Thursday, May 28, 2009


Not long after Jeremiah Swain sent the last letter, it seems colonial political
affairs occurred that would lead to his recall.

Back in 1643, the colonies of Massachusetts Bay, Plymouth, Connecticut
and New Haven had formed the New England Confederation to deal with
matters of mutual defense against the Indians. It's high point came during
the King Philip's War but it had begun falling apart even before the end of
the war. Now, in 1689, an attempt was being made to revive it, and it
now weighed in on the Maine campaign. Jeremiah Swain was the commander
of the troops from the Bay Colony, while those from Plymouth Colony were
under Benjamin Church's command. Now word came down from the
Confederation Commision that Swain and his men were to be withdrawn.

It's interesting to see that the order was recorded in triplicate!

"Ordered vt Major Jeremia Swaine and his officers with al the Soldiers in ye
Countryes Sarvis from Wels Westward be forth with drawn of: Exsept so
many of hiered men and others unto a competent numbr for the Secureing
Such places as thay shall Judg needfull for the present:

Leiveing them under Such Comanders as said Swaine & his officers shall Judg
meet pticular acct being tacken of them vt are so Left.

9 br 6th 1689 past in the affirmative by the Representatives
Ebenezer Prout Clerk."


"Boston : 8° November 1689.
The Comissioners of the Colonys haveing comended it to the Governor & Councill
that the Souldiers belonging to the ffrontier Town's now at any of the head Quarters
together with all Sick, wounded and otherwise unfitted for Service be forthwith

dismissed home: As also the Troopers there or elsewhere; And in case there be not
a prospect of an Oppertunity to prosecute the Enemy that then the Indians that are
upon Service and so many of the English Souldiers as may with Safety to the People
of the remote Plantations be spared be as conveniently & privatly as may be returned
home -

It is Agreed and Ordered in case there be no prospect of prosecuting the Enemy, That
Major Jeremiah Swayne Comander in chiefe of the Forces at Newichewannick or

Salmon Falls, with the advice of his Comission Officers and Some of the principal
Gentlemen of the Province of New Hampshire and Maine (neerest to him) do post a
sufficient number of Souldiers at such Garrisons and out plantations in those parts as

may secure the same and Offend the Enemy in case of Attempt, to be disposed under
suitable Officers for their good Government and Order, takeing distinct Lists of the
names & number of souldiers Ordered to remain at Each place.

And the said Comander in Cheife. and other his Officers and Souldiers as privatly as
may be forthwith to draw off home and be discharged./.
Voted by the Gouernor & Council
la: Russell p ordr
Consented to by the Representatives.
Dated as abovesd
Ebenezer Prout Clerk"

and finally....

"Boston 8 Novembr 1689. Major Swayne
Inclosed is Copy of the Order of the Convention of the Governour and Council and Representatives Pursuant to what is contended to consideration by the Comissioners
of the Colonys as to yor drawing off with the Forces under yor comand in case there
be no prospect of prosecuting the Enemy, In which you are to. advise with yor
Comission Officers, and the Officers and some of the principal Gents of the Provinces
of New Hampshire & Mayne (nearest unto yon ) For the Setling of such Garrisons as
may be needfull for the Security of those parts before you come off, not exceeding
what are of absolute necessity And releive the Garrison Souldiers at Cochecha posting
some fresh men there in their stead if there be need of continuing any there and such

as you leave behind let those men who were hired out upon the Service be part of the
number and others such as may most conveniently be spared from home; But use yor
utmost Endeavours with the Gentlemen of the Province that they Supply the Garrisons

as much as may be with their own men, that the fewer of ours who have been long
upon duty be left abroad. The above is recommended to yor care and prudence by ye

Governor and Councill./.
By Order in Councill
Isc. Addington Sec17-
To Major Jeremiah Swayne
Comander in Chiefe of ye Forces at Salmon Falls "

Found in "Documentary History of the State of Maine" pp70-74

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