John Tremble and the Last Indian Clash



The Last Indian Clash of 1764

Last Indian Raid marker


On an autumn day in 1764, John Tremble (Trimble) and his family would pay the final price
for the on-going wars between the European settlers and Native Americans.

In the preceding decade, the new country was involved in the French and Indian War, the Cherokee War, and Pontiac’s War.

The Tremble tragedy, however, would mark the last Indian clash in Augusta County. Their farm, located seven miles west of Staunton and two miles east of Churchville, would forever mark the culmination of hatred between two warring nations.

Renegade Captain Dickson

Renegade Captain Dickson was the most despised man in the Shenandoah Valley. A murderous man who had escaped punishment for his crimes, Dickson would lead a band of Shawnee on the Augusta County rampage.

Adam, the family’s servant, and the Tremble’s eight-year-old son, Jim, along with Kitty, his visiting pregnant sister, were captured by the Shawnee. Mary hid in the woods while she watched her farm pillaged, horses stolen, and her home burned to the ground.

Incredibly, Dickson was almost kind to Kitty, treating her with respect and deferential care for her condition.

He showed no such mercy to young Jim Tremble, forcing the child to walk long distances, working him hard in the labor camp, and denying him adequate food and water.

Rescued from the Shawnee

Help came when the small band of prisoners heard muskets fired. It was a 25-man rescue party intent on stopping Dickson. While they did not end Dickson’s rampage that day, they did rescue the Tremble clan and collected the stolen property.

Mary Tremble and her son, Jim, would, however, have to forge a new life.

The matter would not be forgotten by Jim. Ten years later, the 18-year-old would take his revenge against the Shawnee at the Battle of Point Pleasant. There, he would help defeat them.

Russell, a volunteer for the Tremble rescue, would later kill Dickson in hand-to-hand combat.

The Shenandoah Valley is full of courageous stories like this one. Come see all that we have to offer. Stay at the Iris Inn and we’ll give you lots of great places to see!

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