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XX.

1782.

through North Carolina to Charlestown. But his BOOK lordship still lingered, and still indulged eager and fruitless hopes of succour. York Town being situated nearly at the extremity of a narrow peninsula, inclosed between York River to the north and James River to the south, it was invested with great ease and advantage by an enemy who commanded the navigation of the two rivers.

On the 14th of October the besiegers, notwithstanding the well-directed and incessant fire of the enemy, had advanced far in their second parallel. Being greatly incommoded in their approaches by two redoubts at the distance of two hundred yards from the British lines, it was determined to attack them at the same time by different detachments of French and Americans. Actuated by the spirit of emulation, both redoubts were carried sword in hand with resistless impetuosity. On marching to the assault, the general exclamation was, “ Remember New London !" a place on the coast of Connecticut, which the renegade Arnold, in one of his predatory expeditions, had recently taken and destroyed, putting the troops which defended it to the sword. . On the submission, nevertheless, of the British stationed in the two redoubts, their lives were sparei: and when the Americans were afterwards interrogated why they did not carry their previous resolve into execution, they replied, “ they could not tell

XX.

1782.

war.

BOOK how to put men to death while begging on their

knees for quarter.” By this time the batteries of the besiegers were covered with one hundred pieces of heavy ordnance; and the British works, enfiladed in almost every part, and nearly demolished, could scarcely mount a single gun. In this extremity no other resource remained than to endeavour to transport the garrison across York River to Glocester Point, opposite to York Town, where works had

been also erected, and were still occupied by part of Lord Corn-the British army. But this intention being totally his army, frustrated by a violent storm after the embarkation soners of had actually commenced, lord Cornwallis was re

duced to the hard and terrible necessity of proposing terms of capitulation, which were granted only on condition of his lordship's surrendering himself, and the forces under his command, to the amount of above 7000 men, prisoners of war. The honor of marching out with colors flying, which had been refused to general Lincoln on his giving up Charlestown, was now refused to lord Cornwallis ; and general Lincoln was appointed to receive the submission of the army of York Town precisely in the same way his own had been conducted eighteen months before.

Such was the final issue of the eager hopes and sanguine expectations excited by the first brilliant successes of this noble and gallant commander.

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1782

The joy of the Americans on the capture of a second BOOK royal army was unbounded. In a circuitous march of 1100 miles, from Charlestown to Williamsburg, every place through which they passed had experienced the effects of their rapacity: and instead of endeavouring to conciliate the minds of the inhabitants by acts of lenity, they alienated even those who were most friendly, by their relentless and systematic severity. Yet was lord Cornwallis, as an individual, generous, disinterested, and humane ; but the favorite and avowed maxim of the British government at this time, a maxim from which the military commanders seem not to have thought themselves at liberty to depart, was, “ that the extreme of rigor, by making the war intolerable, and resistance hopeless, was in effect the greatest mercy, and the mode of all others to be adopted, therefore, by the parental affection of Britain, for reclaim ing his majesty's deluded subjects of America.” A marble column, with a suitable inscription and trophies, was ordered by the congress to be erected at York Town, in commemoration of this glorious and decisive event; and a solemn thanksgiving to Solemn Almighty God was appointed throughout all the thinksStates of the Union, “ for the signal successes with thou shares which he had vouchsafed to bless the armies of of the America, combating in defence of their rights and liberties.”

Union.

BOOK
XX.

1782. Commo

stone's ex

The remaining miscellaneous transactions of the year must now be succinctly noticed.

Early in the spring governor Johnstone, late one dore John- of the commissioners to America, was invested with he Capetora naval command, and with a considerable squadron Good Hope.was detached on an expedition to the Cape of

Good Hope. The court of Versailles, knowing the present inability of the States General to protect their foreign dominions, sent a superior squadron under M. Suffrein, to counteract the designs of the English ; and coming up with them at port Praya, in the island of St. Jago, the French admiral scrupled not to violate the neutrality of the Portuguese flag, by attacking the squadron of commodore Johnstone while it lay dispersed and scattered, unsuspicious of danger, in the harbour. Happily the French, rather by extraordinary efforts of valor on the part of the British seamen, than of skill on that of their commander, were beaten off; but immediately proceeding to the Cape, they effectually secured that important settlement from any hostile attempt. Commodore Johnstone,on his subsequent and tardy arrival, was obliged to content himself with the capture of several Dutch East-Indiamen in Saldanha Bay; and those of his ships which were destined for the East Indies prosecuting their voyage thither, the commodore returned home with his prizes from his inglorious though lucrative expedition.

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1781.

engagement between the

In the course of the summer an engagement took BOOK place off the Dogger Bank, between an English squadron commanded by admiral Hyde Parker, and

Obstinate a Dutch squadron of equal force under admiral Zoutman, who had under convoy the Baltic trade we bound to the Texel. On perceiving the English and Dutch fleet bearing down, the Dutch admiral, who was to fleets, off

the Dogger leeward, lay-to, and the English were suffered to Bank. approach within half musquet shot without firing a gun, when a dreadful cannonade commenced, which was kept up without interruption for three hours and forty minutes; and the action then ceased only because the ships on both sides, from the damages they had respectively sustained, were no longer found manageable. The Dutch, after some time, bore away with their convoy for the Texel, which they reached with great difficulty, one of their largest ships sinking before they could make the harbour.

Admiral Parker, who had unavailingly applied to the admiralty for a reinforcement, returned in great discontent and in a shattered condition to the Nore, where he received the signal honor of a visit from his majesty on board his own ship, and was offered knighthood as the reward of his valor. But his haughty refusal showed how little he was flattered by these petty and puerile distinctions; and no acts of royal condescension could alter his resolution of resigning his command.

WOL. VII.

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