In Which I Slightly Modify My Finnelson Guess

March 1, 1792 Dragging Canoe, the great Cherokee leader dies. John Watts takes over as leader for the Lower Cherokees. The September 1792 attacks were Watts’ first big direct action as leader and there’s evidence that the reason Bloody Fellow spoke against it was not that he was merely thinking that the Americans were too powerful (though he may have been looking to forge new trading opportunities with them), but he thought that the plan was too ill-conceived, that it was happening too quickly, just because the young men were eager to prove themselves in battle. He thought the USians settled along the Cumberland expected an attack.

So, I think Finnelson could have been somewhat ill-at-ease about the Creek. I think he also must have trusted Bloody Fellow’s interpretation that they were rushing into battle and been uncertain about John Watts’ leadership.

And here’s the other thing. If Finnelson had a wife and child at Running Water, he probably wanted to prevent the U.S. troops from attacking that town in a way that would kill his family.

In other words, it may not have been one big thing, but a bunch of little things that made him increasingly uneasy about the attack.

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