Black Powder A Dark and Bloody Ground
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Heave!” roared Captain Johnson as he and five men from the 60th royal americans put their shoulders to the back of the transport wagon and once again tried to shove it out of the muddy rut it had become stuck in.this time the wagon slowly rocked clear and a small cheer erupted from the exhausted men.“right lads,collect up your things and fall in,” said Johnson, with a smile. He looked skyward at the rain falling through the canopy of branches, soaking the men and horses of his small column.
He and his company of regulars had been detailed to escort these wagons from Fort
edward through the forest to FortWilliam Henry, but his mission had been beset with problems from the start.the wagons had been late, the foodstuffs spoiled and now the rain had turned this road into a muddy mess.the ‘road’ was in truth only a hunter’s trail which had been widened by cutting down the trees on either side to allow the wagons to pass unimpeded. now, as evening drew on, Johnson faced the prospect of completing his journey at night. Glancing off into the dark woods on either side of the trail, the thought made him shudder.
Just then he heard the voice of his Sergeant Major toward the front of the column.
What was it now? Johnson started forward, squinting through the heavy rain, as the
wagons rolled to a halt. Just then, out of the corner of his eye he thought he saw
something move in the trees.
He glanced around.
A figure was crouching behind a fallen log. Suddenly, realisation dawned.“ambush!”
Just as Johnson raised his voice in alarm the firing began on both sides of the trail, accompanied by the hideous war whoops of the attacking indians….
"We have given you a fine land, brother, but you will l find it under a cloud – a dark and bloody ground."
Cherokee Chief Dragging Canoe