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William Franklin (search for this): chapter 11
Chapter 10: The war in the northern department. 1779. while congress employed the summer in debates Chap. X.} 1779. on the conditions of peace, the compulsory inactivity of the British army at the north encouraged discontent and intrigues. There rose up in rivalry with Clinton a body styling themselves the loyal associated refugees, who were impatient to obtain an independent organization under Tryon and William Franklin. Clinton wrote that his resources were insufficient for active operations: the refugees insisted that more alertness would crush the rebellion; they loved to recommend the employment of hordes of savages, and to prepare for confiscating the property of wealthy rebels by their execution or exile. The Virginians, since the expulsion of Lord Dunmore, free from war within their own borders, were enriching themselves by the unmolested culture of tobacco, which was exported through the Chesapeake; or, when that highway was unsafe, by a short land carriage
es of land at the end of the war; pensions were promised to disabled soldiers and to the widows of those who should find their death in the service; half-pay for life was voted to the officers. Each division of the militia was required to furnish for the service one Chap. X.} 1779. May. able-bodied man out of every twenty-five, to be drafted by fair and impartial lot. Hening, x. 82. The law defining citizenship will be elsewhere explained; the code in which Jefferson, Wythe, and Pendleton adapted the laws of Virginia to reason, the welfare of the whole people, and the republican form of government, was laid before the legislature. The law of descents abolished the rights of primogeniture, and distributed real as well as personal property, equally among brothers and sisters. The punishment of death was forbidden, except for treason and murder. A bill was brought in to organize schools in every county, at the expense of its inhabitants, in proportion to the general tax-rat
ink, one fort excepted. Over a party of a hundred and fifty men, by whom they were pursued, they gained the advantage, taking more than forty scalps Brandt to Bolton, 29 July, 1779. and one prisoner. The best part of the season was gone when Sullivan, on the last of July, moved from Wyoming. His arrival at Tioga sent terror to the Indians. Sev- July. eral of their chiefs said to Colonel Bolton in council: Why does not the great king, our father, assist us? Our villages will be cut off, and we can no longer fight his battles. Bolton to Haldimand, 16 Aug., 1779. On the twenty-second of August, the day after he was joined by New York troops Bolton to Haldimand, 16 Aug., 1779. On the twenty-second of August, the day after he was joined by New York troops under General James Aug. 22. Clinton, Sullivan began his march up the Tioga into the heart of the Indian country. On the same day, Little David, a Mohawk chief, delivered a message from himself and the Six Nations to Haldimand, then governor of Canada: Brother! for these three years past the Six Nations have been running a race
prospering, with inhabitants so cultivated, had not in that day its parallel in England. The husbandmen who came together were too few to withstand the unforeseen onslaught. The Hessians were the first who were let loose to plunder, and every dwelling was given up to be stripped. Just before the sun went down, the firing of houses began, and was kept up through the night with little opposition, amidst the vain cries of distressed women and helpless children. Writings of Washington, ed. Sparks, VI. 367. Early the next morning the conflagration was made general. 8. When at the return of night the retreat was sounded, the rear-guard, composed of Germans, set in flames the meeting-house and every private habitation that till then had escaped. At Green Farms, a meeting-house and all dwellings and barns were consumed. On the eleventh, the British appeared before Nor- 11. walk, and burned its houses, barns, and places of public worship. Sir George Collier and Tryon, the British a
s, that of the Susquehanna was selected for three thousand men of the best continental troops, who were to rally at Wyoming; while one thousand or more of the men of New York were to move from the Mohawk river. Before they could be ready, a party of five or six hundred men, led by Van Schaick and Willet, made a swift march of three days into the country of the Onondagas, and, without the loss of a man, destroyed their settlement. The great expedition was more tardy. Its command, which Gates declined, devolved on Sullivan, to whom Washington in May gave repeatedly the May. instruction: Move as light as possible even from the first onset. Should time be lost in transporting the troops and stores, the provisions will be consumed, and the whole enterprise may be defeated. Reject every article that can be dispensed with; this is an extraordinary case, and requires extraordinary attention. Washington to Sullivan, Middlebrook, 31 May, 1779. Yet Sullivan made insatiable demands
ll be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer, on account of his belief; but all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinion in matters of religion; and the same shall in no wise diminish, enlarge, or affect their civil capacities. And we do declare that the rights hereby asserted are of the natural rights of mankind. Randall's Jefferson, i. 219, 220. These enunciations of Jefferson on the freedom of conscience expressed the forming convictions of the people of the United States; the enactment was delayed that the great decree, which made the leap from an established church to the largest liberty of faith and public worship, might be adopted with all the solemnity of calm and careful deliberation and popular approval. Who would wish that a state which used its independent right of initiating and establishin
ing laws by abolishing the privileges of primogeniture, by cutting off entails, by forbidding the slave-trade, and by presenting the principle of freedom in religion as the inherent and inalienable possession of spiritual being, should have remained without the attribute of original legislation? The British expedition to the Chesapeake, after May 30. its return to New York, joined a detachment conducted by Clinton himself forty miles up the Hudson to gain possession of Stony Point and Verplanck's Chap. X.} 1779. Point. The garrison withdrew from their unfinished work at Stony Point. The commander at Verplanck's Point, waiting to be closely invested by water, on the second of June made an inglorious surrender. Moore's Diary, II. 163, 164. The June 2. British fortified and garrisoned the two posts which commanded King's ferry, and left the Americans no line of communication between New York and New Jersey, south of the highlands. A pillaging expedition, sent to punish the
rongly fortified themselves at Stony Point, than Washington, after ascertaining exactly the character of their works, formed a plan for carrying them by surprise. Wayne, of whom he made choice to lead the enterprise, undertook the perilous office with alacrity, and devised improvements in the method of executing the design. Stoe river, vessels of war commanded the foot of the hill. Conducting twelve hundred chosen men in single file over mountains and through morasses and narrow passes, Wayne halted them at a distance of a mile and a half from the enemy, while with the principal officers he reconnoitred the works. About twenty minutes after twelve on ties of Chap. X.} 1779. July. 16. twenty men each, in one of which seventeen out of the twenty were killed or wounded, removed the abattis and other obstructions. Wayne, leading on a regiment, was wounded in the head, but, supported by his aids, still went forward. The two columns, heedless of musketry and grape-shot, gained the
George Collier (search for this): chapter 11
habitation that till then had escaped. At Green Farms, a meeting-house and all dwellings and barns were consumed. On the eleventh, the British appeared before Nor- 11. walk, and burned its houses, barns, and places of public worship. Sir George Collier and Tryon, the British admiral and general, in their address to the inhabitants of Connecticut, said: The existence of a single habitation on your defenceless coast ought to be a constant reproof to your ingratitude. Moore's Diary, II. llantly effected their land- 28. ing, were too weak to carry the works of the British by storm; the commodore knew not how to use his mastery of the water; and, while a re-enforcement was on the way, on the fourteenth of August Sir Aug. 14. George Collier arrived in a sixty-four gun ship, attended by five frigates. Two vessels of war fell into his hands; the rest and all the transports fled up the river, and were burned by the Americans themselves who escaped through the woods. The British w
o recommend the employment of hordes of savages, and to prepare for confiscating the property of wealthy rebels by their execution or exile. The Virginians, since the expulsion of Lord Dunmore, free from war within their own borders, were enriching themselves by the unmolested culture of tobacco, which was exported through the Chesapeake; or, when that highway was unsafe, by a short land carriage to Albemarle Sound. On the ninth of May, Chap. X.} 1779 May 9. two thousand men under General Matthew, with fivehundred marines, anchored in Hampton Roads. The next day, after occupying Portsmouth and Norfolk, they burned every house but one in Suffolk county, and plundered or ruined all perishable property. The women and unarmed men were given over to violence and death. Parties from a sloop of war and privateers entered the principal waters of the Chesapeake, carried off or wasted stores of tobacco heaped on their banks, and burned the dwellings of the planters. Before the end of
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