Relief of Ft Shuyler
Narrative of Colonel Marinus Willett,
German Flatts,August 11, 1777
About eleven o'clock [Wednesday, August 6th] three men got into the fort [Schuyler], who brought a letter from General Harkaman of the Tryon County militia, advising us that he was at Eriska (8 miles off) with part of | his militia, and proposed to force his way to the fort for our relief. In order to render him what service we could in his march, it was agreed that I should make a sally from the fort with 250 men, consisting of one half Gansevoort's, one half Massachusetts ditto, and one field piece (an iron three-pounder).
. . . Nothing could be more fortunate than this enterprise. We totally routed two of the enemy's encampments, destroyed all the provisions that were in them, brought off upwards of 50 brass kettles and more than 1oo blankets (two articles which were much needed), with a quantity of muskets, tomahawks, spears, ammunition, clothing, deerskins, a variety of Indian affairs and 5 colors.... The Indians took chiefly to the woods, the rest of the troops then at their posts to the river.... I was happy in preventing the men from scalping even the Indians, being desirous, if possible, to teach even the savages humanity; but the men were much better employed, and kept in excellent order....
From these prisoners [some Oneida Indians] we received the first accounts of General Harkaman's militia being ambushed on their march, and of a severe battle they had with them about two hours before, which gave reason to think they had for the present given up their design of marching to the fort.