The Creek Families 2

Lachlan McGillivray and Sehoy II

Alexander McGillivray and his wives Elise Moniac and Vicey Cornells
Sophie McGillivray and Benjamin Durant
Jeannett McGillivray and LeClerc Milfort


See the Sehoys

Lachlan McGillivray

LifeNotes: a Scottish trader out of Charleston, SC. He may have had a sister named Margaret McGillivray. He came into the Creek country and set up a trading post at Ochiapofa or Hickory Ground Town (also known as Little Tallasi), close to the present Wetumpka, Alabama.

From Dr. Marion Elisha Tarvin's "The Muscogees or Creek Indians, from 1519 to 1893-- also an Account of The McGillivray Family and Others of Alabama":
"Lachlan McGillivray, a Scotch boy of sixteen summers, had read of the wonders of America. He ran away from his parents at Dunmanglass, Scotland, and took passage for Charleston, S.C., arriving there safely in 1735, with no property but a shilling in his pocket, a suit of clothes, a stout frame, an honest heart, a fearless disposition and cheerful spirits. About this period the English were conducting an extensive commerce with the Muscogees, Cherokees and Chickasaws. McGillivray went to the extensive quarters of the packhorse traders in the suburbs of Charleston; there he saw hundreds of packhorses, pack-saddles and men ready to start to the wilderness. The keen eyes of the traders fell on this smart Scotch boy, who, they saw would be useful to them.

"Arriving at the Chatahoochie his master, as a reward for his activity and accommodating spirit, gave him a jack-knife which he sold in Charleston on his return. The proceeds of this adventure laid the foundation of a large fortune. In a few years he became the boldest and most enterprising trader in the whole country. He extended his commerce to Ft. Toulouse in the Muskogee or Creek nation. At the Hickory Grounds a few miles above the fort, at the present town of Wetumpka, Alabama, he found a beautiful girl by the name of Sehoy Marchand, of whose father we have already given an account. Her mother, was a full-blooded Creek woman of the Wind family. Sehoy when first seen by Lachlan McGillivray was a maiden of sixteen, cheerful in countenance, bewitching in looks and graceful in form. It was not long before Lachlan and Sehoy joined their destinies in marriage. The husband established a trading house Little Tulsa, four miles above Wetulmpka, on the east bank of the Coosa, and then took home his beautiful wife." Dr. Tarvin was Sehoy's great-great grandson through David Tate and his manuscript has proven invaluable for providing familiy ties (many thanks to Joan Case for this contribution). See Tarvin's McGillivray family piece in its entirety.

Lachlan and Sehoy lived at Little Tallassee in Alabama. In 1782, after nearly 40 years in the Wilderness, because of his loyalty to the crown, Lachlan McGillivray was forced to return to Scotland at the end of the Revolutionary War.

From Woodrow Wallace: In America the McGillivray Clan was fur traders, a very lucrative business in those days. The Dunmaglas Estates in the Scottish Highlands had fallen on bad times, since the Battle of Culloden, in which the McGillivrays were participants on the side of the Stuarts, who lost to the present English first family. Another branch of the McGillivrays were commissioned from the king in the fur trading business in Canada and around the Great Lakes. Lachlan and Lt Col John were commissioned for the Southeastern Indians. Lachlan with the Creeks, and I think also the Cherokees. Lt Col John McGillivray was a prominent citizen of Mobile as well as being the Indian Agent duing the British tenure (1765-1780). Lachlan and Lt Col John McGillivray never married but fathered children by Indians, who were not recognized in the family because there was no recognized marriages by British law. Lachlan was practically forced to recognize his son Alexander and remember him in his 1762 will, because of his prominence and practical acceptance of him in Georgia. No mention is made of Sophia and Jeaanette, although Sophia was very much attached to her father.

The history of the McGillivray Indian descendants is not considered in the history of the McGillivrays of the Scottish Highlands.

Woodrow Wallace points out that from the perspective of the prominent McGillivray family of Dunmaglas in the Scottish Highlands, Lachlan's story is not of the poor lad of sixteen first appearing in Charleston, but of a business man who came to the New World to engage in the fur trading business. That contradicts the colorful Pickett story of a 16 year old runaway coming to Charleston and making it rich.

The trader James Adair who lived among the Creeks admired Lachlan McGillivray and also George Galphin. He felt very strongly that either one of them should be the Superintendant of Indian Affairs for the English. He writes on page 393 of "Adairs history of the American Indians" by Samuel Cole Williams LL.D Editor, (Prommontory Press, New York), first published in 1930 by Colonial Dames of America and dedicated to "Hon. Colonel George Craghan, George Galphin and Lachlan McGillivray Esquires": "There might be introduced even among the Indian I have described, a spirit of industry, in cultivating such roduction as would agree with their land and climates; esecially if the superintendantcy of our Indian afairs, westward, was conferred on the sensible public-spirited and judicious Mr. George Galphn, merchant, or Lachlan Mcgillivray, Esq. of equal merit. Every Indian trader knows from long experience , that both of these gentlemen have a greater influence over the dangerous Muskohge, than any others besides. And the security of Georgia requires one or the other of them speedily to superintend our Indian affairs. It was chiefly the skillful management of these worthy patriots, which prevented the Muskohge from joining the Cherokee, according to treaty, against us in the year 1760 and 1761. -- to their great expierence and hazard of life..."

Born: 1719 in Drumnaglass, Inverneshire, Scotland; Married: about 1738 in Wetumpka, now Elmore Co., Alabama; see the text of his first will of 1767; Died after 1782 Isle of Skye, Scotland.
Parents: William McGillivray and Janet McIntosh

Sehoy II

LifeNotes: Of the Wind Clan. Also known as Sehoy HATALI. Her first husband was either Malcolm McPherson or a Chief of the Tucabachee (does anybody know??) and she had a daughter from that union -- Sehoy III, who would grow up to become the mother of the great William Weatherford.

Born: 4/1722, Ft. Toulouse, Elmore Co., AL; 2nd- Married: about 1738 in Wetumpka, now Elmore Co., Alabama; Died,
Parents: Sehoy I and Louis Marchand

Their children were:

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Alexander McGillivray

Born: 12/15/1750, in Little Tulsa, Elmore, AL, according to Lachlan McGillivray's will, which was written in GA; Married: 2nd-about 1779 in Otciapofa, Elmore, AL; Died: 2/17/1793 in Pensacola, FL while visiting on business and staying with William Panton. Alexander McGillivray is buried somewhere there in the garden of Panton's home. See the obituary, from Gentlemen's Magazine, and also see the letter Panton wrote to Lachlan McGillivray.
Parents: Sehoy II and Lachlan McGillivray

LifeNotes: Born into the Wind Clan of the Creeks, he was sent to school in Charleston, SC under the tutelege of his father's cousin Rev. Farquhar McGillivray. His sister Sophie also was sent to school in Charleston; she didn't stay as long as Alexander. Alexander mastered of Latin, and Greek and grew to be a man. He missed his family and his home in the Wild. He was needed by his people and they let him know. So Alexander decided to return west.

From Dr. Marion Elisha Tarvin: "About this time the Chiefs of the Creeks were getting into trouble with the people of Georgia, and with anxiety they awaited the time when Alexander HoGillivrey could, by his descent from the Wind family, assume the affairs of their government, His arrival was most opportune. The first time we bear of him after he left Charleston, was of his presiding at a grand national Council at the town of Coweta upon the Chattahoochie, where the adventurous Leclerc Milfort of France was introduced to him; he was at this time about thirty years of age, and was in great power, for he had already become an object of attention on the part of the British authorities of the Floridas, when Col. Tate, a British officer who was stationed upon the Coosa, had conferred upon Alexander McGillivray the rank and pay of a Colonel, and he and Tate were associated together in the interests of King George. Col. Tate, according to Pickett's history of Alabama, had now become acquainted with the most gifted and remarkable man that was ever born upon the soil of Alabama... " Alexander was made Emperor of the Creeks. He had been away from his people so long that he has lost his Muscogee language; his sister Sophie McGillivray served as his translator. Alexander's greatest desire was that the tribes should unite in a confederacy.

Alexander had a successful rplantation at Hickory Ground, near present-day Wetumpka, AL. Was business partners with William Panton of Panton, Leslie & Co., the great trading house in Pensacola. His constant companions were the black hero Paro and the mixed blood David Francis. Alexnader McGillivray did much to further the interests of his people. In the 1790s, Alexander McGillivray went to Philadelphia, PA to receive a special commendation from George Washington.

From Dr. Marion Elisha Tarvin of his great great-uncle Alexander McGillivray: "He was humane and generous to the distressed, whom he always sheltered and protected. He had many noble traits, not the least of which was his unbounded hospitality to friend and foe.He had good houses at the Hickory Grounds and Little Tulsa, also called 'Apple Grove' (his birthplace) where he entertained distinguished government agents and persons traveling through his extensive domain, with ample grounds and all the comforts desirable. He said he prompted the Indians to defend their lands, 'Although I look upon the U.S. as our most natural ally'. He could not but resent the greedy encroachments of the Georgias, to say nothing of their scandalous and illiberal abuse. He also says, 'If congress will form a government southward of the Altamaha, I will be the first to take the oath of allegiance,' This, he said in a letter to his friend Panton at Pensacola, in relation to his treaty with Washington, 'In this do you not see my cause of triumph in bringin these conquerors of the old, and the masters of the New World, as they called themselves, to bond and supplicate for peace at the feet of a people whom shortly before they had despised and marked out for destruction?'"

During the Revolutionary War, Alexander McGillivray was made a Colonel with full pay by Col. John Tait / Tate (who was married to Sehoy III). In 1784, he as Emperor of the Creeks and Seminoles, went to Pensacola to make a treaty with Spain.

On the other hand, the Whigs in Georgia confiscated all Lachlan McGillivray's (Alexander's father) lands and monies, and Lachlan, due to his loyalties to the Crown, was forced to leave his family and flee to Scotland. Alexander and his siblings were thereby deprived of their inheritances.

See some letters of Alexander McGillivray.

At this time, in the late 18th century, Spain held the large trading posts at the port cities of Pensacola, Mobile, St. Augustine and Savannah. The Creeks looked to the Spanish for help.

In 1785 Alexander McGillivray wrote a letter to the Governor of Florida and pleaded with him to urge his King (the Spanish King) to help the Indians; McGillivray reminded the Governor that the "Treaty of Peace between the King of Great Britain and the States of America:" claimed their land and added "declaring that as we determined to pay no attention to the manner to which British navigators has drawn out the lines of the lands in question ceded to the States of America -- it being a notorious fact to the Americans -- known to every person who is in any way conversant in, or acquainted with American affairs, that his Brittainic Majesty was never possessed with, by session, purchase, or by right of conquest to our territories, and which the said Treaty gives away. We have repeatedly warned the states of Carolina and Georgia to desist their encroachments, and to confine themselves within the lands (granted) to Britain in the year 1773. To these remonstrances we have received friendly talks and replys it is true; but while they are addressing us by appellations of FRIENDS and BROTHERS, they are stripping us of our natural rights by depriving us of that inheritance which belonged to our ancestors and hath descended from them to us since the beginnng of time."

In 1790, went to New York to make a treaty with the American government; he received the rank of brigadier general with full pay ($1200 per year, increased to $3500 in 1792).

Read the Treaty with the Creeks 1790, among others, on the Library of Oklahoma web site.

Alexander McGillivray was shrewd and cunning and was a man of affairs, not a military man. He had been a Lt. Colonel in the French Army, a Colonel in the Spanish Army, a Brigadier General in the American Army, with salaries from all. He was recognized as a statesman by Great Britain, America, Spain and France and called Emperor of the Creeks. Clearly he was the last great leader of the Creeks and the only one to be able to hold them together.

As described by Dr. Marion Elisha Tarvin: "Gen. McGillivray was six feet high, remarkably erect in person and carriage, and a charming entertainer. He had a bold and lofty head; his eyes were dark and piercing and he was often spoken of and looked upon with admiration. His fingers were long and tapering, and he wielded a pen with great rapidtity. His face was handsome and indicative of quick thought and much sagacity. Unless interested in conversation he was disposed to be taciturn, but he was always polite and respectful. When a British Colonel he dressed in British uniform, and when in the Spanish service lie wore the military dress of that country. When George Washington appointed him Brigadier General he sometimes wore the uniform of the American Army, but never In the presence of the Spaniards. Pickett calls him the "Talleyrand of the South".

Abigail Adams, wife of the vice-president and later president John Adams, remarked when she met McGillivray that he was "much of a gentleman."

In 1792 Alexander McGillivray gave up his home to Captain Oliver, a Frenchman, whom he has so well established in the affections of his people. He then moved to Little River, Baldwin County, AL, where lived many wealthy and intelligent people whose blood was a mixture of white and Indian. This colony had formed at an early period for the benefit of their large stock of cattle.

The account of his death will here be given in the language of the great Scottish merchant William Panton, in, a letter dated Pensacola, 4/10/1794, and addressed to Alexander's father, Lachlan McGillivray, at Dunmanglass, Scotland: "I found him deserted by the British, without pay, without money, without property except sixty negroes and three hundred head of cattle, and he and his Nation threatened with destruction by the Georgians unless they agreed to cede them the better part of their country. I pointed out a mode that succeeded beyond expectations. He died Feb. l7th, 1793, of inflamed lungs, and stomach troubles; no pains no attention was spared to save the life, of my friend, but he breathed his last time in my arms. I had advised, I supported, I pushed him on to be the great man he was. Spaniards and Americans felt his weight, and this enabled him to lead me after him so as to establish this house with more solid privileges than without him. He had three children, now left without father or mother, and with no friends except you and me."

Read a Description by Benjamin Hawkins, 1799, of Hickory Ground, 6 years after the death of Alexander McGillivray (and printed in Swanton's Early History of the Creek Indians)

In 1799, the American government took control of the old Ft. St. Stephens (near York); they established there Ft. Stoddart-- this was a stockade fort with one bastion. There was a large settlement at Tensaw, first settled by Captain John Linder with the help of General McGillivray; here was the first American school and here with John Pierce as teacher, were students with the names of Tait, Weatherford, and Durant; other names were Linder, Mims.

1st-Wife: Elise Moniac (also seen spelled Manaque)
Born, Married, Died: shortly after 1793
Parents: William Dixon Moniac and Polly Colbert


Their children were:

After his father died (his mother had died shortly before), John Innerarity of London acted as his guardian; Innerarity wrote to Wm. Panton in 1798, about Aleck, "he bids fair to make a good scholar and what is better a good man."

Four years later, in 1802, John Leslie wrote to Forbes that "poor Aleck McGillivray labours under a consumption, " and that the doctor gave the young man only three months to live. Alexander McGillivray, Jr. died there in Scotland.

Vicey Cornells (2nd-Wife)
Born: about 1760 in AL; Married, Died,
Parents: Joseph Cornells and his wife (both mixed blood)

LifeNotes: She and Alexander had no children. but she many children in her 2nd-marriage. After Alexander died, Vicey Cornells married Zachariah McGirth, son of James McGirth, a Tory colonel, and had 7 children. Vicey and 6 of her children were survivors of the horrors at the Massacre of Fort Mims; one son died. Vicey and the children were saved by Sanoto, a Creek warrior who as an orphan, has grown up in Vicey's home.

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Sophie McGillivray

Born: about 1741 in Little Tulsa, Elmore, AL; Married: about 1758 in Little Tulsa, Elmore, AL; Died,
Parents: Sehoy II and Lachlan McGillivray

LifeNotes: Of the Wind Clan. Went to school in Charleston, SC under the care of her father's cousin Rev. Farquhar McGillivray. Sophie was sent to a girls' school and was very homesick for her wilderness home, so she returned home to her parents at Little Tallassee. She was taught hunting skills by her Uncle Red Shoes. Sophie was trained to be a leader to her people; she attends tribal councils at Hickory Ground. Women of the clan had a place of high importance in tribal business. Neighboring tribes are the Alibamos, the Cowetas and the Coushatta.

They lived for a time outside of Savannah, GA on one of her father's estates on the Savannah River. They are there during the seige of Savannah. And there Sophie parts with her father when he is sent back to Scotland for his loyalties to the Crown. Later because once again Sophie yearns for the Wilderness, they moved to Creek territory at Durant's Bend.

In 1792 (or 1800), Sophie and a servant rode horses for 4 days to stop a Creek attack on Tensaw in Baldwin Co., AL Two weeks later Sophie gave birth to twins. Sophie and Benjamin remained at Durant's Bend until the Creek War of 1814. Then they fled to safety among the Seminoles and Spanish in Pensacola, FL.

Her great-great-nephew Dr. Marion Elisha Tarvin (grandson of David Tate) describes her. "was beautiful in every respect, she had an air of authority, and had great influence for good."

Benjamin Peter Durant
Born: about 1735 in France; Married: about 1758 in Little Tulsa, Elmore, AL; Died,

LifeNotes: Was a Huguenot. A trader out of Charleston, SC. Known to be a pugelist.

Their children were:

Millie McQueen's children and grandchildren with roll numbers and census card numbers in the "Final Rolls of Citizens and Freedmen: are listed:

1400 Ross, Muscogee 52 F Fullblood, Census Card #427
1401 Ross, Susie l-2 (All are listed on Census Card 427
1402 Ross, Irwin 22 1-2 (halfblood - all Millie's children are listed as halfblood)
1403 Ross, Johnny 20
1404 Ross, Jenny P 13
1405 Ross, Frank Leslie (days old)

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Jeanett McGillivray

Born: about 1742 in Little Tulsa, Elmore, AL; Married:1778 in Little Tallassee, Elmore, AL; Died: Parents: Sehoy II and Lachlan McGillivray

LifeNotes: Of the Wind Clan. Sister of Alexander McGillivray, Sehoy III, Sophie McGillvray, and Elizabeth MacGillivray.

Husband: LeClerc Milfort
Born: about 1740 in Reims, Marne, France; Married:1778 in Little Tallassee, Elmore, AL; Died: 1814 in Rheims, Marne, France

LifeNotes: A French adventurer. Came to Coweta (in present day Georgia) on the Chattahoochie River. The story goes that he was taken into the tribe and made a war chief and that the Creek elders revealed their legends to LeClerc. They kept the tribal history on strands of pearls; each elder had a strand; each pearl represented one story.

Read LeClerc Milfort's "Memoirs or A Quick Glance at my Various Travles and my Sojourn in the Creek Nation"

LeClerc Milfort led a band of 200 Creek warriors to find the cave where the tribe began. This cave is Kylmulga Cave. [You may visit this cave in Talladega Co., AL; it is now named DeSoto Caverns; it was once on or near the property of my great-grandfather James Crawford Lanier]. It is near the ancient town of Cosa, mentioned in the journals of members of the expedition of Hernando DeSoto.

Milfort was among the Muscogees (Creeks) from 1776 to 1796. He met Alexander McGillivray at Coweta at a tribal conference. He went to Hickory Ground with Alexander. He met and falls in love with Jeannett McGillivray, Alexander's sister, and they married.

After the marriage, LeClerc took his nephew William Weatherford "under his wing", according to tribal tradition, and taught him the ways of the tribe.

After 20 years among the Creeks, LeClerc Milfort returned to France. In 1801-2, he published a history of the Creeks; the work is titled "General Milfort's Creek Indians". He married a 2nd time to a French woman. The Emperor Napoleon met LeClerc and made him General of the Brigade. Napoleon needed LeClerc's advice on how to deal with the Natives in the French Territory.

Their children are:

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