Tag Archives: KCT

Chronological Table of events in Maine at the beginning of King William’s War


1686 June 3 June 3, 1886 Andros became Governor of New England by commission of James II
1686 Sep 19 James II orders that the jurisdiction of Pemaquid  be in the hands of Andros
1687/8 Jan 13 A tax of one penny in the pound assessed “on all the late Colonies and Provinces toward defraying the public charges of this Government”
1688 March/Apr Andros wanted to assert his jurisdiction on a traditionally French territory. He sailed on his sloop to Pemiquid and there met the Frigate Rose. He loaded her up with carpenters, lumber and nails. It was his intention to repair an old English fort on the banks of the Penobscot after making his point to Baron de St Castin. When EA got to Penobscot Castin and his family had fled into the woods. EA sacked the house and fort of Castin taking household goods and ammunition.
Collections of the Maine Historical Society Ser 1 vol 7          54   
1688 Aug 6 In N. Yarmouth some Indians got drunk and argumentative with Henry and Sam Lanes. They threatened to kill one of his hogs at the end of July. Saco Indians fired on cattle that got into their corn wounding cattle then threatened to shoot at the English if they didn’t keep their cows from repeatedly eating the Indian’s corn.   Saco Indians had been deprived of their food sources. The English had not paid them the corn agreed upon in the 1878 treaty. They were stretching nets across the Saco River, thereby preventing fish from getting to where the Indians fished, and finally the Englishmen’s cattle were eating what little corn the Indians were able to grow. Benjamin
Blackman of Saco then gathered up 16 to 20 Saco Indians who had been leaders against the English during King Phillips war.
Documentary History of the State
of Maine, Volume 6        


Narratives of the Indian War 1675-1699                                            


1688 Aug 13 Indians surprise and break up the settlement of North Yarmouth on the Royals River in retribution for Saco Indians capture
1688 Sep 5-6 Indians attack and burn New Dartmouth (Newcastle) and destroy the fort and break up the settlement at Sheepscot River Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume 6       443
1688 Oct 4-9 Letters of apology to E Andros from Tyng, Dudley, etc for capturing and sending to Boston the Indians from Saco. Apparently Andros is furious. Tyng admits his instructions caused Blackman to to round up the Saco Indians
1688 Oct 11 Letter from Gov Andros to John Allyn dated Oct 16, 1688 5am (John Barrett’s brother and father or Barrow & Bussey) Sr. I have this night received advise from Boston that ye 11th instant one man was found killed by Indians to ye Eastward att Cape Porpus & severall others missing who are feared to be lost, the Indians beingstill out doe not yett knowtheir number or of others joyned with them, But could not omittthis informacon to yorselfe together with y inclosed to Capt Nicholson and Major Generall Winthropp, which desire you toforward by expresse, of with presume ye Bearer a fitt person for one, and Remaine, Sr, Yor very affectionate friend E. Andros The Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut 1636-1776


1688 Oct 27 Andros set sail on the Frigate Rose with Radcliff from Expedition to the eastward – Sewall
1688/9 Feb 14 The crown (of England) was offered by the Lords and Commons to William and Mary
1688/9 Mar 14 King William tells Lord Wharton and Mr. Mather in person that he intends to remove Andros from the government of New England and be called unto an account for his Male-Administration. Andros Tracts  150
1688/9 Mar 24 Andros is back in Boston. He appoints a committee to “receive contributions” from the inhabitants of Boston toward building
“a house or place for the service of the Church of England”.

1688/9 Mar 28 
Order concerning soldiers at Saco
Order – Information being given that 17 soldiers yt were put into the Garrison at Saco, have Deserted their trust, & their Magesy’s service, and is a very bad president. It is ordered that said soldiers be forthwith summoned to appear before this court to give account of their action herein. As also those yet are come away disorderly from Cochecho, or any other of ye Garrisons.// voted in ye Consent of ye representatives by order Ja: Russell
Doc History of the State of Maine, Volume 6


Petition of Lieut-Col Tyng and others Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume 6


1689 Apr
Letter to Gov. Andros  from D.
The great cry among the people is concerning the sick and weak soldiers to the eastward which if your Excellency would be pleased to permit to come home would be a great obligation to them tho others were sent there, if your Excellency see cause for it and if your Excellency would please to signify to me that if there be occasion you will order Garrisons in our out towns hereabouts, it may be a great means to quiet these tumults.
Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume 6

1689 Apr 9 Testimony of George LittleThat he heard Wm Sargeant of Amesbury affirm Apr 8th that he was informed by the Indians, That the great man (Andros) had hired the Indians to come down on the English, to destroy them, & had given some coats & some money, by the great man he in after discourse mentioned the governor. That he further said that the southern Indians had given over their designe, on notice that the prince of Orange
was Protector in England, & so they hoped for better timed. That the Eastern Indians were for war, but Penicook Indians if they were hired or set forward by the English, would undertake to
cutt them off. Taken on oathApril 10, 1689 before me, Jo: Woodbridge J.P.
Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume 6


1689 Apr 12
Warrent for assistance to Capt John Floyd on his March to
From Andros to all Justices of ye peace sheriffs constables etc. Whereas I am given to understand that several of ye soldiers in his majesty’s  service on ye expedition eastward under the command of Capt John Floyd have in a mutinous manner left and deserted their post and station at Saco River contrary to their officers commands and whereas I have given orders to their said capt to move and march them again to their said post and station there to remain till further order. These are therefore in his majesty’s name straightly to charge and require you and every of you to be helpful aiding and providing for ye soldiersunder his command in their said march and in case any shall refuse to obey him as their commander that then you likewise afford him all aid and assistance to compel same or secure ye person or persons so refusing to be sent to this place and proceeded against accordingly. For which this shall be your warrent. Given under my hand and seal at Boston ye 12th day of Apr 1689
Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume 6          
1689 Apr 12 Order for Capt John Floyd with his men to his station at Saco River by Andros For as much as you have given me to understand that several of ye soldiers under your command have in a mutinous manner contrary to your order left & deserted their service and station at Saco River and are marching toward this place. You are therefore forthwith to repair to your said station and by the way to command and March back any soldiers you shall meet with and taking care that they comport themselves orderly and duly pay and discharge their quarters and there remain till further order. You are to commit any person or persons that have or shall be mutinous or refectory, to be sent hither and proceeded against accordingly.  You are also to take ye charge and command of ye Garrison at Kennebunk and appoint such officers and soldiers there and relieve them from time to time as you shall think fit. Given under my hand and seal ye 12th day of April in ye fifth year of ye reign of our sovereign Lord James Documentary History of the State of Maine, Volume 6         
1689 Apr 12 Warrant by his Excellency Gov Andros  Being informed that contrary to order you have quitted and discharged ye garrison and soldiers at Kennebunk put under your command I have therefore given Capt Floyd ye charge and command thereof and hereby require you forthwith to repair to me to answer ye above and what else may be objected against you on his Majesty’s behalf whereof you are not to fail. Dated att Boston ye 12th day of April 1689 to Leiut John Puddington at Kennebunk Doc History of the State of Maine, Vol 6          
1689 Apr 18 Apr 18 1689 Sir Edmund Andros deposed and imprisoned in Boston
Colonial Self-Government 


1689 Apr 22
Cape Porpoise attacked

Transactions of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts       


1689 April Francis Lyford of Exeter hired by Captain John Perkins of Portsmouth to sail to Saco and bring away “the distressed inhabitants when the Indians were burning and destroying all about them” Cape Porpus was considered part of Saco in 1689, by a 1688 order of Gov. Andros, much to the chagrin of Cape Porpus inhabitants.     
1689 Apr 25 Letter from Wells to “ye superior power now being at Boston” Indian attack on Saco and Cape Porpoise WELLS ; 25th Aprill 1689 — May it plese your Hon. wee haue receiued certain information that ye 2_th of this Instant being Lords day, the Indians; suposed to be eight or ten ; sundry of them well known to y inhabitance of Saco came upon said town, surprising y people, in their houses: wounded to y number of fiue or six, burnt two houses, with all the goods y owners with great difficulty escapeing: y next day they came to Cape-Porpus burnt a house begun to be Garrisoned, belonging to Nicho Moorey slew one young man: uiz: John Barrett (whose father and two Brothers, were killed by sum Indians as is supposed, ye last fall) took y slain mans horse and another out of a pasture and rode about triumphantly in uiew of y desolate Inhabitance: who for their safty) were forced to forsake y Terra firma or main and to betake themselues to an Island: where is a Garrison, where they remained in a deplorable case, and are subject to staruing, or murder, or both if speedy succor be not afforded. their cattle, it is to be feared, are mostly killed y Indians shooting uery often in y woods. y certainty, of y premises we reciue from two men, who went on purpose for information : of which we thought meet to giue your Hon an account so leauing your Hon to y Protection of heauen, and y sad case of y distressed to your most serious compastionate thoughts. wee subscribe — Your Hon. most humble seruants
Transactions of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts   
1689 July 30 Andros and Randolph who are both imprisined in Boston request that either they be set at liberty or sent to England in protective custady. An order to that effect is issued Edward Randolph papers           
1689/90 February Andros is sent to England after having been imprisoned in Boston for 10 months. Instead of being imprisoned in England he was released In 1692 he was appointed the Governor of Virginia  
   Answer to Edmund Andros Account of the forces raised in New England for Defence of the country against the Indians in the year 1688. Humbly offered by the agents of the Massachusetts Colony to the right honorable  the lords of the committee for plantations Andros Tracts

Mrs. Cmaylo’s excellent adventure

Scraper backMrs. Kathy Cmaylo, teacher at Consolidated School in Kennebunkport is an avid Kayaker. She loves to visit the islands in Cape Porpoise Harbor and take photographs of the treasures she finds there. In August of 2008, something tapped against her leg as she stepped out of her boat onto Green Island aka President George H.W. Bush Island.  She gave the artifact to the Kennebunkport Conservation Trust.  They have teamed up with the Maine State Museum to do some archeological investigation on several of the islands in Cape Porpoise Harbor.   For more information, see Hunt for Stage Island Fort  and  Desperate Letter from Wells 

Walking All Over A President at Downeast.com

Scraper front

Ancient skulls uncovered at Cape Arundel

Olean Evening Times October 17, 1919
Olean Evening Times October 17, 1919

Atwater Kent’s neighbors called him a grave robber when he bought the land next to his Cape Arundel home near St Ann’s and dug up the graves of early Cape Porpoise Settlers to expand his lawn.

In a letter to her daughter Alice, Eleanor Rogers, who summered at what is now the Franciscan Monestary, wrote of Atwater Kent:

“Since he bought the point and dug out the old fort and burned off the rubbish, he has just had permission from relatives left, of the buried ancestors to remove their bones.  It is hard to locate those without stones as it was the habit of that day to remove the handles from the coffins and the name plate and mount them on velvet, as a parlor ornament.  He had in his pocket a white obsidiary arrowhead, one of the best I ever saw, which was under a skull as they lifted it, and the skull had a hole into which the arrow had just fitted, at the base of the brain.”

The Biddeford Weekly Journal reported the remarkable discovery on October 10, 1919.  The story in the Biddeford newspaper varied slightly from the one Mrs. Rogers told.   The reporter considered the discovery of special interest to students of the earliest history of Maine.

“In removing a grassy mound which was situated close to the fort and was no doubt embracedin the land occupied as a cemetery the workmen came across at a depth of about six feet a perfect skull (not skeleton) of a white man imbedded in which was an indian arrow, the weapon sticking out from the top of the skull just as apparently it had been left when the victim was buried after being slain by a redskin with bow and arrow.  Equally remarkable and interesting was another find in almost the same spot, which was that of a skull showing plainly that the man had been scalped by Indians.  The very tip of the victim’s head had in this case been cut off as clean and smooth as the most skillful scalper could do the job.”

The only partial skeleton found, according to the Biddeford reporter, was that of the man that based on the size of individual bones was hypothosized to be seven feet tall.  “It is certain,” the newsman continued, “that when the facts reach the ears of the of the officials at the Maine Historical Society… doubtless further excavations will be made.”  Apparently that never happened, in spite of the fact that Henry S. Burrage, the State Historian, summered in Kennebunkport.

The cemetery was that of the Jeremiah Smith family.  Atwater Kent moved most of the Smith’s to the Landing Cemetery and Arundel Cemetery but the skeleton and two skulls found under the grass mound adjacent to the old 1812 fort must have been much older.  Indians were using guns for hunting  during the 17th century but arrows and tomahawks were war weapons into the 18th century.  Many of the Indians described in Bradbury’s history used guns to attack the settlers.

Mrs. Rogers calls the arrowhead “white obsidiary”.  Even assuming she meant “obsidian,” it is still puzzling since obsidian was reportedly not found in New England.

The Kennebunkport Historical Society has a human skull in the vault that in the catalog is described as a skull found by Atwater Kent at Kennebunk Point.  It is further explained that at one time the arrowhead accompanied the skull but it was lost before the Historical Society received it.  The damage to the skull looks more like the clean cut described as having been caused by a tomahawk.  There is one scalping described in Bradbury’s history.  Old white-haired Mr. Joseph Bailey was scalped by an Indian at the site of the Garrison House in Cape Porpoise in October of 1723.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful to learn how old the skull at the Historical Society is?

Read about the Indian attacks that we know took place in the Kennebunks.  Included are attacks that took place on Trotts Island and on Vaughn’s Island.

Known Indian attacks on the Kennebunks

Apr 1689 Stage Island attack

1688 Oct 11 –  Bussey and Barrow – Barrow may actuallyhave  been Barrett.  (see 1689).  A letter dated Oct 16, 1688, written by John Allyn to Gov Andros, refers to an attack at Cape Porpoise that took place on Oct 11.

  • 1689  Apr  –  Attack at Stage Island Fort.  John Barrett was killed.  An Indian attack on Cape Porpoise is described in a desperate letter from Wells   “they came to Cape-Porpus burnt a house begun to be Garrisoned, belonging to Nicho Moorey slew one young man: uiz: John Barrett (whose father and two Brothers, were killed by sum Indians as is supposed, ye last fall)”

1703   –  Stephen Harding and his family fled their home in time to save themselves from an Indian attack.

The Durrell family upriver were not so fortunate.  Philip Durrell’s wife and 4 children were kidnapped while he was away from home.  Mrs. Durrell persuaded the Indians to let her return home with her one infant son.  She was kidnapped again in 1726 and she , her daughter and infant granddaughter were all killed.

1713   –  William Larrabee’s family was killed at his home near Butler’s Rock.

1723   –  The Old Garrison House now stands in Cape Porpoise at the site of the earlier Major’s Garrison.  White-haired Mr. Joseph Baily was scalped and killed by Indians there in October of 1723.   During the same month, two men from Huff’s Garrison, Fitz Henry, and Bartow, being on Vaughn’s Island for wood, were surprised and wounded by three Indians.  The Indians tortured the two men, trying to get them to reveal the number of men at the garrison.  The Indians killed them and threw their bodies into a creek on the island which still bears the name Fitz Henry’s Ditch.  Also in 1723, Thirty women and children were sheltered at Harding’s Garrison when Chief  WaWa of Great Hill and his men unsuccessfully attacked.

1724 Mar   –   Felt, Wormwood and Lewis were killed by Indians while loading lumber onto a vessel anchored on the Kennebunk River.  All three were killed with bullets.  Sergeant Smith, of the Cape Porpoise fort, was killed by Indians on March 23, 1724.  Bradbury says he was killed at the fort on Stage Island but the new fort had already been built.  Others say Smith was killed on Vaughn’s Island.

1725  –  Mr. Huff’s daughter was milking his cow near Huff’s garrison when she was attacked by an Indian.  She knocked him down with her milk pail and made her escape to the house.  The same year, a boy was sent to Trott’s Island to retrieve his father’s cow.  When he didn’t return another son was sent and then a third.  None of the boys ever returned.  The next morning their heads were discovered elevated on poles and seven Indians were tracked from Trott’s Island.  A man was also killed by Indians at Goff’s Brook in 1725.

1726 – Oct The Durrell family home was once again attacked by Indians on October 26, 1726. John Wheelwright described the attack in a letter he wrote to Boston the following day:

“Phillip Durrell of Kennebunk, went from his house with one of his sons to work, the sun being about two hours high, leaving at home his wife, a son twelve years old, and a married daughter with a child 20 months old. He returned home a little before sunset, when he found his family all gone, and his house set on fire, his chests split open and all his clothing carried away. He searched the woods and found no signs of any killed.”

In his History of Kennebunkport, Charles Bradbury wrote of the horrible event:

“The Indians encamped the first night near where Sherburn’s meeting house now is. In the morning, finding they were hotly pursued,* and Mrs. Durrell being lame and Mrs. Baxter not being in a situation to keep up with them, they cruelly and brutally killed them both. John, Mrs. Baxter’s child, being rather troublesome, two Indians took it, one hold of each leg and dashed its brains out against a tree. They were killed near Duck brook. John Durrell was carried to Canada, and exchanged in about two years. He had however so far acquired the habits of the savages, that he ever after appeared more like an Indian than a white man. After peace was firmly established, Wah wa [Sagamore of Wells] used unfeelingly to describe to Mr. Baxter, the inhuman manner in which his wife was killed, and boast of his agency in her murder. Mr. Baxter’s friends advised him to roll the savage into a well, as he was
lying intoxicated near its brink, but he refused to do it A bible belonging to Mr. Baxter, was left by the Indians, in the woods where they encamped ; and it was
found the next spring but little injured. The leaves were taken out separately and dried, and the book rebound. “

The Perkins family were not the first to have a mill on Mast Cove.

Grist Mill Lot

Reynolds was given a 200 acres lot by the Court for running a ferry across the Kennebunk River

1675 Apr 12 Rishworth to John Reynolds Certificate to father’s estate

1684 Nov 4 Son John had inherited.

1687 Jan 2 John Rennals sold to Nich Moorey a 60A lot on Long creek aka Mast cove oppisite Gillams point. Moorey’s lot ran 20 poles upstream from the creek’s mouth and 60 poles downstream.

Book VI Folio 49 John Rennels to Nicholas Moorey Jan 2, 1687
In the town book in 1688/9 Nicholas Morey has a mill on land that ajoins that of Rennals.
1701 Oct 2 Moorey sold his lot to Storer, Hill and Batson 60A at Long Creek or Mast Cove bot of John Reynolds.

October 2, 1701

Cape Porpoise was deserted more than once. Upon the settlers return the town reassigned lots in 1720 to those who could prove ownership. Book XI Folio 205

This new lot assignment shifts the lot from both sides of Mast Cove to the land between Mast Cove and Bass Cove and adds 40 acres. Note the location of the known mills


1725 Mar 12 Samuel Hill to John Storer my son mill privilidges at Long Creek (and land at Kennebunk River land at Bass Cove T19) lot then shared by just Batson and Storer

1725 Dec 6 Widow and heirs of Batson to Dependence Littlefield Son in-law. Dower rightes in Mill is occupation of said Dependence