Print Page | Close Window

Timbuctoo, and the Battle of Pine Swamp

Printed From: History Community ~ All Empires
Category: Regional History or Period History
Forum Name: History of the Americas
Forum Discription: The Americas: History from pre-Colombian times to the present
URL: http://www.allempires.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=31781
Printed Date: 06-Jul-2022 at 06:46
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 9.56a - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: Timbuctoo, and the Battle of Pine Swamp
Posted By: red clay
Subject: Timbuctoo, and the Battle of Pine Swamp
Date Posted: 21-May-2012 at 12:28
There was recently a flurry of misguided and misinformed posts that implied that New Jersey was a slave state or supported slavery.   In the 1800's there was a federal law which allowed slave catchers to cross state lines and to enter non slave states.  That did not mean that the states they entered supported slavery.  In fact, the slave catchers took their lives in their hands when they entered NJ.
Down the road from me, about 5 miles from my home is a spot on the map[ and yes it's on the map] called Timbuctoo.  Locally it's known as Bucto or Bucktown.  It was a town founded in 1820 by free blacks and escaped slaves, supported by the Quaker community.  Keep in mind that a large part of NJ was part of Wm. Penn's original land grant and was refd to as West Jersey.  The Quakers were staunchly anti slavery and instrumental in the setting up and running of the Underground railroad.
In 1860, a group of catchers came north looking for a particular slave named "Simmons" that's all  that's known about him.  He was hiding out in Bucto.  When the catchers approached bucto they were met by a group of armed free blacks and escaped slaves, supported by an equally large group of sympathetic whites, also armed.  What followed is famous in NJ and known as "The Battle of Pine Swamp".  There doesn't seem to be much record of the particulars of the battle itself, oral histories and local legend are about all there is.  That several of the catchers were killed and several wounded is known.  Casualties among the Anti Slave group aren't known.  The catchers withdrew, actually it was more like running for their lives, as word was spreading into neighboring towns and more groups of armed anti slave folks were showing up.  [Local legend has it that participating in the battle on the anti slave side was a group of Lenni Lenape indians who had opted to stay on their ancestral lands, just across the Rancocas creek from Bucto] 
Slave Catchers thought long and hard about crossing into NJ after that event.  It's interesting to note that, where NJ was anti slavery, that did not automatically mean they were anti south.  Considering a small part of the state is below the MD line there were Southern Sympathizers.  But to my knowledge, they weren't pro slavery.
 
Timbuctoo, the original settlement, no longer exists.  It is now a historical site and has been excavated in an ongoing archaeological investigation, conducted by Temple Uni.
 
From WIKI-  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timbuctoo,_New_Jersey - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timbuctoo,_New_Jersey
 
A comprehensive article from the Washington Post-
 
                   http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/02/AR2010080205217.html - http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/02/AR2010080205217.html
 
 
 
 
 
 


-------------
"Arguing with someone who hates you or your ideas, is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter what move you make, your opponent will walk all over the board and scramble the pieces".
Unknown.



Replies:
Posted By: Nick1986
Date Posted: 21-May-2012 at 19:15
Very interesting Red. Did the Indians often help the abolitionists and fleeing slaves before the Civil War?

-------------
Me Grimlock not nice Dino! Me bash brains!


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 22-May-2012 at 08:59
Originally posted by Nick1986

Very interesting Red. Did the Indians often help the abolitionists and fleeing slaves before the Civil War?
 
 
According to local legend, yes.  The Underground railroad ran through here.  The house my parents lived in during the 70's was one of the "safe houses".  The Lenni lived here before and at contact.  There were more than a few who had decided not to go to "Brotherton" now known as "Indian Mills".  Brotherton was the first reservation in the "colonies" and was located about 25 miles from here.  Those who stayed had become quakers themselves and were active in the anti slave movement.
This is oral history, but the reason for the underground railroad running through here was the river crossing between Bucto and Rancocas.  The original Lenni settlement was at the forks dividing the Rancocas and had existed for approx. 500 years.  During that period the indians had constructed a causeway of loose stacked stones.  At low tide you could walk across the river and barely get damp.  The site was called "Long Bridge".
The town of Hainesport and Long Bridge State Park now occupy the site of the original Lenni village. 
 
 
 
 


-------------
"Arguing with someone who hates you or your ideas, is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter what move you make, your opponent will walk all over the board and scramble the pieces".
Unknown.


Posted By: Nick1986
Date Posted: 22-May-2012 at 19:28
I've heard there were several Black Indians in Florida before the Seminole War. Escaped slaves were apparently adopted by the local swamp tribes and produced mixed-race children

-------------
Me Grimlock not nice Dino! Me bash brains!


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 23-May-2012 at 15:26
Nick, that's a whole different matter.  Yes tribes did do that, but it's more complex than that.  Google Melungeon.

-------------
"Arguing with someone who hates you or your ideas, is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter what move you make, your opponent will walk all over the board and scramble the pieces".
Unknown.


Posted By: GuyWeston
Date Posted: 15-Jul-2018 at 09:29
A few corrections:
The full text of an 1860 New Jersey Mirror article reporting the Battle of Pine Swamp is available on www.timbuctoonj.com under "New Jersey Mirror Articles". Other information on the site points out that Timbuctoo has existed in perpetuity since 1826. The notion that "the original settlement" of Timbuctoo was limited to the compact site of the archeological investigation is an unfortunate misstatement of fact.


-------------
Timbuctoo1826


Posted By: red clay
Date Posted: 15-Jul-2018 at 21:35
Old property docs indicate some sort of settlement ca. 1815-1820. I live about 5 miles from Bucto and my parents lived here since early 60's.

I've heard a dozen different versions of Pine Swamp, one fact is no one is quite sure exactly where it took place.
The folks around here are pretty aware that Bucto/ Blue Jay Hill was much more than the small area that was excavated.



-------------
"Arguing with someone who hates you or your ideas, is like playing chess with a pigeon. No matter what move you make, your opponent will walk all over the board and scramble the pieces".
Unknown.


Posted By: GuyWeston
Date Posted: 16-Jul-2018 at 11:59
Read the article. It's the original report from 1860
Regarding founding: The deeds are all available in the County Clerk's office. There's a map on www.timbuctoonj.com, based on the deeds.  The first purchases were made on September 3, 1826 
My 4th great grandfather  bought his lot on December 15, 1829


Posted By: Robin Butler Johnson
Date Posted: 28-Sep-2018 at 11:02
 I have been so fascinated. about the town that my ancestors founded and made it their home. I am one of the direct line of descidant of Charles William Butler. And i was present at the Timbuctoo memorial event Sept 22nd 2018. That day has given my family and I a new determination to honor our genealogical blood line with great esteem and love and deep respect. Yes, that Timbuctoo- Buck-toe is and will always be the reason why I am here today. Oh!! how much their hard work, struggles,  determination and triumphs has made an impact on my life.  I will and forever be eternally greatful for those men and woman of Timbuctoo my ancestors.



Print Page | Close Window

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums® version 9.56a - http://www.webwizforums.com
Copyright ©2001-2009 Web Wiz - http://www.webwizguide.com