24" x 36" oil
Risking everything, desperate soldiers often attempted to escape harsh discipline or unbearable circumstances by deserting. There are numerous accounts recorded from the 18th Century. To help capture these run-aways, the use of allied Indians began in earnest after 1760. One of the most successful captures involved the return of 14 men taken by the Seneca in 1762 (Johnson Papers Vol.3 pg 958). Some of these deserters were of the 60th Royal American Regiment -- as seen in this painting -- and were returned to their commandant at Fort Niagara. Other instances are mentioned in the Amherst Papers, as well as this account from the Bouquet Papers, Vol. 5 pg 698.
"Lieut. Carre to Col. Bouquet -- Venango -- Aug. 15 1761
I have sent under the care of the bearer, Corporal Roller, Phillip Dill of Major Walters Company, who deserted from Niagara the 12th of July & was brought here by an Indian who took him up near Custaloga's; as the Indian insisted much to have his reward in Rum, I promised that he should have 2 1/2 gallons at Fort Pitt (where he will be in a few days) in case you approve of it. The Deserter says there was another man came off with him, whom he left in the woods near Presqu'isle so weak that he could not proceed & that he advised him to deliver himself up at Presqu'isle..."
Note: Phillip Dill was in Major Walters Company of the 60th Royal American.
Reproductions of this painting were produced.