Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

for its relief,' is so far from being true, that, 1st. The enemy is not nor ever was in the heart of the country, having only molested the frontier settlements by their parties. 2dly. More is done for the relief and defence of the country, without any assistance from the crown, than is done perhaps by any other colony in America; there having been, soon after the war broke out, the following forts erected at the province expense, in a line to cover the frontier, namely, Henshaw's Fort on Delaware, Fort Hamilton, Fort Norris, Fort Allen, Fort Franklin, Fort Lebanon, Fort William Henry, Fort Augusta, Fort Halifax, Fort Granville, Fort Shirley, Fort Littleton, and Shippensburg Fort, besides several smaller stockades and places of defence, garrisoned by troops in the pay of the province; under whose protection the inhabitants, who at first abandoned their frontier settlements, returned generally to their habitations, and many yet continue, though not without some danger, to cultivate their lands. By these Pennsylvania troops, under Colonel Armstrong, the greatest blow was given to the enemy last year on the Ohio, that they have received during the war, in burning and destroying the Indian town of Kittanning, and killing their great Captain Jacobs, with many other Indians, and recovering a number of captives of their own and the neighbouring provinces. Besides the garrisons in the forts, eleven hundred soldiers are maintained on the frontier in pay, being armed and accoutred, by the province, as ranging companies. And at Philadelphia fifteen iron cannon, eighteen-pounders, were last year purchased in England and added to the fifty they had before, either mounted on their batteries, or ready to be mounted, besides a train of artillery, being new brass field-pieces, twelve and six pounders, with all their appurtenances in extreme good order, and a magazine stored with ammunition, a quantity of large bomb-shells, and above two thousand new small arms lately procured, exclusive of those in the hands of the people. They have likewise this summer fitted out a twenty-gun province ship of war, to scour the coast of privateers, and protect the trade of that and the neighbouring provinces, which is more than any other colony to the southward of New England has done. Penn sylvania also by its situation covers the greatest part of New Jersey, all the government of the Delaware Counties, and great part of Maryland, from the incursions of the Indians, without receiving any contribution from those colonies, or the mother country, towards the expense.

"The above are facts, consistent with the knowledge of the subscriber, who but lately left Philadelphia, is now in London, is not nor ever was a Quaker, nor writes this at the request of any Qua

ker; but purely to do justice to a province and people of late frequently abused in nameless papers and pamphlets published in England. And he hereby calls upon the writer of that article of news to produce the letters out of which, he says, he has drawn those calumnies and falsehoods, or to take the shame to himself. "WILLIAM FRANKLIN.

"Pennsylvania Coffee-House, London,
"September 16th, 1757."

To what is said in the foregoing letter, concerning Colonel Armstrong's expedition to Kittanning, it may not be amiss to add, for the information of the reader, that it was with no small difficulty the commissioners, who were joined with the governor in the disposition of the money granted for the war, obtained the employing a part of the provincial forces as rangers. They repeatedly remonstrated to the governor, that the only effectual manner of carrying on a war with Indians was to fight them in their own way, that is, to send parties frequently into the Indian country to surprise them in their hunting and fishing, destroy their cornfields, burn their habitations, and, by thus continually harassing them, oblige them either to sue for peace, or retire farther into the country. The experience of many years' Indian war in New England was in favor of this measure. The governor himself could not but acknowledge its expediency.

There were motives, however, which, with him, outweighed all other considerations, and induced him, though publicly to approve, yet secretly to decline, carrying it into execution. A militia law was the grand object he had in view, in which he aimed to have the sole nomination of all the officers. These were of course to be proprietary minions and dependents, who, by means of their power, were to awe and influence the elections, and make a change in the assembly; for drafts of such as were most likely to give opposition might easily be made and sent to garrison the frontier. Should therefore the commissioners' scheme of carrying the war into the enemy's country be attended with success, and a stop be thereby put to their future incursions, the governor's main pretext for a militia (which was, the enabling him to defend the frontier,) would of consequence have no longer any appearance of weight. The commissioners, notwithstanding, obstinately persevered in urging, that parties should be sent out in the manner they recommended. The governor was at length obliged to consent, and give orders to Colonel Armstrong for that purpose. Underhand measures seem, however, to have been taken to render this project fruitless.

VOL. III.

72

vv *

Such delays were given, from time to time, to the march of the forces, after the intention of the undertaking was publicly known (which by the by was to have been kept a secret), that the enemy might easily have received intelligence of our designs; and, moreover, such a considerable number of men were added to the party, as rendered it highly improbable they should reach the place of their destination undiscovered, upon which depended the whole of their success. By great good luck, they nevertheless unexpectedly arrived at Kittanning and succeeded as above. Encouraged by this fortunate event of their first attempt, the commissioners earnestly pressed that this blow might be followed by another of the same kind, so that the enemy might be kept in continual apprehensions of danger. But these encouragements to the commissioners, to persist in their plan of operations, were inducements with the new governor, as they had been with his predecessor, to evade a compliance.

The darling project of a militia law was of more consequence than the preservation of the blood and treasure of people, with whom he had no natural connexion. And the result is, that, notwithstanding the commissioners have over and over strenuously endeavoured to have parties of rangers sent again into the enemy's country, they have never since been able to prevail with the governor to send them. On the contrary, though they could furnish ten parties for one of the Indians, the forces have been confined within the forts, taught regular military discipline (which is in fact undis ciplining them for Indian war), and allowed to do scarce any thing but garrison duty. In the mean time the Indians have been suffered to come down between the forts, murder and scalp the inhabitants, and burn and destroy their settlements, with impunity. That a militia, had the governor such a one as he wishes, could not prevent these outrages, is obvious to every man of common understanding. Frequent trials of this have been made in Virginia, and other governments, where militias have been long in use. The conse quence of which was, that, after the governors had, upon the news of any incursions of the enemy, taken the inhabitants from their several businesses and occupations (oftentimes farmers in the midst of harvest), furnished provisions and other necessaries, and marched them, at a great expense, to the place attacked, it was found that the enemy were fled, and perhaps doing mischief in another part of the frontier, at fifty or an hundred miles' distance. The people therefore say with truth, that it would be far less expensive and inconvenient to them, to raise and pay a number of rangers to

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

be continually employed in that service. And it is certain, that, were but a few rangers properly employed, they would be more effectual in subduing such an enemy, than all the militia or regular forces on the continent of America. The sending of these against scouting parties of Indians, being, as the proverb has it, "setting a cow to catch a hare."

No. IV.

ACCOUNT OF SUNDRY SUMS OF MONEY PAID BY THE PROVINCE
OF PENNSYLVANIA FOR HIS MAJESTY'S SERVICE, SINCE THE
COMMENCEMENT OF HOSTILITIES BY THE FRENCH IN NORTH
AMERICA, EXCLUSIVE OF THE GENERAL CONTINGENT EX-
PENSES OF THE GOVERNMENT, WHICH HAVE FROM THAT
TIME INCREASED VERY CONSIDERABLY.

EXTRACTED FROM THE JOURNALS OF THE ASSEMBLY.

1755.

1754 FOR provisions supplied the King's forces
and under the command of General Braddock,
for opening and clearing a road towards the
Ohio, and for establishing a post between
Winchester in Virginia and Philadelphia,
for the use of the army, at the request of
the said general,
For provisions supplied the New England,
and New York forces under General
Johnson,

For clothing sent the forces under General
Shirley, .

For presents to the Six Nations and other In-
dians in alliance with the crown of Great
Britain, and the expenses attending two
treaties held with them for securing them
to the British interest,

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Pennsylva. curr.

£8,195 14 8

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

2,023 5 0

Carried over £20,733 9 9

[ocr errors]

Pennsylva. curr.

Brought over £20,733 9 9 For maintenance of the Ohio and other western Indians, who had taken refuge in Pennsylvania; French deserters; soldiers' wives belonging to Braddock's army; arms and ammunition delivered to such of the frontier inhabitants as were not able to purchase any for their defence; relief and support of sundry of said inhabitants, who were driven from their plantations by the enemy; and for expresses and other purposes for his Majesty's service,

[ocr errors]

[The above sums were paid out of the treasury and loan-office, and by money borrowed on the credit of the House of Assembly, before the governor could be prevailed on to pass any bills for granting an aid to his Majesty.] 1756. For raising, paying, and maintaining forces; building forts; maintaining and treating with the King's Indian allies; support of French neutrals, sent from Nova Scotia ; billeting and supplying with necessaries the King's regular forces; and other purposes for his Majesty's service, as recommended by his ministers. [By two acts of assembly, £60,000 and £ 30,000.] 1757. For ditto by another act of assembly, 1759. For ditto by ditto. [Note, 2,700 men were raised and employed this year in his Majesty's service, by the province of Pennsylvania, in pursuance of Mr. Secretary Pitt's letter.] For support of a ship of war for protection of trade, (by a duty on tonnage, &c.) for a six months' cruise, .

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

For interest paid by the province for money
borrowed for his Majesty's service on the
credit of the assembly; the charges at-
tending the printing and signing the paper

5,653 13 2

90,000 0 0

100,000 0 0

100,000 0 0

6,425 15 0

Carried over £322,812 17 11

« ZurückWeiter »