Battle of the Olentangy

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Crawford, William.jpg

William Crawford

In 1782, William Crawford led a combined force of Virginians and Pennsylvanians in an attack on Seneca-Cayuga natives and Delaware natives along the Sandusky River. David Williamson and a number of the men who had participated in the Gnadenhutten Massacre of Delaware natives were among his troops. Crawford and his men held off the natives and their British allies at the Battle of the Sandusky on June 4-5, 1782. The Americans lost approximately fifty men, including Colonel Crawford, who was taken prisoner after the battle. The following day, at the Battle of the Olentangy, the American force was divided, and the natives succeeded in driving the Americans from the area. In revenge for the Gnadenhutten Massacre, the natives tortured Crawford before burning him at the stake. Another prisoner, Dr. John Knight, managed to escape and spread the news of Crawford's terrible death. According to Knight's account, Simon Girty had watched the torture. Girty refused to give in to Crawford's pleas to shoot him, knowing it might mean his own death if he did. David Williamson was not captured and returned to Pennsylvania unharmed.

See Also


  1. Hurt, R. Douglas. The Ohio Frontier: Crucible of the Old Northwest, 1720-1830. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1996.