Ffynh 1Q

Not having an opportunity of coming to the Society to-night, I thought it would be agreeable to the members to be informed that Gwilym Owain [William Owen Pughe] and myself had an audience with General Bowles [a Cherokee Chief] this morning and that his information places the existence of a race of Welsh Indians beyond all manner of doubt however extra-ordinary it may appear in the History of our Country, I am now clearly convinced of its being a fact. Genl. Bowles describes them as very numerous and the most warlike nation on the American Continent. They are situated on the river Missouri exactly as they are laid down in the best Maps under the name of Padougas, by which it is clear that they have preserved the name of Madog to this day. He supposes that they landed about the mouth of the river Mississippi. He says that they have books among them tho’ they can’t read them. A Welshman not long ago passed through the middle of their country who escaped from the Mines of Mexico whom he thinks is the only white man who has been among them for a great length of time. They keep unmixed in general, are different in complexion from the Aboriginal Inhabitants, and many of them have Red Hair. He has not been in the country himself, but has been on the borders. His people the Creeks know them very well, it will not be a difficult matter for anyone to get into their country.

(David Samwell’s letter to the Gwyneddigion Society, 23 March 1791, British Museum Add. MS 14957)