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[394] sent to Salisbury, while Tryon himself, having writ-
Chap. XLVI.} 1771. May.
ten a harsh rebuke of the agreement in Rowan County for arbitration, marched into Orange County. His progress was marked by the destruction of wheat fields and orchards, the burning of every house which was found empty; the seizure of cattle, poultry and all the produce of the plantations. The terrified people ran together like sheep chased by a wolf; while Tryon crossed the Eno, and the Haw; and the men who had been indicted at Newbern for felonies, were already advertised as outlaws, when on the evening of the fourteenth, he reached the Great Alamance.

The little army under his command was composed of one thousand and eighteen foot soldiers, and thirty light horse, besides the officers.1 The Regulators, who had been drawn together not as insurgents but from alarm,—many, perhaps most of them without guns,—may have numbered rather more, and were encamped about five miles to the west of the stream. They gathered round James Hunter as their ‘general;’ and his superior capacity, and dauntless courage, won from the unorganized host implicit obedience and enthusiastic reverence.2 They were almost in despair, lest the Governor ‘would not lend a kind ear to the just complaints of the people.’ Still on the evening of the fifteenth they entreated, that harmony might yet be restored, that ‘the presaged tragedy of warlike marching to meet each ’

1 The number of the army of Tryon is given exactly according to his own statement in a letter from New-York, 1 August, 1771. As the Regulators were not counted, their number is a matter of mere conjecture. Tryon puts it at two thousand. One newspaper account at the time says but three hundred took part in the battle. Compare the judicious Caruthers, Life of Caldwell, 147.

2 Gov. Martin to Hillsborough, 8 March, 1772.

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