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twenty-four pounders, with their carriages, were taken, and a large quantity of ball and shells of various sizes. The ariny was put in motion early on the morning of the 5th. I pushed on, in advance, with the mounted regiment, and requested governor Shelby to follow, as expeditiously as possible, with the infantry. The governor's zeal, and that of his men, enabled them to keep up with the cavalry, and by 9 o'clock, we were at Arnold's mills, having taken, in the course of the morning, two gun-boats and several batteaux, loaded with provisions and ammunition.
A rapid, at the river at Arnold's mills, affords the only fording to be met with for a very considerable distance; but, upon examination, it was found too deep for the infantry. Having, however, fortunately taken two or three boats, and some canoes, on the spot, and obliging the horsemen to take a footman behind each, the whole were safely crossed by 12 o'clock. Eight miles from the crossing, we passed a farm, where a part of the British troops had encamped the night before, under the command of colonel Warburton. The detachment with general Proctor had arrived the day before, at the Moravian towns, four miles higher up. Being now certainly near the enemy, I directed the advance of Johnson's regiment to accelerate their march, for the purpose of procuring intelligence. The officer commanding it, in a short time, sent to inform me, that his progress was stopped by the enemy, who were formed across our line of march. One of the enemy's wagoners, being also taken prisoner, from the information received from him, and my own observation, assisted by some of my officers, I soon ascertained enough of their position, and order of battle, to determine that which it was proper for me to adopt.
I have the honour herewith to enclose you my general order of the 27th ultimo, prescribing the order of march and of battle when the whole army should act together. But as the number and description of the troops had been essentially changed, since the issuing of the order, it became necessary to make a corresponding alteration in their disposition. From the place where our army was last halted, to the Moravian towns, a distance of about three and a half miles, the road passes through a beech forest without any clearing, and for the first two miles near to the bank of the river. At from two to three hundred yards from the river a swamp extends parallel to it, throughout the whole distance. The intermediate ground is dry, and although the trees are tolerably thick, it is in many places clear of underbrush. Across this strip of land, its left appayed upon the river, supported by artillery placed in the wood, their right in the swamp covered by the whole of their Indian force, the British troops were drawn up.
The troops at my disposal consisted of about one hundred anda twenty regulars of the 27th regiment, five brigades of Kentucky volunteer militia infantry under bis excellency governor Shelby,
averaging less than five hundred men, and colonel Johnson's regiment of mounted infantry, making in the whole an aggregate something above 3000. No disposition of an army opposed to an Indian force can be safe, unless it is secured on the flanks and in the rear. I had therefore no difficulty in arranging the infantry conformably to my general order of battle. General Trotter's brigade of 500 men formed the front line, his right upon the road and his left upon the swamp. General King's brigade as a second line, 150 yards in the rear of Trotter's, and Childs's brigade, as a corps of reserve, in the rear of it. These three brigades formed the command of major general Henry; the whole of general Desha's division, consisting of two brigades, were formed en potence upon the left of Trotter.
While I was engaged in forming the infantry, I had directed colonel Johnson's regiment, which was still in front, to be formed in two lines opposite to the enemy, and, upon the advance of the infantry, to take ground to the left, and forming upon that flank, to endeavour to turn the right of the Indians. A moment's reflection, however, convinced me, that from the thickness of the woods and swampiness of the ground, they would be unable to do any thing on horseback, and there was no time to dismount them and place their horses in security; I therefore determined to refuse
my left to the Indians, and to break the British lines at once by a charge of the mounted infantry; the measure was not sanctioned by any thing that I had seen or heard of, but I was fully convinced that it would succeed. The American backwoodsmen ride better in the woods than any other people. A musket or rifle is no impediment to them, being accustomed to carry them on horseback from their earliest youth. I was persuaded, too, that the enemy would be quite unprepared for the shock, and that they could not resist it. Conformably to this idea, I directed the regiment to be drawn up in close column, with its right at the distance of fifty yards from the road, (that it might be, in some measure, protected by the trees from the artillery) its left upon the swamp, and to charge, at full speed, as soon as the enemy delivered their fire. The few regular troops of the 27th regiment, under the command of their colonel (Paul), occupied, in column of sections of four, the small space between the road and the river, for the purpose of seizing the enemy's artillery, and some ten or twelve friendly Indians were directed to move under the bank. The crotchet, formed by the front line and general Desha's division, was an important point. At that place, the venerable governor of Kentucky was posted, who, at the age of sixty-six, preserves all the vigour of youth, the ardent zeal which distinguished him in the revolutionary war, and the undaunted bravery which he manifested at King's Mountain. With my aids-de-camp, the acting assistant adjutant general captain Buttler, my gailant friend commodore Perry, who did me the honour to serve as my volunteer aid-de-camp, and brigadier general Cass,
who having no command, tendered me his assistance, I placeil myself at the head of the front line of infantry, to direct the movements of the cavalry and give them the necessary supporto. The army had moved on this order but a short distance, when the mounted men received the fire of the British line, and were ordered to charge; the horses in the front of the column recoiled from the fire; another was given by the enemy, and our column, at length getting in motion, broke through the enemy with irresistible force. In one minute, the contest in front was over. The British officers, seeing no hopes of reducing their disordered ranks to order, and our mounted men wheeling upon them and pouring in a destructive fire, immediately surrendered. It is certain that three only of our troops were wounded in this charge. Upon the left, however, the contest was more severe with the Indians. Colonel Johnson, who commanded on that flank of his regiment, received a most galling fire from them, which was returned with great effect. The Indians still further to the right advanced and fell in with our front line of infantry, near its junction with Desha's division, and, for a moment, made an impression on it. His excellency governor Shelby, however, brought up a regiment to its support, and the enemy, receiving a severe fire in front, and a part of Johnson's regiment having gained their rear, retreated with precipitation. Their loss was very considerable in the action, and many were killed in their retreat.
I can give no satisfactory information of the number of Indians that were in the action, but they must have been considerably upwards of one thousand. From the documents in my possession, (general Proctor's official letters, all of which were taken) and from the information of respectable inhabitants of this territory, the Indians kept in pay by the British, were much more numerous than has been generally supposed. In a letter to general De Rottenburg, of the 27th instant, general Proctor speaks of having prevailed upon most of the Indians to accompany him, Of these it is certain that fifty or sixty Wyandot warriors abandoned him. *
The number of our troops was certainly greater than that of the enemy, but when it is recollected, that they had chosen a position that effectually secured their flank, which it was impossible for us to turn, and that we could not present to them a line more extended than their own, it will not be considered arrogant to elaim for my troops the palm of superior bravery.
In communicating to the President through you, sir, my opinion of the conduct of the officers who served under my command, I am at a loss how to mention that of governor Shelby, being convinced that no eulogium of mine can reach his merits. The
*A British officer, of high rank, assured one of my aids-de-camp, that on the day of our landing, general Proctor had, at his disposal, upwards of three th: l'sand Indian warriors, but asserted that the greatest part nad left him previous to the action.
governor of an independent state, greatly my superior in years, in experience and in military character, he placed himself under my command, and was not more remarkable for his zeal and activity, than for his promptitude and cheerfulness with which he obeyed my orders. The major generals Henry and Desha, and the brigadiers Allen, Caldwell, King, Childs and Trotter, all of the Kentucky volunteers, manifested great zeal and activity. Of governor Shelby's staff, his adjutant general, colonel Walker, rendered great service, as did his aids-de-camp general Adair, and majors Barry and Crittenden. The military skill of the former was of great service to us, and the activity of the two latter gentlemen could not be surpassed. Illness deprived me of the talents of my adjutant general colonel Gaines, who was left at Sandwich. His duties were, however, ably performed by the acting assistant adjutant general, captain Buttler. My aids-de-camp, lieutenant O'Fallon and captain Todd, of the line, and my volunteer aids John Speed Smith and John Chambers, esquires, have rendered me the most important services from the opening of the campaign. I have already stated that general Cass and commodore Perry assisted me in forming the troops for the action. The former is an officer of the highest merit, and the appearance of the brave commodore cheered and animated
breast. It would be useless, sir, after stating the circumstances of the action, to pass encomiums upon colonel Johnson and his regiment. Veterans could not have manifested more firmness. The colonel's numerous wounds
prove that he was in the post of danger, Lieutenant colonel James Johnson, and the majors Payne and Thompson were equally active though more fortunate. Major Wood of the engineers, already distinguished by his conduct at Fort Meigs, attended the army with two six pounders. Having no use for them in the action, he joined in the pursuit of the enemy, and with major Payne of the mounted regiment, two of my aidsde-camp, Todd and Chambers, and three privates, continued it for several miles after the rest of the troops had halted, and made many prisoners.
I left the army before an official return of the prisoners, or that of the killed and wounded, was made out. It was however ascertained that the former amounts to 601 regulars, including 25 officers. Our loss is 7 killed and 22 wounded, 5 of which have since died. Of the British troops 12 were killed and 22 wounded. The Indians suffered most—33 of them having been found upon the ground, besides those killed on the retreat.
On the day of the action, six pieces of brass artillery were taken, and two iron 24 pounders the day before. Several others were discovered in the river, and can be easily procured. Of the brass pieces, three are the trophies of our revolutionary war, that were taken at Saratoga and York, and surrendered by general Hull. The number of small arms taken by us and destroyed by the enemy, must amount to upwards of 5000; most of them
had been ours and taken by the enemy at the surrender of Detroit, at the river Raisin, and at colonel Dudley's defeat. I believe that the enemy retain no other military trophy of their victories than the standard of the 4th regiment; they were not magnanimous enough to bring that of the 41st regiment into the field, or it would have been taken.
You have been informed, sir, of the conduct of the troops under my command in action; it gives me great pleasure to inform you, that they merit also the approbation of their country for their conduct, in submitting to the greatest privations with the utmost cheerfulness.
The infantry were entirely without tents, and for several days the whole army subsisted upon fresh beef, without bread or salt.
I have the honour to be, &c.
WILLIAM H. HARRISON. General John Armstrong, Secretary of War.
P. S. General Proctor escaped by the fleetness of his horses, escorted by 40 dragoons and a number of mounted Indians.
HEAD QUARTERS, DETROIT, October 11th, 1813. DEAR GOVERNOR,
You will have heard before this reaches you, that I was fortunate enough to overtake general Proctor, and his tawny allies, and to give them a complete drubbing. I have 601 prisoners of the British regulars, officers included, among which there are two colonels.
Nothing but infatuation could have governed general Proctor's conduct. The day that I lauded below Malden, he had at his disposal upwards of 3000 Indian warriors: his regular force, reinforced by the militia of the district, would have made his number nearly equal to my aggregate, which, on the day of landing, did not exceed 4500. The papers have greatly exaggerated the number of militia from Kentucky: those which embarked with me at Portage, did not amount to 3000 rank and file; and several hundred of them were left in the islands.
The Indians were extremely desirous of fighting us at Malden. I enclose you Tecumseh's speech to Proctor; it is at once an evidence of the talents of the former, and the greater defect of them in the latter. His inferior officers say, that his conduct has been a series of continued blunders. He manifested, indeed, some judgment in the choice of his field of battle, as he was so posted that I could not turn him, and could only oppose a line of equal extent to his. However, the contest was not for a moment doubtful. The greater part of his Indians were in the air, (according to the Persian military phraseology) and his regulars broken and made prisoners by a single charge of mounted infan