The Virginia Gazette

Today in the 1770s: December 17

WILLIAMSBURG, In Council, December 17, 1776.
Captain Nathaniel Guest having presented a memorial to the Governour, lamenting the suspicions which he fell under, with several of his countrymen, as having acted an inimical part against America, by aiding and abetting the Cherokees in their late hostile conduct, and desiring his Excellency and the Council would make inquiry into the same, as a preparatory step either to his acquittal or consign punishment, the Board accordingly considered the several depositions transmitted by col. Christian to the Governour, and which had been laid before the General Assembly, and moreover examined col. William Russell, major Evan Shelby, and Isaac Thomas, upon oath, and, upon the whole matter, are of opinion, that capt. Guest is a friend to his country, and was acting in that character most effectually when he was suspected of encouraging the Indians hostilities. (A copy) ARCHIBALD BLAIR, clerk.

Virginia Gazette (Purdie) December 20, 1776

About this entry:

Nathaniel Guest or Gist (1733–1796) was the son of frontiersman and surveyor Christopher Gist with whom George Washington explored the west in 1753. Nathaniel and George were close in age and both were survivors of the ill-fated Braddock expedition during the French and Indian War. Nathaniel was a frontiersman like his father and lived much among the Indians which is possibly why he was under suspicion by Governor Patrick Henry. A few months after this, in early 1777, George Washington made him a colonel of a continental regiment. On 12 May 1780 Gist was taken prisoner during the British attack on Charleston, South Carolina. Gist settled in Kentucky in 1793.

Sources: Bailey, Papers of GW (UVA, Digital Edition)

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