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Putnam's remarkable presence of mind was again displayed at Fort Edward. The barracks caught fire; and, separated from them only by a thin partition, was a magazine containing 300 barrels of gunpowder. The men fled in alarm from the scene of danger; but Putnam persisted in pouring water on the flames, put out the fire, and, at the expense severe burns, saved the fort. He was in the field ploughing, when he heard of the battle of Lexington. Leaving his plough where it was, without even changing his clothes, he hastened to Cambridge. The British offered him the rank of major-general and a large sum of money, if he would desert the American cause; but the sturdy patriot scornfully refused, and paid them for the insult on the bloody field of Bunker Hill. He appears to have directed the movements of the patriots on that occasion jointly with Col. Prescott.

CHAPTER IV.

INVASION OF CANADA.

299. The day before the battle of Bunker Hill, Washington accepted the office of commander-in-chief, expressing his sense of the high responsibilities it involved, and declining to receive any remuneration except the payment of his expenses. After removing his mother to a place of safety, he set out at once for Cambridge, where he arrived July 2d, 1775. He found an army of 14,500 men, with little or no knowledge of military manoeuvres. Months of constant drilling were spent in making them effective soldiers. There were no engineers; and almost every difficulty that can be conceived had to be encountered in conducting the siege. Even powder was wanting; and it was with great difficulty that a small supply was obtained. Shortly afterwards, where was he surprised by the Indians ? How did he escape ? What other story is told, illustrating Putnam's presence of mind? How was he engaged when he heard of the battle of Lexington ? What did he do? What offer was made him by the British? How was it received ? 299. What did Washington do on the day before the battle of Bunker Hill ?

What state of things did he find, on arriv

What were his next movements ?

1775]

ARNOLD'S EXPEDITION.

215

300. On the 6th of July, Congress, in an able manifesto, set forth its reasons for taking up arms. It also established a line of posts for the communication of intelligence, under the superintendence of Franklin. This same month, Georgia, which had not before taken part in the movement, joined her sister colonies, and chose delegates to Congress.

301. Knowing that large stores were collected at Quebec, and believing that the people would join in the Revolution if opportunity offered, Congress determined on an expedition against Canada, and placed General Montgomery at its head. St. John's surrendered to the invaders on the 3d of November; the country was overrun, and Montreal was taken. The time for which many of the American soldiers had enlisted, now ran out; and, as they insisted on returning, Montgomery was left with no more than 300 followers to advance upon Quebec.

Meanwhile, 1,100 Americans, under Benedict Arnold, now raised to the rank of colonel, were marching through the northern wilderness of Maine to the succor of their countrymen. No one at the present day can estimate the hardships which that devoted band were called on to endure; now forcing their way through tangled thickets and over pathless mountains; and now wading through swollen rivers, pushing their boats before them, or borne away by rapids, and struggling for life amid the waves ;-worn out, sick, cold, hungry, disheartened. Not a few gave up the expedition, and returned to Massachusetts. With some of his bravest men, Arnold pushed on to a French village for supplies, leaving the rest of his force in a most critical position. The last ox was killed and distributed; the last dog was eaten with avidity; then roots and moose-skin moccasins were their only resource. When the aid sent back by Amold reached the famished band, they had eaten nothing for two days. ing at Cambridge? 300. What was done by Congress in July, 1775? What action was taken by Georgia ? 301. Whither did Congress determine to send an expedition? What led them to do so ? Who was placed at its head? What places were taken by Montgomery? What then put a stop to his victorious movements ? How many remained with him, to proceed against Quebec ? Who was advancing to his aid? With how many men ? By what route? Give an account of the difficulties encountered by Arnold's men.

How did he save them

Even such suffering, however, could not discourage these brave hearts. Among them were not a few noted in later times-Morgan, Greene, and Meigs [megz], all benefactors of their country,--and Aaron Burr, then a youth of 20, afterwards vice-president of the United States.

At last, surmounting incredible obstacles, the heroic band stood before Quebec, and effected a junction with the army of Montgomery, who took command of the whole. Together they numbered but 900 effective men. A commander less brave and energetic would have shrunk from attacking those massive walls with so insignificant a force. Montgomery hesitated not; he had been there before under Wolfe, and remembered his glorious example. After besieging the place three weeks, and finding that his few small cannon could make no impression on its defences, on the last day of the year 1775, with the approval of his officers and men, he prepared for an assault.

302. Four divisions issued from the American camp, two of which were to make feigned attacks for the purpose of distracting the enemy's attention. Montgomery was to approach along the St. Lawrence, Arnold by the St. Charles; and both, having united their forces, were to storm the Prescott gate. Montgomery, having toiled over

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from perishing? What was their condition when relief arrived ? Mention some of Arnold's followers who afterwards became noted. At last, when did they arrive? Who took the command? How many effective men were found in both divisions ? What was the prospect of success? How long did Montgomery besiege Quebec ? What did he find? On what did he then resolve? What day was selected for the attack? 302. (See Map. At the confluence of what two

1775]

FALL OF MONTGOMERY.

217

amid drifting snow which nearly blinded him, saw a rude blockhouse defended by a battery of three-pounders. “Men of New York,” he cried, "you will not fear to follow where your general leads! March on.” Rushing at the head of his troops to the assault, he was almost immediately swept down, with both his aides and a number of privates, by a discharge of grape-shot. Disheartened by the loss of their leader, the rest of the division retreated to Wolfe's Cove.

Amold's narrow path to the lower city was commanded by muskets and cannon. Advancing at the head of his division, he received a ball in the leg, which obliged him to leave the field, and give up the command to Captain Morgan. The first barrier was carried, and the city entered. But, with only 200 men, most of whose muskets were rendered useless by the snow, it was impossible for Morgan either to carry the defences before him or to make good a retreat. Overpowering forces gathered around, and he was compelled to surrender. In this assault 160 Americans were killed, and 426 made prisoners. The British loss was only 20.

303. The death of Montgomery was regarded as a national calamity. Even in Britain, eulogies on his character were delivered. Arnold, with his remaining force, encamped about three miles from the city, and continued the blockade. He was superseded in April, 1776, by Gen. Wooster, who, the following month, gave way to Gen. Thomas. Quebec still maintained a successful resistance; and rumors of Carleton's approach, with a powerful army, soon reached the American

camp. A hasty retreat was made, and the whole of Canada was recovered by the British.

rivers is Quebec situated? What village near Point Levi? In what direction from the city was the battle-field of Wolfe and Montcalm ?] State Montgomery's plan of attack. Give an account of Montgomery's movements and fall.

Give an account of Arnold's movements. To whom did he leave the command ? What advantage did Morgan at first gain? What was the final result? What was the loss on both sides ? 303. How was the death of Montgomery regarded ? What course did Arnold pursue ? By whom was he superseded ? What obliged the Americans to retreat ?

10

CHAPTER V.

SIEGE AND EVACUATION OF BOSTON.

304. The idea of a complete separation from Britain, originated, as we have seen, in North Carolina, began to gain ground in the colonies; but Congress still determined on a last appeal. A petition for redress was sent to England, but received no attention from either king or Parliament. On the contrary, acts were passed prohibiting trade with the colonies, and authorizing the capture of American vessels, the hiring of German soldiers, and the transportation of 25,000 additional English troops to the new world. On this, Congress gave up all hope of reconciliation, and prepared for a vigorous defence. Military stores were collected. Powder was bought in foreign ports, and its manufacture was commenced at home. Privateers were commissioned, from the bold attacks of which British commerce suffered much till the termination of the war.

305. In the fall of 1775, Gen. Gage was superseded by Sir William Howe, after having sent British men-of-war to ravage different parts of the coast. Falmouth (fal-muth], now Portland, Maine, was levelled to the ground. Other places were threatened. Newport escaped only by contributing a weekly supply for the fleet.

306. The British still had hopes of deterring New York from taking part against the king, and Governor Tryon was authorized to use persuasion, threats, and even bribery, with its citizens for that purpose. Congress, however, baffled his efforts, by ordering that all persons dangerous to the liberties of America should be seized; for, on this, the governor took refuge on a British ship.-Lord Dunmore was still giving

304. In the hope of reconciliation, what step was taken by Congress ? How was the petition received ? What acts were passed by Parliament? How did Congress then feel? What defensive steps were taken ? 305. In the fall of 1775, · who was made British commander-in-chief? What place was bombarded? How did Newport escape a similar fate? 306. What means did Gov. Tryon take for retaining the people of New York in their allegiance? How did Congress baffle

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