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by armed men, and narrowly escaped with his life. He was subsequently seized and compelled to renounce the exercise of his official duties. The house of General Nevil, inspector of the revenue, was assailed, but the assailants were repulsed. They assembled in greater numbers; the magistrates and militia officers shrank from interfering, lest it should provoke a general insurrection; a few regular soldiers were obtained from the garrison at Fort Pitt. There was a parley. The insurgents demanded that the inspector and .his papers should be given up; and the soldiers march out of the house and ground their arms. The demand being refused, the house was attacked, the out-houses set on fire, and the garrison was compelled to surrender. The marshal and inspector finally escaped out of the country; descended the Ohio, and, by a circuitous route, found their way to the seat of government; bringing a lamentable tale of their misadventures.
Washington deprecated the result of these outrageous proceedings. "If the laws are to be so trampled upon with impunity," said he, "and a minority, a small one too, is to dictate to the majority, there is an end put, at one stroke, to republican government.'
It was intimated that the insurgent district could bring seven thousand men into the field. Delay would only swell the growing disaffection. On the 7th of August Washington issued a proclamation, warning the insurgents to disperse, and declaring that if tranquillity were not restored before the 1st of September, force would be employed to compel submission to the laws. To show that this was not an empty threat, he, on the same day, made a requisition on the governors of
of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia, for militia to compose an army of twelve thousand men ; afterwards augmented to fifteen thousand.
In a letter to the Governor of Virginia (Light-Horse Harry Lee), he says: "I consider this insurrection as the first formidable fruit of the Democratic Societies, brought forth, I believe, too prematurely for their own views, which may contribute to the annihilation of them.
THE DEMOCRATIC SOCIETIES.
That these societies were instituted by the artful and designing members (many of their body, I have no doubt, mean well, but know little of the real plan), primarily to sow among the people the seeds of jealousy and distrust of the government, by destroying all confidence in the administration of it, and that these doctrines have been budding and blowing ever since, is not new to any one who is acquainted with the character of their leaders, and has been attentive to their manoeuvres. early gave it as my opinion to the confidential characters around me, that if these societies were not counteracted (not by prosecutions, the ready way to make them grow stronger), or did not fall into disesteem from the knowledge of their origin, and the views with which they had been instituted by their father, Genet, for purposes well known to the government, they would shake the government to its foundation."
The insurgents manifesting a disposition to persevere in their rebellious conduct, the President issued a second proclamation on the 25th of September, describing in forcible terms, the perverse and obstinate spirit with which the lenient propositions of government had been met, and declaring his fixed purpose to reduce the re
fractory to obedience. Shortly after this he left Philadelphia for Carlisle, to join the army, then on its march to suppress the insurrection in the western part of Pennsylvania.
Just as Washington was leaving Philadelphia, a letter was put into his hands from Major-General Morgan. The proclamation had roused the spirit of that revolutionary veteran. He was on his way, he wrote, to join the expedition against the insurgents, having command of a division of the Virginia militia, of which General Lee was commander-in-chief.
Washington replied from Carlisle to his old companion in arms: “Although I regret the occasion which has called you into the field, I rejoice to hear you are there; and it is probable I may meet you at Fort Cumberland, whither I shall proceed as soon as I see the troops at this rendezvous in condition to advance. At that place, or at Bedford, my ulterior resolution must be taken, either to advance with the troops into the insurgent counties of this State, or to return to Philadelphia for the purpose of meeting Congress the 3d of next month.
Imperious circumstances alone can justify my absence from the seat of government, whilst Congress are in session; but if these, from the disposition of the people in the refractory counties, and the state of the information I expect to receive at the advanced posts, should appear to exist, the less must yield to the greater duties of my office, and I shall cross the mountains with the troops; if not, I shall place the command of the combined force under the orders of Governor Lee of Virginia, and repair to the seat of government."
We will here note that Lawrence Lewis, a son of Washington's sister, Mrs. Fielding Lewis, having caught the spirit of arms, accompanied Morgan as aide-de-camp, on this expedition; "The prompt zeal with which he volunteered into the service of his country was, doubtless, highly satisfactory to his uncle, with whom, it will be seen, he was a great favorite."
On the 9th of October Washington writes from Carlisle to the Secretary of State: "The insurgents are alarmed, but not yet brought to their proper senses. Every means is devised by them and their friends and associates, to induce a belief that there is no necessity for troops crossing the mountains; although we have information, at the same time, that part of the people there are obliged to embody themselves, to repel the insults of another part.
ALARM OF THE INSURGENTS.
On the 10th, the Pennsylvania troops set out from Carlisle for their rendezvous at Bedford, and Washington proceeded to Williamsport, thence to go on to Fort Cumberland, the rendezvous of the Virginia and Maryland troops. He arrived at the latter place on the 16th of October, and found a respectable force assembled from those States, and learnt that fifteen hundred more from Virginia were at hand. All accounts agreed that the insurgents were greatly alarmed at the serious appearance of things. "I believe," writes Washington, "the eyes of all the well-disposed people of this country will soon be opened, and that they will clearly see the tendency, if not the design, of the leader of these self-created societies. As far as I have heard them spoken of, it is with strong reprobation.”
At Bedford he arranged matters and settled a plan
of military operations. The Governors of Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, were at the head of the troops of their respective States, but Governor Lee was to have the general command. This done, Washington prepared to shape his course for Philadelphia-" but not," says he indignantly, "because the impertinence of Mr. Bache, or his correspondent, has undertaken to pronounce that I cannot, constitutionally, command the army, whilst Congress is in session."
In a letter to Governor Lee, on leaving him in command, he conveyed to the army the very high sense he entertained" of the enlightened and patriotic zeal for the constitution and the laws which had led them cheerfully to quit their families, homes, and the comforts of private life, to undertake, and thus far to perform, a long and fatiguing march, and to encounter and endure the hardships and privations of a military life."
"No citizen of the United States," observes he, can ever be engaged in a service more important to their country. It is nothing less than to consolidate and to preserve the blessings of that revolution which, at much expense of blood and treasure, constituted us a free and independent nation."
His parting admonition is-" that every officer and soldier will constantly bear in mind, that he comes to support the laws, and that it would be peculiarly unbecoming in him to be, in any way, the infractor of them; that the essential principles of a free government confine the province of the military when called forth on such occasions, to these two objects: first, to combat and subdue all who may be found in arms in opposition to the national will and authority; secondly,