3778. returned, prepared to attack, and got very near the

privateer, when she cut her cables and failed off, having about half an hour before sent away the ship and three of the prizes, and set fire to the other two..

Captain James Willing, in the service of the United States, arrived with a detachment of men from fort Pitt at the Natches, a British settlement in West Florida, on the evening of the 19th of February; and the next morning early sent out sundry parties, who almost at one and the same time made the inhabitants prisoners of war on their parole. The colours of the United States being hoisted, and the country taken poffeffion of in their name, the inhabitants fearing the confiscation of their property, waited on capt. Willing to propose terms of accommodation, to which lie. readily agreed. They are not to take arms against the United States, or to assist their enemies; but are to observe a strict neutrality. During such neutrality, their persons, Naves, and other property, of what kind soever, are to remain safe and unmolested; but the property of all public of ficers of the British crown is excepted, as also the property of all British, who are not residents in the district. The agreement was signed by the delegates from the people and their associates, on the one part; and by the captain on the other, the 21st of February. “ Since the earliest return of spring, a succession of detachments from.gen. Howe's army have ranged the country for many miles round Philadelphia and in the Jerseys, chiefly to open the communication for bringing in supplies, and to collect forage. They have been pretty successful. But col. Hand, in answer to col. Mawhood, charged his troops not only with denying


- quarter, but butchering the Americans who surrendered 1778 : prisoners, and bayonetting, on the 21st of March, in the most cruel manner, in cold blood, men who were taken by surprise, when they neither could nor did attempt to make any resistance, and some of whom were not fighting men. The successful surprise of a party of Americans, consisting of some hundreds, posted about seventeen miles from the city, took place on the 4th of May. On the 7th, the second battalion of British light infantry, in fat boats, attended by three gallies and other armed boats, proceeded up the Delaware, in order to destroy all the American fhips and vessels lying in the river between Philadelphia and Trenton. They landed the next morning; advanced toward Bordentown; drove, the Americans that opposed them; entered the town, and burnt four store-houses, containing provisions, tobacco, some military stores and camp equipage. The. country being alarmed, and a strong body collected, the battalion crofled to the Pennsylvania shore. The next: day they resumed their operations, and at sun-set embarked and returned to Philadelphia. While upon the expedition, they burnt two frigates, one of 32 guns, the other of 28,-nine large ships—three privateer Noops of 16 guns each-three of 10-twenty-three brigs, with a number of sloops and schooners. Two of the ships : were loaded with tobacco, rum and military stores. .

Thus ends, most probably, the history of gen. Howe's successes in North America; for Sir Henry Clinton ar- ; rived at Philadelphia on the 8th of May, to succeed the former, who will soon return to Great Britain.

The British officers, to express their esteem for Sir. William Howe, prepared a magnificent entertainment,


1778. with which to grace his departure for Great Britain. It

consisted of a variety of parts, on land and water; was

called the Mischianza; and was given on Monday the 18. 18th of May. It was indeed magnificent, began at four

in the afternoon, and concluded at four the next morn-
ing. There was a grand and beautiful exhibition of fire
works; toward the conclusion of which, a triumphat
arch appeared gloriously illuminated, with Fame blow-
ing from her trumpet in letters of light Thy laurels.
shall never fade.” This prediction would be more likely
to receive a fulfilment, had the military atchievements
of the general been more answerable to the force he has
commanded against the Americans. The Americana
officers planned a different entertainment for him ; which
had proved fatal to themselves, but for the oversight of
one British general.
: The marquis de la Fayette, with a select corps of
about 2500 men, rank and file, crossed the Schuylkill,
and proceeded to take post at Barron-hill, about twelve
miles in front of the armiy at Valley-forge. He planted
his piquets and videttes, and sent out patroles on all the
roads by which it was probable the enemy would ap-
proach him. About two miles on his left was White-'
marsh, where a number of roads form a junction. The
marquis intrusted the guard of these roads to some mi-
litia, whom he ordered there, but who never went. A
quaker inferring from the marquis's directing him to
provide lodgings for the night, that he intended re-
maining there, sent information of it to the enemy, who
by their spies having obtained intelligence of the mar-
quis's lituation, formed an instantaneous delign of lur-
prising him. For that purpose, on the night of May

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the 19th, gen. Grant marched out of Philadelphia with 1778.
full 7000 men, and a number of cannon. By taking
the Franckfort road, and crossing the country through
the old York road and White-marth, the next morning 20.
he entered the road on which the marquis was, about
two miles in his rear, at Plymouth meeting-house. From
this place to Matfon's-ford on the Schuylkill is about
one mile and a quarter, the only ford by which the
marquis could effect a retreat, and about two miles
from Barron-hill church. Other troops were advancing
to take the marquis in front, and co-operate with gen.
Grant'; who instead of hastening to and securing the
ford, marched down toward the marquis on the main
road, by which mean the latter gained intelligence of
the other's being in his rear. The marquis happily by
an instant decision retreated by the road leading from
Barron-hill church to Matson's-ford, and had nearly ef-
fected his retreat over the Schuylkill before the enemy
were sensible of their error.' They then doubled their
pace to come up with his rear; but his retreat was fo
handsome and timely, that the troops were all crossed
and formed before they could come near the ford in
force. His whole loss was no more than nine men. The
American army had early information of the marquis's
danger, and were in great anxiety about him. They
began firing fome of their heaviest artillery, hoping
that the wind being fair, the found would be conveyed
to the enemy in fuch a manner as to excite mistaken
apprehensions; which they think was the cafe, as the
enemy after the marquis had croffed, made a precipie)
tate march back to Philadelphia, seemingly under an
apprehension that they should be pursued and attacked

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5778 by the whole army. “Had gen. Grant marched down

at once to Matson’s-ford, and secured it, the marquis

with his select corps, must have surrendered or been cut :, to pieces. Their lofs : would have obliged the rest of

the American army to have made an hasty flight, in a most distressing situation, the chief of them being without shoes and stockings, and otherwise badly provided. The orderly manner in which the Americans retreated, and which contributed much to their escaping, is to be afcribed to the improvements made in their discipline, owing greatly to the baron de Steuben, the inspector general.

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Rotterdam, June 20, 1778.
Friend Gordon,
V OU will not be surprised at seeing from whence

this is dated; nor be at a loss to account for my removal. The present residence will be more favorable to general intelligence than Great Britain, as it affords an opportunity of visiting and hearing from Paris' with-" out danger. My last year's letter closed with the ac

count of capt. Cunningham's having taken the packet 1777. for Holland, in the beginning of May 1777. The cap-' tain and his crew were committed to prison for foinça

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