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1777.] TRYING SITUATION OF RRITISH LADIES.
camp. Their loss, in killed and wounded, was between three and four hundred, including several officers; that of the enemy upwards of five hundred.
Burgoyne gives an affecting picture of the situation of the ladies of rank already mentioned, during this action. Lady Harriet had been directed by her husband, Major Ackland, to follow the route of the artillery and baggage, which was not exposed. "At the time the action began," writes Burgoyne, "she found herself near a small uninhabited hut, where she alighted. When it was found the action was becoming general and bloody, the surgeons of the hospital took possession of the same place, as the most convenient for the first care of the wounded. Thus was the lady in hearing of one continued fire of cannon and musketry, for four hours together, with the presumption, from the post of her husband at the head of the grenadiers, that he was in the most exposed part of the action. She had three female companions, the Baroness of Riedesel, and the wives of two British officers, Major Harnage and Lieutenant Reynell; but in the event their presence served but little for comfort. Major Harnage was soon brought to the surgeons very badly wounded; and in a little time after came intelligence that Lieutenant Reynell was shot dead. Imagination wants no helps to figure the state of the whole group."
Arnold was excessively indignant at Gates's withholding the reinforcements he had required in the heat of the action; had they been furnished, he said, he might have severed the line of the enemy and gained a complete victory. He was urgent to resume the action on the succeeding morning, and follow up the advantage he had gained, but Gates declined, to his additional annoyance. He attributed the refusal to pique or jealousy, but
Gates subsequently gave as a reason the great deficiency of powder and ball in the camp, which was known only to himself, and which he kept secret until a supply was sent from Albany.
Burgoyne now strengthened his position with intrenchments and batteries, part of them across the meadows which bordered the river, part on the brow of the heights which commanded them. The Americans likewise extended and strengthened their line of breast works on the left of the camp; the right was already unassailable. The camps were within gunshot, but with ravines and woods between them.
Washington's predictions of the effect to be produced by Morgan's riflemen approached fulfilment. The Indians, dismayed at the severe treatment experienced from these veteran bush fighters, were disappearing from the British camp. The Canadians and royal provincials, " mere trimmers," as Burgoyne called them, were deserting in great numbers, and he had no confidence in those who remained.
His situation was growing more and more critical. On the 21st, he heard shouts in the American camp, and in a little while their cannon thundered a feu de joie. News had been received from General Lincoln, that a detachment of New England troops under Colonel Brown had surprised the carrying-place, mills, and French lines at Ticonderoga, captured an armed sloop, gunboats and bateaux, made three hundred prisoners, beside releasing one hundred American captives, and were laying siege to Fort Independence.*
Fortunately for Burgoyne, while affairs were darkening in the North, a ray of hope dawned from the South. While the shouts
*Col. Varick to Schuyler. Schuyler Papers.
from the American camp were yet ringing in his ears, came a letter in cipher from Sir Henry Clinton, dated the 12th of September, announcing his intention in about ten days to attack the forts in the Highlands of the Hudson.
Burgoyne sent back the messenger the same night, and despatched, moreover, two officers in disguise, by different routes, all bearing messages informing Sir Henry of his perilous situation, and urging a diversion that might oblige General Gates to detach a part of his army; adding, that he would endeavor to maintain his present position, and await favorable events until the 12th of October.*
QUARREL BETWEEN GATES AND ARNOLD.
The jealousy of Gates had been intensely excited at finding the whole credit of the late affair given by the army to Arnold : in his despatches to government he made no mention of him. This increased the schism between them. Wilkinson, the adjutant-general, who was a sycophantic adherent of Gates, pandered to his pique by withdrawing from Arnold's division Morgan's rifle corps and Dearborn's light infantry, its arm of strength, which had done such brilliant service in the late affair: they were henceforth to be subject to no order but those from head-quarters.
Arnold called on Gates on the evening of the 22d, to remonstrate. High words passed between them, and matters came to an open rupture. Gates, in his heat, told Arnold that he did not consider him a major-general, he having sent his resignation to Congress-that he had never given him the command of any division of the army-that General Lincoln would arrive in a day or two, and then he would have no further occasion for him, and would give him a pass to go to Philadelphia, whenever he chose.f
* Burgoyne to Lord George Germain.
+ Col. Livingston to Schuyler. Schuyler Papers.
Arnold returned to his quarters in a rage, and wrote a note to Gates requesting the proffered permit to depart for Philadel phia; by the time he received it his ire had cooled and he had changed his mind. He determined to remain in camp and abide the anticipated battle.
Lincoln, in the mean time, arrived in advance of his troops; which soon followed to the amount of two thousand. Part of the troops, detached by him under Colonel Brown, were besieging Ticonderoga and Fort Independence. Colonel Brown himself, with part of his detachment, had embarked on Lake George in an armed schooner and a squadron of captured gunboats and bateaux, and was threatening the enemy's deposit of baggage and heavy artillery at Diamond Island. The toils so skilfully spread were encompassing Burgoyne more and more; the gates of Canada were closing behind him.
A morning or two after Lincoln's arrival, Arnold observed him giving some directions in the left division, and quickly inquired whether he was doing so by order of General Gates; being answered in the negative, he observed that the left division belonged to him; and that he believed his (Lincoln's) proper station was on the right, and that of General Gates ought to be in the centre. He requested him to mention this to General Gates, and have the matter adjusted.
"He is determined," writes Varick, "not to suffer any one to interfere in his division, and says it will be death to any officer who does so in action." Arnold, in fact, was in a bellicose vein, and rather blustered about the camp. Gates, he said, could not refuse him his command, and he would not yield it now that a battle was expected.
Some of the general officers and colonels of his division pro