drove off the defenders and destroyed many buildings and ships. The operation was retaliation for American troops burning the Canadian village of Newark.
Drums is an unincorporated community in Butler Township, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania. Located about 1,500 feet (460 m) altitude in the Sugarloaf Valley, it sits east of Interstate 81 and north of Nescopeck Creek, a tributary of the Susquehanna River. It was founded by the Drum family in the late 18th century originally and was originally known as Drum's. Its ZIP Code is 18222, served by the 788 exchange in Area Code 570.
William "Bloody Bill" Cunningham was an American loyalist infamous for perpetrating a series of bloody massacres in South Carolina's backcountry in the fall of 1781 as commander of a Tory militia regiment in the Revolutionary War. Though his family were loyal to the British crown, Cunningham initially enlisted in the Continental Army as part of the State of South Carolina's 3rd regiment in 1775. His tenure in the rebel army was an unhappy one and Cunningham changed sides to fight for the British in 1778. He earned the nickname "Bloody Bill" for the violent, ruthless nature of his raids on rebels and patriot civilians.
The California Indian Wars were a series of massacres, wars, and battles between the United States Army, and the Indigenous peoples of California. The wars lasted from 1850, immediately after the acquisition of Alta California during the Mexican–American War became the state of California, to 1880 when the last minor military operation on the Colorado River that ended the Calloway Affair of 1880.