Maguaga, battle of.
After the evacuation of Canada
in 1812, General Hull
sent 600 men, under Lieutenant-Colonel Miller
, to repair the misfortunes of Van Horne
and afford a competent escort for Captain Brush
and the army supplies under his charge at the Raisin River
When the troops were placed in marching order, Lieutenant-Colonel Miller
said to the Ohio
militia: “Soldiers, we are now going to meet the enemy and beat them.
The reverses of the 5th must be repaired.
The blood of our brethren, spilt by the savages, must be avenged.
I shall lead you. You shall not disgrace yourselves nor me. Every man who shall leave the ranks or fall back, without orders, shall
be instantly put to death.
I charge the officers to execute this order.”
Turning to the veterans of the 4th Regiment of Regulars, he said: “My brave soldiers, you will add another victory to that of Tippecanoe
—another laurel to that gained on the Wabash
If there is now any man in the ranks of the detachment who fears to meet the enemy, let him fall out and stay behind!”
They all cried out, “I'll not stay!
I'll not stay!”
and, led by Miller
, they pressed southward, in an order ready for battle at any moment, until, about 4 A. M. on Aug. 9, they reached the vicinity of Maguaga, 14 miles below Detroit
Spies had led the way, under Major Maxwell
, followed by a vanguard of forty men, under Captain Snelling
, of the 4th Regiment.
The infantry moved in two columns, about 200 yards apart.
The cavalry kept the road in the centre, in double file; the artillery followed, and flank guards of riflemen marched at proper distances.
In the Oak Woods
, at Maguaga, near the banks of the Detroit
, they received from an ambush of British and Indians, under Major Muir
, a terrible volley.
This was a detachment sent over from Fort Malden by General Proctor
to repeat the tragedy at Brownstown
, cut off the communication between the Raisin
, and capture Brush and his stores.
Snelling, in the advance, returned the fire and maintained his position until Miller
came up with the main body.
These were instantly formed in battle order, and, with a shout, the gallant young commander and his men fell upon the foe. At the same time, a 6-pounder poured in a storm of grape-shot that made sad havoc.
The battle soon became general, when, closely pressed in front and rear, the British
fled, leaving Tecumseh
and his warriors to bear the brunt of battle.
The white men gained their boats as quickly as possible and sped across the river to Fort Malden.
soon broke and fled also, pursued by the impetuous Snelling
more than 2 miles, on a powerful horse, with a few of the cavalry.
The rout and victory were complete.
lost eighteen killed and fifty-seven wounded. Miller
, though injured by a fall from his horse, wished to push on to the Raisin
, but Hull
sent a peremptory order for the whole detachment to return to Detroit
were gathering in force at Sandwich
, and threatening the fort and village of Detroit