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volunteer. Yet their movements were almost arrested by the failure of the Virginian contractors to furnish the wagons necessary for transporting the baggage and artillery. In this emergency, Franklin, by great exertions, and by influence with the farmers of Pennsylvania, succeeded in procuring these supplies ; but before they could be transported across the rugged Allegany, a long time would necessarily elapse, during which the enemy might strengthen Duquesne and reinforce the garrison. At the earnest entreaty of Washington, it was therefore determined to press forward with 1,200 well-appointed men, and that Colonel Dunbar, with the heavy artillery and baggage, should remain behind. Washington, however, was dismayed to find that Braddock, though a brave and experienced officer, was wedded to the forms of regular European warfare. Instead of causing his troops to push briskly across the intervening obstacles, he employed them in levelling every hillock, and throwing bridges over every brook. Again, though advised to accept the offered aid of some Indians, at least for scouring the woods and guarding against surprise, he despised such auxiliaries, and treated them so coldly that they quickly dropped off. Washington being unfortunately seized with a violent illness, was unable by his utmost efforts to keep up with the army, but rejoined it on the evening of the 8th July, within fifteen miles of Fort Duquesne, against which this laborious movement was directed. The garrison was understood to be small, and quite inadequate to resist the great force now brought to bear upon it ; exulting hope filled every heart; and no one doubted to see the British flag waving next day over the bat tlements, and the enemy rooted out from all Western America. The march next morning is described as a splendid spectacle; being made in full military array, with a majestic river on one hand, and deep woods on the other. Not an enemy appeared, and the most profound silence reigned over this wild territory. They proceeded, forded the stream, and were passing a rough tract covered with wood, which led direct to the fort, when suddenly a destructive fire was poured in upon the front, while another rapidly followed on the right flank. The assault was continued by an enemy who remained invisible, closely hidden behind trees and ravines. The vanguard fell back in a confusion which soon became general. Their only hope would now have been to quit their ranks, rush behind the bushes, and fight man to man with their assailants; but Braddock insisted on forming them into platoons and columns, in order to make regular discharges, which struck only the trees. After some time spent in these fruitless efforts, with the hidden fire still unabated, a general fight ensued, of the regulars being the most precipitate and shameful, while the only stand was made by the Virginian hunters. The officers in general remained on the field while there seemed any hope of rallying their troops, and, consequently, out of eighty-six engaged, sixty-three were killed or wounded; the commander himself mortally. Of the privates, 714 fell; the rout was complete, and the more disgraceful, in that it was before an inferior enemy, whose number did not exceed 850, of whom only 250 were Europeans. During this disastrous day, Washington displayed an admirable courage and coolness. After the fall of so many officers, he alone remained to convey orders, and was seen galloping in every direction across the field, amid the thickest fire ; yet, by a dispensation which seemed providential, though four balls passed through his clothes, and two horses were killed under him, he escaped unhurt; and very contrary to his wish, this melancholy disaster greatly elevated his reputation. The remnant of the army retreated precipitately into the low country, whither the French considered themselves too weak to pursue them.
Meantime, a militia force of about 5,000 men was assembled at Albany, for an expedition against the important fortress of Crown Point, on the borders of Canada. The commander was William Johnson, an Irishman, who had risen
from the ranks, and whose uncommon bodily strength, with a rude energy of character, had enabled him to acquire a greater influence over the Indian tribes than any other British officer. Having reached the southern extremity of Lake George, and learned that the enemy were erecting an additional fort at Ticonderoga, he resolved to push forward, hoping to reduce it before the works were completed. Intelligence, however, was soon received, which required him to stand on the defensive. Baron Dieskau, an able commander, had carried out from France a large reinforcement, and having added to them a considerable body of Indians, was advancing to attack the British settlements. He at first proceeded toward Oswego, but on learning the advance of Johnson, hastened to direct his operations against him. The latter had fortified his camp, but through defective information, sent forward an advanced party of 1,000 men, who at a distance of about three miles unexpectedly met the enemy, and were driven back with great loss. Dieskau then marched forward to assault the main camp, which he seemed to have a fair prospect of carrying ; but Johnson received him with the utmost firmness, and opening a brisk fire, caused the Indians and militia to fall back. The French regulars maintained the contest for several hours with great vigor, and the British general was even obliged by a severe wound to leave the command to Lyman, his second. The final result however was, that the assailants were completely repulsed, with the loss of nearly 1,000 men. Dieskau himself was mortally wounded and made prisoner; and his retreating forces, being suddenly assailed by a small detachment from New York, abandoned their baggage and took to flight. It was thought by many, that if Johnson had followed up his victory by an attack on Crown Point, or at least on Ticonderoga, he would have succeeded; but he did not choose to hazard the laurels already gained.
It may be mentioned also that in this busy campaign, Shirley, the governor of Massachusetts, led an expedition against Niagara ; but the difficulties of the march, and the discouragement spread by the tidings of Braddock's defeat, prevented his engaging in any undertaking. It would seem, indeed, that the British forces were scattered in too many quarters, instead of concentrating themselves in one united effort against some important position or commanding stronghold.
The war which had thus for some time been covertly waged between the two nations, was, in 1756, openly declared ; and increased exertions were made on ooth sides. In a council of governors held at New York, three expeditions were planned, in which 21,000 men were to be employed. Abercromby and Lord Loudon, however, who successively went out as commander-in-chief, did not possess the requisite energy; and discontents arose among the provincial officers, from being compelled to take rank under the regulars. The French force, meantime, was united under Montcalm, an officer of high spirit; and while the British were deliberating, he hastened against the two forts at Oswego, which, as they protected Lake Ontario, formed their principal bulwark in that quarter. On the 10th of August he began the siege of the first, which was soon evacuated by its defenders, owing to the failure of their ammunition, and he then assailed the other with such vigor, that it surrendered on the 14th, Colonel Mercer, the commander, having been killed in the attack. The garrison, amounting to 1,400, became prisoners of war, while 121 pieces of cannon, with a quantity of stores, sloops, and boats, fell into his hands. In the following year, he marched against Fort William Henry, on Lake George, commenced the siege in the beginning of August, and compelled it, in six days, to surrender. The defenders stipulated to march out with the honors of war, and rejoin their countrymen; but these terms were completely violated by the Indians, who barbarously massacred a great number of them. Montcalm's friends have studiously defended him against any charge, even of neglect, on this dreadful occasion, but blame was attached, at the time, both to him and his officers, and there was accordingly kindled throughout the colonies a deep thirst for vengeance.
Hitherto this war had been an almost continued series of disaster and disgrace; and in Europe similar results were seen to follow the feeble measures of the cabinet. But the spirit of the nation, being now aroused, forced into power William Pitt, perhaps the most energetic war minister who has ever swayed the British counciis. Adverse to military operations in Germany, he turned his main attention to the North American colonies, and by vigorously announcing his resolution, drew forth from themselves strenuous exertions. Lord Loudon was superseded by Amherst, a more able commander ; while the most active part was assigned to Wolfe, a young officer, in whom the discerning eye of Pitt discovered a rising military genius. It being determined to strike the first blow against Louisburg, considered the centre of French power in that quarter, an expedition sailed against it in May, 1757, and by the end of July, chiefly through his exertions, it was compelled to surrender. This success was followed up next year by a more formidable attempt, under the same commander, against Quebec, capital of New France. On the 13th September, 1759, a splendid victory, dearly purchased indeed by the death of that gallant officer, placed the city in the undisputed possession of Britain.
After this triumph, France could with difficulty maintain her posts in the interior. In 1758, General Abercromby, with 16,000 regulars and provincials, marched against Crown Point and Ticonderoga. The first skirmish was marked by the fall of Lord Howe, a young officer of high promise, and much beloved in America. The commander, having soon after made a premature assault on the last-mentioned fort, was repulsed with considerable loss, when he raised the siege and precipitately retreated. Colonel Bradstreet, however, at the head of a detachment, captured Fort Frontignac, a post of some consequence on Lake Ontario.
Meantime the Virginians, notwithstanding their most earnest wishes, had in vain attempted to renew the expedition against Fort Duquesne; having placed under the cominand of Washington a force barely sufficient to check the incursions of the French and Indians. In 1758, however, under the auspices of Pitt, General Forbes arrived with a body of troops, which the provincials soon raised to 6,000 ; but, contrary to the urgent advice of the American, instead of pushing on by a track already formed, he undertook to cut a new one through forests almost impracticable. He accordingly failed to reach the scene of action till November, when the season was too late for active operations, and the provisions were nearly exhausted. A party under Major Grant, having rashly advanced, were defeated with great loss. The situation of the army appeared very serious, when news arrived that the garrison, reduced to 500, and discouraged probably by the fall of Louisburg and the dangers menacing Canada, had set fire to the fort, and retreated in boats down the river. The Indians, who had already abandoned their cause, readily entered into terms with the British, and tranquillity was established along the whole line of the back settlements. By the peace of Paris, France ceded it and all the adjacent countries. Spain was also obliged to yield Florida ; and Britain acquired a vast, compact, and flourishing empire, reaching from the arctic zone to the Gulf of Mexico.
It would have been satisfactory could we have added a particular view of the progress made during this period by the colonies, in population, industry, and wealth. 'Their advance was certainly most rapid; yet the details are scanty and in many cases doubtful. They were favored by a combination of circumstances almost unprecedented. An industrious race, skilled in agriculture, were transported to a country where land to any extent could be easily obtained. The abundance of the necessaries of life thus produced, removed all check to marriage and the rearing of children ; while the same circumstances invited a continual iuflux of emigrants from Europe. Hence arose a rapid increase of population, of which the modern world at least had never seen any example ; doubling, it was supposed, in twenty-five or even twenty years.
The commercial progress of the colonies was equally rapid, and excited a still greater interest. Their exports consisted almost exclusively of the rude productions of land; a circumstance most grateful to the English people, since it naturally led to the desire to take their commodities in exchange. Their progress in agriculture, by absorbing at once their capital and their labor, prevented them from making any attempt to manufacture goods for themselves; while, by increasing their wealth, it induced them to prefer the fabrics of Britain to the rude home-made stuffs with which they had been at first contented. There was, however, a difficulty in finding articles, such as the rich products of the West Indies, which would obtain a place in the market of Europe. Silk and wine, the early objects of hope and pride, never succeeded; and though, in 1731, there were exported from Virginia three hundred weight of the former, their expectations from this source proved ultimately fallacious. What they vainly sought, however, came upon them from unexpected quarters; and we have seen how tobacco forced itself into the place of a leading export. During the present period, Virginia and Maryland became the chief sources whence all Europe was supplied. In 1744 and the two succeeding years, Britain imported 40,000,000 pounds, whereof 30,000 were re-exported. Rice also was accidentally introduced in the manner already mentioned ; and so congenial was the swampy soil of Carolina to its culture, that nearly the whole quantity consumed in Europe was raised in that plantation. The productions of the northern colonies being nearly the same with those of Britain, met with no demand from our merchants ; but the surplus of grain found a market in Spain and Portugal; provisions and timber were sent to the West Indies; and thence they obtained the means to pay for foreign manufactures. To New England again, the fisheries and shipbuilding were a continual source of ever-increasing wealth. The following exhibits a view of the progressive increase of imports and exports from 1700 to 1763:
In 1769, a merchant, under the title of The American Traveller (4to, London, 1769), published a very detailed statement of the commerce of the colonies, on an average of the preceding three years; and as this does not seem to be generally known, we here present a summary, which may interest some classes of readers :