The RAID at MARTINS pt4

Saturday May 9- Awoke after a fantastic night's sleep on my new straw bed, ate and dressed. I stashed my medical equipment inside the fort in the event that it should be needed later.

I encountered mr. Young whom you may recall as the gentleman who made the 'fantastic request' some time ago. We spent a good deal of time together talking and walking about. After we parted, I aided mr. Jas. Moore in setting up his book binding equipment under the shelter of a tent out among the shops.

Tensions were high, and scouts reported heavy Indian activity to the Southwest. The militia was put on guard and a batch were sent out on foot, as well as a group on horseback. I believe those on horseback were from Capt. Ben Logan's Fayette County Militia. After a time, they could be seen returning through the woods. Capt. Logan is easily identified by the white horse that he rides.

They had just about gotten back to the station when shots rang out! Capt. Martin shouted to get everyone into the safety of the fort walls. There was a group of men out tending gardens and chopping wood that were caught without a means of defense. One was injured and had to be carried back in by another nearby man.

Capt. Martin opened the gate to let additional militia out to do battle with the Indian force.

The battle in images...

More of the battle...


After the battle, young mr. Baldwin and I scoured the field for survivors, and I was agrieved to discover that Capt. Johnson, whom I had met earlier in the day, was laid out on the field of battle. He, and much of his company were down in the area near the blacksmith's shop. Mr. McBee, who was also with Johnson's group, was nowhere to be found.

We then set to the work of operating on the wounded. I removed musket balls from two men, and bits of wood from the right leg of young mr. Bealer just below the knee. Bealer was on the artillery crew for the fort's lone cannon, 'Vengeance'. The artillery piece helped to turn the tide of battle.


I instructed mr. Baldwin in the procedure as I went.

After I had completed my duties as surgeon, Capt. Martin decided it was safe for us to roam about outside the fort walls again.

I spent the remainder of the afternoon in the shops and had supper with Parson John and Maggie. We talked for quite some time.

Near sunset, I made my way back over the small rise toward the fort and was able to spy the settlers just outside the fort wall celebrating their earlier victory with music and dancing. I could see them from the hilltop where I was perched, it was quite a picturesque scene. Then, from the tree-line, I spotted a band of indians. They were in greater numbers than before. The battle raged, as I kept to the safety of the hilltop, unseen. With no weapon of my own in hand, I would do little good during the battle.

The indians were routed again, and once they had returned to the wilderness, I rushed onto the field to once again tend to the injured. Capt. Logan's men brought in one of their own from the field and put him upon the table with a musket ball in the shoulder.

The patient fought me ferociously, it took several surgeon's mates to hold him down, more so than usual. At one point his right arm came free and struck me in the stomach! I had to call another man over to take hold of the offending limb. In all, it required 4-5 men to hold him in position as I worked to remove the ball.

As I worked, I became suddenly aware of something that was quite a shock to me. I am fairly certain that the wounded soldier was a woman in men's dress! Perhaps this is the reason she fought me so adamantly, because she knew I would discover her secret if she were to be examined closely.

After a bit of consideration, I did not feel inclined to reveal her to her captain, and released her with her secret intact. If she were discovered, she would most certainly be exiled from the safety of the station, and that would serve no one in the end.

My evening was spent in revelry with Captain Ben Logan and his lot in their camp just outside the fort blockhouse. It began with all of the company gather'd around the fire as the Capt. told humorous stories about their company's past exploits. Once when mr. Mains earned the name of 'mr. Mange' and the Capt. ordering him to bathe due to his smell, or be thrown bodily into the river by a group of his fellows.

Captain Logan was very animated, telling each story using different voices for each character and gesturing wildly throughout.

There was also set to be a wrestling match between one of the men from Logan's bunch and one from the Augusta County militia, but by the time Logan's man was ready for it, the other militia had gone to bed.

After a bit of roaming about and visiting, we all returned to Logan's camp and sang songs, many of the more ribald I had never heard before, and I have no doubt would shock even the saltiest of sailors. We had great fun!

2 comments:

W. A. Mozart said...

A woman in a man's clothing -- imagine that! But tell me, did not her voice give her away?

A fascinating account, Herr Doktor!

The Doctor said...

I was too busy to notice the voice as perhaps I should.