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The British commander was, however, by no wards on the same mission, and it was determined means disposed to try again the fate of arms. that an attack should be made on the British force About midnight, after removing the wounded, he at Newport, in Rhode Island, by the French in continued his retreat with so much caution and concert with an American army under Greene, silence as to give no notice or alarm. At day Sullivan and Lafayette. Lord Howe sailed with break he was already so near the heights of Mid- his fleet to relieve General Pigot in his dangerous dletown, as to render pursuit useless. The Ame position, and thus every appearance seemed to inrican commander moved towards the North river, dicate the approach of a decisive conflict. Some after detaching a small force to hover around the unfortunate differences upon points of military British rear, while the enemy embarked at Sandy etiquette, arising between D’Estaing and Sullivan, Hook and proceeded to New York.
prevented the immediate disembarkation of the Thus terminated the battle of Monmouth, which French troops: the two fleets, after a series of was claimed as a victory by both parties, because manæuvres, were dispersed by a tempest, at the neither had gained any decisive advantage. Clin- very moment of engagement, and the next commuton effected his retreat and saved his baggage; but nication announced the intention of the allies to the Americans, after the check of Lee's van, re sail to Boston. The Americans were, in consepulsed the enemy, became in turn the assailants, quence, obliged to break up their positions and and were only prevented from continuing the en raise the siege; an operation which was not pergagement by the midnight retreat of the British. formed without some sharp though indecisive com« Never," said Lafayette, was General Wash- bats. ington greater in war than in this action. His The effects of these operations upon the feelings presence stopped the retreat-his dispositions fixed of the army and the people, created more disthe victory. His fine appearance on horseback-- quietude in the mind of Washington, than even the his calm courage, roused by the vexation of the failure of an expedition, in which success had been morning, gave him the interest calculated to ex- confidently and proudly expected. Animosities cite enthusiasm.” The American loss was eight had arisen between the military officers of the officers and sixty-one privates killed, and about allied powers, tending to jeopard every enterprise one hundred and sixty wounded. The English undertaken in concert; while the discontent of the army is known to have suffered more than double people had risen to such a head as to leave it doubtthe amount. In the course of their retreat, they ful whether the damages of the fleet could be relost about one hundred men in prisoners, and paired in Boston. The French also had their nearly one thousand deserters. The fiery insub- complaints of alleged injuries: “ They are ordination of General Lee afterwards overcame people," as was observed in a letter of the comthe reluctance of the commander-in-chief, and com- mander-in-chief to Sullivan, “old in war, very pelled the ordering of a court of inquiry, which strict in military etiquette, and apt to take fire condemned that officer to one year's suspension. when others seem scarcely warm." Washington This sentence was almost unanimously approved devoted his whole mind to the conciliation of these by Congress, while it gave great and general satis difficulties, and with the aid of Congress, his lafaction to the American army. A resolution of bours were finally crowned by the complete restoCongress was unanimously passed, thanking Wash- ration of that harmony which was so essentially ington for his activity, his distinguished exertions, necessary to success. and his great good conduct in the pursuit of the On the third of November, Count D'Estaing enemy, and the battle of Monmouth; he was re sailed with all the French forces for the West Indies: quested also to signify the gratitude of Congress to whither he was followed by five thousand men the officers and men who had deserved it by their under General Gray, with a strong convoy. In the valour and behaviour.
month of December the continental troops retired Intelligence was now received that the French into hut cantonments in Connecticut-on
both admiral, Count D'Estaing, had appeared off the sides of the North river about West Point-and at coast of Virginia with a fleet of twelve ships of Middlebrook. Their condition with respect to the line and six frigates, having on board a res. clothing was much improved by supplies from pectable body of land troops. The original plan France, and they were thus enabled to disregard of these allies had been to attack the British naval other inconveniences. Some few skirmishes had force in the Delaware, and to unite with Wash- occurred between parties of both armies. The ington in a general assault upon the lines at Phila- British succeeded in surprising Colonel Baylor's delphia. A passage unusually tempestuous and cavalry at Taupaun, where the bayonet was used protracted defeated this well conceived operation, with in human severity: Count Pulaski was also and probably saved the whole power of the British unexpectedly attacked in Jersey, and sustained commander.
On the part of the Americans, a body The chief anxiety of Congress was to secure the of chasseurs and yagers under Donop was defeated immediate co-operation of the European re-inforce. by Colonel Richard Butler. A British force comment. The American General despatched Colonel manded by Colonel Campbell, sailed under the esLaurens to the French fleet, for the purpose of cort of Commodore Hyde Parker, to act against communicating all necessary information, and con the southern states, where the climate admitted of certing the plan of movements with the conven- military operations: but the garrison left in New tional signals. Colonel Hamilton proceeded after. York was still too strong to encourage any enter
prise against that important position. Washing duced to a defensive warfare. Troops of both naton proceeded to Philadelphia, to hold a personal tions had been detached to the southern states, and conference with Congress on the general state of General Gates covered New England with about the army and the country. An expedition pro three thousand men. jected against Canada was abandoned in deference Towards the end of May 1779, Sir Henry Clinto his opinion, and all recommendations emanating ton commenced active operations by a partially from him commanded the most respectful con successful expedition up the Hudson. · The great sideration.
road offering the easiest communication between The preparations for the campaign of 1779 were the eastern and middle states, crosses that river at commenced under unfavourable auspices, in conse a place called King's Ferry, some miles below quence of the languor which began to spread itself West Point. The ferry is commanded on the west over the whole nation. A general belief prevailed by Stony Point, an elevated peninsula on which that the alliance with France had secured our in some works. were begun: on the east it is exposed dependence, and that all painful exertions were to a long flat neck of land called Verplank's Point, therefore rendered unnecessary.
This delusion where a small fort had been erected, called Fort never extended itself to the mind of the commander. Fayette, garrisoned by a company under Captain in-chief, who saw plainly how remote was the Armstrong. The British army, commanded by prospect of any peace that exacted so much from Clinton in person, and convoyed by Sir George the powerful empire of Great Britain. In a pri
In a pri. Collier, proceeded up the river, captured the povate letter to one of his friends, he thus expressed sition after some resistance, and completed the himself, “I have seen without despondency, even works at both forts; Stony Point in particular was for a moment, the hours which America has styled placed in a strong state of defence. The main her gloomy ones; but I have beheld no day since army was then withdrawn to Philipsburg without the commencement of hostilities, when I have further effort: but there can be no doubt, from the thought her liberties in such imminent danger as disproportionate means employer, that much more at present." “Do not, from a mistaken opinion had been contemplated by the British commander. that we are to sit down under our vine and our West Point had now become a most important own fig tree, let our hitherto noble struggle post to the American cause, on account of its comend in ignominy.” The usual difficulties pre mand of the navigation of the river: it was menaced sented themselves, in relation to bounties, enlist- by this armament and most probably owed its safety inents and state quotas; and yet such was the inert to the prompt operations of Washington, who had ness of Congress, that all measures were yet to be closely followed the enemy's movements, and so adopted for raising men, when the army should posted his army as to deter them from a further have been in full and active operation.
prosecution of the enterprise. The first enterprise proposed to Congress by the Clinton now resolved upon the invasion of Concommander-in-chief, was a decisive movement necticut; the refugee Governor Tryon, with a strong against the Indians, to punish the atrocities com corps of twenty six hundred men, was detached mitted in the course of the preceding year upon upon this service, which was conducted in a manner the inhabitants of the west, and to prevent future more resembling the maraud of banditti, than an incursions. The settlement of Wyoming in Penn operation of soldiers. Washington, on his part, sylvania, had been completely destroyed by a body approached King's Ferry, with an anxious resoluof tories and savages commanded by Colonel John tion to recover the captured posts. When his Butler and the celebrated Indian chief, Brandt: plans were matured, the execution was entrusted while in other parts of the frontier, the tomahawk to Anthony Wayne, who stormed Stony Point at and scalping knife had been employed with such night with fixed bayonets, and captured the whole fearful barbarity, as to render this expedition of British garrison without discharging a single mus. primary importance. The experience of Washing Fort Fayette was next attempted; but owing ton had abundantly taught him that an Indian war to those accidents which are.inseparable in war should never be defensive, and that to obtain peace, from the best devised projects, the breach advanced the dangers of the conflict and the ravages of a slowly. Time was thus afforded to Sir Henry hostile force must be carried into the heart of their Clinton, who, abandoning his designs on Connectiown settlements. A plan for surprising the towns of cut, marched directly to the Highlands and relieved the Onondagos was executed with equal ability and his garrison. As the occupation of Stony Point resuccess by Colonel Van Schaick. At the same quired fifteen hundred men, and the possession of time a large body of troops prepared to march Fort Fayette by the English rendered the post of into the other territories of the Six-Nations. This little value, Washington abandoned his brilliant expedition which was commanded by General Sul conquest. The two armies then cautiously observed livan, proved completely successful, and a severe each other; until at length, the British commander, chastisement was inflicted on all the tribes com wearied with inaction, retired to York Island, posing that great Indian confederacy.
finding that he could neither attack the Americans At the opening of the campaign, the British with a chance of success, nor draw them from their force under Sir Henry Clinton, was between sixteen positions into more favourable ground. He now and seventeen thousand strong: opposed to them occupied himself chiefly in strengthening his fortiwere about thirteen thousand Americans, cantoned fications, in anticipation of the projected departure on both sides of the North River, and of course re of large forces to the south.
The remainder of the summer of 1779 passed winter quarters (1779–80), were again of the most away in the northern states without further move distressing character. In order to preserve the ments. In Europe, after long diplomatic negotia. credit of the continental money, congress had resoltions and many fruitless attempts at mediation, the ved that the emission should never exceed two king of Spain declared his intention of taking part hundred millions: that amount was already expenin the war against Great Britain. This event was ded, and it was now proposed to substitute a system of extreme importance, because an union of the of requisitions of specific articles upon the several French and Spanish fleets promised a maritime
The commander-in-chief strongly resisted superiority in all parts of the ocean. At the this experiment; for he was fully persuaded that no proper season, the Americans formed their hutted war could be carried on upon any other than a camps in the various posts selected for winternational basis, and that the quolas of thirteen gov. quarters. The northern division, commanded by ernments could never be collected when they were General Heatli, was so cantoned as to protect West really wanted. In the mean time, the troops were Point and all the neighbouring country. The reduced first to half allowance, then to less; and southern or main division lay in the vicinity of finally when the commissary general declared himMorristown. The commander-in-chief was then self without supplies or credit, requisitions were obliged to resume his regular winter's employment reluctantly issued to the surrounding country. In of explaining to Congress the defects and insuffie consequence of these difficulties, the army remained ciencies of the existing military arrangements, and for several successive days without meat, and their of earnestly pressing for the supplies of men and pay was five months in arrear, with no early prosprovisions that must be necessary to the early pect of liquidation. It can be no matter of surcommencement of hostilities in the spring.
prise, therefore, that a mutiny broke out in two The inactivity of the northern armies gave an Connecticut regiments, which was suppressed with undivided interest to the military operations con- difficulty. The strength of the Americans was ducted in the southern states. It has already been thus paralyzed, and the exaggerated reports carried stated that a detachment under Colonel Campbell into New York, induced a general belief that they sailed from New York about the end of November were about to disband. By actual returns made on 1778; owing to the total want of preparation, Sa- the 3d of June, the army under Washington's immevannah and the whole state of Georgia fell an easy diate controul included only three thousand seven conquest to these troops, assisted by General Pre- hundred and sixty men, present and fit for dutyvost, who had moved northward from East Florida while on the 18th of the same monih, by the return for that purpose. South Carolina was defended of Sir Henry Clinton, the British force in New York by General Lincoln with great obstinacy and vari- counted twelve thousand regulars ready to be emous success, until the middle of September 1779, ployed in the field. when the arrival of Count D’Estaing changed the On the 6th of June, General Knyphausen had character of the operations and encouraged the made a descent upon Elizabethtown, by way of conallies to undertake the siege of Savannah. This firming and encouraging the supposed disaffection enterprise failed, owing to a hurried and prema- of the American troops. In this design he was ture attempt to carry the place by storm; but it soon satisfied that no success was attainable, and he was conducted with extreme gallantry and only retired to his place of landing, after exercising abandoned afier heavy losses. The French arma- much unnecessary severity upon the country and ment then sailed from the coast, in order to escape its inhabitants. Clinton resumed the design of the tempestuous season, the approach of which had offensive operations in New Jersey; but after some precipitated their operations.
severe fighting at Springfield with the corps of About the middle of February 1780, an expedi. General Greene, he also was induced to abandon tion from New York, under the command of Sir the project, and to withdraw the British army into Henry Clinton, entered the harbour of Charleston, Staten Island. The caution exhibited in these and it was now evident that overwhelming forces of operations by the Britislı commander, is perhaps to the enemy were about to undertake the subjugation be ascribed to the intelligence received that a of the south. After a vigorous and obstinate siege, French fleet and army might be immediately exCharleston fell, notwithstanding the reinforcements pected. forwarded to Lincoln by the American commander; A new impulse was now given to the activity of a few trisling skirmishes completed the conquest, Congress and of the several states. All felt the neand left South Carolina and Georgia in the almost cessity of turning the expected succours to the best undisturbed possession of the British. Clinton account, and the most munificent gists were therefore returned to New York in the beginning of June, contributed by patriotic citizens. An engagement having entrusted the southern command to Lord had been hastily entered into with the French amCornwallis with an army of four thousand men. bassador, that the troops of his sovereign should be
On the twenty-fifth of July, General Gates as- received by an army of twenty five thousand contisumed the command of the American forces in nentals, and that ample supplies for the combined the South, by selection of Congress. Within one forces should be laid up in magazines. Notwithmonth afterwards, the bloody and decisive battle standing all the exertions that were made, the arri. of Camden destroyed his army, and reduced the val of Count Rochambeau and his army at Newport, war in the Carolinas to a contest of partisans. in the month of July, found the Americans not only
The sufferings of the principal army in their unprepared for active operations, but without any
certainty as to the strength of the expected forces son. The plan was almost matured, when André, of the states.
returning from a personal conference within the The French General reported himself to Wash- American lines, was providentially captured, with ington as commander in chief, and requested orders all his private notes, by three militiamen, who resistwith a defined plan of operations. His troops were ed his bribes and promises with patriotic firmness. sent as auxiliaries, which, according to military Arnold immediately took refuge on board the Britusage, left the post of honour to the Americans. ish sloop of war, the Vulture. His unfortunate These instructions, so well calculated to preserve associate was brought before a court of general offithe harmony of the allied arms, were given by the cers, where his noble conduct deeply excited the King of France at the earnest instance of Lafayette. commiseration of the American public. The board, The natural demand of a sketch of the proposed while lamenting the stern necessities of duty, felt campaign, exposed Washington to a choice among themselves compelled to convict him as a spy, and many difficuliies, for it was impossible to decide to pronounce the sentence of death prescribed by safely, while his means of action were yet matters the usages of war. On no occasion had the comof hope and conjecture. The resolution adopted mander-in-chief to contend with equal reluctance, was such as he considered due to the honour of our than while resolving to sanction the award of the national engagements. He fixed upon the siege of court of inquiry. The public service left no alter. New York, and designated the 25th of August for native, and his country overcame all inferior conthe movement of the French. This plan was after- siderations. wards suspended, because its essential basis was The chivalrous generosity of Washington's chathe possession of maritime superiority, which was racter was exhibited in a small incident connected wrested from Admiral de Ternay by the junction with these transactions. Mrs Arnold was left by of the fleets of Arbuthnot and Graves, and the sub- her husband's flight, in the most distressing agonies. sequent arrival of Sir George Rodney. The French Every effort was made to overtake the traitor; but feet and army were then blockaded in Newport; as soon as his escape was ascertained, it was an. while Washington was fully employed in anxious nounced to the unfortunate lady in a respectful mes struggles against the accumulating embarrassments sage. It is honourable to the American character, of the commissariat, which threatened at every mo. that at this moment of excitement, Mrs Arnold was ment to dissolve his forces.
allowed to proceed to Philadelphia, to collect her The remainder of the campaign passed away, husband's property, and to rejoin him in New York, without presenting any active enterprize. The not only without the least interruption or insult, but Americans retired into winter quarters in the early with all the assistance that her convenience could part of December. The Pennsylvania line occupied require. à station near Morristown; the Jersey troops lay in the south, after the decisive victory of around Pompton; those from New England were Camden, Lord Cornwallis directed his views to the stationed on both sides of the Hudson, at and near conquest of North Carolina; but his plans were West Point; and the New York line continued at frequently retarded and frustrated by the successes Albany for the purpose of resisting any movement of Sumpter, Marion and other distinguished partifrom the side of Canada.
sans, and the indomitable courage of the inhabiThe summer of 1780 was marked by the fa- tants. Gates was removed by Congress from the mous treaty of armed neutrality, in which Den- command, which was then assumed by General mark, Sweden and Russia pledged themselves to Greene, on the special appointment of the coma combined assertion of certain maritime prin- mander-in-chief. The judicious dispositions of ciples, peculiarly obnoxious and dangerous to Great the new general were followed by the rout of Britain as a naval belligerent. Holland was about Tarlton at the spirited and successful battle of the to join the alliance, when a declaration of war by Cowpens. The efforts of Cornwallis to recover the the English ministry compelled her to take part prisoners and to attack the American army in among the declared confederates of the United detail, were foiled by Greene's celebrated retreat States.
into Virginia, where being joined by reinforceAbout the same time, the dangerous machinaments, he found himself strong enough to re-enter tions of private treason were added, in America, to North Carolina and to fight the battle of Guilford the ordinary perils and difficulties of war. Bene. Court-house. The heavy loss sustained in this dict Arnold, who had won by his courage and for action and the scantiness of supplies, compelled titude a high place in the esteem of the nation, was Cornwallis to abandon the upper country and finally entrusted with the important command of West to retreat to Wilmington on the coast. General Point. Pecuniary distress, produced by thought. Greene, who had hitherto preserved Virginia as the less prodigality, led a mind but weakly fortified by base of his operations, then formed the daring resohonourable principle, into the crime of peculation; lution of carrying the war into South Carolina; upon and the imminent danger of discovery next produ- which, after some hesitation, Cornwallis marched ced a traitorous correspondence with Sir Henry upon Virginia, where the traitor Arnold had already Clinton. Major John André, an aid-de-camp, to landed and commenced his work of invasion and the British commander and adjutant-general of the devastation. army, was the instrument employed in this negotia The winter of 1780–81, was again devoted by tion, the settled object of which was the surrender Washington to his regular negotiations with Conof the post and the capture of the American garri- gress for a better and more secure system of
enlistment and subsistence. He obtained at length depths of despair. His plans were regularly the vote of an army engaged for the whole war, formed and matured, so as to turn every posture of with the important encouragement of a half pay affairs to the best practical advantage. provision for the officers during life. The suffer When an official communication was received, ings of America would have been greatly abridged promising the early arrival of the Count De Grasse had these arrangements been made at the beginning with a large naval armament, Washington and of the contest; but such was the jealousy existing Rochambeau resolved to effect a junction and to against military power, that no influence less than operate against New York. That city was prothat of Washington, could have produced their tected by a force of 11,000 men, under Sir Henry adoption even at this stage of the revolution. Clinton. The prospect of a decisive blow which
Good measures tardily effected are rarely beiter would terminate this long and obstinate contest, than inferior substitutes. In the month of January excited many of the states to new exertions in 1781, the most disastrous consequences were order to raise the required supplies. Such, howapprehended from a general revolt of the Pennsyl- ever, was the low ebb of public credit, that without vania line and another among the troops of Jersey. the assistance and means of a private citizen, it is The first was appeased by concessions imprudently more than probable that the active operations of made by Congress to armed mutineers; the second, the campaign would have been totally disappointed. produced by the successful impunity of the former, That citizen was Robert Morris, a princely merwas quelled by the decision and vigorous severity chant, such as few countries have ever possessed, of the commander-in-chief. Sir Henry Clinton and one who united to immense wealth and credit, endeavoured to turn these movements to the advan- the talents and foresight of a statesman. tage of the royal cause; it was creditable to the On the sixth of July, the allied armies met at soldiers that they immediately arrested the British Dobbs's ferry on the North River. Washington emissaries, and scornfully rejected all proffer of had already begun to apprehend that his great plan assistance. The extreme distress of the army and was not within the range of possible accomplishthe growing discontent of the people sprang from ment; and he was combining a substitute in rapid the same cause; it was the system of forced requi- movements directed against the southern forces of sitions, without which no supplies could be obtained the enemy. This latter resolution was determined for the American forces.
by the arrival at New York of large reinforcements, The two armies were so strongly posted, and so
and the ascertained fact that the arrangements of nearly equal in point of strength, that no important the Count de Grasse would allow but a short time movements could be effected on either side. The for co-operation on the coasts of America. Laplans of Washington were therefore directed to the fayette was ordered to assume such a position as south, and to the possibility of striking a decisive would prevent Cornwallis from retreating to blow against the British army in Virginia. La. Charleston. He accordingly took post on James fayette marched with twelve hundred men to the River, while the British general fortified himself head of the Chesapeake, and though disappointed at Yorktown and Gloucester point, with all his in the expected co-operation of the French fleet, he disposable forces. Towards the end of August, the proceeded southward with the utmost celerity, to Count De Grasse entered the Chesapeake and the seat of war. The royal troops, greatly increased landed the Marquis de St. Simon with a strong by the arrival of reinforcements, were engaged in body of French soldiers. The arrival of the British over-running the whole state, committing every admiral Graves brought on an indecisive naval where the most wanton devastation of private pro- battle, which was followed by some movements perty. The immediate junction of Cornwallis and ending in the return of the British fleet to New Arnold, formed an army not to be resisted by the York. power of the Americans; and Lafayette, after a bold Washington's projects, upon the south, were advance, was obliged to fall back. This able retreat skilfully concealed from the knowledge of Sir was conducted with judgment, and happily effected Henry Clinton, by a series of maneuvres calculated with a large proportion of his military stores, not to keep alive his apprehensions for New York. withstanding ihe exulting boast of the British gene. So dexterously were these executed, that the real ral, that " the boy could not escape him.” General design was not suspected until the allies had Wayne advanced with fresh troops from the north; already approached the Delaware, and were thereand after some sharp conflicts, Cornwallis suspend. fore far beyond the reach of interruption. The ed active operations by retreating to Portsmouth. whole French force, with more than two thousand
If armies could be created by mere acts of Con- of the continentals, marched upon this expedition, gress, Washington would have found himself at the leaving the defence of the Hudson to General head of thirty-five thousand men on the first of Heath. Sir Henry Clinton then used his utmost January; but in point of fact, the Americans were exertions to support Cornwallis, both by direct asunable to take the field before the month of June, sistance and diversions to the north. One of these and it was then with a force not exceeding 5000 latter operations produced ihe capture and destruceffectives. The deficiencies in clothing, subsist. tion of New London by Benedict Arnold. ence, field equipage, &c. were even more distress After an arrangement had been made for the ing The commander-in-chief fortunately pos- transportation of the army down the Chesapeake, sessed a mind so lempered by nature, as never to Washington proceeded to Virginia with Rochamrise into extreme confidence, or to sink into the beau, Chastellux, Knox and Du Portail. А VOL. XVIII.- PART II.