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attempts to carry the place by assault and stratagem, and rendered it necessary for soldiers, sailors, marines, and even judges and other civil officers to mount guard.* One officer declares, in a letter, that for eighty successive nights he slept in his clothes, to be ready in case of alarm.

All this, too, was effected by a handful of men, exposed in open encampments to the rigors of a Canadian winter. If in truth they were boasters, it must be allowed their deeds were equal to their words.

The Americans were in no condition to withstand Carleton's unlooked-for attack. They had no intrenchments, and could not muster three hundred men at any point. A precipitate retreat was the consequence, in which baggage, artillery, every thing was abandoned. Even the sick were left behind; many of whom crawled away from the camp hospitals, and took refuge in the woods, or among the Canadian peasantry.

General Carleton did not think it prudent to engage in a pursuit with his newly landed troops. He treated the prisoners with great humanity, and caused the sick to be sought out in their hiding-places, and brought to the general hospitals; with assurances that, when healed, they should have liberty to return to their homes.

General Thomas came to a halt at Point Deschambault, about sixty miles above Quebec, and called a council of war to consider what was to be done. The enemy's ships were hastening up the St. Lawrence; some were already but two or three leagues distant. The camp was without cannon; powder, forwarded by General Schuyler, had fallen into the enemy's hands; there were not provisions enough to subsist the army for more than two or three days; the men-of-war, too, might run up the river, intercept all their resources, and reduce them to the same extremity they had experienced before Quebec. It was resolved, therefore, to ascend the river still further.

General Thomas, however, determined to send forward the invalids, but to remain at Point Deschambault, with about five hundred men, until he should receive orders from Montreal, and learn whether such supplies could be forwarded immediately as would enable him to defend his position. t

The despatches of General Thomas, setting

Carleton to Lord George Germaine, May 14. ↑ General Thomas to Washington, May 8th.


forth the disastrous state of affairs, had a disheartening effect on Schuyler, who feared the army would be obliged to abandon Canada. Washington, on the contrary, spoke cheeringly on the subject. "We must not despair. A manly and spirited opposition only can insure success, and prevent the enemy from improving the advantage they have obtained. ”*

He regretted that the troops had not been able to make a stand at Point Deschambault, but hoped they would maintain a post as far down the river as possible. The lower it was, the more important would be the advantages resulting from it, as all the country above would be favorable, and furnish assistance and support, while all below would necessarily be in the power of the enemy.

The tidings of the reverses in Canada and the retreat of the American army, had spread consternation throughout the New Hampshire Grants and the New England frontiers, which would now be laid open to invasion. Committees of towns and districts assembled in various places, to consult on the alarming state of affairs. In a time of adversity, it relieves the public mind to have some individual on whom to charge its disasters. General Schuyler, at present, was to be the victim. We have already noticed the prejudice and ill will, on the part of the New England people, which had harassed him throughout the campaign, and nearly driven him from the service. His enemies now stigmatized him as the cause of the late reverses. He had neglected, they said, to forward reinforcements and supplies to the army in Canada. His magnanimity in suffering Sir John Johnson to go at large, while in his power, was again misconstrued into a crime: he had thus enabled that dangerous man to renew his hostilities. Finally, it was insinuated that he was untrue to his country, if not positively leagued with her enemies.

These imputations were not generally advanced; and when advanced, were not generally countenanced; but a committee of King's County appears to have given them credence, addressing a letter to the commander-in-chief on the subject, accompanied by documents.

Washington, to whom Schuyler's heart had been laid open throughout all its trials, and who knew its rectitude, received the letter and documents with indignation and disgust, and sent copies of them to the general. "From these,"

* Washington to Seluyler, May 17.





said he, "you will readily discover the diaboli- | with immortal honor, to the latest posterity, cal and insidious arts and schemes carrying on by as one of the great pillars of the American the tories and friends of government to raise dis- cause." trust, dissensions, and divisions among us. Having the utmost confidence in your integrity, and the most incontestable proof of your great attachment to our common country and its interests, I could not but look upon the charge against you with an eye of disbelief, and sentiments of detestation and abhorrence; nor should I have troubled with the matter, had I not been informed that copies were sent to different committees, and to Governor Trumbull, which I conceived would get abroad, and that you, should you find I had been furnished with them, would consider my suppressing them as an evidence of my belief, or at best of my doubts, of the charges."*


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We will go forward, and give the sequel of this matter. While the imputations in question had merely floated in public rumor, Schuyler had taken no notice of them; "but it is now,' writes he in reply to Washington, "a duty which I owe myself and my country, to detect the scoundrels, and the only means of doing this is by requesting that an immediate inquiry be made into the matter; when I trust it will appear that it was more a scheme calculated to ruin me, than to disunite and create jealousies in the friends of America. Your Excellency will, therefore, please to order a court of inquiry the soonest possible; for I cannot sit easy under such an infamous imputation; since, on this extensive continent, numbers of the most respectable characters may not know what your Excellency and Congress do of my principles and exertions in the common cause."

He further adds: "I am informed by persons of good credit, that about one hundred persons, living on what are commonly called the New Hampshire Grants, have had a design to seize me as a tory, and perhaps still have. There never was a man so infamously scandalized and ill-treated as I am."

We need only add, that the Berkshire committees, which in a time of agitation and alarm had hastily given countenance to these imputations, investigated them deliberately in their cooler moments, and acknowledged, in a letter to Washington, that they were satisfied their suspicions respecting General Schuyler were wholly groundless. "We sincerely hope," added they, "his name may be handed down,

* Washington to Schuyler, May 21.

As the reverses in Canada would affect the fortunes of the Revolution elsewhere, Washington sent General Gates to lay the despatches concerning them, before Congress. "His military experience," said he, "and intimate acquaintance with the situation of our affairs, will enable him to give Congress the fullest satisfaction about the measures necessary to be adopted at this alarming crisis; and, with his zeal and attachment to the cause of America, he will have a claim to their notice and favors."

Scarce had Gates departed on his mission (May 19th), when Washington himself received a summons to Philadelphia, to advise with Congress concerning the opening campaign. He was informed also that Gates, on the 16th of May, had been promoted to the rank of majorgeneral, and Mifflin to that of brigadier-general, and a wish was intimated that they might take the command of Boston.

Washington prepared to proceed to Philadelphia. His general orders issued on the 19th of May, show the anxious situation of affairs at New York. In case of an alarm the respective regiments were to draw opposite to their encampments or quarters, until ordered to repair to the alarm posts. The alarm signals for regulars, militia, and the inhabitants of the city, were, in the day-time-two cannon fired from the rampart at Fort George, and a flag hoisted on the top of Washington's head-quarters. In the night-two cannon fired as above, and two lighted lanterns hoisted on the top of headquarters.*

The following statement of the batteries at New
York, we find dated May 22d:

The Grand Battery, on the south part of the town.
Fort George, immediately above it.

White Hall Battery, on the left of the Grand Battery. Oyster Battery, behind General Washington's headquarters.

Grenadier Battery, near the Brew House on the North

Jersey Battery, on the left of the Grenadier Battery.
Bayard's Hill Redoubt, on Bayard's Hill.

Spencer's Redoubt, on the hill where his brigade is encamped.


Waterbury's Battery (fascines), on a wharf below this

Badlam's Redoubt, on a hill near the Jews' burying ground.


ET. 44.]



In his parting instructions to Putnam, who, | vania, Delaware, and Maryland, and likewise as the oldest major-general in the city, would engaged until the 1st December, should be have the command during his absence, Wash- stationed in the Jerseys for the defence of the ington informed him of the intention of the Middle colonies. Washington was moreover Provincial Congress of New York to seize the empowered, in case of emergency, to call on principal tories, and disaffected persons in the the neighboring colonies for temporary aid with city, and the surrounding country, especially on their militia. Long Island, and authorized him to afford military aid, if required, to carry the same into execution. He was also to send Lord Stirling, Colonel Putnam the engineer, and Colonel Knox, if he could be spared, up to the Highlands, to examine the state of the forts and garrisons, and report what was necessary to put them in a posture of defence. Their garrisons were chiefly composed of parts of a regiment of New York troops, commanded by Colonel James Clinton, of Ulster County, and were said to be sufficient.

The general, accompanied by Mrs. Washington, departed from New York on the 21st of May, and they were invited by Mr. Hancock, the President of Congress, to be his guests during their sojourn at Philadelphia.

Lee, when he heard of Washington's visit there, augured good effects from it. "I am extremely glad, dear general," writes he, "that you are in Philadelphia, for their councils sometimes lack a little of military electricity."

Washington, in his conferences with Congress, appears to have furnished this electricity. He roundly expressed his conviction, that no accommodation could be effected with Great Britain, on acceptable terms. Ministerialists had declared in Parliament, that, the sword being drawn, the most coercive measures would be persevered in, until there was complete submission. The recent subsidizing of foreign | troops was a part of this policy, and indicated unsparing hostility. A protracted war, therefore, was inevitable; but it would be impossible to carry it on successfully, with the scanty force actually embodied, and with transient enlist ments of militia.

In consequence of his representations, resolutions were passed in Congress that soldiers should be enlisted for three years, with a bounty of ten dollars for each recruit; that the army at New York should be reinforced until the 1st of December, with thirteen thousand eight hundred militia; that gondolas and firerafts should be built, to prevent the men-of-war and enemy's ships from coming into New York Bay, or the Narrows; and that a flying camp of ten thousand militia furuished by Pennsyl

Another result of his conferences with Congress was the establishment of a war office. Military affairs had hitherto been referred in Congress to committees casually appointed, and had consequently been subject to great irregularity and neglect. Henceforth a permanent committee, entitled the Board of War and Ordnance, was to take cognizance of them. The first board was composed of five members; John Adams, Colonel Benjamin Harrison, Roger Sherman, James Wilson, and Edward Rutledge; with Richard Peters as secretary. It went into operation on the 12th of June.

While at Philadelphia, Washington had frequent consultations with George Clinton, one of the delegates from New York, concerning the interior defences of that province, especially those connected with the security of the Highlands of the IIudson, where part of the regiment of Colonel James Clinton, the brother of the delegate, was stationed. The important part which these brothers were soon to act in the military affairs of that province, and ultimately in its political history, entitles them to a special notice.

They were of the old Clinton stock of England; being descended from General James Clinton, an adherent of royalty in the time of the civil wars, but who passed over to Ireland, after the death of Charles I. Their father, Charles Clinton, grandson of the general, emigrated to America in 1729, and settled in Ulster, now Orange County, just above the Highlands. of the Hudson. Though not more than fifty miles from the city of New York, it was at that time on the borders of a wilderness, where every house had at times to be a fortress. Charles Clinton, like most men on our savage frontier in those days, was a warrior by necessity, if not by choice. He took an active part in Indian and French wars, commanded a provincial regiment stationed at Fort IIerkimer, joined in the expedition under General Bradstreet, when it passed up the valley of the Mohawk, and was present at the capture of Fort Frontenac. His sons, James and George, one twenty, the other seventeen years of age, served in the same campaign, the one as captain, the other as lieu




tenant; thus taking an early lesson in that school of American soldiers, the French war.

James, whose propensities were always military, continued in the provincial army until the close of that war; and afterwards when settled on an estate in Ulster County, was able and active in organizing its militia. George applied himself to the law, and became successful at the bar in the same county. Their father, having laid aside the sword, occupied for many years, with discernment and integrity, the honorable station of Judge of the Court of Common Pleas. He died in Ulster County, in 1773, in the eightythird year of his age, "in full view of that revolution in which his sons were to act distinguished parts." With his latest breath he charged them "to stand by the liberties of their country."

They needed no such admonition. From the very first, they had been heart and hand in the cause. George had championed it for years in the New York legislature, signalizing himself by his zeal as one of an intrepid minority in opposing ministerial oppression. He had but recently taken his seat as delegate to the Continental Congress.

James Clinton, appointed colonel on the 30th of June, 1775, had served with his regiment of New York troops under Montgomery at the siege of St. Johns, and the capture of Montreal, after which he had returned home. He had subsequently been appointed to the command of a regiment in one of the four battalions raised for the defence of New York. We shall soon have occasion to speak further of these patriot brothers.

The prevalence of the smallpox had frequently rendered Washington uneasy on Mrs. Washington's account during her visits to the army; he was relieved, therefore, by her submitting to inoculation during their sojourn in Philadelphia, and having a very favorable time.

He was gratified, also, by procuring the appointment of his late secretary, Joseph Reed, to the post of adjutant-general, vacated by the promotion of General Gates, thus placing him once more by his side.


DESPATCHES from Canada continued to be disastrous. General Arnold, who was in comnaud at Montreal, had established a post on the St. Lawrence, about forty miles above that


place, on a point of land called the Cedars; where he had stationed Colonel Bedel with about four hundred men to prevent goods being sent to the enemy in the upper country, and to guard against surprise from them, or their Indians.

In the latter part of May, Colonel Bedel received intelligence that a large body of British, Canadians, and Indians, under the command of Captain Forster, were coming down from Oswegatchie to attack him. Leaving Major Butterfield in command of the post, he hastened down to Montreal to obtain reinforcements. Arnold immediately detached one hundred men, under Major Shelburne, and prepared to follow in person, with a much greater force. In the mean time, the post at the Cedars had been besieged, and Major Butterfield intimidated into a surrender, by a threat from Captain Forster, that resistance would provoke a massacre of his whole garrison by the Indians. The reinforce, ments under Major Shelburne were assailed within four miles of the Cedars, by a large party of savages, and captured, after a sharp skirmish, in which several were killed on both sides.

Arnold received word of these disasters while on the march. He instantly sent forward some Caughnawaga Indians, to overtake the savages, and demand a surrender of the prisoners; with a threat that, in case of a refusal, and that any of them were murdered, he would sacritice every Indian who fell into his hands, and would follow the offenders to their towns, and destroy them by fire and sword. He now embarked four hundred of his men in bateaux, and pushed on with the remainder by land. Arriving at St. Ann's above the rapids of the St. Lawrence, he discovered several of the enemy's bateaux, taking the prisoners off from the island, a league distant. It was a tormenting sight, as it was not in his power to relieve them. His bateaux were a league behind, coming up the rapids very slowly. He sent several expresses to hurry them. It was sunset before they arrived, and he could embark all his people; in the mean time, his Cauglinawaga messengers returned with an answer from the savages. They had five hundred prisoners collected together, they said, at Quinze Chiens, where they were posted; should he offer to land and attack them, they would kill every prisoner, and give no quarter to any who should fall into their hands thereafter.

"Words cannot express my feelings," writes

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ET. 44]



Arnold, "at the delivery of this message. Torn | will be in our power to take ample vengeance, or nobly fall in the attempt." *

by the conflicting passions of revenge and humanity; a sufficient force to take ample revenge, raging for action, urged me on one hand; and humanity for five hundred unhappy wretches, who were on the point of being sacrificed, if our vengeance was not delayed, pleaded equally strong on the other." In this situation, he ordered the boats to row immediately for the island, whither he had seen the enemy taking their prisoners. Before he reached it, the savages had conveyed them all away, excepting five, whom he found naked, and almost starved, and one or two, whom, being unwell, they had butchered. Arnold now pushed for Quinze Chiens, about four miles distant, on the mainland. Here was the whole force of the enemy, civilized and savage, intrenched and fortified.

As Arnold approached, they opened a fire upon his boats, with small arms, and two brass six-pounders. He rowed near the land, without returning a shot. By this time it was too dark to distinguish any thing on shore, and being unacquainted with the ground, he judged it prudent to return to St. Johns.

The accounts which reached Washington of these affairs were vague and imperfect, and kept him for some days in painful suspense. The disasters at the Cedars were attributed entirely to the base and cowardly conduct of Bedel and Butterworth, and he wrote to Schuyler to have good courts appointed, and bring them, and every other officer guilty of misconduct, to trial.

"The situation of our affairs in Canada," observes he, "is truly alarming. I sincerely wish the next letters from the northward may not contain the melancholy advices of General Arnold's defeat, and the loss of Montreal. The most vigorous exertions will be necessary to retrieve our circumstances there, and I hope you will strain every nerve for that purpose. Unless it can be done now, Canada will be lost to us forever."

While his mind was agitated by these concerns, letters from Schuyler showed that mischief was brewing in another quarter.

Colonel Guy Johnson, accompanied by the Sachem Brant and the Butlers, had been holding councils with the Indians, and designed, it was said, to come back to the Mohawk country, at the head of a British and savage force. A correspondence was carried on between him and his cousin, Sir John Johnson, who was said to be preparing to co-operate with his Scotch dependants and Indian allies.

Here he called a council of war, and it was determined to attack the enemy early in the morning. In the course of the night, a flag was sent by Captain Forster, with articles for an exchange of prisoners, which had been entered into by him and Major Sherburne. As the terms were not equal, they were objected to by Arnold, and a day passed before they were adjusted. A cartel was then signed, by Considering this a breach of Sir John's pawhich the prisoners, consisting of two majors, role, Schuyler had sent Colonel Elias Dayton nine captains, twenty subalterns, and four hun- with a force to apprehend him. Sir John, with dred and forty-three privates, were to be ex- a number of his armed tenants, retreated for changed for an equal number of British prison-refuge among the Indians, on the borders of the ers of the same rank, and were to be sent to the south shore of the St. Lawrence, near Caughnawaga, whence to return to their homes. Nine days were allowed for the delivery of the prisoners, during which time hostilities should be suspended.

Arnold, in a letter to the commissioners of Congress then at Montreal, giving an account of this arrangement, expressed his indignation at the conduct of the king's officers, in employing savages to screen their butcheries, and suffering their prisoners to be killed in cold blood. "I intend being with you this evening," added he, "to consult on some effectual measures to take with these savages, and still more savage British troops, who are still at Quinze Chiens. As soon as our prisoners are released, I hope it

lakes. Dayton took temporary possession of Johnson Hall, placed guards about it, seized upon Sir John's papers, and read them in the presence of Lady Johnson, and subsequently conveyed her ladyship as a kind of hostage to Albany.

Shortly afterwards came further intelligence of the designs of the Johnsons. Sir John, with his Scotch warriors and Indian allies, was said to be actually coming down the valley of the Mohawk, bent on revenge, and prepared to lay every thing waste; and Schuyler collecting a force at Albany to oppose him. Washington instantly wrote to Schuyler, to detach Colonel Dayton with his regiment on that service, with

*Arnold to the Commis. of Cong. 27th May.

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