Powder horn - ROM2008_10477_2


Powder horn

Maker: Lt. William Sharp
Medium:Engraved and carved horn
Geography: Possibly Picolata, Florida, USA
Date: 1766
28 cm
Object number: 882.1.1
Not on view

Engraved with scenes of a meeting between a British Governor of Florida and Creek Nation leaders in 1765.

According to the Toronto Globe, December 15, 1879, Sir Daniel Wilson gave a talk at the Canadian Institute on this powder horn. The following is quoted from the article: "He remarked that it was the property of Mr. J.A.R. White, of Walkerton, Ont., who, first serving with the Royal Engineers at the Indian Mutiny, was present at the siege of Lucknow, and there took the horn from the body of a Sepoy killed in a skirmish at the Stone Bridge, on March 17, 1857. Here was a horn, the memorial of a treaty with the Creek nation as far back as 1765, upwards of a century ago, turning up on the other side of the globe. It was supposed by its present owners to have been acquired by the Sepoy from the spoils of some native English family...On one side, below a carved shield, is the following inscription: "William Sharpe, Esq., Lieutenant of the Ninth Regt., 1766." Next to this is a representation of a group of British officers around a table (above which is a canopy), one of whom is writing and the rest looking on. They wear the three-cornered cocked hat of the 18th century. Behind them is a group of Creeks engaged in a war dance, under whom appears the following: "An Indian beloved dance, performed by ye Creeks." In front of the table is a group of Indians, all of whom are seated on the ground except three, two of the latter being seated on chairs smoking tomahawk pipes. Inscribed below is the following: "The Congress held at Picalta betwixt Govr. Grant, the head men and warriors of the Creek Nation, Novr. the 17th, 1765." On the reverse side is a man shooting at a deer. Dr. Wilson said he had looked in vain in all the gazetteers for a place called "Picalta," but as Lieut. Grant was appointed by Gen. Amherst to the command of the forces occupying what is now known as the Southern States in 1765, and as he continued in command until subsequent to the date of this memorial horn, he (Dr. Wilson) supposed it to be the same. He further stated that the term Creeks was applied very loosely by the English to a number of different tribes, including the Catawbas, Cherokees, Choctaws, &c, but the Creeks, properly speaking, were the Indians of the famous Muskogee Confederacy, who occupied the northern portion of the States of Georgia, and Alabama, and who, being in deadly feud with the Iroquois, were repeatedly stirred up by the French to take up arms against the English and their allies."

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