Abbildungen der Seite

The entertainment was highly elegant. A full length picture of gen. Washington, presented to the count by Mr. Hancock, was placed in the center of the upper side of the room, and the frame of it was covered with laurels. The count having made this public return for the personal civilities he had received from numbers secured himself from all liableness to detention by points of honor : from a threated detention of another nature, he had been happily relieved in season. It was generally expected from the scarceness of provisions of all sorts at Boston and the nieghborhood, that he would have encountered great difficulties, if not actual distress. The impracticability of victuailing his fleet at ... that port was dreaded, even the subsisting of it was doubted.— But he was freed from these apprehensions by a singular fortune. "The New-England cruisers took such a number of provision vessels on their way from Europe to New-York, as not only supplied the wants of the French, but furnished an overplus sufficient to reduce the rates of the markets at Boston. This seasonable supply occasioned great triumph among the inhabitants. The count being in hope of Sailing within a few days, published a declaration to be spread among the French Canadians, and address. £d them in the name of their ancient master the French king.— '1 he design of it was to recal their affection to the ancient government and to revive all the national attachmeats of that people, thereby to prepare them for an invasion either from orance or America, and to raise their expectations of no distant change of masters. Admiral Byron having repaired, his fleet, appeared off Boston bay , but had not cruised there long before he was overtaken by a violent storm, in which the ships again suffered so much, that they were glad to get into shelter at Rhode-Island. The Somerset of 64 guns not being able to clear Cape Cod, run ashore and fell into the hands of the Bay-men, who saved her guns and many valuable articles. When the storm ended, the wind settled in the north-west, and blew fair for carrying the French fleet to the West-Indies. Count d’Estaing seized the opportunity, and sailed from Boston [Nov. 3.} with his ships thoroughly repaired, clean, and well victualled, and with his foces in full health and vigor. - . . The behaviour of the French officers and sailers, the whole time that their fleet lay in port, was remarkably good, far beyond any thing of the kind ever before, when several men of war were present. The count made a point of always lying on board at night. The officers conducted with the greatest regularity and decorum; but noticed a certain coolness in the gentiemen and ladies toward them, which was imputed to the want of so cordial an affection for France as what they had or - - tallie


tained for Great-Britain, and had not wholly laid aside ; but it was greatly owing to the successless expedition against Rhode-Island, and to what had been related concerning them respecting that affair. The common sailors were peaceably inclined ; and engaged in no quarrels excepting what has been related, and one at night of October the 5th, in no wise material; and in neither .# these do they appear to have been the aggressors.They neither abused nor injured the town's-people ; nor made themselves a nuisence by their excesses and disorderly conduct. An opportunity at length offers for mentioning some detached articles. - The Raleigh Frigate, capt. John Barry, sailed from Boston: the 25th of September, and was taken on the 29th, after bravely engaging for some time, and then being run on an island with a view to escape falling into the hands of two British men of War. . . . The Pigot schooner, of eight twelve-pounders and forty-five men, laying near Howland's ferry on the eastern side of Rhode

Island, a plan was laid for taking her. Major Talbot, with a number of troops, sailed on the 25th of October from Provi

dence on board a small vessel. It was not till the 28th at night, that he ran down through Howland's ferry; when drifting af. ter that under bare poles, for fear that the fort on Rhode-Island should fire upon him and alarm the Pigot, he passed on undiscovered; and at half past one in the morning of the 29th got sight of the schooner. When but at a small distance from her,

she hailed him; and receiving no satifactory answer, her marines.

fired upon him from her quarter deck. He reserved his fire till

he had run his jib-boom through her fore shrouds, when he fired.

some cannon and threw in such a volley of musketry, loaded with bullets and buck-shot, that the men on deck immediately ran below begging for quarters, and they that were below never made their appearance on deck. The consequence was, his men ran.

out upon the jib-boom and boarded her, without the loss of a

men. The captain of the Pigot behaved with the greatest resolution, and defended his vessel in his shirt and drawers for some

time, without a single soul of his crew to assist him. Major Talbot's gunnel was eight feet lower than the nettings of the

schooner. He carried her off with him, and ran to Stonnington. Congress as a reward of his merit, and for the encouragement of a spirit of enterprise, have presented him with the commission of lieutenant-colonel. The Massachusetts general court passed an act in their first session to prevent the return to this state of certain persons therein named, and others who have left the state, or either of the

United States, and joined the British. There are about 30O named in it. In case they return, they are to Be taken up and secured, till they can be transported to some place within the British dominions or in the possession of the British forces.— Should diey return after transportation, without liberty first obtained from the general court, they are to suffer death. Among the persons thus interdicted, it'is to be'supp.osed there are many whose greatest crime is that of having left the country and preferred Britain for their place of residence, that so they might be exempted from the ravages and terrors of war.

The state of Virginia has passed an act for sequestering British property, and enabling those indebted to British subjects trf pay off such debts by placing the money for the discharge of the same, in the loan-office of the commonwealth. : [Nov. 5.] General Gates arrived at Boston, having been directed forthwith to repair thither and take the command of the continental forced in the eastern district.

. The present narrative of American matters shall close with part of a letter,* written from Philadelphia, the 2Tth of August, .by a gentleman of (Eminence, to gov. Houston, of Georgia—• "Were I to unfold to you, Sir, the scenes of venality, peculation and fraud which I have discovered, the disclosure would astonish you; nor would you, Sir, be less astonished were I, by a detail which the occasion would require, to prove to you, that he must be a pitiful rogue who, when detected or suspected, •meets not with powerful advoca'.es among those, who, .in the present corrupt time, ought to exert all their powers in defence and support of these friend-plundered, much injured, and, I was going to say, sinking states. Don't apprehend, Sir, that I colour too high, 0r that any part of these intimations are the effect of rash judgment or despondency; I am warranted to say they are not; my opinion, my sentiments, are supported every day by the declaration of individuals; the difficulty lies in bringing men collectively to attack with vigor a proper object."

* Th'8 was a private letter j but wa> afterward publi/heJ In Riviogton's Royal <Jazetie, as written by the prelident of congrefs, Henry Laurens, efij. If wa« kacwa by feyeial to contain a ftrong mark oi authenticity—ihe truth.


[ocr errors][merged small]

THE present letter shall begin with an expedition through the remote and upper parts of Pennsylvania, on the 1st of October, under col. William Butler. It was directed not only against the Indians, but several considerable settlements belonging to the tories, become particularly obnoxious from the violence of the past hostilities. The party, which consisted of a Pennsylvania regiment, covered by riflemen and rangers, took its departure from Schoharie, and having gained the head of the HDelaware, marched down the river for two days; from whence turning off to the right, they struck across the mountains to the Susquehanna, which was the scene of action. They totally burat and destroyed both the Indian castles and villages in that'quarter and the other settlements; but the inhabitants, both tories and Indians, escaped. The destruction was extended for several miles on both sides the Susquehannah. The difficulties, distresses and dangers which the party encountered, required no small share of that fortitude and hardiness of body and mind, which can scarcely be acquired by any considerable number of men without long habitude, under certain marked circumstances of situation. They were obliged to carry six days provision on their backs; and thus loaded, continually to wade through rivers and creeks scarcely passable without any incumbrance, to men unused to such service. In these circumstances, after the toil of a hard march, they were obliged to endure chilly nights and heavy rains, without any mean for keeping even their arms dry. But these were small matters compared with the danger awaiting their return, and which they hardly escaped. This was the sudden risings of the creeks and the Susquehannah, occasioned by continual heavy rains, while they were still in the enemy's country, and with their provisions nearly expended. The last circumstance rendered their case desperate, so that though, on any other cccasion, the crossing of the Susquehannah, when so high, would have been deemed impracticable, it was successfully attempted by mounting the men on horses, which in some places were obliged to swim; and thus all the troops were safely transported, and by crossing the mountains, evaded two other dangerous places. They returned to Schoharie on the 16th, after having, with the greatest fortitude, surmounted every difficulty, and were, by order of the colonel, coul

complimented with the firing of thirteen rounds of cannon, and a feu-de-joie.

Mr. Governeur Morris having acquainted congress, that he had received'application from a person in New-York., to know whether lie mayj with safety to-.his person and property, continue in that city upon the evacuation thereof; and having further informed them that the said person is in a capacity to give useful intelligence, and probably will do it, if he receives assurances that it will be •reeommeded to the State of New-York to afford him .protection, they resolved, that the said G. Morris be empowered to give him such assurances, on condition that he. shall give ■intelligence of whatever may come to his knowledge relating to the numbers, movements and designs of the enemy. Henry Laurens, esq. having filled the station of president for one year «n the 3 lit of October, made his resignation, of the presidency,, lest any example taken from his. continuance might hereafter; become inconvenient. He was replaced by a unanimous vote. ; .Accounts have been .received, that commodure Evans, Ueiug dispatched, by adm. Montague, arrived on the 14th of September in, St- Peter's road, and sent to the governor of the small islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon, acquainting him that the FYencta had committed hostilities in America, and. that, therefore he demanded a surrender of the-islands : which was complied with, as there was no.force to make an effectual resistance. Thegovercor and his suite,, and the principle inhabitants, women and children amounting to 932, were embarked on board the vessel* found at St. Pierre's, and sent to France. ....

The French alliance has proved-the occasion of the British ministry's having ordered away a considerable part of their foive from New-York. The same day that count.d'Estaing sailed from Boston, [Nov. S.] commodore Hotham with two 64 gun ships, and three of 50, beside frigates and a bomb ketch, having under convoy transports containing 5000 British troops, commanded by gen.Grant,, left Sandy-Hook and steered lar tne West-Indies *hither the count went.

'-The chevalier de Maduitdu Plcssis, lient, col. of artillery in> the continental army, having expressed an apprehension that the war is near a conclusion in this country, and a desire of returning to France to offer his service to his prince, congress ordered that a written testimonial of the high sense they entertained Of his zeal,bravery and good conduct, should be given him. The committee upon the business, had resolved that a brevet commission of colonel should be granted him, which the congress, negatived two days before, as it was high time to cease larishingaway promotioas on foreigners. The. ambition of the n*.

~ tivei.

« ZurückWeiter »