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individuals who composed them may be,) and to bid them an affectionate—a long farewell. But before the commander in chief takes his final leave of those he holds most dear, he wishes to indulge himself a few moments in calling to mind a slight review of the past. He will then take the liberty of exploring with his military friends, their future prospects; of advising their general line of conduct, which in his opinion, ought to be pursued ; and he will conclude the address, by expressing the obligations he feels himself under for the spirited, and able assistance he has experienced from them, in the performance of an arduous office. Being now to conclude these my last public orders, and take my ultimate leave, in a short time, of the military character, and to bid a final adieu to the armies I have so long had the honour to command, I can only again offer in their behalf, my recommendation to their grateful country, and my prayers to the God of armies. May ample justice be done them here ; and may the choicest of heaven's favours, both here and hereafter, attend those, who, under the divine auspices, have secured innumerable blessings for others. With these wishes and this benediction, the commander in chief is about to retire from service. The curtain of separation will soon be drawn, and the military scene to him, will be closed for
Sir Guy Carleton, who now held the chief command at New-York, received the final orders of the British court for the evacuation of New-York, in the mouth of August, and assured the president of Congress that he should loose no time in fulfilling his majesty’s commands; but could not specify the time.
No provision had been made in the treaty for the tories, and at the return of peace all the corrupt passions of the human heart were let loose against this wretched, this de
voted people. All who had suffered by their ravages, and cruel depredations, all who had purchased, for a song their confiscated estates; all who were indebted to them, or otherwise maliciously disposed towards them, gave full scope to their passions, and were ready to drive them, not only from the country, but if possible from the face of the earth. The wisdom and benevolence of many of the best men in the country, saw the necessity of counteracting, and if possible, suppressing these passions, both upon principle of policy, as well as humanity; but all in vain; and the British government was constrained to provide settlements for this devoted people, in the dreary regions
of Novascotia. - - - * * On the 25th of November, the British evacuated the city of New-York, and the Americans took possession with great dignity and good order. His excellency General • Washington, with his principal officers, the governor of the state of New-York, &c. moved in procession, attended by a vast concourse of citizens. The ceremony was conducted with great solemnity, and did honour to the oc
casion. - o . . When the festivity and hilarity of this interesting scene were closed, his excellency General Washington, took an affectionate leave of the officers who had been his brave , companions in arms; retired to Philadelphia, and exhibited his accounts to the comptroller, in his own hand writing. He then retired to Annapolis, where Congress were then sitting, (by adjournment,) and on the 20th of December,
- 1783, resigued his commission of commander in chief. : The eventful epoch being announced, the members were all in their seats, and the galleries, as well as the floor of the house, were crowded with a numerous and respectable collection of ladies and gentlemen, when his excellency, agreeable to appointment, and by notice from the president, arose from his seat, and with the dignity of himself, 'addressed the house in an appropriate speech. The president rose from his seat and addressed his excellency in an affectionate and dignified reply, and his excellency withdrew. Language cannot express the emotions of his soul, any more than it can paint the true worth and great'ness of his character; the affections of Congress and of the audience did homage to his virtues by their tears of gratitude, which flowed spontaneously, as by the spirit of inspiration, upon this solemn, this interesting, this momentous occasion. Thus closed the greatest revolution that had ever been attempted, accompanied with the greatest displays of wisdom, patience, fortitude, disinterested patriotism, and feats of arms, ever before recorded, and with a general success uncontemplated by the most sanguine sons of liberty. The liberties of America were now sealed by the resignation of that illustrious chief, who had been the instrument in the hand of God, of obtaining and securing all her blessings; and on whose sword hung the destinies of America. * The father of his country retired to his seat in Virginia, there to enjoy in the bosom of repose, the prayers and benedictions of a free and-grateful people. V The definitive treaty between Great-Britain and the United States, (accompanied with the joint letter of the American commissioners,) bearing date Passy, September - 10th, was laid before Congress on the 13th of December, and referred to a special committee for consideration, who a made their report on the 14th of January, to the acceptance of the nine states then present, and thus the treaty was ratified, and the seal of the United States affixed thereunto,
The officers of the American army formed themselves into a society, on 13th of May, 1783, and entered into the following compact.—“The officers of the army, do hereby in the most solemn manner, associate, constitute, and combine themselves into a society of friends, to endure as long as they shall endure, or any of their eldest male posterity, and in failure thereof, the collateral branches who may be judged worthy of becoming its supporters and members.” This society, thus formed, was denominated the society of Cincinnati; in honour of that illustrious Roman chief, Cincinnatus, whose virtuous valour saved his country.
*AUSES THAT LED TO THE change IN THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES.
THE commerce of America had languished so long through an eight years' war, that the country had become so entirely destitute of those supplies of foreign manufacture she had been accustomed to enjoy, and on which she had depended for her supplies, from her first settlement, that the extensive demands for foreign articles opened a great commercial field, both to the American and British merchants. France and Holland both put in their claim, for a share, as a matter of right, as the allies of America in time of war; but these claims were more readily acknowledged, than gratified in America, because the manufactures of Great-Britain were better adapted to the wants of America, than those of France or Holland, and the American merchants being accustomed to the commerce of Great-Britain, returned the more readily into their former channel. This gave umbrage to France, for she had been led to believe, that the commerce of America would be turned to France, from prejudice against Great-Britain, as well as from gratitude and friendship to his ally. The British merchants saw the danger, and crowded their manufactures into the American market, through their own agents, which not only lessened the profits of the American merchant through the channel of regular commerce, but over-stocked the markets, and reduced the prices, all which brought on collisions between the merchants and the government, pressing Congress to enforce such a system of commercial duties, as should not only regulate trade, but increase the national revenue; Congress made the attempt by a national impost, which