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to have lost his nearest relative or heart friend. Congress proclaimed for him their grateful remembrance, profound respect, and high veneration; and desiring to transmit to future ages a truly worthy example of Chap. LIV.} patriotism, conduct, boldness of enterprise, insuperable perseverance, and contempt of danger and death, they reared a marble monument to the glory of Richard Montgomery. In the British parliament, the great defenders of liberty vied with each other in his praise. Barre, his veteran fellow-soldier in the late war, wept profusely as he expatiated on their fast friendship and participation of service in that season of enterprise and glory, and holding up the British commanders in review, pronounced a glowing tribute to his superior merits. Edmund Burke contrasted the condition of the eight thousand men, starved, disgraced, and shut up within the single town of Boston, with the movements of the hero who in one campaign had conquered two thirds of Canada. I,
a mutinous disaffection to the service. In the evening of the twenty third, Montgomery repaired to their quarters, and in few words gave them leave to stand aside; he would compel none; he wanted with him no persons who went with reluctance. His words recalled the officers to their duty, but the incident hurried him into a resolution to attempt gaining Quebec before the first of January, when his legal authority to restrain the waywardness of the discontented would cease. At sundown of Christmas he reviewed Arnold's battalion at Morgan's quarters, and ad- Chap. LIV.} 1775 Dec. dressed them with spirit; after which a council of war agreed on a night attack on the lower town. For the following days the troops kept themselves in readiness at a moment's warning. In the interval the intention was revealed by a deserter to the garrison, so that every preparation was made against a surprise; two thirds of the men lay on their arms; in the upper town, Carleton and others not on duty s
ome few escaped, passing over the shoal ice on the St. Charles. Near daylight, about two hundred of the Americans withdrew from the streets, and found shelter in houses of stone, from which they could fire with better effect. It was then that Hendricks, while aiming his rifle, was shot through the heart. But the retreat of Campbell, and the certainty that the other attacks were only feints, left Carleton free to concentrate all his force against the party of Arnold. By his orders a sally wathe town. Morgan proposed that they should cut their way through their enemies; but retreat had become impracticable; and after maintaining the struggle till the last hope was gone, at ten o'clock they surrendered. Thus Greene, Meigs, Morgan, Hendricks, the hardy men who had passed the wilderness with purposes of conquest, made for themselves a heroic name, but found their way only to death or a prison. To the captives Carleton proved a humane and generous enemy. The loss of the British was
Aaron Burr (search for this): chapter 14
th a precipice on their right, to descend by sliding down fifteen or twenty feet. The wind, which was at east by north, blew furiously in their faces, with cutting hail, which the eye could not endure; their constant step wore the frozen snow into little lumps of ice, so that the men were fatigued by their struggles not to fall, and they could not keep their arms dry. The signal from Cape Diamond being given more than half an hour too soon, the general with his aidede-camps, Macpherson and Burr, pushed on with the front, composed of Cheesman's company and Mott's; and more than half an hour before day they arrived at the first barrier, with the guides and carpenters. The rest of the party lagged behind; and the ladders were not within half a mile. Montgomery and Cheesman were the first that entered the undefended bar- Chap. LIV.} 1775. Dec. rier, passing on between the rock and the pickets which the carpenters began to saw and wrench away. While a message was sent back to hurry
Edmund Burke (search for this): chapter 14
e perseverance, and contempt of danger and death, they reared a marble monument to the glory of Richard Montgomery. In the British parliament, the great defenders of liberty vied with each other in his praise. Barre, his veteran fellow-soldier in the late war, wept profusely as he expatiated on their fast friendship and participation of service in that season of enterprise and glory, and holding up the British commanders in review, pronounced a glowing tribute to his superior merits. Edmund Burke contrasted the condition of the eight thousand men, starved, disgraced, and shut up within the single town of Boston, with the movements of the hero who in one campaign had conquered two thirds of Canada. I, replied North, cannot join in lamenting the death of Montgomery as a public loss. He was brave, he was able, he was humane, he was generous; but still he was only a brave, able, humane, and generous rebel. Curse on his virtues, they've undone his country. The term of rebel, retort
William Heth (search for this): chapter 14
ger of their position to appear. They were soon joined by Greene, Bigelow, and Meigs, so that there were at least two hundred Americans in the town; and they all fearlessly pressed on in the narrow way to the second barricade, at the eastern extremity of Sault au Matelot street, where the defences extended from the rock to the river. Under the direction of Greene, heroic efforts were made to carry them. With a voice louder than the northeast gale, Morgan cheered on his riflemen; but though Heth and Porterfield and a few others in the front files ascended the scaling ladders, it was only to see on the other side rows of troops prepared to receive them on hedges of bayonets if they had leaped down. Here was the greatest loss of life; some of the American officers fell; others received several balls in their clothes; and the assailants, of whose arms nine out of ten had been rendered useless by the storm, were exposed in the narrow street to a heavy fire from houses on both sides. A
French Canadians (search for this): chapter 14
ss of Montcalm in risking a battle outside of the walls. The rapid success of Montgomery had emboldened a party in Quebec to confess a willingness to receive him on terms of capitulation. But on the twenty second, Carleton ordered all persons who would not join in the defence of the town, to leave it within four days; and after their departure he found himself supported by more than three hundred regulars, three hundred and thirty Anglo-Canadian militia, five hundred and forty three French Canadians, four hundred and eighty five seamen and marines, beside a hundred and twenty artificers capable of bearing arms. Montgomery had conquered rather as the leader of a disorderly band of turbulent freemen, than as the commander of a disciplined army. Not only had the troops from the different colonies had their separate regulations and terms of enlistment, but the privates retained the inquisitiveness and self-direction of civil life; so that his authority depended chiefly on his perso
Donald Campbell (search for this): chapter 14
ore of the officers thought nothing further could be attempted with wearied troops and no arm but the bayonet; fireballs were thrown by the enemy to light up the scene; their musketeers began to fire from the loopholes of the blockhouse; and Donald Campbell, who assumed the command of the Yorkers, encountered the reproach of ordering an immediate retreat, which was effected without further loss. On the northeastern side of the lower town, Arnold led the forlorn hope, which consisted of more out two hundred of the Americans withdrew from the streets, and found shelter in houses of stone, from which they could fire with better effect. It was then that Hendricks, while aiming his rifle, was shot through the heart. But the retreat of Campbell, and the certainty that the other attacks were only feints, left Carleton free to concentrate all his force against the party of Arnold. By his orders a sally was now made from Palace Gate, in the rear of the Americans, by Captain Laws, with tw
David Wooster (search for this): chapter 14
rison his conquests, and to go down against Quebec. He was deserted even by most of the Green Mountain Boys, who at first were disposed to share his winter campaign. The continental congress, which was eager Chap. LIV.} 1775. Nov. for the occupation of Canada, took no seasonable care to supply the places of his men as their time of enlistment expired. On the twenty sixth, leaving St. John's under the command of Marinus Willett of New York, and entrusting the government of Montreal to Wooster of Connecticut, and in the spirit of a lawgiver who was to regenerate the province, making a declaration that on his return he would call a convention of the Canadian people, Montgomery embarked on board three armed schooners with artillery and provisions and three hundred troops; and on the third day of De- Dec. cember, at Point aux Trembles, made a junction with Arnold. The famine-proof veterans, now but six hundred and seventy five in number, were paraded in front of the Catholic chape
. LIV.} 1775. Nov. humane disposition, his caution, his pride, and his firmness were guarantees that Quebec would be pertinaciously defended. Besides, he had been Wolfe's quartermaster general, and had himself witnessed how much of the success of his chief had been due to the rashness of Montcalm in risking a battle outside of theilure. One day the general, accompanied by his aidede-camp, Macpherson, the pure-minded, youthful enthusiast for liberty, went out to meditate on the spot where Wolfe had fallen, fighting for England in friendship with America. He ran a parallel in his mind between the career of Wolfe and his own; he had lost the ambition whichWolfe and his own; he had lost the ambition which once sweetened a military life, and a sense of duty was now his only spring of action; if the Americans should continue to prosper, he wished to return to the retired life in which he alone found delight; but said he, should the scene change, I shall be always ready to contribute to the public safety. And his last message to his
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