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night, 800

men,

under Lieutenant-colonel Smith, set out for Concord.

Notwithstanding the precautions of the British general, the vigilant Warren had penetrated his designs; and hardly had the expedition started when messengers were despatched by different routes to give the alarm. A lantern was suspended in the steeple of the North Church, which was seen by the people of Charlestown, and they also sent trusty men to alarm the country. Smith had not advanced far before he heard the sound of musketry and the ringing of bells; and, apprehending danger, he sent back for reënforcements, and threw out a detachment in advance to secure the bridges.

Before five the next morning, the British advanced guard, commanded by Major Pitcairn, reached Lexington (see Map, p. 84], ten miles from Boston, on the Concord road. On the green, a body of minute-men, hastily gathered and poorly equipped, were ready to receive them. “Disperse, ye rebels,” cried the British leader. The Americans stood their ground: Pitcairn discharged his pistol at them, and a volley from his men followed. A few shots were returned; but the Americans gave way, with a loss of y men.

The main body now came up, and the march was resumed for Concord. They arrived there at seven.

The inhabitants had received news of the intended movement about midnight, and had conveyed part of the arms and ammunition to a place of safety. The rest was destroyed. Meantime a large body of minute-men had assembled, and a skirmish took place, which resulted in the loss of several on both sides, and the retreat of the British from a bridge which they had seized.

286. The work of destruction having been completed, the British began to return. This was the signal for the brave yeomanry of the surrounding country. Posting themselves

means were taken for alarming the country? Before he had advanced far, what did Smith hear? What did this lead him to do? Who commanded the advanced guard ? Before five, April 19th, what place did Pitcairn and his men reach? (See Map, p. 84.-Where is Lexington ? In what direction from Boston? In what direction is Concord from Lexington? How far ?] Whom did the British find drawn up on the green! Give an account of the battle of Lexington. Where did the British then go? What took place at Concord ? 286. After destroying the stores, what was the next step of the British? Describe the retreat from Con

1775]

RETREAT OF THE BRITISH,

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in houses, and behind sheds, trees, and fences on the roadside, they poured in an unremitting and deadly fire on the retreating army. Even boys and old men hastened to strike a blow for their country. Thus for miles the British marched, their officers falling and their ranks thinning under a continuous fire which they were unable to return with effect. Colonel Smith was severely wounded, and his men, sinking under fatigue and discouraged by their losses, were in danger of being entirely cut off, when they were met, eleven miles from Boston, by a timely reënforcement of 1,000 men under Lord Percy. Received by their comrades in a hollow square, they threw themselves on the ground, and were allowed a short rest to fit them for the balance of the march.

The patriots, notwithstanding Lord Percy's field-pieces, continued the pursuit to Charlestown. Here the disastrous retreat terminated, the British having lost 65 killed, 180 wounded, and 28 taken prisoners. On the opposite side, 59 were killed, 39 wounded, and 5 missing. The first battle of the Revolution was fought, and its result was not such as to discourage the colonists.

287. At this early period were commenced those acts of savage cruelty which too often disgraced the British troops in the course of the war. Percy allowed his men to plunder and fire a number of houses on the route. In one of these a woman was lying sick, and her child had taken refuge under the bed. The former was barbarously dragged out of the house, and one of the marauders, seeing the boy's foot protrude, wantonly pinned it to the floor with his bayonet. No groan escaped the little hero; but the merciless soldiers reduced the house to ashes and hurried on to other outrages.

cord. What saved Smith and his men from destruction ? On meeting Percy's reënforcement, what did the weary troops do? How far did the patriots continue the pursuit ? What was the loss on both sides ? 287. What commenced at this early period? What did Percy allow his men to do? What instance of barbarity is mentioned ?

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CHAPTER II.

CAPTURE OF TICONDEROGA. —WASHINGTON ELECTED COM

MANDER-IN-CHIEF.

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288. It was felt that the war had begun in earnest, and 20,000 patriots soon assembled in the vicinity of Boston, surrounded the city, and threatened to cut off the British army from provisions. Meanwhile, the legislature of Connecticut resolved to strike a blow. A committee was sent to the frontier with $1,000, to fit out an expedition against Ticonderoga. The command was given to Colonel E'-than Allen, already distinguished as a leader of the “Green Mountain Boys”. The company so called had been organized three years before, to prevent New York from extending her jurisdiction over the region they occupied, now known as Vermont. Colonel Allen was assisted by Benedict Arnold, afterwards a traitor, but then a brave and esteemed patriot. An army 270 strong was soon collected on the east side of Lake Champlain (see Map, p. 169], opposite Ticonderoga. It was intended to cross in the night, but so few boats were at hand. that at daylight on the 10th of May (1775) only the officers and 83 men had landed on the western shore.

Not daring to wait for more, lest he should be discovered and cut off by the garrison, Alen addressed his little band and marched directly to the fort. The surprise was complete. As Allen entered the sally-port at the head of his men, a sentinel snapped his gun at him, and ran to raise the alarm. The Americans followed, and the garrison were roused from sleep only to find themselves prisoners. Colonel Allen made his way to the commander's apartment and ordered him to surrender. “By what authority ?” demanded

288. What immediately followed the battle of Lexington? What was done by the legislature of Connecticut ? To whom was the command of the expedition against Ticonderoga given ? As what was Ethan Allen already distinguished ? For what had the company called “ the Green Mountain Boys” been organized ? By whom was Allen assisted ? How large a force was raised! Where did they rendezvous ? What difficulty did they experience in crossing the lake? What was the consequence? What was Allen now obliged to do? Give an account of

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SUBSEQUENT CAREER OF ETHAN ALLEN.

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48 men,

the astonished officer. Raising his sword as if to strike, Allen replied, “In the name of the great Jehovah and the Continental Congress. Resistance was vain, and the British commander was obliged to surrender the post, together with

122

cannon, several vessels, abundant stores, and-a large supply of powder, which was much needed in the

camp at Boston. Two days afterwards, Crown Point was taken without resistance. These achievements, performed without the loss of a single man, greatly encouraged the colonists.

289. The subsequent career of the brave but eccentric Allen is worthy of relation. In the autumn of 1775, he attempted the capture of Montreal, but, after a desperate struggle, was made a prisoner. He was sent to England, and suffered much on the voyage from being confined with 34 others in a room about 20 feet square. This was all forgotten, however, on the return voyage, when an opportunity for ample revenge occurred. A conspiracy was formed for killing the captain and taking possession of the vessel; but Allen, though on his way to a prison-ship, and aware of the sufferings in store for him, refused to take part in it. Exchanged at last for a British officer, he was made commander of the Vermont militia. The British tried to buy him over, but in vain.

290. Love of country was the ruling passion in Ethan Allen's breast. His brother favored the British, aiding them with his means, and sending them from time to time such information as he thought would be of service. When Ethan ascertained this, he at once laid the fact before the authorities, advising them to confiscate his brother's property and apply it to the defence of the country.—His eventful life terminated in 1789.

291. The same day that Ethan Allen captured Ticonderoga, the Continental Congress commenced its second session at Philadelphia. Among its members were Thomas Jefferson,

the surprise of the fort. What was surrendered along with the fort ? Two days after, what post was taken ? What was the effect of these achievements on the colonists? 289. What is related of Allen's subsequent history? To what office was he finally raised ? What attempt was made by the British ? 290. What is said of Ethan Allen's love of country? To prove this, what story is told respecting him and his brother? When did Ethan Allen die ? 291. What body met on the same day that Ticonderoga was captured ? What new members made their appearance in Congress ? What is said of John Adams ? For what did Congress still hope? What steps did they take in preparation for war? Whom did they appoint commander-in-chief? Relate the circumstances. 292. How was the news of the battle of Lexington received ? What took place in a remote part of Virginia ? Who was the person that made the announcement? What took place at Charlotte, N. C.? For what as yet were the northern patriots contending!

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whom we have met before, listening to the eloquence of Henry, and John Adams, a native of Massachusetts, now in his fortieth year. Distinguished for his industry and business habits, Adams was one of the most useful members of the House. He had constantly opposed the encroachments of Parliament, yet had shown his independence by defending the British soldiers concerned in the “Boston Massacre ”, on their trial for that offence.

Though still hoping for concessions from the mother country, Congress vigorously prepared for war. Bills of credit were issued to the amount of $3,000,000. The appointment of a commander-in-chief next engaged attention. John Adams, in a powerful speech, set forth the high qualities which should be possessed by the person selected for this office, and concluded by nominating one of their own body, in whom they were all combined-George Washington, of Virginia. The House was taken by surprise, for but few had known the speaker's intention. No one was more surprised than Washington himself, who immediately left the room. The next day he was unanimously elected.

292. The news of the stand taken at Lexington rapidly spread throughout the country, and was everywhere received with enthusiasm. In a remote part of Virginia, a tall young man hastened to bear the news to a company in the woods. He expressed his feelings in a fervid speech, and they lost no time in arming for liberty. This youth was John Marshall, the future chief-justice. Just a month after the battle, the news reached Charlotte, N. C. The people immediately met, declared themselves freed from allegiance to the king, and promised to defend the independence thus asserted with their lives and fortunes. This was the first proposal to throw off the British yoke. Their countrymen at the north were

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