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complete regiment of cavalry from Ireland; some of whom, with one of the transports, had been captured on their passage. Both armies now moved towards the White Plains, a strong piece of ground where a large camp had been marked out, and was already occupied by a detachment of militia, sent for the particular purpose of guarding some magazines of provisions which had been collected there. The main body of the American troops formed a long line of intrenched camps, extending from twelve to thirteen miles, on the different heights from Valentine's Hill, near Kingsbridge, to the White Plains, fronting the British line of march, and the Brunx, which lay between them, so as to collect in full force at any point, as circumstances might require. The motions of the enemy were ansiously watched, not only for the purposes of security, and of avoiding a general action, but in order to seize every occasion which might present itself of engaging any of their outposts with advantage. While their army lay about New Rochelle, Major Rodgers, with his regiment, was advanced further eastward, to Mamara Neck, on the Sound, where he was believed to be in a great degree covered by the position of the other troops. An attempt was made to surprise him in the night, by a detachment which should pass between him and the main body of the British army, and, by a coup de main, bear off his whole corps.
Although the plan was well formed, and Major Rodgers was actually surprised, yet the attempt did not completely succeed. About sixty of the enemy were killed and taken; and about the same Ilumber of muskets, with several blankets, were brought off. The loss of the Americans was only two killed and eight or ten wounded : among the latter, was Major Green, of Virginia, a very brave officer, who led the advanced party, and who recuired a ball through his body.
Not long afterwards, a regiment of Pennsylvania ritlemien, under Colonel IIand, fell in with and en'gaged about an equal number of Ilcssian chasseurs, over whom they obtained some advantage.
The caution of the English General was increased by these evidences of enterprise in his adversary. His object seenis to have been to avoid skirmishing, and to bring on a general action, if that could be effected under favourable circumstances; if not, he knew weil the approaching dissolution of the american army, and calculated, not without reason, to derive from that event nearly all the advantages of a victory. He proceeded, therefore, slowly ; his marches were in close order; his encáipments compact, and well guarded with artillery; anci the utmost circumspection was used not to expose any part which might be vulnerable,
As the sick and baggage rcached a place of safety, General Washington gradually drew in his
out-posts, and took possession of the heights on the east side of the Brunx, fronting the head of the enemy's columns. The next day he was joined by Gencral Lee, who, with very considerable address, had brought up the rear division, after the sick and the whole baggage of the army had been secured; an operation the more difficult, as the deficiency of teams was very great; in consequence of which, a large portion of the labour usually performed by horses, or oxen, devolved on men.
General Washington was encamped on high broken grounds, with his right flank covered by the Brunx, which meandered so as also to cover the front of his right wing, which extended along the road leading down on the east side of that river, towards New Rochelle, as far as the brow of the hill where his centre was posted. His left, which formed almost a right angle with his centre, and was nearly parallel to his right, extended along the hills northwardly, so as to keep possession of the commanding ground, and secure a retreat, should it be necessary, from his present position, to one still more advantageous in his rcar.
On the right of the army, and on the west side of the Brunx, about one mile from canıp, on the road leading from the North River, was a hill, of which General M.Dougal was ordered to take possession, for the purpose of covering the right Dank. His detaclıment consisted of about sixteen
hundred men, principally militia, and his com. munication with the main army was perfectly open, that part of the river being every where passable without any difficulty. .
Hasty intrenchments were thrown up to strengthen, as much as time would admit, every part of the lines, and make them as defensible as possible.
The enemy, who had advanced from New Rochelle and Mamara Neck, and were within seven or eight miles of the White Plains, now made arrangements to attack General Washington in his camp. Early in the morning, they advanced in two columns, the right commanded by Sir Henry Clinton, and the left by General Knyphausen, accompanied by General Howe in person. Their advanced parties having encountered and driven in the patrols they fell in with on the march, their van appeared, about ten o'clock, in full view of the American lines; and a cannonade commenced, without much execution on either side.
The right of the enemy formed behind a rising ground about a mile in front of the camp, and extended from the road leading from Mamara Neck towards the Brunx; so that it was opposed to the centre of the American army.
On viewing General Washington's situation, General Howe determined to possess himself of the hill occupied by M.Dougal, which he consi
dered as important to the success of an attack on the centre and right of the American camp. He therefore directed Colonel Rawle, with a brigade of Hessians which he commanded, to cross the Brunx, and make a circuit, so as to gain a position from which he might annoy the right flank of General M.Dougal; while Brigadier General Leslie, with the second brigade of British troops, the Hessian grenadiers under Colonel Donop, and a Hessian battalion, should attack him in front. When Colonel Rawle had gained the position he had been ordered to take, the detachment under the command of General Leslie also crossed the Brunx, and commenced a very vigorous attack on the Americans * The militia immediately fled, but the attack was sustained by the regulars with great gallantry. . Colonel Smallwood's regiment of Maryland, and Colonel Reitzemar's of New York, advanced boldly towards the foot of the hill to meet them; but after a sharp encounter, those regiments were overpowered by numbers, and compelled to retreat. The enemy advanced with great resolution on the remaining part of M‘Dougal's forces, consisting of his own brigade, the Delaware battalion, and a small regiment of Cons necticut militia, who were soon driven from the hill, but who kept up for some time an irregular
* Letter of General Howe.