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 Thomas Hinds

 

After the Battle of New Orleans, General Andrew Jackson said of Jefferson Troop of cavalry and its commanding officer Thomas Hinds, “the cavalry excited the imagination of one army and the astonishment of the other.”

 

“Major Thomas Hinds, born in Berkley County, Virginia, January 19, 1780; died August 23, 1840; had an illustrious career. In 1806, he organized for the defense of Mississippi a company of dragoons, his first known act of public service; later, at the Battle of New Orleans (War of 1812) he covered himself with immortal fame by his marvelously brave attacks on the British while leading as Major his Mississippi cavalry company, so much so that his company, with personal mention of him, was made subject of a laudatory order issued by Major General Andrew Jackson, there in command, on January 21, 1815.  Major Hinds (referred to as General Hinds) was defeated by George Poindexter for Governor of Mississippi in 1819, but the next year(1820) he and General Jackson were appointed commissioners to negotiate a purchase from the Choctaw Indians of a part of their territory, and in 1821 Hinds County was named for him, and in the same year he with Governor James Patton and Dr. William Lattimore, were appointed by the Mississippi Legislature as commissioners to select a proper site for the seat of government, which they did, choosing the present city of Jackson, naming it for General Jackson.  As further recognition of Major Hind’s popularity and influence, it may be noted that he was elected to Congress in 1827.”

 

Children of Thomas and Leminda (Green) Hinds

John – died in infancy

Howell – born Sept. 1, 1809, Jefferson County, MS, died April 9, 1841, married (1) Drucilla Cocks -  Issue: Thomas, Wilkin, and Leminda

(2) Mrs. Mary Ann (Coleman) Lape – Issue: Alice, John, and Howell

 

Thomas Hind’s wife, Leminda, was of the prominent Green family of Jefferson County, and daughter of Thomas Marston Green, Jr.  She was born July 5, 1761 and died January 29, 1819.

 

from THE EWING GENEALOGY  by Presley K. and Mary E. Ewing, Hercules Book Co: Houston, 1919

 

 

THOMAS HINDS -  a Representative from Mississippi; born in Berkeley County, Va., January 9, 1780; moved to Greenville, Miss.; served in the War of 1812 as major of Cavalry; distinguished himself at the Battle of New Orleans and was brevetted brigadier general for gallantry; unsuccessful candidate for Governor in 1820; elected as a Democrat to the Twentieth Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of William Haile; reelected to the Twenty-first Congress and served from October 21, 1828, to March 3, 1831; died in Greenville, Miss., August 23, 1840.

from THE BIOGRAPHICAL DIRECTORY OF THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS

 

 

Major Thomas Hinds in the Creek War and the War of 1812

In 1814 the most dangerous circuit was that of Peter James and Ira Byrd, with most of the people still at the forts.  A much stronger military was now present.  Col. Pushmatah, with about 400 friendly Choctaws, was marching upon the Creeks.  General Claiborne was getting ready to leave Pine Level, near St. Stephens and move east toward the Alabama River. General Jackson with his Tennessee troops was advancing down the Coosa, and the general outlook became encouraging.

When news of the downfall of Major Beasley and his troops of Jefferson County reached Major-General Thomas Hinds, the lion-hearted man reached a frenzy.  He called on his fellow citizens to unite with him to avenge the blood of their slain neighbors, and was soon at the head of a mounted battalion on the way to the seat of the war.  He reported to an embarrassed Gen. Claiborne at St. Stephens, who told Hinds he had no room for his command in the fort, that he was required to keep all of his supplies at the fort for his auxiliary Choctaw who were soon to join him under the order of Col. Pushmataha, and the had no authority to issue orders to Hind's troops, as they were not placed under his command.  Hinds replied that he need feel no embarrassment on his account, that he had not come to Alabama to fort-up and wait for the Indians to find him; he planned to find them.  He would get his horses and supplies where they were to be found, and he wanted no formality of  regular orders.

Hinds and his troops camped outside the fort that night, while he directed his troops to prepare several day's rations and be ready to start for the Alabama River at dawn on a regular "Indian hunt."  His little battalion embraced a fair proportion of the elite and chivalry of Jefferson County, but also included some recreants who protested the Indian hunt.  Major Hinds immediately gave permission for any to leave who were unwilling to follow him the next morning.  They would not be punished.  A number of men were missing at roll call.

With the remaining force, Hinds marched in the direction of Lower Peach Tree on the Alabama River, in regular military order.   Hinds learned from his scouts that a number of Creeks were on a plantation on the west bank of the river, shelling corn and conveying it in their canoes across the river.  Quietly his force descended like an avalanche on the unsuspecting savages, who were terrified and made faint resistance.  Most of the Indians were slain on the ground, and others shot in the river trying to escape.  It looked savage for the Jefferson County troops to kill the women and children, but they thought of the butchery of helpless women and children at the Fort Mims massacre, and thought of revenge as, "paying the savages in their own currency."

This little known act of the Jefferson County troops struck such terror in the hostile Creeks in the area, that few were ever seen there by the white inhabitants of the Tombigbee again. Major Hinds was known as a prudent but brave and dashing military leader.  His small troop soon became the Mississippi Dragoons, then a regiment, and finally a brigade which he commanded in the vicinity of New Orleans.

In the meantime, General Claiborne advanced to the east bank of the Alabama River opposite Weatherford's Bluff where he erected a large stockade fort called Fort Claiborne. In November, at the head of nearly a thousand Georgians and about 400 friendly Indians, Gen. Floyd crossed the Chatahooche and advanced on the Creeks at the Tallapoosa. In December, Gen. Claiborne marched with a strong force including the friendly Choctaws under Pushmataha, above the mouth of the Cahaba River, where he was effective against the enemy.  The Creeks, surrounded and invaded on three sides were conquered, and almost exterminated by the last of April, 1814, and on the 9th of the following August a treaty of peace was concluded and signed by the United States and the remaining chiefs.

from A Complete History of Methodism As Connected With the Mississippi Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South Written at the Unanimous Request of the Conference by Rev. John Griffing Jones ,Nashville, Tenn., Southern Methodist Publishing House, Printed for the author, 1887. 

 

submitted by Sue B. Moore sbmoore@swbell.net

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