Mark F. Boyd


The success attained by Lieutenant Diego Pena in the discharge of the mission to Apalachee and Apalachicolo, to which he was assigned in the summer of 1716, made him the logical choice for similar duties in the following two years. The authorities in St. Augustine entertained the hope of repopulating Apalachee through inducements offered to surviving Apalacheans then living along the Apalachicolo (present-day Chattahoochee) river and elsewhere, as well as members of adjacent and related tribes, whose disillusionment with the English had produced the then recent Yamassee war. Knowledge that the success of this project was imperiled by the English, who were again penetrating this area in an effort to regain their former ascendancy over the Indians, and that the French from Mobile as well were, with thinly veiled hostility since the death of Louis XIV, competing for Indian favor, intensified the efforts of the Spanish authorities to bring the Indians wholly under Spanish influence. The French had penetrated among the Upper Creeks where they enjoyed considerable favor, while among the Lower Creeks the competition between Spanish and English partisans resulted in much turbulance.