1788

“By the influence and assistance of the wife of Durant, a French trader, Mrs. Brown contrived to escape to the residence of McGillevray, the Head-man of the Creek nation, who generously ransomed her fro her savage owner.”–The Annals of Tennessee to the End of the Eighteenth Century by J.G.M. Ramsey, page 516

One of the Demonbreun people asked me about the passage and I’m still mulling it over. Brown and some of her children (her husband and some of the others having been killed) were captured by the mixed Cherokee/Creek group fighting white settlement. She went to the Creeks. Her son went to the Cherokees. More on him in a second. Let’s just ponder this “wife of Durant.”

There was no French guy named Durant other than our friend, Joseph. This took place in 1788, so she wasn’t the wife of Joseph yet. But this has to be Elizabeth, or so the Demonbreuns have convinced me. It does bring up a question of how a lone woman could travel to the Creek nation and have influence. No wonder there are family stories of her being Native American.

Anyway, the Browns.

“‘Price went to Pensacola for goods, and left Richard Findelston and two negro men with Mrs. Glass to take care of his stock. One day, while Findelston was away from home, a large Creek Indian came by and seized Mrs. Glass’s sucking child; the negro dared not interfere, for the Indian would have killed him instantly.”–Joseph Brown, Mrs. Brown’s son, from Ramsey’s book, page 514.

 

I want to connect a dot here, but I’m not sure what dot to connect. Maybe it’s nothing that these two folks, who would come to be so connected to Joseph show up in this story both connected to the Browns.