further attempt was made under General Hunter that August for three
raids, all without effect.
In November, Jamaica was divided into two districts to facilitate the
forces. By December, the Council of Trade and Plantations sent to
the Duke of Newcastle a letter stating the following, "which all
relate to the ill state of Jamaica with regard to the negroes in
rebellion, weak condition of the inhabitants and the apprehensions they
are under of a general insurrection of their slaves.” Governor
Hunter sent to them on December 24th, “I can not without breach of
duty conceal my opinion that this island is in a very defenceless
condition in case of a war. The slaves in rebellion, who give us work
enough, in that event are not the most dangerous ; here are men of
desperate fortunes and more desperate principles who have too much
influence on the majority, are gaping after change, and if I may judge
from their pass'd conduct would readily joyn with any such.” He
was concerned for more than just a Negro rebellion, but for a general
rebellion as well.
pamphlet titled, “The State of the Island of Jamaica, addressed to a
Member of Parliament” was published in which the writer urges the
"necessitty there is, that not only a revenue be settled equal to
the annual expense of the Government, but also a provision be made by
some new laws for the better recovery of just debts, and the better
peopling and settling of the island, at the same time that the body of
laws are re-enacted or confirmed by the Crown." The problem
became a fiscal one for the British which resulted in a treaty with the
Maroons that lasts until this day.
British regiments arrived by 1734. Thus, Dring may well have
returned to Rhode Island and his merchant activities by that time, but
with Jamaica firmly on his mind. Did Azariah Dring get caught up
in this state of legislative affairs? Did he fight against the
taxes on slave imports? Quite possibly, he did.
England had a tremendous role in the slave trade – especially Rhode
Island. Quoting from Brown University’s Steering
Report, “In all, about sixty percent of slave trading voyages
launched from North America – in some years more than ninety percent
– issued from tiny Rhode Island.” Furthermore, his son would
later demonstrate zero tolerance against escaped slaves in the colony of
South Carolina. Dring very possibly was a slave trader. This
occupation would have peaked his interest in the 10s duty on
importation/exportation of slaves passed in 1732 and so hotly debated
through 1734 when the latest rebellion began. He may have paused
in his business to fight this legislation. It seems he stalled in
his activity for more than a year.
may simply have supplied the Caribbean isles with necessaries. The
Caribbean sugar isles concentrated so heavily on production that they
had to import everything else. From the Steering
Report: “Rhode Island dominated this trade, operating, in
essence, as the commissary of the Atlantic plantation complex.
Rhode Island ships cleared for the Caribbean on an almost daily basis,
their holds laden with a cornucopia of local products – beef and
butter, hay and horses (Narragansett pacers were much prized by
Caribbean planters), candles, shoes, iron, barrel hoops and staves,
timber, tar, tobacco, and vast quantities of salt cod, the staple
protein source of West Indian slaves. (Rhode Islanders sometimes
referred to cod as “Jamaica fish,” reflecting a clear understanding
of the commodity’s destination.) Between the transatlantic slave trade
and the West Indian provisioning trade, it is hard to imagine any
eighteenth century Rhode Islander whose livelihood was not entangled,
directly or indirectly, with slavery.”
New England Weekly in Boston published in May 1732 an address from
Joseph Maxwell, clerk of the Jamaican Council, asking for more troops to
help them defend against rebellious Negroes. He stated that, “We
are, of late Years, deprived of the most Beneficial branch of our Trade,
the carrying of Negroes and Dry Goods to the Spanish coast [Assiento
his reasons, Dring’s activities demonstrated a change in his routine
away from other locales toward Jamaica, perhaps supplying fresh slaves
or to support the continual military effort against the Maroons.
The rebellion made keeping slaves on Jamaica a hazard, fearing that new
slaves would simply run off and join the Maroons. This strongly
affected slave traders and their business. Maxwell told the Board
of Trade that they “gave Employment to a considerable Number of
Shipping & People to cut and carry Logwood from thence,” which was
stolen by the Spanish routinely and that the French were undercutting
the price of slaves. The situation seemed desperate.
October of 1734, Dring left Newport bound again for Jamaica (Weekly
Rehearsal of Boston, Mass.). The Boston Post-Boy of October 27,
1735 told of his departure from Rhode Island three days earlier bound
again for Jamaica. New-England Weekly Journal of May 18, 1736
shows him arriving in Boston from Jamaica and leaving again on May 24th,
bound for Rhode Island (Boston Evening-Post). Any evidence of what
he carried in his hold would be extraordinarily helpful.
the 3rd of May, 1737, Azariah Dring was made a freeman for the province
of Rhode Island by the Proceedings of the General Assembly for Rhode
Island and the Providence Plantations. He was again outbound for
Jamaica in July 1737, according to the Boston Post-Boy and there,
undoubtedly discovered a truce had been arranged with the rebels.
In all, there were seven references for Dring going to or coming from
exclusively Jamaica for over four years. He did nothing else.
first deviation in Dring’s Jamaica pattern occurred in February 1738,
when the American Weekly Mercury recorded him as inbound from Honduras,
just after the 1737 treaty was signed with Jamaican Maroon rebels and
the military actions ceased, necessitating their withdrawal. By
this time, presumably, the British on Jamaica needed no further supplies
from Capt. Dring. Just as well, Dring’s possible hopes of
capturing cheap Maroon slaves to be sold also disappeared.
next year, in March 1738, Dring cleared out of Boston harbor again for
Rhode Island and then left there for the Leeward Islands in April
(Boston Gazette). Very few reports reveal his activity after this,
for no Dring is recorded as mariner until May 1746, leaving from New
Providence, the Bahamas. Only one other notation further, the
New-York Mercury records on December 10, 1753, “Novem. 12.
(Charlestown, South Carolina) Monday last put into this port a Schooner
bound from Winyah for Boston, Dring Master, that had been out three
Weeks, and had met with very bad Weather.”
Dring must have been worn out by his hapless arrival in Charlestown, for
there he stayed, dying three years later in Craven Precinct, in 1756 (SC
Colonial Probate 464). The year before this, his legal dispute
with James Baber occurred.
Carolina marriage records show a (Mrs.) Margaret “Dringat,” possibly
Azariah’s widow marrying on October 30, 1757 to a John Andrews Dehay.
Those records also show a Percival Dring (bachelor of Prince George
Parish, born about 1741-1744) marrying on March 18, 1761 to Elizabeth
Crook(s) (spinster of Prince George Parish) and an Elizabeth Dring
marrying May 19, 1764 to Charles Coulbourn.
Dring became a constable in charge of hunting down escaped slaves in
South Carolina. In 1765, he earned the most of ten such
constables, £56 17 06 for four separate accounts. No one else had
more than a single account. Two years later, the number of
constables increased and Percival Dring only made £14 15. By
January 2, 1771, Percival Dring, a carpenter by trade, had passed away
and his personal effects given to his next of kin, Margaret Dring.
This note is fascinating since his wife of ten years should have been
Elizabeth. Margaret should have been his mother. Indeed, it
may have happened this way.
could have passed away between 1761 and 1771, when her husband died.
This could easily be accounted for by childbirth, deadly for females in
the eighteenth century. It is quite likely that there were two
children born to Percival and Elizabeth, Percival Dring Jr. and Azariah.
Both of these men appear in the records of Currituck County, North
Carolina and on deed records associated with Hatteras Island, remarkably
as “free persons of color.” This enigma must be explained
somehow. For the children and grandchildren of men who fought
fervently against slaves to appear as “colored” individuals in the
census records, one or both must have married a black, mulatto, or as
the case may be best defined on Hatteras, an Indian… or, Elizabeth was
already an Indian. In that case, she may have found herself unable
to inherit her husband’s estate. She turns up again.
interesting will appeared in Abstracts of Currituck Co Wills 1760-1800:
Josiah Basnet, Oct. 9, 1782, Oct. 10, 1785, Will Bk 1, planter, son Alexander
Scarborough, Jr., Letisby Scarborough. Wit Azariah Dring, William
Dring… of witness age in 1782? He must have been at least
sixteen, which puts his birth at no later than 1762. Following
common naming practices of the time, the first male child is usually
named for the male’s father… in Percival of SC’s case, Azariah.
He very well could have been the first child born to Percival and
Elizabeth Dring. Josiah Basnett’s will is interesting enough
because it seems to reflect matrilineal naming patterns with Basnett’s
children all possessing the mother’s name of Scarborough, a possible
indication of Indian heritage. Still, they could be step-children,
but Alexander appears to later take the name of Basnett.
second Dring Hatteras occurrence is 1783, in which Shibboleth Dring (by
his father) sues Joseph Stow for “with force and arms he made an
assault upon the said Shibboleth Dring and did beat wound and evilly
treat so that his life was despaired of.” Who was the father?
Percival or Azariah? Unfortunately, none of the court records,
lasting until November 1784 tell his name. The only Dring later
recorded with children was Percival, but since the 1810 and 1820 census
recorded no Drings, the appearance of Azariah and his wife in 1830 at
age 50-60 (births 1770-1780) indicate no children. Drings do not
seem to last on Hatteras
first census for the United States in 1790 recorded a “Price” Dring
in Currituck County, on Hatteras Banks. There were four people in
his household, all “free persons of color” or FPC. In 1797,
Cornelius Howard sells to Percival Dring, two pieces of land that fell
to his wife, Elizabeth (Smith?) from the will of John Smith Senr.
One parcel is very close to the land the Elizabeth Dring sells to John
Clark in 1798, land on the sound bordering Isaac Brooks. This land
is east of Brooks point and west of Wahab’s new grant. Percival
sells 62.5 acres of this same land to Francis Farrow in 1799 while he
buys land from Willoughby Basnett (son of another FPC who became
“white” in 1800, Robert Basnett) who also obtained property through
the John Smith estate the same way as Reuben Burrus. (Currituck
County Deed Records).
in 1800, a “Prissilor Dring” is enumerated as a white man with a
white family of three male children, born between 1774-1784, four female
children born between 1784-1790, a wife the same age as “Prissilor”
and an older woman, born before 1755. He himself is born between
Crook(s) Dring is still alive in 1800 and living with her son and his
family on Hatteras Banks in an area known for its peculiar “free
persons of color” who suddenly become white by 1800. She is
probably the “Elizabeth” who sold John Clark the land in 1798.
in 1809, William Clark sells land bordering Francis Farrow to Percival
Dring in about the same area on the sound side of Hatteras Island.
Percival had already made his will by 1807, however, naming his brother
Azariah and his executors, wife, Amy and friend Willoughby Basnett.
Witnesses are Daniel Stow and Sarah Brooks.
indicated previously, 1810-1820 show no Drings enumerated, but 1830
shows only one, Azariah and his wife, both listed as “white” as
expected by 1830. The discrimination against anything other than
“white” became unusually strong in North Carolina, finally
culminating in the 1835 North Carolina Constitution that made everyone
but whites a second-class citizen. It was much more favorable to
be white than Indian or black. No other clues exist for what
became of the Drings of Hatteras except another Azariah Dring appears in
Caswell County, North Carolina, born between 1800-1810, a young lad
starting a new family with a wife, a young son and two little girls.
At least the name lived on.
story of Azariah Dring from Rhode Island made a startling turnaround
from a mariner who made a name for himself fighting black/Indian
Jamaican Maroons in the Caribbean, then crash landed in Charlestown,
South Carolina, and died there three years later. Then his son,
Percival obviously marries an Indian or black woman in 1761 and has two
sons who later come to Hatteras. But, if Elizabeth Crook(s) Dring
had been born black or mulatto, her chances of being recognized as
“white” in 1798 enough to sell land and in 1800 to be enumerated as
“white” are not good. She must have been Indian.
Combined with the family’s association with other families known to
follow the same change from 1790 when they were found as FPCs until
their miraculous transformation in 1800 to “white,” these Hatteras
Islanders may very well have collected on Hatteras for the sole purpose
of enjoying the anonymity. Hatteras must have become a home for
Native Americans that asked no questions. For many, Hatteras
remained a place inured by outside influence, possessing their own
unique colloquialisms/language, and preferring a high level of
independence. It still is like that today.
time to time, opportunities for public speaking arise for members.
Many groups are looking for speakers and are interested in
history and genealogy. We
have people speak at colleges and universities, national conferences,
local genealogy groups and schools.
you get the opportunity and you're interested, we have some support
items for you. We have
handouts and brochures that can be printed and distributed.
These items tell about the Lost Colony Research Group and also
provide a list of the colonist surnames, in case you don't have them all
committed to memory. I also
have a Powerpoint that can be used on a laptop, but you'll need the
laptop and access to a projector and know how to use them.
the opportunity arises and you're not comfortable doing the
presentation, but the group is willing to host a visiting speaker (and
pay for the trip), we also have a number of speakers who live in various
locations. Susi is located
in the west, Anne and Jen in North Carolina, I'm in Michigan and Andy is
England. There may be
others as well who are interested in or could give a presentation.
If the opportunity arises, just let us know and we'll do our best
to provide a solution.
Henry Berry Lowery
a descendant of the Lowery family, send three very interesting
documents. Her family
member has been DNA tested and their results are viewable in kit 184974
along with the associated genealogy on our Lost Colony website.
Her family is from Roane County, Tennessee, descendants of one
Aleck (Berry) Lowery.
familiar with the story of Henry Berry Lowery, Lumbee outlaw or hero,
depending on one's perspective, know that it was widely believed that he
escaped the men who relentlessly pursued him during the Civil War and
escaped to Tennessee. His
wife, Rhoda made several trips. It
was claimed that he changed his name.
Lowery family in Roane County, Tennessee has consistently said they
descend from Henry Berry Lowery, who changed his name to Aleck,
sometimes Alex. Two letters
written in the 1970s from then elderly "Grandma" to Shirley
Burris Lowery Cozo in North Carolina document some portion of the story.
I have added punctuation, but left the spelling untouched.
them graves of Grandpa and Grandma they are up above Lake City it to be
call Coal Creek it up near Cambell (sic) County line.
I been up there myself. There
in the graveyard a slate rock had on it wrote Will Lowery that was uncle
Will Lowery papa brother and the other was no marker grandma her name
Katie (could be Sadie) grandpa name Elexa and Aunt Bessie was papa
sister. Grandpa work in
Fratervill mine after the explosion in May 19, 1902.
He was a Baptis (sic) preacher.
He taught school but I don't no the place where he taught school. But this the place where he work in Fratervill mine round
about 19-1902 so I'll close for now if I find out anymore I let you
apparently discovered some additional information.
A second letter dated in 1972 was contributed as well.
Both of these letters are in Grandma's own handwriting, which, in
some places, is difficult to read.
father name Len (hard to read, maybe Lem) D. Lowery.
His father name was Berry Lowery from North Carolina.
But I don't know what part.
My father was raised in Tennessee.
My mother name Cara Blizzard before she married and her mother
name Frankie Ridener from Union County, Tennessee.
I don't know Grandma Ridner's mother name.
Grandma Lowery name was Katie Canight (hard to read - may not be
correct spelling). She was
from Scotland. I don't no
much about. She was a
little woman. My grandpa
left north Carolina came over to Tennessee before he married.
My father was raised in Tennessee.
My mother was in Tennessee.
The Blizzard owned a farm Anderson County.
The Rideners own a farm in Union County.
It been 100 years since grandpa Lowery left north Carolina.
He was almost Indian. His
father was chief over there I gess it been 175 years ago right clost.
We would get our claim but never did put in for it."
Berry Lowery was last seen in Robeson County in 1872, exactly 100 years
before "Grandma" wrote this letter about Aleck, Elexa or Alex
whose real name was Berry Lowery. Some
say that Henry Berry Lowery accidentally shot himself with one of his
many guns that he carried. Some
say that he was seen a number of years later, returning to Robeson
County for a funeral. Some say Rhoda, his wife in North Carolina, left and returned
many times. Surely, if this
was true, she would not be terribly tolerant of another wife, nor would
the second wife. On the
other hand, perhaps this is why Rhoda did return to North Carolina.
DNA of this Lowery line matches the DNA of the Robeson Lowery line.
This is most assuredly the same genetic family.
If Aleck (Berry) Lowery is not Henry Berry Lowery, who is he?
photo of Henry Berry Lowery taken in Robeson County, not contributed by
this family, is shown at right.
asked Sandy if she had a photograph of her grandfather, Aleck.
She said that he was very careful never to be in photographs, and
there are no photographs of him in the family.
Just before he died, he told the family who he was, but he
stressed that they could never tell anyone.
Sandy's father was in his 70s before he told
He kept his promise to his father.
The one still living uncle will not discuss this topic at all.
and "Grandma's" granddaughter, Shirley, has spent years
tracking down tidbits. So far, everything Grandma said in the letters and the
information Sandy's father, Grandma's brother, told her, has turned out
to be true. Grandma is
Sandy's "Aunt Nelle."
recently took a trip to Tennessee to find the grave of her grandfather
Aleck. The cemetery is
horribly overgrown and she spent the day " chopping
through thorns and every kind of poison vine known to mankind."
Just like Grandma said she would find, the slate rock for Will
Lowery was found, and near it a stone for one Bessie Young, a child.
Nearby were fieldstones, one of which would be Aleck and his wife
stone says W. H. Lowery - Born March? 25, 1874 - Died September 22,
1893. This would be the son
of Henry Berry, aka Aleck, Lowery.
second item contributed by Sandy was a letter to Shirley from one Earl
Lowery who lived in Des Moines, Iowa in 1981.
Here, in extracted form, is what Earl's letter contained:
Berry Lowry was born in July of 1848 in Robeson County, NC, the son of
Allen Lowry and Mary Cumbo. He
was the 10th son and 14th child of this couple.
Mary was Portuguese - born near Charleston, SC - the daughter of
Stephen Combo a veteran of the War of 1812.
Allen Lowry was the son of William Lowry, a veteran of the
Revolutionary War. William's father came to NC about 1738 - and his wife was
Priscilla Berry, a great-grand-daughter of Henry Berry listed in the
roster of White's lost Colony - 1587.
This is how Henry Berry Lowry got his name.
Priscilla was 1/2 Tuscarora Indian.
Her husband James, a plantation owner, died in 1811.
His brother John signed the Cherokee treaty in 1806 - but he was
an interpreter, not an Indian.
the Civil War started the Allen Lowry family was notified by the draft
board that since they were of Indian descent they could not join the
Confederate Army - but would be drafted as slave labor.
The Lowrys notified the board that none would go except as
soldiers. This and other factors resulted in the court-martial and
shooting of Allen Lowry and his son, William (1865).
Hence, Henry Berry Lowry, then 16, came forth and disposed of all
concerned in this killing. He
left North Carolina in Feb. 1872. At
25 he had accomplished his mission, was married (Rhoda Strong) and had
three children. With a
$12,000 reward on his head he and all his family agreed he should take
off. My book, complete but not published, stops here - because I
have been trying for 50 years to determine where he went.
1845 the oldest boy in the Allen Berry family, Murdick Lowry - because
children having Indian blood had been kicked out of the schools -
Murdick ran away with a local Scotch girl, a classmate - and went to
Lafayette, Tennessee. They had a large family.
We know that Henry Berry was not killed, but left Robeson County
- we have no information that he took a wife with him. You could well be a descendant of either of these boys.
always had a feeling Henry Berry may have moved near his brother Murdick.
have the Lowery genealogy of the Lowrys since 1666 - when Judge Lowry
arrived in Virginia. Also
the will of James Lowry and Priscilla Berry - he died in 1811 at 100
third item contributed by Sandy is the following story, which has been
transcribed from the original typewritten version provided by the
family, with the following commentary:
was a magazine article with a story that detailed a story about Henry
Berry Lowery and his tie to the Lost Colony.
This magazine article has been in the family for years.
It has been around since before there were copying machines.
My cousin Rosa typed copies for the family.
There are some type-o's but the article survives.
No one knows the name of the magazine or the date or I would try
to find it in the Library of Congress."
Sheppard has graciously transcribed this article, "Ghost Warrior of
the Lost Colony," for our newsletter.
Our thanks to the family for the generous contribution and to
Jennifer for the transcription. You can contact Sandy for further information at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ghost Warrior of the Lost Colony
Allen Lowrie had seen death marching through the door when the men with
the guns entered his tavern. Now the aged chief of the Croatans stood
under a pine tree, facing a firing squad as camly (sic) as his legendary
ancestor, Walter Raleigh, had once bowed his head on the chopping block
in far off England.
old man took a deep breath of the autumn wind blowing in from Cape Fear.
He met eye to eye, the cold, hard stare of Brant Harris, captain of
these raiders. If white men, North and South, were killing each other as
Allan Lowrie killed pigeons, what could peaceful Indians expect while
roving bands of each action burned cabins and trampled down crops?
eyes turned in a last farewell toward the boy who lay gagged and bound a
few feet away. The raiders had found it unnecessary to bind the sick old
chief of the Croatans, still suffering from that stroke of apoplexy
which had come when he learned that his favorite nephews, Harve and
Charlie Lowrie, had been shot by this slave trader and guerrilla
a cooked turkey already,” Harris laughed mockingly. “But tie up the
kid and gag him. Guess the folks in North Carolina are plumb tired of
hearing that cock-and-bull story about their springing from Walter
Raleigh and the Lost Colony over on Roanoke Island. That’s as likely
as their tale of not knowing anything about the money and jewelry we
just dug up in their corn field.”
Harris addressed the old chief: “You and that kid have one chance.
We’ve come to arrest your son Henry Berry Lowrie, for thief and
concealment of stolen property, for persuading the Croatans to run off
into the swamp after they had been conscripted to work on the
fortifications at Fort Fisher. If you tell us where Henry and the
runaways are hiding out, we won’t harm you or the boy. If you don’t
there will be two less thieves to make trouble for the good citizens of
Lowrie, the patriarch, answered firmly: “The Croatans do not steal.
The Croatans will work if they are paid wages like other men. But we
will not shovel sand for a piece of cornbread. We will not march like
slaves for a man who killed two of our sons when he was taking them to
the fort – after getting them drunk and having them to sign away their
land to him.”
the goods of our white brothers are found in our fields, them evil white
men have put them there. If you seek Henry Berry Lowrie, go to the
swamps and ask the owls.”
face turned purple. “Come on, boys! Bring ‘em out,” he snarled.
old man and the lad watched calmly while Harris’s sullen slave dug a
wide, shallow grave. Both shook their heads when Harris offered them one
last chance to save their lives by revealing the hiding place of the
runaways. The rifiles (sic) barked out a volley as Harris counted three,
and Allen Lowrie spun around from the blast and dropped to the ground
like a partridge. The boy struggled to free himself from the binding
ropes and was still floundering when one of the men discharged a pistel
(sic) into his head. William Lowrie lay as still as his father.
‘em in the hole,” Harris ordered curtly. The bodys (sic) were
dragged to the grave and quickly spaded over with sand by the grimfaced
earth had been packed down firm and hard when a fusillade of shots rand
(sic) out from the pine forest. A guerrilla howled with pain as a heavy
slug tore through his shoulder. A bullet whizzed by Harris’s (sic)
head landing in the trunk of a tree.
your horses, men!” Harris yelled. “Don’t try to fight the redbellies
to his mount Harris bent low and spurred the animal to a gallop, his
satellites close behind him.
rivulets of blood were drying on the ground when six dark skinned,
muscular youths, wearing rough jeans and carring (sic) shotguns on their
shoulders, stepped from the thicket. They were followed by a swathy,
middle-aged woman and a slim girl of 16 with delicate brown features.
When the woman saw the grave, she bent over it whimpering and moaning.
But the tallest of the young men moved in a quick, catlike spring and
caught the girl by the hand when she started forward:
(sic) no use, Rhoda,” he said harshly. “Only killing’s going to
help us now. Ma slipped out the back door and started running to the
swamp when these butchers turned in from the road to our place. Horses
are no good back there, and we got here too late on foot. But we’ll
get every damn’ last one of ‘em.”
he turned and spoke to the men: “You fellows scatter. Go to the house
of every Croatan; tell them that we hold the funeral for Father and
William in the swamp tonight. Tell them that Henry Berry Lowrie said to
night, the corpes (sic) of
the two Indians had been dug up and carried in canoes to the secret
burial place of the Croatans on a remote island in the Back Swamp.
Croatan tradition has it that here Virginia Dare, the first white child born in America was
buried as an old woman – while the pioneer settlers still wondered
what had become of her and [the] rest of the English colony which Walter
Raleigh had planted on Roanoke Island in that first century after the
discovery of America.
giant alligators looked on from the murky waters, the Indians assembled
by the light of flaming pine torches to honor their dead. Dead rabbits
and quails were placed in the muddy grave before it was filled with the
damp loam (sic). For the souls of Allen and William Lowrie must have the
food of warriors on their long journey.
old medicine man said a prayer in a strange, weird tongue remembered by
only a few venerable Croatans. Then the elders of the tribe stepped in
the middle of the circle, and beckoned to Henry Berry Lowrie.
is the law of our people that our chief
must always be one with the blood of the great chief, Raleigh,”
the old medicine man said in English. “You will lead us against the
white men who shed our blood when we were always the friends of the
white men. The son of Walter Raleigh and Allen Lowrie will not fail in
this – for the law of our people spare not even the chief.
sware (sic) that will not fail my people,” the youth answered.
Lowrie spoke, a drum began throbbing out the ancient war song of the
Croatan. other (sic) tribes
had retreated before that song when, time after time, the Croatan had
allied themselfes (sic) with
the whites in the fierce Indian wars of the Atlantic Coast. But its
pent-up blood lust had never been unloose (sic) against the whites –
not once in those long generations since the first Scotch settlers of
eastern North Carolina had thankfully discovered this strange tribe
living in comfortable houses along the banks of the Lumber River
speaking a strange old Englishdialect, (sic) and bearing many surnames
of people in the Lost Colony.
Lowrie chief, claiming descent from the son of Walter Raleigh and
Elizabeth Throckmorton, lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth of England,
had sent his young men to help the settlers clear land for homesteads.
He welcomb (sic) the Scotchmen to his table with: “Did not our white
fathers leave Roanoke to dwell with our red fathers in Croatan when
there was no food for their mouths?
the children of our white fathers and our red fathers moved west from
Croatan, they build (sic) this Lowrie Road so that white men might find
us. You will stay with us and we will learn from you. For our white
fathers also talked in books.”
Lowrie had armed his men and sent them to serve as scouts for the
Revolutionary partisans of the SwampFox, (sic) General Marion, in that
long campaign which finally drove the British out of the strategic
Carolinas. And the present Lowrie chief – an 18 year-old boy named for
the Henry Berry who had brought Raleigh’s son secretly to Roanoke –
was leading the tribe against white men in a bitter conflict that was to
rock North Carolina for the ensuing ten years. This Indian war was even
more remarkable because those who waged it claimed proudly to be the
lineal descendants of the very first white settlers in the country.
wise old olders (sic) had picked Henry Berry Lowrie to be the next
chief, when at the age of 15, he had gone to the swamp and killed a
black bear with a bowe (sic) knife, Out for bigger gamenow, (sic) he was
as merciless toward his first victim, James P. Barnes, on that morning
of December 21, 1864, as he was toward any rabbit which he had ever
caught in a deadfall.
had entered the forest to cut down a pine tree for a Christmas party to
be held in his home cummunity (sic) of Clay Valley. A tiny hamlet, off
the main road.
Valley only lay a few miles from the Croatan district of wood and swamp
known as Scuffletown (sic).
Lowrie said, “I’ll (sic) done a lot of squirrel hunting with you,
and never harmed you. But you let Brant Harris talk you into going before the grand
jury and accusing the Croatans of taking your cattle. That was the
excuse the grand jury wanted for turing (sic) loose those who shot mu
(sic) father and brother. I’m sending you to hell for it.”
Indians aimed their weapons. Barnes charged desperately with his ax and
went down in a blinding crash. Rhoda Strong squealed with delight as the
white man dropped to the ground.
that night, word came to Brant Harris in Lumberton that Barnes had been
found dead in the woods by his wife. The guerrillas, quickly mobilized,
saddled their horses, and rode towards Scuffletown (sic) eight miles
(sic) the same night, Jarman and Pete Lowrie left their cabins for a
coon hunt. They had not returned to their homes at noon of the next day.
a whole week, searching parties of the Croatans combed the district for
their missing kin. Then Henry Berry Lowrie, acting on a hunch, paddled
his canoe into moccasin-infested Bear Swamp. As he rounded a bend, he
found his way blocked by the bloated corpses of his cusins (sic).
tied his canoe to a cypress tree. Then he swam into the water to recover
the bodies of the two Indians, depositing them in succession on a little
piece of solid ground surrounding the trees. His clothing dripping with
slime and mud, Lowrie examined the corpses minutely. Deep gashes and
bruises on the swollen bodys (sic) told the story to the keen eyes of
the young chief. The pair had been attacked, over-powered after a fierce
fight, and then thrown to the catfish.
the next two weeks, Brant Harris swaggered around Lumberton boasting:
“I’ve lopped off two more rotted apples and these won’t be the
last.” He failed to take account the quick, burning wrath of Henry
gaily whistled a popular tune on that afternoon of January 16, 1865,
when he rode down the Lowrie Road through Scuffletown (sic) at the head
of his band. In his mind, the guerrilla figured out the profit that he
would make on the barrels of turpentine that would be waiting for him in
Florence, S. C., just over the state line from Robeson County. Harris
turned around to look at the Confederate deserter whom they had captured
that morning. He would bring a bounty of $300.00 after he had been
delivered to the authorities in Florence. The deserter sat on a horse
with his hands cuffed, and by his side rode the sullen Negro on the
of the men muttered fearfully when a low piercing cry was heard from the
woods adjoining the road. “Nothing to get uneasy about, men” Harris
called. “Just a bobcat looking for a rabbit. Them redbellies ain’t
words froze on the guerrilla’s lips as that low, mournful cry mounted
into a chorus of savage yells. Indians on hourseback (sic) swarmed from
all sides of the thicket, shooting at Harris’s (sic) detachment. Four
men dropped bleeding from their saddles in the first two minutes of that
surprise attack. Standing on a stump a few feet from the battle, Rhoda
Strong yelled encouragement to her tribesmen. The girl whooped with joy
when another guerrilla was knocked off his horse by Calvin Oxendine to
be tramped to death under hooves below. Harris saw Henry Berry Lowrie
changing toward him and turned his hourse (sic) in the opposit (sic)
the fighting, the deserter had managed to keep his balance in spite of
the handcuffs and the bullets whizzing (sic) around him. As Harris
passed, the prisoner rose in his stirrups and brought the iron bracelets
squarely down on the head of the guerrilla chief. Harris swayed
drunkenly in his saddle, but was caught by his Negro who jumped nimbly
from his mule to his masters (sic) horse.
don’t die dat easy, Harris, he hissed. Then he called to Lowrie:
“Here he is, Injun. I guess he’s yo’ man.”
that time the surviving guerrillas were racing desperately toward
Lumberton. The Indians gathered around the unconscious Harris, who was
slumped over his hourse (sic) and held firmly by the slave. “Not yet,
men.” Henry Berry Lowrie said when several of them drew long knives
from their belts. “He’s got to know that he’s going to die.”
he turned to the deserter ditting (sic) silently on his horse.
“Thanks,” he said. “We’ve got a blacksmith who’ll file those
things off of you. You can
stay with us as long as you please.”
like helping a man catch a snake,” the deserter laughed, “If you
Croatans will take me, I’ll be glad to throw in with you. Name’s
Zack McLaughlin. Skipped out of the Confederate Army a while back, and
got caught by this nan-herder (sic) while I was taking a nap in the
woods. Looks like to me that the colored fellow deserves some thanks,
Negro opened his mouth to speak abruptly: “Don’t want no thanks,
Injun,” he said doggedly.
“Jest wants [to] be free. My old master cobbled shoes in Charleston
and I wurk’ (sic) round de shop wid (sic) him. When he go off to the
war, they sell me to Harris. He beat me, and made me bury de chest in yo’
pa’s field. Do white folks call me Shoemaker John.”
looked at the Negro and replied: “The Croatans have no slaves. But
you’d be caught by sundown if you struck out now. You’ll stay and
make shoes for us. When the war is over, you can do as you please.”
young chief turned to his band, We’re wasting time here, men.” he
said. “I’m leaving George Applewhite and Boss Strong to clear the
road of these dead polecats. Throw’em (sic) in a hole and cover ‘em
mercy don’t shoot me Henry Berry,” he had begged,. I’ll give you
every dime I’ve got and leave Robeson County I didn’t want to shoot
your Dad and brother my men made me do it.” Lawrie spat deliberately
in the gurrillas (sic) face “Shutup (sic) Harris,” he ordered,
“You’re leaving Robeson County all right but your next stops going
to be hell.
winter sun was setting over the pine thicket when the captain faced the
assembled Croatans in that last moment Harris could no longer beg for
his life Henry Berry bound his mouth with a blue bandana then said to
the Indians “This is a job for Lawrie Tom you and Steve step up here
with me.” Henry Berrys’s (sic) two remaining brothers came forward
with guns cocked the gurrillas (sic) eyes were sick with terror as the
Lawrie brothers aimed their Pistols and fired his big frame quivered for
a moment when the bullets tore through his chest his corpse was then cut
down and dragged to the pit where Allen and William Lawrie had
arigionally (sic) been
buried, “I’ve kept it open for him Lawrie said, “Fill it up
tribe of Indians with whom some of the “Lost Colony” left on the
shore of Virginia by Raleigh in 1687, are supposed to have intermarried
a group of Indians in Robeson County
North Carolina, claim descent from these and are called Croatan.
Dare born 1587, the first white child of English parents to be born in
America. She was the Daughter of Ananias and Ellinor Dare, members of
Sir Walter Raleigh’s ill-Fated Colony
which settled on Roanoke Island on the North Carolina Coast. Since no trace
remained of the colony when the relief expedition reached Roanoke in
1591 the child [‘s] fate is unknown.
Lost Colony Presentation in Tyrrell County
Tyrrell County Genealogical and Historical Society will hold its August
meeting on August 28, 2011
at 2:30 the Senior Citizens Center located in the Columbia Medical
Center. The address is 406 Bridge Street, Columbia, NC 27925.
(Directions are included at the end of this article.) The Society meets at 2:30 pm, the 4th Sunday of the month,
except for November and December.
Sheppard, a Professional Genealogist with the Lost Colony Research
Genealogy~DNA~Archealogy will be the guest speaker.
Ms Sheppard will talk about the Lost Colony Research Group’s
ongoing search for descendants of the so called “Lost Colony”. She
will share information about the group’s research, DNA testing and the
archaeology digs taking place on Hatteras Island. A DVD of the April
2010 dig in Buxton will
also be shown. In addition she will have conch shells (found in one of
the middens) on display at the meeting.
DVD includes interviews with Roberta Estes, Administrator for the Lost
Colony Research Group showing the types of artifacts found during that
particular dig. Also included is a spot with Anne Poole, Principal
Researcher for the Group, explaining native middens, their content; and
information on how the Indians would have used these items in their
public is cordially invited to attend this meeting and all
“drop-ins” are welcome.
to the Tyrrell County Genealogical and Historical Society’s meeting -
Route 64 to Columbia. At the stoplight, turn left onto Broad
Street (if coming from the Outer Banks, you would turn right). Continue
on past Main Street, to Bridge Street and turn right onto Bridge Street.
(406 Bridge St., Columbia, NC 27925). Then turn left into the parking
lot - this is the Columbia Medical Center Complex. Please Note:
the parking lot is one-way.
Lost Colony Research Group is unique in a number of ways, but as a
newsletter editor, it's particularly challenging for me to include a
wide variety of historical items, general interest items, research work,
and make the entire melange interesting for everyone.
Don't misunderstand, I love writing and assembling the
newsletter, but with such a wide scope, sometimes it's hard to include
I had noticed that Nancy Frey's work has been under-represented.
Nancy and I discussed this, and came to the conclusion that it's
because she doesn't work as part of a tag team as many of us do over on
this side of the pond, working in North Carolina records.
Many of us, me included, just aren't aware of the work she is
doing on our behalf. She
does collaborate to some extent with Andy Powell who of course is our
historian in Bideford, but then again, history and genealogy, while
connected, aren't exactly the same thing.
So sometimes they overlap and sometimes they don't.
Their focus and goals are somewhat different as well.
sent me a CD of the work she's been doing and I was fairly stunned.
Almost nothing has been published, because she isn't
"finished" yet, but the CD was chocked full of interesting
information. I understand
Nancy's hesitation to publish information about the colonists or their
families before she's sure they ARE the colonists families, and I surely
do appreciate that attention to accuracy and detail....but there is much
that can be published that would be vastly interesting to our readers.
hoping that you'll find something of interest and relevant perhaps to
your family surnames.
you'll discover a new source. Maybe
you'll get an idea that will bloom into an answer, for you or for us.
The possibilities are endless.
So I hope you'll welcome a new feature that we'll be offering
The Parish of St. Clement Danes in the City of Westminster
By Nancy Frey
Annanias Dare married Elinor
Whyte 24 Jun 1583 at the parish Church of St. Clement Danes,
City of Westminster was in the County of Middlesex and outside the Walls
of the City of London. Westminster
is on the north-west side of the Thames River adjacent to the City of
London and across the river from Lambeth.
Note the North orientation on the map below.
Westminster 1593 from Norden’s Survey
St. Clement to whom the Church was dedicated is supposed to have been
that St. Clement, a disciple of St. Peter, who was the Christian Bishop
of Rome about AD 73 and who suffered martyrdom AD 100.
The word “Danes” is said to have been added because in the
days of Canute and his immediate successors, it belonged to the Danes
who formed a colony in this neighbourhood.
Many of their nobles were buried within its vaults, one of whom
was Harold, the eldest son and successor of Canute.
original church was built c. 1002 AD and was repaired in 1608 and 1633.
The marriage of Ananias DARE & Eleanor WHITE would have taken
place in the original church. The present building housing the church of St. Clement Danes
was built in 1680 when the old church was knocked down.
Protestant Parish Records begin in 1558.
International Genealogical Index of the Latter Day Saints
“Some Account of the Parish of Saint Clement Danes (Westminster) Past
& Present” by John Diprose published 1868
You're Invited to
Virginia Dare's Birthday Party
again, we're celebrating the birthday of little Virginia Dare, born on
Roanoke Island on August 18th, 1587, the first European child to be born
in what is now America. Virginia
is 424 years old this year!
year, the National Park Service hosts a birthday party and celebration
for Virginia at the Fort Raleigh National Historic site.
This includes the Park area near the Waterside Theater where the
plays are held and the Fort area as well as the Elizabethan Gardens,
located nearby but separately. In
the past, we've been near the Waterside Theater, but this year, we're in
a new location at the Elizabethan Gardens.
for the great news - entrance to the Elizabethan Gardens is free that
day in celebration of Virginia's birthday.
Taylor and Baylus Brooks will be representing our group.
They will have the list of colonists, info about our projects,
and some of the archaeological artifacts found in recent digs on
Faire includes free activities, music, games and fun for all.
Actors from the play mingle with the crown, in costume of course,
during the day. Be sure to
stay for the special play in the evening.
Awards are presented to cast members and a real baby Virginia
Dare is included in the case, just for this one special evening.
This is truly an event to remember.
and Dawn are looking forward to meeting and greeting people.
Hopefully you can be one of them.
We welcome any of our members not just as visitors, but as
volunteers as well. If you're coming to visit and can spend an hour or two, plan
on joining Dawn and Baylus at the table.
Just let us know so we're expecting you.
address for the Elizabethan Gardens is 1411 National Park Drive, Manteo,
NC and we'll be there from about 9 to about 3.
Lost Colony website includes more than 8000 pages of research,
all free, at
Project on Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lost-Colony-of-Roanoke-DNA-
- thanks to Janet Crain for this
Blog - http://the-lost-colony.blogspot.com/
- If you don't subscribe to our blog...now's a great time to do
that...just click on over and sign up so you don't miss anything!!
Thanks to Janet Crain and Penny Ferguson for our wonderful blog.
Website - http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~molcgdrg/
- Nelda adds to information to our website almost daily.
Have you checked your surnames lately to see what is new?
Please contribute something for your surnames, or a county of
interest. Thanks to Nelda Percival for her untiring work on our
to Andy Powell for setting this up.
DNA projects at Family Tree DNA:
Colony Yline - (paternal surname) - http://www.familytreedna.com/public/LostColonyYDNA/default.aspx
Colony Mitochondrial - (maternal line) - http://www.familytreedna.com/project-join-request.aspx?group=LostColonymtDNA
Colony Family Finder - (autosomal) http://www.familytreedna.com/public/LostColonyFamilyFinder/default.aspx
Island Fathers DNA project at http://www.familytreedna.com/public/HatterasFathers/default.aspx
Island Mothers DNA project at
Island Family Finder project at
Island Genealogy Society at http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=245433063719&ref=ts