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best of my abilities, the duties for which I was ordered to Oswego Falls, I have great satisfaction in acknowledging the unremitted exertions of lieutenant Pierce, sailing-master Vaughan, and midshipmen Mackey, Hart, and Caton; also to major Appling, his officers and men, for their kind assistance in the same duty,
The report of killed, wounded, and prisoners, and also the number and description of the captured boats, has been already remitted by captain Ridgely and myself.
I have the honour to be, &c.
M. F. WOOLSEY. Commodore Isaac Chauncey,
commanding U. S. forces on the Lakes.
Extract of a letter from commodore Barney to the Secretary of
the Navy. “ST. LEONARD'S CREEK, June 11th, 1814.
“My last was on the 9th instant. On the evening of the 9th, the enemy
with twenty barges, having received more force from the 74, at the mouth of the Patuxent. I met them, and after a short action drove them until dark, and returned to my anchorage. Yesterday they made a bold attempt; about 2 P. M. they moved up with twenty-one barges, one rocket barge, and two schooners in tow. On making their appearance, we went down on them; they kept up a smart fire for sometime, and seemed determined to do something decisive. But they soon gave way and retreated ; we pursued them down the creek. At the mouth lay the eighteen gun schooner ; she attempted to beat out, but our fire was so severe, she ran ashore at the entrance, and was abandoned. We still pursued, until the razee and brig opened upon us a brisk fire, which completely covered the schooner and the flying barges, &c. We must have done them considerable damage.
Extract of a letter from commodore Barney to the Secretary of
“ ST. LEONARD'S CREEK, June 13th, 1814. "I had the honour of addressing you on the 11th instant, giving a short detail of our action with the enemy on the 10th. By information, they suffered much. The large schooner was nearly destroyed, having several shot through her at the water's edge; her deck torn up, gun dismounted, and main-mast nearly cut of about half-way up, and rendered unserviceable. She was otherwise much cut; they ran her ashore to prevent her sinking. The
commodore's boat was cut in two; a shot went through the rockete boat; one of the small schooners, carrying two 32 pounders, had a shot which raked her from aft, forward ; the boats, generally, suffered ; but I have not ascertained what loss they sustained in men.
“ Yesterday a gentleman of this county, by the name of Parron, who lives at the mouth of the creek, came up, and said, that himself and brother had been taken and carried on board. T'hat he had been landed from the commodore, to inform the inhabitants, that if they remained at home quietly, they should not be molested, but if on laading he found their houses deserted, he would burn them all, as he had done the house of a Mr. Patterson, and the barn of Mr. Skinner (our purser). Saturday and yesterday, the enemy were employed on the Patuxent River, in landing on the banks to plunder stock, &c. It was on Sunday evening they burnt the property of Mr. Patterson and Skinner. Mr. Parron informs me, that commodore Barrie, of the Dragon, always commanded, and is much disappointed at his defeats, for that he had wrote to admiral Cockburn, that if the admiral would send him a frigate and brig, he would most assuredly destroy the Flotilla. The frigate is the Acasta, the brig the Jasseur. 'They left only 200 men, and one small boat on board the Dragon, at the mouth of the Patuxent, so that there must have been in the affair on Friday, up-wards of 800 men! They came with a band of music playing."
UNITED STATES' SHIP SUPERIOR, SACKETT'S HARBOR,
June 20th, 1874. SIR,
Knowing that the enemy was constantly receiving naval and military stores at Kingston, by the St. Lawrence, I thought it might be practicable to surprise and capture a brigade of boats with stores on board, and either destroy or bring them off. For this purpose I directed lieutenant Gregory to take three gigs with only their crew and one settee in each boat, and proceed down the St. Lawrence, secrete himself on some of the islands, and watch a favourable opportunity to surprise a brigade of loaded boats, and either bring them off or destroy them, as circumstances would point out.
Lieutenant Gregory left here with his party on the evening of the 15th instant, and proceeded to the “ Thousand Islands,” where he hauled his boats on shore and concealed them : saw two brigalies of boats pass, one up the river with troops, of course too strong for our little party; the other down the river einpty, and not worth taking.
Lieutenant Gregory found the enemy had gun-boats stationed between Kingston and Prescott, within about six miles of each other, and that they had a telegraph look out, in almost every high island, so that they convey intelligence with great expedition.
Yesterday morning, between 9 and 10 o'clock, lieutenant Gregory finding himself discovered, and a gun-boat close to him, he instantly formed the bold design to board her, which he did, and carried her without losing a man: one of the enemy was badlý wounded. She proved to be the fine gun-boat Black Snake or Number 9, and mounted one eighteen pounder and manned with 18 men, chiefly royal marines, (a list of which is enclosed). Lieutenant Gregory manned his prize and proceeded up the St. Lawrence, but was soon discovered and pursued by a very large gun-boat mounting two heavy guns and rowed with upwards of forty oars, which overhauled him fast. He kept possession of his prize until the enemy threw their shot over him ; he then very reluctantly (but I think properly) took out all his prisoners and scuttled the gun-boat, which sunk instantly, and escaped the enemy although so heavily loaded. Lieutenant Gregory arrived safe this morning with all his prisoners.
Permit me to recommend this gallant young officer to your notice and patronage. He is not surpassed by any of his grade in zeal, intelligence, and intrepidity. Sailing master Vaughan and Mr. Dixon, each commanding a gig under lieutenant Gregory, are entitled to my acknowledgements for their zeal and activity on all occasions to render service to their country, more particularly on the last expedition, when, from their knowledge of the river, they rendered the most important services by pointing out the proper channels to elude the pursuit of the enemy. Will
you be pleased to direct in what manner the prisoners are to be disposed of.
I have the honour to be, &c.
ISAAC CHAUNCEY. Secretary of the Navy.
Extract of a letter from general P. Stuart, of the Maryland
militia, to the Secretary of War, dated June 23d, 1814. “ I have ordered on to Washington, under an officer who is directed upon his arrival to report himself to you, five prisoners and one deserter. The prisoners were taken on the 21st instant by a detachment of Maryland militia under my command, aided by a squadron of horse from the district of Columbia, under the command of major Peter.
“ The cruel course of war waged by the enemy upon our extensive water courses, has forced me to call into service a great body of our militia.
“I must express my thanks for the aid so promptly sent from your department. It was a source of considerable regret that inajor Peter of the artillery, notwithstanding his great exertions, could not join us till morning. By his aid, I feel confident we could have destroyed the enemy's schooner sent up to take off
the residue of the tobacco. Major Peter's squadron acted with promptitude and ardor, displaying a temper which will render them essentially useful to the nation. The frequent injuries which arise to the service from intelligence communicated to the enemy, have determined me to suffer no deserter to remain within my command.”
Sunday, June 25th, 1814.-10 A. M. SIR,
This morning, at 4 A. M. a combined attack of the artille ry, marine corps and flotilla, was made upon the enemy's two frigates, at the mouth of the creek.
After two hours engagement, they got under way and made sail down the river. They are now warping round Point Patience, and I am now moving up the Patuxent with my flotilla. My floss is acting midshipman Asquith killed, and ten others killed and wounded.
Mr. Blake,* the bearer of this, was a volunteer in my barge. He will give you every other information.
With respect, &c.
JOSHUA BARNEY. The Secretary of the Navy.
PHILADELPHIA, June 25th, 1814. SIR,
On Sunday last the British frigate Belvidera captured a small schooner belonging to Indian river, about ten miles above Cape Henlopen; and after having her in possession thirty-four hours, ransomed her for 800 dollars. I was yesterday morning on the eve of leaving this, with about 30 officers and men, who are employed here in the equipment of the Guerriere, to join the flotilla, but received information that the Belvidera left the bay on the 21st.
The flotilla is down as low as Egg Island Flats, from which it came up to New Castle only the day before the Belvidera came into the Bay, for the purpose of replenishing its provisions.
With great respect, &c.
JOHN RODGERS. The Secretary of the Navy.
CAMP NEAR ST. LEONARD'S, June 26th, 1814. SIR,
We decided on attacking the enemy this morning at daybreak ; after two and a half or three hours cannonading, he
* Mr. T. P. Andrews, of Washington, accompanied Mr. Blake ; they both acted as captains of marincs, under major William B. Barney.-Edit.
thought proper to retreat down the river, and commodore Barney has taken advantage of his absence to pass
the Patuxent. I was constrained to precipitate the attack before I was fully prepared, from the circumstance of all the enemy's small vessels having left the river. The ground I was obliged to occuру for a battery, consisted of a high bluff point, having the Patuxent on the right, and St. Leonard's Creek on the left, with which the communication was over a flat piece of ground, subject to be enfiladed from the Patuxent, and the hill on which the guns were to be placed, liable to a severe fire from the same quarter; therefore, in case of an attack, the enemy might have rendered our situation very uncomfortable, by stationing a small vessel so as to command the low ground I speak of.
We committed a great many blunders during the action, or our success would probably have been more complete. I forbear to enter into minute particulars, lest I should cast an indirect censure on some officers, perhaps undeserved, for I must acknowledge, I was so much engaged at the battery, as to have but an indistinct knowledge of what passed elsewhere. But the fact is, the infantry and light artillery decided upon retreating without my orders, before they had lost a single man killed or wounded; and at the time too, when the enemy were mapouvring to the rear of our position with their barges. The consequence of this moving was very disadvantageous; the men at the guns perceiving the infantry retreating, and the enemy getting into the rear, their numbers began sensibly to diminish, and I was pretty soon left with only men enough to work one gun, which I was necessitated to turn to the rear for the sake of keeping the barges in check. Finally, the few men that remained were so exhausted with fatigue, we found it impracticable to fire any more, and the limbers and horses which had been ordered down the hill, having disappeared and gone, I know not where, I found myself under the painful necessity of spiking the guns, to prevent their being used by the enemy, should he get possession of them.
I might, in justice to the infantry, acknowledge they did not take to fight, but quitted the ground in perfect order ; after a while I was able to halt them, and bring thein back. In the mean time the enemy were getting under way, and retiring down the river: from the precipitancy of his retreat, I infer he must have suffered considerably. From some untoward circumstances, I had it not in my power to observe the effect of each shot we fired, otherwise I think its destruction would be complete.
Commodore Barney furnished me with twenty excellent men from his Rotilla to work the guns. By some mismanagement in loading with the hot shot, one poor fellow had his arm blown off, which is the only material accident we sustained. One of the enemy's rockets passed through an ammunition box, which had been injudiciously placed, and exploded it, which did some dam