with a detachment of two hundred and sixty
They had entered the river in the evening, and came up under cover of the night, or so small a command would have been intercepted, for the enemy were numerous, brave, and full of confidence from success.
At once, after but one day's rest, Dalyell
proposed a midnight sally against the besiegers.
He was warned that they were on their guard; but the opinions and express instructions of Amherst
were on his side.
‘The enemy,’ said he, ‘may be surprised in their camp and driven out of the settlement.’
expressed a very different judgment.
‘You may do as you please,’ said Dalyell
, ‘but there is no difficulty in giving the enemy an irrecoverable blow.’2 Gladwin
reluctantly yielded, and, half an hour before three o'clock on the last morning of July, Dalyell
marched out with two hundred and forty-seven chosen men, while two boats followed along shore to protect the party and bring off the wounded and dead.
They proceeded in double file, along the great road by the river side, for a mile and a half, then forming into platoons, they advanced a half mile further, when they suddenly received, from the breastworks of the Indians, a very heavy and destructive fire, which staggered the main body and put the whole into confusion.
As the savages outnumbered the English
, the party which made the sally could escape being surrounded only by an inglorious retreat.
Twenty of the English
were killed, and forty-two