20 October 2011

Indian Captives Who Were Early Residents of St. Marys, Ohio

 We were camped in Wapakoneta, Ohio, last week when I read that "Girty's Town" was nearby in present day St. Marys.  One of the Girty brothers participated in the capture of my ancestor, William Roark in a later known as Lochry's Defeat.

This week, while researching a seemingly unrelated story, I discovered that Shawnee captive George Ash also lived in St. Marys for a short time (the Girty brothers were also kidnapped by Native Americans).  George Ash was the step-brother of Alice (Anderson) Evans; Alice's daughter, Nancy Evans (my ancestress), was William Roark's daughter-in-law.

From Traits of Indian Character... (narrative by George Ash):

Photo By Jim Palm
 Erected here in 1795 by General "Mad" Anthony Wayne, probably after the signing of the Greenville Treaty, on lands ceded by the Indians, this area was also the site of the signing of the Treaty of St. Marys in 1818 (the Indian campsites being to the south and west of this spot).  Located here prior to, and a little south of the fort, was the dugout and cabin of James Girty, of the notorious "Girty Brothers," giving rise to the area's original name, "Girty's Town."
Erected in 1974 by The Auglaize County Historical Society

 From North American Forts:

Fort St. Mary's
(1784, 1794 - 1796, 1813 - 1818), St. Marys
Headquarters and supply depot for Generals Harmar, Wayne, and Harrison at various times. The 1813 rebuild was northwest of the 1794 fort. The Treaty of St. Mary's was signed here in September 1817.

St. Mary's Trading Post
(1760), near St. Marys
A French trading post located on the St. Mary's River two miles upstream of town.

Girty's Town Trading Post (2)
(1782 - 1784), St. Marys
A British (Tory) trading post that was burned down. Built by James Girty, Simon's brother.

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