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part of them, stamped it with infallible certainty." These measures induced the enemy to a more humano treatment of their prisoners; but disputes on the subject prevented the establishment of a regular cartel until a late period of the war.
In March the enemy sent out two detachments to destroy the American stores at Peck's Kill on the North River, and at Danbury in Connecticut. Both succeeded in their attempt; and although the stores destroyed did not equal in quantity the report on which the expeditions were planned, yet their loss was sensibly felt by the Americans in the active season of the campaign.
In the near approach of active operations, Congress resolved that a camp should be formed on the western side of Philadelphia. General WASHINGTON had already adopted his plan for the campaign, and requested that this camp, if formed, should consist wholly of militia. In the expectation that Sir William Howe would either attempt to gain possession of the High lands on North river, and co-operate with General Bur. goyne from Canada ; or renew the plan of the last campaign, to march through New-Jersey for Philadelphia, the General determined to post his army upon the strong ground in New-Jersey, north of the road through Brunswick, to Philadelphia. In this position he might protect Philadelphia, and a great part of New-Jersey. The situation was also favourable to defend the passes and forts on the North river. To this post he wished to collect a force sufficient to repel an assault from General Howe. In the location of his army, the General had another object of magnitude upon his mind. In his opinion it was unrar. tain whether General Burgoyne would by sea join Sir William Howe, or retaining a separate command, attempt the conquest of Ticondoroga, and an impression upon the Hudson. Which of these measures would be pursued, he could not determinc, until the plans of
the enemy were unfolded. To guard against both, he ordered the troops raised north of the Hudscn to be divided between Ticonderoga and Peck's Kill, and those south including North-Carolina to be stationed in New-Jersey. The troops of South-Carolina and Georgia were left for their own defence. By this disposition of his forces, the General was in a situation to reinforce Ticonderoga from Peck's Kill, should Bur. goyne attack that post, or reinforce his own army from those posts, should Burgoyne join Sir William Howe.
In pursuance of this plan, on the last of May, the winter encampment at Morristown was broken up, and à camp formed at Middlebrook, about ten miles from Brunswick. The position naturally strong, was strengthened by entrenchments. The weak state of the American army required for its safety every advantage of ground, as well as the utmost caution of the General. On the 20th of May, the troops in New Jersey, exclusive of cavalry and artillery, a nounted only to eight thousand three hundred and seventyeight men, of whom more than two thousand were sick. The troops of North-Carolina had not then joined the army, and about five hundred of the militia of Jersey were not included in the estimate. This force was in numbers much inferiour to the army commanded by Sir William Howe, and many of the Ame. ricans were recruits, who had never faced an enemy.
Sir William having collected his force at Brunswick, about the middle of June, marched in two columns towards the Delaware. By this movement, lıe expected to induce General Washington to quit his fortificd camp to oppose the enemy's passage of the river, and that a general engagemeat would, in consequence, take place on ground favourable to the British com. mander. General Washington was not ensnared by this stratagem. In a letter written at the moment, his apprehensions of this maneuvre are thus conveyed. “ The views of the enemy must be to destroy this ar
my and get possession of Philadelphia. I am, how. ever, clearly of opinion that they will not move that way, until they have endeavoured to give a severe blow to this army. The risk would be too great to attempt to cross a river; when they must expect to meet a formidable opposition in front, and would have such a force as ours in the rear. They might possibly be successful, but the probability would be infinitely agoinst them. Should they be imprudent enough to make the attempt, I shall keep close upon their heels, and will do every thing in my power to make the project fatal to them.”
“ But besides the argument in favour of their intend. ing, in the first place, a stroke at this army, drawn from the policy of the measure, every appearance contributes to confirm the opinion. Had their design been for the Delaware, in the first instance, they would probably have made a secret, rapid march for it, and not have halted so as to awaken our attention, and give us time to prepare for obstructing them. Instead of that, they have only advanced to a position necessary to facilitate an attack on our right, the part in which we are most exposed. In addition to this cir. cumstance, they have come out as light as possible ; leaving all their baggage, provisions, boats, and bridges at Brunswick. This plainly contradicts the idea of their intending to push for the Delaware."
When the British army was collected at Brunswick, General Washington knowing that the High lands on the Hudson were not exposed, while the enemy held that position, ordered a large detachment from Peck's Kill to Middlebrook, and he determined to defend himself in this post.
Finding that his opponent could not be maneuvred out of his fortified camp, the British commander drew back his troops to Staten Island, with the design ta enibark them for the Delaware or the Chesapeak.
While these manœuvres were displaying in New
Jersoy, intelligence was received, that General Bur goyne, with a powerful body of troops, was on the Lakes, approaching Ticonderoga. General WASHINGTON immediately forwarded large reinforcements to the Northern army.
Soon after the British transports sailed out of the harbour of New-York, an intercepted letter from GeBeral Hc we to General Burgoyne was put into the hands of the Commander in Chief, which contained the in formation that, “ He was exhibiting the appearance of mcving to the Southward, while his real intent was against Boston, from whence he would co-operate with the army of Canada.” General WASHINGTON viewing this letter as a finesse, paid no regard to it.
The policy of co-operating on the North river with the army of Canada, was so evident to the military mind of the General, that he conceived the movement of Howe to be a feint, designed to draw away the American army, that the British forces might suddenly ascend the Hudson, and seize the passes in the moun. tains, he therefore moved his troops to the neighbourhood of those heights, and there waited the issue of Sir William's manœuvre.
When the apprehension of a sudden attack upon the Ainerican works on the North river, was removed by the length of time Sir William Howe had been at sea, General Washington marched his army by divisions to places which he thought the most favourable to de. fend points the enemy might attack.
While waiting the evolution of the enemy's plan of the campaign, General WASHINGTON surveyed the ground in the neighbourhood of Philadelphia, that he might be thoroughly acquainted with the probable scene of approaching military operations On a critical examination of the fortifications on the Delaware, he advised Congress to confine the defence of the river to Mud Island and Red Bank, because the force for de.
fonce, collected at these points, would produce more effect, than it could, divided upon different parts of the river.
The American army remained quietly in its position until the 21st of August. By this time General WASHIngton apprehended that General fiowe had proceeded to Charleston, South-Carolina, and he knew that che attempt to follow him to that place would be useless. He therefore resolved to move his army to the North river, to assail the enemy at New-York, or to join the northern army and oppose Burgoyne. But op the very day on which orders to this purpose were issued, intelligence reached him that Sir William had entered the Chesapeak, and was approaching its head. He had spent more than twenty days in his passage, and on the 25th of August, landed without opposition at Turkey Point, in Maryland. His force announted to eighteen thousand men, abundantly furnished with every article of warfare.
As soon as General WASHINGTON was apprized of the destination of the Pritish General, he put his army in motion to meet hiin. He marched through Philadelphia, that a sight of his forces might make impressions on the minds of those citizens, who were hostile to the American cause. The effective force of General Washington did not exceed eleven thousand men. The militia, on this occasion, turned out in considerable numbers, but the want of arms rendered the ser. vires of many of thein useless.
On the 3d of September, the hostile armies approached each other. General Washington, not being in force to contend with his foe in the open field, could only harass his line of march, with light trocps and cavalry, and pick up stragglers from his camp. As the Royal troops advanced, Sir William maneuvred to gain the right wing of the American army. Genesal Washington, to counteract his design, continued