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now the popular desire was once more the voice of the harbinger, crying in the wilderness. The people had grown weary of atrophied institutions, and longed to fathom the mystery of the life of the public life. Instead of continuing a superstitious reverence for the sceptre and the throne, as the symbols of order, they yearned for a nearer converse with the eternal rules of right as the generative principles of social peace. The spirit of the people far outran conventions and congresses. Reid, among Scottish metaphysicians, and Chatham, the foremost of British statesmen, had discovered in common sense the criterion of morals and truth; the common sense of the people Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. now claimed its right to sit in judgment on the greatest question ever raised in the political world. But here as elsewhere, the decision rose out of the affections; all the colonies, as though they had been but one individual being, felt themselves wounded to the soul, when they heard and cou
retained in the service after the troops were adopted by the continent. We have seen Edward Rutledge defeated in Chap. LVI} 1776. Jan. his attempt to compel their discharge; in October, the conference at the camp, with Franklin, Harrison, and Lynch, thought it proper to exclude them from the new enlistment; but Washington, at the crisis of his distress, finding that they were very much dissatisfied at being discarded, took the responsibility of reversing the decision; and referred the subje came to Philadelphia, and exhibited a paper which, as he pretended, had been approved by each of the ministers, and which promised freedom to America in point of taxation and internal police, and the restoration of the charter of Massachusetts. Lynch, a delegate of South Carolina, who had written to the north that John Adams should be watched because his intentions might be wicked, was duped by his arts, and thought even of recommending his proposals to the consideration of congress. Besides
James Wilson (search for this): chapter 16
tisfied at being discarded, took the responsibility of reversing the decision; and referred the subject to congress. That body appointed Wythe, Samuel Adams, and Wilson, to deliberate on the question; and on the report of their able committee they voted, that the free negroes who had served faithfully in the army at Cambridge, miich came suddenly into every one's hands, was written outside of their influence; and its doctrines threatened their overthrow. On the day after its publication, Wilson, to arrest the rapid development of opinion, came to congress with the king's speech in his hand, and quoting from it the words which charged the colonists with arous ground, he rallied the bolder members in the hope to defeat the proposal; but in the absence of John Adams even his colleagues, Cushing and Paine, sided with Wilson, who carried the vote of Massachusetts as a part of his majority. Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. When Cushing's constituents heard of his pusillanimous wavering, they e
George Wythe (search for this): chapter 16
rom the new enlistment; but Washington, at the crisis of his distress, finding that they were very much dissatisfied at being discarded, took the responsibility of reversing the decision; and referred the subject to congress. That body appointed Wythe, Samuel Adams, and Wilson, to deliberate on the question; and on the report of their able committee they voted, that the free negroes who had served faithfully in the army at Cambridge, might be reenlisted therein, but no others. The right of frs author as a man of a wicked heart. I have heard that he is his own minister; why, then, should we cast the odium of distressing mankind upon his minions? Guilt must lie at his door: divine vengeance will fall on his head; and, with the aid of Wythe of Virginia, the patriot set vigorously to work to bring on a confederation and independence. The friends of the proprietary government stood in the way. The pamphlet of Common Sense, which came suddenly into every one's hands, was written out
use it was renewed, but with less fury, and was kept up till two the next morning. The flames, which had made their way from street to street, raged for three days, till four fifths, or, as some computed, nine tenths, of the houses were reduced to ashes and heaps of ruins. In this manner the royal governor burned and laid waste the best town in the oldest and most loyal colony of England, to which Elizabeth had given a name, and Raleigh devoted his fortune, and Shakespeare and Bacon and Herbert foretokened greatness; a colony where the people of themselves had established the church of England, and where many were still proud that their ancestors, in the day of the British commonwealth, had been faithful to the line of kings. On second thought, Dunmore feared he had done too much, and he insinuated that the great number of boats from his fleet had set fire only to the buildings nearest the water: but a fire kindled in many places along the outer row of houses built chiefly of pin
ng Fisher was stationed at the upper end of Norfolk; a little below her the Otter; Belew, in the Liverpool, anchored near the middle of the town; and next him lay Dunmore; the rest of the fleet was moored in the harbor. Between three and four in the afternoon the Liverpool opened its fire upon the borough; the other ships immediately followed his example, and a severe cannonade was begun from about sixty pieces of cannon. Dunmore then himself, as night was coming on, ordered out several boats to burn warehouses on the wharfs; and hailed to Belew to set fire to a large brig which lay in the dock. All the vessels of the fleet, to show their zeal, sent greatEngland, and where many were still proud that their ancestors, in the day of the British commonwealth, had been faithful to the line of kings. On second thought, Dunmore feared he had done too much, and he insinuated that the great number of boats from his fleet had set fire only to the buildings nearest the water: but a fire kind
January, 1776 AD (search for this): chapter 16
Chapter 56: The New year. 1776. January, 1776. New-year's day, 1776, was the saddest day that Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. ever broke on the women and children then in Norfolk. Warned of their danger by the commander of the squadron, there was for them no refuge. The King Fisher was stationed at the upper end of Norfolk; a little below her the Otter; Belew, in the Liverpool, anchored near the middle of the town; and next him lay Dunmore; the rest of the fleet was moored in the harbor. Between three and four in the afternoon the Liverpool opened its fire upon the borough; the other ships immediately followed his example, and a severe cannonade was begun from about sixty pieces of cannon. Dunmore then himself, as night was coming on, ordered out several boats to burn warehouses on the wharfs; and hailed to Belew to set fire to a large brig which lay in the dock. All the vessels of the fleet, to show their zeal, sent great numbers of boats on shore to assist in spreading th
ay, 1776, was the saddest day that Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. ever broke on the women and children thenve seen Edward Rutledge defeated in Chap. LVI} 1776. Jan. his attempt to compel their discharge; ing diligence of Washington had done Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. what history cannot parallel; he had for disadvantage. The world gave him Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. credit for an army of twenty thousand welbreathes revenge, and threatens us Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. with destruction; America must raise an ehe eighth of January, was most op- Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. portune; the day before, the general conge hesitancy of New Hampshire alone Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. that defeated the plan of an immediate cohe eighteenth of January, raised a Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. party of volunteers, took Sir Joseph Wrig of grass is impearled by the dews Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. of heaven, and assists to reflect the morth; the common sense of the people Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. now claimed its right to sit in judgment [12 more...]
January 20th (search for this): chapter 16
he colonies to the world to share their commerce as an act of independence; the continental congress had interfered with the old restraints on foreign trade as little as the necessity for purchasing military stores would permit; they had moreover, with few exceptions, suspended alike importations and exportations, so that New England, for example, could not export fish to Spain, even to exchange it for powder; the impulse for a world-wide commerce came from Virginia. On Saturday, the twentieth of January, on motion of Archibald Cary, her convention gave its opinion in favor of opening the ports of the colonies to all persons willing to trade with them, Great Britain, Ireland, and the British West Indies excepted, and instructed her delegates in the general congress to use their endeavors to have such a measure adopted, so soon as exportation from North America should be permitted. That this recommendation should have been left after ten months of war to be proposed by a provincial co
January 18th (search for this): chapter 16
ary preparations. In New Jersey the letters of the royal governor were intercepted; and their tenor was so malignant that Lord Stirling placed him under arrest. In Georgia the people were elated with their seeming security. Twelve months ago, said they, we were declared rebels, and yet we meet with no opposition; Britain may destroy our towns, but we can retire to the back country and tire her out. On the appearance of a small squadron in the Savannah, Joseph Habersham, on the eighteenth of January, raised a Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan. party of volunteers, took Sir Joseph Wright prisoner, and confined him under a guard in his own house. The other crown officers either fled or were seized. After an imprisonment of more than three weeks, the governor escaped by night, went by land to Bonaventure, and was rowed through Tybee Creek to the Scarborough man-of-war. Georgia, said he, is now totally under the influence of the Carolina people; nothing but force can pave the way for the co
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