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American army. General Knox, who commanded the artillery, and General du Portail, chief engineer, were also mentioned in terms of signal respect. Lieutenants Colonel Hamilton and Laurens, gained imperishable honours for the intrepidity displayed in storming the redoubt on the 14th. Nothing could exceed the universal joy at this great and important event; and that there might not be a man in the army deprived of the opportunity or inclination to join in the rejoicings, the commander in chief ordered that all who were in arrest or confinement, should be pardoned and set at liberty. He directed also that divine service should be performed in all the brigades and divisions, and thus concludes his order. “The commander in chief recommends that all the troops that are not upon duty, do assist at it, with a serious deportment, and that sensibility of heart, which the recollection of the surprising and particular interposition of Providence in our favour, claims.” Congress also, after testifying their sense of this important achievement, by an unanimous vote of thanks to Washington, the Counts Rochambeau and de Grasse, and their respective officers and soldiers, ordered the 13th of December, to be observed throughout the United States as a day of thanksgiving and prayer. Five days after the surrender of Cornwallis, Sir Henry Clinton made his appearance off the Capes of Virginia, with his long promised reinforcement of 7000 men; but receiving intelligence of his lordship's fate, he returned to New-York. Cornwallis in his despatches to Sir Henry, more than hinted that his fall had been produced by too firm a reliance on promises, that no pains were taken to fulfil. Indeed the
conduct of the commander in chief of the British ar. mies in America, from the moment it was known that Washington had turned his steps to Virginia, is wholly inexplicable. He seems never to have dreamed of the possibility, that the French could acquire such an accendancy as to impede the operations of the British fleet, and still less to have entertained an idea, that while he was idly debating upon the safest means of transporting aid to Cornwallis, Washington would press forward to his object with unremitting vigour. He promised Cornwallis that the auxiliary force should leave New-York on the 5th of October, but for reasons which have never been explained, and which indeed it would be impossible for him satisfactorily to explain, the convoy did not sail until the 19th, the very day which decided the fate of his army. He had previously taken from Cornwallis all discretionary power, by assurances that all; possible means would be exerted to relieve him, thus making it his duty to remain, until nothing but an act of desperation could have given him a chance of escape. The army under the Marquis de St. Cimon, reembarked soon after the surrender, and the Count de Grasse, though strongly urged by Washington to extend his cooperation to the army of Greene in the South, was compelled by circumstances uncontrollable, to return to his station in the West Indies. The Count Rochambeau cantoned his army for the winter in Virginia; the Pennsylvania and Maryland brigades were detached to the South, under Major General St. Clair; and the remainder of the American army under Major General Lincoln, returned by way of the Chesapeake to their former position on the Hudson.
The year 1784 which, at its commencement, presented the most gloomy prospects to the United States, closed with bright and glorious hopes. In Georgia and South Carolina, the American government was completely reestablished; and Cornwallis, who had extended the dominion of his master, with waste and havoc, over the whole southern continent, was at length arrested in his career, and now a prisoner in our hands. The ameliorating change in our civil departments, kept pace with that in our military affairs. Robert Morris, Esq. being placed at the head of our financial department, soon introduced a new system, which promised the most beneficial result; and by his exertions a national bank was established, to which Congress granted an act of incorporation, under the title of the Bank of.Worth America. A change was also made in the war department, and Major General Lincoln placed at its head. | On the last day of the year, Mr. Laurens, who had been captured on his way to Holland, in the autumn of 1780, and committed, a close prisoner, to the tower of London, was liberated after many fruitless efforts to prevail on him by alternate threats and entreaties to abandon the cause of his country. \ The Marquis de la Fayette, soon after the surrender of Cornwallis, in which he had borne so conspicuous a share, obtained permission of Congress to return to his native country. His zealous attachment to the cause of our independence, and his eminent services in the field, received from Congress their merit. ad tribute of applause ; and this gallant foreigner retired from our shores, bearing with him the esteem and gratitude of our citizens, and the affectionate respect and love of the army.
On his return from Virginia Washington was required by Congress to remain some days in Philadelphia, for the purpose of conferring with their committee, on the subject of the requisitions necessary to be made on the several states, for the establishment of the army, and the further measures to be adopted, for the vigorous prosecution of the advantages gained by the recent conquest. *
y CHAPTER xx.
Events of 1782–Situation of General Greene's army—Mr. Laurems liberated from the tower—Marquis de la Fayette returns to France—Mutiny in the Southern army.—Skirmishes between General Wayne and the enemy—Wayne defeats a party of Indians.—The enemy evacuate Savannah.-Skirmish on the Cambahee.—Lieutenant Colonel Laurens is killed.—His character.— Correspondence between General Leslie and Governour. Mat-thews.-Charleston is evacuated—Count de Grasse defeated in the West Indies—Siege of Gibraltar—JMr...sldamsforms a treaty with Holland and obtains a loan-Propositions in the British parliament for peace—Lord.North resigns and is succeeded by the Marquis of Rockingham.—Death of this nobleman.— Lord Shelburne placed at the head of the Administration.—Sir Guy Carleton appointed to the command of the British forces in Jīmerica—Case of Captain Huddy.—Sir Guy Carleton attempts a correspondence with Congress—off passport is refused to his Secretary.—Commissioners appointed to negotiate a general peace—Negotiation at Paris-Provisional articles signed be tween England and America.
The military operations of the year 1782 present little more than a few skirmishes, and predatory excursions, and these were principally confined to the states of South Carolina and Georgia, in which the enemy still maintained a few trifling posts. We have seen that General Greene, after reposing his army for a few weeks on the Santee, had moved down into the lower country, and that the same enemy who had so long spread terrour and dismay wherever they appeared, were now in their turn compelled to fly before the avenging sword of this brave and indefatigable officer, and to secure themselves an asylum, by nar
rowing the limits of their adventurous excursions.— WOL. II. 60