24" x 34" oil
Peaceful existence with it's native population was tenuous at best. Although loyalties and friendships did exist between the encroaching Europeans and some of the original inhabitants. However, there were always those allied to other interests waiting to do harm.
No individual or group was exempt; nor were cabins, settlements or even forts, from their sudden harassment or deadly force. Small groups, or at times large hostile parties, took advantage of hit and run tactics, striking with surprise. An ambush of the unsuspecting often resulted in quick plunder, hostages taken, and a bloody aftermath.
If enough men from a nearby fort or settlement could be gathered before their trail cooled, the raiders would be tracked. Many times these pursuits terminated in another ambush, by either side, and either side could be successful. Many times also the tracking became too difficult; the trail was lost. John's painting elicits one such search for hostiles.
Reproductions of this painting were produced.