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arrived at Pointe Lévi, where he remained twenty-four hours before it was known at Quebec; and whence it was extremely fortunate that all the small craft and canoes had been removed by order of the officer commanding the garrison. On the 13th, late in the evening, they embarked in thirty-four canoes, and very early in the morning of the 14th, he succeeded in landing five hundred men at Wolfe's Cove, without being discovered from the Lizard and Hunter, ships of war. The first operation was to take possession of what had been General Murray's house on the St. Foy Road, and of the General Hospital, They also placed guards upon all the roads, in order to prevent the garrison from obtaining supplies from the country.
The small force of Arnold prevented any attempt being made towards the reduction of the fortress until after the arrival of Montgomery from Montreal, who took the command on the 1st December, and established his head quarters at Holland House. Arnold is said to have occupied the house near Scott's Bridge, lately inhabited by the Honorable Mr. Justice Kerr.
The arrival of the Governor on the 19th November had infused the best spirit among the inhabitants of Quebec. On the 1st December, the motley garrison amounted to eighteen hundred men-all, however, full of zeal in the cause of their King and country, and well supplied with provisions for eight months.
They were under the immediate command of Colonel Allan Maclean, of the 84th Regiment or Royal Emigrants, composed principally of those of the gallant Fraser's Highlanders, who had settled in Canada.
STATEMENT OF THE GARRISON, IST DECEMBER, 1775.
70 Royal Fusileers, or 7th Regiment. 230 Royal Emigrants, or 84th Regiinent.
22 Royal Artillery. 330 British Militia, under Lt. Col. Caldwell. 543 Canadians, under Colonel Dupré. 400 Seamen under Captains Hamilton and Mackenzie. 50 Masters and Mates. 35 Marines, 120 Artificers.
1800 Total bearing arms.
The siege, or rather the blockade, was maintained during the whole month of December, although the incidents were few and of little interest. The Americans were established in every house near the walls, more particularly in the Suburb of St. Roch, near the Intendant's Palace. Their riflemen, secure in their excellent cover, kept up an unremitting fire upon the British sentries, wherever they could obtain a glimpse of them. As the Intendant's Palace was found to afford them a convenient shelter, from the cupola of which they constantly annoyed the sentries, a nine pounder was brought to bear upon the building; and this once splendid and distinguished edifice was reduced to ruin, and has never been rebuilt. They enemy also threw from thirty to forty shells every night into the city ; which fortunately did little or no injury either to the lives or the property of the inhabitants. So accustomed did the latter become to the occurrences of a siege, that at last they ceased to regard the bombardment with alarm. In the mean time, the fire from the garrison was maintained in a very effective manner upon every point where the enemy were seen.
occasion, as Montgomery was reconnoitring near the town, the horse which drew his cariole was killed by a cannon shot.
During this anxious period the gentry and inhabitants of the city bore arms, and cheerfully performed the duties of soldiers. The British Militia were conspicuous for zeal and loyalty, under the command of Major Henry Caldwell, who had the Provincial rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He had served as Deputy Quarter Master General with the army, under General WOLFE, and had settled in the Province after the conquest. The Canadian Militia within the town was commanded by Colonel Le Comte Dupré, an officer of great zeal and ability, who rendered great services during the whole siege.
General Montgomery, despairing to reduce the place by a regular siege, resolved on a night attack, in the hope of either taking it by storm, or of finding the garrison unprepared at some point. In this design he was encouraged by Arnold, whose local knowledge of Quebec was accurate, having been acquired in his frequent visits for the purpose of buying up Canadian horses. The intention of Montgomery, soon became known to the garrison, and General Carleton made every preparation to prevent surprise, and to defeat the assault of the enemy. For several days the Governor, with the officers and gentlemen, off duty, had taken up their quarters in the Récollet Convent, where they slept in their clothes. At last, early in the morning of the 31st December, and during a violent snow storm, Montgomery, at the head of the New York troops, advanced to the attack of the Lower Town, from its western extremity, along a road between the base of Cape Diamond and the river. Arnold, at the same time,
advanced from the General Hospital by way of St. Charles Street. The two parties were to meet at the lower end of Mountain Street, and when united were to force Prescott-Gate, Two feint attacks in the mean time on the side towards the west, were to distract the attention of the garrison. Such is the outline of this daring plan, the obstacles to the accomplishment of which do not seem to have entered into the contemplation of the American officers, who reckoned too much upon their own fortune and the weakness of the garrison.
When, at the head of seven hundred men, Montgomery had advanced a short distance beyond the spot where the Inclined Plane has since been constructed, he came to a narrow defile, with a precipice towards the river on the one side, and the scarped rock above him on the other. This place is known by the name of Près-de-Ville. Here all further approach to the Lower Town was intercepted, and commanded by a battery of three pounders placed in a hangard to the south of the pass.
The Post was entrusted to a Captain of Canadian Militia, whose force consisted of thirty Canadian and eight British Militiamen, with nine British seamen to work the guns, as artillerymen, under Captain Barnstare, Master of a transport, laid up in the harbor during the winter. At day-break, some of the guard, being on the look out, discovered, through the imperfect light, a body of troops in full march from Wolfe's Cove upon the Post. The men had been kept under arms waiting with the utmost steadiness for the attack, which they had reason to expect from the reports of deserters; and in pursuance of judicious arrangements which had been previously concerted, the enemy was allowed to approach unmolested
within a small distance. They halted at about fifty yards from the barrier ; and as the guard remained perfectly still, it was probably concluded that they were not on the alert. To ascertain this an officer was seen to approach quite near to the barrier. After listening a moment or two, he returned to the body; and they instantly dashed forward at double quick time to the attack of the post. This was what the Guard expected : the artillery-men stood by with lighted matches, and Captain Barnsfare at the critical moment giving the word, the fire of the guns and musketry was directed with deadly precision against the head of the advancing column. The consequence was a precipitate retreat-the enemy was scattered in
of the wounded and of the dying were heard, but nothing certain being known, the pass continued to be swept by the cannon and musketry for the space of ten minutes. The enemy having retired, thirteen bodies were found in the snow, and Montgomery's Orderly Serjeant desperately wounded, but yet alive, was brought into the guard room. On being asked if the General himself had been killed, the Serjeant evaded the question, by replying, that he had not seen him for some time, although he could not but have known the fact. This faithful Serjeant died in about an hour afterwards. It was not ascertained that the American General had been killed, until some hours afterwards, when General Carleton, being anxious to ascertain the truth, sent an Aide-de-Camp to the Seminary, to enquire if any of the American officers, then prisoners, would identify the body. A field officer of Arnold's division, who had been made prisoner near Sault-au-Matelot barrier, consenting, accompanied the Aide-de-Camp to the Pres-de-Ville