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/Ifcunsell s 
Ibistoncal Series. 

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i I 








Author of" The Life and Times of Sir William Johnson, Bart." "Memoirs of 

General and Madame Riedesel" "History of New York City" " Life and 

Writings of Col. William L. Stone" "Sir John Johnson s 

Orderly Book" etc., etc. 


" Far from me and from my friends be such frigid philosophy as may conduct us 
indifferent and unmoved over any ground which has been dignified by wisdom, bravery, 
or virtue. That man is little to be envied whose patriotism would not gain force upon 
the plain of Marathon, or whose piety would not grow warmer among the ruins of lona." 
Dr. Johnson, in his " Tour of the Hebrides." 

ALBANY, N. Y. : 











Ubis IDolume 






IN 1776, Professor August Ludwig Schlozer, of the Uni 
versity of Gottingen, established a monthly magazine called 
" Schlozer s Letter Exchange," having for one of its objects 
the publication of private letters written by officers to their 
relatives and friends in Germany, from those portions of 
the world then engaged in war. This publication was 
continued through the year 1782, and consequently con 
tains many letters of the most interesting character from 
Hessian and Brunswick military men who were serving on 
the British side during the Revolutionary War; and also 
one from Baron Steuben on his first arrival in America, 
giving a detailed account of his reception by the authori 
ties at Portsmouth, N. H., and later by Washington, the 
military formation of the American troops, and his suc 
cessful efforts in disciplining the Continental army. These 
letters are from Staunton, Va. (whither a portion of the 
" Convention Troops " were sent), Philadelphia, Savannah, 
New-Port, Cambridge, Boston, New York, Brookland (Brook 
lyn), different parts of New England, and Canada. They 

vi Preface. 

contain much new and valuable information regarding 
the habits and customs of the inhabitants of the places 
whence they were written ; minute descriptions of dif 
ferent personages, such as Gates, Hancock, Carleton, St. 
Luc, and others ; and also the best account extant of the 
march of the " Convention Troops" from Saratoga through 
New-England to Cambridge. The letter from New-England 
contains a graphic description of the costumes and general 
appearance of the Continentals and militia, to which the 
attention of the reader is especially called, and a narrative 
of the Battles of Saratoga by an eye-witness, which is by 
far the best we have yet had ; also, a very realistic account 
of the trial of Major Henley and the part taken in it by 
Burgoyne the only one written from a German standpoint. 

This work was first brought to my notice by Mr. Edward 
J. Lowell, the author of the " Hessians in the American 
Revolution." " I do not think," writes Mr. Lowell, " of any 
printed collection concerning the Revolution which so well 
deserves to be translated. The correspondent with Bur- 
goyne s army was an observant and lively writer." Through 
the kindness of Fraulien Agnes Sack, of Brunswick, Germany, 
I procured a set of the first edition of this rare publication, 
and now present to the reader, in an English dress, those 
letters which relate to our Revolution. 

As I said in my Preface to Pausctis Journal, there are 
two ways of translating. One is to paraphrase the original ; 
the other is to give the text literally. The first method 
admits of an elegant rendering by which the different 
shades of an author s meaning are often sacrificed to beauty 

Preface. vii 

of diction : the second, at the expense of style, aims to 
give clearly the writer s ideas. This last is the plan I have 
adopted in this translation, believing that the reader would 
prefer to know just what the correspondents intended to 

Among those who have assisted me by their counsel and 
suggestions, I have particularly to mention and thank Dr. 
Kingsford, author of the latest history of Canada ; Mr. Fred. 
C. Wiirtele, Librarian of the Quebec Historical Society ; Mr. 
J. G. Rosengarten, the author of the " German Soldier in 
the Wars of the United States ;" Professor Carl Meyer, of 
Rutgers College ; Mr. S. O. Lee, of Huntington, L. I. ; and 
Mr. Bauman L. Belden, of Elizabeth, N. J. Mr. August 
Hund, an accomplished scholar and himself a German, has 
also rendered so much aid in this translation, that I have 
thought it only just to associate his name with mine on the 
title-page. The annotations, of course, are my own. 

Believing, moreover, that it would afford pleasure to my 
subscribers, I have given, by way of introduction, a sketch 
of Schlozer the materials for which have been gathered 
from the " Life of August Ludwig Schlozer," written by his 
eldest son, Christian von Schlozer, and published at Leipsic, 
in 1828. For the use of this work, which, long out of print, 
is seldom if ever met with, I am again indebted to the cour 
tesy of my friend Mr. Edward J. Lowell. 





Sketch of Schlozer, 9 


Letter from Canada by a German Staff-officer. Nov. 2, 

1776, 13 

Letter relating to the First Campaign of the Brunswick- 

ers in Canada, Nov. 3, 1776, ..... 38 
Private Letter from Canada, Mch. 9 Apr. 20, 1777, . 58 
Letter from Castle-Town, July 27, 1777, ... 84 
Letter from the Camp at Duer s House, by a Native of 

Brunswick serving in Burgoyne s Army, dated at 

Fort Edward, Aug. 7, 1777, 96 

Private Letter from New England, Nov. 15, 1777 Oct. 

10, 1778, dated at Cambridge, Mass., Nov. 15, 1777, 106 
Letter from a General Officer in the Barracks near Boston, 

Feb. 5, 1778, . . ... 172 

Letters from a Brunswick Officer, dated at the Camp near 

Boston in New England, Oct. 10, 1778, . . . 174 
Letter from Staunton, Va., June i, 1779, . . . 178 


Letter from a Hessian Chaplain, Brookland, near New 

York, Sept. 7, 1776, 185 


x Table of Contents. 


Description of New York, Long and Staten Islands, in 

1776, 1 88 

Letter from Rhode Island, Jan 24, 1777, . . , 203 
Letter from a Field Chaplain, New York Island, Dec. 7, 

1777, 212 

Description of the Country around Philadelphia in 1778, 

Jan. 18, 1778, . 214 

Letter from Philadelphia, May 7, 1778, . . . 221 
Description of Philadelphia, its People etc., June 2, 1778 224 
Letter from Rhode Island, Sept. 8, 1778, . . . 228 
Letter from Savannah, Jan, 16, 1779, .... 230 
Letter from Maj.-Gen. Baron Steuben, to Privy Coun 
cillor Baron de Frank, in Hechingen. In Camp at 
New Winsor on the North River, July 4, 1779, 2 39 


Sketch of the Recollet Convent in Quebec, . . . 256 


AUGUST LUDWIG SCHLOZER was, perhaps, one of 
the most distinguished scholars and historians of his 
time. His father was a country clergyman at Yagg- 
stadt, a village in Hohenlohe-Kirchberg, where his 
only son, the subject of the present sketch, was born, 
July 5th, 1735. His father dying when he was five 
years old, his education was taken in charge by his 
grandfather, who sent him to school at Langenburg. 
He was an exceedingly precocious lad, being consid 
ered what is now termed an "infant prodigy," and at 
the age of twelve years was an accomplished Latin 
scholar. From Langenburg he went to Wertheim, 
residing in the family of his eldest sister, the wife of 
the pastor of the town, Schulz (father of the cele 
brated Oriental scholar of that name), until the autumn 
"of 1751 ; when, at the age of sixteen, he entered the 
University of Wittenberg, famous not only for its 
own sake, but for having been the place at which, in 


io Sketch of Schlozer. 

1517, the Reformation under Martin Luther took its 
rise. Here he remained until the spring of 1754 
taking, meanwhile, high rank as a debater when he 
went to the University of Gottingen, and pursued his 
studies at that seat of learning until the following 
year, when he engaged himself as a teacher at Stock 
holm. Two years afterward he removed to Upsala 
in order to take advantage of the valuable library at 
that celebrated university ; and here he seems to have 
completed his collegiate course. Nor, had he long 
come to maturity when his learning was sought by 
various universities of prominence. During his life 
time he filled successively the chairs of Political Econ 
omy and Diplomacy in the Imperial University of 
Moscow, Polite Letters and the Fine Arts at St. 
Petersburg and Mittau, and Polite Letters at the 
University of Gottingen. He also held at Gottingen 
the position of President of the Philosophical Faculty 
and Doctor of Laws and Jurisprudence, having been 
the first Protestant elected in that university to the 
latter honor. He was also a great traveller ; and his 
journeys through Russia, Sweden, Italy, and France 
contributed, together with the fame of his scholarly at 
tainments, to widen the circle of his acquaintance, and 
thus make his name still more known. 

It was while Professor at Gottingen that his Brief- 

Sketch of Schlozer. 1 1 

wechsel (from which the letters in this volume are 
taken) was published the origin of which was as fol 
lows : Having a very extensive acquaintance with men 
of letters, with whom he was in constant correspond 
ence, he conceived the idea of publishing from time to 
time a portion of these, so that the valuable news they 
contained regarding the social, political, and military 
events then occurring in different parts of the world 
might be made accessible to the public. A number 
of educated and talented Hanoverian, Brunswick and 
Hessian officers, then serving in America, also volun 
teered to aid him in this work ; and the result was his 
Briefwechsel, at least eight numbers of which were 
issued yearly. The idea took like wild-fire ; and, with 
in a very short time, the circulation of the magazine 
had increased to such an extent that even at the very 
low price at which it was sold, viz., two gute Grose hen 
(two cents in our money), it brought its editor an in 
come of three thousand rix-dollars an income from 
literature alone which, with the exception of Kotzc- 
bue and Goethe, had seldom been exceeded by any 
German writer at that time. 

Physically, Schlozer was a little above the average 
height, very thin, and, in the early part of his life, 
sickly-looking though of an iron constitution, and 
his features, notwithstanding his massive brow, repel- 

12 Sketch of Schlozer . 

lent, rather than attractive. Morally, he was of an in 
corruptible integrity, of great conscientiousness, very 
frank and open, and grateful for any attention. In 
temperament, he was, at the same time, both choleric 
and melancholy, and two of his salient traits were his 
intense loyalty to his government, and his anxiety to 
perform faithfully his duties as a citizen. We are 
further told that he was a man of great energy and 
industry. This will readily be believed when it is 
learned that, in addition to his didactic duties, he 
found time to write no less than sixty-eight abstruse 
and voluminous works, some of which, on history and 
political ethics, have, in his own country, still an au 
thoritative value. 

Upon his death, which was caused by apoplexy on 
the Qth of September 1809, his family were the recipi 
ents of many tokens of sympathy, not only from num 
erous learned and scientific societies of which he was a 
member, but from men of high standing, and even 
from Royalty itself. One of these marks of respect 
was a letter from the Emperor Alexander of Russia, 
in which, as a particular tribute to the memory of 
Schlozer, he appointed his nephew vice-consul of 


BATISCAMP, a Parish in Canada, Nov. 2, 1776. 


The whole of Canada contains but three cities, viz., 
Quebec, Three Rivers and Montreal all of which are 
situated on the St. Lawrence River. All the other 
European settlements are divided into Parishes or 
Forts. These Parishes are so numerous that upwards 
of seven thousand fighting men could be mustered in 
a stretch of land reaching from Bee Island (situated 
not far from the Gulf of St. Lawrence) to Montreal, 
and farther south to Lake Champlain. 

A Parish is a kind of village composed of houses 
not placed alongside of each other, but scattered 
about at 100, 200, and even 600 paces apart wood 
lands often intervening between. You will, there 
fore, readily see that a Parish is generally several 
leagues in extent.* The main road [highway] invari- 

* A French league is about two and three-quarter Eng 
lish miles. 


14 Letter from Canada. 

ably runs directly into them ; and from the fact that 
the houses are built on both sides of the road, one, in 
passing, can take in the entire village at a glance ; and 
should a stream or a river be situated in the rear of a 
Parish and running toward it, you will probably also 
find houses built along its banks. The houses are 
invariably placed side by side along the road ; never 
in the rear of each other. Every habitant has his 
fields, meadows and gardens either in front or at the 
rear of his house, just as circumstances and the char 
acter of the ground will permit ; and he also owns a 
piece of woodland in the vicinity. Every field and 
meadow is enclosed by a light fence, which, if neces 
sary, can be shifted about. Whoever has seen the en 
closed marshy lands in the neighborhood of Bremen 
will understand precisely my meaning ; and indeed, 
take it all in all, Canadian agriculture has much in 
common with that city. The fallow lands furnish the 
best of pasture for cattle, and after a certain time, 
develop into the best of corn-fields. 

Until late in the winter, the cattle roam at will either 
about the enclosures or in the woods, both day and 
night. Utilizing the manure of cattle is unknown here, 
and, consequently, the straw-crop is unusually poor. 
Those fields which are to be planted in the following 
year are ploughed late in the fall, and remain in that 
state during the entire winter. 

In the spring, the corn-seed is sowed, and then the 
field is harrowed by three good harrows. Very good 
wheat is raised in Canada ; also considerable barley 

Letter from Canada. 15 

and oats ; but summer and winter crops of rye are 
never cultivated. Peas, tares* and beans are also 
grown ; and in the gardens you may find white cab 
bage, white and yellow turnips, potatoes, pumpkins, 
cucumbers, leeks, onions, parsley, and quite often 
melons and asparagus. In the vicinity of Montreal 
winter fruit is good and plentiful. The poorer in 
habitants do not bother themselves with the cultivation 
of fruit-trees, because, in the winter, unless very great 
care is exercised, a large proportion of them are liable 
to die. I have eaten here good apples, excellent pears, 
peaches and apricots ; the latter fruit, however, is ex 
ceedingly rare. Hazel- and wall-nuts [walnuts] are 
not to be found ; but raspberries, and wild strawberries 
grow abundantly in the woods. 

The breed of cattle raised in Canada is excellent. 
Every habitant has his horse, oxen, cows, pigs and 
sheep ; and once in a while though very seldom 
he keeps goats. The oxen weigh from 300 to 600 
pounds each, are very fat, and the flavor of their flesh 
is excellent. Canada delivered to our army, the cur 
rent year, several thousand head of cattle, and yet 
there appears to be no scarcity in this respect. One, 
too, cannot wish for better milk or butter. Cheese, 
however, is but seldom made. Each inhabitant has 
chickens, turkeys and geese in plenty. Tame ducks 
are not to be seen, but may be found wild in large 

* A plant more common in Europe than in Canada, and 
extensively cultivated for fodder. 

1 6 Letter from Canada. 

numbers on the rivers and streams. The same may 
also be said of pigeons. 

Thoughout the whole of Canada neither beer nor 
brandy is made. Rum is the only liquor manufactured ; 
and the spruce-bee"r, which is made from the tender 
sprouts of the spruce-tree, is at first disgustingly sweet, 
then bitter and with a resinous taste. Wine is not so 
very dear, A very good so-called red wine (vin de Bor 
deaux) the only French wine to be had can be 
bought at wholesale for from 8 to 10 pence a bottle. 
Madeira, Port and other kinds of Spanish wine can 
also be purchased quite cheaply. French white wines, 
however, as well as Burgundy, Champagne, Rhine, and 
all French brandies, are largely contraband goods. 

In the centre of each Parish are to be found a church 
and a parsonage ; and the leagues are computed from 
one church to another. The houses of the inhabitants 
are square and all of the same style of architecture ; 
the only difference being that one, perhaps, may be 
larger than another. When stone can be had, the walls 
of the houses are built of that material, and in default 
of that, of wood ; and this, too, notwithstanding the 
severe cold of the winter months. Indeed, I should 
say that less than one twentieth of all the houses in 
Canada are built of stone. I have, as yet, seen no 
stone-quarries here. Flint, brought from the banks of 
rivers where it has been deposited from the tops of 
mountains by the action of frost, is the kind of stone 
which is used in building. Brick and tiles are un 
known in Canada. 

Letter from Canada. 17 

The interiors of stone and wooden houses are as 
like as two peas. The foundation of a wooden house 
consists of four beams, upon which is placed the 
scantling. These beams are laid in the form of a square 
with the corners joined together. Smaller beams are 
then nailed between the four upright posts, composing 
the framework of the house ; and the chinks are filled 
in with moss, small stones, mortar and lime. The out 
side walls are then covered with lime or with boards, 
as the case may be ; and, for this reason, such a house 
(if we except the windows) generally has the appear 
ance of a shed. Sometimes, instead of covering the 
outer walls with boards, shingles are used, which give 
the house quite an aristocratic appearance. In the 
interior, the walls are covered with smoothly planed 
boards; likewise the ceiling. No lime [i.e. plaster] is 
put upon the walls as with us at home. 

All the partitions of the house are built with wooden 
boards. ,For this reason, one will find the three follow 
ing inconveniences. First : should any one be walking 
about the rooms, you will hear a slight creaking ; 
secondly : should any one be walking on the floor 
overhead, the one underneath would be in momentary 
expectation of having him drop down upon his head ; 
and, thirdly : should one talk, every word can be 
heard, either in the next room or in the kitchen ! Take 
it all in all, however, the rooms are regularly built and 
have a well-proportioned height. In order to enter 
the house, you must mount two or three steps. In 
every Parish, you will rarely find more than two houses 

1 8 Letter from Canada. 

two stories high. Even the houses of the seigneurs 
and rich inhabitants are seldom more than one story in 
height, and are but a little larger than those of the 
ordinary inhabitant. The vestibule generally contains 
the kitchen (similar in character to those of most of 
French villages) ; and the hearth consists of a large 
fireplace with two iron andirons capable of holding 
half of a tree-trunk. The iron cooking-pots are ranged 
about the fire. The kitchens are so clean that they are 
used as a " living-room" until the arrival of cold weather. 
The cooking-utensils, plates, bowls, etc., are of Eng 
lish stone-ware or delft ; very rarely of tin. They are 
put in closets ; for large dressers or tables are un. 
known. Instead, a small table, or the floor, is used- 
Next to the kitchen is a room generally used as a 
sleeping-room. Houses containing two rooms are 
scarce ; and when they contain three are considered 
very genteel. The windows extend from the top of 
the ceiling to a short distance from the floor. They 
consist of two casements with twelve large square panes 
fastened on the outside with putty in a wooden frame. 
Two bolts, one placed above and the other below, are 
used for closing the windows. When these bolts are 
withdrawn, the windows always open into the room. 
Every room has a fireplace. At the beginning of 
winter the fireplace is walled up ; and a large, square 
iron stove is placed in the centre of the room, the pipe 
belonging to it leading into the chimney. As yet, I 
have seen no stoves with head-pieces.* 

* Alluding to the stoves in Germany, which are generally 
ornamented with mythological and classical designs. 

Letter from Canada. 19 

In every room one will find at least one bed capable 
of holding two persons. As a rule, these beds have 
a large square canopy, fastened to the ceiling, with 
curtains which are generally drawn up. All bedsteads 
are square and without posts. The best of them have 
a bed well filled with straw nearly a foot in thickness, 
and over which is thrown a nicely stuffed feather-bed. 
For the head is a bolster nearly a foot in thickness 
(rouleau is the name given them in the inns through 
out France). The bed, also, has two linen sheets ; 
and for covering there are four thick woollen blankets. 
Furthermore, every person receives a pillow a yard 
long by three quarters wide. You lie perfectly straight 
in bed ; and I have already acquired the art of doing 
without superfluous bolsters in the future. As soon 
as you get out of bed, it is made up and covered with 
a quilt of silesia, calico or wool, with the ends hanging 
down over the sides. The poorest inhabitant has such 
a covering for his bed by day ; nor, indeed, have I 
ever seen cleaner beds in any country. In the houses 
of the poorer people all the beds are placed in one 

The Canadian is not bothered with unnecessary 
furniture. Two pine tables, with their necessary ac 
companiments, eight wooden chairs (never more) with 
red bottoms and which sometimes have cushions, a few 
pine closets, and seldom more than one bureau of the 
same wood, constitute his entire outfit. Sofas, settees, 
arm-chairs, writing-tables, etc., are unknown. Coffee 
and tea services of English yellow-ware are common, 

2O Letter from Canada. 

as are other articles for the table. I have frequently 
seen ordinary inhabitants in possession of several dozen 
of silver spoons, knives and forks, and other silver-ware, 
although they may not have been quite of the latest 

Neither will you find any door in the house having 
a lock, not even in the houses of the rich. A long 
iron latch keeps the door closed, a bolt being used to 
fasten it. It is but seldom that you will find a water- 
closet, either in the house or in the yard. All roofs, 
even those of churches, are covered with boards or 
shingles. The houses, as well as the barns and stables, 
are free from all fences or stockades. The stables are 
built of hewn logs covered with sods, straw, or the 
bark of the birch ; and I am astonished to find that 
cattle can survive the winter in these enclosures. 

The whole of Canada is ruled by a Governor resid 
ing in Quebec. The present one is Carleton, who is 
also General of the English Infantry. He commands 
the army in Canada, as well as exercises an entire 
supervision over the military and civil government. 
The army, as well as the Canadians, love General 
Carleton dearly a fact to be attributed to his many 
noble qualities. No people ever loved their ruler more 
than the Canadians do theirs, and this may be said 
almost without an exception. The Canadians, as well 
as the Indians in the vicinity, seem to belong to him 
body and soul : we are indebted to him for having the 
Indians (one thousand of whom are in the army) on 

Letter from Canada. 21 

our side.* Next to the Governor, there is a Lieut 
enant-Governor, who, however, has only charge of the 
police, the civil service, and all financial matters. The 
present Lieutenant-Governor is named Cramahe also 
an upright, disinterested man, and one universally be 
loved. Under him there are several counselors, or 
rather secretaries, to the Government, all of whom are 
persons of distinction in this vast territory. 

In Quebec is located the chief tribunal for the deci 
sion of all matters pertaining to civil and criminal law. 
It is made up of native-born Canadians, and has a Chief 
Justice, together with advisory counsellors [associate 
justices] and assessors. In Montreal there is likewise 
a judicial tribunal, which in some respects, however, 
ranks below that at Quebec. In the spring both tribu 
nals send judges into all the Parishes of Canada for 
the purpose of trying all minor cases, and to see, at the 
same time, that the law is properly enforced. The 
more important causes are tried before the full tribu 
nal, in which case the litigants must hire counsel who 
are to be found in Quebec and Montreal. Should the 

* Of General Carleton the ablest general by far who 
served in America General Riedesel, in a letter to his wife, 
dated June 8, 1776, gives a peculiar picture. " In order," 
he writes, " to get an idea of his personal appearance, imagine 
the Abbe Jerusalem. The figure, face, walk, and sound of 
his voice are just like the Abbe s, and had he the black suit 
wig, one could not discover the least difference." The Abbe 
here mentioned was the tutor of the hereditary prince of 
Brunswick, Charles William Ferdinand. 

22 Letter from Canada. 

sum involved in a case exceed ^500 sterling, an appeal 
may be made either to the Canadian Government or to 
his Majesty s Privy Counsellors at London. With the 
exception of the two above-named cities, no other 
courts of justice and no other advocates can be found 
in the whole of Canada. As a rule, two or three Par 
ishes have one regularly appointed notary in common, 
who draws up contracts, agreements, wills, marriage- 
settlements etc. 

Canada has another peculiar political institution 
which dates back from the time when the French were 
its masters. All the Parishes are divided into three 
districts, each one having a Colonel of Militia at its 
head. These three Colonels, who reside in Quebec, 
Three Rivers and Montreal, execute through their 
subordinates all the commands, notices, etc., of the 
Government, and collect all of the taxes. These sub 
ordinates, who are called Lieutenant-Colonels and 
Majors of Militia, have, in their turn, charge of several 
smaller districts, and command the captains of militia. 

Each Parish has its Captain of Militia, and, should it 
be a large one, it may have two. These captains are 
residents of the Parishes, and have nothing, excepting 
the office they hold, to distinguish them from their 
neighbors. They work and clothe themselves the 
same as the rest of the inhabitants, and receive their 
positions through election and confirmation of the 
same by the Colonel. In fact, they occupy about the 
same rank in the Parishes that our magistrates or 
mayors do at home. The commands of the Govern- 

Letter from Canada. 23 

ment are promulgated by them in the Parishes ; they 
see to it that they are obeyed ; in short, they enforce 
the police laws and are held responsible for the behavior 
of the inhabitants. In addition to this, they have to 
provide quarters for the soldiers that march through 
their Parishes, and furnish them with all necessary 
transportation. When required by the Generals, they 
order out the inhabitants for working purposes, such as 
driving, etc., and also furnish the supplies they have 
been ordered to procure. They likewise see to it that 
the roads and bridges in the several Parishes are kept 
in proper repair. They also supervise the forwarding 
from Parish to Parish of the letters and military orders 
of the different Generals to each other, and are respon 
sible for such documents reaching their proper desti 
nation. Under them are two Lieutenants of Police 
who assist them in their work, as well as several Ser 
geants, through whom their orders are delivered to the 
inhabitants. These Captains of Militia are held by the 
Government to a strict accountability for everything 
going on in their several Parishes. Captains who 
should prove insubordinate, or should foster rebellious 
ideas by designedly refusing to exercise their authority 
or otherwise, would be harshly dealt with, even if they 
were not punished by death. Such instances have 
already occurred. On the other hand, the authority 
of these men is sustained in various ways ; and those 
who are refractory are either executed or put to work 
on the fortifications on the frontiers. If a Parish con 
tains a number of rebellious inhabitants, their cattle are 

24 Letter from Canada. 

forfeited ; the fire is extinguished on the hearth ; and 
the roofs of the houses are pulled down. This to them 
is a severe punishment, for they generally have large 
families whom they dearly love. I have already seen 
numerous instances of this ; and, indeed, a number of 
houses belonging to those rebels who are at present 
in the army of the enemy will probably share the same 
fate within a short time. Among these Militia Cap 
tains are some very brave, intelligent and determined 
men, who are worthy of the greatest respect, and 
whom the Governors have no hesitation in inviting to 
sit at their tables. Tall pine-trees, with the bark peeled 
off and with a small flag fluttering at their tops, 
are placed before the houses of the Militia Captains 
and their Lieutenants, in order that their abodes may 
readily be found. 

Nearly every Parish has a seigneur living in it. 
When the French first settled Canada, very large 
tracts or districts were given byt he Crown to mem 
bers of the nobility, and to officers who had rendered 
great services. Such tracts were from three to four 
leagues long by the same in width, and the titled 
owners parcelled out portions of them to those who 
desired to build upon the land. In this way, Parishes 
and the houses in them originated. The seigneur 
therefore, virtually owns all the property in the Parish, 
or the land upon which the inhabitants have built ; 
and every tenant must pay him a yearly sum amount 
ing to several piasters as well as tithes consisting 

Letter from Canada. 25 

of calves, sheep, poultry, etc. * The seigneur, more 
over, has the privilege of being the first buyer of all 
of his tenants superfluous grain or cattle that they 
may wish to sell. His principal source of income, 
however, is derived from his mills ; for the reason that 
all the farmers have to bring their grain to him to be 
ground ; and this, in itself, brings in a very pretty 
rental. Again, if one of the inhabitants sells his 
house, the seigneur receives one sixth of the selling 
price. The so-called chateaux of the seigneurs, how 
ever, are not to be compared with those that we have 
at home. A house similar to those I have already 
described, with one room more, and at the utmost 
having but two stories, is the home of the seigneiir. 
Very often, indeed, the seigneur ie is dwarfed into in 
significance by the other houses in the Parish ; for 
every now and then you will meet with very sub 
stantial residences, built with taste and in the latest 
style of architecture. When Canada was ceded to 
England, a number of French seigneurs sold their seig- 
neuries to Englishmen, and then returned to France. 
The seigneurs have no courts in their Parishes, and as far 
as I am aware, no system of vassalage. The owners of 
seigneuries bear the names of ancient and distinguished 
French families, though they have lost much of their 
old-time splendor. All the inhabitants of the Parishes 

*Thus, much of the land in New York State was sold 
under the same conditions, which eventually gave rise to the 
Anti-rent War. 

26 Letter from Canada. 

are related to them ; and many of their children have 
become plain farmers themselves. The seigneur is 
not ashamed to marry a pretty girl belonging to one 
of his tenants; and thus his brothers-in-law may often 
be honest farmers or mechanics. Many of his tenants 
have bought their freeholds from him, and conse 
quently no longer pay him ground-rent. It is for 
this reason that numbers of seigneiirs may be seen 
who have fallen into a state of decadence, and who 
are hardly to be distinguished from the rest of their 
neighbors. Occasionally, however, some are met with 
who still live in brilliant style, and whom the Govern 
ment seeks to draw into its service. There are num 
bers of them in the suite of General Carleton, acting 
as aides-de-camps. Notwithstanding their decadence, 
however, the poor seigneurs are treated with the same 
respect as of old ; and no inhabitant would dream of 
meeting his seigneur without showing him all proper 
deference. Several rich merchants of Quebec and 
Montreal, by the way, are the proprietors of their own 

New houses are springing up yearly in all the Par 
ishes. All seigneurs have still plenty of timber to 
sell. The ground belonging to a " habitation " is 4 
arpens * in length and from 30 to 40 in depth. The 
new habitant has thus a large piece of ground which 
he can divide up with his children and grand-children 

* A word of Gallic origin, a furlong; being, according to 
Doomsday Book, equal to 100 perches. 

Letter from Canada. 27 

whenever they wish to set up housekeeping for 
themselves. In preparing his land for cultivation, 
he first burns down the trees ; and when they fall, he 
uses the timber thus obtained for his new house. He 
then lays bare the roots of the trees by digging ; sets 
fire to them ; and when they have been consumed, his 
land is ready for the plough. At first, he is content to 
live in a poor and miserable house more like a hut 
than anything else containing but one room and a 
kitchen. From time to time, as he increases his 
productive land by ridding it of the stumps, he adds 
additional rooms to his house ; so that in the course 
of twenty years he has a good habitation and very 
excellent land. All the ground within a distance of 
one fourth of a league from the houses has now been 
cleared of timber, and consequently the habitans have 
fine fields. The forests of Canada have not been 
despoiled to any great extent. The trees which have 
been selected for removal have a fire built around 
their base, which generally burns until the trees fall. 
If this is not sufficient, a few blows of the axe finish 
the work. For this reason, the forests often present a 
desolate appearance ; and as one looks upon the charred 
and withered trees, he easily imagines that they must 
have been struck by fire from heaven. These 
"clearings" in the forests yield very fine crops of 
grass and hay, thus furnishing most excellent fodder 
for the cattle. Nearly all Canadians many of whom 
are young build new habitations for themselves, and 
are presented by their parents with cattle and articles 

28 Letter from Canada. 

for housekeeping. " Be fruitful and multiply" seems 
to be their motto ; for the family of the new habitant 
soon begins to increase. He has, however, to work 
hard and live economically for a number of years be 
fore he is able to fill his barns with grain and enlarge 
his stock. Since the older sons receive help from 
their parents in establishing themselves in new homes, 
the younger sons generally inherit the old homestead. 

In every house the habitans engage in various 
trades. In them you will find tavern-keepers, wine 
and liquor dealers, well-to-do merchants, shoemakers, 
tailors, wheelwrights, cabinet-makers, etc. In each 
Parish there is a post-house, having from five to six 
caliches. One English shilling, or seven groschen, is 
charged for every league gone over in a cale che ; and 
one is enabled by these vehicles to travel very rapidly. 
The ordinary post in Canada is as regular as with us 
at home. The seigneurs, the post-houses, and the 
houses of the Captains of Militia are exempted from 
furnishing quarters to the troops, as well as from pro 
viding conveyances in war-time. 

Really, the Canadians are excellent people. Their 
ancestors are French, but they call themselves Cana 
dians, and the English Government looks upon this 
with favor. They are austere rather than volatile or 
lively, and have lost much of the vivacity of their an 
cestors. They are the very reverse oi prdvenant and 
engageant, and it is difficult to gain their confidence ; 
but when you have gained it, they are with you heart 
and soul. By nature they have the true droiture du 

Letter from Canada. 29 

cceur, and are inclined to fair dealing. Having once 
secured their trust, a scoundrel could easily persuade 
them to do unlawful things and bring about their 
ruin. For this reason many of them have taken 
sides with the rebels, without knowing why they did 
so. The principal instigators of these troubles have 
been Frenchmen and adventurers who drifted into 
Canada at the time of the war between England and 
France, and who have made them believe that France 
intends to send an army to Canada. 

The Canadians are an intelligent people, and most 
of them are veritable honimes cCesprit. Their ex 
pressions and conversation are always to the point ; 
and, in addressing strangers, or while talking with each 
other they are always polite without indulging in ridic 
ulous compliments. They are talkative among them 
selves, but you seldom see them laughing, jumping 
about, dancing, or indulging in badinage. The wor 
ries of life, hard work, and trouble have caused their 
features to assume a severe look, which might lead 
you to believe that their faces were but masks hiding 
fierce and stealthy thoughts behind them. This im 
pression disappears however, upon closer acquaintance. 
In view of the present times, many of them appear 
to be the possessors of guilty consciences, a fact that 
can be plainly read upon their countenances. I have 
indeed passed through Parishes in which the faces of 
all the habitans seemed to betray their rebellious ten 
dencies. In such cases, the Canadian can be very 
malignant and treacherous. In one instance, Boilau, a 

30 Letter from Canada. 

Captain of Militia in Chambly and an ardent royal 
ist, was waylaid a number of times by his nephew, 
who was a rebel, in order that he might scalp his 
uncle ! Again, Brigadier-General Gordon was treach- 
ously shot while in his caliche near his camp in the 
woods at Chambly. 

No other nation can endure fatigue, labor, and hard 
ship with greater fortitude. To suffer the pangs of 
hunger for several days without complaining is noth 
ing new to them. Not a few of these people are at 
present serving in the army, although to do so they 
often have to drive from 100 to 200 leagues in their 
carts (charettes). C est pour le service du roi is all 
that is required to be said in order to induce the 
Canadian cheerfully to undertake the work he has 
been ordered to do. They cannot endure rough treat 
ment, such as knocks and blows ; and no one will 
more bitterly complain of that kind of usage than 
they. This sensitiveness is no doubt caused by their 
finer feelings. They will tell you that zpaiwre Cana- 
dien (poor Canadian) also has his feelings, and will 
make you the judge of their troubles and sufferings. 
To sum up, they wish to be treated in a courteous 
manner. Should you wish them to do anything for 
you, your request must be prefaced with kind words, 
otherwise they will either feel insulted or act treacher 
ously. In fine, no other nation is more obliging than 
theirs if treated kindly. On the other hand, it will 
not do to be too kind and polite. In making your 
requests, you must combine a certain amount of firm- 

Letter from Canada. 31 

ness with your civility, that they may understand that 
you will submit to no remonstrance. None are better 
aware of this than the Captains of Militia, who find it 
necessary to maintain a more or less enforced obedi 
ence and to nip in the bud the first signs of disobedi 

In their housekeeping they are very orderly and 
exact ; nor can any other nation live so economically. 
During the summer the Canadian lives on bread as 
white as snow, milk, vegetables, and flour. He saves 
his cattle and poultry for the winter ; and then he is 
said to live in grand style ! Their thrift can be seen 
in their furniture and other household articles (dating 
from the time of Louis XIV.), all of which afford 
ample evidence of having passed down through many 
hands. Regarding money matters they are exceed 
ingly close, and well they may be ; for you will seldom 
meet with a family having less than eight or ten chil 
dren. Even when they have no need of money, you 
will not find them giving any of it away. Neither 
need you feel ashamed courteously to offer a lady with 
whom you may stand on a friendly footing, a few sous 
for the milk she may have given you with your coffee, 
for she will receive it as politely as you offer it. On 
the other hand, it will warm your heart to observe 
how hospitable they are among each other. A Ca 
nadian can go on a journey of a hundred miles, and 
without much trouble find quarters for himself and 
horse at whatever house he may chance to stop. He 
will enter, eat, drink, sleep, and gossip with his host 

32 Letter from Canada. 

as unconcernedly as if he were at home ; and notwith 
standing this you will meet with no "sponges." As 
to beggars, they are unknown in Canada. The habi- 
tans regard each other as blood-relations ; and one 
Parish will assume, if necessary, the burdens (i.e. taxes) 
of another Parish, instead of trying to shift them upon 
the other as with us at home. The Canadians are not 
at all suspicious. Their barns are left unlocked ; their 
cattle roam about the yard ; and most of their things 
are not even put under lock and key. They will not 
touch anything that does not belong to them. You 
may safely give several guineas to the first Canadian 
you chance to meet to have them changed, for he will 
invariably return with the correct amount. Again, he 
will gladly loan you his furniture, besides lending you 
a helping hand whenever in his power, without 
manifesting any signs that he would like to be paid 
for the same. By paying him he will become the most 
faithful and discreet of messengers, and can be sent 
almost through the length and breadthof Canada. 

The Canadians are also very cleanly. They love 
tobacco, though I cannot understand how they can 
smoke the strongest and most disgusting tobacco in 
short pipes and to such excess. The ladies (every 
woman in this country is styled Madame) love snuff ; 
and no Canadian will reject a glass of rum. Still, 
I have seen very few heavy drinkers or habitual 

Fashion is under a ban in Canada. Nearly every 
stitch the habitant wears upon his back is made by 

Letter from Canada. 33 

himself. He makes his own souliers des sauvages 
[moccasins]; and he also manufactures a kind of shoe 
from dressed leather, made without heels and straps, 
and which, when new, does not look so very badly. 
In the winter we will have to try this shoe ; for they 
tell us that our feet will freeze in our ordinary boots. 
Thickly knitted brown stockings are tied under the 
knee by a red woollen band. His breeches are either 
made of rough cloth, or from the hides of wild cattle 
tanned by himself. His shirts are tied in front, and 
made out of dotted home-spun goods similar to those 
worn by our peasants at home. His clothes are fas 
tened about his hips by means of a thick woollen scarf, 
with tassels dangling at the ends. These scarfs are of 
all colors, according to the wearer s taste. A woollen 
hood (a Capuchin hood) is attached to the back of 
his coat, which he draws over his head in rough and 
wet weather. Hats are seldom worn ; thick red col 
ored bonnets, lined inside with white, being most 
generally affected by the Canadians. The Canadian 
dandy wears a jacket made of some kind of white 
frieze, ornamented in front by red-and-blue ribbons 
and several rosettes of the same material. This dress 
or jacket, which is fringed, is the national costume, 
and feels very comfortable and warm. Governor 
Carleton, when forced to travel among the Canadians 
in winter on government business, himself wears one 
of these jackets. In summer the habitans wear 
jackets of silesia, calico, or linen, with ribbons flutter 
ing behind. Should one judge the Canadians by their 

34 Letter from Canada. 

clothes, he is liable to make serious mistakes ; as he 
will often find a rich or prominent man wearing a 
miserable coat. People living in the cities, and well- 
to-do habitant, such as notaries, merchants, and the 
like, dress in the English or French fashion, but with 
out wearing gold or silver jewelry. Artistic hair- 
dressing is unknown. The habitant ties his queue 
with a white ribbon. The ladies dress in the same 
style as their sex on the other side, and, whether rich 
or poor, put up their hair in a chignon, and also wear 
hoods fastened under the chin with colored silk rib 
bons. As yet, I have seen no lady with her hair 
curled. The rich wear in winter a cloth mantel 
(trimmed, perhaps, with fur), and in summer one 
made of light material, the capes attached to them 
being pulled over the head. 

Every habitant has his horse, caliche, and sleigh. 
What he calls a caliche [calash] is the same as our 
carioles at home, with this difference : the wagon-box 
is capable of holding two persons, and the axle is 
longer. The driver sits in front upon a board seat, 
with both feet resting on the shafts. The entire 
caliche is made of pine, and I do not believe that you 
will find three groschens worth of iron on it. The 
outer part of the wheels is without a tire, but the 
inner parts have iron casings. The axle to which 
they are attached is composed of plain wood, and the 
shafts are of thin wood. The body is also of wood, 
and is suspended from home-made leather straps or 
ropes. Some of the roads are so bad that one runs 

Letter from Canada. 35 

the risk of breaking his neck ; but it seldom happens 
that the caliche is broken, as the pine in this country 
is extraordinarily tough and hard. Canadian horses 
are well though lightly built, and, though of medium 
size, are strong. With a pair of large, round bells 
jingling about their necks, they can trot six leagues at 
a stretch over hills and mountains, through thick and 
thin. One of these horses can cover from twelve to 
fifteen leagues a day without eating ; and, after un 
hitching your horse at your journey s end, he is let 
loose in a paddock, where he eats his fill of grass. It 
is only in winter, and but seldom in summer, that 
horses are fed on oats. They are not shod in sum 
mer but only in winter, when they are driven before 
a sleigh, which, by the way, is so light, as to almost go 
by itself. At any rate, you can make from two to 
two and a half German miles in such a vehicle in an 
hour. Caroches, chaises, etc., in fact all four-wheeled 
wagons, are unknown in Canada. Rich people have 
tops to their caleches, and sometimes have a team har 
nessed to them. All carts have two wheels ; are also 
lightly built, and are used by the habitant to carry his 
grain and hay. The driver guides his horse by speak 
ing to, and not by whipping, him talking to him 
meanwhile, during the entire trip, as if he were a 
human being. The following are some of the expres 
sions to be heard on the road : ^va doux, paresseux 
[lazy beast], " prenez, garde a vous, doucement" etc.* 

* Mrs. General Riedesel gives an amusing account of her 
travels behind a calcche on her way to Three Rivers to join 

36 Letter from Canada. 

The Canadians are expert boatmen. Every habitant 
is a hunter and a fisherman ; both of which vocations 
are within the reach of every one. There are but few 
ponds. An ox-horn is his powder-horn. Wild duck, 
snipe, and wild pigeons are plentiful ; while bears, 
rabbits, muskrats and beavers can be shot in the win 
ter. However, as I am not as yet an expert in hunt 
ing, I will have to leave further details of this sport 
until some future time. 

While the fine arts are unknown to the Canadians, 
it is not from lack of ability to learn. They know of 
nothing except what is going on within their own im 
mediate circle. Regarding religion they are very de 
vout, but ignorant. I have not found them intolerant 
in regard to their religious views ; at any rate, they do 
not as yet look upon me as a heretic. Their cure s are 
mostly good and sociably disposed men with agree 
able manners some of them indeed, possessing con 
siderable knowledge. Their churches do not contain 

her husband. "The Canadians," she writes, "are everlast 
ingly talking to their horses, and giving them all kinds of 
names. Thus, when they were not either lashing their 
horses or singing, they cried, Allans, mon prince ! Pour 
man general. Oftener, however, they said, l Fi t done, 
madame ! I thought that this last was designed for me, 
and asked, * Plait-ilf Oh, replied the driver, l ee nest que 
mon cheval, la petite coquineJ (It is only the little jade, my 
horse.)" A very good picture of a caleclie, with the driver 
seated on the fills, and driving merrily along, may be seen in 
"Weld s Travels in America, 1796-7." 

Letter from Canada. 37 

many sacred paintings, a fact, perhaps, which may be 
accounted for on the score of expense. No convents 
are to be found in the country.* But few people are 
able to write, and the orthography of the rich who can 
write may be compared with that of our common 
classes at home. I have read letters written by Cap 
tain of Militia, Tournencour a prominent banker 
and one of the wealthiest men in Canada which 
would require a key in order to understand them. 
They write as they speak, and contract several words 
into one. 

All Canadians, no matter how they may try to dis 
guise it, still have a leaning towards French rule. The 
English Government is on guard however, and Gen 
eral Carleto.n s chief strength lies in the fact of his being 
able to ferret out all attempts in that direction with 
out its being known from what sources he receives his 

Canada exports yearly 1000 lasts [2000 tons] of 
wheat. She has, moreover, considerable trade in 
horses with other English colonies ; and the many 
thousand head of cattle we have already devoured are 
but such a small proportion of those still remaining in 
Canada that we live in hopes of whetting our teeth 
on the flesh of many thousands more ! 

* All the convents had either been burned down or con 
verted into barracks before this writer came to Canada. See 
letters farther on. Gen. Riedesel, however, speaks of a 
pleasant nunnery at Three Rivers, called the Convent of 



TIIK YEAR 1776.* 

HATJSOAMI , Nov. 3, 1776. 

On the 24! h of September, I left my ship to pro 
ceed to Quebec, where, on the following day, I had the 
opportunity of witnessing the burial of a Freemason. 
Two Masons, bearing standards draped in mourning, 
led the procession ; these, in turn, were followed by 
the entire lodge marching in pairs according to their 
rank in that body ; all being attired in full regalia, with 
fine white leather aprons extending down to their 

* This is a complete daily journal having reference to the 
march of the Hrunswickcrs from Sept. 2410 Nov. 3, 1776, 
by the author of " Private Letters from Canada," interspeised 
with numerous petty but characteristic details, and contain 
ing, particularly, an accurate topography of the entire re 
gion in Canada between Quebec and Lake Champlain. The 
latter feature will be the more welcome to our readers, since, 
as the author himself states in another part of his letters, 
complete land-charts of Canada are very scarce. Note by 

J^irst Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 39 

knees, and a mason s trowel at the side. The /reres 
terribles walked to the grave with drawn swords. All 
the Masons were clothed in black ; and in place of 
mourning cloaks, they wore a fine white sash about 
two hands in width, extending from the right shoulder 
down to the left side, in the same manner in which the 
Hanoverians wear their scarfs. In place of crape, 
they had a folded white cloth, a yard and a half long, 
hanging down from the right side of their hats. Fol 
lowing the body came two English preachers attired 
also in mourning habits, they, in turn, being followed 
by a detachment of one officer, four under-officers, and 
three hundred men of the English militia of Quebec. 
These last carried arms the deceased having been a 
militia officer. Upon the coffin, which was borne by 
the lay-brothers, were placed the dead man s sword 
and his masonic regalia. Immediately after the coffin 
came, in ordinary civilian s dress, the militia company 
to which the deceased had belonged. A more im 
pressive silence and a more quiet funeral I have never 

To-day the battalion of Banner disembarked at 
Quebec, and immediately began their march to join 
the main army. 

On the 26th, half of Specht s regiment also disem 
barked and followed them. We marched through the 
city of Quebec, passing out through the gate. Here 
we saw, lying in mournful ruins, the suburb St. John, 
which had been burned the previous year by the 
rebels in their attack upon the town. We passed 

40 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

some very handsome country-seats belonging to 
wealthy citizens of that city, several of which had been 
laid in ashes by the rebels through hatred of their 
owners. We had a good road, and rested our weary 
bones in the Parish of St. Foye, two and a half leagues 
from Quebec a league is nearly an hour and a halfs 
walk or five eighths of a German mile. Who would 
not be tired in making even a short march, after being 
confined for thirteen weeks on shipboard ? This 
parish lies on the northern bank of the St. Lawrence 
River, and contains very good houses, built of stone 
and surrounded by excellent fields, meadows, com 
mons and gardens. 

On the 27th, Rhetz s regiment disembarked and 
started on a similar march. Meanwhile, we proceeded 
on ours, and, soon after leaving St. Foye, encountered 
such villainous defiles between rocky hills that when 
we first caught sight of them our thoughts at once 
reverted to the Hartz Mountains.* An unusually 
steep road led us up and down hills between masses 
of rock, which, however, were only of moderate height. 
The river, which, at Cape Rouge, empties into the St. 
Lawrence, was crossed by us on a ferry. Again, we 
were obliged to pass over a steep and rocky road lead 
ing through woods and underbrush until we once 

* From the outskirts of Brunswick, on a clear day, the 
Hartz Mountains can easily be seen. In my walks in the 
vicinity of that town I have often looked upon them. No 
wonder then that the thoughts of this Brunswick officer re 
verted to that familiar landscape near his home! 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 41 

more came within a short distance of the St. Lawrence, 
which, of course, lay on our left. On the right, a 
mountain covered with boulders and an impenetrable 
forest towered aloft like a wall, having at its base a 
large number of immense pebble stones [boulders] 
which had rolled far into the river. Some of these 
stones were from 6 to 8 yards in diameter. Whether 
they had rolled down from the mountain, set free by 
the rains of many years, or were originally in the river 
bed, I cannot say. At length, we arrived at the 
parish of St. Augustin. While the houses are scat 
tered among the mountains, the beautiful fields 
and meadows which belong to them extend along the 
river-bank. This parish is a large one ; and here we 
saw, for the first time, genuine wooden buildings. We 
continued ^our march until we reached the parish of 
Pointe aux Trembles, where we took up our quarters, 
having covered a distance of 7 leagues. This parish is 
more than one and a half German leagues in length, 
and, as a general thing, has good stone houses situated 
at distances of from three to four hundred paces apart* 
To-day we received gratifying news of the safe arrival 
of the ship " Wiesland " at Isle le Bic in the St. Law 
rence, having on board nearly three companies of 
Specht s regiment. 

28th : We resumed our march along the banks of 
the St. Lawrence, and passed through the parish 

* A " pace," when used by a military man, means about 
two and one half feet. 

42 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

Larreaux, its church being built close to the river. 
In order to cross the Jaques Cartier River a name 
derived from the first settler* in the neighborhood 
we were obliged to seat ourselves in large boats, having 
first unpacked our baggage. On the other side of the 
river we found other conveyances. We had, how 
ever, to climb several steep and rocky elevations ; and 
having accomplished this feat, we took up our quarters 
in the beautiful parish of Cap Sante, four leagues in 
length, and the dwellings of which lie 800 paces apart. 
The church here is the newest and handsomest in all 
Canada, and its style of architecture is unequalled. 
Its three small doors are covered with white lead. The 
house of the cure is modern as well as large. 

29th : We continued our march, and on reaching 
the extremity of this Parish (Cap Sant/) we met 
with two large English guard-ships at anchor in the 
St. Lawrence. Notwithstanding a wretchedly cold 
rain, we found the roads to be level and in good con 
dition. After covering three leagues we took up our 
quarters in the Parish of Chambeant on the St. Law 
rence the Parish r Aubiegnitre being in view on the 
opposite bank. 

On the 3Oth, we took a day of rest, that we might 
get in a stock of flour so as to be able to bake. 

Oct. ist, we crossed the small river Maquiere, or, 
rather, our conveyances forded it, which was easily 
done at ebb tide. The soldiers, however, had to be 

* The discoverer of the Saint Lawrence, 1534. 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 43 

ferried over. We continued our march through the 
Parish of les Grondines, which lies at quite a distance 
from the St. Lawrence, and where the breeding of 
cattle is far ahead of an otherwise not remarkable ag 
ricultural people. After proceeding five leagues, we 
rested in the very large and beautiful Parish of St. 
Anne, which has an extremely well built and rich 
seigneurie. Here we saw large quantities of hazel- 
hens, wild ducks, partridges and rabbits. In this Par 
ish, I met several German habitans* who had for 
merly come into this Province with the French 

On the 2d, we crossed the river St. Anne in ba 
teaux near the church, at which point we were strongly 
reminded of the Weser. On the opposite side, we were 
met by caleches and carts the Parish of St. Anne 
extending also on this bank of the river. We 
marched through numerous woods and underbrush ; 
and in the latter, we continually came upon flocks of 
one hundred and more black thrushes. In this under 
brush, also, we met with many cotton-shrubs bearing 
ripe fruit, f These peculiar shrubs invariably grow 

* A name applied to the inhabitants of Lower Canada who 
are of French descent. 

f " The plant here referred to is the Cat-tail or Cotton-rush, 
Typha latifolia. The heads of ripe seed do grow, as de 
scribed, singly ; and the down is still largely used by the in 
habitants of Lower Canada for stuffing beds and pillows." 
Letter from Prof. James Fletcher, Botanist of the Experi 
mental Farm, Ottawa, Canada. Jan. 9, 1891. Some of the 
New Jersey farmers also use Cat-tails for the same purpose. 

44 First Brunsiuick Campaign in Canada. 

singly ; and the habitans stuff their beds with its cot 
ton, for which purpose it cannot be equalled. Finally 
we arrived at the Parish Batiscan, where I now live. 

This parish is none of the best ; and though it ex 
tends, laterally, to a distance of five leagues, the houses 
lying within it are, as a general rule, most wretched. 
On the opposite side of the river is the Parish of St. 
Ricom. The St. Lawrence, which is a good 200 
paces from my quarters, is here fully one half a Ger 
man mile wide ; and so deep that three-masted ships 
can easily float upon it. The river Batiscan flows 
through the middle of the Parish, and you can 
easily cross it on thick planks, or, if you prefer, with 
canoes. It is a trifle wider than the St. Anne River. 
This very day we drove through the Parish Champlin, 
where Mr. Blanc, a Captain de Milice [militia] and a 
native of Geneva, became my good friend. We had 
marched only four leagues, having been greatly hin 
dered by rivers. The largest of our English war- frig 
ates, "The Bride," lay at anchor at Champlin. She 
carries thirty-six guns. The Parish of Chantilly lies 
on the opposite side of the river. 

On the 3d, we marched through the Parish of St. 
Madelone [Magdalene], which is opposite the Parish 
of Rosencour. We were forced to cross numerous 
creeks ; and, as a consequence, also many bridges. A 
Canadian bridge is a queer thing. It consists entirely 
of a number of beams or round tree-trunks placed side 
by side. Should one of these beams or trunks break, 
it does not matter, as the others retain their positions. 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 45 

These bridges, however, must be dangerous to cross 
at night, especially for horses ; in fact, some of our 
horses broke their legs as it was. We passed a large 
wood composed chiefly of pine, fir, ash, birch, alder, 
wild apple and oak trees which grew amid tangled 
underbrush and countless wild shrubs. Here, we 
also fell in with the wigwams of numerous Indians, 
who, however, were hogs compared with other savages 
whom we had met they lived in such a beastly man 
ner. Pursuing our journey five and a half leagues fur 
ther, we came to the river St. Francis, also known as 
Three Rivers or Trots Riviere, from the fact that 
the river St. Maurice here divides and enters the St. 
Lawrence by three channels. This river is wider than 
the Saale. Again, we gentlemen had to step into 
shallops and allow ourselves to be ferried over. An 
Indian, for two shillings, did me the honor of carrying 
me across the river like the wind in his birch-bark 
canoe. After crossing, we still had to march a good 
league before arriving at the town of Three Rivers, 
where we dried our clothes, it having rained the entire 

Three Rivers, although the oldest French colonial 
town in Canada, is small and. straggling. It contains 
scarcely three hundred houses, most of which are of 
wood and but one story high. Still, many merchants 
occupy them as residences. M. de Tonneucourt 
[Tonnancour], the CcJonel of Militia in this place, is 
one of the wealthiest persons in all Canada. He is a 
large contractor, merchant, corn- and cattle-dealer, and 

46 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

a Jew. Nothing in the way of trade comes amiss to 
him. He will sell you half an ounce of pepper, or re 
tail you a glass of brandy in his house ; while, at the 
same time, he supplies the larger part of Canada with 
wine at wholesale. Sometimes he lives on a magnifi 
cent, and at others on a small, scale ; has numerous 
outlying country-houses ; likes to loan money on 
houses and farms ; and, in short, is universally known 
as the " Pope of Canada." The Convent of the Re- 
collets has been abolished ; the former Government- 
House turned into a barrack for 300 men ; and the 
Ursuline Convent converted into a hospital for our 
troops. The chief resident Cure bears the title of 
Grand Vicar. Many pretty and lively girls are met 
with in this town who dress themselves very neatly. 
Quite a number of Seigneurs have here their winter 
residences. A 2o-gun frigate lay anchored on the St. 
Lawrence, which flows close by the city. An ex 
tremely important magazine is also located here ; and 
occasionally you will meet with exceedingly nice 
houses furnished very respectably. 

On the 4th, we marched over very dirty, muddy and 
swampy roads filled with pitfalls, passing through the 
Parish of Pointe au Lac* a wretchedly poor place. 
At this point, the St. Lawrence widens out into a 
large lake, called Lac de St. Pierre, which is three 

* Pointe .du Lac : also called Tonnancour probably 
named after the merchant of the same name, mentioned a 
Page or two back. 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 47 

leagues in width. We passed the little Muschiche 
River,* and after making six leagues, remained over 
night in the Parish of Machitiche. Upon the other 
side of Lac St. Pierre lies the Parish of St. Antoine 
or Lefevre on a bay of the same name, between which 
and the lake stretches a long neck of land called 
Longue Pointe. 

On the 5th, we passed, on our march, the large 
Parish au Loup and the river of the same name. We 
crossed also, the Maskinonge River in boats, marched 
six leagues further, and slept that night in the Parish 
of Maskinonge,^ which meets with my approval. 

The 6th was a day of rest. 

On the 7th, we had a passable road, through a long 
straggling wood about three leagues in length ; 
though frequently we were up to our knees in mud 
and water. We crossed the river Chicot, as well as 
the little river Baste", on a float [raft ?]. We had now 
marched four and a half leagues, and accordingly 
rested for the night in the excellent Parish of Bar ties. 
The seigneur living here an Englishman named 
Colbert has a fine castle fitted up in the best of taste. 
He has laid out a new Parish three leagues in length, 
extending laterally from Earlier, and named it York. 
On my return, I passed through it, and have seen 

* The Mascouche River in Lower Canada, which falls into 
the river St. John about twelve miles before the latter joins 
the St. Lewrence. 

f So named after the fish Mascalinga, or Muscalonge as 
Pike Co., in Pennsylvania, is called after that fish. 

48 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

a new Parish in its infancy ; and anything more 
wretched and forlorn cannot be imagined. At Bar- 
tier, Lac St. Pierre forms various islands, the one 
nearest Barlier and uninhabited being called Isle au 
Ciistus. It is four leagues in length by nearly the same 
in width. In the rear of this lies the far larger and 
inhabited Isle dii Pas. 

On Oct. 8th, twenty-two bateaux were sent to us 
from Sorel to convey Specht s regiment and baggage 
across [up] the St. Lawrence to that village. They 
were all royal bateaux, of which the army has over 
one thousand. Such a bateau, or large boat, can carry 
from seven to eight thousand pounds in weight and 
twenty-eight or thirty people. Our soldiers, who have 
learned the art perfectly since they have been in Can 
ada, were obliged to row English soldiers, thoroughly 
understanding navigation, holding the steering-oars. 
We rowed three and a half leagues before arriving at 
Sorel, which is situated on the south bank of the St. 
Lawrence. At this place, the large and important 
Sorel or, as it is really called, the river Richelieu* 
flows into it from Lake Champlain in two branches, 
one on each side of the village. We landed at Sorel, 
where we found an English detachment of one hun 
dred and thirty men, and also a very large magazine 
ftom which we replenished our stock. At the mouth 
of the Sorel were about forty two- and three-masted 
English transport-ships whose crews had recently 

* Now the St. John s River. 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 49 

formed part of our army at Lake Champlain. An 
English frigate was also on guard here. As the rough 
weather and the passage across [up] the river had 
greatly detained us, and as, moreover, the roads be 
yond Sorel, which led through.thick woods, were ex 
ecrable, we were obliged, after 8 o clock in the morn 
ing, to leave several companies behind us. The rest 
of the troops, however, managed to reach the Parish 
of St. Thomas, where we again met with two English 
frigates on guard in the Sorel River. Many of the 
inhabitants of these Parishes are in the service of the 
rebels : among them, a habitant, named Nugent, who, 
only eight years ago, was a hair-dresser in Montreal, 
but is now the high and mighty colonel of a regiment 
of Bostonians ! The distance between Sorel and St. 
Thomas is three leagues. 

On the 9th we crossed numerous creeks over which 
dangerous log-bridges, similar to those I have previ 
ously described, were placed. These bridges were 
thrown across the streams so low that one was obliged 
first to go down a steep descent about the height of 
two houses, and then ascend the embankment on the 
opposite side. At nearly every 200 paces we would 
encounter such a bridge. This condition of things 
was caused by the water having carried away the earth 
on each side. We covered to-day but three leagues 
in fact, we advanced only as far as the large and beauti 
ful Parish of St. Denis. Here were stationed, for 
the protection of the transports, a Hesse-Hanau and 
Brunswick detachment of 84 men. On the other 

50 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

side of the Sorel was the Parish of St. Antoine. The 
inhabitants of this Parish looked as if they were re- 
belliously inclined. 

On the loth we passed through the Parish of St. 
Charles. At this place we crossed the Sorel in a ferry 
boat that seemed frail enough to drown us, and took 
up our quarters in the Parish of Bel Veulle \_B elczil ?~\, 
which is over 3 leagues in length. Five leagues further, 
and opposite, is the Parish of St. Loiiis. Von Earner s 
battalion were to-day quartered in the Parish of St. 

On the nth, while on our march, we saw the Isle 
au Cerf in the Sorel. To-day, we only advanced as far 
as the Parish of Chambly, \\ leagues distant, where 
were stationed, for the protection of an important 
magazine and a train containing a large quantity of 
ammunition, an English colonel with a detachment. 
Upon the river were anchored two English sloops-of- 
war carrying eight to ten guns. 

Fort Chambly, lying on the Sorel, has had its interior 
burned out by the rebels. The fort is square and built 
entirely of masonry. It is now undergoing repairs ; and 
barracks, for from two to three hundred men, are con 
structing inside of the walls. Beyond Chambly we 
cannot go with bateaux on account of rapids which 
extend from this place to a distance of three leagues. 
The river here is wide but not deep ; and on its bottom 
can be seen innumerable large stones over which the 
water dashes itself into foam. The bateaux and small 
vessels are therefore unloaded at this point, and their 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 5 1 

cargoes, consisting of all the army supplies, carried in 
charettes [carts] a distance of three leagues before they 
can be reloaded into the boats. All the vessels that 
were used by our army on Lake Champlain were trans 
ported on land piece by piece from Chambly to a dis 
tance of 3 leagues, when they were again put together. 
Major-General Riedesel was stationed, with two regi 
ments, upon Isle aux Noix. This island lies in the 
Sorel near where that river opens into Lake Champlain. 
At Chambly the Parishes cease. 

On our arrival at Chambly we found that the main 
army [under Carleton] had already embarked and 
started for lake Champlain, partly in ships and partly 
in bateaux. First of all, however, I must describe 
that Lake, although, as yet, I have not seen it myself. 
Above Chambly and on the Sorel lies Fort St. John. 
Here Earner s battalion \vas to-day encamped, except 
ing the Ja gers [Rifle-men], who had gone forward 
with the main army. Above* St. John, and the again 
navigable Sorel, lies the Isle aiix Noix. On this island, 
which is uninhabited, General Riedesel lay encamped. 
A little way further, and you reach the large Cham- 
plain Sea, across the middle of which runs the bound- 

* This word " above" proves, among other things, that the 
writer was a careful observer, and had taken pains to acquaint 
himself accurately with the topography of the country. 
Hadden (who, if he had been writing, would have written 
below) and most all writers at this time invariably speak as 
if the St. John River, and Lake Champlain ran south, like 
the Hudson. 

52 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

ary line between Canada and New York. Then, again, 
upon the right, or western bank of the lake, is a well- 
known cape, called, Pointe aux Terres, where Gen 
eral Carleton lay encamped with the corps d armde. 
Moreover, in the lake itself are to be found the Isle 
aux deux Tetes, Pointe aux Pommes, Isle laMotte, and 
Isle la Grande, etc. During the day the regiments 
were obliged to row ; and towards night they landed, 
and, building fires in the woods, cooked their evening 
meal. Our naval force upon the lake consists of 
the ship " Carleton," 1 2 guns; " Lady Marie," 14 guns; 
" L Inflexible," 30 guns; and the "Radeau,"* carry 
ing 6 guns, and also having upon deck 8 or 10 
small cannon. The "Armide," and " Baleine," were 
24-gun ships having i2-pounders at the fore, and, 
when brought end to end, served as a battery. 

On the 1 2th, Specht s regiment had a day of rest, 
and united once more with that of Rhetz s. 

On the 1 3th, both regiments occupied a camp in 
common at Chambly, but kept themselves in constant 
readiness to march to the advanced portion of the 
army. However, on the i5th, we heard that General 
Carleton had surprised, attacked, and defeated the 

* u The Radeau was an unique structure which is often 
mentioned in the naval annals of the northern lakes. It was 
scarcely more than a raft or floating battery, but constructed 
with great solidity and strength. It was protected only by 
low and slight bulwarks, but, armed with the heaviest ord 
nance, it was a powerful and effective craft." General Ho 
ratio Rogers, in " Hadderi s Journal" 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 53 

enemy s fleet between Isle au Chapon and the main 
land, and had driven the remainder of the fleet into 
Cumberland Bay. 

On the i ;th, we further learned that the enemy s 
fleet was entirely ruined, it having been burnt, and, in 
part, sunk by boring holes in the vessels. Most of 
the rebels saved themselves, however, by taking to 
their bateaux. We have bored holes into or burned 
the following vessels, viz. : the " Royal Savage," carry 
ing eight 6-pounders and four 4-pounders, and which 
was commanded by the notorious General Arnold * 
a former horse-dealer, but who saved himself after first, 
with his own hands, setting fire to his vessel ; the 
" Revenge," carrying two 4-pounders and six 3-pound- 
ers ; the " Enterprise," with ten 4-pounders; " Le 
Cutter," with one i2-pounder and four 6-pounders; 
the "Tremble," with one i8-pounder, one i2-pounder, 
and six 6-pounders; the "Washington," carrying one 
i4-pounder, one i2-pounder, two g-pounders, and six 
6-pounders ; the " Congress," of the same armament 
as the "Washington;" the "Philadelphia," with one 
i2-pounder, two Q-pounders ; the "New York," car 
rying the same number of guns as the "Philadelphia ;" 
and the "Jersey," "Providence," "New Haven," 

* The Germans seem to have had a poor opinion of 
Arnold one of the bravest and best generals the Conti 
nental army ever had, and to whom is really due the entire 
credit of the victory of both battles of Saratoga. Thus, in 
a " List of American Generals for 1778 " in Schlozer, Arnold 
is described as an "apothecary, a bankrupt, and a swindler." 

54 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

" Spitfire," and " Boston," also of the same comple 
ment of "guns. Two vessels, that were sent to Ticon- 
deroga, got off in safety. Thereupon General Carleton 
advanced as far as Crown Point, just as the rebels 
had evacuated it, after having first set it on fire. 
We learn, however, that the flames were extinguished 
by our army before they had gained much headway. 
Meanwhile, the rebels have withdrawn to a fortified 
camp at Fort Carillon [Ticonderoga], which very 
likely will become the seat of war next spring. None 
of our corps were engaged in the naval battle. 

On October 2Oth and 2ist, the army began their 
march into winter quarters. We hold the key to 
Canada, because we are now masters of Lake 
Champlain. Three thousand men are to remain at 
Crown Point, under the command of Brigadier 
Fraser. This force is made up of Indians, Canadians, 
grenadiers, and the riflemen (Jagers) of the Eleventh 
Regiment. Upon Pointe aux Fer and the Isle aiix 
Noix Earner s battalion is to be stationed. Our 
grenadiers will be placed in the Parish St. Antoine 
and St. Denis ; the Hesse-Hanaus in Barties and 
Masquinonge. The regiment, of Prince Frederick 
will leave Quebec and go to Marchishe [Mackise~\ 
and Point au Loup. Both of these regiments that is, 
those of Hesse-Hanau and Prince Frederick are un 
der the command of Brigadier-General Gall. The 
dragoons and Von Riedesel s regiment will go into 
winter quarters at Three Rivers, Pointe au Lac and 
Cap de Madelane. Specht s regiment goes to Cham- 

First Brimswick Campaign in Canada. 55 

bly and Batiscamp, and Rhetz s to St. Anne and Les 
Grondines, both being under the command of Briga 
dier-General Specht. Two English regiments are 
to proceed to Quebec, which is to be the headquar 
ters of General Carleton. General von Riedesel will 
take up his quarters at Three Rivers. Regarding the 
disposition of the English regiments, I do not, as yet, 
know; but this is certain, that the question of winter 
quarters for all has not yet been fully decided and is 
still under consideration. This much, however, I do 
know 7 , viz. : that the parishes on the other side of the 
St. Lawrence are to be garrisoned. At present, from 
six to twelve men are quartered in a house, which is 
too much in Canada. 

We are returning from Chambly to Batiscamp by 
the same route that we came. 

Our army now consists of twelve English regi 
ments, the names of which, excepting those of Gen 
eral Carleton and my Lord Cavendish, I am unable 
to name. I know, however, that a part of the army 
is made up of one regiment of dragoons, one battalion 
of grenadiers, and four regiments of Brunswickers. 
In addition to these, there are nearly 2000 Canadians 
serving as volunteers, besides 800 to 1000 Indians 
under the command of Captain Carleton (a nephew 
of General Carleton), who paints his face, wears a ring 
in his nose, and dresses like a savage. His wife is a 
"My Lady" and a sister to the wife of General Carle- 
ton. Both ladies have but recently arrived from 

56 First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 

Europe. Lady von Riedesel, however, has not yet 

About four days since, we heard for the first time of 
General Howe s fortunate battle on the 27th of August 
last. And would it be believed ! We received this 
piece of news by way of Quebec ; for by way of the 
South you can hear nothing of what is going on in 
the other Colonies. A communication with Carillon 
once opened up, it will be easy to correspond, by way 
of Albany, with New York, New England and Vir 
ginia. The battle occurred on Long Island. The 
English and Hessians stormed the enemy s entrench 
ments, scaled and carried them. Those captured are 
3 generals (among them Lord Stirling), 4 colonels, 
1 8 captains, 42 lieutenants, 11 ensigns, i aide major, 
30 sergeants, and 1800 soldiers. Between 3000 and 
4000 rebels are killed or wounded. On our side, we 
lost in killed and wounded i colonel, 3 captains, 12 
officers, and not much over 500 men. The enemy 
left behind them their camp and artillery. General 
Howe immediately occupied the city of New York, 
and indeed rescued it from destruction ; for the rebels 
intended to set it on fire, and would have done so, had 
they not had a hospital containing several thousand 
men, whom it was impossible to remove readily. 
More accurate details are awaited with anxiety. Lieu- 
tenant-General Burgoyne will shortly sail for England 
to pass the winter. My correspondence will now be 
closed for at least four months, because the St. Law 
rence begins to freeze up at the end of November, 

First Brunswick Campaign in Canada. 57 

and consequently no letters can leave Quebec. Re 
garding our officers : we have lost by death, Lieuten 
ant Katte and Ensign Unverzagt ; this is all. The 
health of our regiments is good. That of Specht s up 
to date has lost i drummer and 8 men all of whom 
were Brunswickers. It will astonish me, if the winter 
in Canada is as severe as they say it is. 



SAXONY AUG. ist, 1777. 


Your letter, dated Sept. 3, arrived on Dec i3th, 
1 776, and was received by me with great pleasure. Up 
to the present time, but few have had the good luck 
to receive letters from the Old World, and, doubtless, 
many are even now lying in various places. It is 
known to a certainty that the English Lieutenant- 
Colonel MacLean, who is also Adjutant-General of the 
army, has in his possession a large number of letters 
brought with him from England ; but where he and 
his vessel is, is still a matter of conjecture. It may 
be that, not daring to venture up the St. Lawrence 
River, he has put into Halifax for the winter ; and 
should such be the case, we may soon expect to re 
ceive letters from home. For the European news you 
have given me I am deeply indebted to you. The 

: This letter, apparently, was written to the writer s 
mother and brother conjointly. 


Letter from Canada. 59 

different items are veritable tidbits, which we may 
look for in vain, especially in the winter-time, in the 
Quebec newspapers, though, in other respects, % they 
contain quite valuable pieces of Canadian news. 

You had the kindness to manifest great interest at 
our supposed lack of the necessaries of life. For the 
consolation of our friends at home, however, I am 
forced to state that the account given thereof was not 
true ; neither was it intended for a true statement of 
affairs. Up to the present, we have had abundance 
of very good beef, pork and mutton ; and since the 
2Oth of February there has been no want of chickens, 
capons, geese, ducks, partridges and rabbits. There 
was, also, no lack of white cabbages, turnips, beets 
and excellent peas and beans, though it is true that 
we could get no cauliflower, lentils and other varieties 
of turnips. We also had to forego the pleasure of 
eating the venison of the deer, roe and wild-boar ; but 
your cook will tell you that many varieties of dishes 
may be made with the different articles I have already 
enumerated. Furthermore, let me assure you that 
every now and then we have excellent fish ; and that 
fine pastry can be made with flour and good butter. 
Roasted young bear-meat, beaver-tails, and caribou 
also taste well ; and when placed upon the table not 
only give it an epicurean appearance, but would be 
apt to convince you that the eye and palate can be ap 
peased in Canada, as well as elsewhere. My beloved 
countrymen of Lower Saxony, however, can always 
flatter themselves that they alone possess the art of 

60 Letter from Canada. 

smoking, pickling and curing meats as well as making 
bolognas ; nor will the natives of Suabia, Upper Sax 
ony, the Rhine Provinces and the Canadians ever be 
able to equal them ! Neither must you imagine that 
our common soldiers in this place are deprived of any 
thing in favor of their officers. Both the former and 
the latter must take their provisions as they get them, 
for which they are charged daily one and a half pence. 
To the credit of our General-in-Chief Carleton be it 
said that through his efforts the German soldier re 
ceives daily, for this sum, i^ Ibs. of beef and \\ Ibs. 
of flour an allowance which even the most fastidious 
stomach can endure. In addition to the above allow 
ance, the soldier also receives excellent English peas 
and very good Irish butter. 

Canadians unite in declaring that they have never 
experienced such a winter as the one we have just 
passed through. As for ourselves, we have noticed 
no perceptible difference between the cold here and 
that of our own country, though we were astonished 
at the even temperature. Since the 24th of last 
November, when we had our first snow and ice, we 
have had neither rain nor thaw; in consequence of 
which the snow and ice have been with us ever since. 
There have been numerous and heavy falls of fine, dry 
snow, which seldom last longer than twelve hours. 
It can, therefore, easily be imagined that the earth 
becomes Covered with ice and snow to a depth of five 
or six feet. The natural weight of the snow, and the 
sun, which is warmer in Canada than with us at home, 

Letter from Canada. 61 

contract the snow into a solid mass upon which you 
can walk, and ride, if necessary, on cold days. The 
deep snow, the immense and dense forests, the thinly- 
settled districts and level fields, the numerous large 
rivers and lakes, and the cold, penetrating north and 
northwest winds cause Canada to be colder than its 
natural situation would warrant. For persons with 
weak lungs these winds are dangerous; and when they 
are raging it becomes impossible to keep the room 

The entire army wears during the winter a peculiar 
costume, consisting of overalls made of cloth, and 
extending from the feet up to the waist, a pair of large 
mittens, and a cloth cap covering the head, neck, and 
shoulders. The English regiments wear, in addition, 
capots Canadiens. The St. Lawrence River, which, 
as a rule, becomes solidly frozen every winter, has not, 
up to the month of February, formed an ice-bridge. 
Prior to the i6th of that month, no ice-bridge had 
formed between Three Rivers and Quebec. Above 
the former town the current destroyed one of these 
bridges, and the detached cakes of ice, having become 
jammed at our parish of St. Anne, and also at that of 
Les Grondines, gave us two ice-bridges on the I7th, 
which, however, only lasted until the iQth. One 
experiences a curious sensation in driving for the first 
time across a river, say three fourths of a German mile 
wide, upon one of these bridges, and seeing the open 
and raging water at hardly two paces from you on 
either side. You imagine that the ice is giving way 

62 Letter from Canada. 

beneath you. It cracks, and at times you jump over 
crevices a hand in width. The Canadians venture in 
their carioles upon ice only four inches in thickness. 

Now, dear Mamma, I will tell you something about 
Canadian domestic economy. In the middle of Sep 
tember the Canadians have a kind of Slaughtering 
Carnival, in comparison with which all similar events 
in Europe sink into insignificance. Within a period 
of from eight to ten days, all the fat four-footed ani 
mals and all the plump fowl in Canada are sacrificed. 
The cattle are cut up into pieces suitable for roasting 
or boiling, according to the taste of the owner, and the 
poultry are plucked of their feathers without dipping 
them into hot water as with us at home. The meat 
of both is then handed over to the care of Dame 
Nature until it is thoroughly frozen, when it is placed 
in hangar ds [sheds], so constructed that the wind 
sweeps through them from all sides ; and whenever a 
piece of meat is wanted from time to time, it is taken 
out of these receptacles. 

And now, dear Brother, for a few words in reply 
to your letter which now lies before me, and which, by 
the way, consists of but one and one-sixteenth of a 
page of writing-paper ! It seems to me that you still 
possess the qualities of a German Pliny, although I 
could wish that as long, at least, as I remain in Amer 
ica you would regard me with more consideration and 
manifest more of the characteristics of a Cicero ! 
Understand, Brother, once for all, that I am not quite 
yet, as you would insinuate, a Canadian pack-horse \ 

Letter from Canada. 63 

The best of my kit, it is true, I carry with me in my 
pocket, but my baggage proper goes by Caleches, 
Charettes, Carioles, Tr nines , Bateaux, Canots [canoes], 
or barques. However, let us now talk a little about 

No game, dear Brother, worth speaking of is to be 
found in the neighborhood of the Parishes, the habi- 
tans having exterminated all the wild animals in the 
vicinity of their farm-houses. In fact, to enjoy real 
hunting, it is essential that you join one of the nu 
merous Indian nations. You must accustom yourself 
to their manner of living, eating, sleeping, marching, 
and swimming, and also be able to travel four or five 
hundred leagues into the wilderness. The hunting 
trips that these savages undertake over mountains, 
rivers, lakes and morasses, and the means they employ 
to surmount all difficulties are beyond belief. They 
will go fifty or sixty German miles into a forest, build 
cabins there, and, leaving some of their companions 
behind, diverge in all directions in parties of two and 
three, and shoot anything they may encounter. At 
the end of four or five weeks, they will return to their 
general camp, which they can find as easily as if a 
plain and direct road led to it. Generally speak 
ing, an Indian is able to travel many hundred leagues 
through wildernesses, overcoming all obstacles in his 
way, and without deviating from a straight course. 
Trees, leaves, rivers and other natural objects serve 
him the same purpose as a compass. This is a fine in 
stinct, born with him and not acquired by use, experi- 

64 Letter from Canada. 

ence or long study ; and when it begins to dawn upon 
your mind that these savages can tell (as is very often 
the case) to what nation a man belongs by examining 
his footsteps ; when you learn furthermore, that he 
can follow a trail through bushes and briers in the dark, 
simply guided by his sense of smell, the same as our 
hunting- and bird-dogs/you are apt to be astonished at 
the qualities that God seems to have endowed these 
people with, and which you were wont to believe 
could only be possessed by animals. You will often 
find Canadians and Englishmen hunting with these 
people, or, more properly speaking, living in a wild 
state among them for a number of years. Indeed, not 
a year passes that a number of adventurers do not 
join these Indian tribes ; influenced, it may be, either 
by a wish to acquire a knowledge of the country, or 
by a love of hunting, or by a desire to accumulate a 
stock of furs, and establish with them at the same 
time a system of trade and barter. Captain Carleton 
of the 3ist English Regiment and first aide-de-camp 
to his uncle, the Governor and General, has lived with 
the Indians a number of years in this manner. He 
went through all the severe ordeals they subject them 
selves to in order to show their fortitude, and had 
himself tattooed with the signs and totems with which 
they are accustomed to decorate themselves. He even 
went so far as to take a wife froip among them, and 
he asserts that the hours he spent with them were 
the happiest of his life. You cannot imagine a more 
refined, gentle, friendly, well-mannered, and, at the 

Letter from Canada. 65 

same time, a more unaffected man than Captain Car- 
leton ; and although his constitution has become 
wrecked and delicate, he still continues to command 
the Indians who constitute our advanced guard, and 
by whom he is greatly beloved.* His present wife 
is a very handsome woman, a "my lady" and the 
sister of the wife of General Carleton. 

But, you ask, have we had plenty of amusement 
this winter ? I answer, right good ! You see, there 
are a number of seigneurs and cure s in our neighbor 
hood, and with their help and that of our officers in 

* Captain Christopher Carleton (the officer here alluded 
to), a nephew of General Guy Carleton, is often confused 
with Major Thomas Carleton, a younger brother of that 
general. Christopher (now Major), when the British in 
vaded the northern frontier of New York in 1780, had com 
mand of the force which crossed Lake Champlain, and which 
consisted of 1000 men, regulars, loyalists and Indians. He 
was a brave and zealous officer, for which qualities he was 
complimented by General Haldimand. He became a lieu 
tenant-colonel in the army, Feb. 19, 1783 ; and died at 
Quebec June 14, 1787. " For the last eleven years of his life 
he served in Canada, with an occasional visit to England 
only ; and he returned to Quebec for the last time, from one of 
these visits, Oct. 18, 1 786, in the ship " Carleton," accompanied 
by his wife, Lady Anne Carleton, who was the second 
daughter of the second Earl of Effingham and an elder 
sister of the wife of Sir Guy Carleton, and who, after the 
death of her husband, returned to England." For a more 
detailed account of Major Christopher Carleton, see General 
Horatio Rogers in Hadderfs Journal. 

66 Letter from Canada. 

the vicinity we have been enabled to have a convivial, 
sociable, happy, and at times a "high old time"! * 
Our seigneur at St. Anne, a passably rich man, a 
Grand Inspecteur des Fordts et des Eaux royales and 
an aide-de-camp of General Carleton, paid us a number 
of visits accompanied by friends, among whom were 
ladies from the city. Besides which, he has given us 
quite a number of little fttes at his country-seat. The 
cures, also, are not to be despised. They are good 
royalists, and, being the possessors of good livings, 
are able to furnish dinners for twenty persons and 
provide the same with good wines. The cur& at Batis- 
can, M. le Fevre, has given several very elegant files 
in honor of General von Riedesel, and has not forgot 
ten his neighbors at St. Anne. 

On Dec. 28th, [1776,] Brigadier-General Specht 
and myself started to drive from St. Anne to Quebec, 
both to pay our respects to General Carleton and, at 
the same time, to attend a file to which we had 
been formally invited. We passed the night with 
Lieutenant-Colonel Ehrenkrook at Cap Sante ; and 
on the 3<Dth paid our respects to his Excellency, 
and dined with him. In the evening we supped 
with Lieutenant-Governor Cramahe. On the 3ist 
there was a great festival ; that day being celebrated 
as the first anniversary of the deliverance of Que 
bec, on which occasion the rebels lost their great 
leader, General Montgomery. At 9 o clock in the 

* This is the exact expression in the text. 

Letter from Canada. 67 

morning, a thanksgiving service was held in the 
Cathedral, at which Monseigneur, the Bishop, offici 
ated. Eight unfortunate Canadians who had sided 
with the rebels were present, with ropes about their 
necks, and were forced to do penance before all in the 
church, and crave pardon of their God, Church and 
King. At 10 o clock, the civic and military authori 
ties, as well as all visiting and resident gentlemen, 
whether Canadian or English, assembled at the Gov 
ernment-House. All the resident gentlemen of 
Quebec, in accordance with their rank as officers of 
the militia, wore green suits with paille [straw] facings, 
waistcoats, knee-breeches, and silver epaulettes upon 
their shoulders. At 10.30, his Excellency came out of 
his room, and received congratulations. At 1 1, accom 
panied by Major-General Riedesel, Brigadier Specht 
and all of the officers and English gentlemen present, 
he left for a large square in front of the Recollets 
Convent,* where the French militia, or Canadian 
citizen-soldiery of Quebec, were drawn up in eight 
companies. They fired off three trains of gunpowder, 
lit bonfires, and shouted Vive le Roi! From here the 
company proceeded to the " Upper Town" where we 
attended religious services in the English church. 
Here the roar of cannon from the citadel intermingled 
with the Te Deum, while enthusiastic citizens shot off 
shot-guns and muskets from their windows. At 
3 o clock, the General gave a dinner to sixty persons, 

* For a sketch of the Recollets Convent, see Appendix. 

68 Letter from Canada. 

at which no ladies, except the two Lady Carletons, 
were present. 

In the evening, at six, the entire company started 
for the large English auberge [hotel], where over 
ninety-four ladies and two hundred chapeaux [gentle 
men] were already assembled in the great hall. The 
ladies were seated on rows of raised benches. A con 
cert was at once begun, during which an English ode, 
written in honor of the festival, was sung. This ode 
was composed of ariettas, recitations, and choruses. 
During the music, tickets were distributed to those 
of both sexes who desired to dance. Every chapeau 
received a ticket for a certain lady, with whom he was 
obliged to dance the entire evening, and which was 
numbered i, 2, etc. During these dances, some distinc 
tion is made between the rank of the chapeaiix and the 
ladies. Strangers, however, receive preference. Every 
couple goes through the minuet alone, and the ladies call 
off the name of the minuet to be danced. At large 
balls this custom becomes very tiresome. English 
dances are performed with two couples ; and the long 
hall is divided off by rows of benches. All strife for 
precedence, or, in other words, pushing, is done away 
with ; and the Governor himself, who is not a dancer, 
does everything in his power to keep things running 
smoothly. Ladies who do not care to dance put on a 
small Bugel-Rocke;* and gentlemen who also do not 
feel like dancing, wear black cloth shoes with felt soles. 

* Literally an "ironed cloak." 

Letter from Canada. 69 

All kinds of refreshments were served ; and notwith 
standing that the place was somewhat confined, no 
spectator was incommoded. The streets in front of 
the hotel were alive with people. At midnight a reg 
ular supper was served at a number of tables. It is 
true that the eatables were all cold ; but delicacies 
and pastry could be had in superabundance. At 
2 o clock dancing was again renewed, and lasted until 
broad daylight. All the English, and the French 
officers of militia at Quebec gave these f&tes, which 
must easily have cost seven thousand reich-thaler* 

On the following morning, or rather the same 
morning (Jan. i, 1777), the Governor held a levee, 
at which the Church, the Bar, the Army and Navy 
and commercial life were represented. The entire 
city fairly swarmed with carioles, for everybody was 
making New-Year s calls. We also made calls, but 
were obliged to refuse a number of invitations. In the 
afternoon we dindd with M. de la Naudiere ;f and 
in the evening there was a large assemblage at the 
Government-House, where play was kept up at about 
thirty tables till 10 o clock, when every one went home 

* A reich-thaler is about equal to seventy-five cents in 
U. S. money. 

f Charles Louis Tarieu de Lanaudiere. He accompanied 
his father-in-law, La Corne St. Luc, with a mixed band of 
Indians and Canadians, upon Burgoyne s expedition ; but 
he seems not to have taken a very prominent part in that 
campaign, and he returned to Canada before the capitulation. 
For a detailed sketch of him see Hadden s Journal. 

7O Letter from Canada. 

and to bed. On the 2d we dined with Colonel St. 
Leger, colonel of the 34th Regiment and at present 
commandant at Quebec, and with whom we had be 
come intimately acquainted while in camp at Cham- 
bly. As none but gentlemen were present, a large 
number of toasts were drunk.* In the evening, we 
asked permission of the General [i.e. Carleton] to re 
turn, notwithstanding we had been invited to several 
ftes, and also to participate in a sleighing-party, made 
up of one hundred carioles, to the country-seat of 
Dr. - . This man is a Doctor of Medicine, a Jus 
tice of the Peace, and uncommonly rich. He is the 
Lucullus of Quebec, and, like him, has no wife of his 

On Jan. 2oth, Major-General von Riedesel cele 
brated the birthday of her Majesty the Queen at Three 
Rivers. We covered the distance (7 English miles) 
in four hours, in a cariole, and dined at a table laid for 
forty covers.;}; Many healths were drunk in cham- 

* This must exactly have suited St. Leger, who liked a 
rollicking kind of life. See his performances in this line as 
related in the appendix to my " Sir John Johnson s Orderly 

f The reader will not fail to observe the subtle irony of 
this remark. 

% General Riedesel, in giving an account of this dinner (see 
my translation, vol. I. p. 90), also says forty a proof, inci 
dentally, of the statement of the writer, who appears to 
have been a person of unusual discrimination and accurate 

Letter from Canada. 71 

pagne, while, in front of the house, a small cannon was 
roaring ! A ball was given in the afternoon and even 
ing, at which thirty-seven ladies were present. These 
remained to supper, and were waited on by their cav 
aliers. The charms of Demoiselle Tonnancour were 
greatly heightened by her jewels ; still, poor Demoi 
selle R e, in her faded calico gown, was preferred 

by many, on account both of her natural and sweet 
charms, and the beauty of her voice. Know, my dear 
sir, that the Canadian beauties sing Italian and French 
chansons ; and also that numerous songs, composed in 
honor of General von Riedesel, have been sung in 
Trots Rivikres. 

I note the 5th of February as a great/~^-day because, 
on that date, seven couples were married in the church 
at St. Anne. On this august occasion, the Brigadier 
led to the altar a niece of the cure; Major von Ehren- 
krook, a squaw who was to marry an Indian of the 
Nation des Ftes de Boule ; * and I, a relative of the 
Captain of Militia. This post of honor can only be 
filled when the intended brides have no fathers to give 
them away their escorts, in such a case, taking the 
place of the latter. We dined with the cure , were 
entertained at the houses of the different brides, and 

* " At Three Rivers the F$tes de Boule tribe descended by 
the northern waters to this town, generally at the end of 
May or the beginning of June. Trade with this tribe was 
one of the principal industries of Three Rivers, and great 
efforts were made to direct it to the town." Kingsfords 
History of Canada. 

72 Letter from Canada. 

were the recipients of all those little attentions, courte 
sies, etc., which obtain among our peasants at home 
at a marriage-festival. As our musicians were in 
Quebec, and village musicians are unknown here, we 
were obliged to dance to the humming of the tra-la-la 
of a Canadian minuet. We also had to endure the 
bawling of chansons, sung from stentorian lungs. On 
account of our services to the brides, in giving them 
away, etc., we are considered by the good people of 
St. Anne as one of themselves ; for, from the old 
grandmamma of 70 to the young maiden of 15 to 17 
years, they all offer us their mouths to be kissed when 
ever they meet us. This is the Canadian greeting be 
tween relatives "and intimate friends ; more formal ac 
quaintances offer merely their hands. This custom 
prevails not only among the well-to-do, but among 
the lower classes ; and is one of the rights of friend 

I have not heard from you for so long a time that I 
think your pen must be frozen. Therefore let me 
tell you something about Canadian snow. One of the 
damned disagreeable things to be met with in Canada is 
the prevalence of fierce winds. They rise generally 
every third day, and last about twelve hours. They 
cause the snow to drift from place to place, and gradu 
ally to fill up all the holes and pits until they are level 
with the rest of the land. The effect of this is to make 
the surrounding country look very pretty, but it is 
none the less dangerous to travel without taking proper 
precautions ; otherwise one may tumble into one of 

Letter from Canada. 73 

these holes and break his limbs, or a horse and sleigh 
may fall into one and the horse remain buried alive for 
several weeks ! In the same manner as a forester and 
gun-master in our country can find a remedy for 
everything,* so these people over here know how to 
overcome all the difficulties incident to their roads in 
winter. Every habitant is compelled to keep the road 
clear between his own house and that of his nearest 
neighbor, to a width which will allow two carioles either 
to drive abreast or to pass each other. To facilitate 
this, young pine-trees are stuck up on each side of the 
road, twenty feet apart ; and in this artificial alley one 
can drive with safety. One can scarcely imagine how 
these roads are changed, either by the weather or the 
force of circumstances ; and each time a road is shifted 
it is renamed and the trees pulled up. The roads 
across the ice on the St. Lawrence River are staked 
out in a similar manner ; and whenever a traveller 
meets with a weak spot in the ice, he is obliged to stop 
and mark the place. In fact, travelling in Canada is 
peculiar ; for to-day the road may lead over a hill, and 
to-morrow over a river. 

Pedestrians, however, can skim over the snow like 
hares by means of raquettes [snow-shoes], which they 
bind under their feet. These things are very similar 
to the raquettes we use at home to throw about a ball 

* One of the duties in Germany of a forester or game 
keeper is to keep the guns and all sporting articles in repair, 
and be a general factotum. 

74 Letter from Canada. 

of feathers [a shuttlecock], the only difference being 
that they are twice as large. In using them, one must 
take a long stride, at the same time trailing his feet on 
a slant. The English regiments were busily engaged 
this last winter in learning to use them ; but our regi 
ments have received none, as the required number 
have not yet been finished. Every habitant has such 
a machine,* which he cannot do without if he desires 
to promenade about the neighborhood. 

Captain Foyf of the Royal Artillery, who occupies 
at the same time the position of Adjutant-General and 
Commissary of Musters, and who formerly command 
ed a company under Major-General von Rhetz in 
Germany, and an old acquaintance of yours, has a 
thorough knowledge of North America, having trav 
ersed it in all directions and looked at it critically, 

* " These are undoubtedly the scritofiuni of Paul, the Lon- 
gobard. See Ihre s Glossarium under the word Skida" 
Note by Schlozer. Our word " skid " may also be derived 
from this word. 

f Captain Eduard Foy at this time deputy Adjutant- 
General, not Adjutant-General resigned his position of 
Commissary of Musters June 6, 1777, when promoted to a 
full Adjutant-Generalship. He was appointed secretary of 
the Governor-General of Canada July I, 1778, and died April 
27, 1779. His wife accompanied Mrs. General Riedesel to 
Canada in the spring of 1777, when both ladies went to join 
their husbands. Regarding the reference to Germany in 
the text, it may be added that he served with distinction at 
the battle of Minden receiving, the day after the battle, 
the thanks of Prince Ferdinand in General Orders. 

Letter from Canada. 75 

with the eye of an engineer. He has been Governor 
of Hampshire [New Hampshire], and also has posses 
sions in New England ; but since the Rebellion he has 
been compelled to look at both of them from afar ! 
Captain Phillips is really only a Lieutenant-Colonel 
of Artillery ; but, in this war, he has, by virtue of a 
royal commission, the place, rank and pay of a 
Major-General, by which title he is likewise desig 
nated. General Carleton, also, has the real pay, rank 
and honors of a General of Infantry, while in England 
he is but a Major-General. 

We have now been sitting for four months in a 
veritable prison, cut off, as we are, from all communi 
cation with the neighboring States. We await, impa 
tiently, the arrival of European ships, in order not only 
to obtain accurate news from Europe, but to find out 
what has been going on last autumn in New York, 
Jersey, Pennsylvania, and in our adjacent districts. 
Is that not sad ? The winter has been so mild that 
the streams in the wilderness of New Scotland [Nova 
Scotia] have not been frozen solid.* As a conse 
quence, no one has been able to use the rivers as high 
ways ; and even under the most favorable conditions 
of the ice, a single person cannot undertake a trip with 
out risking his life a hundred-fold. In addition, the 

* This open winter, at any rate, cannot be attributed 
either to the irrigation of the western deserts or the chang 
ing of the Gulf Stream ! As a general rule, I think it will be 
found that the climate of the United States and Canada is 
about the same, on the average, year after year. 

76 Letter from Canada. 

St. Lawrence River, which seems to make ice for no 
other reason than to break it up, and which, further 
more, as if in sport, throws up masses of ice to the 
height of a mountain, only to let it come down with 
a crash like a house of cards, will allow no vessel to 
rest on its waters. Consequently, this highway is also 
closed to us. The rebels, who are still in possession 
of Carillon (which fort the Indians have rightly named 
Ticonderoga, or in French Cul-de-sac, because it lies 
in the cul-de-sac of Lake Champlain),* hem in all the 
news which otherwise might reach us by way of Al 
bany, on the Hudson River, from our friends in the 
English North American States. Thus, there remains 
to us only one road by which we receive news, and 
this leads through the wilderness back of the English 
colonies, and lands one fifty miles the other side of 
Niagara. Anybody who is such a fool as to travel 
this road is of necessity compelled to hew for himself 
a path that may not again be trodden by human feet. 
We have actually received news by way of this road, 
although upon sifting it we have found it to consist of 
nothing save rumor. A very intimate friend of mine, 
Captain W- - of the Sth English Regiment, stationed 
for the last five years at Niagara, and in the smaller 
forts within a distance of 100 leagues from that post, 
but who, personally, has been attached to the German 
Corps, and upon all our marches and encampments 

* The exact translation of the Indian name Ticonderoga 
is, " There the Lake [i.e. Lake Champlain] shuts itself." 

Letter from Canada. \ 77 

has lodged with me, has, it is true, furnished me with 
news received from his comrades at Niagara. He has 
also sent the same to the dry and uninteresting news 
papers at Quebec. Nevertheless, the particulars con 
tained in these despatches lack confirmation. As yet, 
General Carleton has not received the least circum 
stantial or accurate information from the army of 
General Howe. This much, however, is certain, viz.: 
that the rebels have sustained severe reverses both at 
Long Island and at Kingsbridge. It is, moreover, 
confidently believed that a portion of Howe s army 
has entered Pennsylvania, and that the Quakers have 
withdrawn from Congress ; also that Hancock and 
Franklin two of the most important men in that 
body have disappeared, and it is believed they have 
gone to Europe.* The quarters of General Lee, one 
of the foremost of the enemy s generals, have been 
broken up by a detachment of English light cavalry. 

Our nearest foe, about 2000 strong, is stationed at 
Carillon, and is battling with want and misery. Our 
next expedition will be acrossf Lake Champlain to 
Carillon ; whence we shall probably march to Albany. 
Once there, we shall have the opportunity to get a 
look at New York, where many of our adherents, 
friends and countrymen are to be found. Mr. John 

* This rumor was correct, so far as Franklin was con 
cerned, he having arrived at the French Court on the 2ist 
of December, 1776. 

t It would have been more nearly correct to say up Lake 

78 Letter from Canada. 

MacKenna, an Irishman by birth, but raised at Lovven 
in the Netherlands and therefore half German, recently 
fled from a Catholic congregation in New York on 
account of disturbances there to our camp, and now 
preaches to the Catholic soldiers in the wilds of 
Canada, travelling from company to company. He 
has given me good descriptions of New York, and 
assures me that the larger portion of the law-abiding 
and prominent citizens of that town are royalists, but, 
for the present, are forced to remain passive. 

The destruction of the enemy s fleet upon Lake 
Champlain has been a severe blow to them ; and, ac 
cordingly, we have one less obstacle to overcome. 
Our operations will be mainly confined to ships; and, 
for this reason, every regiment will be supplied with 
twenty-five bateaux, which they will be compelled 
to row themselves. As soon as the river [Sorel] is 
open for navigation, we shall begin to drill our men, 
so that they can row either in divisions or in com 
panies. The artillery is likewise mounted on bateaux 
which can quickly be collected so as to form batteries. 

We have to adopt a peculiar method of warfare in 
this country one entirely different from our system. 
In marching through forests and underbrush our in 
fantry have to march two abreast, and at a distance of 
eighteen inches apart. Cavalry cannot be used at all, 
and our dragoons are therefore obliged to go on foot. 
Our standards are a great inconvenience, and none of 
the English regiments have brought theirs with them. 
Every English regiment has detached companies of 

Letter from Canada. 79 

grenadiers and light infantry, combined into battalions, 
which are very useful. The corps of Canadian Volun 
teers, under the command of Canadian officers, is not 
to be despised. 

The Indians, on account of their inborn bestiality, 
are not to be trusted. They are very brave, but -un 
disciplined ; and for this reason have English and 
Canadian officers. Now, however, they greatly desire 
to be independent, and, as faithful allies and friends, 
to fight for the king without being commanded by 
English generals and officers ; and an Iroke [Iroquois] 
named Joseph, who has spent some time in England 
and naturally knows something of the English and 
the savages, desires to achieve for himself a name as 
chief of an army of Indians.* Every means will be 
tried to prevent this ; for God help those colonists 
who are their near neighbors should this scheme be 
carried into effect !f The Indians are curious rogues 
who go from one extreme to another. I was in Lor- 
etto, [Lorette] where live that branch of the Hurons 
which more than eighty years ago embraced Christian 
ity and have now become accustomed to cultivate their 
fields and raise cattle, and was astonished to see with 
what tenacity they still cling to the old customs of their 

* Joseph Brant Thayendanega. See Stone s Brant. 

f As hinted at in the text, Carleton, who was an exceed 
ingly humane man, undoubtedly used all his influence to 
curb the ferocity of the Indians. If the writer was alive the 
following year, he saw his prediction fulfilled in the Cherry 
Valley massacre by this same " Joseph." 

8o Letter from Canada. 

ancestors. Their churches are very odd, and have 
neither chairs nor benches ; but, on the other hand, 
they are filled with home-made wooden images of 
what, at one time, may have represented Hebrew, 
Greek, Roman or more modern European saints. 
Now, however, they are attired in savage costumes 
and have been beautifully daubed with paint. I will 
not soon forget the good St. Peter with his bunch of 
keys and his painted face ! 

I could give you still further droll accounts of the 
Indian Prince Athanas, revered by the savages within 
a radius of one hundred miles and who lives here, in 
Loretto ; and also of his princes, his sons, and his three 
daughters, who are princesses. Prince Athenas, by 
the way, was cured of a wound in the leg by our Regi 
mental Surgeon Br , who since then is esteemed 

by the tribe as a veritable ^Esculapius ! But the sands 
in my hour-glass have nearly run ; and so no more for 

The 1 3th of April still finds us in our old Winter 
Quarters notwithstanding our preparations for march 
ing were made three weeks ago. Everything in 
Canada depends upon the weather ; and during the 
last four weeks its changes have been beyond belief. 
On the 5th and 6th of March we had a penetrating 
cold ; the 7th was an agreeable spring day ; from the 
7th to the 1 6th we had a continuous thaw; and the 
days were so warm that all the ice-bridges on the great 
river (St. Lawrence) disappeared, causing General 
Carleton great difficulty in returning from Montreal 

Letter from Canada. 81 

to Quebec. From the i6th to the 2oth the weather 
was disagreeable but not cold. On the 2Oth and 2ist 
snow again fell to the depth of two to three feet. On 
the 25th it commenced snowing so violently that ice- 
bridges began again to form across the great river. 
Indeed, we have seldom had colder weather at home 
during Christmas week than we had here during Holy 
Week and the three Easter days. Great Northern 
Lights could be seen in the heavens every evening. 
On the 3d and 4th of April we again had a heavy 
snow-storm, and the cold was very severe. On the 
5th it was moderately cold : during the evening of the 
6th a heavy rain set in ; on the 7th we had several 
severe thunder-storms and a great thaw ; and on the 
loth it was so warm that all the doors and windows 
were thrown open during the day, while in the night 
we had another terrific thunder-storm. The nth, was 
raw and damp; the i2th very windy; and to-day, the 
1 3th, the violent north-west wind which has been 
raging since sunrise has caused the weather to become 
so cold that it is almost impossible to keep warm in 
the room ; while everything is once more frozen as 
hard as a rock. How can an army cross rivers and 
march over execrable roads under such circumstances ? 
The cracking of the ice in the St. Lawrence has 
been incessant all day. The violent wind has lashed 
the river into a fury, causing it to loosen huge cakes, 
of ice which, after throwing them up into huge moun 
tains, it again rends asunder. In spite of this, dear 
Brother, there are people who either voluntarily or 

82 Letter from Canada. 

from compulsion cross this river in canoes. The fact 
that two companies of Specht s regiment and one of 
Rhetz s, stationed in five parishes along the south side 
of the river, were obliged, in order to obtain their 
orders and provisions, to cross to the north side, has 
made it a burdensome affair for the regiments of the 
brigade. Thank God there have as yet been no ac 
cidents in our vicinity. Up to the present time of 
writing, God has spared us our health ; and in three 
weeks but one man has died in two regiments. Deser 
tions are out of the question in Canada ; and no 
Canadian would think of helping a deserter along. 

With our 1 have spoken several times both at 

Three Rivers and St. Anne, besides keeping up with 
him an uninterrupted correspondence. We have both 
taken great pains to make new discoveries and to study 
up Canada thoroughly. This, however, is extremely 
difficult ; and the stupidity and ignorance of the 
Canadians regarding their own country is beyond be 
lief. To a certain extent, we already know more than 
they do ; and G - will soon become so proficient that 
he will be able to send home a beautiful topographical 
map of Canada. The Grenadier Battalion lies about 
thirty leagues from us, on which account I have only 
been able to speak to two officers about it. 

N. S. We received news to-day (the 2oth of April) 
that the English ship London had received orders to 
refit and sail for Europe as soon as possible. All 
letters must be finished immediately in order to get 
them to Quebec in time, I have already begun a new 

Letter from Canada. 83 

letter, which I will send by the next vessel, and in the 
course of the summer I intend writing you several. 
As the thaw has set in in earnest, we will, without 
doubt, begin our march in about ten days. 

Several days ago Ensign von B - was drowned in 
a stream no wider than the Ocker : how it happened I 
have not yet been able to learn. We have just re 
ceived word that the brave Captain Mackay, with 
twenty-five Indians, has arrived here on his way to 
Quebec, having been for some weeks on a reconnoi 
tring trip through the woods back of Crown Point 
and Carillon and as far as Lake Champlain. While on 
this scout, he dispersed a detachment of 16 officers 
and 23 men. Some of the members of his party 
also told us that a Hessian regiment has been sur 
prised, half of it being captured and the other half 
killed.* On the other hand, everything seems to be 
going our way in Pennsylvania. It is also true that 
the rebels were badly whipped last year in New York 
and Jersey. On several occasions the Hessians are 
said to have massacred the enemy in a terrible man 
ner. Neither would they give quarter, because the 
rebels refused to grant an exchange of prisoners. 


* In allusion, probably, to the route of a Hessian regiment 
at Springfield, N. J., by Gen. George Clinton, Jan. 5, 1777. 



July 27, 1777. 

We are now in a country called New Hampshire. 
It lies north of the old New England States, and is 100 
to 150 English miles in length, by 50 to 40 in breadth. 
This country consists of so-called new Concessions 
[Grants], which, notwithstanding their name, have 
been in existence for more than eighty years. This 
tract of land is divided up into squares 6 to 8 Eng 
lish miles long and the same in width. The inhabi 
tants seem to take delight in calling these sub-divi 
sions Countries, Districts or Provinces. Then again, 
each of these squares is divided into sub-sections for 
habitations, and with such exactness that all boundary 
disputes in the future are precluded. f Each of these 
squares has a name and constitutes a small common 
wealth of its own. It either has some rich man for 

* The present State of Vermont. 

f The writer in this remark was entirely mistaken, as 
witness the fierce and long dispute of the " New Hampshire 
Grants," between Vermont and New Hampshire. 


Letter from Castle-Town. 85 

seigneur, or is made up of free habitans who are very 
desirous of having a small market town or borough 
in their midst. It thus happens that often a name is 
given to a town when, as an actual fact, no such town 
is in existence. This is the case with Castle-Town 
which consists of about seventeen miserable houses. 
Clarendon, Grootland, [Rutland ?] Pultney, &c., are 
neighboring counties. If you are desirous of obtain 
ing a more lucid idea of this curious state of things, 
you will have to write to England for a map of the 
country called " The Province of New York, New 
Jersey, with a portion of Pennsylvania, and the Prov 
ince of Quebec, drawn by Mayor Holland, 1777." 

These " Concessions" [Grants] are not as thickly 
settled as they might be, since they are really the out 
skirts of the New England States. There is also a 
wide difference between the various counties in the 
way of population. In some, there are from forty to 
sixty houses ; in others but twenty ; and in still others 
only seven or eight. Many of them are but newly set 
tled, and contain only a few straggling houses. More 
over, half, nay, perhaps two thirds or five sixths of 
these " Concessions," are entirely composed of sum 
mer habitations merely ; for, in other words, the 
owners have built mere block-houses, having neither 
partitions, glass-windows, nor stoves. The probable 
reason for this is, that they live in them only from the 
beginning of spring until autumn. If the head of a 
house has numerous sons or daughters, he buys one 
of these places for a house, and either rents it himself 

86 Letter from Castle-Town. 

in the spring, or sends some one of his family to it, 
who according to his instructions, destroys more and 
more of the trees upon it, until arable land, meadows 
and gardens are obtained. In this way, the land 
around his house increases in value yearly, until one 
of the sons or daughters marries, when it is presented 
to them. The young couple thus have a roomy and 
comfortable house to live in ; and from a merely sum 
mer habitation they convert it into a very comfortable 
home. Thoughtful fathers provide, in this manner, a 
substantial and permanent home for their children 
situated, though they often are, fifty or more English 
miles from the old homestead. It so happens, there 
fore, that really elegant houses, well furnished, are 
often met with in this part of the country. 

Very good grain, especially rye, is raised here ; and, 
indeed, the fields and meadows for the purposes of 
agriculture cannot be surpassed. The pasturage es 
pecially is so rich, that the Canadian cattle would be 
come sick in feeding on it. It is true that the Cana 
dian horses are fifty per cent better than those to be 
found here ; but, on the other hand, the horned cattle 
are eighty per cent better than those in Canada. The 
oxen here would lose nothing in comparison with 
those to be found in Friesland. They plow and pull 
heavy carts and wagons, in the construction of which 
no wood or heavy iron is spared. Thley (the oxen) 
pull them by the aid of a wooden yoke attached about 
their necks. The gardens are better and laid out on a 
more sensible plan than those in Canada ; and a lover 

Letter from Castle-Town. 87 

of real, genuine trout ought to come to Castle- 

Many rattle-snakes are to be found in the woods in 
this vicinity ; and we have killed a number of them. 
Their bite is one of the most poisonous known. 
Death invariably follows within twelve hours, if the 
proper antidotes are not immediately taken, or unless 
the flesh around the bite is not at once cut out. As 
soon as a snake has been killed, some of the habitans 
present lose no time in cutting off the head and part 
of the tail and burying them in the ground ; as they 
believe that a pure and clear stream would be poi 
soned were the severed parts to be thrown into it. On 
one occasion, they begged of us a snake which one of 
our party had killed, and made of it a very palatable 
soup. In all seriousness, however, even the English 
regard the rattle-snake as a delicacy ; and prefer it to 
the best eel, especially if made into a soup, which is 
said to have a delicious flavor. These delicacies are 
extremely welcome in the kitchen of General Bur- 
goyne. It may be that I am prejudiced, but none of 
it for me! Thanks! Recently, I had some green 
soup with Brigadier Fraser ; but of what it was made 
I do not know ; and perhaps if I had I might not 
have tasted it ! It was a turtle soup ; and now I 
know that bouillon can hardly have more strength or 
taste better ! 

The States of New York and New England are 
now engaged in a desperate lawsuit in regard to the 
ownership of the tract of land (where we now are) 

&8 Letter from Castle- Town. 

called the " New Hampshire Grants." * I do not 
wish to interfere in the matter or take sides ; there 
fore I am unable to state whether my feet at present 
are resting on New England or New York soil ! 

In view of our difficulty with the rebels, as they 
are called by the English, or with the " rebellers," as 
they are termed by our people, it is probable that we 
will have to appoint a day for a new term of court to 
be held in the near future at Fort Edward, and 
at which a decision will be given as to who shall 
be master. Here [i.e. Fort Edward], for instance, 
we have Mr. Putnam [Gen. Israel Putnam] stationed 
with his corps. Fort St. George, on Lake George 
(formerly called Lac Sacrament), is likewise occupied 
by the rebels. American nuts ! f Regarding the 
sentiments of the various colonists, they vary in each 
district. In Pultney the feeling is entirely in favor 
of the rebels, and all the houses are empty. In 
Castle-Town one third are royalists, and two thirds are 
rebels. Clarendon is neutral, etc., etc. On an aver 
age, you may estimate that at the utmost one sixth 
are royalists, one sixth are neutral, and four sixths 
are rebels ; and in this computation I hardly believe 

* If the reader is at all curious about this controversy, he 
is referred to my " Life of Governor George Clinton" in the 
" Magazine of American History" for June 1879, where the 
subject is treated quite in detail. 

fThat is, "American nuts for us to crack"! referring to 
the problem of driving General Putnam and his corps from 
Fort Edward, and the rebels from Fort George. 

Letter from Castle-Town. 89 

that I overestimate the numbers of the Americans 
(rebels).* Very few put themselves out to take the 
oath of allegiance, and numbers maintain a neutrality, 
very likely on account of our proximity and their 
possessions. In all truth, we are human and kind 
enough to these unhappy people. On the other hand, 
the rebels act in a harsh and barbarous manner 
toward those of their neighbors who manifest a friendly 
feeling toward us, and who have had the placards 
of an army placed upon their farms and houses in 
order to protect them.f As I said before, most of their 
houses are deserted, the inhabitants having fled into 
the interior with their goods and chattels. Conse 
quently, any cattle that they have left behind them 
have become our lawful prizes. Thank Heaven we 
are no longer obliged to" live on daily rations of pork 
and lard, for had we continued to live on these salt 
viands the consequences to our health in this heated 
climate would have been very pernicious. 

The colonists, withal, are large, handsome, sinewy, 

* This statement only corroborates how mistaken Lord 
George Germain was in planning the Burgoyne Expedition 
thinking that all New England would flock to the Royal 
Standard. This has been fully and admirably brought out 
in Professor John Fiske s recent work on the " American 

t Undoubtedly the cruelties were not all on one side. 
Prof. Fiske, in his work above referred to, puts it correctly 
when he says : " There can be no doubt that Whigs and 
Tories were alike guilty of cruelty and injustice." 

90 Letter from Castle-Town. 

well built, strong and healthy men. The young 
women are white [i.e. fair], well formed and plump, 
and give promise of a numerous and healthy progeny. 

You must know that there are many different sects 
in America who are distinguished from each other by 
their dress and their beards. It is a fact, that several 
of the inhabitants actually inquired of us as to what 
religion our grenadiers belonged ; nor could they be 
made to believe that they all had one religion because 
they wore mustaches ! 

In the open field the rebels are not of much count, 
but in the woods they are redoubtable. At the 
present time we are almost continually marching 
through, and living in, forests. It is on such occasions 
that the rebels lurk in the woods and dart from tree 
to tree. In their skill as marksmen* they may be com 
pared with our peasants in Sollinger : their riflemen 
are terrible. The latter wear a short white shirt over 
their clothes, the sleeves being bordered by a number 
of rows of white linen fringes. A rebel invariably 
looks for protection to his musket, which is very 
long. They load their guns with three small and 
three somewhat larger bullets ; bad enough for him 
whom they hit. Nearly all of the wounded in the 
affair at Hubert-Town had three or four wounds all 
caused by one shot. We have some consolation, 
however, in the fact that their muskets will not send 
a bullet farther than eighty paces ; and they would 

* Literally, " in their ability to hit an object." 

Letter from Castle-Town. 91 

find themselves in a sad fix if our soldiers could shoot 
as well as they. They respect, however, the prowess 
of our riflemen. From a military point of view, the 
officers of the rebels do not cut much of a figure ; 
though an exception to this remark should be made 
in the cases of Captain Grobschmidt [Goldsmith ?] 
Lieutenant Becker, Ensign Schneider, etc. all tried 
men. You will also find that man) of the privates in 
the American army are superior in station, in private 
life, to these superior officers ; but in the above cases 
they evidently prefer military manoeuvres to eating. 

Our Indians, whom we brought with us from Can 
ada, and who, while there, were supposed to be Chris 
tians, or nearly so, have since behaved like hogs. 
When it comes to plundering they are on hand every 
time ;* and most of them have remained at Ticon- 
deroga and Skeenesborough [now Whitehall, N. Y.j. 
While here they have filled themselves with rum in 
true military style. But few of their leaders remain 
true ; and after every campaign they get " full," and 
remain in that condition until they reach home, when 
thay begin to brag of their deeds while away. The 
Indians who are attached to the corps of Colonel St. 
Leger are, on the contrary, of a better quality, but as 
yet we do not know where they are ; perhaps we will 

* An exact translation ; in fact, the reader cannot fail to 
observe how many of our slang or, perhaps, idiomatic, ex 
pressions are the same both in German and English. 

92 Letter from Castle- Town. 

soon hear from them.* A Mr. St. Luc has also 5,00 
savages with him, which he has brought from distant 
northern countries, f Among them are some Ona- 
toais.J The Onatoais have, hitherto, been bitter ene 
mies of the English ; and in former wars dealt them 
many severe blows. This is the first instance of their 
taking up arms for the English. These Indians are 
uncivilized, large-framed, warlike and enterprising, but 
as fierce as Satan. They are accused of being canni 
bals. This, however, I do not believe, notwithstand 
ing that they are capable of tearing their enemies to 
pieces with their teeth when infuriated. J In all prob- 

* The writer to his chagrin probably heard very soon after 
ward where both the Indians and St. Leger were flying 
like stags before the hunters of the Mohawk Valley ! Vide 
Stone s "Brant" and " Sir John Johnson s Orderly Book." 

t In my " Orderly Book of Sir John Johnson," published 
by Munsell s Sons, Albany, N. Y., the reader, if he cares, will 
find the names of all these Indian nations under St. Luc. 
They, indeed, came from distant northern countries, coming 
from miles beyond the Great Lakes. 

\ Ottawas ; called also, by contemporary writers, Ottawa, 
Ottoauay, Ottoaua, Ottosa, Ottouaua. 

And he might have added, through the influence of St. 
Luc, who was most shabbily rewarded for his services by the 
English Government. 

|| It remains, nevertheless, the fact, that the Indians espe 
cially the Ottauas did practice cannibalism ; whether be 
cause they fancied the flesh, or because they thought that to 
eat of the meat of their enemies it would make them brave. 
This is corroborated by proofs too numerous to mention. 

Letter from Castle-Town. 93 

ability there is no truth in the story that they keep a 
supply of human flesh on hand, for they seem to like 
the flesh of bullocks too well. Their carriage be 
speaks their loyalty, and their savage decorations and 
ornaments become them quite well ; indeed, their 
whole appearance is a soldierly one. Mr. St. Luc,* 
who is a Canadian himself, participated in several 
campaigns with them against the English during the 
last war (i. e., the war which lost Canada to the 
French), and in some respects became a terror to the 
English colonists. f He is still said to have a large 
number of English scalps in his possession. He is 
about sixty years of age, still very lively and active, 
and has only recently been released from his captivity 
among the rebels. He is rich. M. de La Naudiere, 
who is his son-in-law, has taken a command under him 
lately a circumstance which astonishes me greatly. 

I have just been agreeably surprised to receive your 
letters dated February 24th and March 2d. I have now 
received six letters in all from you during the present 
year. I have also, at this moment, received the joyful 
news that the ship " Isabelle Dorothea," with eighty- 

The reader, ho.wever, is referred to Kip s " Early Jesuit Mis 
sions," where the writer furnishes from the narratives of the 
early Jesuit Fathers full proof of this statement. 

* For an account of St. Luc see my " Burgoyne s Cam 
paign," Appendix. 

t St. Luc was the instigator of many of those forays on 
the New England settlements which kept that province in 
constant alarm and terror for so many years. 

94 Letter from Castle-Town. 

four recruits on board, and which had been given up 
for lost, has arrived safely at Quebec. 

We have just parted from our beloved bateaux 
which brought us from Canada, and so safely carried 
us and our plunder over the St. Lawrence and Sorel * 
rivers and Lake Champlain, to our present place of 
abode. Our men have become good boatmen, and 
toward the last any bateau contained a good naviga 
tor [steersman]. The remainder of our voyage [jour 
ney] will henceforth be made on land. From neces 
sity our baggage has been greatly reduced, and many 
officers will have nothing but their knapsacks. 
Horses, of course, are scarce and very dear, and those 
transports of horses that are gradually arriving from 
Canada will be used for drawing the cannon, maga 
zine-wagons, etc. Nevertheless, I have two horses, 
and perhaps kind Providence will provide me with a 
third one. Most of the officers, also, have been able 
to secure at least one horse. 

July 22d: The rebels have been polite enough to 
vacate Fort George. We are, consequently, finally 
masters of Lake St. Sacrement, a great advantage to 
us, as we can now bring up our provisions. They 
seem, however, inclined to lead us a dance about Fort 
Edward ; and we are, therefore, already beginning to 
brighten up our steps for the occasion. 

On July 24th we marched to the Leading-Place 

*The river running from Lake Champlain into the St. 
Lawrence, and also called the Richelieu and the St. John s. 

Letter from Castle-Town. 95 

[Landing-Place], and on the 25th to Skeenesborough. 
The English corps has advanced as far as Fort Anne,* 
and to-morrow we will follow them. The enemy has 
left Fort Edward. We intend to start for Albany, 
and to-morrow will send officers to Canada to hasten 
forward all of our recruits and other things that we 
left behind in that Province. 

* It was while Burgoyne was at Fort Anne that the Jane 
McCrea tragedy occurred a tragedy which in no way seems 
to belong to the dim past, when it is stated that Robert 
Ayers, the messenger sent to Jane by her lover, David Jones, 
was the father-in-law of the late Ransom Cook of Saratoga 
Springs. Mrs. Cook, who (1891) is still living, is the aunt of 
Mr. Nelson Millerd of New York City. 





FORT EDWARD, Aug. 7, 1777. 

The heat in this vicinity is uncommonly severe, 
and exceeds that of the warmest summer day in our 
own country. Almost daily we are visited by thunder 
storms which, while being terrific, pass away very 
quickly and do not last as long as with us at home. 
They do not, however, cool the atmosphere after they 
are over ; and in the night more especially toward 
morning there is such a heavy fall of due and mist, 
that it penetrates through our tents into our blankets 
even, causing them to become soaking wet. 

On Aug. Qth Brigadier Fraser marched with his 

* Diiers House. Built by, and the residence of, Judge 
Wm. Duer. He bought this property (at Ft. Miller,) from 
Gen. Ph. Schuyler. He married a daughter of Gen. Wm. 
Alexander, known as Lord Stirling in the Revolution. He 
was a delegate to the Continental Congress in 1777, and died 
in New York, May 7, 1799. 


Letter from Duers House. 97 

corps and the Indians toward Fort Miller. He, in 
turn, was followed by Colonel Baum with a separate 
corps, consisting of a regiment of dragoons and bodies 
of Indians, Canadian provincials, etc., and also several 
other detachments belonging to the brigades of 
Brigadiers Fraser and Specht, and the corps of Colonel 
Breymann. Colonel Baum took with him two English 
six-pounders under the command of Lieutenant Bach. 
Colonel Baum s object in making this march was to 
make a foray with 521 men into the now thickly settled 
districts of New Hampshire and the other old English 
provinces or so-called townships. It was hoped that by 
this movement our labors in obtaining provisions 
would not only be lightened, but, by collecting to 
gether the cattle remaining in the deserted homesteads 
of the rebels, and by buying the same from friendly 
farmers, we would have a fresh supply of provisions. 
At the same time, we expected to obtain horses and 
draught cattle, by means of which our army could ad 
vance with greater celerity. This, too, was the more 
desirable when it is remembered that our march had 
more than once been retarded by the arduous efforts 
of our soldiers trying to obtain even the smallest 
necessaries of life. In order to make this state of 
things clear to you, I would have to write pages. If, 
however, it be taken into consideration that the army, 
in these parts, eat bread composed of flour which has 
been prepared in England, also meat which has been 
salted in the same country, and that, before it can be 
put into pots and thence into our mouths, it has to be 

98 Letter from Duers House. 

transported by men (because horses and carts are 
scarce in this country) over oceans, wide streams, 
large tracts of land, waterfalls, etc., it can readily be 
seen that to devise means to obtain these necessaries 
for the army is an undertaking of great responsibility 
for a commander-in-chief ; more especially, also, is 
this the case if the commander-in-chief has to execute 
all these things in the face of an enemy an enemy 
who must at once be driven, if possible, from any 
commanding position he may occupy, so as not to 
leave him to devastate his own lands to our detriment. 
Colonel Baum was accompanied by two English officers 
belonging to General Riedesel s suite, and also by Gov 
ernor Skeene, who represented the commander-in- 
chief.* These three were to regulate all matters per 
taining to the necessaries which we expected to find, 
in such a manner that no hue and cry could be raised 
by the Americans regarding atrocities. 

On the i ith of August, a musketeer from Cologne, 
named Fasselabend, was placed in front of Riedesel s 
regiment and shot by the pickets belonging to the 
army. He had deserted, gone over to the enemy, and 
accepted their pay, but had been recaptured by us. 

Aug. \2th : Brigadier Fraser is stationed on the 
Hudson River opposite Saratoga. General Arnold, 
of the enemy s forces, is at Still water. 

* That is, Burgoyne : and it would have been greatly to 
the advantage of that general had he had nothing to do 
with General Skeene. See " Burgoyne s Campaign " and 
" Ramsay s Revolutionary War." 

Letter from Duers House. 99 

Aitg. \$t/i: Colonel Breymann and his grenadiers, 
together with a battalion of riflemen (yagers), broke 
camp and started on a march for Fort Miller. Colonel 
Baum has begun his march toward the neighborhood 
of Bennington. 

Aug. i^th: The army to-day marched seven Eng 
lish miles down the Hudson, and encamped at Fort 
Miller. Rhetz s regiment marched from Jones s House 
toward Fort Edward ; and the Hessian-Hanau Regi 
ment from Fort Anne to Jones s House thus occupy 
ing our old quarters. Brigadier Fraser has crossed 
the Hudson and now lies at Saratoga. Colonel Brey 
mann, on the other hand, still remains on this side of 
the river opposite Saratoga. It was terribly warm to 
day, and many of the men ran the risk of being suffo 
cated while on the march. Fort Miller is situated on 
the other side of the Hudson [i.e. left bank] and is 
entirely in ruins. It never, indeed, consisted of more 
than a block-house and a magazine surrounded by 
palisades. The army is now encamped at DUAR S 
HOUSE. Mr. Duar [Duer] is a member of the rebel 
Congress and also commissary of the army. His 
country-seat here is built of wood, but is large and 
tastefully arranged. It is the first real country-seat 
that I have seen since my departure from Portsmouth. 

Aug. \^th : Colonel Breymann was obliged to 
march to the assistance of Colonel Baum, twenty-five 
English miles distant. He took with him two Eng 
lish 6 pounders, under the command of the Hesse- 
Hanau, Lieutenant Spangenberg. Colonel Breymann 

ioo Letter from Duers House. 

left his camp in the same condition as the dragoon 
regiment, which left its tents, baggage and standards 

Aug. \6th : A bridge was thrown across the Hud 
son, and the army received orders to proceed on their 
march [to Albany] the following morning. 

Aug. ijtk: During the night, or rather toward 
daybreak, Capt. M. de Lanaudiere, who had left us 
with Baum s corps, arrived with the news that Baum s 
corps had surrendered at discretion to the enemy, at 
St. Coick s Mill, not, however, without a desperate re 
sistance, nor until all their powder had been shot away. 
Yesterday afternoon, and before Colonel Breymann 
could come to their assistance, the enemy, who was 
estimated at about 4000 men, attacked Baum s corps 
on all sides. Baum had intrenched himself with 
his regulars on an elevation, as well as time and cir 
cumstances would permit. These troops consisted 
of his dragoon regiment, not more than 150 men 
strong, and the infantry detachments that had been 
sent along with him. He was thoroughly convinced 
(mark you) that Colonel Breymann was marching to 
his assistance, and he, therefore, resolved to hold his 
position that he might not loose any of his cattle, 
horses and flour the great objects for which he had 
been sent by Burgoyne on this foray and which he 
had already accumulated before the battle. The 
country people of the neighborhood not only had ac 
cepted the proclamation of General Burgoyne, but had 
gone in crowds to Governor Skene, and taken the oath 

Letter from Duers House. 101 

of loyalty to the king. But these same disloyal people, 
who had just taken the oath of allegiance, soon after 
ward attacked the corps of Baum as the bitterest of 
foes. Meanwhile, a strong detachment of the enemy s 
regulars from Stillwater had incited the inhabitants 
within a radius of twenty-four English miles and more, 
to arm without exception. These suddenly came out 
of the woods from all sides. The Indians, Canadians, 
and Provincials were dispersed, and Colonel Baum 
attacked with fury on all sides. Eye-witnesses have 
asserted that the rebels on this occasion fought with 
desperation, advancing to within eight paces of cannon 
loaded with slugs, so that they might more easily 
shoot down the artillerymen. The defence of Col 
onel Baum was equal, apparently, to such an attack ; 
for three times the enemy were forced to retreat 
before his fire. At. last, however, the cartridges were 
exhausted, and Baum s two cannon silent from lack 
of powder. At this vital moment, the enemy threw 
themselves fiercely upon our men ; and Baum and 
his dragoons, sword in hand, and the infantry with 
their bayonets, endeavored to hew a path through 
the enemy s lines into the woods. But, alas ! at this 
point the narrative ceases ; and up to the present 
moment we are still uncertain as to the fate of our 
brave brothers. Many are perhaps dead ; still more 
wounded ; and the rest are in the hands of the enemy. 
The commanders of the above-mentioned light 
troops belonging to Baum s corps, have all saved 
themselves with the exception of a certain Lieutenant 

IO2 Letter from Duers House. 

Sallans of the Qth English regiment, and a Swede 
by birth, who is dead. One hundred and twenty-seven 
men belonging to the infantry of the German regi 
ments are missing, and their fate is uncertain. We ex 
pect, within a short time, to hear more accurate 
details ; and many are, without doubt, still living. 
Counting the well and sick dragoons, and also the re 
cruits from this regiment, over eighty men are still fit 
for duty. 

Through this same bearer of evil news, M. de Lanau- 
diere, we have also learned that, soon after the first 
unlucky affair, Colonel Breymann also became en 
gaged in a heated affray with the enemy ; but as to the 
termination of which he can tell us nothing. As one 
verified dispatch after another reached us, to the effect 
that Colonel Breymann was retreating safely, the 
army remained encamped on the river Battenkill.* 
Burgoyne and the 47th Regiment, however, waded 
through the river, and marched to meet Breymann. 
Toward 4 o clock Breymann s corps arrived in the 
camp, greatly fatigued by the engagement, the heat of 
the day, and their forced marches. It appears that 
yesterday afternoon, about 4 o clock, Breymann ar 
rived at St. Coick s Mill, and saw the enemy stationed 
upon an eminence. He was not then aware that any 
thing serious had happened to Baum s corps. He 
had, however, learned from a dragoon on horseback, 

* This is not a river, but merely a large stream, which 
empties into the Hudson, almost opposite the present 
" Marshall House," the place described by Mrs. Riedesel. 

Letter from Duers House. 103 

that Baum was in great danger.* Accordingly, with 
his two battalions, he lost no time in advancing rapidly 
upon the enemy ; attacked furiously ; dislodged them 
successively from three different eminences in the 
woods, and forced them to retreat to a distance of a 
mile. However, the numerical superiority of the enemy, 
together with constant reinforcements from the neigh 
boring villages, and finally the scarcity of powder and 
ball, obliged his seemingly victorious corps to retreat. 
This was made in safety. The cannon, however, ow 
ing to all the horses having been killed, were left be 
hind. From the fact that this engagement took place 
in a dense woods, with thick underbrush, we at present 
do not know our actual losses. Many of our wounded 
were of necessity left behind. One captain, one lieu 
tenant, and fourteen men are dead. This we know to 
be a certainty. Lying wounded in the hospitals, 
are one major, two captains, one lieutenant of the 
Rifles, one lieutenant of the Artillery, and sixty- 
three men. The wounded are in a tolerable condition 
and most of them will again be fit for service. The 
fate of five officers and one hundred and thirty-five 
men who are missing is unknown. Colonel Breymann, 
whose coat was pierced by five bullets, received a flesh 
wound upon his left leg, notwithstanding which he 
remained with his corps. This evening he again took 
possession of his old quarters, and the army re-occu- 

* This statement is rather singular when it is remembered 
(see " Burgoyne s Campaign") that Breymann had been sent 
to the rescue of Baum by Burgoyne. 

IO4 Letter from Duers Ho^lse. 

pied their old camp. Eraser s corps, however, took 
up a position on the Battenkill river. 

A^lg. \%th : General Riedesel advanced with the 
47th Regiment to Jones s House, and the regiment of 
Rhetz and Hesse-Hanau, with a train of artillery, 
did the same. This movement was made for the pur 
pose of covering Fort George, whence, at very great 
inconvenience, we have to bring all our provisions 
and other necessary articles for the army. This has 
kept us busy up to the present time, during which we 
have remained in peaceful possession of our quarters. 
Many Albanians have come to us, and very soon we 
will have an entire regiment of Provincials. Over 
five hundred horses have also arrived from Canada. 
Colonel St. Leger has captured Fort Stanwix on the 
Mohoc [Mohawk] River,* and will soon join his forces 
to ours, and advance upon the enemy. Lord Corn- 
wallis, also, is on the march with a corps of Howe s 
army, and both armies [Burgoyne s and Howe s] will 
strive to effect a junction. The unfortunate occur 
rences at St. Coick s Mills have not dampened our ardor. 
We regret nothing except the loss of brave friends 
and men. This small piece of good luck has cost the 
enemy dear, and they have learned to know the worth 
of their foe. They did not dare to follow Colonel 
Breymann more than a quarter of a mile. The gren 
adier companies of Rhetz and Specht must have been 

* Of course a mistake. On the contrary, St. Leger had to 
beat a hasty and ignominious retreat. 

Letter from Duers House. 105 

in the thickest of the fray during the retreat, since 
they have the largest number of officers and men 
missing. To fight in desolate forests and thick under 
brush is ticklish work ; and one company in advance 
of another, can easily become fortunate or unfor 

Aug. 2*]th: A deserter from the Qth English Regi 
ment was shot before the whole camp. It is true 
that deserters are treated with great severity ; but it is 
also true that up to the present time there has never 
been an army in which desertions have been so scarce. 
You must also bear in mind that the enemy, through 
its emissaries who are partly of English and partly of 
German extraction is trying, by every means in its 
power, to induce our soldiers to desert. 

But, dear friend, when shall you hear again from 
me, and when shall I again receive news from you ? 
Mother Canada has given her children their dowries, 
and from her we need expect nothing more. We 
must get our living by the strength of our arms, and 
with them hew a path which will lead us to it either 
in the neighborhood of our friends or enemies, or 
have it brought to us across oceans and seas from 
Europe. Such will probably be the case with our 
correspondence. So do not be astonished if a long 
time elapses ere you again receive a letter from me. 
May the winds soon waft joyful tidings to you over 
the sea ; and by the same means may they convey 
good news to me of your continued prosperity and 
your faithful remembrance of your friend. 

LAND, NOV. 15, 1777, TO OCT. 10, 1778.* 

CAMBRIDGE, MASS., Nov. 15, 1777. 

My Dear Friends : 

At last we have arrived at Cambridge, where we 
poor unfortunates can claim neither to be free nor 
captives. If I were to write and tell you that every 
thing is as it should be here I would be stating a base 
falsehood. However, if I wished to excite your 
sympathy to the highest pitch by my complaints, I 
fear I should afterward regret the tears I should cause 
to flow. The Americans, who, for politeness sake, 
are no longer termed Rebels or Yankees, are very 
often unable to determine to which class of people in 

* As is well known, Burgoyne s defeat at Saratoga 
changed the whole complection of affairs for the colonists. 
This great event is here described even to the most minute 
details by an eye-witness, who has the great faculty of mak 
ing the reader imagine himself an eye-witness of these stir 
ring events. Note by Schlozer. 


Letter from New England. 107 

their state we properly belong. 55 It is true that we 
are somewhat confined. As a matter of fact, we are 
allowed a well defined circle, the bounds of which we 
are not to overstep under penalty of being sent to 
the prison-ship or shot. We, however, make the 
most of the little liberty we possess in our villages of 
palisades, and now and then play the gentleman 
among our conquerers. 

You are doubtless very anxious to know exactly 
how we arrived at the High School of Cambridge 
where the students live in the well-built Collegia Har- 
vardino ; attend college in comical-looking dressing- 
gowns, and are summoned three times daily to break 
fast, dinner, and supper, by the sound of a bell. Paper 
and ink, however, are too dear in this place, to go 
into minute details of occurrences from the ist of Sep 
tember up to the present time. I will, however, do 
the best I can. Speaking confidentially, I cannot tell 
you how it was that we got here and into this predica 
ment, for it is a subject that has caused much think 
ing, speaking, and writing, and will, doubtless, cause 
much more of the same. But you may take my word 
of honor for it, and rest assured that it was neither 
the fault of the army nor its behavior ; and, further, 
that, notwithstanding the reverses, we are still able to 
meet the gaze of our still more successful comrades 

* The writer s meaning is not quite clear. Perhaps his 
idea is that they are unable to classify the prisoners accord 
ing to their social position. 

io8 Letter from New England, 

with courage and confidence. For a similar reason 
the army cannot accuse its commander-in-chief. On 
the contrary, it believes that he will eventually right 
himself before his king, his country, and the rest of the 
world. Perhaps the story of our march over seas, 
rivers and mountains, and through forests and wilder 
nesses will cause our successors either to forego it, or 
to make other preparations before undertaking the 
same journey. For the latter purpose, our experi 
ences can furnish a small practical text-book. 

My last letter to you ended with a description of 
the unfortunate affair at Bennington, and since then 
we have been unable to send even a line to Europe. 
Notwithstanding that we have the wide ocean, which 
furnishes us with oysters, shell and other fish, close at 
hand, and notwithstanding, also, that this same ocean 
still affords us the means of communication, I am un 
able to know whether this letter, which I have written 
to my friends on the Ocker, will reach them. If I had 
had my say when the articles of capitulation were drawn 
up, I would have seen to it that the safe forwarding 
of letters was embodied in a 1 4th article. The wise 
acres, however, have only put into the Convention 
treaty thirteen articles one it would appear for each 
Province.* Since last April my eyes have read no 
letter of yours. The wine which you so kindly sent 
me from Lower Saxony, actually got as far as Caril- 

* As our writer says, The Convention treaty consisted 
only of thirteen articles. 

Letter from New England. 109 

Ion, on Lake Champlain, but it could not be trans 
ported over the wretched thirty-six miles from that 
post to Fort George at which place, had it come, we 
would gladly have unloaded it, notwithstanding the 
terrible heat of the weather ; and so I was forced to 
forego the pleasure of drinking it. 

In the affair at Bennington those actually killed were 
Colonel Baum, Reineking, master of the horse ; Cap 
tain von Schieck, Lieutenant Muhlenfeldt, and Hager- 
mann, color-bearer. Lieutenant d Annieres, Jun., died 
of dysentry a few days afterward in captivity. Lieu 
tenants Breva and Gebhard are severely wounded and 
prisoners. Cornet Stretzer, Color-bearer Specht, and 
Chaplain Melsheimer* are slightly wounded and pris 
oners. Major von Earner and Lieutenant Hannemann 
managed to escape, but were so severely wounded that 
they had to be brought back to Canada. Colonel Brey- 
mann and Captains von Geusau and Von Gleissenberg 
were wounded the latter severely. Those who man 
aged to escape without wounds but were captured, are 
Major von Meiborn, captain of horse, Von Schlagen- 
teufle, Jun., Captains von Bartling, Sen., Dommes and 
O Conell, Lieutenants von Reckrodt, Von Bothmar, 
Meyer and Burghoff, and the cornets and color-bearers 
Graff, Schonewald and Andra. Those officers are in 
the vicinity of Westminster [Vermont], and are divided 
up among the various farm-houses. 

* Chaplain Melsheimer afterward deserted to the Ameri 
cans. I have his journal, a very rare work, which I have 
recently translated for the Quebec Historical Society. 

1 10 Letter from New England. 

This affair was to us a severe blow. It caused us 
to halt in the midst of a successful march. The maga 
zine at Bennington escaped our outstretched hands ; 
and we were therefore again obliged to fall back upon 
our stores of flour and salt meat stored at Fort George. 
Meanwhile our army remained encamped at Duar s 
House, and Major-General von Riedesel was forced 
to take up his position with a corps at " Jones s 
House." All our regiments were now engaged, 
though without interruption, in the difficult task of 
bringing up the necessaries for the remainder of the 
campaign in boats. It was, moreover, very laborious 
work to get around the rapids between Fort George 
and Saratoga by the carrying-places, on account of 
the scarcity of carts and horses. My dear sirs, only 
think of it ! It was August, the hottest time of the 
year, when, although sitting quietly in our tents, we 
could hardly draw breath. The dysentery was also 
causing fearful havoc among us ; and notwithstanding 
it all, we were obliged to work like beavers, since the 
very life of our army depended on our doing so. In 
deed, I really believe that in honor of our misfortunes 
a stone will hereafter be erected between Ticonderoga 
and Albany, with this inscription: Vestigia me terrent! 

Enough time was gained by the enemy by their 
lucky coup at Bennington to allow three brigades to 
join them, General Gates, the favorite of the New 
Englanders, assuming the command.* The farmers left 

* The reason why Gates that malicious and cowardly in 
triguer was at this time the favorite of the New Englanders, 

Letter from New England. 1 1 1 

their ploughs, the blacksmiths their anvils, the shoe 
makers, tailors, etc., their several vocations, and came 
as volunteers ; while from all the provinces of New 
England regiments of militia came swarming in to 
join the forces under General Gates. Thus within 
fourteen days the force of the enemy was augmented 
to 14,000 men. Meanwhile General Arnold was sent 
against Colonel St. Leger, who was on the point of 
capturing Fort Stanwix on the Mohawk River. The 
rumor that our entire army had been defeated at Ben- 
nington had already travelled in advance of Arnold ;* 
and this, in connection with the fact that St. Leger 
found his position none too favorable, caused him to 
raise the siege and return to Osvvego. 

General Burgoyne now resolved to concentrate his 
army and give battle to the enemy, who had already 
advanced from Stillwater. This determination gave 
great satisfaction and enthusiasm in the army. All 
articles that could be dispensed with were sent back to 
Diamond Island in Lake George. It is for this reason 
that I am now wearing a ragged coat and most pitia 
ble-looking shirts. However, the same state of things 
exists with all of us. 

was because he had, with a view of supplanting Schuyler of 
New York, lost no opportunity of offensively declaring that 
the Government of New York was entirely wrong in the 
matter of the New Hampshire Grants. See Fiske s "Amer 
ican Revolution," where this fact is fully brought out. 
* A new fact. 

1 1 2 Letter from New England. 

On the nth of September our entire army made a 
still further advance against the enemy. 

On the I3th, I4th, and i5th we crossed the Hud 
son on a bridge of boats the enemy meanwhile 
falling back upon Stillwater. And now we had again 
a repetition of salt meat and flour for our diet. My 
dear friends, do not despise these royal victuals, the 
cost of the transportation of which from England 
must have been a right royal sum. Pork at noon, 
pork at evening, pork cold, and pork warm ! Friends, 
you who at home are able to dine upon green peas and 
shell-fish, might have looked down upon our pork 
with disdain ; for us, however, pork was a kingly viand, 
without which we would have starved. In fact, if we 
had had pork enough we would not now be here in 
Boston.* Our hospital was forced to follow us, 
otherwise the enemy would have captured it. All 
communication with Lake George and Carillon, 
and consequently with Canada, now ceased. 

On the 1 5th of September we took up a position 
at Dovogat s House ; regaled ourselves once more with 
excellent vegetables, and slept upon straw, large 
heaps of which were to be found in the neighboring 
fields. That it had not been threshed did not ma 
terially affect our comfort. This good fortune was 
the first of the kind we had experienced in America, 
and we appreciated it. 

* That is, if the supplies even of pork had not given out, 
Burgoyne would not have surrendered. 

Letter from New England. 1 1 3 

On the 1 6th, several regiments started upon a recon 
noitring expedition, and also to repair ruined bridges 
and roads ; and on the i7th, we advanced two and a 
half English miles to Soarts [Swords ] House.* 

On the i8th, the enemy seemed inclined to dispute 
our right to repair a number of bridges ; and finally we 
were obliged to send out entire regiments to cover our 

On September iQth, both armies encountered each 
other in a swamp. The neighborhood, which consist 
ed of wooded knolls, ravines, morasses, etc., was the 
cause of amazing mistakes on both sides. On account 
of these obstacles the several columns of our army pre 
sented to the enemy a front of the width of two and 
one half English miles. The left wing, consisting of the 
German regiments, all the heavy artillery, and the 47th 
English Regiment, under the command of Major-Gen 
eral von Riedesel, had no hand in the first engage 
ment, because they were marching along the river flats. 
Our grenadiers and light-infantry battalion, which to- 

* A son of the Swords who built this house was for many 
years a respected bookseller in New York City. There is 
a tablet now in existence in Trinity Church, New York, in 
the alcove of the Astor Memorial, south side, and which was 
erected by Trinity Church corporation, bearing this inscrip 
tion : " In Memory of | Thomas Swords who was for fifty 
years an eminent | Publisher and Bookseller in this city | and 
for twenty-five years a vestry | man of this Church | Born in 
| Fort George, Saratoga Co., N. Y., | January 5, 1764. 

Died in this city | June 27, 1843." 

ii4 Letter from New England. 

getherwith Eraser s corps formed the right wing, took 
part in the conflict. Colonel Breymann, in particular, 
had the honor to strike the enemy s flank, which had 
hemmed in the 24th English Regiment, with such force 
that they speedily withdrew. Colonel Breymann, who 
by this movement had again established communica 
tion between Eraser s corps and the rest of the army, 
gained special laurels. His battalion also lost but few 
either in killed or wounded. Towards three o clock in 
the afternoon, our centre, consisting of the Qth, 2Oth, 
2ist, and 62d English regiments, under the command 
of Brigadier Hamilton, became fiercely engaged with 
the enemy. The firing still continuing, Captain of 
Artillery, Johnson, supported the English brigade with 
a brigade of artillery ; and, at the same moment, that 
old veteran, Major Williams, with many groans and 
curses, also brought up several of his " thunderers" from 
over the hills. The enemy, on the other hand, brought 
up fresh brigades one after another. Hamilton s bri 
gade maintained itself bravely ; and notwithstanding 
it had been forced several times to retreat, it again 
advanced and victoriously occupied its former posi 
tion. Finally, General Burgoyne sent word to Gen 
eral von Riedesel, on the river bank, to send as 
many troops as he could spare from the left wing to 
the assistance of Hamilton s brigade. Thereupon 
General Riedesel, turning over the command of the 
left wing to Brigadier Specht, and leaving the latter to 
oppose the already advancing front of the enemy, took 
with him two companies of Rhetz s regiment under 

Letter from New England. \ 15 

command of Captain Fredersdorf, and two 6-pounders 
under the command of Captain Pausch of the Hesse- 
Hanan artillery, and hastened to the relief of Bur- 
goyne. He reached Hamilton s brigade when it was 
in its last struggles and upon the point of retreating. 
He at once fell upon the enemy s flank with great 
success, Captain Pausch at the same time raking them 
with a murderous fire of grape. The result was, that 
the English regiments, being thus infused with fresh 
courage, re-formed themselves, and with loud hurrahs 
threw, themselves furiously upon the enemy. The 
latter fled and left us in possession of the battle-field, 
acknowledged victors. The sun soon afterward went 
down, and night hid the flying enemy from our 

The action of to-day has caused the house of a poor 
farmer to become famous ; for it has given to this day s 
engagement the name of the " Battle of Freeman s 
House." f None of the officers belonging to our Ger- 

* When it is stated that Riedesel, Pausch, the writer of 
this letter, and other reliable eye-witnesses all concur in say 
ing that the Germans saved the fortunes of this day, it seems 
almost incredible that Burgoyne, neither in his despatches nor 
subsequently in his explanations before Parliament, should 
scarcely have mentioned Riedesel and his help. If it sprung 
from petty jealousy, it was unworthy of Burgoyne, who, 
whatever his failings as a military man, bore a character for 

f Afterwards known as the " Battle of Freeman s Farm." 
Connected with this Freeman s farm is a rather curious in 
cident. A Michael Condon, who died this year (1891), was 

1 1 6 Letter from New England. 

man corps was killed or wounded, and of its men 
only eighteen were either wounded or killed. The 62d 
English regiment, however, suffered severely ; for out 
of 300 of its men who went into the action, three 
officers, one under-officer, and forty-nine privates were 
killed, and eight officers, nine under-officers, and 
ninety-two men wounded. Ten of the English officers 
were killed, among whom were the brave Captain of 
Artillery, Johnson, and Captain Monnin of the Cana 
dian Volunteers, whose eleven-year son had fought by 
his side.* Our poor wounded were brought down to 

in his youth a day-laborer on this farm. He had been set 
to work digging ; and when, at noon, the owner of the place 
came along, he found a post-hole dug in the ground, in 
which there were yet one or two gold pieces scattered 
around. These, as the owner of the farm, he claimed and 
took. A year afterward Condon bought and paid for a very 
expensive farm in the vicinity, which is known to this day as 
" The Battle Farm ;" and while no one could say positively 
that it was bought with gold that he had secreted, yet none 
doubted the fact. Burgoyne s treasure-chest, if the gold 
came from that, was therefore of some benefit ! 

* In this connection it will be of interest to mention that 
probably the last survivor of this action was Colonel George 
Williams, a nephew of Major Griffith Williams (mentioned 
in the text) who commanded on this occasion Burgoyne s 
artillery. He was a cadet at the time (see General Rogers 
in Haddens Journal for the duties and pay of cadets, p. 156), 
and was but twelve years of age but one year older than 
Captain Monnin s son. This youngster is said to have carried 
the flag of truce into the American lines on the capitula 
tion of Burgoyne. At the end of the American War he 

Letter from New England. 1 1 7 

the low ground on the river-bank. No houses were 
near at hand to carry them into, nor did we have help 
enough to tie up their wounds.* There was no help 
for it, therefore, but for them to remain in the open 
air during the entire night (which had become bitterly 
cold and freezing) until the next day, when tents were 
put up for their use. This experience constitutes a 
truly American evil, for which there appears to be no 

On the 2oth of September we took up a position as 
near as possible to the enemy s intrenchments, in which 
they had now ensconced themselves, being separated 
from them by forests and ravines. 

On the 2ist, the enemy decidedly objected to our 
hewing paths through the forest to our advanced out- 
joined H. M. 2Oth Regiment, and served with it for twenty- 
three years in Jamaica, St. Domingo, and Holland, and also 
on the staff of General Crampagne in Ireland during the 
French invasion of 1798. He represented Aston in the 
first reformed Parliament, and died at Little Woolton, near 
Liverpool, in 1850, at the age of 88. See " Forty Years in 
Ceylon." By the late Thomas Skinner. London^ Allen 
& Co. 1891." I am indebted to my warm friend John J. 
Dalgleish of Edinburgh, Scotland, whose grandfather served 
under Burgoyne, for bringing these facts to rny notice. 

* The writer is hardly correct here. There were two 
small log-houses, and one frame one of two rooms, in the 
latter of which General Fraser died. See my translation 
of Madame Riedesel s letters. 

f The writer means, I suppose, that no way had yet been 
found to supply hospital facilities. 

u8 Letter from New England. 

posts. This gave rise to several skirmishes, which, 
however, did not amount to much. From this time 
on we turned out every morning an hour before day 
break to enjoy the morning air, which was composed 
partly of hoar-frost, and partly of a mist so dense that 
you could in very truth grasp it with your outstretched 
hands. Nor did it entirely disappear before nine o clock 
in the forenoon. During the day it was hot enough 
to melt one. We intrenched our quarters, placed all 
our guards and pickets in a circle around our camp, 
and protected them by means of redoubts and batteries. 
In the rear of our camp we also placed two large re 
doubts for the protection of our magazines, trains, and 
hospitals.* In a word, our encampment was a copy 
of that at Croffdorff in 1759. Then we cut down 
several thousand trees, not only to give our cannon 
more play-room, but also to increase the efficiency of 
their range. Soon we began to feel the scarcity of 
many articles. We could not obtain anything from 
Carillon, nor in this wilderness could anything be 
had ; while, to make matters still worse, the enemy 
had cut off all means of communication with Albany. 
One bottle of poor red wine cost 2 reich-thaler and 8 
groschen of our money [$1.58], and a pound of sugar 
or coffee was worth one reich-thaler and 22 groschen 

* These two redoubts on two high elevations by the river- 
bank (in one of which Eraser was buried) are to be seen in 
the picture taken (torn Anbury, much reduced in Lossing s 
"Field-Book of the American Revolution" and in my " Bur- 
goyne s Campaign." 

Letter from New England. 1 19 

[97 cts.]. Clothes were not to be thought of, for 
they were daily torn into shreds in this wilderness. 
At no time did the Jews await the coming of their 
Messiah with greater expectancy than we awaited the 
coming of General Clinton. This officer General Howe 
was supposed to have sent us for the purpose of dis 
persing the rebels in our front and rear. Flying 
rumors from time to time reached our camp in regard 
to his army ; and although they continually filled us 
with renewed hope, they proved, alas ! to be nothing 
but rumors. The enemy, meanwhile, had sent an 
expedition against Carillon under the command of 
General Lincoln, which surprised and captured four 
companies of the 53d Regiment. Lincoln, however, 
was driven back from Carillon and Diamond Island 
with great loss, so that he was defeated in optima 
forma. Our provisions continued to decrease ; the 
soldiers were reduced half a pound of bread and the 
same quantity of meat per day a state of things which 
they endured with patience. Meanwhile, although the 
enemy had it in their power to attack us with four 
times as many men as we had, they showed no inclina 
tion to do so. To retreat seemed too hard lines for Gen 
eral Burgoyne. I n Albany we had plenty of friends will 
ing to reinforce us ; and for this reason the General 
resolved to attack the enemy and endeavor to force 
his way through their lines. We could only attack the 
enemy on their flank ; and in order to hew a way for 
our columns and artillery, and at the same time re 
connoitre their position, an expedition of 1500 men 

I2O Letter from New England. 

under command of the several leaders of the army, 
with a number of heavy cannon, was undertaken on 
the 7th of October. 

Generals Burgoyne, Phillips, and Riedesel, and Brig 
adier Fraser, accompanied the expedition, and all 
the different regiments of the army contributed their 
quota. The brigadiers and those troops that remained 
in the rear retired behind the fortifications of the camp 
in order to be in a position to defend themselves as 
strcmgly as possible should the enemy take a notion to 
attack them. Toward three o clock in the afternoon 
the enemy were driven from several positions, and the 
corps marched up to Weisser s House.* The enemy 
meanwhile remained quiet, being hidden from view by 
woods. General Burgoyne was on the point of con 
tinuing the reconnoissance, when suddenly, about four 
o clock in the afternoon, the enemy threw themselves 
upon the English grenadiers who composed the left 
wing, attacked them in front and in flank, and 
forced them after a stubborn resistance to give way. 

* This does not describe the state of affairs exactly. From 
this sentence it might be inferred that the main body of the 
enemy " were driven," etc.; whereas, if any were forced to re 
tire, it was only a few pickets. The entire army of Gates 
remained in their intrenchments until the attack on Bur 
goyne was determined on. Pausch, in his Journal, speaks of 
coming up to this house and finding it deserted it having 
been occupied, probably, as an outpost by a few American 
pickets. In connection with this, the reader is referred to 
"Stone s Map of the Battle-ground " in that Jo urnal. 

Letter from New England. 121 

At the right wing, where the regiments under English 
commanders were placed, the same thing happened ; 
and simultaneously the centre, under Colonel von 
Specht, and whose flanks were no longer covered, was 
also attacked. The centre stood its ground for a long 
time ; but as the enemy s regiments kept pouring in 
from all sides, nothing was left to it but to retreat. A 
more galling discharge of musketry could not be 
imagined. Captain Pausch of the Hesse-Hanau 
artillery afterward described to me with what frenzy 
the enemy threw themselves upon his cannon, in the 
very teeth of a murderous fire of grape. Although 
Captain Pausch s desperate courage in such affairs is 
well known, yet he does not wish on that account that 
his Narrative" should be taken as an excuse for the 
loss of his two i2-pounders. Old Major Williams, 
who can only be likened to an old 12-pounder himself, 
and who adores no creature on earth more than a 12- 
pounder, and none, by the way, can handle one better 
than him, also met with Captain Pausch s fate ; with 
this difference, however, that he was captured along 
with his beloved 1 2-pounders.* The old warrior is said 
to have shed tears upon this occasion. The result of 
to-day s unfortunate engagement was that nearly all 
of our cannon were captured, and the entire detach 
ment had to seek safety in flight. The beaten corps 
took refuge within the large intrenchment [the 

* It was one of these same twelve-pounders on which Col. 
Cilley was a-straddle and exulting in its capture as described 
by Wilkinson. 

122 Letter from New England. 

" Great Redoubt"] of Eraser s division, and although 
the enemy attempted to scale and enter it, they were 
met with such a determined resistance that all their 
efforts proved vain. 

We were, however, to meet with another misfortune. 
Bellona seems to have heen with the Yankees to-day, 
and Mars must either have been in a bad humor or 
have placed too much confidence in old Williams and 
his i2-pounders. The corps of Fraser and Breymann 
were separated by a ravine, and both were stationed 
upon two separate knolls. The low ground between 
these elevations, and on which Freeman s house lay, 
was occupied by Canadians and Provincials. Colonel 
Breymann s corps covered the entire right of the 
army, and therefore stood en potence. The Provincial 
and the Canadian corps had given their quota to the 
reconnoissance of the morning; and the grenadiers and 
rifle battalion had, moreover, become greatly weakened 
by the affair at Bennington. This entire division there 
fore mustered scarcely two hundred men. The de 
feated corps, likewise, instead of throwing a portion of 
its men into Breymann s intrenchment, threw them 
all into Eraser s.* Colonel Breymann was attacked 
in front, and defended himself bravely. 

The enemy, however, overpowered the posts in the 
depressed ground between the two knolls, and then 
threw themselves from the side and rear upon Brey 

* Still, if the defeated corps had divided up its strength, 
Eraser s " Great Redoubt" would probably have been taken 
thus making the general result of the day the same. 

Letter from New England. 123 

mann s intrenchments. Breymann fell dead as he 
stood near two cannon. His corps became dispersed, 
the greater part of them, however, retreating into the 
forest, and afterwards effecting a junction with Fraser s 
division. The enemy captured several cannon, set 
the tents on fire, and plundered the camp. Colonel 
Breymann, as before mentioned, and several other 
officers of the German corps, were killed. My esteemed 
old friend Captain Fredersdorff died some time after 
wards from his wounds, and Lieutenant and Adjutant 
Bode met with the same fate. Captain von Dahlstjerna 
received a dangerous shot through his right leg, caus 
ing both arteries to be ruptured. He is lying at 
Albany, and it is to be hoped that his recovery will be 
speedy.* Captain von Gleissenberg was also danger 
ously wounded in the stomach ;f and Lieutenants von 
Meyer from Nuremberg and Cruse of the Yagers [rifle 
men] only slightly. Ensign von Geyling, of the Hesse- 
Hanau Regiment, is killed ; and Colonel von Specht, 
Captain von Geisnau, and Ensigns Haberlin, Denicke, 
and Count von RantzauJ are captured. In the death 
of the brave Brigadier Eraser, who died from his 
wounds the day after the battle, the army has sustained 

* Bernhard Rich. Dahlstirna. He, as well as Captain 
Fredersdorff, died of his wounds the following year at 
Albany, so that the writer s kind wish was not gratified. 

f Gottlief Joachim Gleissenberg. He died February 20, 
1801, as Colonel commanding at Wolfenbiittel. 

Ensign Count von Rantzau, Ernest August, was 
drowned in the Schuylkill while in captivity. 

124 Letter from New England. 

a great loss. Sir Francis Clarke [Clerke], Captain 
and First Adjutant of General Burgoyne, and who only 
a few years since studied in Gottingen, is also killed. 
Major Acland is likewise wounded, and a prisoner. 
His wife, a born " my lady," who shared his tent with 
him throughout the entire campaign, is his true and 
faithful companion in captivity. Both these persons, 
whose parents are still living, are already in possession 
of a yearly income of ^20,000 sterling. Aide-Major 
Bloomfield of the artillery, and Captain Green, 
Brigade-Major of General Phillip s division, are 
wounded. Furthermore, several other officers have 
been either killed, wounded, or captured. During the 
night succeeding the battle we were engaged in taking 
down our tents and sending back our baggage. 

On the 8th of October we danced a minuet back 
ward! and merely showed the enemy our teeth and 
claws. We did, however, considerable damage with 
our cannon. In the night we began our retreat, and 
arrived at Saratoga in the evening. Bad roads and 
abominable weather caused us to leave in the enemy s 
hands some baggage and a number of cannon. 

On the afternoon of the ioth, General Gates ap 
peared with his army, and stationed himself on the 
heights near the church at Saratoga.* The Fishkill, 

* All of the prominent places mentioned in the campaign 
and retreat have, through the energy of Mrs. E. H. Walworth 
of Saratoga Springs, a Trustee of the " Saratoga Monument 
Association," and whose grandfather was in the battles, 
been marked by handsomely inscribed granite tablets, put 

Letter from New England. 125 

which could very comfortably be waded, alone sepa 
rated the two armies from each other. 

On the i ith, the enemy crossed the Fishkill with 
several brigades ; but my Lord Balcarras opened fire 
upon them with his cannon, driving them back with 
loss. They, however, captured our bateaux, some 
provisions and other articles, together with one Eng 
lish officer and forty men. During the nth, 1 2th, and 
1 3th the cannonading never ceased, while the fire of 
musketry between the outposts of the two armies was 
incessant. The enemy continued, with their superior 
numbers, to hem us in, until by the i4th of October 
retreat was impossible. Our provisions also had by 
this time so diminished that hunger stared us in the 
face. Again, not only was the enemy s position a 
strong one, but they outnumbered us four to one ; so 
that, even should we have chanced to defeat them, 
which, by the way, was highly improbable, our con 
dition, so far as our stomachs were concerned, would 
in no wise have been improved. To force them back 
upon Albany at one coup was not to be thought of. 
The enemy, moreover, did not deign to attack us, as 
they hoped that in a few days hunger would cause us 
to surrender without the shedding of blood. To 
abandon our artillery and baggage, and fight our way 
with bayonets through the terrible wilderness back to 
Carillon, seemed the only thing left for us. But even 

up by Booth Brothers of New York City, who also built the 
Saratoga Monument. 

126 Letter from New England. 

this idea had to be abandoned ; for it had by this time 
become plain to us all, that without any resources the 
larger portion of us would die a most miserable death 
upon the journey. We therefore preferred an hon 
orable capitulation to an ignominious death.* The 

* Governor Horatio Seymour, in his oration at the laying 
of the corner-stone of the Saratoga Monument, said : " Monu 
ments not only mark but make the civilization of a people ;" 
and Lord Macaulay, in his comments on the siege of Lon 
donderry, wrote : " A people which takes no pride in the 
noble achievements of remote ancestors will never achieve 
anything worthy to be remembered with pride by remote 
descendants." The Saratoga Monument, which now in 
massive granite commemorates the surrender of Burgoyne, 
practically illustrates these sentiments of those two great 
men. This monument, which overlooks the Field of the Sur 
render, is 40 feet square at the base, and 154 feet in height; 
and as it stands on a bluff 350 feet high, it has an altitude 
above the river level of 554 feet, thus affording from its 
summit a magnificent panoramic view of the adjacent coun 
try. It is an obelisk, combining the Egyptian and Gothic 
styles of architecture. The interior of the first two stories is 
lined with sixteen bronze alto-relievos (two-thirds the size of 
life), illustrating different scenes in the campaign, such as the 
murder of Jane McCrea, the burial of General Fraser, and 
the passage of Lady Acland to the American camp. Three 
of the exterior niches contain bronze figures in heroic size of 
Schuyler, Gates, and Morgan ; the fourth one like the niche 
of Marino Falieri at Venice being left t vacant with the 
name of ARNOLD inscribed underneath. Its architect was 
J. C. Markham of Jersey City, N. J., and its builders, Booth 


Corner-sto n- laid October 17, i 

Letter from New England. 127 

enemy met us half-way,* and the i4th, I5th, and i6th 
of October were passed in negotiating. On the even 
ing of the 1 6th both generals agreed upon the articles 
of capitulation, which were thirteen in number, and 
were as follows : f 

On the 1 7th of October our army marched to the 
banks of the Hudson, J stacked their arms (neither of 
the enemy s officers nor commissioners being in sight), 

Bros, of New York City, who with great liberality made no 
charge for the corner-stone. 

The " Saratoga Monument Association," under whose 
auspices the monument was erected, and whose president is 
the patriotic and public-spirited Hon. John H. Starin, has 
lately come into possession of the eight bronze field-pieces 
captured from Burgoyne at the time of his surrender. To 
the praiseworthy efforts of the late Hon. S. S. Cox, who 
introduced in Congress the first bill for these cannon, and 
also to the energy of Hon. John Sanford, who completed 
what the death of Mr. Cox left unfinished, is due the fact 
that these cannon will in a few months grace the base of 
the monument. Among these cannon are the twelve- 
pounders captured from our friend, the old " twelve- 
pounder," Major Williams ! 

* Or, literally, " The enemy extended to us his hand." 

f As these " articles" are to be found in any authoritative 
history of the United States, and also in my " Life of Gen 
eral Riedesel," they are here omitted. 

Within the then plain intrenchments of " Old Fort 
Hardy " erected in 1757 under the superintendence of Col. 
James Montresor, an accomplished military engineer, and 
named after Governor Hardy, the royal governor of the 
colony of New York. 

128 Letter from New England. 

and began their march to Boston. The Canadians, 
and most of the Provincials who had fought on our 
side, started in boats for Lake George. These latter 
are from this time forward to be looked upon as ex 
iles. However, it is the intention to send their unfor 
tunate families after them, but without any of their 
earthly possessions.* We passed the enemy s encamp 
ment, in front of which all their regiments, as well as 
the artillery, were standing under arms. Not a man 
of them was regularly equipped. Each one had on 
the clothes which he was accustomed to wear in the 
field, the tavern, the church, and in everyday life. No 
fault, however, could be found with their military ap 
pearance, for they stood in an erect and a soldierly 
attitude. All their muskets had bayonets attached to 
them, and their riflemen had rifles. They remained 
so perfectly quiet that we were utterly astounded. 
Not one of them made any attempt to speak to the 
man at his side ; and all the men who stood in array 
before us were so slender, fine-looking, and sinewy, 

* The condition of these Provincials was most unfortu 
nate, particularly as their status was left very undefined. The 
Provincial officers, it was feared, would be treated as prison 
ers, without any standing as to exchange. Indeed, I have 
now before me a MS. letter from General Fraser, given to 
one of these Provincials previous to the Battle of Saratoga, 
designed to protect him in case of capture. See also General 
I. Watts de Peyster on this subject. General de Peyster s 
works have an authoritative value ; and his writings, as well 
as those of General Rogers, cannot be too highly valued by 
the historical student. 

Letter from New England. 129 

that it was a pleasure to look at them. Nor could we 
but wonder that Dame Nature had created such a 
handsome race ! As to their height, dear brother, the 
men averaged from 6 to 7 inches, according to Prus 
sian measurement ; and I assure you I am not telling 
an untruth when I state that men 8 to 10 inches high 
were oftener to be seen than those of only 5 ;* and 
men of larger height were to be found in all the 
companies. Captain - , who was chagrined at not 
having succeeded in obtaining recruits among these 
people, will corroborate me in this statement. I am 
perfectly serious when I state that the men of English 
America are far ahead of those in the greater portion 
of Europe both as respects their beauty and stature. 
In regard to the gentler sex, I will give you some de 
tails of them also when I arrive at Kinderhook ; and 
now for a space devoted to American WIGS ! f 

Few of the officers in General Gates army wore 
uniforms, and those that were worn were evidently 
of home manufacture and of all colors. For example, 

* That is, 5 feet, 8, 10 and 5 inches. In the Prussian 
army a man must measure at least 5 feet to be accepted 
as a soldier. So that when an officer, or for that matter, 
any German, speaks of the height of another as being 
" 8 or 10 inches," he means that he stands 5 feet 8 or 10 
inches. These 5 feet are never mentioned in speaking of 
his height, as that is an understood thing. 

f The writer evidently makes a pun the persons whom 
he goes on to describe being contemptuously known as 
" Whigs" and some of them, as will be seen further on, 
wearing ivigs, which he proceeds humorously to describe. 

130 Letter from New England. 

brown coats with sea-green facings, white linings, and 
silver dragons, and gray coats with yellow buttons and 
straw facings, were to be seen in plenty. The briga 
diers and generals had, however, uniforms to distin 
guish them from the rest of the officers, and wore a 
band around the waist to designate their respective 
rank. On the other hand, most of the colonels and 
other officers wore their every-day clothes. They 
carried their muskets (to which a bayonette was at 
tached) in their hands ; their pouches or powder-horns 
were slung over their backs, and their left hand hung 
down by their side, while the right foot was slightly 
put forward. In one place could be seen men with 
white wigs, from beneath which long and thick hair 
escaped thick lambs tails hanging down from the 
back ; in another, the glistening black wig of an abbe 
surmounting some red and copper-colored face ; while 
in still another, white and gray clerical-looking wigs 
made of horse and goat hair, and piled up in succes 
sive rolls. In looking at a man thus adorned one 
would imagine that he had an entire sheep under his 
hat, with its tail dangling around his neck. A great 
deal of respect is entertained for these wigs, not only 
because they are supposed to give the wearer a learned 
appearance, but because they are worn by all the 
gentlemen composing the committees and those who 
are renowned for wisdom. The gentlemen who wear 
these different kind of wigs are mostly between fifty 
and sixty years of age ; and having but recently begun 
to wear them, you can imagine what a comical appear- 

Letter from New England. 131 

ance they cut as soldiers. The determination which 
caused them to grasp a musket and powder-horn can 
be seen in their faces, as well as the fact that they are 
not to be fooled with, especially in skirmishes in the 
woods. Seriously speaking, this entire nation has 
great natural military talent. There were many regi 
ments of regulars [Continentals] in the enemy s 
army who had not been properly equipped, owing to 
the lack of time and scarcity of cloth. They have 
flags with all kinds of emblems and mottoes. 

It must also be said to the credit of the enemy s 
regiments, that not a man among them ridiculed or 
insulted us ; and none of them evinced the least sign 
of hate or malicious joy as we marched by. On the 
contrary, it seemed rather as though they desired to 
do us honor. As we filed by the tent of General Gates, 
he invited the brigadiers and commanders of our reg 
iments to enter, and when they had done so he placed 
all kinds of refreshments before them. 

Gates is a man between fifty and sixty years of age ; 
wears his thin gray hair combed around his head ; is 
still lively* and friendly, and constantly wears specta 
cles on account of his weak eyes. At head-quarters 
we met many officers, who showed us all manner of at 
tentions. Philadelphia officers, men of our own blood, 
offered to make our stay in Pennsylvania among their 
loved relations pleasant and agreeable. French offi 
cers overwhelmed us with a thousand complimentary 

* This word in the original may also be translated jovial. 

132 Letter from New England. 

speeches ; and a number of officers formerly in the 
Prussian service were fairly in ecstasies at the sight 
of our blue coats bringing back to them recollec 
tions of the battles of Sovr [Sohr], Prague, and 
Kesselsdorf. Brigadier Weissenfels of Konigsberg 
has rendered many services to those of our officers 
(seven in number) who were taken prisoners [at the 
battles of Saratoga].* We marched to-day to Free- 
mans Farm, four English miles distant. 

* Weissenfels, Frederick H., Baron de, born in Prussia in 
1738 ; died in New Orleans, La., May 14, 1806. During his 
early life he was an officer both in the Prussian and the Brit 
ish service; but emigrating.; to this country, he settled in 
1763 in Dutchess Co., N. Y. He became Lieutenant-Colo 
nel of the 3d N. Y. battalion in 1776, and afterward com- 
manded the 2d N. Y. battalion at White Plains, Trenton, the 
battles of Saratoga, and the battle of Monmouth. He ac 
companied Sullivan s expedition against the Six Nations in 
1779, and fought at Newton. The war left him impoverished ; 
and at the time of his death he filled a minor office at New 
Orleans. He was honored by a military funeral, in recog 
nition of his services at White Plains, Trenton, the battles of 
Saratoga, Monmouth, and Sullivan s expedition. One of 
his daughters descendants is Mr. E. Ellery Anderson, a 
lawyer in New York City. He was also one of the original 
founders of the Society of the Cincinnati ; and his fellow 
Germans deserve to be chronicled here in appreciation of 
their share in the great work of securing the independence 
of the American Republic. One of these, and his associate 
in founding the Cincinnati, was Sebastian Bauman, who. 
by the way, has not had the recognition which he deserves, 

Letter from New England. 133 

December 15, 1777. 

FRIENDS : You will now have to march 215 English 
miles (about 45 German) in order to be with me in 

and therefore we give for the benefit of future historians a 
sketch of his life. 

Sebastian Bauman was born at Frankfort-on-the-Main, 
Germany, April 6, 1739, and was educated as a military en 
gineer at Heidelberg University. He emigrated to this 
country when quite young, and settled in New York as a 
merchant. He served through the Revolution as major in 
Colonel Lamb s regiment of artillery, being commissioned 
by the New York Provincial Congress early in 1776. At 
the evacuation of New York by the Americans, on Septem 
ber 15, 1776, he was the last officer to leave the city. He 
was left in the morning with orders to bring off what artil 
lery remained ; but being cut off from the rest of the army 
by the extension of the British lines across the island, after 
the landing at Kipp s Bay, he waited until nightfall, when he 
succeeded in transporting his guns two howitzers and men 
to Paulus Hook. He also served in the northern cam 
paigns of 1776 and 1777, and was in command of the ar 
tillery at West Point, from 1779 to I 7 Sl - In ! 78i he took 
part in the siege of Yorktown, and at the close of that cam 
paign returned to West Point, where he remained until the 
close of the war. In 1782 he published, from his own sur 
veys, the only American map of the siege of Yorktown. He 
took part in the entry of the American army into New York 
on November 23,1 783, being in command of the artillery, viz., 
two companies of the second (Colonel Lamb s) regiment. 
When the army was disbanded he returned to New York 
and resumed his old mercantile pursuits, taking, however, 
command of the New York regiment of artillery in the State 
service. In October, 1789, he was appointed postmaster of 

134 Letter from New England. 

the critical situation in which we at present find our 
selves upon Winter Hill. 

On the 8th of October we marched to Stillwater 
three and a half English miles from where we were 
when I last left off [i.e., Freeman s Farm]. The old 
ruined fort * at this place, as well as the vicinity within 

New York, which position he held until his death, October 
19, 1803, the anniversary of the surrender of Cornwallis. A 
great-great-grandson, Bauman L. Belden, now (1891) resides 
at Elizabeth, N. J. 

The statement of the writer, that so many French and 
Prussian officers were in General Gates army, is quite a new 
revelation. There were doubtless, however, numbers of 
foreigners fighting on the side of the colonists, whose names 
have not come down to us. 

* At Stillwater, in June, 1709, Colonel Peter Schuyler, in 
command of the advanced guard of General Nicholson s 
army, halted and built a small stockaded fort, which he 
called Fort Ingoldsby, in honor of Lieutenant-Governor 
Major Richard Ingoldsby. Again, in the summer of 1756, 
General Winslow, while on his Northern Expedition, halted 
at Stillwater, and, building a new fort on the decaying re 
mains of the old one erected in 1709, called it Fort Winslow. 
N. B. Sylvester s History of Saratoga Co. It is to this fort 
that the writer refers. 

In September, 1777, General Gates, in passing up the Hud 
son on his way*to Bemus Heights, first made his stand at 
this old military station at Stillwater. After remaining here, 
however, for a day or two, he, probably with the advice of 
Kosciusko, for Gates, himself, was seemingly incapable of 
any original ideas save those of intrigue, changed his plan, 
and going up the river about a mile further, threw up his 
memorable intrenchments on Bemus Heights. 

Letter from New England. 135 

a radius of three miles, derives its name from the 
gently flowing river [Hudson], which here has the ap 
pearance of a quiet inland lake. The English corps 
crossed the Hudson in order to take a certain route for 
Boston.* Here we obtained fresh provisions, and our 
palates, which had by this time become accustomed to 
salt provisions, recovered their normal tone by means 
of the fresh meat. 

On the igtti we crossed the Hudson in a few boats, 
and as night had by this time overtaken us, we could 
not go any further towards Shetekok [Scaghticoke], 
a hamlet composed of Dutchmen a rich and highly 
interesting people. Accordingly, we were obliged to 
bivouac here in a meadow placed at our disposal. From 
this time on we began to find great abundance of ap 
ples, from which an incredible quantity of cider is made 
both in New York and all the New England States, 
and which can be kept from three to four years. At 
this place they first began to steal our horses an in 
fernal proceeding, which they have kept up through 
our entire march. By way of comfort they tell us that 
we have either stolen them ourselves, or else have 

* The Germans went to Boston by the route outlined by 
the writer ; but the British went by the old " Hoosac Road " 
by way of Northampton the same by which John Norton 
and the captives of Fort Massachusetts went in the oppo 
site direction to Canada. In other words, over the old In 
dian road over the Hoosac to Deerfield and Northampton. 

Letter from Prof. A. L. Perry, of Williamstown, to the 


136 Letter from New England. 

bought them from persons friendly to the king, who 
in turn have stolen the horses from them ! More 
over, they further tell us that we will now become ac 
quainted with the old Roman law, Ubi rem meam in- 
venio, ibi vindico. We cannot understand, however, 
how they can confound Canadian and German horses 
with theirs ! 

On the 2Oth of October, we passed many Dutch 
and German farm-houses. The farmers have immense 
stores of grain, large heaps of which lie in mows cov 
ered with movable roofs. We went this day as far 
as New City,* a small town on the Hudson, but 
lately started, being only eight years old. It was origi 
nally founded by two individuals named French, who 
have built beautiful dwellings and ware-houses. Both 
of these gentlemen, however, being Tories, that is, 
friendly to the king, they were forced to abandon 
their property. Bakers, smiths, and artisans had es 
tablished themselves in this village, but most of the 
houses were standing empty. We found here a well- 
equipped hospital, in which we met several wounded 
soldiers belonging to our army. They told us that 
they were given tea, sugar, chocolate, and wine, not 
withstanding these articles were extremely dear.f Our 
troops had to bivouac at this place and encounter 
the discomforts of a snow- and rain-storm during the 
night. Our march to-day covered ten miles. 

* The present town of Lansingburg, N. Y. 

f This treatment was in marked contrast with that which 
our prisoners received from the British in New York and 
the South. 

Letter from New England. 137 

On the 2ist, it rained and snowed during the entire 
night. The houses were a quarter of an English mile 
and even more apart, and the roads were hilly and 
bad. After covering fourteen miles, we arrived at 
Greenbush, and put up houses [of boughs ?] in a wood 
near the dwelling of a rich farmer named Wooles- 
worth. During the night it froze hard. 

On the 22d, our march was almost entirely through 
woods, in which every little while we came across mis 
erable dwellings. Finally, after going twelve miles we 
came to a plain lying between several hills, where the 
borough of Kinderhook (consisting of about seventy 
straggling houses) is situated. The most prominent 
house in the village belonged to a man named Van 
Schaaken [Van Schaak].* It was built of stone, and 
three stones high. This man showed us many little at 
tentions, and was a kind friend to us. The rest of the 
people, who were Dutch by birth, were also kind. They 
had but one fault that is, they were selfish, and were 
as fond of money as a Jew. Every article they sold us 
was terribly dear. Most of the houses were very well 
built, and nicely finished inside. The inhabitants in 
general lived well. Their breakfast consisted of milk, 
tea, roast-meat, baked apples, and all kinds of rich but 
ter-cakes. We could have made ourselves comfort 
able enough with tea, if we had only had enough of it. 
Those people who were in comparatively easy circum- 

* Van Schaak was a Tory or Neutral, and was very cruelly 
treated afterward. 

138 Letter from New England. 

stances had gilt frames around their mirrors, and 
very good pendulum clocks. Similar household fur 
niture can be found all along the road to Boston. As 
all the barns of the farmers were full of grain, we had 
to camp out in a neighboring wood. 

December 18, 1777. 

FRIENDS : I am at last in Kenderhook [Kinder- 
liook], whence I promised to write you a chapter about 
pretty girls. Before, however, reading my narrative 
to a lady, examine it carefully so as to see if there is 
any danger of its causing future trouble between me 
and my dear countrywomen. Should you decide 
against it, have mercy on me, and upset the ink-stand 
-on the entire chapter ! 

The ladies in this vicinity, and as far as Boston and 
New York, are slender, of erect carriage, and, without 
being strong, are plump. They have small and pretty 
-feet, good hands and arms, a very white skin, and a 
healthy color in the face which requires no further em 
bellishment. I have seen few disfigured by pock-marks, 
for inoculation against smallpox has been in vogue 
here for many years.* They have, also, exceedingly 

* This remark seems to us, at the present day, singular ; 
but not so when it is remembered how bitterly both the 

. clerical and the medical professions fought against inocula 
tion the former, indeed, inveighing against the practice 
from the pulpit and when it is also recalled that the deaths 
in London alone from smallpox fell during the last century 
but a trifle short of 200,000. Indeed, so common was it, 
that Macaulay says that " a person without a pitted face was 

vthe exception." 

Letter from New England. 139 

white teeth, pretty lips, and sparkling, laughing eyes. 
In connection with these charms they have a natural 
bearing, essentially unrestrained, with open, frank coun 
tenances, and much native assurance. They are great- 
admirers of cleanliness, and keep themselves well shod. 
They frizz their hair every day, and gather it up on the 
back of the head into a chignon, at the same time puff 
ing it up in front. They generally walk about with 
their heads uncovered ; and sometimes, but not often, 
wear some light fabric on their hair. Now and then 
some country nymph has her hair flowing down be 
hind her, braiding it with a piece of ribbon. Should 
they go out (even though they be living in a hut), they 
throw a silk wrap about themselves and put on gloves. 
They have a charming way of wearing this wrap by 
means of which they manage to show a portion of a 
small white elbow. They also put on some well-made 
and stylish little sun-bonnet, from beneath which their 
roguish eyes have a most fascinating way of meeting 
yours. In the English colonies the beauties have 
fallen in love with red silk or woollen wraps. Dressed 
in this manner, a girl will walk, run, or dance about 
you, and bid you a friendly good-morning or give you 
a saucy answer according to what you may have said 
to her. At all the places through which we passed 
dozens of girls were met with on the road, who either 
laughed at us mockingly, or now and then roguishly 
offered us an apple, accompanied by a little courtesy. 
At first we thought they were girls from the city, or 
at least from the middle classes ; but lo and behold ! 

140 Letter from New England. 

they were the daughters of poor farmers. Notwith 
standing the many pretty things I have said about the 
gentler sex in this country, I must still give my loved 
countrywomen the credit of possessing certain gentle, 
lovable, and languishing qualities which lend additional 
attractions to their charms, but which are entirely 
lacking in the beauties to be found here. Most per 
fectly formed and beautiful nymphs are to be seen on 
all sides ; but to find one endowed with all the attrac 
tions of one of the graces is a very difficult thing.* 
Enough of this, however. I think it high time to bring 
this disquisition to a close ; and I shall now do so after 
stating that the fair sex were the cause of our losing 
some of our comrades on the 23d of October, f 

* This was probably said to neutralize among his country 
women when he should return to his fatherland, the encomiums 
he had lavished upon the American women. Perhaps, how 
ever, the recipient of this letter, acting on the writer s hint, 
threw the ink-stand over this portion ! 

t That is, by desertions. In fact, both all along the line of 
this trip to Cambridge and during the stay of the Germans in 
Pennsylvania and Virginia, many deserted, and taking Ameri 
can wives, founded families who are among the most respect 
able of our citizens. In going through Berkshire Co., Mass., 
particularly, the Yankee girls had most seductive charms for 
the German captives. Johann Hintersass (John Henderson) 
" stayed over at Williamstown, and founded a family who are 
now still in existence." Prof. A. L. Perry of Williamstown 
to the Translator. Indeed, says Rosengarten in his "German 
Soldier in the Wars of the United States," " of thirty thou 
sand Germans who were in the Revolutionary War; hardly 

Letter from New England. 141 

To-day being a day of rest, I shall give you an ac 
count of two things which particularly struck me in 
this country. The first of these was the evident mas 
tery that the women possessed over the men. In 
Canada this power is used by the women to further 
the interests of the men ; but here it is used nearly to 
ruin them. The wives and daughters of these people 
spend more than their incomes upon finery. The man 
must fish up the last penny he has in his pocket. The 
funniest part of it is, that the women do not seem to 
steal it from them ; neither do they obtain it by cajol- 

half returned, and the large portion of those who remained did 
so voluntarily, making their new home the beginning of a new 
life very unlike that of their native land." Mr. Rosengarten 
also tells us that the late General Geo. A. Custer, who lost his 
life in a battle with the Sioux Indians, was a great-grandson 
of a Hessian officer who served under Burgoyne. After the 
latter s surrender he was paroled, settled in Pennsylvania, 
married there, changed his German name, " Kiister," to one 
easier to pronounce in English, and moved to Maryland, /where 
the father of General Custer was born in 1806. I quote, 
as also in point, the following extract which I copy from the 
General Advertiser and Morning Intelligence of I///: "If 
America has been the grave of a great number of Germans, 
some of them, however, have found it the road to fortune ; 
and among the latter we learn is Colonel De Mengen, who, 
having been taken a prisoner of war, had the good fortune 
to become acquainted with Miss Hancock, only daughter of 
the late President of the American Congress, and obtained 
the hand of that rich heiress, who is besides endowed with 
the most amiable qualities, and with whom that fortunate 
officer has gone to settle in Philadelphia." 

142 Letter from New England. 

ery, fighting, or falling into a faint. How they ob 
tain it as obtain it they do Heaven only knows ; 
but that the men are heavily taxed for their extrava 
gance is certain. The daughters keep up their stylish 
dressing because the mothers desire it. Should the 
mother die, her last words are to the effect that the 
daughter must retain control of the father s money-bags. 
Nearly all articles necessary for the adornment of the 
female sex are at present either very scarce or dear r 
and for this reason they are now wearing their Sunday 
finery. Should this begin to show signs of wear I 
am afraid that the husband and father will be com 
pelled to make their peace with the Crown if they 
would keep their women-folks supplied with gewgaws ! 
The second thing which attracted my attention was 
the negroes. From this place to Springfield few farm 
houses are met with that do not have one negro family 
living near by in an out-house. Negroes, in common 
with other cattle, are very prolific here. The young 
are well fed, especially at the calf age. Take it all in 
all, slavery is not so bad. The negro is looked upon 
in the light of a servant to the farmer, the negress do 
ing all the heavy housework, while the pickaninnies 
wait upon their young white masters. The negro is 
sometimes sent to war instead of his. youthful owner ; 
and for this reason there is scarcely a regiment in 
which you shall not find some well-built and hardy 
fellows. Many families of free negroes are also met 
with here who reside in good houses, are in comfort 
able circumstances, and live as well as their white 

Letter from New England. 143 

neighbors. It is an amusing sight to see a young ne- 
gress her woolly hair gathered up in a knot behind, a 
sun-bonnet perched upon her head, and encircled by a 
wrap ambling along, with a negro slave shuffling in 
her wake. 

On the 24th we marched through Cleverac [Clav- 
erack], a small hamlet inhabited entirely by French 
men. The pastor of the place stood in the road with 
several of his flock, and bestowed upon us his apos 
tolic benediction. We ascertained that from being a 
stocking-weaver he had developed into a servant of 
the church.* Thus is it in America, and, alack ! al 
most entirely throughout the Evangelical Church. It 
is but a short time since that a former sergeant-major 
in the Prussian army, who had become the pastor 
primarius of the Evangelical church at Albany, cre 
ated a great sensation. Meeting two of his congrega 
tion in a tavern, who remonstrated with him for treat 
ing his young wife too harshly, he clubbed them so 
severely that one of them died from the effects of a 
broken head, and the other had both of his arms shat 
tered. Since that time he has been wandering from 
place to place a fugitive, and at present is acting as 
pilot on a ship. This piece of news was told me by 
Mr. Tielemann, our marching commissary, who is a 
native of Manheim, and a member of the committee 

~ This practice was common at one time in Germany. An 
edict of the year 1557 forbids all incompetent artisans from 
entering the priesthood for the purpose of gaining a liveli 
hood. Note by Scklozer. 

144 Letter from New England. 

in Albany, major of a militia regiment, proprietor of 
a tavern in that city, and by profession a shoemaker. 
The English churches have regularly ordained minis 
ters, and the Dutch churches have their ministers di 
rect from Holland.* 

We marched 17 miles to the wretched village of 
Nobletovvn, where we were forced to encamp in the 
open air on account of a scarcity of houses. The 
night became so frosty that in the morning we looked 
like sugar-coated toy-men. 

On the 25th, after passing over miserable stony 
and rocky roads, that led partly through woods, we 
arrived at Great Harrington, where we took up our 
quarters, having marched 13 miles. A rougher and 
more spiteful people I never saw. Our patience was 
often stretched to its highest tension on account of our 
churlish treatment. Most of our officers were not al 
lowed to cross their thresholds, but, in common with 
their soldiers, had to take up their quarters in filthy 
stables and barns. This place has a fine and well-built 

On the 26th we passed through Tyringham, and 
across forests and veritable wildernesses. At first we 
swore at the abominable roads, but ceased when we 
found they became worse, as cursing could not do them 

* In fact, up to 1820, the Dutch Reformed Church at 
Paulus Hook (Jersey City) received all its ministers from 
Holland ; and up to 1825, the morning service was conducted 
in Dutch, and the afternoon in English. 

Letter from New England. 145 

justice.* Presently we entered a large and wild moun 
tainous district, called Greenwood f dismal enough 
to silence the most disobedient child by threatening to 
send it there if it did not behave itself. After march 
ing 17 miles we encamped in this American Caucasus ; 
while, to make things still more uncomfortable for 
us, it rained the entire night. 

On the 27th of October it rained still more ; and the 
roads became so horrible that a curse was merely a 
waste of breath. At length, after marching 1 1 miles 
we took up our cantonments in twenty different 
houses, situated about three good English miles from 
Blandford. In these houses seven regiments and our 
escort of 700 men were quartered. To-day I felt so 
vexed and taciturn that I threw myself upon an 
open barn-floor, hoping to get some rest ; but the cold, 
together with a wind- and hail-storm that was raging, 
banished all sleep. Then, again, the thoughts of to 
morrow s march stung me more even than the fleas, 
which seemed to be holding a general congress" 
around my body. 

On the 28th we had alternately hail, rain, and snow. 

* This reminds one of the story of the extremely profane 
New England wagoner, who, perceiving the loss of his load 
after ascending a high hill, sat down making no remark. To 
a passer-by who, knowing the man, said, " Why don t you 
swear?" he replied in the very same words of the writer 
" I can t do it justice!" 

f Greenfield is here meant a town in Franklin County 
Mass., on the west bank of trie Connecticut River. 

146 Letter from New England. 

The wind was so piercing, that, no matter how warmly 
we wrapped ourselves in our cloaks, it penetrated 
to the very marrow. In addition, our wet clothes 
froze as stiff as iron. A grenadier froze to death upon 
the march, many pack-horses were lost in the same 
way, and since that time I am firmly convinced that a 
man can endure a greater amount of hardship than a 
horse. The oldest soldiers admitted that they had 
never before experienced such a march. Towards even 
ing, we had advanced only ten miles to Westfield, a 
very neat little village. The experience that we had 
passed through that day so aroused the sympathies 
of the inhabitants, that they opened their doors to us. 
It is the custom in this place to put lightning-rods 
on the churches and all the handsome buildings and 
houses, to prevent their being struck by lightning. 
From here, and even as far as Boston, you shall find this 
invention of the learned Franklin in universal use, 
both in the cities and the country. I have never seen 
anywhere larger cattle and swine. A certain author, 
whose name I do not now recall, did not lie when he 
wrote that along the Connecticut River oxen weigh 
ing 1800 and hogs 500 pounds (English weight) were 
to be met with. 

On the 29th, the rain continued, accompanied by 
snow and. hail. The roads were still bad, but not so 
dreadful as before. After covering 7 miles we arrived 
at West Springfield, a village of scattered houses, with 
its own church. The Connecticut River divides this 
town from East SpringfielS. We were taken into the 

Letter from New England. 147 

houses of the villagers. The people were tolerably 
kind, but damned inquisitive. From this village, and 
in fact from the entire neighborhood, whole families 
of women and their daughters came to visit us, going 
from house to house to gaze upon the prisoners. 
From the general down to the common soldier, all had 
to stand inspection, The higher the rank of the per 
son so visited, the longer they stayed and " sized him 
up " ! I was delighted when they soon left me, but 
my brigadier, in spite of his horrible grimaces, was not 
so fortunate. I offered chairs to the pretty girls, and 
by this means gained time partially to revenge myself 
by staring at them in my turn. Finally, we became 
tired of this sort of thing, as one party after another 
continued to enter our rooms without knocking. I 
actually believe that our host charged an admission-fee 
to see us. 

On the 3Oth, we had a day of rest. Early in the 
morning I had myself shaved, and powdered my hair. 
It is the custom of the women and girls in this neigh 
borhood either to sit upon side-saddles or ride upon 
pillows placed at the backs of their husbands or gal 
lants. Very often a young beauty may be seen lead 
ing an entire caravan [cavalcade ?] at full gallop. The 
young " bucks," with their miserable clothing and fe 
male trappings, look as if they had stolen their attire 
from the women themselves. 

On the 3ist of October we started out, intending 
to cross the Connecticut River a feat which we were 
not permitted to perform ; for, notwithstanding our 

148 Letter from New England. 

entreaties, the regiments were relegated into a wood 
3^ miles distant, by the Committee of East Spring 
field. East Springfield is an exceedingly lively little 
village, with very pretty houses. It is true that they 
lie from 50 to 100 paces apart, but this space is either 
a yard or a garden, which is separated from the street 
by a fence. The gardens also contain statues. This 
place is a veritable magazine for the storage of weap 
ons for the Americans ; and it has also a small but very 
well-built armory or arsenal. We here saw various 
parks of artillery with their trains, and, among other 
things, twelve entirely new 4-pounders of French 
make. The store- or magazine-houses were filled from 
top to bottom ; and workmen of all trades were seen 
in all the houses engaged in the manufacture of am 
munition-wagons, guns, etc. I have seen here wagons 
which could not have been better made in England, 
and upon which the " R. P." was painted as neatly as 
the " G. R." Order prevailed everywhere ; and an 
old man with a wig and a large gray overcoat attracted 
my special attention by his scolding and the noise that 
he made. I ascertained that he was Master-General of 
Ordnance ; and at that moment I wished that my old 
friend - - had been here to see his colleague, look at 
his dress, and observe the energy he displayed. 

* General De Peyster, on excellent authority, informs me 
that these letters stand for " Reserved Park " and " General 
or Grand Reserve" " Park" in the latter case being under- 


stood. " Grand Park " in connection with artillery is a well- 
known technical term, as well as " Reserve Park." 

Letter from New England. 149 

On the ist of November we marched to Palmer 
a miserable hamlet some 12 miles distant, where 
from necessity we were obliged to encamp. From 
this place as far as Boston mile-stones are set up at the 
distance of every mile. 

On the 2d, our march led through West-town (a 
village containing good houses and wealthy inhabi 
tants) to Brockfield [Brookfield], 15 miles further. 
The people of this village refused to admit us into 
their houses, claiming that neither General Gates nor 
Colonel Reid,* who commands our escort, could de 
mand it of them. 

On the 3d, we passed through Spencer and Luster 
or Leicester, the people of which villages were in the 
same mind as those of Brockfield, and treated us in 
a similar manner. 

On the 4th, a short march brought us to Worcester 
a thriving little city. After much discussion the 
citizens finally allowed us to occupy their houses and 
barns the battalion of Barner being quartered in a 
large meeting-house. Our brigadier and myself lodged 
with a lady of distinction who had two sons in 
Howe s army, and whose husband was residing for the 
time being in England. She was obliged to pay rent 
for living in her own beautiful house, and her furniture 
had been levied on by the Committee. In order, also, 

* General George Reid, colonel of the N. H. Second at 
the battles of Saratoga. In 1785 he was a brigadier-general 
of militia, and in 1791 sheriff of Rockingham County, N. H. 
He died September, 1815. 

150 Letter from New England. 

to make her life as happy and tranquil as possible, 
the Committee had taken possession of her land, and 
in fact exercised a general supervision over her entire 
possessions ! To prevent, moreover, anything from 
being stolen, the Committee have put large locks on 
the house. This lady, whose condition we pitied from 
the bottom of our hearts, received us with attention 
and friendliness. She had been well brought up ; and 
her two very handsome daughters seemed to pattern 
after her. Indeed, we hesitated to receive the many 
attentions she showered upon us, and insisted upon 
doing our own cooking. The elder daughter presented 
her betrothed to us a very worthy young man, who 
in his turn introduced us toother reputable young men 
in the town. These in former days had servants to 
wait upon them, but were now compelled to bow the 
knee before the gentlemen composing the Committee. 
In every city, village, and county Congress has ap 
pointed Committees, who rule subject to its approval, 
and see to it that all of its decrees are obeyed. In 
domitable zeal in the maintenance of liberty and the 
execution of the commands of Congress are the 
necessary requisites for membership in this Committee 
a membership which confers upon one the power to 
rule over his fellow-citizens. These gentlemen were 
in other times plebeians; and Heaven help him who is 
suspected by them of being a Tory ! Many families 
are now living under this suspicion. At their com 
mand the minister leaves the altar, and the male mem- 

Letter from New England. 151 

bers of his congregation grasp the musket and the 

In this town we received 15 thalers of paper-money 
(or about 90 shillings in the same currency) for one 
guinea ; although, according to a law passed by Con 
gress, one guinea is supposed to be worth in paper- 
money 28 shillings. Since then we have paid the 
Americans in their own coin, who otherwise would long 
ago have pulled the wool over our eyes, since six 
shillings in paper is supposed to be equal to five shil 
lings in silver. All articles of food and drink are five 
and six times dearer than formerly ; and all on account 
of this paper currency, for which the public have no 
liking, but which is issued in enormous quantities by 
Congress and all the provinces. Hence all goods 
have been raised to a high price to meet the corre 
sponding [depreciated] value of this paper-money ; for 
otherwise the merchants would suffer great loss. The 
fact that, up to the present time, coin can so readily 
and advantageously be exchanged for paper-money is, 
it is said, to be ascribed to the Tories. In part this is 
true ; for many Tories have exchanged their paper- 
money for coin, so that in case of their being perse 
cuted by party spirit they can easily leave the country 
with ready cash.* It is not true, however, that the 

* The idea of the writer is not very clear, though his lan 
guage has been rendered, as usual, literally. I presume he 
means that the Tories having taken away most of the coin 
that was in circulation, the Americans were very glad to 
exchange their paper for the gold and silver of which they 
stood in want. 

152 Letter from New England. 

Tories have done this either through hatred of the 
Americans or a liking for us. Every one in this coun 
try thinks too much of his own precious self. Even 
the most zealous republican tries to get rid of his 
paper-money, and thinks more of one guinea than they 
do of $15 in paper-money, which is suppo sed to be 
equal in value to 15 piasters. Furthermore, mer 
chants who buy their goods from Frenchmen and 
Hollanders have to pay for them in coin, for the reason 
that American paper is not current in Europe. This 
makes gold very scarce and high ; and consequently, 
the merchants raise the price of goods to such an 
extent, that they not only receive the cost of the goods 
in return, but a tremendously big profit besides. There 
have been times when 17 thalers have been given for 
one guinea. On some occasions people come from 
different points with tons of this paper-money, which 
they desire to exchange. It is true that Congress is 
very watchful with regard to this paper currency, and 
keeps a sharp eye on the smugglers. The-penalty has 
been fixed at large sums of money, and also imprison 
ment ; but there are so many ways of evading this, that 
it is almost impossible to catch them at it. Just at 
present the French and Hollanders will take paper- 
money in return for these goods, but they soon come 
back and exchange it for our specie. 

I will now give you several examples showing the 
high prices ruling here. A tolerably decent hat, 
which I was compelled to buy, cost me 25 rix- 
thalers. A yard of cloth, which costs i\ rix-thalers 

Letter from New England. 153 

at home, cost 2\ guineas here. Four shirts, that I was 
obliged to buy, cost me 4 guineas. At home a yard 
of linen can be bought for 5 groschen. The neces 
saries of life are also pretty high. The wine is dear 
and bad, and a bottle cannot be bought for less than 
20 groschen of our money. The paper on which this 
letter is written (seven sheets) cost 18 shillings (paper- 
money), or more than i rix-thaler of our money. 

On the 5th of November, we tramped through 
Shrewsbury and Northborough to Marlborough, 16 
miles further. 

On the 6th, our way led us to Sudbury, a hamlet 
in which we found a train of artillery, a magazine, 
and other implements of war. We camped in West- 
town 13 miles distant. At last, on the 7th, we passed 
the village of Watertown, marched through Cam 
bridge, and entered the barracks of " Winter-Hill," 
where we are now living in misery. 

A " hill " is called in German a hugel / and the 
entire neighborhood between Cambridge and Boston 
is filled with a number of equally bare and treeless 
hills, which, for the most part, are covered with 
barracks. " Winter-Hill," and " Prospect-Hill," which 
adjoin it, have so many barracks that on one the 
Germans are quartered, and on the other the English. 
The barracks are without foundations, and built of 
boards, through which the rain and snow penetrate 
from all sides. They contain merely dormer-windows ; 
and our people have to endure a great deal of hardship 
while in them, as they afford not the least protection 

154 Letter from New England. 

against the cold. Batches of four and five officers lie 
in holes in which it is impossible to turn one s self. 
Wood is so sparingly dealt out that there is not enough 
to keep the fire burning on the hearth. Within a dis 
tance of 5 English miles no trees or bushes are to be 
found ; and for this reason wood is very dear. 

Generals Burgoyne and Phillips had no quarters as 
signed them, and were, accordingly, forced to take up 
their abode in a tavern. Major-General von Riedesel 
and his staff were quartered in some wretched houses 
in the vicinity of the Hills. Afterwards, all the gen 
erals were assigned to good houses in Cambridge : the 
brigadiers, however, were obliged to remain in their 
miserable quarters. My brigadier and myself are liv 
ing in a house ; our room is on the ground-floor ; and 
the cracks in the walls are so large that you can see 
everything going on outside. I never felt so cold 
before in my life. Indeed, I did not dare to leave the 
hearth ; and the ink on my pen was frozen more than 
a hundred times. If we had a snow-storm, accom 
panied by wind, the snow would be a foot deep in my 
room. The poor soldiers in the barracks had to en 
dure still greater hardships ; for they had neither straw 
nor any covering whatever. 

At the foot of Winter-Hill lies the village of Mystic, 
which is separated from the village of Millford [Med- 
ford] by a small river. Both villages contain good 
houses and numerous artisans. Boston, a much larger 
city than Brunswick [in the duchy of Brunswick], is 
but four English miles distant, and presents, with its 

Letter from New England. 155 

harbor and ships, a fine appearance. None of us, from 
the highest to the lowest, is allowed to enter it under 
penalty of being sent to the prison-ships.* The wife of 
General von Riedesel on various occasions had permis 
sion from the Governor to drive into the city to visit 
some ladies. Between Prospect-Hill and Boston lies 
Bunker s Hill, upon which General Gage s fortifications 
may yet be seen. It is covered with barracks. Be 
neath this hill lies Charlestown, which was burned 
down by the above-named general in his retreat. 
Several handsome houses have already been erected 
on it. 

Cambridge is a small place, having no attractions 
save Harvard College and its large buildings. The 
College church has an antique Roman appearance. 
The houses in the vicinity of Cambridge are quite 
grand, and give the neighborhood a look of impor 
tance. Many of them are the country residences of 
the rich merchants of Boston. In Cambridge a regi 
ment of Provincials, together with a train of artillery, 
lie quartered in barracks for the protection of the 
town. There is also a large magazine here. 

On a hill near Prospect-Hill a regiment of Ameri 
cans are stationed. They have drawn a chain of out 
posts about the hills on which we are quartered, and 
through which no subaltern or soldier is allowed to 
pass without a permit from General Heath, Governor 

* So it seems that the Americans had prison-ships as well 
as the British ! 

156 Letter from New England. 

of Boston. For disobeying this order the offender is 
liable to be shot. Two English soldiers have already 
been shot by the sentinels, and forty English soldiers, 
who were arrested without passes by the patrol, have 
been sent to the prison-ships. As yet we have had no 
such experience in our corps. A great deal of ani 
mosity exists between the American and English sol 
diers ; and a number of encounters that have taken 
place between them have made our stay here still more 
irksome and unbearable. At first no officer could 
ride or walk farther than a mile. This has now been 
changed to a three-mile limit. These boundaries are 
patrolled by sentinels ; and an officer would risk a 
great deal if he overstepped these bounds. The staff- 
officers have also quarters assigned to them now. 
Many have refused to leave, but have caused their bar 
racks to be placed in better order. 

General Burgoyne as well as Major-General von 
Riedesel gave a ball, to which they invited a number 
of ladies from Boston and its vicinity. The Com 
mittee, however, issued the most stringent orders for 
bidding any one to attend ; and consequently the in 
vited guests, with two notable exceptions, failed to put 
in an appearance.* These were the two daughters of 
General Schuyler, one of whom is married to a Mr. 
Carter, f both of whom dared to disobey the order. It 

* A very small piece of business on. the part of General 

f This was Angelica, the eldest daughter of General 
Schuyler, a beautiful and brilliant girl, who married an Eng- 

Letter from New England. 157 

was General Schuyler himself who furnished Major- 
General Riedesel with the addresses of his two daugh 
ters, and the Committee therefore said nothing about 
it. We have no intercourse with anybody excepting 
ourselves. Large ftes are not given ; and Generals 
Burgoyne and Phillips live in a very retired manner. 
As we live far apart from each other, for instance, 
General Riedesel is about a mile and a half away from 
us, and as the roads in winter are in a wretched con 
dition, most of us live a solitary kind of life. The 
German and American officers hold no intercourse 
with each other. The regiments [American] stationed 
here are made up of militia, and are mostly working- 
men. We had great trouble in convincing the in 
habitants that our officers had no civil profession ; 
and even when they were convinced of that fact, they 
labored under the idea that it was because our officers 
were too capricious to work. 

December 30, 1777. 

President Hancock has now been several weeks in 
Boston. His arrival was welcomed by the ringing of 
bells and the firing of cannons. This man, whom 

lishman, John Carter Church. He came to this country 
under the name of Carter, having fled from England on ac 
count of a duel. He was a man of large wealth and good 
social standing, and on his return to England he resumed his 
name of Church, and entered Parliament. His son, Philip 
Church, owned a beautiful seat about three miles from the 
village of Angelica, N. Y., which he so named in honor of his 

158 Letter from New England. 

the most zealous republicans call "the American 
king" in order to provoke us, looks, to all appear 
ance, worthy of the position he holds as the first man 
in America. Moreover, he is so frank and conde 
scending to the lowest, that one would think he was 
talking to his brother or a relative. He visits the cof 
fee-houses of Boston, where are also congregated the 
poorest of the inhabitants men who get their living 
by bringing wood and vegetables to the city. Indeed, 
he who desires to advance in popularity must under 
stand the art of making himself popular. In no coun 
try does wealth and birth count for so little as in this ; 
and yet any one can maintain the position given him 
by fate without being in the least familiar with the 

Those of our officers who are really captives are to 
be found partly in Westminster and partly in Rut 
land ;* but those of our subalterns and privates who 
are prisoners are scattered far and wide. In one sense 
of the word the captive officers have more liberty than 
we, for they are at liberty to go wherever they please, 
provided they have permission from the commission 
ers in charge. Many of them have received leave to 
go to Canada, and not a few^have visited us, remain 
ing four weeks and even longer. They were, how 
ever, obliged to pay for everything they bought in 
specie, as they had had no opportunity of exchanging 
it for paper currency. Moreover, they have to pay 

* In Worcester County, Mass., not Vermont. 

Letter from New England. 159 

two and three times as much for the necessaries of life 
at the places where they are stationed than if they 
were in Boston. The profit made by the merchants 
of this country on their goods is almost beyond belief. 
If I buy any at fourth hand I can rest assured that I 
am paying sixteen times as much as I would otherwise 
have paid had I bought at first hand. Some articles 
would even be still dearer than they are if it were not 
for so many French ships arriving here. One pound 
of St. Omer [tea] can be bought of them for i-^- silver 
piaster, or 2 thaler in our money ; while the mer 
chants in Boston would not sell it for less than 2\ 
piasters. The French pay us daily visits on the hills 
for the purpose of disposing of their wares. They 
also furnish us with our reading. They sell us come 
dies and tragedies in single numbers, which they have 
brought along to wile away the time on the voyage 

The captured privates were at first confined on the 
prison-ships ; afterwards they were allowed to go into 
the cities and the country and earn a living for them 
selves. Many of them were compelled by necessity to 
do this, and people from places 80 and even 100 English 
miles distant come to Boston to hire them. Those 
having trades get along nicely, and are, besides, able 
to earn money. Those that have no trades are obliged 
to thresh, chop wood, and do other menial offices. 
All sergeants, aye, and even some of the ensign stand 
ard-bearers, have to work and attend upon the farmers. 
The food they receive is good, and they are not for- 

160 Letter from New England. 

bidden to tap the cider-barrel. Each inhabitant who 
has a prisoner must be responsible for him. He can, 
however, discharge him, provided they let those in 
authority know of it. Time alone can tell whether 
some of these young and unmarried chaps will not be 
captured by the daughters of the people for whom 
they are working.* 

January I, 1778. 

MY DEAR FRIENDS : I wish you a right happy New 
Year, and expect soon to have the pleasure of hearing 
from you. 

January ^th : To-day we received the sad news 
that the worthy and upright Captain von Dahlsijerna 
had died at Albany on the 23d of December. Here 
also, in the barracks, Lieutenant Pfluger, a brother- 
in-law of Colonel Baum, has just died of consumption. 
By way of comfort, on the other hand, we have re 
ceived greeting from Major Lutterlob, formerly in the 
Brunswick service, but now Quartermaster-General 
in Washington s army. Major von Mengen also re 
ceived a visit from his cousin, a doctor of medicine 
named Schmidt. He, Mengen, is in excellent cir 
cumstances, and is married to a very near relative of 
President Hancock, f 

January \^th: Our ennui increases and becomes 
almost unbearable. Very often the weather prevents 

* This proved in very many instances to be the case, es 
pecially in Virginia and Pennsylvania. See preceding note, 
f A daughter. See note ante. 

Letter from New England. 161 

us from going out for a walk or a ride. The Cana 
dian winter is golden in comparison with this ; for 
while there we never had such continuous penetrating 
and cold winds. Up to the present time the winter 
has been one continuous storm. The winds are so 
violent that they cause our wooden houses to rattle 
and tremble. In connection with this, the weather is 
variable. One day we have a thaw, and on the next 
the cold is as intense as in Canada. We have had an 
astonishing amount of snow, and yet only four days of 
good sleighing. Sleighing here, both as regards the 
roads and horses, cannot be compared with that in 

The chief amusement we have at present is a suit 
between General Burgoyne and an American colonel 
named Hanley [Henley]. The former accused the 
latter of attempting to kill an English soldier upon 
Winter-Hill. The case is being tried by an American 
court-martial made up of two colonels, two lieuten 
ant-colonels, two majors, and four captains, with Brig 
adier-General Glover presiding. The mode of con 
ducting these trials is different from ours. The 
court-house is an oval building, having on all sides 
large church windows reaching to the roof. The in 
side is nothing but a large hall, the middle of which is 
partitioned off by a railing and two steps leading to a 
platform, thus making one half of the room one foot 
and a half higher than the other. At the further end 
and opposite the large door the President sits upon a 
chair, which, when he stands up, nearly reaches to his 

1 62 Letter from New England. 

breast. On each side of this chair the assessors sit, 
those of higher rank occupying more elevated seats 
than those of lower. All, however, have a wooden 
casing something like a desk before them. In 
front of the President s chair a large square table is 
placed at which sits the Advocatus Caus&,* with the 
plaintiff on his left hand and the defendant on his 
right, while they in turn have their counsellors or 
assistants at their side. The counsellors of General 
Burgoyne are Generals Phillips and Von Riedesel. 
Each party has four or five officers sitting on the op 
posite side of the table, who, as well as the Judge Ad 
vocate, take notes of the proceedings. The Judge 
Advocate examines the witnesses ; and the President 
and assessors, aye, even the plaintiff and defendant, are 
also allowed % to question them. These questions, 
together with their answers, are put down in the 
minutes. On these trials long speeches are made 
by either side, having reference to the bearing of the 
law upon the matters under consideration. In several 
instances General Burgoyne demonstrated his abilities 
as a great orator, and caused the entire court to shed 
tears. The trial grows daily more and more pro 
tracted ; and it would seem as if the attack made 
upon the soldier by Colonel Henley (who, by the bye, 
has charge of all the magazines) was caused by a dis 
pute between him and the English soldiers while the 

* That is, the Judge Advocate-General in this instance 
Lieutenant-Colonel Tudor. 

Letter from New England. 163 

provisions were distributing. Henley s main defence 
appears to be an attempt to gloss the matter over by 
ascribing his act to zeal in the performance of his duty. 
In all probability the minutes of the proceedings will 
be printed. Every male person is allowed to attend 
these trials and to take notes thereof. The court 
house is jammed ; for even the humblest person is 
allowed to attend.* 

* For the merits of this case though not for its details, 
which are nowhere described so graphically or so fully as 
in the text the reader is referred to General Heath s Me 
moirs. As this work is extremely rare, and therefore not 
easily accessible, it may be stated that Colonel Henley s 
offence was, in the words of General Heath, as follows: 
" Another serious matter took place about this time : Colonel 
Henley, who had the immediate command at Cambridge, a 
brave and good officer, but warm and quick in his natural 
temper, having ordered some prisoners who were under 
guard turned out that he might examine them, one of them 
treated him, as he judged, with much insolence, upon which 
he pricked him with a sword or bayonet. General Burgoyne 
immediately presented a complaint against Colonel Henley, 
charging him with barbarous and wanton conduct, and in 
tentional murder." General Riedesel s account is materially 
different, and is in these words : " On the 8th of January the 
American Colonel Henley, with his men, was on guard be 
hind the barracks on Prospect Hill. In front of one of the 
barracks stood eight English soldiers belonging to the pth 
Regiment. They were engaged in conversation, when sud 
denly the above-mentioned colonel ran in among them with 
a drawn dagger like a maniac, and in an instant mortally 
wounded two of the group." A sharp correspondence fol- 

164 Letter from New England. 

Jan. ipth : Up to the present time no one has been 
allowed to go into Boston, though, since we have 
had permission to go to Charlestown (which is sepa- 

lowed between Heath and Burgoyne, which resulted in a 
court-martial, the result of which was an acquittal in these 
words : " The court, after mature consideration, are of 
opinion that the charge against Colonel Henley is not sup 
ported, and that he be discharged from his arrest. The 
general approves the opinion of the court, thanks them for 
their unwearied endeavors to investigate the truth, and 
orders Colonel Henley to assume his command at Cambridge 
immediately. The general thinks it to be his duty on this 
occasion to observe, that although the conduct of Lieuten- 
ant-General Burgoyne (as prosecutor against Colonel Henley) 
in the course of the foregoing trial, in his several speeches 
and pleas, may be warranted by some like precedents in 
British court-martial, yet as it is altogether novel in the 
proceedings of any general court-martial in the army of the 
United States of America, whose rules and articles of war 
direct that the Judge Advocate-General shall prosecute in 
the name of the United States, and as a different practice 
tends to render courts-martial both tedious and expensive, 
he does protest against this instance being drawn into prece 
dent in future." The writer in the text, it will be noted, 
speaks also of the long-drawn-out trial. Colonel David Henley 
died January 1st, 1823, at Washington, D. C, and was at the 
time of his death a clerk in the War Department. He was 
an officer of merit, and during his career held various im 
portant, positions in the United States Government. Col. 
David Henley has sometimes been confused by historians 
with his brother Maj. Trios. Henley also on Gen. Heath s 
staff -who was killed in the skirmish at Montresor s Island 
(now Randall s) in Sept,, 1776. 

Letter from New England. 165 

rated from Boston by a small bay), I have been enabled 
to see the latter city from a short distance. This, 
however, has only whetted my curiosity to see its in 
terior. The ringing of the city s bells is very fine, 
Boston, also, is famous for its chimes. 

Feb. 5, 1778 : To-day has been one of the happiest 
I have experienced since I came here. Commissioner 
Messero, who has general charge of all the prisoners, 
has brought a large bag full of letters from Boston. 
It is true that they have all been opened and read, but 
this does not matter. The letters were forwarded 
from Rhode-Island to Boston, and it is said that 
there are still more at the former place. I received 
eight letters in all, the oldest being dated on the 4th 
of March, 1777, and the most recent on the 3d of Sep 
tember. I cannot convey to my friends the pleasure 
I experienced on receiving so many letters, and in 
their own handwriting too ! Commissioner Messero, 
a Dutchman by birth, has been take it all in all 
exceedingly friendly to us. But when shall this letter 
be so fortunate as to be read by you ? 

Our situation is daily becoming worse. Differences, 
disputes, misunderstandings, and quarrels seem to be 
the order of the day.* The Americans are beginning 

* In this connection it may be well to quote from the 
Narrative of General Riedesel two occurrences similar to that 
of Colonel Henley, having a far more tragical ending, which 
took place in Cambridge some months later. The quota 
tion is made for the purpose of showing that our adversaries 
in the Revolution suffered nearly as many grievances at our 

1 66 Letter from New England. 

openly to accuse us of breaking the articles of capitu 
lation, and are unfairly trying to saddle the blame 

hands as we experienced from theirs. It is to be feared 
that the brutal Cunninghams, of unsavory New York Sugar- 
house memory, were not confined to the British side. 
Here is the account : " On the I4th of June a new difficulty 
arose between the Provincials and a Brunswick soldier of the 
regiment Rhetz, which cost the latter his life. He was on 
the point of going beyond the chain with his young and 
beautiful wife, who had followed him from Europe, when 
six brutal militiamen began joking with the woman in a 
coarse manner. The husband in protecting the honor of his 
wife finally found himself forced to defend her and himself 
with a cane against their assailants. The sentinel near by 
witnessed the unequal combat with all composure, but when 
the German drove back the Americans, he ran up and thrust 
his bayonet through him. The poor man soon expired. 
Riedesel again complained bitterly to Heath, whereupon the 
latter sent the murderer to Boston for trial, but it could 
never be ascertained what was done to him. ... A still 
sadder case, however, occurred a few days later, on the i/th 
of June. On that day the English Lieutenant Broune, 
with two Boston ladies, rode down Prospect-Hill in a one- 
horse carriage. [The English occupied Prospect-Hill and 
the Germans Winter-Hill.] The road was very steep, and 
the horse consequently was going at full speed. At the 
foot of the hill a double guard of Americans was stationed, 
whose duty it was to watch that portion of the road lying 
outside the chain, and also the storehouse at this place. The 
guard, although they must have known Broune by his uni 
form, nevertheless called to him to stop. This it was im 
possible for him to do at once, as the horse was running at 
full speed. He therefore turned round to show his sabre, 

Letter from New England. 167 

upon us.* This much is certain, viz., that General 
Gates, it is said, intends to throw up his command 

thereby indicating that he was an officer. Notwithstanding 
this, however, the Americans ran up with fixed bayonets ; 
and one of them, regardless of the ladies in the carriage, 
fired a bullet through the head of the officer. He died a 
few hours afterwards. General Phillips, upon hearing of this 
circumstance, was fairly beside himself with anger, and dur 
ing his first excitement wrote a note to General Heath which 
resulted in his being placed under arrest. This occurrence 
caused a general excitement in both camps, especially in 
that of the English. Some officers who had .hastened to 
the scene carried their mortally wounded comrade into the 
camp, and caused his murderer to be arrested. The latter 
was also sent to Boston, but nothing was heard of his being 
punished. According to rumor, the fellow was sent to the 
army of General Washington, where, perhaps, other oppor 
tunities were given him of showing his bravery in a similar 
manner to an unarmed foe. On the ipth the deceased was 
buried with all military honors, from the church at Cam 
bridge, Heath having given his consent to it. In the cortege 
were several American officers of high rank." 

* This is a question which has given rise to a vast amount of 
discussion, and regarding which much has been written upon 
both sides. It is certain that one of the articles viz. : No. 
VI., specifying that " nothing belonging to the king should 
be hidden" was violated, Mrs. General Riedesel, by her 
own account, having secretly packed away the German 
colors in her private baggage and carried them home a 
feat which she seemed to consider (see her letters) a most 
praiseworthy act ! The colors of the 9th English regiment, 
also, concealed by Colonel Hill at the Surrender, in violation 
of the same article, are now (1891), as my friend Mr. J. J. 

1 68 Letter from New England. 

and refer the matter to Congress. In many respects 
it would be a sad thing for us all should we have to 
remain here for any length of time longer ; though, 
on the other hand, should we be sent into the interior 
of the country we would be widely separated, besides 
having to pay for the necessaries of life four times as 
much as we do here. No life can be more unhappy 
than an idle one, and knowing, as we do, that our 
present state of idleness is an enforced one, we pass 
our lives as if in sleep. We have no means of occu 
pying our time, neither have we books with which to 
wile away the weary hours. 

Feb. \^th : The suit against Colonel Henley is still 
on, and the proceedings are carried over from day to 
day. We can obtain no reliable information from 
the vicinity, and I have made up my mind to believe 
nothing that I hear. The number of lies that are 
printed * and carried from mouth to mouth is almost 
beyond belief. In reference to matters in Canada 
we are still in the dark. The Americans are talking 
about a large expedition of three corps that is said to 

Dalgleish of Edinburgh, Scotland, informs me, in the Mili 
tary Chapel at Sandhurst, England, and have been photo 
graphed. However, for a most thorough and exhaustive 
discussion of this entire matter the reader is referred to 
Hadderis Journal, most ably edited by Gen. Horatio 
Rogers of Providence, R. I., and published by Munsell & 
Sons of Albany, N. Y. 

* It would seem that the newspapers of that day were 
not so very different from our own ! 

Letter from New England. 169 

have been sent to that province, but for many reasons 
we do not believe it. General Howe has his head 
quarters in Philadelphia, and Congress is now sitting 
at York-Town. Many recruits are being drummed 
up by the Americans and drilled into shape. 

March \st : The suit against Colonel Henley has 
finally come to an end, and, as might have been ex 
pected, has ended to his advantage. The colonel has 
been acquitted, all of his conduct being ascribed to his 
zeal. We have had such penetrating cold that the 
strongest fire on our hearth has been insufficient to 
keep us warm. 

March \%th : To-day an officer sent by General 
Burgoyne to Congress returned with the news that 
Burgoyne will be allowed to return to England for a 
time for the benefit of his health. But, alas ! it has 
been almost decided that we, or rather the entire 
army, shall be detained in this country, and that Con 
gress shall not be bound by the articles of capitulation. 
What will now become of us ? We have, however, a 
little comfort in hoping that our letters may now per 
haps be forwarded to our loved friends, but the per 
mission we have received to bring our baggage from 
Canada, and also the other articles sent to us there 
from Lower Saxony, hardly consoles us. The soldiers 
have already worn their clothes for three years, and 
that, too, on ship-board, through woods, and during 
the winter in the barracks ! The officers, who on leav 
ing Canada took nothing with them except their 
worst clothes and those that they were then wearing, 

170 Letter from New England. 

are now sighing for new apparel. Nor do we expect 
their arrival before July. Meanwhile no one can 
foretell what may happen. I will send unsealed let 
ters to my dear friends ; but it is little they will con 
tain beyond the fact that I am still living and in good 
health. For the time being, the letters we send to 
Canada are also required to be unsealed. 

March 27 th : My letter is still lying upon the 
table, and who can tell when it will be sent ? The 
departure of General Burgoyne may be put off for 
some time yet ; and it is still doubtful whether my 
letter can be sent sealed. If this privilege is denied 
me, it shall remain here. 

April 2d: Unexpectedly, I have received word 
that General Burgoyne intends to depart to-morrow.* 
For this reason I am obliged to close my letter with 
out any further additions, excepting to send my best 
regards to my dearly loved friends. 

June \2th : This letter has been lying sealed up to 
date, on a board placed over my hearth, because no 
sealed letters were allowed to be sent away. Captain 
O Connelf intends to start for Europe ; but whether 

* Burgoyne arrived at Newport, by way of Boston, the 
7th of April, 1778, and sailed for England from that port on 
the I4th of the same month. 

f " Captain Laurentius O Connel [Riedesel s adjutant] 
asked permission of Riedesel to return to Europe and ar 
range some pressing family affairs. As the presence of this 
brave officer could now be of little use, Riedesel did all in 
his power to further his wishes. In the middle of June he 

Letter from New England. 171 

he will be able to take my letter with him or not, I do 
not know. I earnestly hope that he may. 

received permission from Congress to return to Europe on 
parole. Riedesel took this opportunity to send by him his 
dispatches to his court ; also the flags which he had saved. 
[See note ante.~] Thes.e flags the captain left in Rhode Isl 
and. They were afterward carried to Canada by Lieutenant- 
Colonel Specht." Stone s translation of the Military Journals 
of Major-General Riedesel. Captain O Connel died in 1819, 
as a pensioned lieutenant-colonel, in Ireland. 



FEBRUARY 5 TH, 1778. 

An American frigate named Boston will leave here 
next week to carry back to France thirty-one French 
officers who have been serving in the Provincial army. 
I have become acquainted with many of these gentle 
men, who on their departure have offered me their 
services to communicate with my relatives and friends. 
I have therefore the pleasure of giving you some news 
by way of France, as it is difficult to send you letters 
by any other route. 

I am well, notwithstanding our last misfortune 
[Burgoyne s defeat], and a devouring desire to return 
to Europe. But not daring to write you anything 
which would put you au fait with my reasons for 
desiring to leave America, I may say, that for all my 
reasons I refer you to a letter which I have confided 

to our M , who has left us for Canada. It went 

last December, and perhaps by this time it is in your 

Our destination appears very uncertain, and God 

knows whether we will leave America this year or not. 


Letter from the Barracks near Boston. 173 

I doubt it, as it is rumored that we are to be sent into 
the country among the inhabitants. Regarding which 
plan, as things go, your compatriots, who are prisoners, 
greatly complain. 

We live in barracks upon a mountain [Winter-Hill] 
two leagues from Boston. They are built of boards, 
and the windows are of paper, so that we have had 
plenty of fresh air this winter. Each barrack is oc 
cupied by 4 officers, or 20 soldiers. If our furniture 
were better, and our dress and equipments, now so 
ragged as scarcely to cover our nakedness, would only 
hold out, it would not be quite so bad. 

The dearness of all articles in this part of the world 
is awful, and surpasses the imagination. We pay for 
a hat 52 florins, while a pound of tea costs 32 florins; 
a shirt, not remarkably fine, 3 guineas ; a pair of wool 
len stockings, 10 florins ; and as to woollen cloth, it 
cannot even be obtained. You may judge from all 
this of the situation of a subaltern who has for his sup* 
port only his pay. 

Fifteen days since, a packet of letters for the Ger 
man troops arrived at Boston. Overflowing with joy, 
I expected to receive some lines from either my rela 
tives or friends in Europe. Judge, then, of my sur 
prise when we were told that the packet had been 
opened in the town ; that only eight letters had been 
forwarded to our chief, and that the remainder (some 
500 letters) were in the hands of the citizens, who were 
passing them from hand to hand ! 



Oct. 10, 1778. 

Heaven be praised that we now have an oppor 
tunity of sending off some letters ! We still sit here 
in our cage, anxiously waiting for the hour of our 
deliverance. Speaking in American official language, 
we yet bear the title of " Conventionists," but in 
reality we are only prisoners. Still, our hopes con 
tinue to be fixed upon Sir Henry Clinton, who, we 
trust, will effect our exchange. Nature, it is true, has 
spared nothing to make this country in every way 
pleasant and delightful ; but in our present circum 
stances we heartily wish that we were again wander 
ing in the wilderness through which we came to this 
place. Even the attractions of the pretty girls who 
are to be found here in large numbers, and who, being 
entirely neutral in reference to the war, ardently main 
tain the/^r natzircz, cannot overcome our longing to 
leave our present quarters. 

To correspond safely has become more and more 
difficult, and therefore you need not expect any more 
letters from me. The prison-ships, with which the 


Letter from Cambridge, Mass. 175 

refractory are threatened, are even now lying before 
our very eyes. 

Some seven weeks ago the French fleet arrived in 
Boston, and since then 9000 more troops are said to 
have arrived a circumstance which has caused every 
thing to be outrageously dear. Neither have we yet 
received our baggage. To clothe an officer from fifty 
to sixty guineas are required, according to present 
prices. You can picture to yourself, therefore, how 
we are going about ! Nevertheless we are still ele 
gantly "frizzed" and "gotten up," because we have 
abundance of time to devote to our personal adorn 
ment. The flour which is used for our bread or, as 
we call it, poudre royale is not spared on our wigs. 
The French officers are polite enough to pay us 
occasional visits ; only we, however, do not dare to 
return the compliment. How my fingers fairly itch 
to write you of some of the contrasts here presented,* 
if I only dared to do so. The French and Americans 
do not at all like each other, and the former often 
express themselves to us about it in no very light 
terms. Of Canada we know nothing. The English 
regiments have been removed into barracks at Rut- 
land,f which the first of us who were prisoners 
named Siberia. 

Several days since I received letters actually dated 

* That is, I suppose, between the French and the Ameri 

f Rutland in Massachusetts, near Worcester not in Ver 

176 Letter front Cambridge, Mass. 

a year ago, and were old enough to have teeth ! They 
have given me no end of pleasure. 


Nov. 13, 1778. 

I send with this an accurate drawing of a bird s-eye 
view of Boston and of different Canadian places, 
sketches of Indians, etc. If the rebels had not cap 
tured before the capitulation my secretary (who, by 
the way, is now serving on the rebel side as a captain), 
with all my sketches and drawings of the campaign of 
1777, I should have been able to send you more.* 

On the 25th of last month our General von Riedesel 
received orders from General Heath, the commandant 
at Boston, to put the German troops in readiness to 
march. The English regiments, which for several 
weeks past have been quartered at Rutland, fifty-three 
English miles from us, have already set out for Vir 
ginia in three divisions. Our first division, which con 
sists of those of the dragoons who survived the affair 
at Bennington, Mengen s grenadier battalion, and the 
regiment of Rhetz, left on the Qth of this month ; the 
second division of Riedesel s and Specht s regiments 

* I suppose that many of the officers, generally skilled 
draughtsmen and of much intelligence, made quantities of 
sketches illustrative of the scenes through which they passed. 
What a treat it would be if we possessed them ! Lieut. 
Aubury attached to the Army of Burgoyne did some 
thing in this direction. 

Letter from Cambridge, Mass. 177 

on the loth ; and the third will be made up of the sur 
vivors of Earner s battalion, the Hesse-Hanau regi 
ment, and the Hesse-Hanau artillery. 

Our destination is Albemarle in Virginia, distant 
from here 583 English miles, or 120 German. Should 
I have the opportunity, you may reckon on receiving 
from me more detailed accounts of our prospects, the 
nature of the country, etc. It is a sorry thing for us, 
and especially for the privates, that our baggage, which 
has lately arrived at Newport, is to be brought by sea 
to Philadelphia, and will not reach us until we arrive 
in Virginia. We will therefore have to make our 
weary and painful march in rags and tatters ; and will 
receive our clothing and equipments in a climate 
where, on account of the heat, we shall have but little 
use for them. 


The departure of Captain Edmonstone,f former 
aide-de-camp of General von Riedesel, again furnishes 
me with the longed-for opportunity of sending you 
proof that I am still living. Have you yet received 
the letters I wrote you in February of this year from 
Charlottesville, and in April from here,;]; in the former 
of which I described our woful wanderings during 
the winter from Boston to the county of Albemarle 
in Virginia, and which lasted from the loth of last 
November until the i6th of January of the present 
year? At least, I consigned them to the protecting 
care of all the patron-saints of Great Britain, that 
they might be insured, not only against the attacks of 
Neptune and his mighty vassals, but against all Chris 
tian flags, pirates, and American privateers ! 

* This letter arrived in Brunswick Nov. 10, 1779. Note by 

t A young Englishman who studied at the Collegio Caro- 
lino, in Brunswick, shortly before the outbreak of the Ameri 
can Revolution. Note by Schlozer. 

\ They did not arrive. Note by Schlozer. 


Letter from Staunton, Va. 179 

Would to Heaven that I could at last read the con 
firmation of my hopes regarding your own welfare, as 
well as that of our friends and dearly-loved relatives. 
Your letters of September, 1777, are as yet the last 
we have received from our Fatherland ; * and this 
mournful uncertainty only increases our longings to 
hear from you. 

We still find ourselves in the same awfully disa 
greeable position, and the hopes that we have at times 
entertained have so often came to naught, that we 
hardly dare venture to hope that we have finally done 
with our inactivity, confinement, vain wishes, and many 
other vexations. It is true, that since my last letter 
our baggage, which we have looked for so long and 
anxiously, has at length arrived from Canada ; but 
even this pleasure has been a vain one to not a few of 
us. In my trunk, for instance, I have found nothing 
excepting articles in a state of utter decay, and from 
the appearance of which it is difficult to say what 
they might have been at some former time. I regret, 
especially, one of my chests in which I had packed 
the furs I had bought in Canada, and which is now 
said to have been burned in the service of the king. 
In fact, I have saved nothing except what I brought 
with me from Saratogha.f Indeed, if only ourmount- 

* Since this date numerous letters have been sent from 
Brunswick to the corps, and, therefore, could not have arrived. 

Note by Schlozer. 

f The Indian spelling of Saratoga. 

180 Letter from Staunton, Va. 

ings [uniforms], and especially our linen wear, which 
we ordered from Brunswick in the spring of 1777, 
had arrived, we might have consoled ourselves for our 
other losses. Now, however, on account of the in 
credible dearness of these articles, we are obliged to 
submit to paying fifteen times more for them than we 
have been used to paying even for the actual neces 
saries of life. Our remittances of money, moreover, 
come slowly ; and although we negotiate occasionally 
some paper-money, we have to suffer a loss at least 
40 per cent. We were happy in Boston far happier 
however, in Canada. We are living here in such an 
out-of-the-way nook of Virginia yes, I might say, sep 
arated from the rest of the world that we neither 
hear nor see anything new, nor receive anything new in 
the way of reading-matter. We learn of nothing go 
ing on in our vicinity, much less of anything from re 
mote quarters. A few days since an English corps 
undertook to make a landing at Hampton, threatened 
Williamsburg, and caused a feeling of disgust* through 
out the entire province, and consequently among us. 
The heat here is intense ; however, the sultry air 
is almost daily cooled off by thunder-storms as ter 
rible as can possibly be imagined. Towards the end 
of February the peach and cherry trees had already 
blossomed ; but towards the middle and end of April 

* The idea of the writer probably is that they were all 
chagrined that the English were not successful in their 

Letter from S taunt on, Va. 181 

all the fruit became frozen even the rye and winter 
wheat suffering severely.* 

Of good neighbors we have none, because hardly a 
gentleman can be found within a distance of forty-two 
miles of Staunton. Real gentlemen, however, can be 
met with nearer to the coast, who are very rich and 
jovial, and own well-furnished houses of fourteen 
rooms or more. These exercise hospitality in the 
noblest manner, often keeping a stranger with them 
for three weeks. 

Since my last, written from Charlotteville, we have 
marched forty English miles further to Staunton, 
the capital city of Augusta County. On our journey 
I passed the famous Blue Mountains, and as a conse 
quence have approached nearer the Ohio and Missis 
sippi. Staunton has about thirty houses, of which 
twenty-four are built in the same style as the very 
common ones in Zellerfelde. 

The barracks are about thirty-four English miles 
from here, and this circumstance often affords me the 
opportunity of giving myself very healthy exercise, 
not to speak of taking off my hat in these strolls 
through the woods to large thick snakes who, how 
ever, are quite polite as long as my horse does not 
step on them. Our barracks, of which I gave you a 
sketch in my previous letter, and which must have 

* This only shows, as I have said in another note, that 
all the talk of so-called weather experts is mere twaddle ! 
The seasons are about the same, year after year. 

1 82 Letter from Staunton, Va. 

caused you to commiserate me, may be compared 
with those in the city of Ninroch in their best days.* 

The English soldiers have built covered walks in 
front of their barracks, and all of their streets resemble 
the Brunswick Yungfernstiege.f The Germans, on 
the other hand, being lovers of vegetables, have laid 
out and planted countless gardens ; and in order to 
raise poultry, they have started poultry-yards, which 
they have surrounded by palisades. These German 
gardens are a great attraction for visitors from even 
sixty or more miles away ; and a cock, which ordina 
rily could be bought for one shilling, will now bring 
half a guinea should he show fighting qualities. Many 
officers who formerly lived at quite a distance have 
had barracks built near the soldiers, which well merit 
the name of good houses. 

The 2ist English regiment have built for their use 
a large church. Church-yards, wells, in fact every- 

* Other letters arriving at the same time with this letter 
describe these barracks as being thin partitions of wood, in 
which the soldiers either ran the risk of freezing or of being 
burned at their fires and suffocated with the smoke. The 
march to reach them is described as terrible, because night 
quarters for them had either to be obtained by force, or else 
they had to encamp during the night upon snow four to five 
feet deep in the woods. Note by Schlozer. 

f Literally, " Maiden s Hill," in the same way as Maiden 
Lane, New York City, was called by the Dutch " Maiden s 
Valley." At the time the writer wrote, the " Yungfern- 
stiege" was a fashionable promenade, having on its top the 
armory of the City of Brunswick. 

Letter from Staunton, Va. 183 

thing which can be made, are in good condition. 
Two American speculators have lately built taverns, 
which already contain two billiard-tables. A com 
pany of English soldiers have likewise erected a 
comedy theatre, in which two performances are held 
weekly, and in which three sets of scenery have already 
been put up. On the drop-curtain a harlequin is 
painted, with his wooden sabre pointing to the words, 
" Who would have expected all this here?" The/^r- 
quette costs four and the parterre two paper dollars. 
The officers lend the necessary clothing to the actors ; 
and drummers are transformed, for the nonce, into 
queens and belles ! Some very fair plays are acted, 
which, on account of their satirical nature, do not 
always please the Americans ; and on this account, 
that their ears may not be offended, they do not visit 
these comedies. 

You may believe that all of this is literally true. 
The soldier desires to show that he can laugh at every 
thing, and, in himself, can find means to make life 
endurable and comfortable. 

A large number of houses and sheds have been 
built by the soldiers, as they found, on first coming 
here, that the barracks were absolutely unendurable 
from their terribly bad condition. As it is, the men 
are greatly confined, and it is even now proposed to 
encircle their already limited area by palisades. Pro 
visions have alternately been passably good or shock 
ingly bad ; and extras are either not to be had at all, 
or are obtained only at incredibly high prices. 

184 Letter from Staunton, Va. 

Heartily, yea, yearningly, do we hope that ulti 
mately we will be free once more. Those officers of 
our corps who were captured in the engagements 
[battles of Saratoga], and, being intended for ex 
change, had already arrived in Rhode Island, were 
obliged to return to Massachusetts-Bay, the exchange 
being discontinued. 

We thus live as much scattered about in North 
America as the Jews are throughout the entire world 
of which nation, by the way, very few are to be seen, 
either here or in any part of America. In fact, you 
may travel one hundred miles without meeting with a 
single family of that nation. 

In conclusion, I wish I could put into this letter a 
pipeful of genuine Virginia tobacco, which is here 
smoked without being prepared, and for that reason 
is uncommonly strong. 

Only remain a friend to myself and my , and 

have the kindness to deliver the enclosed letters.* 

* The captives at Saratogha are therefore enacting a roll 
in Virginia similar to the one played by the captives in Pol- 
tawa in Russia and in Siberia, sixty years ago. Note by 



I have put up some posts in the ground and laid a 
board on it for a desk, upon which I will write and 
tell my dearly loved brother that upon the other half 
of our globe I am in health, happy, and grateful to 
God. I also walk out every pleasant morning and ad 
mire the beautiful clouds which ascend from the val 
leys to the heavens overhead. 

Notwithstanding I have seen such solemn and majes 
tic scenery upon the ocean, I am inexpressibly glad to 
set foot on Staten Island. Scarcely can I restrain my 
self from kissing God s earth. Is she not our mother ? 

Our loved Hessians assimilate themselves to their 
surroundings in all things ; and I remember them 
in my sermons, and in my prayers during the still 
hours of the night, while on my bed, that they may 
be strong in Christian courage. The delay of the 
English generals makes them impatient, while the 
offensive look cast upon the Germans by the English 
excites still more their ire. This state of feeling 
caused lately a bloody affray. A subordinate officer 
of the Yagers, to whom an Englishman said while 


1 86 Letter from Brooklyn, N. Y. 

drinking, " God damn you Frenchmen, you take our 
pay," answered calmly, " I am a German, and you are 
a S ."* Thereupon, both of them whipped out 
their swords, and the Englishman received such a gash 
that he died of his wounds. The brave German was 
not only pardoned by the English general, but the 
latter issued an order that the English should treat 
the Germans like brothers. This will be done the 
more readily as the intelligent German has already 
begun to speak a little English. 

Our first movement forwards was an attack against 
the rebels, f who defended themselves more poorly than 
one would have expected from persons who had the 
stimulus of a love of freedom. The slaughter was 
horrible, more especially by the English troops, upon 
whose ranks the Germans drove the rebels like sheep. 

* The animosity between the Germans and French was 
well known, so that the English soldier mentioned in the 
text probably used the epithet " Frenchman" designedly as 
a term of reproach. Duponceau, one of Baron Steuben s 
aides, writing of his journey with that general, says: "I 
remember that at Manheim the Baron, with a significant 
look, pointed out to me, at the tavern where we dined, a 
paltry engraving hung up on the wall representing a Prus 
sian knocking down a Frenchman in great style. Under 
neath was the following appropriate motto : Ein Franzman 
zum Preuszen wie eine Mucke. A Frenchman to a Prussian 
is no more than a musquito ! " 

t The Battle of Long Island, fought Aug. 27, 1776. This 
shows also that the Americans did more execution upon 
the enemy than the latter would have us believe. 

Letter from Brooklyn, N.Y. 187 

O friend ! it was to me a terrible sight when, the 
other day, I went over the battle-field among the dead, 
who mostly had been hacked and shot all to pieces. 
Many of these were Germans, which gave me the 
greater agony. We have taken many prisoners, who 
would mostly have taken service with us had they 
not been prevented by the English. 

The Indians, many of whom are in our vicinity, are 
not like those which Rosseau and Iselin have de 
scribed. On the contrary, they are all very obliging, 
friendly, and used to work, supple as the deer of the 
forest, and not without a belief in God. When I hold 
up my right hand towards heaven, they fold their 
hands upon their breasts and bow themselves low to 
the ground. 



Sept. 1 8, i776.f 

It was, in truth, easy for me to promise to write 
you a letter from America when I last parted from 
you in Gottingen ; but really up to now it has been 
very difficult for me to fulfil my promise. Indeed, I 
would not have even yet been able to fulfil it had I 
not been living for several weeks as an invalid a 
situation nevertheless, if I must say it, very agreeable to 
me, being in a most delightful part of the world, and 

* Now " Harris Hook (from Eighty-ninth to Ninety-first 
Street, New York). This hook was known in the Revolution 
as " Horn s Hook," and previously as " Horen s Hook." A 
strong redoubt called Thompson s Battery was erected on 
this Hook, which commanded the mouth of Harlem River 
and the narrow channel at Hell-gate. 

f From the late Lieutenant Hinrich to the Editor. Note 
by Schlozer. 


Letter from New York Island. 189 

free from all the turmoils of war and its alarms. I 

fulfilled my promise to , on whose account, as you 

know, I became a soldier. Here, then, for a few jot 
tings down of the adventures through which I have 
passed, though I could not possibly have room to tell 
you all that I have lived through and encountered. 

Last Sunday (the i5th of September) we landed, 
amid the loud cannonading of five sloops-of-war, in 
flat-boats from Long-Island, on New-York Island, 
about four miles from New-York City. As riflemen, 
we were detailed as an advance-guard ; and during 
the afternoon we took entire possession of this part of 
the Island. Hardly, however, had we taken up our 
quarters when a new alarm on the part of the rebels 
obliged us to turn out. I had the right wing of the 
advanced guard ; and as our march led us towards 
King s-Bridge, I was most of the time near the East 
River, along whose banks are the most beautiful 
houses. I had the honor of taking possession of these 
handsome dwellings, and also of the enemy s battery, 
where I found five cannon. The rebels fled in every 
direction. All of these houses were filled with furni 
ture and other valuable articles lawful prizes of war ; 
but the owners had fled, leaving all their slaves behind. 
In a day or two after, however, one head of the family 
after another appeared ; and tears of joy and thank 
fulness rolled down the cheeks of these once happy 
people when, to their great surprise, they found their 
houses, fruits, animals, and furniture intact, and learned 
from me that I had only taken possession of them for 

190 Letter from New York Island* 

their protection. Nor could they believe me until I 
had turned their property over to them. 

A day or two since, the rebels, 4000 strong, at 
tacked our pickets ; and we had to endure a heavy 
fire until afternoon, when I heard that they had been 
repulsed. I say " heard ; " for at one o clock I was 
forced to leave the field, having been shot through the 
left side of my breast by a rifle ball, four fingers width 
from the heart.* To whose care could I more safely 
trust myself than those very people who called me 
yesterday their benefactor and savior, and who re 
ceived me in the most friendly manner and with open 
arms ? As I had never liked noise, and now much 
less than ever, instead of choosing a palatial residence, 
as I could have done, I selected a little house on the 
East River, in which the widow of a preacher, Ogilby,f 

* For the details of this engagement, known as the battle 
of Harlem, the reader is referred both to Mrs. Lamb s and 
to my " History of New York City." The British stretched 
from " Horn s Hook" (where this letter is dated) to " Mc- 
Gowan s Pass," and across the beautiful hills to the northwest, 
their left flank resting on the Hudson. 

f The Rev. John Ogilvie here mentioned was the pastor for 
many years of St. George s Chapel, built by Trinity Church, 
on the corner of Cliff and Beekman Streets, New York City, 
and which some years since gave way to the march of improve 
ment. His death is thus described in my " History of New 
York City:" " One of the melancholy events associated with 
this old church [St. George s Chapel] was the sudden death 
of Rev. John Ogilvie, who, on the iSth of November, 1774, 

Letter from New York Island. 191 

from New York had taken up her abode, together 
with a large number of children and grandchildren. 
Not far from here was the house or rather the palace 
of her old father, who had managed to retain a large 
store of porcelain, wine and brandy. All these people 
returned last evening ; and the sensation I experienced 
when I saw mother and children, and grand-father and 
grand-children, etc., and even the black children of the 
slaves, hugging and kissing each other, excited me to 
such an extent that my wound threw me into a fever 
during the night. The amount of flattery that these 
good people bestowed upon me which I did not 
deserve, as I was only obeying orders cannot be 
imagined. Oh ! how much I could tell you of this 
happy country ; but I see that my paper is already 
half full, and I have not as yet told you how I came 
to this land, nor what experiences I have met with 
since I saw you last. 

My narrative naturally divides itself into two parts, 
viz., my experiences upon water and land. 

i st. From Bremerlehe, by way of Portsmouth and 
Halifax, to Staten Island. 

Of our life and deeds, the truth and the lies all 
mingled together, you have doubtless read in all the 
newspapers. I will therefore pass over everything, con 
fining myself to the Hamburg correspondents. I now 
take my journal in hand, and as soon as I meet with 

while delivering one of his Friday-evening lectures, was sud 
denly stricken with apoplexy." 

1 92 Letter from New York Island. 

anything in it which I think will prove of interest to 
you, I will jot it down ; so do not lose a night s sleep 
in bothering over its chronology and synchronisms. 

The sea is never green, and in the Bay of Biscay is 
not black, as several officers have lately described it. 
On the contrary, it is the color of the sky. 

The air on the fishing-banks of Newfoundland is 
so cold, that although it was in the middle of June, I 
almost froze in a fur-coat. This is caused by a fog, 
year in and year out, which covers the banks and the 
entire coasts of North America to a distance of 15 
German miles from the land. 

The sea has different degrees of saltness. On the 
sand-banks it is less salty than in the deep sea, while 
on the coast of Scotland it is still less so. The nearer 
it is to the equator the less salty it is. 

On the fishing-banks I saw French ships sailing 
hither and thither, and regarded them with pity. Just 
look at the former French possessions in this part of 
the globe on a map of North America for the year 
1755, and then compare them with what now remains 
to them on Danville s map of North America : two 
islands, Miquelon and St. Pierre, the sole remainder 
of their former conquests, and neither of which is able 
to support more than two hundred inhabitants. 

Halifax is a wretched city. The streets are mere 
sandy roads, lined on either side with rows of barracks, 
and inhabited by shoemakers, brewers (who brew the 
beer from the bark of trees, and which is very good*), 

* Spruce beer. 

Letter from New York Island. 193 

and people of that class. The churches are each of them 
merely a house about twenty or more paces long, and 
the arsenal and Government-House are only passable. 
Poverty, crude art, and scarcity of culture and refine 
ment are to be seen everywhere ; houses built only 
of a few boards, and of exceedingly rude and primitive 
appearance, stand in a meadow. Horned cattle were 
scarce and very small ; and the few that were to be 
seen were without herders. The forts and batteries 
were simply composed of freshly thrown up mounds 
of sods. Many New-Englanders have come here from 
Boston, and this influx may probably help develop 
the province. 

Upon anchoring at Sandy Hook, I took a sketch of 
the vicinity, taking in its harbor, with the result, that 
I found that all the charts designated the east-south 
easterly point of Staten Island incorrectly. They 
draw the point in the shape of an obtuse angle, where 
as it projects so prominently that when you enter close 
by Sandy Hook you are obliged to sail in a somewhat 
southerly, then in a northerly, and then in a westerly 
direction before you can see the ravelin. I have 
rectified this error on my chart. 

On the 1 2th of August, we entered the harbor of 
New York, or Sandy-Hook, and cast anchor off 
Hendrick s Point. All that could be seen in the har 
bor was a fleet of 450 sail, and also a number of boats 
which patrolled the enemy s coasts, both to guard 
against our fleet being set on fire and to intercept 
deserters. Just imagine to yourself one of the finest 

194 Letter from New York Island. 

of harbors, in which 1000 ships can ride, and also 
fancy the actual number of vessels all crowded with 
human beings, and surrounded at the same time with 
a vigilant enemy ! Think also of our enjoying the 
finest of weather ; and all of these troops, bound upon 
a mission on the success of which depends the welfare 
not only of England, but of this powerful and proud 
country ; and, again, remember that we are engaged 
upon an undertaking on which the eyes of the whole 
world are now fixed. So much regarding my sea- 

Now in regard to my stay on Staten, Long, and 
New York Islands. 

Staten-Island is a hilly country, covered with beau 
tiful forests composed mostly of a kind of fir-tree, the 
odor of which can be inhaled at a distance of two 
miles from land. The island itself, however, is but 
sparsely settled. The soil is fruitful. Peaches, chest 
nuts, apples, pears, grapes, and various kinds of nuts 
grow here in wild profusion, mingled with roses and 
blackberry bushes. The climate and soil are, without 
exception, the loveliest, healthiest, and most agreeable 
on the face of the globe ; and a person, were he so 
disposed, could easily lay here the foundations of a 
great fortune for his progeny should he invest a rea 
sonable sum in land. Just about this time everything 
is still in an uncivilized and poverty-stricken state, 
for the foraging parties of the rebels and the different 
encampments of his Majesty s troops have stripped 
the country of all the necessary articles of life. The 

Letter from New York Island. 195 

so called " Old and New-Town" consists of two houses 
scarcely 25 feet square, the walls and roofs of which 
are covered with boards. The soldiers have eaten up 
most of the horned cattle hereabouts, but what few 
are left are very good eating. The houses are miser 
able. The inhabitants are mostly descendants of 
Hollanders, and for this reason the German language 
is pretty well known here. The house of Colonel 
von Donop belongs to a person named Koch from 
Hanau. I have seen quite a number of blacks, who 
are just as free as the whites. On the whole, nearly 
everything here is the same as with us at home the 
same kinds of bushes and trees ; but as the soil is 
richer here, the leaves grow larger and the wood 
thicker. Staten-Island was during two months the 
only land in all North America which England held 
possession of ; that is, if I except Canada and New 
Scotland, her conquests during the last war. 

Long-Island is a beautiful island. It has a great 
number of meadows, orchards, fruit-trees of all de 
scriptions, and fine houses ; while cattle are still to be 
found in large numbers, notwithstanding the immense 
droves which the rebels carried off with them on their 
retreat. The inhabitants, with few exceptions, have 
deserted their residences. When we landed on the 
22d of August we marched through Gravesend and 
New Utrecht, and the same evening we entered 
Flatbush. I made a sketch of Flatbush, as we were 
here five days, and during our stay we had several 
encounters with the rebels. It was a beautiful vil- 

196 Letter from, New York Island. 

lage before these cut-throats burned down the greater 
part of it. There are still standing, however, several 
country residences. 

Newtown has several streets, Brookleein Kirk, etc., is 
a continuous, long street lined with trees and houses 
in close proximity to each other. Here are to be seen 
neat little houses surrounded by gardens, meadows, and 
fruit-trees of every variety. In Newtown are one 
Dutch Reformed and two English churches. New- 
town includes Freshbone and Little Battein, both con 
taining a few houses. Nearly all of the inhabitants of 
Freshbone are Quakers, who have a meeting-house. 
The Quakers are not rebels : on the contrary, they 
have publicly proclaimed in all of their gatherings and 
churches that whosoever went armed would lose their 
membership. In Jamaica-town there are three 
churches, viz., an English, a Presbyterian, and a Dutch 
Reformed. Quakers are not to be met with in this place. 
The market-town, " New-York ferry," is made up of a 
number of houses in a row, and mechanics and artisans 
are already beginning to thrive. I have made a sketch 
of it, because it is so nicely situated. The country 
around Jamaica is generally level and pleasant to the 
eye. From here a road leads to Hemstead, where 
lovely plains and patches of forest bordered by hillocks 
are to be seen. In fact, standing upon an elevation 
in the midst of the large and small Hemstead Plains, 
looking seaward towards the beach, the eye takes in 

o J 

one of the most charming landscapes imaginable. 
Hemstead is a church village," having an English 

Letter from New York Island. 197 

[i.e. Episcopal] and a Presbyterian church. It consists 
of a large extent of ground, although in Hemstead itself 
there are but few houses. The inhabitants are a rich and 
well-to-do people, as, indeed, are all the residents of 
Long-Island, for they possess a country s true wealth, 
viz., land. In fact, they are rich landed proprietors. A 
great many Quakers live here. Between Bush* and 
Newtown there are many houses, and also the village 
kirk,f which belongs to Newtown. 

The boundaries between King s and Queen s coun 
ties have been incorrectly given upon all the charts, 
even on the one belonging to Holland. The northern 
boundary-lines begin at the ocean,^ in the vicinity of 

* Flatbush probably, though it might have been Bush- 

f Or " Krick." On account of the ink being very pale, it is 
difficult for me to make out all the proper names. Note by 
Schlozer. Kirk, of course, is correct, and refers to the old 
Dutch church belonging to Newtown, and built about 1665. 
The first church built in N. Y. City was called " Gereformeede 
Kerch," and Governor Kief and three citizens were the first 
" kerk meesters." What a little bothered Schlozer, I sup 
pose, was the fact that the word Krick (Newtown Creek) is 
met with a little further on. 

J The writer wrote " ocean" purposely and not, as it might 
at first be inferred, through ignorance. In the journal of a 
Labadist (published in my " History of New York City"), who 
wrote intelligently of his visit to New York in 1679, occurs 
this minute: " The water by which it [Long Island] is sepa 
rated from the Mahatans is improperly called the East 
River ; for it is nothing else than an arm of the sea, beginning 

198 Letter from New York Island. 

Blackwell s Island ;* run through Krick,f with New- 
town, Freshbone, Little Battein J and Flushing on 
the left ; intersect the highway leading to Jamaica, 
and end in an inlet on Jamaica Bay. I have cor 
rected these errors and the location of New Utrecht 
upon my chart, and have made a new map of the 
western part of Long-Island, comprising the counties 
of Kings and Queens . The whole island forms an 
exquisite picture. You can ride nearly an English 
mile in these two counties without seeing a house. 
The inhabitants are generally sprightly, and roguishly 
inclined. The air here in September is most agree 
able. Winter begins in December and ends with the 
first or last of March. We often have heavy falls of 

in the bay on the west and ending in the sea on the east. 
After forming in this passage several islands, this water is as 
broad before the city as the Y before Amsterdam, but the 
ebb and flood tides are stronger." 

* It is really one mile south of that island. 

f This, of course, is Newtown Creek, or, as it was then 
called, " Maspeth Creek." From the head of Maspeth Creek 
the boundary ran " due south to certain marked trees on the 
south side of the Hills ;" then from " Newtown bounds at the 
s.w. edge of the Hills ; the n.w. corner [of Jamaica] begin 
ning at certain mark t trees at ye edge of ye said Hills, from 
whence to run in a south line to a certain river, that is to the 
east of Plunder s Neck, and bounded south by ye sea." 

\ Freshbone and Little Battein were small hamlets of 
perhaps half a dozen houses, on the left bank of Maspeth or 
Newtown Creek going up. They are now both within the 
bounds of Long Island City. 

Letter from New York Island. 199 

snow, which furnishes good sleighing every year. 
Sometimes the winters are wet ; but the summers are 
generally dry, except in the month of August, when 
thunder-storms are frequent. Tobacco is not cultivat 
ed in Kings County, although it is in Jamaica. Every 
one living here enjoys in time of peace an agreeable, 
uniform, and healthy life. The horned cattle are 
strong and plentiful. The products of the garden are 
the same as with us at home. The ladies on this island 
are not ugly, and upon the mainland are even said 
to be pretty. The easy in fact, I might say, the too 
easy life these people led caused them to become 
overbearing ; nevertheless, had it not been for the 
cabals in England, and especially in London, matters 
would not have been so bad as they are now. The 
more I look upon this country, with its lovely mead 
ows, its bountiful crops of corn and hemp, and its 
beautiful fruit-gardens, the more I envy the former 
happy inhabitants of this excellent land, and the more 
I pity those unhappy ones who are now suffering from 
the intrigues and secret envy of their fellow-citizens. 
I saw barns filled with the treasure of the husband 
man, but nowhere or at least but seldom did I meet 
with an inhabited house ; for nearly all had been en 
tirely destroyed by the war and the English. Peach 
and pear trees were more generally seen growing in 
the streets ; but pear-trees were not so plentiful. 

Blackwell s Island belongs to the island of New- 
York. It is a dull, barren piece of land, and is two 
English miles in length, by, in its widest part, a quar- 

2OO Letter from New York Island. 

ter of a mile broad. Free blacks live here, but there 
are in all only three houses. There are many blacks 
on New-York Island, but few of them are free. 

On the north lies Bahama,* or Passon s Island, beau 
tifully situated. It has meadows and fruit land, and 
some woods on the southwest side. 

Still further north lies Belle f Island, also a lovely 
spot. It had only one house, and even this has been- 
destroyed by the rebels. It lies just beyond Harlem,, 
with Westchester on the other side. It belongs to a 
Captain Montresor, of the English corps du gtnie,. 
who remained with the army, and is therefore often 
called Montresor s Island. J 

* Probably a misprint for Buchanan s Island, as it was 
called at that day. Schlozer see note ante says he was 
unable sometimes to make out the proper names in these 

f The " Bahama" and " Belle" Islands are now known as, 
Ward s and Randall s Islands. 

\ " Captain John Montresor [afterwards Colonel] purchased 
in 1772 an island near Harlem called Belle Isle. Since its 
purchase it has been known as Montresor s and as Randall s 
Island. He and his family lived on it during the British as 
cendancy in New York, until all the buildings and outhouses 
were burnt." Introduction to the Journal of Captain John 
Montr ^sor. The following is an entry in the above Journal : 
" 1 3th Jan. 1777: This night (Monday) my House and out 
houses, Barns and outhouses, on Montresor s Island, formerly 
called Belle-Isle, and afterwards Talbot s Island, near Haer- 
lem, and 8 miles from New York, was [sic] burnt by the 
Rebels." " Nov. 7th, 1772, is the date of the Deeds for Belle 

Letter from New York Island. 201 

The island of New York is the most beautiful isl 
and I have ever seen. No superfluous trunk, no use 
less twig, no unnecessary stalk, can here be found. 
Projecting fruitful hillocks, surrounded by orchards, 
meadows, and gardens full of fruit-trees, and single 
ones scattered over the hills, with houses attached, line 
both sides of the river, and present to the eye a beau 
tiful scene. The houses, which are two stories high 
and painted white, are encircled by a piazza, and have 

Isle, formerly Little Barn Island, and afterward Talbot s 
Island, and now purchased by me, John Montresor, on the 
above day and year. The first grant of this Island, com 
monly known by the name of Little Barn Island, was by 
Richard Nicolls, Esqr., first Governor of New York, onto 
Thomas Delavall, Esqr., Collector and Receiver General of 
the Customs in these parts Feb. the 3d, 1667, in the 2Oth 
year of his Majesty s reign." 

Captain John Montresor was the eldest son of Colonel 
James Montresor, who was Director-General of Engineers 
and lieutenant-colonel of the British army. Served under 
Abercrombie against Ticonderoga, and drew the plan of 
Fort Stanwix during the same summer in 1759. In Decem 
ber, 1775, he (Captain John) was made by George III. " Chief 
Engineer of America." He was present in May, 1 776, at, and 
acted as one of the managers of the celebrated ball called 
the " Mischianza" (gotten up by Major Andre"), which was 
given by the British officers to Sir William Howe in Phila 
delphia, on the eve of his departure for England. " He had 
charge of the fireworks and ball-room decorations, and was 
accompanied on that occasion by Miss Auchmuty, one of 
the half-sisters of Mrs. Montresor, whose mother had remar 
ried the Rev. Samuel Auchmuty, D.D., of New York. He 

202 Letter from New York Island. 

a weather-vane on top. They are also surrounded by 
beautiful walks, and are built and furnished in the 
best of taste. The Hudson has a strong current, and 
is salty fifteen miles inland. 

So much for this time from one who is always on 
guard, watching, investigating, and writing at spare 
moments. One word more. You have heard of the 
Huguenot war in France? Well, what there was 
Religion, is here Liberty fanaticism both ! 

was born April 6, 1736, at Gibraltar, and died at Portland 
Place, London, June 26, 1799. The name of Capt. Mon- 
tresor, also, is associated, through Mrs. Rowson s book, with 
the ill-fated Charlotte Temple (Stanley), whom rumor as 
signed as his mistress. It is probable, however, that the 
story never had more foundation than that given it by the 
gossipy articles in the partisan newspapers of the day. Capt. 
Montresor married at New York, March i, 1764, Frances 
Tucker, only daughter of Lieutenant Thos. Tucker of Ber 
muda, and a relative of Dr. Auchmuty, the rector, at that 
time, of Trinity Church, by whom he had ten children. 



RHODE-ISLAND, June 24, 1777. 

My last letter of April 5th from Portsmouth I hope 
you have received. I then informed you that Ensign 
and myself were together on the transport Prov 
idence, and that we would remain on that vessel until 
we reached America. In consequence, however, of 
Lieutenant being on board, who by his astound 
ing bragging is the most unbearable man in the world, 
it was impossible for us to get along. We therefore 
changed our minds the day before our departure on 
the 5th of April, and went with our officers on board 

the transport Lively, where we found Ensigns 

and . On this vessel, besides having congenial 

companions, we had much more beautiful and com 
modious staterooms ; and although the commander of 
the entire fleet had his separate sleeping-apartment, 
which took up much space, yet each of us also had 
his own sleeping-room, which could be locked; where 
as on board the Providence there was but one room 
for our whole party. 


204 Letter from Rhode Island. 

On the 7th of April, after waiting in vain for our 
chasseurs, we weighed anchor at four o clock in the 
morning and set sail ; our convoy being accompanied 
by the man-of-war Somerset, of 74 guns, on which 
was the English General * [Howe], who, it was 

* General Howe. In this connection it is interesting in 
these days of vandalism to learn that the Billopp Manor- 
house on Staten Island, opposite Perth Amboy, is still (1891) 
standing. The residence is near Tottenville, and was 
erected by Colonel Billopp upon land granted to him by 
Queen Anne. During the Revolution Lord Howe used it 
for his headquarters at one time. The history connected 
with the place is curious. Lord Howe, as mentioned in 
the text, wished to confer with the " rebels," and to ar 
range a settlement of difficulties. Benjamin Franklin, John 
Adams, and Edward Rutledge were the committee chosen. 
Several letters were exchanged between Howe and Franklin 
in relation to a place of meeting, which was fixed finally at 
the " old Billopp house." It was then a two-days journey 
from Philadelphia to Perth Amboy. The committee 
started, John Adams on horseback and Dr. Franklin and 
Mr. Rutledge in old-fashioned chairs. When they reached 
Perth Amboy Lord Howe s barge was there to ferry them 
across. He shook hands warmly with Franklin when he 
landed at Staten Island, and greeted the others cordially 
when Franklin introduced them. They all moved towards 
the house between lines of soldiery. One of the largest 
rooms of the Billopp mansion had been converted, with 
moss, vines, and branches, into a delightful bower, and there 
a collation of " good claret, good bread, cold ham, tongues, 
and mutton " was immediately served. After this Lord 
Howe opened the conference. He expressed his attach- 

Letter from Rhode Island. 205 

rumored, was empowered to make overtures of peace. 
There were, besides, ten transports with the 1260 
Anspach troops on board. 

On the 1 3th, a servant of an Anspach officer, having 
stolen a shirt from his master, and being afraid of 
punishment, jumped overboard. He was pulled out 
of the water dead. 

On the 26th one of the wives of our chasseurs was 

On the 2d of June we came in sight of land, a cir 
cumstance that caused a universal shout of joy. 

On the 3d, at four o clock in the afternoon, we en 
tered the harbor of New York, and cast anchor near 
the city. I am forced to admit, judging by its exterior 
appearance, that I have never seen such a beautiful 
country as that which greeted our eyes on entering 

ment to America and his gratitude for the honors bestowed 
upon his elder brother, who was killed at Lake George in 
the expedition against the French, eighteen years before, 
declaring that should America fall he should feel and lament 
it like the loss of a brother. Franklin bowed, and, smiling 
blandly, replied, " My lord, we will use our utmost endeavors 
to spare you that mortification." The conversation was 
conducted as among friends for four hours, but it amounted 
to nothing, except so far as it strengthened the patriots. 
The party separated with great show of courtesy, Howe 
saying, " I am sorry, gentlemen, that you have had the 
trouble of coming so far to so little purpose." 

* The news that married couples were among the German 
troops in America is always useful [i.e., as a matter for future 
reference]. Note by Schlozer. 

2o6 Letter from Rhode Island. 

this harbor, where on the left was New Jersey and on 
the right New York Island. 

On the 4th Ensign and I went into the city, 

and reported ourselves to General Heister. Now, to 
our great gratification, we, for the first time in many 
weeks, encamped on land, and with Auditor . 

On the 5th all our baggage was brought from the 
vessels, and the regiments were quartered in an old 
church.* We also were obliged to spend a night in 
it, or rather among the tombstones, as we were unable 
to find another place for our equipage or any other 
shelter for ourselves if a night in a graveyard could 
be called by that term. This experience gave us our 
first conception of what is meant by war in America ! 

On the 6th our recruits were drafted into the differ 
ent regiments ; and we finally took up our quarters in 
the house of a rebel, that had been deserted by its 

By these details, my dear brother, you may in a 
faint degree judge of our present situation ; and that 
it is not now as it was in the last war, when the motto 
was, " Farmer, work, or thou wilt receive blows." In 
fact, let me tell you it is hard to live here. One is 
never sure of finding what he needs, and even should 
he be so fortunate as to stumble across it, it is terri 
bly dear. In all my life I never heard of such high 

* The old Dutch church corner of Nassau and Cedar Streets 
afterward used as the Post-Office, and the site of which is 
now (1891) occupied by the Mutual Life Insurance Com 

Letter from Rhode Island. 207 

prices. For instance, a loaf of bread (made of wheat, 
for corn is rarely raised here) and which at home costs 
one albus* costs here 5 ; one pound of butter, 18 ; 
one pound of meat (mutton or beef), 10 ; a bottle of 
poor wine, i reichs-thaler ; one pound of snuff, 2 
reichs-thaler and 8 silber-groschen ; a pair of boots, 
20 gulden ; a yard of indifferent linen, 16 albus; a yard 
of the poorest woollen stuff, i reichs-thaler and 16 
albus, etc., etc. 

Now, in order to give you an idea of America, or, 
rather, that small portion which we still hold, I may 
not omit to say that it is really a beautiful, lovely 
land, and quite level. New York, especially, is one 
of the handsomest and pleasantest seaports I have 
ever seen ; although that part of the city which lies 
nearest the sea has been recently burned. The houses, 
which are in the English style, regular and well built, 
are not only of a palatial character, but are most 
elegantly furnished and papered inside. It is there 
fore a pity that this country, which, by the way, is 
exceedingly fertile, should be inhabited by such brutish 
people people who have been brought into their 
present position by sheer luxury and extravagance, 
and who owe their downfall solely to their own 
haughtiness. Any one who is disposed to take their 
part, and to believe that they have sufficient cause to 
rebel, should for a time as a punishment live among 
them and become acquainted with their condition. 

* An albus is a little less than a groschen. 

2o8 Letter from Rhode Island. 

Here a man, even of the meanest station, provided 
he will only do something, can live as well as the 
richest. Such a visitor would soon talk in a differ, 
ent strain, and would see, as I do, that it is not want, 
but frivolity and extravagance, that is the cause of 
this rebellion. Although the greater portion of the 
people are descended from wandering ragamuffins 
ousted from other places, yet they are so haughty here, 
and put on such airs, especially in New York, that 
their like cannot be found in the entire world. For 
example, the women who, by the way, are nearly all 
good-looking, no matter whether they are the wives 
of shoemakers, tailors, day-laborers (of these there 
are very few, since nearly every one has a few negro 
slaves in his service) are dressed in calico, muslin, 
and silk robes. This extravagance in dress, which 
daily increases, is caused by the inhabitants constantly 
taking in such large amounts of money from the troops ; 
for no one would dream of taking a single grain of 
salt from them unless they paid them for it. 

There is likewise nothing more vexatious than the 
fact that by an express order of the king the soldiers 
are obliged to treat this people, who are in reality 
all rebels, with the greatest courtesy so much so, 
that not a grain of salt may be taken from them 
without compensation. The poor soldiers, accordingly, 
would die of starvation if the ship provisions were not 
furnished to them for 3 pence per diem (28 kellers), 
viz., one pound of zwieback [toasted bread or biscuit], 
salted but almost uneatable pork, a few musty peas, 

Letter Jrom Rhode Island. 209 

some oatmeal, and a little rum. With this diet they 
are forced to support life, although a good many are 
made sick by it. 

On the i4th June, we (the recruits) embarked on a 
vessel bound for Rhode-Island, where one English 
and four German regiments are at present stationed. 

On the afternoon of the I5th, we set sail, and passed 
on that day a place called Hell-gate a spot fraught 
with the utmost danger to life and navigation. 

On the 1 8th, we anchored off Newport-Island; on 
the 1 9th, I went to the town of Newport, the capital 
of Rhode-Island, and in great haste visited my sick 
brother; and on the 2ist, we went into camp, which 
is four hours* distant from the city, at the end of the 
island, and directly opposite the rebels. This island 
is only four hours long by two broad, and is sur 
rounded on all sides by the rebels, from whom it is 
only separated by a river three times as wide as the 
Werra. On this account, and also because they can 
fire shot almost into our camp, we are kept in a con 
tinual state of alarm. Again, as little or nothing is 
raised on the island in the way of vegetables the in 
habitants living chiefly on cattle the outlook for us 
in the way of fresh provisions is very poor, especially 
as the rebels have taken with them all their live-stock. 
Meat costs here 12 albus a pound, while for a small 
mess of green peas (which will barely satisfy one 
person) we pay 7 silver groschen. 

* In German the word " hour " is often used as a measure 
of distance, and signifies one league, i.e., five miles. 

2 1 o Letter from Rhode Island. 

On the 23d of June (for having no tent I could 
not stay in the camp) I took up my quarters in a farm 
house a quarter of an hour distant from the camp 
and near the water, in full range of the enemy s guns. 
The owner of the farm-house allowed me to occupy it 
more from fear that it might otherwise be taken pos 
session of by English officers than through any cour 
tesy to me. The farmer s name is Thomas Volkner, 
and his religion is that of a Baptist a sect which is 
so numerous hereabout that its members cannot be 
counted. This sect does not have its children bap 
tized. The greater portion of the inhabitants who are 
still here, however, are Quakers, who have neither the 
rite of baptism nor a minister. They accordingly go 
into a church and there wait for the Holy-Spirit to 
come and tell them what they shall say. If the Holy- 
Spirit fails to move them, which, by the way, happens 
very often, they silently return home, for they never 

On the 24th of June, two English officers made 
their appearance and proposed to occupy my room. 
As I was the prior occupant, however, they were un 
able either by threats or persuasions to accomplish 
their object, especially as I showed them the door with 
my drawn sword. 

As regards the domestic products, they are the same 
as with us, the climate being similar except that it is 
much warmer. The garden vegetables are also ex 
actly like ours, only the species are fewer in number., 
The trees, however, are somewhat different, sassafras, 

Letter from Rhode Island. 2 1 1 

cracknut, etc., which I have never before seen, being 
quite abundant. 

As to animals, especially domestic ones, which I 
have more particularly observed, I find no difference, 
except that the horses are smaller and lighter, and are 
therefore fleeter and quicker in their movements. On 
the contrary, oxen and cows are nearly twice as heavy, 
and proportionately larger. Birds, excepting swal 
lows, are different from ours, and twice as beautiful. 
There are neither sparrows nor moles in this place. 
With this I bring my letter to a close. 

P. S. In case any one should ask the reason why I 
have said nothing regarding the progress of the war, 
you can answer him that it is because I know no more 
about it now than I did when I left Germany, except 
those small skirmishes which signify little. So far as 
we know, nothing of consequence has taken place, 
except that the frigate Unicorn to-day brought in two 
rebel ships. 


NEW YORK ISLAND, Dec. 7, 1777. 

The news of the capture of the two forts on Mud 
and Red-Bank in Delaware is no doubt known to you 
by this time, also the friendly reception of Burgoyne s 
army. Howe s and Washington s armies are stationed 
opposite each other at Philadelphia, the army of the 
latter having received considerable reinforcements. 

It was here (New York) that several hundred peo 
ple recently took an oath to fire the city and roast us, 
bag and baggage. Quite a large body of rebels were 
invited to cross the North River and look at the fun 
and see the roasting ! The kind Being who watches 
over the German and English armies, however, or 
dained it otherwise. He caused the secret plan to be 
unmasked, and without doubt the governor or his rep 
resentative will be hung. 

If the rebels keep their word, we may expect more 
visits from them, either here or in the vicinity. The 
two Anspach regiments are now in Philadelphia. 
They were, as I surmise from reading yesterday s 


Letter from a Field-chaplain. 2 1 3 

paper, upon a cattle-hunting expedition under the 
command of Lord Cornwallis. Four thousand men 
brought 800 head into Philadelphia. Without doubt 
our esteemed field-chaplain will also have his share of 
the sheep, and I am the same as in Europe, etc. 


IN 1778. 




Your dear letter of the 25th of May, addressed to 
Lieutenant H. in New York, or Captain H. in 
Philadelphia," reached me on the 4th of November. 

My present ideas of America have greatly changed 
from those that I expressed in my last letters. At 
the present time I can form no mental picture of an 
earthly paradise without including in it the Jerseys 
and Long Island : not so, however, with Pennsylvania. 
If the Hon. Count Penn were to offer me the whole 
county of Pennsylvania, with ^ the condition that I 
should live here the rest of my life, I hardly think I 
should accept it. And this is the land of promise the 
land where milk and honey flows, and which so many 
have praised to us ! You are doubtless aware that as 
each North American province has hitherto main- 


Letter front Philadelphia. 2 1 5 

tained a separate existence and been governed by laws 
of its own, it must be judged separately. The packet- 
boat will start to-morrow : so now for a few hasty de 
scriptions of the country and its climate. 

Among one hundred people, not only in Philadel 
phia but in the entire vicinity, you will not find one 
with a healthy color. This is caused by the unwhole 
some air and the bad water. In one way this cannot 
be ascribed to the zone in which it lies, for Pennsyl 
vania is in one of the healthiest : rather is it to be 
attributed to the forests, morasses, and mountains, 
which partly prevent the atmosphere from expanding 
and in a measure poison the air, thus producing an 
unhealthy climate. Nothing is more common than to 
have a fever once a year, eruptions like the itch, etc. 
Nor have I met anywhere with more crazy people 
than in this town. Only yesterday, while dining with 
a gentleman, a third person came into the room and 
whispered in my ear, "Take care : this gentleman is a 
madman !" The truth is, however, that nearly all of the 
people are quietly mad a sort of mental aberration 
caused by a compression rather than a heating of the 
blood. Very often the people are cured. One of 
the reasons for this extraordinary state of things is 
that none of the necessaries of life possesses the same 
nutritious properties as our own. The milk, for 
example, is not half as rich, and the bread contains 
but little nourishment. The difference between the 
quality of thelood brought from Jersey and that from 

216 Letter from Philadelphia. 

Pennsylvania to the market in Philadelphia is very 

The cold in winter and the heat in summer are quite 
moderate, but the thunder-storms in summer and the 
moist ill-smelling air in the spring and autumn are un 
bearable. Should a heavy mist arise on a summer s 
morning, saturating everything with moisture, you 
may be sure of having a thunder-storm in the after 
noon. If on a winter s morning you find the trees 
covered with frost, it will rain in the afternoon. Such 
phenomena, which are of daily occurrence, are only to 
be met with in this country. 

As it is with vegetables here, which attain only half 
their growth, so it is with animals, rabbits, partridges, 
peacocks, etc., being but half-grown ; while the meat 
of wild-game tastes like the flesh of domestic fowls. 

One of the few good results of the war is the exter 
mination of the forests, by which the air has become 
purer. One man named Hamilton, a resident of this 
city, cut down the trees on 1500 acres of land for the 
use of the hospital, and he had the patriotism not long 
since to make the remark in company, that " it was a 
very good thing for the land !" The fertility of the 
soil is such that two crops can be sowed and harvested 
yearly, but the fruit is not as good as with us. The 
greater part of America is rich in minerals, especially 
^ the strip in which we manoeuvred last summer, viz., 
on the Elk River, Brandywine Cuik [Creek], Valley 
Hills, and the Schuylkill. There are plenty of trees. 
For instance, there are seven varieties of pine, 

Letter from Philadelphia. 217 

without counting those belonging to the same 
species, viz., sassafras, cedars, and nut-trees, which, by 
the way, are what we generally burn on our hearths 
and camp-fires. The land, moreover, produces corn, 
wheat, oats, flax, hemp, Indian-corn, and potatoes 
which, however, are not as good as those grown in 
Holland, although this is their mother-country. They 
also raise beets and garden vegetables of all kinds, 
but these do not attain the same size as ours. The 
fruits likewise are different. The grape cannot be 
come thoroughly ripe on account of the mist I have 
before mentioned. Pears are scarce, and the apples 
lack flavor. 

You have doubtless read in the newspapers about 
the stockades which cut up the land into so many sec 
tions that it is simply impossible for cavalry to ma 
noeuvre on the plains. These defences, which are 
wooden palisades encircling acres of land, are put up 
as a protection against the cattle ; for every one turns 
his cattle (horses, sheep, cows, etc.) loose, without 
herders. After an acre has yielded its crops the 
farmer drives his cattle upon it, alternating from one 
acre to another, and hence each acre has its own 
palisades. However, an old German farmer living two 
miles from Philadelphia assured me that the one and 
a half feet of ground that would be lost by digging 
trenches and planting hedges would cost him more. 
Another reason why hedges are not planted is that 
they will not grow. The thornbush cannot be raised 
on account of an insect the name of which I have 

2i8 Letter from Philadelphia. 

forgotten ; while the willow will not flourish every 
where. At Hollander s Cuik I saw a newly planted 
grove of that tree. 

Pigs are as fine in these parts as the best Holsteins, 
for the woods contain the best of mast, upon which 
those animals feed the entire year. Guinea-hens are 
abundant, though not as numerous as in the Jerseys 
and Long-Island. The Welsh-hen is classified as a 
wild bird, and can be found in the woods in flocks, like 
partridges. Sheep are plenty ; but as the farmer drives 
them into the forest he ruins their wool. Notwith 
standing this, however, he sells the skins for 18 shil 
lings in York money. Ducks and geese are the same 
and as good as with us, but no better. You cannot 
imagine the immense swarms of flies that are to be 
met with in this part of the world. Rabbits, black 
grouse, and partridges are only half as large as at home ; 
while bears and wolves may still be met with in Tol- 
pahaky,* 36 miles from Philadelphia, to which city 
those animals are often brought. A joint of bear s 
meat is a great delicacy. 

There are also plenty of snakes. The large black 

* Mr. J. G. Rosengarten, Jr., Dr. Charles O. Abbott, and 
Professor O. Seidensticker, of Philadelphia, courteously in 
form me that the writer evidently refers to Tulpehockcn, in 
Berks County, Pa., a name signifying " the place of the 
turtle," although the distance is given incorrectly, as it is 
much further. Bears are even now found within 36 miles of 
Philadelphia, on the west, north, and east, and in Southern 
New Jersey, and fifty years ago they were plentiful. 

Letter from Philadelphia. 2 1 9 

snake is yet found along the Schuylkill, as well as near 
our quarters. Only recently a farmer while chopping 
wood was chased by one of them, but a neighbor 
killed it with a club. Nothing, however, can be more 
terrible than the rattlesnake. Its length is from 12 
to 1 6 feet ; and its glance, the people living here be 
lieve, is capable of killing a person. Several years ago 
a farmer living in my neighborhood lost a relative in 
this manner. He had been hunting, and seeing a 
bear standing motionless before him, he took aim and 
laid him low. But scarcely had he reached the bear 
when he himself seemed transfixed, and then fell 
over dead. All this was caused by a rattlesnake that 
lay coiled up in a high tree. None are to be found 
nearer Philadelphia than Tolpahaky ; though between 
Elk-Ferry and the head of the Elk, where we were 
quartered for three days, there were some. So much 
about the country. In my next letter I will give you 
the characteristics of the people, their culture, etc. 

That the domestic animals are not as good as with 
us at home, may be accounted for by the habit the 
people have here of allowing them to roam at large 
during the winter and summer. 

Recently I wrote you that no white glass was manu 
factured in America. In Manheim (Pennsylvania), 
however, a factory was started two years before the war. 
This factory, in common with the porcelain factories, 
in fact, all the arts and industries, seem to be pros 
trated, and all on account of the high wages. 

Do you wish to know where I am living ? If so, 

22O Letter from Philadelphia. 

take a translation of " Barnaby s Travels,"* open it at 
page 90, and read : " from here the road leading to the 
city was lined with country-seats, pleasure-gardens, 
and orchards in full bloom." Among these " country- 
seats, pleasure-gardens, and orchards" the highly- 
praised rifle corps have their quarters ; and here, upon 
the Schuylkill, midst the scenes that Barnaby de 
scribes, I intend to do picket duty to-morrow. It 
seems to me that this sketch is plainer than that drawn 
by many an engineer. 

* Andrew Barnaby, an English divine, born 1732 at Ash- 
fordby, Leicestershire ; died March 9, 1812. He came to 
America soon after 1757, and, in 1776, published "Travels 
through the Middle Settlements of North America, in 1759- 
60." In 1786 he was preferred to the Archdeanery of 
Leicester. He also wrote a volume of sermons, and a 
" Journal of a Tour to Corsica in 1766." 


PHILADELPHIA, May 7, 1778. 

Excuse me for writing so briefly at this time. It is 
very warm to-day, and to-morrow our gracious friend 
sets sail. 

You can, however, obtain further details of our 
present situation from the enclosed.* So far as can 
be seen, things are about in the same condition as when 
I last wrote. We are quietly sitting here and await 
ing events. 

Meanwhile, the lovely summer is approaching, which 
will have the effect, perhaps, of making it pretty hot 
for both armies. How you will be pleased with the 
exquisite German in the State Courier ! Our loved 
mother-tongue is completely Anglicized in this colony, 
and will soon be transformed into what may be called 
"the Pennsylvania language," which will be unrecog 
nizable by either Germans or English. 

* This was a copy of a Philadelphia newspaper for Wed 
nesday, the 6th May, 1778, called The \ Pennsylvania State 
Courier \ of current \ Weekly News. \ Published by Christo 
pher Saur, Jr., and Peter Saur, in Second st., Philadelphia. 
It contains accounts of many atrocious incidents then hap- 
pening, which are not here given, as the file can be referred to. 


222 Letter from Philadelphia. 

Up to the present time my experience here makes 
me well contented. My landlord is an arch rebel, an 
apothecary, and a native of Nuremburg. He swears 
that I will have to stay in Philadelphia, and demon 
strates to a hair s-breadth that the king is a tyrant. 
The city is beautiful, the country agreeable, and the 
inhabitants are good fellows for your money. 

We hear that Mr. [General] Putnam was lately tried 
before a court-martial and honorably acquitted of all 
charges brought against him. The principal one was 
leniency towards prisoners a sentiment he seems to 
have imbibed years ago, when he had the honor to 
serve his Majesty for several years in the late [French 
and Indian] war. 

From Chester we have received the following news, 
which it is believed is true. At the beginning of this 
week two men had caught a good mess of fish and 
were dividing them in a ware-house near the water 
front, when two horsemen rode up and inquired of a 
woman living near by what they were doing ? While 
the woman was still talking with them, one of the men 
had put his share of the fish into a cart and was driv 
ing away, when one of these heroes rode up to him and 
asked where he was going with the fish ? The answer 
was, " Home." Whereupon, the rider rode up to the 
man and without any hesitation shot him dead on the 
spot ; and so close was he to the poor fellow, that the 
flash from the pan of his pistol set his coat on fire. 
Meanwhile his companion rode up to the ware-house 
where the other unfortunate fisherman had remained 

Letter from Philadelphia. 223 

with his fishes, and cursing him for a Tory, shot him 
down also, although surrounded by a number of 

We have also received verified news from Whit- 
paine Township, Philadelphia County, that a certain 
preacher of the Reformed Church, named Wickel, who 
had formerly held forth in Bohemian and Wenzen* 
churches, has recently given up preaching and turned 
street foot-pad. As a preacher he had been in the 
habit of wickedly reviling the king and his govern 
ment, and had likewise exhorted his hearers to re 
main steadfast to the rebellion and to turn street 
robbers. (His recompense, no doubt, will be great.) 
Whether his congregation did not obey him in every 
thing, whether he became jealous that others became 
rich by following his exhortations while he remained 
poor, or whether he desired to learn and do both things 
himself, is not known. Let it suffice to say that this 
" buck" waylays people on the roads to and from the 
city, and relieves them of their valuables. Take care 
of yourself, and believe me, etc. 

The Wenzens, who are descendants from the Sclave tribe 
of Wendts, are a sect near Berlin, which for several hundred 
years have preserved their own peculiar forms of worship, cus 
toms, habits, costumes, etc., unchanged. They are Lutherans 
in religion. Their dress especially that of the women is 
exceedingly picturesque. It consists of short petticoats of 
various brilliant colors, and a white cap with large flaps 
standing out like wings on either side. They never marry 
out of their own sect. 




Several weeks ago, the army being ordered to put 
on board the ships their unnecessary baggage, I sent, 
among other articles, all my books, journals, charts, 
sketches, and note-books. For this reason you will 
not in this letter receive anything from me in relation 
to my winter campaign. 

Philadelphia is, in its way, a very pretty city. 
Ninety-four years ago not a house was to be seen, and 
now there are between twenty-five hundred to three 
thousand. Indeed the fire-insurance companies have 
policies on 1993. This will give you an idea of the 
growth of the place. The rectangular streets and the 
sameness of the houses which, as a rule, are but two 
stories high, though a few are three stories present a 
laughable appearance. After we had had possession 
of the city for four weeks, and when the vessels arrived 
from New York, everything put on such a bustling air, 
that, as the inhabitants said, one would not have known 


Letter from Philadelphia. 225 

the city in time of peace. Two out of every three 
houses contain shops (not shops like those in Ham 
burg), but similar to those of G sche. A broad stone 
placed at the side [front] of the houses makes walking 
very comfortable ; and I must acknowledge that the ar 
rangement of the streets is better than in Gottingen, 
The gutters do not empty directly upon the stones ; 
consequently, in rainy weather, when you need these 
stones the most, you are not compelled to leave the 
sidewalks and wade about in the middle of the street. 
In the summer almost e very t householder stretches a 
piece of canvas across two upright poles placed on the 
street, and thus you are enabled to walk in the shade. 

The merchant, or rather the shopkeeper, whose 
trade formerly was confined within narrow limits, is a 
laughable creature. He can only be compared with 
the librarian of a circulating library. For instance, 
should certain wares be in fashion and have a great 
sale in England, he will push them in Philadelphia, 
although he may know nothing about them ! Re 
cently, while walking in Second Street, I ran across a 
tobacco-dealer who had painted on a swinging-sign a 
German and English inscription. The English one 
read as follows : " Tobacco sold here as good as the 
best imported ;" while the German one read: " Tobacco 
sold here as good as the best of English." 

Mechanics and artisans are very scarce. The ablest 
mechanics are hatters, shoemakers, and tailors. Of 
artisans, the best, and I may say the only ones, are sad 
dlers and goldsmiths. Workers in ivory, steel, iron, 

226 Letter from Philadelphia. 

stucco-work, bone, embroidery, silk, gold and silver 
ware are entirely unknown. All of those articles are 
sent on here by the English ; and, in fact, whatever 
they choose to send is most welcome. 

In connection with all of this I may mention the 
unbearable self-conceit of the Americans, and espe 
cially the Philadelphians, who imagine that no country 
is more beautiful, fortunate, rich, or prosperous than 
their own ; and this, too, although it is still in its in 
fancy. The reason for this scarcity of mechanics and 
artisans is easily given. Wages are so high that goods 
cannot be sold at a price sufficiently remunerative to 
get back the outlay of money for work performed. A 
man, for instance, importing goods from England can 
therefore sell more cheaply than a merchant here man 
ufacturing his own goods. Why workmen s wages are 
so high can also be explained. Journeymen are diffi 
cult to be obtained simply because they can make a* 
more agreeable and easy living by f olio wi ng agriculture. 
If a man works three hours a day at the latter occupa 
tion, he has twenty-one hours remaining in which he 
can sleep, yawn, breakfast, promenade, gossip, etc. 
He cannot, however, lead this blissful life in the work 
shop.* You can therefore judge for yourself what 

* Compare the above with Genovesi Burgerl., GLknonomic, 
p. 139, chapter 15. This explanation seems to make clear 
why among the ancient Hebrews, where agriculture was in 
a most flourishing state, the fine-arts did not seem to pros 
per. Every Pennsylvanian can easily become a farmer or a 

Letter from Philadelphia. 227 

the future of American culture will be. As long as 
there is enough land to be had the peasant will not be 
come an artisan.* 

landed proprietor ; and every Hebrew was obliged to be one 
according to the Mosaic laws. Note by Schlozer. 

* In this respect, times seem to be greatly changed. 
Now our farms are nearly deserted, and large portions of 
the land untilled, because farmers sons rush to the cities for 
employment, no matter of what kind, so long as they can be 
residents of a city seemingly the height of their ambition. 


NEWPORT, RHODE ISLAND, Sept. 8, 1778. 
We are now in an extremely deplorable, and, in fact, 
a very dubious situation ; and at present our only 
pleasure consists in receiving news from home. Since 
the 29th of July, on which day the French fleet ap 
peared off the harbor and landed 25,000 rebels on the 
island, we have been in a most desperate state of mind. 
We supposed as a matter of course that we should be 
taken prisoners ; and although, thank God, we have 
been spared that misfortune, our prospects in regard 
to fresh vegetables and meat are very uncertain. We 
need not expect any fresh food whatever for at least 
fourteen days ; and meanwhile we will have to exist on 
dried peas, rice, and salt provisions. We wish most 
heartily that we could leave this island and again 
see Germany. In the last engagement we lost in 
Hessians 105 men in killed, wounded, and prisoners.* 

* The engagement here referred to was the action of 
Quaker and Turkey-Hill, which occurred on the 2Qth of 
August, 1778. An attempt by the British to gain the rear of 
the Americans and cut off their retreat brought on a gen 
eral action, in which from twelve to fifteen hundred of the 


Letter from Rhode Island. 229 

latter were engaged. The British line " was finally broken, 
after a severe engagement, in attempts to take the redoubt 
on the American right ; and they were driven back in great 
confusion to Turkey-Hill, leaving many of their dead and 
wounded on the field." The American loss was thirty killed 
and one hundred and thirty-two wounded, and forty-four 
missing. The British lost in killed and wounded two hun 
dred and ten, with twelve missing. According to the above 
writer, therefore, exactly half of this loss was borne by the 
Hessians. " Lossing s Field-Book of the Revolution" con 
tains an excellent picture of the scene of this engagement, 
from a print in the Gentleman s Magazine. 


SAVANNAH IN GEORGIA, Jan. 16, 1779. 

You have, I suppose, received my last letter from 
New York. In it I announced the fact that I had 
been ordered on board, together with those who had 
received their discharge from the regiments of Von 
Wollwarth and Von Wissenbach. Now, however, I 
am prepared to give you a short description of this 
route of ours, or, rather, of my fourth sea-voyage. 

Every one can understand that it is quite disagree 
able to go promenading upon the ocean especially 
at a time of year like the present. On the 6th of 
November we embarked ; and on the 8th, we sailed 
from New- York for Staten-Island. Here had gathered 
the fleet, which consisted of between 46 to 50 vessels. 
Among them were a war-ship named " Phoenix," carry 
ing 44 guns, and commanded by Commodore Hyde 
Parker, Jr.; the 24-gun frigate, " Fowey ;" the " Vigi 
lant," having the same number of guns, but consisting of 
i8-|and 24-pounders ; a row-galley {Ruder-Galere), and 
other variously armed sloops. The troops were com 
manded by Lieutenant-Colonel Campbell of the 7ist 


Letter from Savannah. 231 

Scottish Regiment ; and the entire corps consisted of 
about 3500 men, which make up the following regi 
ments, viz., the above-mentioned 7ist Regiment, of 
two battalions ; Wollwarth and Wissenbach, of the two 
battalions of Langry ; the third battalion of Skinner ; 
and the New York Volunteers. The last-mentioned is 
a corps only recently organized in America. Woll- 
warth s regiment filled three vessels, viz., the "Alicia," 
on which were one major, three lieutenants, two en 
signs, one regimental-quartermaster, and 200 men, 
and myself; the " Union," and the "Venus." Wis- 
senbach s filled the " Nancy," " Howtown," and the 
" Minerva." 

On the 1 2th November, as soon as the necessary 
orders regarding the signals and the disembarking, etc., 
had been distributed, we weighed anchor, and about 
one o clock in the afternoon got under way, wind and 
weather being good. About five o clock in the after 
noon we again cast anchor at Sandy Hook, near the 
light-house. While riding at anchor we encountered 
on the 1 3th, a strong wind, which so increased in vio 
lence on the 1 4th and i5th, and caused such havoc 
among the fleet, that the commander was obliged on 
the 1 6th, to sail back again to Staten-Island with the 
entire fleet. A number of vessels lost their anchors; 
two of them were driven out to sea ; and one was 
dashed to pieces on the shore. The ship " Howtown" 
lost her bowsprit, through colliding with another ves 
sel which had also lost her fastenings during the night, 
and both were only separated with much difficulty. 

232 Letter from Savannah. 

During all this trouble a number of Scots were drowned. 
The " Alicia" lost only her anchor. We now had to 
ride at anchor until everything had been put to rights. 
Wissenbach s men meanwhile were taken from the 
* Howtown," and put on board the ship " Friendship." 
The " Betsey," which had been driven ashore, was 
again got afloat ; but as she was damaged, another 
vessel took her place. During this interval Regi 
mental Quartermaster K and myself started to 

spend several days in New York, astonishing our 
friends by our appearance, as they believed that by 
this time we were far out at sea. 

On the 27th of November, everything had again 
been made " ship-shape ;" and on the same day the frig 
ate " Roebuck" and a large East-Indiaman with four 
other ships joined us. On the " Roebuck" was Lord 
Carlisle, and on the Indiaman, William Eden, Esq., 
of whom, perhaps, you may have heard something in 
Gottingen. Both are royal commissioners, who have 
been sent over here to make overtures of peace. 
The rebels, however, will have nothing to do with 

To-day, the 27th November, we left Sandy Hook, 
where we arrived last evening. Up to the 3ist, we 
were so fortunate as to have a favorable wind, with 
only occasional rough weather. On the ist of Decem 
ber we had beautiful and in fact extraordinarily warm 
weather. Towards evening a very fierce wind arose, 
since which time we have had such violent storms, that 
especially on the third day out, one could neither hear 

Letter from Savannah. 233 

nor see anything occurring around us. .It was indeed 
terrible. We could fasten nothing securely ; trunks 
and portmanteaus were thrown about promiscuously; 
while each moment you were in danger of being 
thrown out of bed and dashed against the floor. For 
fourteen days we were unable to sleep, nor could we 
during that time either eat or drink anything in a decent 
manner. We also cut many comical figures, and pre 
sented, I doubt not, many ludicrous postures, before 
we were able to restore our equilibrium. It was in 
deed funny ! With one arm you held on to the bed 
stead, at the same time reeling around like a drunken 
man. Meanwhile, the rain continued incessantly; 
and, as we drew nearer the south, the weather became 
so unbearably warm that we were obliged to open all 
of our windows [port-holes] and strip ourselves to the 
skin. The sea appeared at one time all mountains 
and at another all valleys, the foam giving them the 
appearance of being constantly covered with a mantle 
of snow ; while the waves seemed to fight among 
themselves as to which should be the first to dash 
against and overwhelm our ship. It was indeed most 
terrific the sailors themselves saying that they, in 
all their experience, had never seen the like. With 
each succeeding storm some of the vessels disap 
peared from view, a circumstance that obliged us to 
lay-to for a day or two till they were again in sight ; 
and in the midst of this dreadful gale one of the wan 
derers finally made her appearance. But, notwith 
standing all this, most of us continued well and in 

234 Letter from Savannah. 

good spirits ; and, occasionally, we were favored with 
very laughable scenes as we saw the actions of the 
women and soldiers. 

At last, on the i6th of December, the commodore 
signalled for a pilot. We found ourselves in forty fath 
oms of water, which already looked darker than sea- 
water. A violent wind again arose on the I7th, driv 
ing us and ten other ships (one of which had on board 
the agent of the fleet) away from the convoy, towards 
the land, which our sailors spied from the mast-head. 
It was the coast of Carolina, not far from Charlestown 
[Charleston]. The rebels also may have discerned our 
fleet ; for hardly had we turned about to search for the 
missing vessels when thick columns of smoke shot 
up into the air at several places. These are their sig 
nals when they expect an enemy. In the evening we 
again came up with our convoy, which still consists of 
38 ships. 

Up to the 2oth, the wind and weather were fair, 
though very warm. To-day we bought a pig from the 
captain of our ship for six guineas. It weighed 120 
pounds. We at once made some very good Hessian 
sausages, and also regaled ourselves with pudding- 

The 2ist, we again saw land, but still in the vicinity 
of Carolina. On the 23d we arrived in the neighbor 
hood of Georgia, and at last, about five o clock in the 
evening, cast anchor quite deeply into the sea, in eleven 
fathoms of water. On the 24th, we weighed anchor 
and sailed towards the Savannah River, which we at 

Letter from Savannah. 235 

first took to be Port-Royal. Soon afterwards we saw 
the light-house, and about one o clock in the afternoon 
we anchored, and were safe from all storms. The 
rebels, who were in possession of the city of Savannah, 
again made their usual signals. On the 26th, a num 
ber of vessels, which had been driven away from the 
fleet while at sea, arrived. We learned that a ship 
which had been driven from Sandy Hook to sea had 
entered the St. John s River in Florida, and had lost 
all her masts in a storm. Two ships having horses on 
board, and which had been driven away during the 
second storm, and that every one supposed to be lost 
or captured, are said to have arrived at St. Augustine. 
On December 28th, orders were given to disembark. 
Accordingly, about twelve o clock, we sailed up the Sa 
vannah River towards the city, but on account of the 
ebb-tide we anchored about 6 miles from Savannah. 
On the 2Qth, the troops were carried on flatboats to 
wards the city, and landed not far from it. Meanwhile, 
the rebels had posted themselves upon elevations and 
in houses, and a Scottish captain was immediately 
killed. The enemy, which mustered not more than 
800 men, were commanded by a general named Howe. 
They did not, however, make a long stand. Our loss 
was 20 killed and wounded, among whom were two 
of Wdllwarth s men. . The rebel loss consisted of 80 
killed and wounded, and 400 prisoners. Their leader, 
General Howe, with the survivors started up the 
Savannah River towards Ebenezer. Twelve cannon, 
a large number of magazines, and several ships (among 

236 Letter from Savannah. 

them a French vessel carrying 22 guns) were captured. 
The regimental quartermaster and myself remained 
upon the ship. 

On the 3ist, we started for the city, and took pos 
session of advocate Farley s house, in which we found 
a fine library. 

Savannah, now forty years old, lies in latitude 32, 
and has about 600 houses, for the most part lightly built. 
The chief commerce of the inhabitants of whom, 
by the way, few could be seen is rice, indigo, and 
sago. Most of the inhabitants had run away with the 
rebels, and had as a general thing either buried their 
valuables or taken them into the interior of the country. 
The finest furniture, counters of banking-houses, ma 
hogany tables and chairs, were smashed into bits and 
lay scattered about the streets. Indeed, it was a most 
pitiful sight. Within gunshot of the city is a hand 
some barrack built by the rebels. In it the Hessian 
regiments are quartered. No stones can be seen here 
nothing, in fact, but white sand. The latter is piled 
up so high that in going through it you experience the 
same feeling as if you went through fallen snow a 
foot deep. At the present time (January) it is so 
warm that no fire is needed ; and in summer as we 
are informed by the inhabitants, who are now coming 
in with their arms it is so hot that they boil eggs in 
the sand, and sometimes can even roast meat in it. No 
mountains are to be seen, much less a plain nothing, 
in fact, but dense woods. The trees yield turpentine 
and pitch. We are now eating early vegetables, such 

Letter from Savannah. 237 

as beans, peas, lettuce, and white and yellow turnips. 
Wild ducks, geese, turkeys, pheasants, parrots, large 
and small game, as well as domestic fowls, are plentiful. 
Bears, wolves, tigers,* and similar wild beasts are also 
met with. Buffaloes, likewise are to be found in the for 
ests further inland. Rattle-snakes and even more dead 
ly animals abound, and are, as you may well imagine, 
most disagreeable. I will at some future time tell 
you all about them when we are together face to face. 
The variable cold, and then suddenly the excessive hot 
weather, together with the numerous morasses and 
stagnant water, are the cause of many diseases, espe 
cially fevers. Three and four years in succession, and 
in fact one may say every year up to the fortieth, the 
inhabitants (they seldom live longer) have fevers. 
Many Germans hereabout attain, however, a great age. 
I have indeed met with several who are 74 and 80 years 
old. This, you see, still gives one some consolation. 
The English General Prevostf is daily expected 
with his garrison from St. Augustine. They are the 
i62d and 6oth Regiments of Royal Americans, con 
sisting of four battalions. Herr von Porbeck and 
many Germans are with them, and among others an 
old university friend of mine, the son of the G. R. H., 

* " Tiger " is the word in the original. The writer, how 
ever, probably had in his mind panthers or cougars. 

f It may give one some idea of the way in which old 
times are linked with the present, to state that a nephew of 
this same general is still (1891) living, a clerk in the N. Y. 

238 Letter from Savannah. 

from Jena, as a lieutenant. He is married, and his 
wife arrived here yesterday. She is also from Jena, 
and in my time was still a young woman. The 
English regiments are stationed at Ebenezer, 25 miles 
from this city. The Salzburgers are also stationed at 
this place. We are in sight of Charlestown, though 
it is fully 1 20 miles distant from us here, and 190 
miles from St. Augustine. It is thought that we 
will not reach the former city, although it was so 
given out on our departure from New York. May 
Heaven grant it ! much as I desire to see new 
places. The above-mentioned Madame H- - gives 
no good account of it ; still, it is healthier than here, 
as it is more hilly, and situated nearer the sea. 

N. S. General Prevost has this moment arrived 
with 250 horsemen. They were farmers, who had 
banded together in this province and that of Carolina, 
having taken sides with the king, and for this reason 
had been pursued by the rebels and driven into the 
wildernesses. Finally, they retreated into a swamp 
(or, rather, an island surrounded by marshes), where 
the rebels were unable to reach them. Here they 
lived for six days on roots and herbs, until they were 
rescued by General Prevost. They all wore red bands 
upon their hats, which denote that they are friends of the 
king. They looked ragged, and wore shoes of untanned 
skins. Every one carried a musket before him upon his 
horse. They are fast being drilled into regular soldiers, 
and have received green riding-waistcoats with black 
collars and trimmings. S. D. H u, Auditeur. 



July 4, 1779. 

This, my friend, is the fifth letter I have sent you 
from this part of the world. As I have as yet re 
ceived no answer to any of them, I am apprehensive 
that my letters have failed to reach you. Two ships 
on which I forwarded letters to Europe I see have been 
seized by the English ; and in regard to the fate of 
two other vessels, in which I sent letters to you and 
to another friend, I am uncertain. Your silence, my 
dearest friend, makes me feel that these have also been 
lost. As I arn sending this present letter through the 
French Minister Plenipotentiary, M. Gerard, I am 
hoping in fact, flattering myself that it will come 

r This letter purports to be given in the appendix to, 
Kapp s " Life of Steuben ;" but not only is it not rendered in 
full, but many delicate touches, revealing the personal traits 
and affectionate and kind-hearted disposition of the man, 
are entirely omitted. Besides, considerable of the letter 
which is given is a paraphrase, and not a translation. 


240 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

to hand. I will again repeat as far as possible what 
I have already substantially stated in a former letter. 

My first letter to you, my dearest friend, was written 
from Boston about five weeks after my arrival in this 
part of the world. You will find a better description 
of a storm in " Robinson Crusoe" or other tales of 
strange adventure than I am able to give you. I 
will only say this much that I have gone through 
two storms, each of which were of the very roughest 
description. The first storm we met with was in the 
Mediterranean Sea, near the coast of Africa ; and the 
other one was near the coast of New Scotland [Nova 
Scotia]. Each lasted three days, and in both of them, 
but especially the first one, my frigate was damaged to 
such an extent that even our sea-officers gave up all 
hope. If you will add to these small inconveniences, 
the fact that the forepart of the ship took fire three 
times, and that we had 1 700 cwt. of powder on board ; 
and, furthermore, that a mutiny among the sailors 
placed us in the dilemma of having to enter into an en 
gagement with 14 men against 84 in order to overpower 
the ringleaders ; and that it took us sixty days to make 
the voyage, in the most dangerous time of the year 
you will then see that this passage was one of the most 
dangerous and dreadful that could be imagined ! 

But disagreeable as my voyage had been, so was 
my landing in America most flattering. We anchored 
off Portsmouth, the chief town and capital of New 
Hampshire, on the ist December, 1777. Before en 
tering the harbor I sent my secretary in a sloop to the 

Letter from Baron Steuben. 241 

commandant to announce my arrival. General La- 
dom* himself, who was in command, came on board 
the ship, and took my officers and myself away in his 
barge. Upon my arrival in the harbor the guns of 
the fort and all of the ships lying at anchor were dis 
charged in my honor ; and some thousand of the in 
habitants upon my landing welcomed me in the most 
friendly manner. M. Ladom conducted me to his 
house, where we dined ; and meantime all the people 
came running up to gaze on me, as if I were a rhinoc 
eros ! f 

Greatly as I had been weakened by my painful 
voyage, I yet devoted the next day to an inspection 
of the fortifications. The third day I reviewed the 
troops of the garrison, and on the 4th of December I 
continued my journey to Boston by land. J 

* John Langdon, a true patriot and soldier, who was at 
Bennington, Saratoga, and Rhode Island. He was a delegate 
to Congress, and also to the convention that formed the 
Federal Constitution. In 1788 he was chosen governor of 
New Hampshire; and from 1789 to 1791 served as U. S. 
Senator. In 1812 a majority in Congress selected him for 
Vice-President of the United States, an honor which he 
declined. He was born at Portsmouth, N. H., 1739, and 
died Sept. 18, 1819. 

f An American of the present day would have written, 
" all the people came running up to see the elephant. 

\ An amusing anecdote of General Steuben is minutely re 
lated in Kapp s " Life of Steuben," which occurred on this 
journey to Boston. A Tory landlord of a tavern in Worces 
ter County, Mass., having declared that he had neither beds 

242 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

My reception in Boston was as flattering as that in 
Portsmouth. Here I met the celebrated Mr. Han 
cock, the former President of Congress. He showed 
me an order, just received from Congress, to the effect 
that all the requisite conveniences for the journey of 
myself and suite to Yorktown where Congress at 
that time was assembled should be arranged to my 
satisfaction. Mr. Hancock himself undertook the 
management ; and, as a consequence, wagons, sleighs, 
and led and off horses were furnished me. Five 
Moors [negroes] were given me as grooms and 
wagon-servants, and also a commissary to look after 
quarters and forage while upon the journey. More 
over, as I had brought along only one valet dechambre 
and one cook from Paris, I engaged two Englishmen 
in Boston as servants, and likewise formed a field 
equipage for myself and officers. From here (Boston) 
I wrote my first letter to you, in which I enclosed one 
for his Highness the Prince,* and a packet to Captain 
von H -; and as far as I can now remember, there 
was also a letter to Fr . 

The preparation of my equipage [outfit] detained 
me over five weeks in Boston ; but finally, on the loth 
January, 1778, I continued my journey to Yorktown. 
At this place Congress received me with every imag- 

nor provisions for the party, Steuben levelled his pistol at 
the man s, head, and demanded both. They were quickly 
furnished, and in the morning the Baron liberally rewarded 
his host in Continental money. 

* The Prince of Hohenzollern-Hechingen. 

Letter from Baron Steuben. 243 

inable distinction. A house had already been pre 
pared for me, and two sentries were placed before the 
door of my dwelling. The day after my arrival Con 
gress sent a committee of three of its members to 
wait on me, to learn under what conditions I would 
enter the service of this country. My answer was, 
that I was unwilling at present to make any terms 
with Congress ; that I desired first to go through the 
approaching campaign as a volunteer ; that I only 
asked for commissions for those officers who composed 
my suite ; and that I did not wish to take either rank 
or pay. This was acceded to by Congress, as I had an 
ticipated would be the case. I received also a letter of 
acknowledgment couched in the most complimentary 
terms, and stating among other things that I should 
be deferred to in every particular.* My officers re 
ceived their brevets, and even my secretary was given 
the rank and pay of a captain. 

At this stage I must mention that no higher rank 
than that of a major-general is designated in our mili 
tary rank here. General Washington is the oldest 

* In Kapp s translation this sentence is not only para 
phrased but incorrectly rendered. Kapp makes Steuben say 
that Congress sent him a " Resolution of Thanks," whereas 
the Baron says they sent him a " letter of acknowledgment" 
a very different idea. Perhaps this is not of much conse 
quence ; only, if the letter is worth giving at all, it should 
be translated accurately. As a matter of fact, Congress did 
pass a resolution of thanks ; only Steuben does not here 
say so. 

244 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

major-general, and as general-in-chief all the preroga 
tives of a general field-marshal in other armies are 
accorded him. His authority is as undisputed as that 
of the Stadtholder of Holland was in the zenith of 
his power. The other major-generals, whose numbers 
at the present time do not exceed nine, command 
corps, armies, wings and divisions. Major-General 
Gates commands the Army of the North, General 
Lincoln that of the South, and General Sullivan the 
forces against the Indians. All are subject to the or 
ders of the general-in-chief. The second rank is that 
of brigadier-general. These command brigades, the 
same as major-generals in European armies. 

Upon my arrival at the army I was again received 
with more marks of distinction than I had expected. 
General Washington came some miles to meet me 
and accompanied me to my quarters, where I found 
an officer and 25 men on guard. On my remonstrat 
ing against this on the ground that I was simply to 
be regarded as a volunteer, he replied in the most 
courteous manner that the entire army took pleasure 
in protecting such volunteers. He presented Major- 
General Lord Stirling and several other generals to 
me, and also Lieutenant-Colonel remans* and Major 
Walker,f whom Congress had designated as my ad- 

* Ferrand, Marie Louis, Baron and Count de, Governor of 
Santo Domingo, born in Besai^on, France, I2th October, 
1753; died in Palo Hincado, Santo Domingo, November 7, 

f Walker, Benjamin, a favorite aide of Baron Steuben, born 

Letter from Baron Steuben. 245 

jutant-generals. On the same day my name was 
given to the army as the password, and on the follow 
ing day the army turned out, General Washington 
accompanying me to review it. In a word, if Prince 
Ferdinand of Brunswick or the first field-marshal of 
Europe had arrived in my place he could not have been 
received with more marks of distinction than I was. 

My services as a volunteer lasted no longer than 
five weeks, during which I drilled the army and made 
various dispositions in it which met with such appro 
bation that I received my commission as a major- 
general on the 26th of April. This was also accom 
panied at the same time with another commission 
of inspector-general of all the armies of the United 
States. My salary was now fixed at 16,400 French 

in England in 1753; died in Utica, N. Y., I3th January, 
1818. As stated in the text, he was at this time aide-de 
camp to Baron Steuben, and in 1781-2 to General Wash 
ington. He was Naval Officer of New York under Wash 
ington s Administration, and Representative in Congress 
from New York in 1801-3. In 1797 he was agent of the 
vast estates of the Earl of Bute in Central New York, and 
was identified with the progress and growth of Utica. 

The late Mrs. Almy W. Rogers, the mother-in-law of 
Mr. Win. S. Mersereau and of Mr. Charles W. Miller of 
New York City, was a ward of Col. Benjamin Walker. The 
tea-cup used by that General as part of his breakfast equi 
page is now in the possession of her daughter, Mrs. Miller, 
by whom it is cherished as a most precious relic. In these 
iconoclastic days it is pleasant to put on record a fact of this 

246 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

livres;* while, in addition, my table and all of my 
official staff f were maintained free of cost by a commis 
sary of our own, and furnished with everything needful. 
Moreover, 22 horses for myself and equipage, i cap 
tain of horse, 2 lieutenants, and 40 dragoons to act as 
a body-guard were assigned to me by Congress. Fur 
thermore, my adjutants and officers received tfce 
requisite number of horses and servants commensu 
rate with their rank. I have 2 adjutant-generals, 2 in 
spection-adjutants, and 2 secretaries whose salaries are 
paid by Congress. Moreover, I have as adjutants 
Major des Epiniers, a nephew of the celebrated Beau- 
marchais, and the Marquis de Brittine, a major in the 

Flattering as these decided marks of distinction have 
been, it only, my friend, makes me the more desirous 
to merit them. As far as my mental faculties and 
bodily vigor will allow, I shall unremittingly devote 
them to fulfilling the demands of a nation which has 
honored me with such great confidence. No diffi 
culties, no troubles, no danger, shall, nor can they, 

* About $3300. 

f Steuben in one of his letters gives the number of his 
staff as twenty-one. They were Majors De Romanai, De 
L Enfant, and Des Epiniers ; Captains Duponceau (who was 
also his first secretary) and De Pontiere ; Colonels Walker 
and Fleury ; Lieutenant-Colonel Ternant ; Captains Duval 
and Fairlie ; Major North ; Colonel Wm. S. Smith ; Lieu 
tenant-Colonel N. Fish ; Colonel Meade ; Messrs. Peyton, 
Randolph, and Moore ; Majors Galvan, Villefranche, Barber, 
and Popham ; and lastly, Lieutenant-Colonel de la Lanyante. 

Better from Baron Steuben. 247 

prevent my success. My department is extensive, 
and one eighth of the world seem to think that my 
talents may be of service to them. Thank God that 
up to the present they have been; and cheerfully will 
I die for a nation that has so highly honored me with 
its confidence. Up to the present time all of my un 
dertakings have progressed successfully, and I can say 
that the trust reposed in me by the army increases 
daily. I commanded the left wing in the first en 
gagement of the battle of Monmouth last year, and 
was so fortunate as to turn the day in our favor ; and 
in all the smaller engagements, both of the last and 
present campaigns, I have been lucky enough to have 
all the soldiers anxious to be under my command.* 

* At the battle of Monmouth Steuben rallied the retreat 
ing and demoralized troops of General Lee. He com 
manded in this battle, as he says, the left wing ; and Alexander 
Hamilton, who witnessed the veteran-like action of the troops 
under Steuben, said he " had never known till that day the 
value of discipline." " Baron Steuben," also writes General 
Scammell, in a letter dated at Valley Forge, April 8, 1778, 
to General Sullivan, " sets us a truly noble example. He 
has undertaken the discipline of the army, and shows himself 
to be a perfect master of it, not only in the grand manoeuvres 
but in the most minute details. To see a gentleman digni 
fied with a lieutenant-general s commission from the great 
Prussian monarch condescended [sic] with a grace peculiar 
to himself, to take under his direction a squad of ten or 
twelve men in the capacity of drill-sergeant, commands the 
admiration of both officers and men, and causes them to im 
prove exceedingly fast under his instructions." 

248 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

Last winter I completed the " Infantry and Cavalry 
Tactics," which were at once printed and promulgated. 

Congress testified its thanks to me, both by a letter 
of acknowledgment, which was published in all the 
newspapers, and by a present of two saddle-horses and 
4000 thalers (a thaler is 5 livre and 10 sous) ; and not 
only my adjutants, but even my secretaries, received 

The winter I passed in Philadelphia. On the 4th of 
January, I was appointed a member of the Directory 
of War [War Department] ; and on the 26th of March 
I set out to join the army. During my stay in Phila 
delphia I formed an intimate acquaintance with the 
French Minister, M. Gerard, whose departure I deeply 
regret. He honored me by coming in person to the 
camp to visit me ; and I need not say that he was re 
ceived by the army with all the honors due an am 
bassador. The day following his arrival I ordered a 
manoeuvre to be executed by eight regiments of in 
fantry and 1 6 cannon ; and at the close M. Gerard, 
the general-in-chief, and all the generals and colonels 
of the army dined with me at a table consisting of 
sixty covers. 

I am at present on a tour of inspection for the pur 
pose not only of reviewing all the regiments, but of 
introducing the system laid down in my tactics. In 
deed, my friend, I have been fortunate in everything 
I have here undertaken. I am now fifth in rank as 
general ; and if my career be not ended by a fever or 
by half an ounce of lead, the possibilities are vast 

Letter from Baron Steuben* 249 

enough to satisfy the most ambitious. Two or three 
years of toil, and then, my friend, you must promise 
to visit me in Paris ; and there we will discuss the 
question whether we are to dine together * in Europe 
or in America. Oh ! my dearest F , why have I 
wasted my years in such a manner ! Two years of 
work if one is not afraid of toil and danger can 
make a man successful. Experience has convinced 
me of this ; nor can I forgive myself for my past 

What a beautiful, what a happy country this is ! 
Without kings, without prelates, without blood-suck 
ing farmer-generals,f and without idle barons ! Here 
everybody is prosperous. Poverty is an unknown 
evil. Indeed, I should become too prolix were I to 
give you an account of the prosperity and happiness 
of these people. J The account of them by Abbe" 

* i.e., be associated together. 

f In verbis simus faciles, etc. When Brutus freed Rome 
from kingly rule the Patricians spoke much of freedom, and 
meanwhile rode almost rough-shod over the Plebeians who. 
had been released from the yoke. Again, under the Pro 
tector Cromwell many especially gentlemen of the army 
sang songs of praise that the king was no more. It is true 
that the word " farmer-general " has always been unknown 
in North America ; but by what name shall we call those 
gentlemen who, since the year 17/4, yearly take large sums, 
(under threat of punishment by fire and sword) from the in 
habitants for the purpose of continuing the war ? Note by> 

\ All Europeans who have visited America during the 

250 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

Reynal is not entirely accurate, but it is the best. 
Read it and judge for yourself. 

But enough of myself and my new Fatherland. 
How are you, my friend, and how is our most serene 
sovereign ? Please hand the enclosed to the best of 
princes, with the assurances of my most submissive 
respect. My happiness will only be complete when 
I hear that he has received convincing proofs of the 
intensity of my gratitude. My many duties and the 
uncertainty of the ocean have hitherto prevented my 
doing so. Before leaving Philadelphia, however, I 
requested a certain Mr. Robert Morris to procure a 
complete collection of North American trees (of 
which there are some 320 different varieties), and to 
send three or four specimens of each kind to the care 
of M. Gerard in Paris next fall. M. Gerard has 
promised to send the trees at my cost to Strasburg, 
at the same time notifying his serene highness the 
prince. Mr. Morris procured a similar collection this 
spring for the King of France. The Garden of Pheas- 

present war unite in speaking of the wonderful prosperity 
of that country, which seems to strike the eye at a glance. 
This prosperity, admitted by both sides, has either begun 
since the rebellion of 1774, a proposition which no one, in 
the very nature of things, can maintain, since a poverty, 
stricken people require a generation under the wisest of 
.governments to become prosperous, or the accounts must 
have been written at a previous period when North Amer 
ica was under British rule. That rule, therefore, could not 
have been either oppressive or tyrannical. Note by Schlozer. 

Letter from Baron Steuben. 251 

ants is the best place for this collection. Nothing- 
excepting the uncertainties of navigation will prevent 
me at this or some future time from tendering my 
respectful acknowledgments to the Princess and the 
Princess von F in the way of West Indian goods. 

And then, my friend, what shall I give you? and 
what for H -? and also for - -? In truth, I 
still have some acknowledgments to make before 

closing my letter. How is Fr ? Is he married ? 

Is he happy ? If not, let him come here, for I can 
novy reward his services. In case he should conclude 
to do so, send me word speedily, and I will forward 
his travelling expenses to Strasburg. 

I wrote you that I would give Schleitheim employ 
ment here, although it is difficult to get along in 
the service without a knowledge of English. I have 
now thoroughly mastered that language, so that I 
can write and speak of anything I wish ; and I have 
even written my " Tactics" in English.* Inasmuch as 

*"In the autumn of 1780," says " Appleton s American 
Biographical Cyclopaedia," " Steuben published a Manual for 
the army, furnished with diagrams to explain his rules. It 
was entitled Regulations for the Order and Discipline of 
the Troops of the United States/ Each chapter was written 
first in poor German, then translated into poor French, 
then put into good French, and lastly into good English, in 
which last condition it was entirely unintelligible to Steu 
ben. It nevertheless served its purpose, became the law and 
guide of the army, and even after the war was adopted by 
several of the States." 

The above quotation, it will be seen from Steuben s letter, 

252 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

Schleitheim did not arrive here, and as I have received 
no word from you since I wrote you about him, I 
infer that you have either failed to receive my letter, 
or that he has been provided for in another way. 
Moreover, I must candidly admit to you that six 
foreign officers cause more trouble to me here than 
two hundred American ones ; and indeed most of the 
foreigners have so utterly lost their credit, that it is 
daily becoming more difficult to employ foreign 
officers. A large number of German barons and 
French marquises have already sailed away ;* and I am 

contains two grave errors: 1st. The Manual was published 
in 1779; and, 2d, so far from its being unintelligible to 
Steuben in English, he expressly says he had written it him 
self in that language. The quotation also, it seems to me, 
contains a slur upon Steuben, by intimating that it was first 
written in " poor German " Steuben s own mother-tongue. 
This is tantamount to saying that Steuben was illiterate, 
which certainly was not the case : on the contrary, it was far 
otherwise. It is surprising, also, that Kapp (a conscientious 
and able historian) in his " Life of Baron Steuben" falls into 
one. of these errors. Speaking of the Manual, he says : " It 
was afterward written in good English by Captain Walker; 
and when it was completed Steuben did not understand a 
word of it himself, from his ignorance of the English lan 
guage" ! I say " surprising ;" because Kapp, whom per 
sonally I knew well, was one of the most kind-hearted and 
genial of men, and would not willingly have done injustice 
to a human being, no matter how lowly his station. 

* The reader will recall the letter from Boston, in which 
the writer says that " thirty-one French officers are to sail 
shortly back to France." 

Letter from Baron Steuben. 253 

always nervous and apprehensive when a baron or a 
marquis announces himself. While here we are in a 
republic ; and Mr. Baron does not count a farthing 
more than Mister Jacob or Mister Peter. Indeed, 
German and French noses can hardly accustom 
themselves to such a state of things ! Our general of 
artillery, for instance, was a bookbinder in Boston.* 
He is a worthy man, thoroughly understands his trade, 
and fills his present position with much credit. 

Baron von Kalbe and myself are now the only for 
eign generals in the United States service ; and Kalbe, 
who has an income of over 30,000 livres in France, 
will resign at the end of this campaign. f 

Finally, my friend, I will only state to you my pros 
pects and then close my letter. I will finish the war 
here, or it will finish me. Without doubt England, at 
the utmost, can continue the game but two years 
longer. It will then be my care to put the army and 
the militia in the thirteen provinces on a uniform and 
solid footing; and this having been accomplished, I 
shall render an account to Congress as to what we 
owe each other. My ability to keep up my appoint 
ments on 16,400 livres is assured to me for life. Con 
gress has promised me, not gifts, but a landed estate 
either in New Jersey or Pennsylvania, two of the best 

* General Knox. 

f Kalbe was recently (i6th Aug. 1780) killed in the engage 
ment at Camden. He was wounded, captured, and died. 
Note by Schlozer. 

254 Letter from Baron Steuben. 

provinces.* A considerable pension from France, after 
the (successful) termination of the war, was pledged 
to me by the French Court before my departure for 
America ; besides which, I can depend upon receiving 
a substantial gratuity especially from the thirteen prov 
inces. To acquire all this requires on my part only 
three years, at the farthest, of life, health, steadfast 
ness of purpose and courage. The first two conditions 
do not depend upon me : the last two are within my 
power and control. And then, my friend, when these 
have been fulfilled ! Then shall I see you in Europe ; 
and then we can talk the matter over, and decide 
whether you shall in future dine with me in Paris or 
Philadelphia ! 

Believe me, my friend, this globe of ours is not so 
large as we imagine it ! An ant does not deserve its 
food if it is too lazy to seek it at the other side of its 
hill ; and I have already wasted fourteen years of my 
life. Now, is Canada my hunting-lodge ; Georgia my 

* "After the war Congress, with its usual vacillating course, 
refused to fulfil its contract with Steuben to pay him for his 
services, but he was given grants of land in Virginia, Penn 
sylvania, and New Jersey. The latter he declined to accept 
when he found it consisted of the confiscated estates of an 
old Tory who would be left destitute, and, in the kindness 
of his heart, he interceded for him. He was also given a 
whole township near Utica, N. Y., and after seven years 
delay Congress at length allowed him a pension of $2400." 
He retired to this land, and, clearing off 60 acres, built a 
log-house in which he lived until his death, which occurred 
on the 22d Nov. 1795. 

Letter front Baron Steuben. 255 

country-seat ; and this strip of land the eighth of the 
world. At each of these extreme ends an order signed 
by me will be executed. This is somewhat flattering 
to an ambitious man ; and you can, therefore, recog 
nize your friend ! 

When you write to me, my best of friends, address 
your letters to the care of M. Gerard at Versailles, 
through whose agency I shall more securely receive 
them. This is his address : " M. Gerard, Conseiller 
des Affaires Etrangers & Versailles." And here is 
mine : 

" To His Excellence, the honorable Baron of Steu- 
ben, Inspector-General and Major-General of the 
Armies of the United States in North America." 

Have the kindness, my friend, to send the worthy 

General R d an abstract of my letter. My many 

engagements prevent me from writing to all the peo 
ple whom I esteem and honor. Sp - is to be classed 
with those people. Let him know of my present cir 
cumstances; for I am certain they will interest him. 

Should General R , or any other of my friends, 

know of any officers or other persons who would like 
to try their luck in this part of the world, a line writ 
ten by them to me will be sufficient by them to secure 
my very best endeavors to promote their welfare. 

Farewell ; and long and happily may you live, my 
dearest friend ! Let me soon hear from you ; and I 
remain, with the sincerest friendship, 

Yours, most truly, 



The following sketch of the Recollets and their convent 
is condensed from an address on the English cathedral of 
Quebec, recently delivered before the "Historical Society" 
of that city by its accomplished librarian, Mr. F. C. Wiirtele : 

The mendicant order of friars called Franciscans was 
founded in Spain, in the year 1208, by St. Francis d Assisi, 
and subsequently were introduced into JFrance by St. Louis 
of Gonzaga. They were also called " Recollets," from the 
Latin word Recollectus, signifying " meditation " and also 
"gathering." Their chief works were teaching, nursing the 
sick, and ministering to the poor, whose wants they supplied 
out of the donations and alms which they received. In 
fact, their livelihood was obtained entirely by begging, per 
formed by the " Freres Mineurs ;" and so highly were they 
esteemed and beloved in old Canada, that the habitant 
would always transport free of charge the results of their 
begging expeditions from village to village, and finally to 
the convent in Quebec. The boatmen, also, invariably 
were pleased to ferry them free across the St. Lawrence. In 
1614, four Recollets were chosen as missionaries to Canada, 
namely : Fathers Denis Jamay, the superior ; Jean D Ol- 
beau, Joseph LeCaron, and Brother Pacifique Duplessis. 
They assembled at Rouen in March, 1615, and sailed from 


Appendix. 257 

Honfleur on the 24th April, arriving at Tadousac on the 
25th May, and proceeding thence to Quebec. A temporary 
chapel and house were erected near the " Abitation," now 
the site of the Church of Notre-Dame des Victoires. 

This was the first church erected in the French posses 
sions in North America. The convent was first completed, 
but the church was not ready for consecration until 25th 
May, 1621, and was named Notre-Dame des Anges. Pere 
LeClerq narrates that they still retained the house and 
chapel erected in 1615, in the lower town of Quebec, and 
used them as Hospice and " Chapelle succursale." The 
establishment on the St. Charles was strongly built and of 
a semi-military character, fitted with bastions and surrounded 
with palisades, in order to guard against the raids of the 
Indians. In fact the building was hardly completed when 
the friars repulsed a serious attack of the Iroquois. 

In 1677, Governor Frontenac built for them, at his own 
expense, a large convent, to which, in 1678, a chapel and 
sacristy were added. The Recollets, however, had not been 
ten years in possession of their convent when they wished 
to establish themselves in the Upper Town of Quebec, and 
on the 8th May, 1681, they obtained from the king an 
emplacement called the " Senechaussee " or " Seneschal s 
Jurisdiction," between Garden, St. Anne, and St. Louis 
streets, on which they built by degrees a convent and 

At the siege of Quebec, in 1759, the Recollet buildings 
were considerably damaged by the fire of the British ; and 
this calamity, together with the fall of Quebec, having ren 
dered homeless the few friars that remained, they dispersed. 
From this time the number of Recollets diminished year by 
year, so that their convent was too large for them, but in 
1776 the unoccupied portion was used as a jail for political 
offenders, and the American prisoners taken in Mont- 

258 Appendix. 

gomery s fatal attack on Quebec, 3ist December of that 
year, were there locked up. 

The Recollects were most liberal towards other religious 
denominations, for it is recorded in the Quebec Gazette of 
Thursday, 2ist May, 1767, that : "On Sunday next, divine 
service, according to the use of the Church of England, will 
be at the Recollets church and continue for the summer 
season, beginning soon after eleven. The drum will beat 
each Sunday soon after half an hour past ten, and the 
Recollets bell will ring, to give notice of the English ser 
vice, the instant their own is ended." 

The Re"collet convent and church were again burned on 
the 6th of September, 1796; and after the fire the Govern 
ment took possession of the property and razed the ruins. 
Part of the foundation wall could till lately be seen in the 
roadway between the Cathedral and Place d Armes near the 
crossing. That portion of it now surrounded by a stone 
wall forms the English Cathedral " Close" 


ABBOTT, Dr. Chas. O., 

quoted, 218. 
Acland, Major, 124; Lady, 


Adams, John, 204. 
Albany, 56, 100, 118, 125, 


Albanians, 104. 

Albemarle, Va., 177. 

American women, descrip 
tion of, 138. 

Anbury, Lieut, 176. 

Andra, Captain, 109. 

Andre, Major, 201. 

Angelica, N. Y., named 
after Gen. Schuyler s 
daughter, 157. 

Arnold, General, German 
opinion of, 53; names 
of vessels in his fleet, 53, 
98, ii i, 126. 

Athanas, an Indian Prince, 

Auchmuty, Rev. Sam. ,201. 

Ayers, Robert, messenger 
to Jane McCrea, 95. 

BACH, Lieut, 97. 
Balcarras, Lord, 125. 
Barmer, Major, von, 109 ; 

battalion of, 39, 51, 149. 
Barnaby, Captain, sketch 

of, 220. 

Bartling, Captain, 109. 
Baste, river, 47. 
Batiscan, river, 44. 
Baum, Colonel, 97, 100, 

109, 1 60. 
Bauman, Sebastian, sketch 

of, 133-. 

Becker, Lieut, 91. 
Belden, Bauman L., 134. 
Belle-Island (Randall s), 

Bennington, battle of, 100, 

no, 1 1 8. 
Bic, Isle of, 13, 41. 



Billop, Colonel, 204. 

Blackwell s Island, 199. 

Blanc, Captain, 44. 

Blandford, 145. 

Bloomfield, Major, 124. 

Bode, Lieut, 123. 

Booth Bros., 125, 126. 

Boston, 128, 135, 138, 154, 
173; frigate, 172. 

Bothman, Lieut, 109. 

Brandy wine, creek, 216. 

Brant, Joseph, 79. 

Breva, Lieut, 109. 

Breymann, Gen., 97, 99, 
100, 103, 109, 114, 123. 

Bride, Eng. frigate, 44. 

Brookfield, 149. 

Brown, Captain, 166. 

Brunswick, city of, 40, 1 79 ; 
duchy of, 154. 

Bunker s Hill, 154. 

Burgoyne, Gen., 56, 87, 
in, 114, 115, 119, 120, 
122, 154; gives a ball, 
156; acts as counsel at 
Henley s trial, 161, 162; 
embarks for England, 
169, 170. 

Bushwick, L. I., 197. 

Bute, Lord, 245. 

CAMPBELL, Lieut-Col., 230; 
names of his ships, 230. 

Cambridge, Mass., 116, 

i53> i54~5> 107. 

Campagne, General, 117. 

Canadian winter, 60, 72 ; 
products, 14; volunteers, 
79; houses, 15; political 
economy, 20; domestic 
economy, 62 ; hunting, 
62; character, 28 ; habit- 

^ ants, 43. 

Captains de Melice (Mili 
tia), 22. 

Carleton, Gen., 20, 21, 26, 

^ 37> 60, 75, 77, 80. 

Carleton, Capt, 55, 64, 65. 
-, Lady, 68. * 
, Lady Anne, 65. 

j *-/ 

, Major Thomas, 65. 
Carlisle, Lord, 232. 
Carter, Angelica, dau. of 

Gen. Schuyler, 156. 
Cartier, Jaques, river, 42. 
Castleton, Vt, 84. 
Cavendish, Lord, 55. 
Champlain, lake, 38, 48, 51, 

Charleston, 236. 
Charlottesville, Va., 178, 

Cherry-Valley massacre, 

, 79- 
Chester, Pa., 222. 

Chicot, river, 47. 
Church, Jno. Carter, Schuy- 
ler s son-in-law, 157. 



Church, Phillip, 157." 

Cilley, Colonel, 121. 

Cincinnati, Society of, 132. 

Clark (Clerke), Sir Fran 
cis, 127. 

Clarendon, Vt, 85, 88. 

Claverack, 143. 

Clinton, Gen. Geo., 83, 88. 
, Sir Henry, 119, 174. 

Colbert, Seigneur, 47. 

Condon, Michael, finds 

fold on Saratoga battle- 
eld, 1 15. 
Congressional Committee, 

despotism of, 150. 
Connecticut river, 146 ; 

oxen of, 146. 
Continentals, description 

of, 128. 
Convention troops start 

for Boston, 135. 
Cook, Ransom, and wife, 

-, 95 

Cornwallis, Lord, 213. 

Cox, Hon. Samuel S., 127. 
Cramahe, Lieut.-Gov., 66. 
Crown-Point, 54. 
Cruse, Lieut, 123. 
Cunningham, of sugar- 
house memory, 166. 
Custer, Gen. Geo. A., 141. 

DAHLSJEINE, Captain, 123, 
1 60. 

Dalgleish, J. J., quoted, 

117, 1 68. 

D Annieres, Lieut, Jr., 109. 
Danville s map of North 

America, 192. 
Deerfield, 135. 
Delavall, Thomas, 201. 
Denecke, Ensign, 123. 
De Peyster, Gen. J. Watts, 

quoted, 128, 148. 
Diamond Island, in, 119. 
Dommers, Captain, 109. 
Donop, Colonel, 195. 
Dovogat-House, 112. 
Duer, Judge Win., sketch 

of, 96. 
Duponceau, aide to Steu- 

ben, 1 86. 

Dutch settlers at Kinder- 
hook, N. Y., 137. 
Dutch Reformed Church, 

Jersey City, N. J., 144. 

EDEN, Commissioner 

Wm., 232. 

Edmonston, Captain, 178. 
Ehrenkrook, Lieut-Col., 

66, 71. 
Elk-River, Pa., 216 ; ferry 

at, 219. 

FERDINAND, Prince, 245. 
Fernans, Colonel, 244. 
Fevre, a cur&, 66. 



Fiske, Prof. Jno., quoted, 

89, in. 
Fishkill, 1 20. 
Flatbush, 195. 
Fletcher, Prof. James, 

quoted, 43. 
Fort, Anne, 95, 99. 

, Chambly, 50. 

, Edward, 88, 99, 156. 

, Ticonderoga (Caril 
lon), 54, 56, 76, 83, 112, 

118, 125. 
Fort, George, 88, 94, 104, 

108, no, 156. 
Fort, Stanwix, 1 1 1. 

, Hardy, 127. 

, Ingoldsby, 134. 

, Massachusetts, 134. 

, Miller, 97, 99. 

, Winslow, 134. 
Foy, Captain Ed., sketch 
^ of, 74. 

Franciscan Friars, 257. 
Franklin, Benjamin, 77, 

146, 204. 
Fraser, Gen. Simon, 54, 

87, 96, 98, 117, 120, 123, 

126, 128. 
Fraser, Capt, 114; corps 

of, 172. 

Fredersdorf, Captain, 115, 
^ 123. 
Freeman s Farm, battle of, 

Freeman s House, 123. 

Free-mason, burial of a, 38. 
Frontenac, Governor, 258. 

GALL, General, 54. 
Gates, Gen., 124, 126, 129, 

131, 134, 149, 244; army 

of, 1 10, 1 20. 
Gebhard, Lieut, 109. 
Gensau, Captain, 109. 
George, Lake, 112, 128. 
Gerard, minister, 239, 248. 
Germaine, Lord George, 

^8 ? . 

Gleissenberg, Capt., 109, 

Glover, Gen. Jno., 161. 
Gordon, General, 30. 
Graff, Count, 109. 
Great Harrington, 144. 
Greenbush, 137. 
Greenfield, Mass., 144. 
Green, Captain, 124. 
Grobschmidt (Goldsmith), 

Captain, 91. 
Grootland (Rutland), 85. 

HABERLIN, engineer, 123. 
Hagermann, color-bearer, 


Haldimand, Gen., 65. 
Hamilton, Alexander, 1 14, 

216, 247. 
Hampton, Va., 180. 


Hancock, John, 77, 157, 
242 ; daughter of, 141. 

Hannemann, color-bearer 

Hardy, Governor, 127. 

Harlem river, 188. 

Harris-Hook (gist St., N. 
Y.), 1 88. 

Harvard College, 155. 

Hartz Mountains, 40. 

Heath, Gen., 155, 166, 

i 7 6. 

Heister, Gen., 206. 

Hell-Gate, 188. 

Henley, Col. David, 161, 


Henley, Major Thos., 164. 
Hemstead Plains, 196. 
Hendrick s Point, 193. 
Hesse-Hanau Regiment, 

49, 104. 
Hesse-Hanan Artillery, 

115, 121. 

Hill, Colonel, 167. 
Hinrich, Lieutenant, 188. 
Hintersass, Johann (John 

Henderson), a deserter, 

Hollander s Crick 

(Creek), 218. 
Howe, Gen., 56, 77, 119, 

204, 235; army of, 149. 
Howe, Lord, 205. 
Hubert-town (H u b b a r - 

ton), battle of, 90. 

Hudson river, 100. 
Huron nation, 79. 

INGOLDSBY, Lt.-Gov., 134. 
Isle au Castor, 48. 
Cerf, 50. 
Deux Tetes,52. 

- Grande, 52. 

- Motte, 52. 
Noix, 51. 

* * *^r ****> 

du Pas, 48. 

- uu i db, 40. 

- St. Pierre, 192. 

JAMAY, Father Jenis, 257. 
Johnson, Sir John, 70. 

, Capt, 1 1 6. 
Jones, David, 95. 

- House, 99. 

KAPP, Frederick, 239, 241, 


Katte, Lieut, 57. 
Kinderhook, 129, 137, 138. 
Kings-Bridge, 189. 
Kingsford, Dr. William, 

quoted, 71. 
Kipp s Bay, 133. 
Kosciusko, Gen., 134. 

LABADISTS, Journal of, 197. 
La Naudiere, Louis T., 
69, 100, 1 02. 



Lamb, Col. Anthony, 133. 
Mrs. Martha J, 

quoted, 190. 
Langdon, Gen., sketch of, 


Lee, Gen., 247. 
Le Carm, Father Joseph, 


Le Clerq, Pare, 257. 
Lincoln, Gen , 1 19. 
Little Britain, L. I., 196. 
Lively, a transport, 203. 
London, a ship, 82. 
Long-Island, battle of, 1 86, 

188; Indians of, 187. 
Loretto (Lorette), 79. 
Lossing, Dr., quoted, 118, 

Lotterlob, Maj., 160. 

MACAULAY, Lord, quoted, 

McCrea, Jenny, 95, 126. 

- Kay, Capt., 83. 

- Kenna, an Irishman, 

McLean, Adj. -Gen., 58. 
Maidens-Hill (Maiden 

Lane), 182. 
Manheim, Pa., 219. 
Maquiere, river, 42. 
Markham, J. C., 126. 
Marlborough, 153. 
Marshall- House, 102. 

Mascouche, river, 47. 

Maskononge, river, 47. 

Medford, 154. 

Meiborn, Maj., 109. 

Melsheimer, Chaplain, his 
journal, 109. 

Mengen, Col. de., 141, 
1 60; Grenadier Battal 
ion of, 176. 

Mersereau, Wm., S., 245. 

Messero, a commissioner, 


Miller, Charles W., 245. 
Millerd, Nelson, 95. 
Meyer, Lieut., 123. 
Miquelon Island, 192. 
Mohawk river, 104. 
Monmouth, Battle of, 132 


Monnin, Capt., 1 16. 
Montgomery, Gen., 66. 
Montreal, 13. 
Montresor, Col. Jas., 127, 

Montresor, Col. John, 127, 


Morgan, Gen., 126. 
Mud-Bank, 212. 
Miihlenfeldt, Lieut, 109. 
Munsell Sons, 168. 
Mystic Village, 154. 

NEGROES, status of, in colo 
nies, 142. 



New-City (Lansingburgh, 

N.Y.), 136. 
Newport, 177, 209. 

town, 196. 
- Utrecht, 195. 

York Island, 188. 
Niagara, 76. 
Nicholson, Gen., 134. 
Nobletown, 144. 
Northampton, 135. 
Nugent, a habitant, 49. 

O CONNELL, Capt, 109, 


Ogilvie, Rev. John, 190. 
Oswego, ill. 

PARISH, description of a, 1 3. 
Parishes : 

Au Loup, 47. 

Barties, 47. 

Batiscamp, 38, 44, 55. 

Bel Neville, 50. 

Cap Sante, 42. 

Chambeant, 42. 

Chambly, 50. 

Champlin, 44. 

Chantilly, 40. 

L Aubugmere, 42. 

Les Grondines, 43, 55. 

Machitiche, 47. 

Maskinonge, 47. 

Pointe au Lac, 46. 

Parishes : 

Rosencour, 44. 

St. Anne, 43, 55; street 

^ of, 258. 

St. Antoine, 47, 50, 54. 

- Augustine, 41. 

- Charles, 50, 258. 

- Denis, 49, 54. 
St. Francis d Assisi, 

St. Foye, 40. 

- Louis, 50. 

- Magdalene, 44. 
Ricom, 44. 

- Therese, 50. 

- Thomas, 50. 
Tonnancour, 46. 

Paulus-Hook (Jersey 

City), 133, 144. 
Pausch, Capt, 115; journal 

of, quoted, 120, 121. 
Penn, William, 214. 
Perry, Prof. A. L., quoted, 

135, HO. 

Pfluger, Lieut, 160. 
Philadelphia, 162,177,214, 

217, 225. 
Phillips, General, 120, 124, 


Plunders Neck, 198. 
Pointe aux Trembles. 
au Deux Terres. 

Porbeck, H. von, 237. 
Portsmouth, N. H., 242. 
Poultney, Vt, 85, 88. 



Prince Frederick s Regi 
ment, 54. 

Providence, a transport, 

Prospect Hill, near Boston, 
153, 155, 1 66. 

Provost, Gen., 237, 238. 

Putnam, Gen. Israel, 88, 
156, 222. 

QUAKER HILL, battle of, 

228, 256. 
Quebec, 13, 20, 38, 39,55, 

67; siege of, 258; upper 

town of, 258; Historical 

Society of, 109. 

Rantzan, Count, 123. 
Rattle-snakes, soup made 
from, 87; stories of, 219, 


Rickrodt, Lieut., 109. 
Red-Bank, 212. 
Reed, Gen. Geo., 149. 
Reineking, master of 

horse, 109. 
Riedesel, Maj.-Gen., 21,35, 

37, 51, 66, 67, 70, 104, 

114, 1 20, . 1 54, 156, 163, 

Riedesel, Madame, 21, 74, 

102, 167. 

Riedesel, regiment of, 54. 
Rhetz, Gen. von, 74. 
, regiment of, 40, 52, 

55, 99, 104, 176. 
Rhode-Island, 228. 
Richelieu river (Sorel and 

St. John s), 48. 
Recollects, Convent of, 46, 

67; sketch of, 256. 
Rodgers, Mrs. Almy W., 

Rogers, Gen. Horatio, 

quoted, 52, 65, 69, 116, 

128, 1 68. 
Rosengarten, J. G., 

quoted, 140, 218. 
Rouge, Cape, 40. 
Rowson, Mrs., 201. 
Royal-Savage, flag-ship, 

Rutland, Mass., 158, 176. 

Rutledge, Gov. George, 

ST. ANNE, 66, 72, 82. 
- river, 43, 44. 

- John s river, 51. 

- Francis river, 45. 

- Lawrence river, 13, 
40, 41, 44, 48, 61, 76, 80, 

^ 94- 
St. Maurice river, 45. 

- Leger, Col., 70, 104, 
i ii. 



St. Luc, de la, Corn, 69. 
- Sacrament, lake, 88, 
St. Coick s Mill, 100, 102. 

Pierre, Lac, 46, 48. 

Sanford, Hon. John, 127. 
Sandy-Hook, 193, 231, 

Sante Cap, 42, 56. 

Saratoga, 99, no; battles 
of, 113, 120, 124, 132, 

i79> 184. 

Saratoga, Monument As 
sociation, sketch of, 126. 

Saratoga, description of, 


Saltsburgers, 234. 

Saur, Christopher, 221. 
, Peter 204. 

Savannah river, 234; town 

^ of, 236. 

Scaghticoke, 135. 

Scammell, Gen. Alex., 
quoted, 247. 

Schlagenteufle, Jr., 109. 

Schmidt, Dr., 160. 

Schneider, Ensign, 91. 

Schnieck, Capt. von, 109. 

Schonwald, Count, 109. 

Schuyler, Gen. Philip, i T i, 
126, 156. 

Schuyler, Col. Peter, 134. 

Schuylkill river, 216. 

Seidensticker, Prof. O., 
quoted, 218. 

Seymour, Hon. Horatio, 

quoted, 126. 
Skene, Lieut.-Gov., 98. 
Skinner, Thos., quoted, 


Skinner, Battalion of, 231. 
Sorel river, 48. 
Spangenberg, Lieut, 99. 
Specht, Lieut-Col., 55. 

, color-bearer, 109. 
Springfield, East, 146. 

, West, 146. 
Starin, Hon. John H., 127. 
Staten Island, 185, 188, 


Staunton, Va., 178, 180. 
Steuben, Maj.-Gen., 186. 

, names of his staff, 

Stillwater, N. Y., 98, 112, 

Sterling, Lord Wm. Alex., 

56, 96, 244. 
Stone, Wm. L., his Hist. 

of New York quoted, 

Stone, Wm. L., his map 

of Saratoga Battle- 

grounds, 120. 
Streitzer, Cornet, 109. 
Sullivan, Gen., 244, 247. 
Swords, Thos., 1 13. 
Sword s House, 112. 
Sylvester, N. B., quoted, 



TEMPLE, Charlotte, 201, 
Tetes de Boule Nation, 71. 
Three Rivers, 13, 37, 45, 

.55> 7i, 82. 
Tielmann, Commissioner, 


Tonnancour, Col., 37, 45. 

, Demoiselle, 71. 
Trenton, Battle of, 132. 
Tucker, Lieut. Thos., 201. 
Tudor, Judge Adv.-Gen., 


Tulpehocken, Pa., 218. 
Turkey Hill, battle of,,228. 
Tyringham, 144. 

UNICORN, frigate, 230. 
Unverza, Lieut, 57. 
Ursaline Convent, 37, 46. 

VALLEY HILLS, Pa., 216. 
Van Schaack, a Tory, 137. 
Volkner, Thos., a farmer, 

Walker, Major Benjamin, 

sketch of, 244. 
Walmarth Regiment, 230. 
Walworth, Mrs. E. H., 124. 
Ward s Island, 200. 
Washington, General, 167, 


Watertown, 153. 
Weira, river, 209. 
Weisenfelds, Gen. Fred. 

H., sketch of, 132. 
Weissenbach Regiment, 

Wenzens, a sect, sketch 

of, 223. 

Weser river, 43. 
Westfield, Mass., 146. 
Westminster, Vt, 109. 
West Point, 133. 
Westtown, 153. 
White Plains, battle of, 


Whitplain township, 223. 
Wickel, a preacher, 223. 
Wiesland, ship, 41. 
Wilkinson, Gen., 121. 
Williams, Major Griffith, 

1 14, 1 1 6, 127. 
Williams, Colonel George, 

last survivor of battles 

of Saratoga, 116, 121. 
Williamsburgh, 180. 
Winslow, Gen., 134. 
Winter Hill, near Boston, 

153, 1 66, 173. 
Wolesworth, a farmer, 137. 
Worcester, Mass., 149. 
Wiirtele, Fred. C, 257. 

ionable promenade, 1 82. 


Pages 13, 41. For " Bee Island," read " Bic Is 

Page 48. For " Isle au Custus," read " Isle au 

Page 71, 6th line from bottom, For " Fetes" read 

Page 84, last line of note. For "New Hampshire" 
read " New York." 

Page 94, 8th line from top, for "any" read "every." 

Page 128, note. For " Gen. I. Watts de Peyster " 
read " J. Watts de Peyster." 

Page 199, 5th line from bottom. For "pear" read 

Page 218, ist line of note. Omit "Jr." after "J. 
G. Rosengarten." 

Page 245, note. For " Rogers " read " Rodgers. " 




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