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bon, in the Indian Ocean, where he died, she returned to Paris with a little daughter, and in 1771 ended, in deep poverty, a long and mysteriously eventful life.
In the same town of Mobile, where the disguised princess landed, there died in 1757, by unjust and barbarous torture, another person, whose character, prowess, adventures and fate, were yet more characteristic of the French colonial régime.
There was a French woodsman and solitary hunter named Beaudrot, a man of giantly size, of tremendous and athletic strength and endurance, of great renown for skill and bravery, and an especial favorite with the Indians. He was also much beloved by Bienville, the famous French governor, and often employed by him upon secret and dangerous missions of importance amongst the Creeks and other tribes, many of whose dialects, and all. whose customs, he perfectly understood. Endowed with the genuine kindness of heart which so often characterizes men of great physical strength, he had repeatedly used his peculiar advantages in the interest of captives amongst the savages ; saving more lives than one, even if the ransom cost him all the profits of his rude traffic.
Beaudrot was one night returning alone through the forest upon what was called the Chattahouchie trail, from Fort Toulouse, to the commandant at which post he had carried a letter from Governor Bienville.
INCIDENTS OF FOREST LIFE.
The night comes down upon him far within the forest, for indeed the journey is of many days. The wary and hardy wanderer, not kindling any fire for fear of discovery by Indians, according to his custom when alone, ensconces himself close beneath a huge pine log, and sleeps with the light sleep of the Indian hunter, upon the dry pine leaves, his head upon his knapsack. Light steps awaken him; listening motionlessly, his quick ears distinguish the guttural sounds of a low conversation between Indians, not so distant but that he can judge of their numbers and discern their purpose and circumstances. They kindle a fire of lightwood; the hidden giant is within the circle of its brilliant glare; and but for the shelter of his log, had surely been discovered. Stealthily peering from his concealment, he sees three stout warriors eating their
but his kind and brave heart beats quick at the sightof a white man their prisoner, bound, and so tied to a tree as to be obliged to stand upright. The Indians complete their frugal meal, with small care for the appetite of their prize; and leaving him to stand in sleepless weariness all night, they fall asleep. Beaudrot has recognized the prisoner, a Frenchman, owning a small plantation on the Tensas River; and waiting impatiently until the warriors are snoring in secure slumber, he noiselessly approaches. His first impulse is to discover himself, loose the captive, give him a pistol, and with him to
attack the sleepers. But the poor frightened fellow would cry out at sight of him; and the risk forbids that scheme. So, creeping along, he manages to place himself in such a position that his heavily charged carbine covers two of the warriors, lying close together. He fires ; both of them are killed; the third, leaping instinctively from sleep to the attack, forgetting his gun, and armed only with his hatchet, Beaudrot fires a pistol into his stomach. The Creek whoops and falls dead. Beaudrot now hastens to untie his bewildered fellow countryman, who, however, informs him that the three warriors were only a detached party; and that ten others returning from a further expedition against the settlements, are doubtless not far off upon the trail. Beaudrot, hereupon, makes straight for the Alabama River with the rescued prisoner; builds a raft, and after floating some distance down the stream, pulls the frail vehicle in pieces, sets the fragments adrift, and the two fugitives plunge deep into a dreary swamp on the further bank. It is daylight; and quite secured against pursuit by these prompt, multiplied, and cunning precautions, they call a halt, and the intrepid woodsman revives his friend and himself, from his slender stores of bread and dried venison, and by the judicious administration of some small draughts from a certain little bottle of brandy. Thus refreshed, and with a few hours' rest, they set out again and Beaudrot's skill supports them on game, until
after a tedious march through the forest, they arrive in safety at Mobile.
By such deeds is the valiant Beaudrot endeared to the men of Mobile and thereabouts. But, at last, upon some unjust pretext, during the administration of Governor Kerlerec, some years after, we find him imprisoned at a frontier French post on Cat Island, by the tyrannical command of a monster of the Chopart school, named Duroux; who had long exercised the most degrading oppression over the helpless privates of his command. He forced his soldiers to cultivate his gardens ; to burn coal, to make lime; and he sold the produce of their labor for his own profit. Those who refused the unsoldierly duty he would have tied naked to trees, to endure the poisonous stings of the bloodthirsty insects of the swamp. Some of those thus tortured fled to New Orleans with their complaints ; but apparently from some fancied necessity such as often governs military discipline, of maintaining authority, however abused, Kerlerec sends them back to their duty unsatisfied. Duroux now increases his abuses, and deprives them of all food except spoiled bread. The wretched men, furious at their misery, conspire against their tyrant, slay him, strip the corpse and cast it out unburied into the sea; and then rifling the stores at the little fort, for once they enjoy sumptuous fare.
But after such mutiny they can no longer remain
in the French colony; so they release Beaudrot from prison, and compel him to act as their guide towards the English in Georgia. Doubtless, he was not much grieved at the opportunity; and so he leads them in good faith through distant and circuitous routes to the Indian town of Coweta on the Chattahoochie, and there receiving from them a formal certificate that he was not concerned in the death of Duroux, and had acted by compulsion in assisting their flight, they dismiss him, and he returns quietly to his home near Mobile.
Months afterward he is suddenly imprisoned by the commandant there ; and in the dungeon he finds three of the soldiers whom he had assisted to escape. Lingering unwisely amongst the hospitable Indians about Coweta, and the circumstances coming to the knowledge of the authorities, a detachment from Fort Toulouse had arrested the poor fellows, and after due examination and communication, the order for Beaudrot's arrest had been sent from New Orleans to Mobile in a sealed package by the hands of two of his own sons, who were thus the ignorant means of their father's death. He was condemned by a courtmartial, in spite of his certificate and other testimony; and amid the sympathy and horror-struck grief of the people of Mobile, was broken on the wheel—that is, bound naked to a cart wheel erected for the purpose upon a post through its axis, his