On March 22, 1824, two families of Seneca Indians were camped between Fall Creek and Deer Lick Creek in Madison County. Their hunt for valuable animal pelts proved so successful that a group of six white settlers hatched a plot to steal the pelts, and in the execution of their plan brutally murdered all of the Indians, including two men, three women, and four children under the age of ten.

The prevailing attitude on the frontier was that killing Indians was not a crime, but this massacre sparked a fierce moral debate. Ultimately, four of the conspirators were placed on trial and sentenced to die by hanging.

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