Imagens das páginas

The concluding operation of the war in the gulf of Mexico, was the capture of fort Bowyer, on Mobile-point, which had been unsuccessfully attacked about five monto's before. On the 7th of February, the fort was invested by captain Ricketts, of the Vengeur, and in the coil ree of a few days the trenches were pushed within pistol-shot of the works. Lawrence, the American commander, finding it impossible much longer to resist the overwhelming force by which he was assailed, consented to capitulate, and on the 11th, the garrison, consisting of 366 men, surrendered themselves prisoners of war. Except the transactions at New Orleans, and the capture of fort Bowyer, no military operations occurred after the conclusion of the treaty of peace between Great Britain and America; which had been signed at Ghent the very day after the British forces had invaded Louisiana. Two naval actious, however, took place subsequent to that period; the first of which added the President frigate to the British navy. On the 14th of January, the President, commodore Decatur, sailed from New York on a cruise; but from the negligence of the pilot, having struck on the bar, where she remained two hours, her ballast was deranged, and her sailing trim totally lost. The wind preventing him from returning into port, he put to sea, trusting to the excellence of his vessel. At day-light the next morning, he fell in with a British squadron, consisting of the Endymion, Tenedos, and Pomone, frigates, and the Majestic, razee. In spite of every exertion they gained upon him, and the foremost, the Endymion, got close under his quarter, and commenced firing. The commodore determined to bear up and engage her, with the intention of carrying her by boarding, and afterwards escaping in her, and abandoning his own ship. In this he was frustrated by the manoeuvring of the enemy, who protracted the engagement for two hours, until the rest of the squadron was fast gaining upon them. On the approach of the other frigates, the President surrendered, being considerably damaged, and having twenty-four men killed, and fifty-five wounded; the Endymion had eleven killed and fourteen wounded. ” The next engagement by sea had a different termination to that we have just related. On the 28th of February, the American frigate Constitution, captain Stewart, while cruising off Madeira, fell in with the British ship Cyane, of 34 guns, captain Falcon, and the Levant, of 21 guns, captain Douglas; both of which she captured after a severe action of forty minutes. The Constitution had four men

killed and ten wounded ; the Cyane seven killed and seventeen wounded; and the Levant nine killed and seventeen wounded. The last naval action between the two contending nations, was fought on the 23d of March. On the morning of that day, the United States sloop of war Hornet, captain Biddle, then on the coast of South America, descried the British brig Penguin, captain Dickenson, which immediately bore down, and ran along side the Hornet, with the intention of carrying her by boarding. A warm engagement now ensued, in which the British vessel was repulsed, and her captain killed ; when, after a severe contest of twenty-two minutes, she struck her colours, having had fourteen men killed and twenty-eight wounded; the loss of the Hornet was one killed and eleven wounded. The momentous intelligence of the defeat of the British before New Orleans, had searcely ceased to operate upon the people of the United States, when they received the welcome news of a treaty of peace having been concluded between the British and American commissioners, on the 24th of December, 1814.” Both these events were celebrated by illuminations, and other demonstrations of joy throughout every part of the Republic. Thus terminated an eventful and memorable war of two years and six months—a war pregnant with important admonition to Great Britain and to America. Both countries had to experience the mortifying reflection, that all the blood and treasure expended in the contest, had been

* This Treaty, which consists of eleven articles, was ratified at Washington on the 17th of February, 1815, and is in substance as follows:–

Article 1. Provides that there shall be a firm and universal peace between his Britannic majesty and the United States; and that all territory, places, and possessions whatsoever, taken from either party by the other during the war, shall be restored without delay.

*: 2. Prescribes the times within which hostilities shall cease in certain titudes. Article 3. Directs that all prisoners of war taken on either side, as well by land as by sea, shall be restored as soon as possible after the ratification of the treaty. Artisles 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. Regard the appointment of commissioners, for the Wuyose of deciding upon the boundary lines between the British American provinces and the United States. Article 9. Declares, that his Britannic majesty and the government of the United States, shall immediately put an end to hostilities with all the Indians, with whom they may be at war at the time of the ratification; and forthwith restore to them all the possessions, rights, and privileges, which they enjoyed before the war; Provided, that such Indians agree on their parts to desist from hostilities. Article 10. Denounces the traffic in slaves, as irreconcilable with the principles

*humanity and justice; and both the contracting parties agree to use their best efforts to Promote its entire abolition.

The last Arti otheratifications shall be exchanged in the space of four months from the 24th of mber, 1815, or sooner if practicable,

cle provides, that this treaty shall be binding on both parties; and

lavished in vain; mone of the objects, which were the estensible cause of hostilities, having been finally obtained. The effects of the war bad competed the American people to turn their attention to the manufacturing system; and Great Britain had to witness the best market for her manufactures greatly diminished, and for some particular branches, nearly annihilated. She has likewise seen, that the mode of warfare pursued by her, has produced an union of parties among the Americans, which effectually precludes any future hope of being able to separate the eastern from the other states; and has for ever placed the republic far beyond the grasp of any European power, The people of the United States have also acquired, by dearly bought experience, a knowledge of their weakness and of their strength. By their repeated and disastrous attempts to conquer Canada, they have discovered the unfitness of a sree government and free people for offensive warfare; and that their best policy is peace, commerce, and agriculture; preferring the ploughshare to the sword, and justice to aggrandizement. This salutary lesson, if wisely improved, will be worth the whole sum they have expended on the war; by evincing to them their true national character—weak in the pursuit of conquest, but allpowerful in defence. Since the termination of hostilities, the United States have proceeded in a career of prosperity unparalelled in the history of nations. The progressive improvement of their agriculture, commerce, and manufactures, with the annual increase of their exports, both before and after that #. will be found detailed, under their respective eads, between pages 77 and 113 of this Work. The return of peace, by opening the ports to the introduction of foreign articles, has given a temporary check to some of the manufacturing establishments; but the system in general is now placed upon a much surer foundation than at any former period, and is proceeding by moderate but certain degress to ultimate perfection. Agriculture is in a highly prosperous state, and rapidly improving throughout the Union; to which the judicious plan adopted by government for disposing of all the public lands (see page 103) has not a little contributed. The mechanic arts have kept o: with agriculture; and those two important branches ave been mutually subservient to each other. Those employed in them, unlike the same classes in many other, countries, are recognised as most useful citizens, and have their equal rights, civil and religious, guaranteed by con: stitutions of their own choice; and the laws enacted aud

administered by men especially elected for that purpose, by themselves.—Stimulated and supported by these, literature, science, and the fine arts are all flourishing. The mercantile interest in the United States, as well as in Great Britain, for reasons already assigned, (page 77,) suffered severely by the return of peace; but during the last two years, the foreign commerce of the republic has greatly improved, and is fast rising into its former importance. The amount of the revenue is yearly increasing ; and by the last report of the secretary of the treasury, is estimated for the year 1819, to exceed the public expenditure by nearly three millions of dollars.

One of the most celebrated orators in the British parliament, astonished at the growth which, in his time, had taken place in the American provinces, then subject to Great Britain, uses the following prophetic language:– “Whatever England has been growing to by a progressive increase of improvement, brought in by varieties of people, by succession of civilizing conquests and civilizing settlements, in a series of 1700 years, you shall see as much done by America in the course of a single life.” This auspicious prediction has been fully realized; and the United States have risen to a distinguished rank among the nations of the earth, with a rapidity of which history furhishes no example. Under all these circumstances of national prosperity and general happiness, the inhabitants of that favoured country cannot be too thankful to the Divine Being for the blessings they enjoy. Kindly separated by nature and a wide ocean from the exterminating havoc of one quarter of the globe; too high-minded to endure the degradations of the others; possessing a chosen land, with room for their descendants to the thousandth and thousandth generation ; entertaining a due sense of their equal rights to the use of their own faculties, to the acquisitions of their industry, to honour and confidence from their fellow-citizens; resulting not from birth but good conduct, and enlightened by a benign religion, possessed, indeed, and practised in various forms, yet Alf of them inculcating honesty, temperance, and the love of man. the heart that feels these advautages must dilate with joy, and heave with gratitude to the supreme Giver of all good, whose over-ruling providence, by its dispensations, proves that he delights in the happiness of man here, and his greater felicity hereafter.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

NEW HAMPSHIRE is situated between 42° 42' and 45° 13' N. lat. and 4° 23' and 6° 10' E. long. It is bounded on the north by Lower Canada; south, by Massachusetts; east, by the district of Maine, and the Atlantic ocean; and west by Connecticut river, which separates it from Wermont. Its length, from north to south, is 160 miles; and its breadth, from east to west, seventy miles; containing 8,500 square miles, or 5,440,000 acres.

Lakes and rivers.-The principal lakes in this state are Winnipiseogee, Umbagog, Sunapee, Squam, and Ossapee. The Winnipiseogee is the largest collection of water in the state, being twenty-two miles in length, and from three to eight miles in breadth. Some very long necks of land project into it; and it contains several islands, on which rattlesnakes are very common. It abounds with fish from six to twenty pounds weight. The mountains which surround it give rise to many streams which flow into it; and between it and the mountains are several lesser ponds which communicate with it. Contiguous to this lake are the townships of Moultonborough, on the north-west; Tuftonborough, and Wolfborough on the north-east; Meridith and Gilmantown on the south-west. From the southeast extremity of this lake to the north-west corner, there is good navigation in the summer, and generally a good road in the winter, the lake is frozen about three months in the year, and many sleighs and teams, from the circum

jacent towns, cross it on the ice. Winnipisedgee river.

« AnteriorContinuar »