Lt-Col John Stuart, of the Gds.

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Capt. John Stuart

Also Known As: "“Beloved Father of the Cherokee“", "“Bushyhead”"
Birthdate: (60)
Birthplace: Inverness, Highland, Scotland, United Kingdom
Death: February 21, 1779 (60)
Pensacola, Escambia County, Florida, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Bailie John Steuart and Christina "Ann" Macleod
Husband of Sarah Stuart and Susannah Stuart
Father of Sarah Christiana Graham; Christiana Fenwick; Sir John Joseph Stuart, Count of Maida; unknown Stuart and Oo-na-du-to Bushyhead Stuart
Brother of Charles Stuart; Anne Hay-Newton; Allan Stuart and Francis Stuart
Half brother of Helen Stuart; Alexander Stuart; Robert Stuart; Dr. James Stuart; Marian Stuart and 1 other

Occupation: official of the British Empire
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Lt-Col John Stuart, of the Gds.

John Stuart (25 September 1718 to 21 March 1779) was a Scottish-born official of the British Empire in North America. He was the superintendent for the southern district of the British Indian Department from 1761 to 1779; his northern counterpart was Sir William Johnson.

Born in Inverness, by 1748 Stuart had emigrated to South Carolina, where he worked as a merchant. He became prominent in local affairs and in 1760 served as a militia captain in the Anglo-Cherokee War. Stuart was captured by the Cherokees, but was ransomed by Chief Attakullakulla and returned to South Carolina.

His familiarity with Native Americans and the frontier led to his appointment as superintendent in the Indian Department. His role was to help Great Britain and the colonies bring order to their relations with the southern Indians (the "Five Civilized Tribes"), and to prevent the recurrence of anti-British native confederations like the one that had produced Pontiac's Rebellion in 1763. Stuart's diplomacy was successful, and when the American Revolutionary War broke out in 1775, most native leaders in his area supported the British. During the war he fled to Georgia and then to Pensacola in the Loyalist colony of West Florida, where he died.

His home, built in 1772 in Charleston, is now known as the Colonel John Stuart House and was named a U.S. National Historic Landmark in 1973.


Capt. John Stuart, the first husband of Susannah Emory, was born in Scotland, came to America in 1733 as a young lad and settled in South Carolina. He became a captain in the British army and was second in command of the garrison at Ft. Loudon, Georgia when it was forced to capitulate to the militant Cherokees on August 7, 1760. Through the intervention of Attacullaculla, a civil chief among the Cherokees, the life of Capt. Stuart was spared from the general massacre of the garrison which ensued and was removed to Virginia where he was released. Subsequently, he became the British Indian Agent to the tribes south of the Ohio river and married young Susannah Emory. Capt. Stuart became known among the Cherokees as Oo-na-du-to or Bushyhead because of his heavy growth of blonde hair.2 The ambitious captain, during the early days of our War of the Revolution, conceived a plan to exterminate the rebellious whig colonists in one grand uprising and butchery by the Indians led by English tories, in June 1776, confiscate their property and allot their lands to new loyalist colonists. The entire scheme failed and Capt. Stuart was subsequently stationed at Pensacola, Florida, where he died on February 21, 1779. His only son, also known as Oo-na-du-to or Bushyhead, married Nancy Foreman, the half-blood Cherokee Indian daughter of Anthony Foreman, a Scotchman, and lived, died and was buried in Georgia. Nancy removed with a contingent of the Cherokees led by her son Jesse Bushyhead to the West, in the spring of 1839. She is reputed to have lived to the advanced age of 104 years and died in 1868 in the Illinois river country near Tahlequah.

2"History of the United States" by Redpath, Vol. VI, p. 2505.

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Lt-Col John Stuart, of the Gds.'s Timeline

September 25, 1718
Inverness, Highland, Scotland, United Kingdom
June 9, 1750
Age 31
London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom
Age 33
Charleston, Charleston County, South Carolina, United States
Age 40
Province of Georgia, American Colonies under British rule
Age 48
Old Cherokee Nation, Georgia, United States
February 21, 1779
Age 60
Pensacola, Escambia County, Florida, United States