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river, placed his army on the Sampink, in sight of the enemy at Trenton, and ordered their tents to be pitched and their fires kindled. He had previously directed the militia to join him from below, by a night march, and had sent out videttes to ascertain and advise him of the situation of the enemy between Trenton and New Brunswick. His arrangements were so made as to furnish the information required in time to enable him to reach the point of attack during the first night, and before his object was discovered by the enemy. In the interval, his officers, most of whom were ignorant of his plan, looked at the scene with amazement.
In the evening, his videttes came in, and, from their reports, it was apparent that Princeton was the weakest point in the line of the enemy. A council of officers was then called, to whom his movement was explained, and the information just received, communicated.
The only question then proposed to the council was, as to the place where the attack should be made. On that subject there was but one opinion. Whether General St. Clair or General Mercer first named Princeton, is not known, nor is it of the least importance. It is enough to know that that question was the only one submitted; and that the evidence necessary to decide it, was before them. All other matters had been settled by the Commander-inchief in his own mind, and on his own responsibility.
The attack on Princeton, having been thus decided on, the little half clothed army of Washington, about midnight, silently withdrew from the shelter of their tents, in a cold winter night, and taking the Quaker road, because it was more circuitous, less traveled, and therefore afforded the greater prospect of avoiding discovery_arrived in sight of Princeton, fatigued and exhausted, at the first dawn of day. There they met two regiments of British troops, who had just commenced their march to Trenton. A severe conflict ensued, in which the Americans were repulsed and thrown into disorder. The Commander-in-chief, seeing his danger, and knowing that every thing was at stake, rode to the front, addressed his troops, and conjured them to follow him. Order was restored, and the Americans, seeing their leader in the foremost front of the battle, rushed to the rescue, and in turn repulsed the enemy, and compelled them to retreat in disorder.
On that occasion, Washington exposed his person to the heaviest fire of the enemy, during the whole conflict, directing every movement of his troops himself; and it was evident, that the inspiring influence of his example decided the fate of the battle.
It was afterwards ascertained from the inhabitants of Trenton, that the first knowledge of the movement of the American army from their encampment on the Sampink, was communicated to them by the report of the American cannon from Princeton—Washington having taken the precaution to leave his tents standing, with a small detachment, to perform the ceremony of relieving guard, and replenishing the fires during the night.
The attempt to transfer the laurels of Washington to the brow of Mercer, is based on an allegation, that on the evening of the 2nd of January, in the board of officers then convened, “General Mercer first made the bold proposal to order up the Philadelphia militia, and make a night march on Princeton."
Now it appears, from Washington's official letter to Congress, that he had previously ordered them up—that they had actually joined the army on the night of the 1st, and were in camp, when, it is said, the proposition of General Mercer was made.
The claims which have been set up by the friends of different officers, to the honor of originating the plan of saving the army on that occasion, is sufficient of itself to discredit the story. If a proposition of that character had been made, the mover would have been known-his identity could not have been mistaken; and he would have claimed his reward. The allegation presupposes that the entire plan of the Commander-in-chief, was concerted by his officers, after he had crossed the river, and placed himself in front of a vastly superior enemy, knowing that a retreat was impossible.
The fact was not so—his plan was his own-it was conceived in his own mind, on the west bank of the Delaware
-was communicated to his officers on the bank of the Sampink, and manifestly saved his army, and secured the independence of his country.
Population of the Territory in 1795-6.- Description of Cincinnati at that
time.-Progress of settlement from 1788 to 1800.—Public buildings. -So. cial influence of the garrison.-Ordinance of 1787.-Its provisions.-Appointment of officers under it.— Treaty of Fort Harmar.-Re-organization of the Territorial Government.--Legislation of the Governor and Judges.The Maxwell Code.
In the winter of 1795-6, Governor St. Clair and Judge Turner, who had recently visited the white settlements in the Territory, estimated their population at fifteen thousand souls, including men, women and children. At that time, Cincinnati was a small village of log cabins, including about fifteen rough, unfinished, frame houses, with stone chimneys. Not a brick had then been seen in the place, where now so many elegant edifices present themselves to the eye; and where a population is found, estimated at eighty thousand souls.
The city stands on a lower and an upper plane. The former rises about sixty feet above low water mark, and extends back from the river, about sixty-five or seventy rods. The latter is about forty feet higher than the former, and extends in the same direction, an average distance of about a mile and a half. When the town was laid out, and for several years after, the surface of the ground, at the base of the upper level, was lower than on the margin of