Letter from Joseph Dudley to John Leverett

May it Please Your Honor, [1] 
 
I am commanded by the General[2] to give Your Honor account of our proceeding since our last from Pawtuxet. In the Sabbath evening we advanced the whole body from Mr. Carpenter's[3] with intent to surprise Pumham and his party at about ten or twelve miles distance, having information by our Warwick scouts of his seat, but the darkness of the night, difficulty of our passage, and unskillfulness of pilots, we passed the whole night and found ourselves at such distance yet from them that we diverted and marched to Mr. Smith's[4], found our sloops from Seekonk arrived since, which by the help of Indian Peter,[5] by whom Your Honor had the information formerly of the number and resolution of the Narragansetts.  We have burned two of their towns, viz., Ahmus,[6] who is this summer come down amongst them and the Old Queen's[7] quarters,[8] consisting of about one hundred and fifty, many of them large wigwams, and seized and slain fifty persons in all.  Our prisoners, being about forty, concerning whom the general prays your advice concerning their transportation or disposal, all which was performed without any loss, save a slight wound by an arrow in Lieutenant Wyman's[9] face.  The whole body of them we find removed into their great swamp at Canonicus[10] his quarters, where we hope with the addition of Connecticut, when arrived, we hope to coop them up.  This day we intend the removal or spoil of their corn and hope tomorrow a march toward them.  Our soldiers, being very cheerful, are forward not withstanding great difficulty by weather and otherwiſe.  Abovesaid Peter, whom we have found very faithful, will make us believe that there are two thousand fighting men, though many unarmed, many well-fitted with lances.  We hope by cutting off their forage to force them to a fair battle.  In the meantime I have only to present the General’s humble service to your and to beg your intense prayers for this so great concern
 
And remain Your Honor’s humble servant,
 
Joseph Dudley
Mr. Smith’s, December 15, 1675
 
Post Script:
Goodale[11] nor Moore[12] arrived.  We fear want of shot.  My humble service to Madam Leverett,[13] Brother[14] and Sister Hubbard [15] and Dudley[16].  Amongst our prisoners and slain, we find ten or twelve Wampanoags.
 
Cataloguing:
101

[1] Governor John Leverett
[2] General Josiah Winslow
[3] William Carpenter
[4] Richard Smith's trading house at Aquidnessett (Wickford, Rhode Island).
[5] Indian Peter was the Narragansett who guided English forces to the Narragansett fortress in the Great Swamp in December 1675 on the belief that his assistance would prevent him and his family from being held captive and sent into slavery. 
[6] Ahmus
[7] The Old Queen was Quaiapen.
[8] Built by an Indian called "Stonewall John," the Queen's stone fortress was located upon an elevation on the present line between North Kingston and Exeter, Rhode Island.  Colonial forces destroyed a Narragansett village to the southwest of this fort, at the head of the Shewatuck brook on December 14, 1675.  Ellis and Morris, King Philip's War, 146.
[9] Lieutenant John Wyman
[10] Canonicus’ main village was at Squakheague.  The Swamp Fort was nine miles away. Sidney Smith Rider, The Lands of Rhode Island: As They were Known to Caunounicus and Miantunnomu When Roger Williams Came in 1636 (Providence, RI: The Chronicle Printing Co. 1904), 263.
[11] Richard Goodale
[12] Thomas Moore
[13] Sarah Sedgwicke Leverett
[14] Brother Hubbard.  Most likely William Hubbard (1621-September 14, 1704), son of William and Judith Knapp of Tendring, Essex, England, who with his parents immigrated to Ipswich, Massachusetts in 1635.  Hubbard graduated from Harvard in 1642 and was ordained in 1658.  In 1676 Hubbard wrote his account of King Philip's War, Present State of New England, Being a Narrative of the Troubles with the Indians in New-England (London: Thomas Parkhurst, 1677).  In 1682, on behalf of the Massachusetts General Court, Hubbard wrote A General History of New England from the Discovery to MDCLXXX.  He also served as temporary president of Harvard College in 1684 and 1688.  ODNB.  ANBO.  Jill Lepore, The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity (New York: Vintage Books, 1999).
[15] Sister Hubbard.  Margaret Rogers
[16] Joseph Dudley