Major Arséne Lacarriére Latour.
Historical Memoir of the War in West Florida and Louisiana in 1814-15: Appendices.
TABLE OF CONTENTS.
- Copy of a letter from vice-admiral Cochrane to Mr. Monroe
- Copy of a letter from Mr. Monroe to vice-admiral Cochrane, &c.
- An extract from the National Intelligencer
- Copy of a letter from vice-admiral Cochrane to the secretary of state
- Anonymous letter written from the Havanna
- Proclamation by lietenant-colonel Nicholls
- Letter from the same to Mr. Laffite
- Directing orders by W. H. Percy, captain of the British
ship the Hermes, &c.
- Letter from the same to captain Lockyer, &c.
- Letter from Mr. Laffite to captain Lockyer
- Letter from Mr. Laffite to Mr. Blanque
- Letter from the same to the same
- Letter from Mr. Laffite to governor Claiborne
- Letter from Mr. Laffite the elder, to Mr. Blanque
- Circular letter from the war department to the governors
of the several states
- Extract of a letter from general Jackson to governor Claiborne
- Extract of a letter from general Jackson to governor Claiborne
- Militia general orders
- After general orders
- Order of the day for the first coloniel battalion of the royal
- Resolutions by the citizens of New Orleans
- Address from the committee of public defence to their
- Resolution by the committee of public defence
- Proclamation by general Jackson to the people of
- Proclamation by general Jackson to the free coloured
inhabitants of Louisiana
- Anonymous letter to commodore Patterson
- Letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary of the
- Report made by lieutenant Thomas Ap. Catesby Jones to
- Address by general Jackson to the militia of New Orleans
- Military order from the adjutant-general's office directed
to the citizens of New Orleans
- An act from the legislature of Louisiana to grant delays, &c.
- Letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary of the
- Copy of a letter from general Jackson to the secretary at
- Letter from the same to the same
- Copy of a letter from captain Henley, United States navy, to
- Letter from general Jackson to the secretary at war
- Copy of a letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary
of the navy
- Letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary of the
- Copy of a letter from general Jackson to the secretary at
- Copy of a letter from the same to the same
- Report made by colonel Hayne to general Jackson
- Copy of a letter from general Jackson to the secretary at
- Letter from the adjutant-general R. Butler to brigadier
- Report of killed, wounded, &c.
- Letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary of the
- Address of general Jackson to the troops stationed on the
right bank of the Mississippi
- Provisional articles of exchange for prisoners
- Letter from general Jackson to the secretary at war
- Letter from general Jackson to reverend abbé Dubourg
- Defence of fort St. Philip — extract of a letter from general
Jackson to the secretary at war
- Copy of a letter from major Overton to general Jackson
- Address by the rev. abbé Duborg to general Jackson at the
ceremony of thanksgiving
- General Jackson's answer
- Letter from general Jackson to the mayor of New Orleans
- Letter from governor Claiborne to general Thomas
- Letter from governor Claiborne to general Carroll
- Letter from governor Claiborne to general Adair
- Letter from governor Claiborne to general Coffee
- Letter from governor Claiborne to colonel Hinds
- Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson
- Letter from admiral Cochrane to general Jackson
- Another from the same to the same
- Another letter from general Lambert to general Jackson
- Letter from general Jackson to admiral Cochrane
- Another from the same to the same
- Letter from general Winchester to the secretary at war
- Letter from colonel Lawrence to general Jackson
- Articles of capitulation of fort Bowyer
- General orders relating to an inquiry into the conduct of
- Address of general Jackson to the soldiers and citizens of
- Letter from general Keane to general Jackson
- Letter from general Jackson to the secretary at war
- Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson
- Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert
- Letter from the same to the same
- Letter from major Woodruff to admiral Cochrane
- Letter from general Lambert to major Woodruff
- Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson
- Letter from general Lambert to major Woodruff
- Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson.
- Letterfrom general Jackson to general Lambert.
- Letterfrom general Jackson to general Lambert.
- Letterfrom major Woodruff to admiral Cochrane.
- Letterfrom general Lambert to major Woodruff.
- Letterfrom general Lambert to general Jackson.
- Letterfrom general Lambert to major Woodruff.
- Letter from general Jackson to the secretary at war
- Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert
- Letter from general Jackson to major-general Lambert
- Letter from general Jackson to major-general Lambert
- Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert
- Letter from the same to major Woodruff
- General orders relative to the treaty of peace
- After general orders, giving communication to the troops
of a letter from the secretary at war
- General orders discharging all the militia
- The treaty of peace with Great Britain
- Address from the city battalion of uniform companies to
- General's answer
- Letter from general Jackson to the secretary at war
- Letter from major Woodruff to general Jackson
- Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson
- Resolutions by the congress of the United States relative
to the conduct of the people of Louisiana and others
- Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert
- Resolutions of the legislature of Louisiana
- Proclamation by the president of the United States
- Decision of the court-martial in the case of major Villeré
- Extracts of the proceedings of a court of inquiry relative to the retreat on the right bank of the Mississippi on the 8th January, 1815
- Proceedings of a court of inquiry held in the naval arsenal
at New Orleans, by order of commodore Patterson
- A list of the corps composing the British army
- Staff of the British army
- Letter from Dr. Morrell to the author
- NO. 1. Despatches from admiral Cochrane to John Wilson Crooker, esqr.
Letter from caytain Lockyer to admiral Cochrane
A list of the British killed and wounded in the capture of the American gun-boats
- NO. 2. Letter from major-general Keane to major-general
- NO. 3. Extracts from the journal of the movements of the
- NO. 4. Despatch from general Lambert to lord Bathurst
Return of casualties
- No. 5. Letter from lieutenant-colonel Thornton to major
- No. 6. Letter from admiral Cochrane to John Wilson
- Letter from captain Trowbridge to vice-admiral Cochrane
- No. 7. Letter from general Lambert to earl Bathurst
Return of casualties
- No. 8. Letter from general Lambert to earl Bathurst
- Letters found on board the St. Lawrence
- Address by major-general Jackson to the army, January
Copy of a litter from vice-admiral Cochrane to Mr. Monroe.
His Britannic majesty's ship the Tonnant,
in the Patuxent river, 18th August, 1814.
Sir — Having been called upon by the governor-general of the Canadas to aid him in carrying into effect measures of retaliation against the inhabitants of the United States, for the wanton destruction committed by their army in Upper Canada, it has become imperiously my duty, conformably with the nature of the governor-general's application, to issue to the naval force under my command, an order to destroy and lay waste such towns and districts upon the coast, as may be found assailable.
I had hoped that this contest would have terminated, without my being obliged to resort to severities, which are contrary to the usage of civilized warfare, and as it has been with extreme reluctance and concern that I have found myself compelled to adopt this system of devastation, I shall be equally gratified if the conduct of the executive of the United States will authorize my staying such proceedings, by making reparation to the suffering inhabitants of Upper Canada: thereby manifesting that if the destructive measures pursued by their army were never sanctioned, they will no longer be permitted by the government.
I have the honour to be, sir, with much consideration, your most obedient humble servant,
Copy of a letter from Mr. Monroe to sir Alexander Cochrane, vice-admiral, &c. &c
Department of state, September 6, 1814.
Sir — I have had the honour to receive your letter of the 18th of August, stating, that having been called on by the governorgeneral of the Canadas, to aid him in carrying into effect measures of retaliation against the inhabitants of the United States, for the wanton desolation committed by their army in Upper Canada, it has become your duty, conformably with the nature of the governor-general's application, to issue to the naval force under your command, an order to destroy and lay waste such towns and districts upon the coast as may be found assailable.
It is seen with the greatest surprise, that this system of devastation which has been practised by the British forces, so manifestly contrary to the usage of civilized warfare, is placed by you on the ground of retaliation. No sooner were the United States compelled to resort to war against Great Britain, than they resolved to wage it in a manner most consonant to the principles of humanity, and to those friendly relations which it was desirable to preserve between the two nations, after the restoration of peace. They perceived however with the deepest regret, that a spirit alike just and humane was neither cherished nor acted on by your government. Such an assertion would not be hazarded, if it was not supported by facts, the proof of which has perhaps already carried the same conviction to other nations that it has to the people of these states. Without dwelling on the deplorable cruelties committed by the savages in the British ranks, and in British pay, on American prisoners at the river Raisin, which to this day have never been disavowed or atoned, I refer, as more immediately connected with the subject of your letter, to the wanton desolation that was committed, at Havre-de-Grace, and at Georgetown, early in the Spring 1813. These villages were burnt and ravaged by the naval forces of Great Britain, to the ruin of their unarmed inhabitants, who saw with astonishment that they derived no protection to their property from the laws of war. During the same season, scenes of invasion and pillage, carried on under the �ame authority, were witnessed all along the waters of the Chesapeake, to an extent inflicting the most serious private distress, and under circumstances that justified the suspicion, that revenge and cupidity, rather than the manly motives that should dictate the hostility of the high-minded foe, led to their perpetration. The late destruction of the houses of the government in this city is another act which comes necessarily in view. In the wars of modern Europe, no examples of the kind, even among nations the most hostile to each other, can be traced. In the course of ten years past, the capitals of the principal powers of the continent of Europe have been conquered, and occupied alternately by the victorious armies of each other, and no instance of such wanton and unjustifiable destruction has been seen. We must go back to distant and barbarous ages, to find a parallel for the acts of which I complain.
Although these acts of desolation invited, if they did not impose on the government the necessity of retaliation, yet in no instance has it been authorized. The burning of the village of Newark in Upper Canada, posterior to the early outrages above enumerated, was not executed on that principle. The village of Newark adjoined fort George, and its destruction was justified by the officer who ordered it, on the ground that it became necessary in the military operations there. The act however was disavowed by the government. The burning which took place at Long Point was unauthorized by the government, and the conduct of the officer subjected to the investigation of a military tribunal. For the burning at St. David's, committed by stragglers, the offi'cer who commanded in that quarter was dismissed without a trial, for not preventing it.
I am commanded by the president distinctly to state, that it as little comports with any orders which have been issued to the military and naval commanders of the United States, as it does with the established and known humanity of the American nation, to pursue a system which it appears you have adopted. This government owes it to itself, to the principles which it has e�er held sacred, to disavow, as justly chargeable to it, any such wanton, cruel and unjustifiable warfare.
Whatever unauthorized irregularity may have been committed by any of its troops, it would have been ready, acting on these principles of sacred and eternal obligation, to disavow, and as far as might be practicable, to repair. But in the plan of desolatfng warfare which your letter so explicitly makes known, and which is attempted to be excused on a plea so utterly groundless, the president perceives a spirit of deep-rooted hostility, which, without the evidence of such facts, he could not have believed existed, or would have been carried to such an extremity.
For the reparation of injuries, of whatever nature they may be, not sanctioned by the law of nations, which the military or naval force of either power may have committed, against the other, this government will always be ready to enter into reciprocal arrangements. It is presumed that your government will neither expect nor propose any which are not reciprocal.
Should your government adhere to a system of desolation, so contrary to the views and practice of the United States, so revolting to humanity, and repugnant to the sentiment and usages of the civilized world, whilst it will be seen with the deepest regret, it must and will be met with a determination and constancy becoming a free people, contending in a just cause for their essential rights, and their dearest interests.
I have the honour to be, with great consideration, sir, your most obedient humble servant,
From the National Intelligencer.
We observe it mentioned in some prints, that the late letter of admiral Cochrane to the secretary of state was received before the enemy entered Washington. This is not so. We state the fact, on the most unquestionable authority, that it did not arrive in Washington until late in the night of the 30th of August, and that it was not received by the secretary of state until the morning of the 31st.
The letter was dated on the 18th, probably the very day the, Tonnant arrived in the Patuxent. It affects to give previous notice of an intention to destroy and lay waste our towns, and yet is not even sent off (although antedated) until after this purpose has been accomplished at Washington. This is a very pretty little trick played off by the vice-admiral in his first essay at diplomatic correspondence, and we doubt not has been matter of pleasant chuckling between himself and friend, that accomplished and highbred gentleman admiral George Cockburn. It is worthy of remark, that a near blood relation of the vice-admiral's has lately been convicted in England and sentenced to the pillory for a deception practised upon the public there. The vice appears to run through the family.
Vice-admiral Cochrane to the secretary of state.
His B. M. ship Tonnant, in the Chesapeake, Sept. 19, 1814.
Sir — I had the honour to receive your letter of the 6th inst. this morning, in reply to the one which I addressed to you from the Patuxent.
As I have no authority from my government to enter npon any kind of discussion relative to the points contained in your letter, I have only to regret that there does not appear to be any hope that I shall be authorized to recall my general order; which has been further sanctioned by a subsequent request from lieutenant-general sir George Provost.
A copy of your letter will this day be forwarded by me to England, and until I receive instructions from my government the measures which I have adopted must be persisted in: unless remuneration be made to the inhabitants of the Canadas for the injuries they have sustained from the outrages committed by the troops of the United States.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Havanna, August 8, 1814.
I embrace an opportunity offered for Pensacola, to inform you, that an expedition has sailed from Bermuda for Mobile, who touched and left this on the 11th instant, under the command of colonel Nicholls of the artillery, a brave officer well known in the European wars.
They touched here for aid in gun-boats, small vessels, &c. and for leave to land at Pensacola, all of which were refused by the captain-general. However, I learn that they are determined to land at Pensacola, with or without leave, where they will disembark their park of artillery. The colonel was conveyed with his troops in two sloops of war, the Hermes, commanded by the hon. W. H. Percy, and the Caron, commanded by the hon.
P. Spencer, who, with such vessels as may be on the station, will cooperate with the land forces.
HMS Hermes. 1811.
The brig Orpheus, some time past, landed arms and some officers at Apalachicola, to arrange with the Creek nation for future operations against Mobile, New Orleans and that district of the country, which they effected, and caused the breaking off the treaty.
The whole nation are ready to join the British troops under colonel Nicholls, who will immediately on his arrival issue his proclamation, declaring all slaves who will join their standard free and liberated forever from their masters. He will also issue another to the Indians, promising all the tribes who will join him, to reinstate them in all their lands taken from them by the United States, and to guarantee the same to them forever. Having thus prepared the minds of the negroes and Indians, he will, on the arrival of two or three black regiments, from Nassau, &c. of fine troops, calculated for that climate (who may pass by this next week) push for New Orleans — first having secured and fortified Mobile point, and taken Mobile, as well as placed a force at every point on the lakes, of any importance, as well as Plaquemines, in order to cut off all trade of the Mississippi.
This force with him is small, but he will soon be re-enforced from Bermuda, &c. — the flying artillery appears well calculated for his operations in that country.
When I have stated these facts, it will become your duty, and the duty of every citizen in the state, who has property or a family to protect and defend, to rise in mass, and defeat this most damnable and infamous plan of burning and carnage, the most horrible and atrocious ever before projected by a civilized nation.
You have not a moment to lose; because if they get a footing, it will be very difficult to get clear of them. The commander
the sea-forces, the hon. W. H. Percy, is a very young man, a Scotchman, and mild and gentlemanly, the son of lord Beverly; but the colonel is an impatient blustering Irishman, who was governor of Andant, in the German seas, and apparently brave and cruel.
I have only a moment to insist upon you again to save the state and the property of the planters at this awful crisis.
By lieutenant-colonel Edward Nicholls, commanding his Britannic majesty's forces in the Floridas.
Natives of Louisiana! on you the first call is made to assist in liberating from a faithless, imbecile government, your paternal soil: Spaniards, Frenchmen, Italians, and British, whether settled or residing for a time, in Louisiana, on you, also, I call to aid me in this just cause: the American usurpation in this country must be abolished, and the lawful owners of the soil put in possession. I am at the head of a large body of Indians, well armed, disciplined, and commanded by British officers — a good train of artillery with every requisite, seconded by the powerful aid of a numerous British and Spanish squadron of ships and vessels of war. Be not alarmed, inhabitants of the country, at our approach; the same good faith and disinterestedness which has distinguished the conduct of Britons in Europe, accompanies them here; you will have no fear of litigious taxes imposed on you for the purpose of carrying on an unnatural and unjust war; your property, your laws, the peace and tranquillity of your country, will be guaranteed to you by men who will suffer no infringement of theirs; rest assured that these brave red men only burn with an ardent desire of satisfaction, for the wrongs they have suffered from the Americans, to join you in liberating these southern provinces from their yoko, aud drive them into those limits formerly prescribed by my sovereign. The Indians have pledged themselves, in the most solemn manner, not to injure, in the slightest degree, the persons or properties of any but enemies; to their Spanish or English fathers, a flag over any door, whether Spanish, French, or British, will be a certain protection, nor dare any Indian put his foot on the threshold thereof, under penalty of death From his own countrymen; not even an enemy will an Indian put to death, except resisting in arms, and as for injuring helpless women and children, the red men, by their good conduct and treatment to them, will (if it be possible) make the Americans blush for their more inhuman conduct lately on the Escambia, and within a neutral territory.
Inhabitants of Kentucky, you have too long borne with grievous impositions — the whole brunt of the war has fallen on your brave sons; be imposed on no longer, but either range yourselves under the standard of your forefathers, or observe a strict neutrality; if you comply with cither of these offers, whatever provisions you send down, will be paid for in dollars, and the safety of the persons bringing it, as well as the free navigation of the Mississippi, guaranteed to you.
Men of Kentucky, let me call to your view (and I trust to your abhorrence) the conduct of those factions, which hurried you into this civil, unjust, and unnatural war, at a time when Great Britain was straining every nerve in defence of her own and the liberties of the world — when the bravest of her sons were fighting and bleeding in so sacred a cause — when she was spending millions of her treasure in endeavouring to pull down one of the most formidable and dangerous tyrants that ever disgraced the form of man — when groaning Europe was almost in her last gasp — when Britons alone showed an undaunted front — basely did those assassins endeavour to stab her from the rear; she has turned on them, renovated from the bloody but successful struggle — Europe is happy and free, and she now hastens justly to avenge the unprovoked insult. Show them that you are not collectively unjust; leave that contemptible few to shift for themselves; let those slaves of the tyrant send an embassy to Elba, and implore his aid; but let every honest, upright American, spurn them with united contempt. After the experience of twenty-one years, can you any longer support those brawlers for liberty, who call it freedom, when themselves are free; be no longer their dupes — accept of my offers — every thing I have promised in this paper I guarantee to you, on the sacred honour of a British officer.
Given under my hand at my head-quarters,
Pensacola, this 19th day of August, 1814.
Edward Nicholls to Mr. Laffite, or the commandant at Barataria.
Head-quarters, Pensacola, August 31, 1814.
I have arrived in the Floridas for the purpose of annoying the only enemy Great Britain has in the world, as France and England are now friends. I call on you, with your brave followers, to enter into the service of Great Britain, in which you shall have the rank of a captain; lands will be given to you all, in proportion, to your respective ranks, on a peace taking place, and I invite you on the following terms. Your property shall be guaranteed to you, and your persons protected: in return for which 1 ask you to cease all hostilities against Spain, or the allies of Great Britain. — Your ships and vessels to be placed under the orders of the commanding officer on this station, until the commander-in-chief’s pleasure is known; but I guarantee their fair value at all events. I herewith inclose you a copy of my proclamation to the inhabitants of Louisiana, which will, I trust, point out to you the honourable intentions of my government. You may be an useful assistant to me, in forwarding them; therefore, if you determine, lose no time; The bearer of this, captain M‘Williams, will satisfy you on any other point you may be anxious to learn, as will captain Lockyer of the Sophia, who brings him to you. We have a powerful reenforcement on its way here, and I hope to cut out some other Work for the Americans than oppressing the inhabitants of Louisiana. Be expeditious in your resolves, and rely on the verity of
Your very humble servant,
By the hon. William Henry Percy, captain of his majesty's ship Hermes, and senior officer in the gulf of Mexico.
Having understood that some British merchantmen have been detained, taken into, and sold by the inhabitants of Barataria, I have directed captain Lockyer, of his majesty's sloop Sophia, to proceed to that place, and inquire into the circumstances, with positive orders to demand instant restitution, and in case of refusal to destroy to his utmost every vessel there, as well as to carry destruction over the whole place, and at the same time to assure him of the co-operation of all his majesty's naval forces on this station. I trust at the same time, that the inhabitants of Barataria, consulting their own interest, will not make it necessary to proceed to such extremities — I hold out at the same time, a war instaptly destructive to them; and on tjie other hand, should they be inclined to assist Great Britain in her just and unprovoked war against the United States, the security of their property, the blessings of the British constitution — and should they be inclined to settle on this continent, lands will, at the conclusion of the war, be allotted to them in his majesty's colonies in America. In return for all these concessions on the part of Great Britain, I expect that the directions of their armed vessels will be put into my hands (for which they will be remunerated,) the instant cessation of hostilities against the Spanish government, and the restitution of any undisposed property of that nation.
Should any inhabitants be inclined to volunteer their services into his majesty's force's, either naval or military, for limited service, they will be received; and if any British subject, being at Barataria, wishes to return to his native country, he will, on joining his majesty's service, receive a free pardon.
Given under my hand on board H. M. ship Hermes,
Pensacola, this 1st day of September, 1814.
W. H. Percy,
Captain and senior officer.
Letter from the hon. W. H, Percy, captain of his majesty's ship Hermes, and senior officer in the gulf of Mexico, to Nicholas Lockyer, esq. commander of H. M. sloop Sophia.
You are hereby required and directed, after having received on board an officer belonging to the first battalion of Royal colonial marines, to proceed in his majesty's sloop under your command, without a moment's loss of time, for Barataria.
On your arrival at that place, you will communicate with the chief persons there — you will urge them to throw themselves under the protection of Great Britain — and should you find them inclined to pursue such a step, you will hold out to them that their property shall be secured to them, that they shall be considered British subjects, and at the conclusion of the war, lands within his majesty's colonies in America, will be allotted to them in return for these concessions. You will insist on an immediate cessation of hostilities against Spain, and in case they should have any Spanish property not disposed of, that it he restored, and that they put their naval force into the hands of the senior officer here, until the commander-in-chief's pleasure is known. In the event of their not being inclined to act offensively against the United States, you will do all in your power to persuade them to a strict neutrality, and still endeavour to put a stop to their hostilities against Spain. Should you succeed completely in the object for which you are sent, you will concert such measures for the annoyance of the enemy as you judge best from circumstances; — having an eye to the junction of their small armed vessels with me for the capture of Mobile, &c. You will at all events yourself join me with the utmost despatch at this post, with the accounts of your succees.
Given under my hand on board his majesty's ship Hermes, at Pensacola, this 30th day of August, 1814.
W. H. Percy,
Letter from Mr. Laffite to Captain Lockyer.
Barataria, 4th September, 1814.
The confusion which prevailed in our camp yesterday and this morning, and of which you have a complete knowledge, has prevented me from answering in a precise manner to the object of your mission; nor even at this moment can I give you all the satisfaction that you desire; however, if you could grant me a fortnight, I would be entirely at your disposal at the end of that time — this delay is indispensable to send away the three persons who have alone occasioned all the disturbance — the two who were the most troublesome are to leave this place in eight days, and the other is to go to town — the remainder of the time is necessary to enable me to put my affairs in order — you may communicate with me, in sending a boat to the eastern point of the pass, where I will be found. You have inspired me with more confidence than the admiral, your superior officer, could have done himself; with you alone I wish to deal, and from you also I will claim, in due time, the reward of the services which I may render to you.
Be so good, sir, as to favour me with an answer, and believe me yours, &c.
Letter from Mr. Laffite to Mr. Blanque.
Barataria, 4th September, 1814.
Though proscribed by my adoptive country, I will never let slip any occasion of serving her, or of proving that she has never ceased to be dear to me. Of this you will here see a convincing proof. Yesterday, the 3d of September, there appeared here, under a flag of truce, a boat coming from an English brig, at anchor about two leagues from the pass. Mr. Nicholas Lockyer, a British officer of high rank, delivered me the following papers, two directed to me, a proclamation, and the admiral's instructions to that officer, all herewith enclosed. You will see from their contents the advantages I might have derived from that kind of association. I may have evaded the payment of duties to the custom house; but I have never ceased to be a good citizen; and all the offence I have committed, I was forced to by certain vices in our laws. In short, sir, I make you the depository of the secret on which perhaps depends the tranquillity of our country; please to make such use of it as your judgment may direct. I might expatiate on this proof of patriotism, but I let the fact speak for itself. I presume, however, to hope that such proceedings may obtain amelioration of the situation of my unhappy brother, with which view I recommend him particularly to your influence. It is in the bosom of a just man, of a true American, endowed with all other qualities that are honoured in society, that I think I am depositing the interests of our common country, and what particularly concerns myself.
Our enemies have endeavoured to work on me by a motive which few men would have resisted. They represented to me a brother in irons, a brother who is to me very dear! whose deliverer I might become, and I declined the proposal. Well persuaded of his innocence, I am free from apprehension as to the issue of a trial;
but he is sick and not in a place where he can receive the assistance his state requires. I recommend him to you, in the name of humanity.
As to the flag of truce, I have done with regard to it every thing that prudence suggested to me at the time. I have asked fifteen days to determine, assigning such plausible pretexts, that I hope the term will be granted. I am waiting for the British officer's answer, and for yours to this. Be so good as to assist me with your judicious counsel in so weighty an affair.
I have the honour to salute you,
Letter from Mr. Laffite to Mr. Blanque.
Grande Terre, 7th September, 1814.
You will always find me eager to evince my devotedness to the good of the country, of which I endeavoured to give some proof in my letter of the 4th, which I make no doubt you received. Amongst other papers that have fallen into my hands, I send you a scrap which appears to me of sufficient importance to merit your attention. [Appendix II above]
Since the departure of the officer who came with the flag of truce, his ship, with two other ships of war have remained on the coast, within sight. Doubtless this point is considered as important. We have hitherto kept on a respectable defensive; if, however, the British attach to the possession of this place, the importance they give us room to suspect they do, they may employ means above our strength. I know not whether, in that case, proposals of intelligence with government would be out of season. It is always from my high opinion of your enlightened mind, that I request you to advise me in this affair.
I have the honour to salute you,
Letter from Mr. Laffite to hit excellency W. C. C. Claiborne.
In the firm persuasion that the choice made of you to fill the office of first magistrate of this state, was dictated by the esteem of your fellow-citizens, and was conferred on merit, I confidently address you on an affair on which may depend the safety of this country.
I offer to you to restore to this state several citizens, who perhaps in your eyes have lost that sacred title. I offer you them, however, such as you could wish to find them, ready to exert their utmost efforts in defence of the country. This point of Louisiana, which I occupy, is of great importance in the psis.ccc I tenvvv der my services to defend it; and the only reward I ask. is that a stop be put to the proscription agadzdvinst me and my adherents, by an act of oblivion for all that has been done hitherto. I am the stray sheep, wishing to return to the shecpfold. If you were thoroughly acquainted with the nature of my offences, I should appear to you much less guilty, and still worthy to discharge the duties of a good citizen. I have never sailed under any flag but that of the republic of Carthagena, and my vessels are perfectly regular in that respect. If I could have brought my lawful prizes into the ports of this state, I should not have employed the illicit means that have caused me to be proscribed. I decline saying more on the subject, until I have the honour of your excellency's answer, which I am persuaded can be dictated only by wisdom. Should your answer not be favourable to my ardent desires, I declare to you that I will instantly leave the country, to avoid the imputation of having co-operated towards an invasion on this point, which cannot fail to take place, and to rest secure in the acquittal of my own conscience.
I have the honour to be
Your excellency’s &c.
Letter from Mr. Laffite, the elder, to Mr. Blanque,
Grande Terre, 1Oth September, 1814
On my arrival here, I was informed of all the occurrences that have taken place; I think I may justly commend my breather's conduct under such difficult circumstances. I am persuaded he could not have made a better choice, than in making you the depositary of the papers that were sent to us, and which may be of great importance to the state. Being fully determined to follow the plan that may reconcile us with the government, I herewith send you a letter directed to his excellency the governor, which I submit to your discretion, to deliver or not, as you may think proper. I have not yet been honoured with an answer from you. The moments are precious; pray send me an answer that may serve to direct my measures in the circumstances in which I find myself.
I have the honour to be, &c.
P. S. I join with this the letter for Mr. Claiborne, which I submit to your judgment. Should you think, from its contents, that it may be delivered or communicated to him, you will do either, as you think proper. I send it to you under cover; after having read it, I request you to seal it.
Circular letter to the governors of the several states.
“ War department, July 4th, 1814.
“ The late pacification in Europe, oflers to the enemy a large disposable force, both naval and military, and with it the means of giving to the war here a character of new and increased activity and extent — without knowing with certainty, that such will be its application, and still less that any particular point or points will become objects of attack, the president has deemed it advisable, as a measure of precaution, to strengthen ourselves on the line of the Atlantic, and (as the principal means of doing this will be found in the militia) to invite the executives of certain states, to organize and hold in readiness for immediate service, a corps of ninety-three thousand, five hundred men, under the laws of the 28th of February 1795, and the 18th of April 1814.
“ The enclosed detail, will show your excellency, what, under this requisition, will be the quota of your state.
“ As far as volunteer uniform corps can be formed, they will be preferred.
“ The expediency of regarding (as well in the designation of the militia, as of their places of rendezvous) the points, the importance or exposure of which, will be most likely to attract the views of the enemy, need not be suggested.
“ A report of the organization of your quota, when completed, and of the place or places of rendezvous will be acceptable.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Of the force thus required to be holden in readiness, the quota assigned to Georgia, was three regiments, and one battalion — viz. three hundred and fifty artillery, three thousand one hundred and fifty infantry, total, three thousand five hundred.. To Kentucky five regiments, and one battalion, viz. five thousand five hundred infantry. To Tennessee, two regiments, and one battalion — viz. two thousand five hundred infantry. To the Mississippi territory one battalion, viz. five hundred infantry; — and Louisiana, was required to furnish one regiment, viz. one thousand infantry.
The letter of the secretary at war reached governor Claiborne early in August, and by him was promptly attended to. On the 6th of March, he apportioned the quota assigned to Louisiana, between the first and second division of militia of the state.
Extract of a letter from major-general Jackson to governor Claiborne, dated head-quarters, 7th military district, fort Jackson 21st July, 1814.
This morning I was presented with a new British musket given to a friendly Indian by those at Apalachicola bay. Information has been received by this fellow tending to confirm the rumour of a considerable force having landed there with a large quantity of arms and other munitions of war, and with intentions to strike a decisive blow against the lower country. Mobile and Orleans are of such importance as to hold out strong inducements to them, at such a crisis: I must look to the constitutional authorities of the state of Louisiana for such support as will be effective in any emergency, and I trust this support will be afforded with promptitude whenever required.
Militia general orders, head-quarters,
New Orleans, August 6th, 1814.
In a letter from the honourable the secretary at war, under date of the 4th ultimo, the governor of Louisiana has received the orders of the president of the United States, to organize and hold in readiness for immediate service, a corps of a thousand militia infantry, being the quota assigned to this state, of a requisition for ninety-three thousand five hundred men, made on the executives of the several states, under the laws of the 28th February 1795, and 18th of April 1814, the governor and commander-in-chief in consequence directs, that one complete regiment, a thousand strong, to be composed of two battalions 1st and 2nd be organized and equipped for service, with the least possible delay. The first division of militia will furnish four full companies, each company to consist of one captain, one first lieutenant, two second lieutenant, four serjeants, four corporals, one drummer, one fifer, and ninety privates — the whole to be apportioned among the several brigades or regiments attached to the first division by the major-general commanding the same, and under his orders to be organized on or before the 4th of September next, and due returns made to the adjutant-general.
The second division of militia will furnish five full companies — each company to consist as aforesaid of one captain, one first lieutenant, two second lieutenants, four serjeants, four corporals, one drummer, one fifer, and ninety privates — the whole to be apportioned among the several brigades or regiments attached to the second division by the major-general commanding the same; and under his orders to be completely organized on or before the 15th September next, and due returns made of the same.
In all cases volunteer uniform companies of the strength required will be preferred, and a tender of service from all such promptly accepted in assigning the quota of the first and second division. The commander-in-chief, as was his duty, has taken into view the exposure of particular points, and the amount and description of population; like considerations will influence the major-generals in making apportionment among the several brigades and regiments. The returns to the adjutant-general will give the names of the officers, non-commissioned officers and privates, and particularly state the number and condition of the arms, in order that provision may be made for the supply of deficiencies. Each noncommissioned officer and private to furnish himself with a knapsack and blanket. The colonel-commandant of the regiment, and the medical staff will be named by the commander-in-chief; the major of the first battalion to be selected by the major-general of the second division; the major of the second battalion by the major-general of the first division, and the paymaster, adjutant, and quartermaster of the regiment by the colonel-commandant.
The corps thus to be organized and kept in readiness for active duty, will on the further commands of the president, or on the requisition of any officer acting under his authority, be ordered into the service of the United States, for a term not exceeding six months after their arrival at the point of rendezvous unless sooner discharged. The point of rendezvous for the detachment drawn from the first division, will be the city of New Orleans, and from the detachment drawn from the second division, the town of Baton Rouge.
“ The late pacification in Europe (says the secretary at war) offers to the enemy a large disposable force, both naval and military, and with it the means of giving to the war here a character of new and increased activity and extent
“ Without knowing with certainty, that such will be its application, and still less than any particular point or points, will become objects of attack, the president has deemed advisable, as a measure of precaution, to strengthen ourselves on the line of the Atlantic.” To these just reflections, the commander-in-chief will only add his firm reliance, that Louisiana will cheerfully participate with the sister states in whatever toils or dangers, the safety of our common country shall advise.
The desire manifested by the United States to sheathe the sword, on terms alike honourable to both parties, may indeed he met with a correspondent disposition. It is not easy to believe, that a nation should be so wholly regardless of duty to herself, as always to reject the claims of justice — but let us not be so far deluded with a hope of peace, as to leave our country uncovered and unprotected. If the latest reports from Europe are to be accredited, the enemy had determined on the most vigorous prosecution of the war — it is added, that this section of the union was to be attacked with design “ of wresting Louisiana from the hands of the United States and restoring it to Spain.”
A project so chimerical illy comports with that character for wisdom, to which the English government aspires, nor is it believed to be seriously contemplated. That the bare rumour, however, of such a design should awaken some anxiety, is cause of no surprise. But if there be individuals so much deceived, as to suppose its accomplishment possible, they are cautioned against being instrumental in deceiving others. The principles of the American government, no less than the interest and honour of the American people forbid the relinquishment of one tenth of the American territory. Whilst the western rivers flow, no foreign power can hold or detach Louisiana from the United States. She may indeed be temporarily exposed to an invading foe, but until by some convulsion of nature that numerous, gallant, and hardy race of men, inhabiting the vast tract of country watered by the tributary streams of the Mississippi, shall become extinct, the political destiny of Louisiana is placed beyond the possibility of change. Her connexion, interest and government must remain American. We however do not solely rely for security on our northern and western brethren. We shall not be wanting in duty to ourselves. The commander-in-chief therefore avails himself of this occasion, to invite the officers thoughout the state, and particularly colonels of regiments, and commandants of separate corps, to be faithful and diligent in the discharge of their respective duties. He orders the several regimental, battalion and company musters, as prescribed by law to be regularly holden, and every effort made to introduce order and discipline. If the war continues, we cannot hope for exemption from its calamities.
In case of invasion, the whole militia will be ordered to front the enemy — if our homes and fire-sides are menaced, union, zeal, and mutual confidence should warm every heart and strengthen every arm.
By order of his excellency William C. C. Claiborne, governor and commander-in-chief.
Extract of a letter from major-general Jackson to governor Claiborne, dated fort Jackson, August 15th, 1815.
Information this moment received by express from Alabama Heights, bringing me a letter from Pensacola, added to the intelligence received by captain Gordon, who was the bearer of a letter from me to the governor of Pensacola, makes it necessary, that all the forces allotted for the 7th military district, should be held in a state of preparation to march to any point required at a moment's warning.
Militia general orders, head-quarters,
New Orleans, September 5th, 1814.
Major-general Jackson acting under the authority of the president, having demanded the immediate service in the field of the whole corps of Louisiana militia, directed to be holden in readiness for service, under the general orders of the 6th ult. the governor and commander-in-chief directs that the officers, noncommissioned officers and privates, drawn from the first, second, third, fourth, and fifth regiments under the orders aforesaid, rendezvous in New Orleans, on Saturday the 10th instant, at 10 o'clock, A. M. in the enclosure in front of the barracks, where, being organized into companies under the orders of major-general Villeré, in manner heretofore directed, they will be inspected by major Hughes, inspector-general of the seventh military district, and mustered into the service of the United States, and quartered in or near New Orleans, until further orders.
Every individual will be punctual in his attendance: those, if if any there be, who may be prevented by severe indisposition, will send well attested certificates of the fact, or they will be reported as delinquents. Those who may claim exemption on the ground of bodily infirmity (and some few have exhibited such claims) will attend at the rendezvous, where they will be examined by a surgeon, upon whose report they will be rejected or passed by the inspector as justice shall dictate. Privates, wishing to serve by substitutes, will attend with the same, being previously instructed that no substitute will be received but an able-bodied man.
The time of rendezvous for detachments drawn from the more distant counties, will be fixed in after orders.
W. C. C. Claiborne.
AFTER GENERAL ORDERS.
H. Q. New Orleans, September 5th, 1814.
Major-general Jackson, acting under the authority of the president, having required the service in the field of the whole corps of Louisiana militia, holden in readiness for active service under the orders of the 6th ult. the governor and commander-inchief directs that the detachment drawn from the second division of militia, rendezvous at the post of Baton Rouge, on or before the 1st day of October next, where after being organized into companies, under the order of major-general Thomas,'in manner as heretofore directed, they will be inspected and mustered into the service of the United States.
The commander-in-chief, confiding in the patriotism of the several corps attached to the second division, assures himself that at this moment of peril, they will deserve well of their country. Louisiana is openly menaced, and it is believed that the force destined to invade her is at this time assembled at Apalachicola and Pensacola. Major-general Jackson, commanding the seventh military district, who has often led the western warriors to victory, invites me to lose no time in preparing for the defence of the state. This gallant commander is now at or near Mobile watching the movements of the enemy, and making the necessary preparations to cover and defend this section of the union. He will in due time receive re-enforcements from the other states on the Mississippi: he calculates also, on the zealous support of the Louisianians, and must not be disappointed. The, time has come when every man must do his duty, when no faithful American will be found absent from his post.
By order of his excellency W. C. C. Claiborne.
By another general order the detachment drawn from the sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth regiments, are ordered to rendezvous at the Magasin barracks opposite New Orleans, on Saturday the 4th instant.
Militia general orders, head-quarters,
New Orleans, September 8th, 1814.
The governor and commander-in-chief directs that the several companies of militia, within the city and suburbs of New Orleans, muster for inspection and exercise twice, and those in the interior counties of the state, once in each and every week, at such times and places as the captains or officers commanding companies shall designate. He recommends also to all fathers of families and others who, by their stations or age, are exempted from militia service, to afford at this eventful crisis a laudable example; he invites them to the formation of military associations; to choose their officers; to procure arms, and to assemble occasionally for military exercise.
The commander-in-chief would be sorry unnecessarily to draw his fellow citizens from their private pursuits and subject them to useless fatigues, but in his judgment their safety demands that they be trained to the use of arms, and holden in readiness to turn out at a moment's warning in defence of their families and homes; he does not wish to excite alarm, and trusts none will exist; but it is his duty to declare that the state is menaced with dangers which require all our union, zeal, and activity to avert. A hope is still cherished that the pending negociation between the United States and Great Britain may eventuate in a peace honourable to both parties; but there is too much reason to apprehend that the enemy feeling power may forget right. Indeed from the information before us, we shall act wisely in preparing for the worst. At this moment a fleet of the enemy is hovering on our coast, and he is assembling a force at Apalachicola, Pensacola, and elsewhere, avowedly for the invasion of Louisiana. We must be prepared to meet him; to dispute every inch of ground; harass him on his march; make a stand at every favourable position, and finally to triumph or lose with our country, our lives. Every individual, therefore, attached to the militia will be in constant readiness for active service — officers of every grade at all times be prepared to repair to their posts, and assume the command which may be assigned them — non-commissioned officers and privates will put their arms, whether muskets, rifles, or shot-guns in the best possible condition, furnish themselves with six flints each, as much powder and ball as can conveniently be carried, and pack in their knapsacks one blanket, one shirt, and one pair of shoes, being the necessary clothing on a march. The greatest vigilance will be observed, and every precaution taken to guard against surprise. Captains and subalterns will keep their field officers advised of every occurrence which interests the public safety, and colonels or officers commanding regiments will communicate the same to the generals of their respective brigades and division, and the general officers to the commander-in-chief. Strong patroles will be ordered on every night, particularly within the city and suburbs of New Orleans and the adjacent counties. The strictest discipline will be maintained among the slaves, and every person of suspicious conduct or character, will be arrested and carried before a judge, or justice of the peace, for examination. If the enemy should enter the state, the several colonels of militia nearest the point of attack, will immediately order into the field their respective regiments, and (after detailing a suitable guard for the protection of the women and children, and the maintenance of a proper police on the plantations) will advance without waiting for further orders to the scene of danger. Of the skill and courage of the regular troops of the United States in our vicinity, we are fully assured; we will unite our efforts with theirs against the common enemy, and if called to act with our gallant countrymen of the western states, vie with them also in deeds of valour.
The commander-in-chief persuades himself that no efforts which have or may be made to divide us, will prove successful. The intrigues, the means of corruption by which in other countries our enemy has so much profited, will doubtless be attempted here. But his character is well understood, and it is hoped, that his arts will not avail him. In defence of our homes and families there surely will be but one opinion — one sentiment. The American citizen, on contrasting his situation with that of the citizen or subject of any other country on earth, will see abundant cause to be content with his destiny. He must be aware how little he can gain, and how much he must lose by a revolution, or change of government.
If there be a citizen who believes that his rights and property would be respected by an invading foe, the weakness of his head should excite pity. If there be an individual who supposes the kind of force with which we are menaced could be restrained from acts of violence, he knows little of the character of those allies of Great Britain, who committed the massacre at fort Mins.
In these evil days, small indeed is the portion of affliction which has hitherto befallen Louisiana: when a hostile army breaks into the territory of a nation, its course is marked with scenes of desolation, which centuries of industry cannot repair. With what union, with what zeal, should all our energies be exerted to defend our country against like misfortunes!
Wm. C. C. Claiborne.
Head-quarters, Pensacola, August 26, 1814.
Order of the day for the first colonial battalion of the royal corps of marines.
You are called upon to discharge a duty of the utmost danger, of the utmost peril. You will have to perform long and tedious marches through wildernesses, swamps and water-courses; your enemy from long habit inured to the climate, will have great advantages over you. But remember the twenty-one years of toil and glory of your country, and resolve to follow the example of your glorious companions, who have fought and spilt their blood in her service. Be equally faithful and strict in your moral discipline, and this, the last and most perfidious of your enemies, will not long maintain himself before you. A cause so sacred as that which has led you to draw your swords in Europe, will make you unsheath them in America, and I trust you will use them with equal credit and advantage. In Europe, your arms were not employed in defence of your country only, but of all those who groaned in the chains of oppression, and in America they are to have the same direction. The people whom you are now to aid and assist have suffered robberies and murders committed on them by the Americans.
The noble Spanish nation has grieved to see her territories insulted; having been robbed and despoiled of a portion of them while she was overwhelmed with distress and held down by the chains which a tyrant had imposed on her gloriously struggling for the greatest of all possible blessings (true liberty.) The treacherous Americans, who call themselves free, have attacked her, like assassins, while she was fallen. But the day of retribution is fast approaching. These atrocities will excite horror in the heart of a British soldier, they will stimulate you to avenge them, and you will avenge them like British soldiers. Valour, then, and humanity!
As to the Indians, you are to exhibit to them the most exact discipline, being a pattern to those children of nature. You will have to teach and instruct them; in doing which you will manifest the utmost patience, and you will correct them when they deserve it. But you will regard their affections and
antipathies, and never give them just cause of offence.
Sobriety, above all things, should be your greatest care — a single instance of drunkenness may he our ruin; and I declare to you, in the most solemn manner, that no consideration whatsoever shall induce me to forgive a drunkard. Apprised of this declaration, if any of you break my orders in this respect, he will consider himself as the just cause of his own chastisement. Sobriety is your first duty; I ask of you the observance of it among your brethren. Vigilance is our next duty. Nothing is so disgraceful to our army as surprise. — Nothing so destructive to our cause.
At a very numerous and respectable meeting of the citizens of New Orleans and its vicinity, assembled pursuant to public notice at Tremoulet's coffee-house, on the 15th day of September, 1814, to consider of the propriety of naming a committee to co-operate with the constituted authorities of the state and general government, in suggesting measures of defence, and calling out the force of the country in the present emergency,
Edward Livingston, Esq. was called to the chair, and Richard Relf, Esq. appointed secretary of the meeting.
The chairman opened the meeting by a speech analogous to the occasion, in which he showed the propriety and necessity of the meeting, and the good effects that would probably result from an expression of public opinion in the present posture of our affairs, and took occasion, from the English assertion of disaffection in this state, to show, that we owed it to ourselves to disavow such unfounded and calumnious insinuations, and by a prompt and cheerful offer of support, to show to the rest of the United States that we are not unworthy of a place among them. After a strong and eloquent invitation to union, he proposed the following resolutions, which were unanimously adopted:
Resolved, That on all important national questions, it is proper, and in urgent emergencies it is necessary, for the citizens of a free government to aid their magistrates and officers by a proffer of their support in the performance of their functions.
Resolved, That in this state such an expression of public opinion is peculiarly proper, because the enemy has dared to allege that we are disaffected to our government, and ready to assist him in his attempts on our independence, an allegation which we declare to be false and insidious, tending to create doubts of our fidelity to the union of which we are a member, and which we repel with the indignation they are calculated to inspire.
Resolved, That an union with the other states is necessary to the prosperity of this, and that while we rely upon them for assistance and protection, we will not be wanting in every exertion proportionate to our strength, in order to maintain internal tranquillity, repel invasion, and preserve to the United States this important accession to its commerce and security.
Resolved, As the sense of this assembly, that the good people of this state are attached to the government of the United States, and that they will repel with indignation every attempt to create disaffection and weaken the force of the country, by exciting dissentions and jealousies at a moment when union is most necessary.
Resolved, That we consider the present as a crisis serious but not alarming — that our country is capable of defence — that we do not despair of the republic, and that we will at the risk of outlives and fortunes defend it.
Resolved, That a committee of nine members be appointed to co-operate with the constituted civil and military authorities, in suggesting means of defence, and calling forth the energies of the country to repel invasion and preserve domestic tranquillity, and that the said committee consist of the following persons: Edward Livingston, Pierre Foucher, Dussuau de la Croix, Benjamin Morgan, George M. Ogden, Dominique Bouligny, J. Noel Destrehan, John Blanque, Augustin Macarty.
Address from the committee of public defence,
to their fellow citizens.
Named by a numerous assembly of the citizens of New Orleans, to aid the constituted authorities in devising the most certain means of guarding against the dangers which threatened you, our first duty is to apprize you of the extent of those dangers — your open enemy is preparing to attack you from without, and by means of his vile agents dispersed through the country, endeavours to excite to insurrection a more cruel and dangerous one in the midst of you.
Fellow citizens! the most perfect union is necessary among all the individuals which compose our community; all have an equal interest in yielding a free and full obedience to their magistrates and officers, and in forwarding their views for the public good — all have not only their property, but their very existence at stake; you have, through your representatives in the convention, contracted the solemn obligation of becoming an integral part of the United States of America; by this measure you secured your own sovereignty and acquired the invaluable blessing of independence. God forbid that we should believe there are any among us disposed to fail in the sacred duties required by fidelity and honour. A just idea of the geographical situation of your country will convince you that your safety, and in a greater degree your prosperity, depends on your being irrevocably and faithfully attached to an union with the other states; but if there exist among you men base or mad enough to undervalue their duties and their true interest — let them tremble on considering the dreadful evils they will bring down upon themselves and upon us, if by their criminal indifference they favour the enterprises of the enemy against our beloved country.
Fellow citizens! the navigation of the Mississippi is as necessary to two millions of our western brethren, as the blood is to the pulsation of the heart — those brave men, closely attached to the union, will never suffer, whatever seducing offers maybe made to them — they will never suffer the state of Louisiana to be subject to a foreign power, and should the events of war enable the enemy to occupy it, they will make every sacrifice to recover a country so necessary to their existence. A war ruinous to you would be the consequence, the enemy, to whom you would have had the weakness to yield, would subject you to a military despotism, of all others the most dreadful; your estates, your slaves, your persons would be put in requisition, and you would be forced at the point of the bayonet to fight against those very men whom you have voluntarily chosen for fellow citizens and brethren. Beloved countrymen, listen to the men honoured by your confidence, and who will endeavour to merit it; listen to the voice of honour, of duty, and of nature! unite! form but one body, one soul, and defend to the last extremity your sovereignty, your property — defend your own lives, and the dearer existence of your wives and children.
At a meeting of the committee of public defence on the 21st September, 1814,
On motion, resolved, that a sabre, with a suitable inscription and proper emblems, be presented to major W. Lawrence, as a testimonial of the sense which is entertained of his skill and gal-, lantry in the defence of fovt Bowyer, and in the repulse of the enemy's squadron and forces before that place.
Ordered, that the chairman communicate a copy of this resolution to major Lawrence, with a request that he will convey to the brave officers and men under his command, the expression of gratitude which is felt for the important service they have rendered to this state, as well as to the United States.
Head-quarters, seventh military district,
Mobile, September 21st, 1814.
The base, the perfidious Britons have attempted to invade your country — they had the temerity to attack fort Bowyer with their incongruous horde of Indians and negro assassins — they seemed to have forgotten that this fort was defended by freemen — they were not long indulged in their error — the gallant Lawrence, with his little spartan band, has given them a lecture that will last for ages; he has taught them what men can do when fighting for their liberty, when contending against slaves. He has convinced sir W. H. Percy that his companions in arms are not to be conquered by proclamations; that the strongest British bark is not invulnerable to the force of American artillery, directed by the steady nervous arm of a freeman.
Louisianians! — The proud Briton, the natural and sworn enemies of all Frenchmen, has called upon you, by proclamation, to aid him in his tyranny, and to prostrate the holy temple of our liberty. Can Louisianians, can Frenchmen, can Americans, ever stoop to be the slaves or allies of Britain.
The proud, vain-glorious boaster colonel Nicholls, when he addressed you, Louisianians and Kentuckians, had forgotten that you were the votaries of freedom, or he would never have pledged the honour of a British officer for the faithful performance of his promise, to lure you from your fidelity to the government of your choice. I ask you, Louisianians, can we place any confidence in he honour of men who have courted an alliance with pirates and robbers? Have not these noble Britons, these honourable men, colonel Nicholls and the honourable captain W. H. Percy, the true representatives of their royal master, done this? Have they not made offers to the pirates of Barataria to join them, and their, holy cause? And have they not dared to insult you by calling on you to associate, as brethren with them, and this hellish banditti.
Louisianians! — The government of your choice are engaged in a just and honourable contest for the security of your individual and her national rights — on you, a part of America, the only country on earth where every man enjoys freedom, where its blessings are alike extended to the poor and the rich, calls to protect these rights from the invading usurpation of Britain; and she calls not in vain. I well know that every man whose soul beats high at the proud title of freeman; that every Louisianian, either by birth or adoption, will promptly obey the voice of his country; will rally round the eagle of Columbia, secure it from the pending danger, or nobly die in the last ditch in its defence.
The individual who refuses to defend his rights, when called upon by his government, deserves to be a slave, and must be punished as an enemy to his country, and a friend to her foe.
The undersigned has been intrusted with the defence of your country — on you he relies to aid him in this important duty; in this reliance he hopes not to be mistaken. He trusts in the justice of his cause and the patriotism of his countrymen — confident that any future attempt to invade our soil will be repelled as the last, he calls not upon either pirates or robbers to join him in the glorious cause.
Your governor has been fully authorized by me to organize any volunteer company, battalion, or regiment which may proffer its services under this call, and is informed of their probable destination.
Head-quarters, 7th military district, Mobile, September 21, 1814.
To the free coloured inhabitants of Louisiana.
Through a mistaken policy you have heretofore been deprived of a participation in the glorious struggle for national rights in which our country is engaged. This no longer shall exist.
As sons of freedom, you are now called upon to defend outmost inestimable blessing. As Americans, your country looks with confidence to her adopted children, for a valorous support, as a faithful return for the advantages enjoyed under her mild and equitable government. As fathers, husbands, and brothers, you are summoned to rally round the standard of the eagle, to defend all which is dear in existence.
Your country, although calling for your exertions, does not wish you to engage in her cause, without amply remunerating you for the services rendered. Your intelligent minds are not to be led away by false representations. — Your love of honour would cause you to despise the man who should attempt to deceive you. In the sincerity of a soldier, and the language of truth I address you.
To every noble-hearted, generous freeman of colour, volunteering to serve during the present contest with Great Britain, and no longer, there will be paid the same bounty in money and lands, now received by the White soldiers of the United States, viz. one hundred and twenty-four dollars in money, and one hundred and sixty acres of land. The non-commissioned officers and privates will also be entitled to the same monthly pay and daily rations, and clothes furnished to any American soldier.
On enrolling yourselves in companies, the major-general commanding will select officers for your government, from your white fellow citizens. Your non-commissioned officers will be appointed from among yourselves.
Due regard will be paid to the feelings of freemen and soldiers. You will not, by being associated with white men in the same corps, be exposed to improper comparisons or unjust sarcasm. As a distinct, independent battalion or regiment, pursuing the path of glory, you will, undivided, receive the applause and gratitude of your countrymen.
To assure you of the sincerity of my intentions and my anxiety to engage your invaluable services to our country, I have communicated my wishes to the governor of Louisiana, who is fully informed as to the manner of enrolment, and will give you every nccessary information on the subject of this address.
To commodore Daniel T. Patterson, New Orleans.
Pensacola, 5th December, 1814.
it a duty to apprize you of a very large force of the enemy off this port, and it is generally understood New Orleans is the object of attack. It amounts at present to about eighty vessels, and more than double that number are momentarily looked for, to form a junction, when an immediate commencement of their operations will take place. I am not able to learn, how, when, or where the attack will be made; but I heard that they have vessels of all descriptions, and a large body of troops. Admiral Cochrane commands, and his ship, the Tonnant, lies at this moment just outside the bar; they certainly appear to have swept the West Indies of troops, and probably no means will be left untried to obtain their object. — The admiral arrived only yesterday noon.
I am yours &c.
Copy of a letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary of the navy, dated Ncw Orleans, 17th March, 1815.
Inclosed I have the honour to transmit for your information a copy of a letter from lieutenant Thomas Ap Catesby Jones, giving a detailed account of the action between the gun-vessels-under his command, and a flotilla of the enemy’s lanches and barges, on the 14th December, 1814, which, after a most gallant resistance, terminated, as stated in my letter of the 17th December, in the capture of our squadron.
The courage and skill which was displayed in the defence of the gun-vessels and tender, for such a length of time, against such an overwhelming force as they had to contend with, reflects additional splendour on our naval glory, and will, I trust, diminish the regret occasioned by their loss.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Daniel T. Patterson.
New Orleans, 12th March, 1815.
Having sufficiently recovered my strength, I do myself the honour of reporting to you the particulars of the capture of the division of United States' gun-boats late under my command.
On the 12th-December, 1814, the enemy's fleet off Ship island increased to such a force as to render it no longer safe or prudent for me to continue on that part of the lakes with the small force which I commanded. I therefore determined to gain a station near the Malhereux islands as soon as possible, which situation would better enable me to oppose a further penetration of the enemy up the lakes, and at the same time afford me an opportunity of retreating to the Petite Coquilles if necessary.
At 10, A. M. on the 13th I discovered a large flotilla of barges had left the fleet, (shaping their course towards the Pass Christian) which I supposed to be a disembarkation of troops intended to land at that place. About 2, P. M. the enemy's flotilla having gained the Pass Christian, and continuing their course to the westward, convinced me that an attack on the gun-boats was designed. At this time the water in the lakes was uncommonly low, owing to the westerly wind which had prevailed for a number of days previous, and which still continued from the same quarter. Nos. 156, 162 and 163, although in the best channel, were in 12 or 18 inches less water than their draught. Every effort was made to get them afloat by throwing overboard all articles of weight that could be dispensed with. At 3 30, the flood-tide had commenced; got under weigh, making the best of my way towards the Petite Coquilles. At 3 45, the enemy despatched three boats to cut out the schooner Seahorse, which had been sent into the bay St. Louis that morning to assist in the removal of the public stores, which I had previously ordered. There finding a removal impracticable, I ordered preparations to be made for their destruction, least they should fall into the enemy's hands. A few discharges of grape-shot from the Seahorse compelled the three boats, which had attacked her, to retire out of reach of her gun, until they were joined by four others, when the attack was recommenced by the seven boats. Mr. Johnson having chosen an advantageous position near the two six-pounders mounted on the bank, maintained a sharp action for near 30 minutes, when the enemy hauled off, having one boat apparently much injured, and with the loss of several men killed and wounded. At 7 30, an explosion at the bay, and soon after a large fire, induced me to believe the Seahorse was blown up and the public storehouse set on fire, which has proved to be the fact.
About 1 A. M. on the 14th, the wind having entirely died away, and our vessels become unmanageable, came to anchor in the west end of Malheureux island's passage. At daylight next morning, still a perfect calm, the enemy's flotilla was about nine miles from us at anchor, but soon got in motion and rapidly advanced on us. The want of wind, and the strong ebb-tide which was setting through the pass, left me but one alternative; which was, to put myself in the most advantageous position, to give the enemy as warm a reception as possible. The commanders were all called on board and made acquainted with my intentions, and the position which each vessel was to take, the whole to form a close line abreast across the channel, anchored by the stern with springs on the cable, &c. &c. Thus we remained anxiously awaiting an attack from the advancing foe, whose force I now clearly distinguished to be composed of forty-two heavy lanches and gun-barges, with three light gigs, manned with upwards of one thousand men and officers. About 9 30, the Alligator (tender) which was to the southward and eastward, and endeavouring to join the division, was captured by several of the enemy's barges, when the whole flotilla came to, with their grampncls a little out of reach of our shot, apparently making arrangements for the attack — At 10 30, the enemy weighed, forming a line abreast in open order,and steering direct for our line, which was unfortunately in some degree broken by the force of the current, driving Nos. 156 and 163 about one hundred yards in advance. As soon as the enemy came within reach of our shot, a deliberate fire from our long guns was opened upon him, but without much effect, the objects being of so small a size. At 10 minutes before 11, the enemy opened a fire from the whole of his line, when the action became general and destructive on both sides. About 11 49, the advance boats of the enemy, three in number, attempted to board No. !56, but were repulsed with the loss of nearly every officer killed or wounded, and two boats sunk. — A second attempt to board was then made by four other boats, which shared almost a similar fate. At this moment I received a severe wound in my left shoulder, which compelled me to quit the deck, leaving it in charge of Mr. George Parker, master's-mate, who gallantly defended the vessel until he was severely wounded, when the enemy, by his superior number, succeeded in gaining possession of the deck about 10 minutes past 12 o'clock. The enemy immediately turned the guns of his prize on the other gun-boats, and fired several shot previous to striking the American colours. The action continued .with unabating severity until 40 minutes past 12 o'clock, when it terminated with the surrender of No. 23, all the other vessels having previously fallen into the hands of the enemy.
In this unequal contest our loss in killed and wounded has been trifling, compared to that of the enemy.
Enclosed you will receive a list of the killed and wounded, and a correct statement of the force which I had the honour to command at the commencement of the action, together with an estimate of the force I had to contend against, as acknowledged by the enemy, which will enable you to decide how far the honour of our country's flag has been supported in this conflict.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Thomas Ap Catesby Jones.
Statement of the effective forces of a division of the United States' gun-boats under the command of lieutenant-commanding Thomas Afi Catesby Jones, at the commencement of the action, with a flotilla of English boats, on the 14th December, 1814.
Gun-boat No. 5, 5 guns, 36 men, sailing-master John D. Ferris; gun-boat 23, 5 guns, 39 men, lieutenant Isaac M‘Keeve
gun-boat No. 156, 5 guns, 41 men, lieutenant-commandant Thomas A. C. Jones; gun-boat 162, 5 guns, 35 men, lieutenant Robert Spedden; gun-boat 163, 3 guns, 31 men, sailing-master George Ulrick — Total, 23 guns, 182 men.
N. B. The schooner Seahorse, had one six-pounder, and 14 men, sailing-master William Johnson, commander; none killed or wounded.
The sloop Alligator (tender) had one four-pounder and 8 men, sailing-master Richard S. Shepperd, commander.
Thomas Ap Catesby Jones.
The following is a correct statement of the British forces which were engaged in the cafiture of the late United States' gun-boats, Nos. 23, 156, 5, 162 and 163, near the Malhereux islands, lake Borgne, 14th December, 1814.
Forty lanches and barges, mounting one carronade, each ot 12, 18, and 24 calibre.
One lanch mounting one long brass twelve-pounder.
One lanch mounting one long brass nine-pounder.
Three gigs, with small arms only.
Total number of boats 45
Total number of cannon 43
The above flotilla was manned with one thousand two hundred men and officers, commanded hy captain Lockyer, who received three severe wounds in the action. The enemy, as usual, will not acknowledge his loss on this occasion in boats or men; but from the nature of the action, and the observations made by our officers, while prisoners in their fleet, his loss in killed and wounded may be justly estimated to exceed three hundred, among whom are an unusual proportion of officers.
On Sunday, the 18th December, general Jackson reviewed the militia of the cily, the battalion commanded by major Plauche, and a part of the regiment of men of colour. Being drawn up on their respective parades, the following addresses were read to them by Mr. Livingston, one of his aids:
TO THE EMBODIED MILITIA.
Fellow citizens and soldiers!
The general commanding in chief would not do justice to the noble ardour that has animated you in the hour of danger, he would not do justice to his own feeling, if he suffered the example you have shown to pass without public notice. Inhabitants of an opulent and commercial town, you have, by a spontaneous effort, shaken off the habits which are created by wealth, and shown that you are resolved to deserve the blessings of fortune by bravely defending them. Long strangers to the perils of war, you have embodied yourselves to face them with the cool countenance of veterans — and with motives of disunion that might operate on weak minds, you have forgotten the difference of language and the prejudices of national pride, and united with a cordiality that does honour to your understandings as well as to your patriotism. Natives of the United States! They are the oppressors of your infant political existence, with whom you are to contend — they are the men your fathers conquered whom you are to oppose. Descendants of Frenchmen! natives of France! they are English, the hereditary, the eternal enemies of your ancient country, the invaders of that you have adopted, who are your foes. Spaniards! remember the conduct of your allies at St. Sebastians, and recently at Pensacola, and rejoice that you have an opportunity of avenging the brutal injuries inflicted by men who dishonour the human race.
Fellow citizens, of every description, remember for what and against whom you contend. For all that can render life desirable — for a country blessed with every gift of nature — for property, for life — for those dearer than either, your wives and children — and for liberty, without which, country, life, property, are no longer worth possessing; as even the embraces of wives and children become a repwach to the wretch who would deprive them by his cowardice of those invaluable blessings. You are to contend for all this against an enemy whose continued effort is to deprive you of the least of these blessings — who avows a war of vengeance and desolation, carried on and marked by cruelty, lust, and horrors unknown to civilized nations.
Citizens of Louisiana! the general commanding in chief, rejoices to see the spirit that animates you, not only for your honour but for your safety; for whatever had been your conduct or wishes, his duty would have led, and will now lead him to confound the citizen unmindful of his rights, with the enemy he ceases to oppose. Now, leading men who know their rights, who are determined to defend them, he salutes you, brave Louisianians, as brethren in arms, and has now a new motive to exert all his faculties which shall be strained to the utmost in your defence. Continue with the energy you have begun, and he promises you not only safety, but victory over the insolent enemy who insulted you by an affected doubt of your attachment to the constitution of your country.
TO THE BATTALION OF UNIFORM COMPANIES.
When I first looked at you on the day of my arrival, I was satisfied with your appearance, and every day's inspection since has confirmed the opinion I then formed. Your numbers have increased with the increase of danger, and your ardour has augmented since it was known that your post would be one of peril and honour. This is the true love of country! You have added to it an exact discipline, and a skill in evolutions rarely attained by veterans; the state of your corps does equal honour to the skill of the officers and the attention of the men. With such defenders our country has nothing to fear. Every thing I have said to the body of militia, applies equally to you — you have made the same sacrifices — you have the same country to defend, the same motive for exertion — but I should have been unjust had I not noticed, as it deserved, the excellence of your discipline and the martial appearance of your corps.
TO THE MEN OF COLOUR.
Soldiers — From the shores of Mobile I collected von to arms — I invited you to share in the perils and to divide the glory of your white countrymen. I expected much from you, for I was not uninformed of those qualities which must render you so for
tradable to an invading foe — I knew that you could endure hunger and thirst and all the hardships of war — I knew that you loved the land of your nativity, and that, like ourselves, you had to defend all that is most dear to man — but you surpass my hopes. I have found in you, united to those qualities, that noble enthusiasm which impels to great deeds.
Soldiers — The president of the United States shall be informed of your conduct on the present occasion, and the voice of the representatives of the American nation shall applaud your valour, as your general now praises your ardour. The enemy is near} his “ sails cover the lakes;” but the brave are united; and if he finds us contending among ourselves, it will be for the prize of valour and fame, its noblest reward.
Thomas L. Butler,
The following spirited order gives a sufficient account of the motives which induced general Jackson to resort to the measure of proclaiming martial law. At the same time that it served to convince the emissaries, whom the enemy might have sent among us, of the inutility of their mission, it convinced also the people of Louisiana, that the man who had come to take command of the forces, was decidedly determined to save the country, and to make use of all the means in his power to obtain that desirable end.
New Orleans, December 15, 1814.
To The Citizens Of New Orleans,
The major-general commanding, has, with astonishment and regret, learned that great consternation and alarm pervade your city. It is true the enemy is on our coast and threatens an invasion of our territory, but it is equally true, with union, energy, and the approbation of Heaven, we will beat him at every point his temerity may induce him to set foot upon our soil. The general, with still greater astonishment, has heard that British emissaries have been permitted to propagate seditious reports among you, that the threatened invasion is with a view of restoring the country to Spain, from a supposition that some of you would be willing to return to your ancient government. Believe not such incredible tales — your government is at peace with Spain — it is the vital enemy of your country, the common enemy of mankind, the highway robber of the world that threatens you, and has sent his hirelings amongst you with this false report, to put you off your guard, that you may fall an easy prey to him; — then look to your liberties, your property, the chastity of your wives and daughters — take a retrospect of the conduct of the British army at Hampton and other places, where it has entered our country, and every bosom which glows with patriotism and virtue, will be inspired with indignation, and pant for the arrival of the hour when we shall meet and revenge those outrages against the laws of civilization and humanity.
The general calls upon the inhabitants of the city to trace this unfounded report to its source, and bring the propagator to condign punishment. The rules and articles of war annex the punishment of death to any person holding secret correspondence with the enemy, creating false alarm, or supplying him with provision; and the general announces his unalterable determination rigidly to execute the martial law in all cases which may come within his province.
The safety of the district entrusted to the protection of the general, must and will be maintained with the best blood of the country; and he is confident all good citizens will be found at their posts, with their arms in their hands, determined to dispute every inch of ground with the enemy: that unanimity will pervade the country generally: but should the general be disappointed in this expectation, he will separate our enemies from our friends — those who are not for us are against us, and will be dealt with accordingly.
Thomas L. Butler,
To grant a delay in the cases therein mentioned.
Whereas the present crisis will oblige a great number of citizens to take up arms in defence of this state, and compel them to quit their homes, and thus leave their private affairs in a state of abandonment, which may expose them to great distress, if the legislature should not, by measures adapted to the circumstances, come to their relief,
Sec. 1. Be it enacted by the senate and house of representatives of the state of Louisiana in general assembly convened, That no protest on any note or bill of exchange, payable to order or bearer, or on any note, bill of exchange, or obligation for the payment of money, shall or can be legally made, until one hundred and twenty days after the promulgation of the present act.
Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That no property, either moveable or immoveable, belonging to successions or bankrupts, or any property seized by virtue of any execution issued by the courts of justice, or justices of the peace of this state, shall be sold within one hundred and twenty days after the promulgation of the present act; Provided however, that the delay aforesaid shall not prejudice the holders or proprietors of the said notes, bills, obligations, or judgments, from demanding the interests which they would or might have legally demanded, if the said delay did not exist.
Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That from and after the promulgation of this act, no civil suit or action shall be commenced or prosecuted before any court of record or other tribunal of this state, nor shall any execution issue or be proceeded upon; and all proceedings in civil suits or actions, now pending before any such court or tribunal, shall henceforth cease and be suspended during the time this act shall remain in force.
Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That no sale of lands or slaves which may be passed during the time this act remains in force, shall have any effect to the prejudice of the rights of the creditor or creditors, of the persons making such sale. Provided however, that such creditor or creditors who may have no existing lien on such property, shall, before the first day of June next, make known to the person possessing the same, the claim or demand he or they may have against the person who shall have sold the same.
Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That for the purpose of preserving the securities of creditors under the said suspicion of judicial proceedings, the several judges and justices of the peace of this state, having original jurisdiction, shall have the power of granting writs of sequestration, in case any debtor or debtors, during such suspension, shall remove or attempt to remove their personal estate and slaves, or either of them without the jurisdiction of the courts; which may be detained under sequestration on petition filed by the creditor, the allegations contained in which petition shall be supported by the oath of the petitioner, his agent or attorney, Provided however, that the debtor may replevy his estate so sequestered, on giving bond and security for the payment of any judgment against him, or any debt to be liquidated by judgment or otherwise by the debtor and creditor.
Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That this act, within the parish of Orleans, shall be considered as being legally promulgated, on the day it shall have been approved by the governor, and within the other parishes of this state, on the day of its promulgation, agreeably to the now existing laws. This act shall continue and be in force until the first day of May next and no longer.
Speaker of the house of representatives.
President of the Senate.
Approved, December 18, 1814.
William C. Claiborne.
Governor of the state of Louisiana.
Letter from commodore Patterson to the hon. Secretary at War.
U. S. ship Louisiana, December 28, 1814.
I have the honour to inform you that on the 23d instant, while at the bayou St. John, examining the batteries erecting there by the navy, under the superintendance of captain Henley of the Carolina, I learnt that information had been received by general Jackson that the enemy had penetrated through bayou Bienvenu with a large force, and had effected a landing at general Villeré’s plantation on the banks of the Mississippi, which upon application to the general proved to be true. The alarm was immediately given in town, and the troops put in motion; I repaired on board the United States’ schooner Carolina, with captain Henley, and after ordering the Louisiana, commanded by lieutenant-commandant C. B. Thompson, to follow me, at 4 P. M. weighed, and it being calm, dropped down with the current; at about half past six I received a request from general Jackson, through Mr. Edward Livingston, his aid-de-camp, to anchor abreast of the enemy’s camp, which he pointed out, and open afire upon them. It continuing calm, got out sweeps, and a few minutes after, having been frequently hailed by the enemy's sentinels, anchored, veered out a long scope of cable, sheered close in shore abreast of their camp, and commenced a heavy (and as I havg since learned most destructive) fire from our starboard battery and small arms, which was returned most spiritedly by the enemy with congreve rockets and musketry from their whole force, when after about forty minutes of most incessant fire, the enemy was silenced; the fire from our battery was continued till nine o'clock upon the enemy’s flank while engaged in the field with our army, at which hour ceased firing, supposing from the distance of the enemy’s fire (for it was too dark to see any thing on shore) that they had retreated beyond the range of our guns — weighed and swept across the river, in hopes of a breeze the next morning to enable me to renew the attack upon the enemy, should they be returned to their encampment; but was disappointed on the 24th by a light air from north-northwest, which towards the evening, hauled toward northwest, and blew a heavy gale, compelling me to remain during the 24th, 25th, and 26th at anchor in a position abreast of the enemy, although every possible exertion was made by captain Henley to warp the schooner up, without success, from the extreme rapidity of the current occasioned by the very uncommon rise of the river. On the afternoon of the 26th, at the request of general Jackson, I visited him at his head-quarters, and went from thence to town to equip and arm with two thirty-two-pounders, such merchant vessels in port, as I might find capable of supporting them. During the 24th, 25th, and 26th, fired at the enemy whenever they could be seen. Owing to the calmness of the night of the 23d, the Louisiana could not join me till (he morning of the 24th, when she fortunately anchored about one mile above the Carolina. By the fire from the enemy on the night of the 23d, one man only was wounded, and very little injury done to the hull, sails, and rigging; in her bulwarks were a great number of musket balls, several in her masts and topmasts, and through her mainsail. Nothing could exceed the incessant fire from the Carolina, which alone can be attributed to the high state of discipline to which captain Henley has brought her crew. Of him, lieutenants Norris and Crawley, and sailingmaster Haller, I cannot speak in too high terms; the petty officers and crew behaved with that cool determined courage and zeal which has so strongly characterized the American tars in the present war.
I have the honour to be, &c.
D. T. Patterson.
Copy of a letter from general Andrew Jackson to the secretary of
Camp near New Orleans, 26th Decmber, 1814.
The enemy having, by the capture of our gun-boats, obtained command of the lakes, were enabled to effect a passage to the Mississippi at a point on the side of New Orleans, and about nine miles below it. The moment I received the intelligence, I hastened to attack him in his first position. It was brought on in the night and resulted very honourably to our arms. The heavy smoke, occasioned by an excessive fire, rendered it necessary that I should draw off my troops, after a severe conflict of upwards of an hour.
The attack was made on the night of the 23d. Since then both armies have remained near the battle-ground, making preparations for something more decisive.
The enemy's force exceeded ours by double, and their loss was proportionably greater. The moment I can spare the time, I will forward you a detailed account. In the meantime I expect something far more important will take place. I hope to be able to sustain tho honour of our arms and to secure the safety of this country.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Major-general Jackson to the secretary of war.
Head-quarters, 7th military district, camp below New Orleans, 27th December, A. M.
The loss of our gun-boats near the pass of the Rigolets, having given the enemy command of lake Borgne, lie was enabled to choose his point of attack. It became therefore an object of importance to obstruct the numerous bayous and canals leading from that lake to the highlands op the Mississippi. This important service was committed, in the first instance, to a detachment from the 7th regiment, afterwards to colonel Delaronde of the Louisiana militia, and lastly, to make all sure, to major-general Villeré, commanding the district between the river and the lakes, and who, being a native of the country, was presumed to be best acquainted with all those passes. Unfortunately, however, a picquet which the general had estsblished at the mouth of the bayou Bienvenu, and which, notwithstanding my orders, had been left unobstructed, was completely surprised, and the enemy penetrated through a canal leading to his farm about two leagues below the city, and succeeded in cutting off a company of militia stationed there. The intelligence was communicated to me about 2 o’clock of the 23d. My force, at this time, consisted of parts of the 7th and 44th regiments, not exceeung six hundred together, the city militia, a part of general Coffee’s brigade of mounted gun-men, and the detached militia from tie western division of Tennessee, under the command of major-general Carrol — these two last corps were stationed four miles above the city. Apprehending a double attack by the way of Chef-Menteur, I left general Carroll’s force, and the militia of the city, posted on the Gentilly road; and at 5 o’clock P. M. marched to meet the enemy, whom I was resolved to attack in his first position, with major Hind’s dragoons, general Coffee’s brigade, parts of the 7th and 44th regiments, the uniform companies of militia under the command of major Plauche, two hundred men of colour (chiefly from St. Domingo) raised by colonel Savary and acting under the command of major Daquin, and a detachment of artillery under the direction of colonel M‘Rea, with two six-pounders under the command of lieut. Spots — not exceeding in all fifteen hundred. I arrived near the enemy’s encampment about 7, and immediately made my dispositions for the attack. His forces amounting at that time on land to about three thousand, extended half a mile on the river, and in the rear nearly to the wood. General Coffee was ordered to turn their right, while, with the residue of the force, I attacked his strongest position on the left, near the river. Commodore Patterson having dropped down the river in the schooner Carolina, was directed to open a fire upon their camp, which he executed at about half after 7. This being the signal of attack, general Coffee’s men, with their usual impetuosity, rushed on the enemy's right, and entered their camp, while our right advanced with equal ardour. There can be but little doubt that we should have succeeded on that occasion, with our inferior force, in destroying or capturing the enemy, had not a thick fog, which arose about 8 o’clock, occasioned some confusion among the different corps. Fearing the consequences, under this circumstance, of the further prosecution of a night ittack with troops then acting together for the first time, I contented myself with lying on the field that night; and at 4 in the morning assumed a stronger position about two miles nearer to the city. At this position I remain encamped, waiting the arrival of the Kentucky militia and other re-enforcements. As the safety of he city will depend on the fate of this army, it must not be incautiously exposed.
In this affair the whole corps under my command deserve the greatest credit. The best compliment I can pay to general Coffee and his brigade, is to say they behaved as they have always done while under my command. The 7th, led by major Peire, and the 44th, commanded by colonel Ross, distinguished. themselves. The battalion of city militia, commanded by major Plauche, realized my anticipations, and behaved like veterans — Savary’s volunteers manifested great bravery — and the company of city riflemen, having penetrated into the midst of the enemy's camp, were surrounded, and fought their way out with the greatest heroism, bringing with them a number of prisoners. The two field pieces were well served by the officer commanding them.
All my officers in the line did their duty, and I have every reason to be satisfied with the whole of my field and staff. — Colonels Butler and Piatt, and major Chotard, by their intrepidity, saved the artillery. Colonel Haynes was every where that duty or danger called. I was deprived of the services of one of my aids, captain Butler, whom I was obliged to station, to his great regret in town. Captain Reid, my other aid, and Messrs. Livingston, Ouplessis and Davezac, who hid volunteered their services, faced danger wherever it was to be met, and carried my orders with the utmost promptitude.
We made one major, two subalterns, and sixty-three privates prisoners; and the enemy’s loss in killed and wounded must have been at least. My own loss I have not as yet been able to ascertain with exactness, but suppose it to amount to one hundred in killed, wounded and missing. Among the former I have to lament the loss of colonel Lauderdale of general Coffee’s brigade, who fell while bravely fighting. Colonels Dyer and Gibson, of the same corps, were wounded, and major Kavenaugh taken prisoner.
Colonel Delaronde, major Villeré of the Louisiana militia, major Latour of engineers, having no command, volunteered their services, as did Drs. Kerr and Flood, and were of great assistance to me.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Copy of a letter from captain Henley, commanding late United States’ schooner Carolina, to commodore Patterson, dated
New Orleans, December 28, 1814.
I have the honour to inform you, that after you left here on the 26th instant, in pursuance to your order, every possible exertion was made to move the schooner Carolina higher up the river and near general Jackson's camp, without success; the wind being at N. N. W. and blowing fresh and too scant to get under way, and the current too rapid to move her by warping, which I had endeavoured to do with my crew.
At daylight, on the morning of the 27th, the enemy opened upon the Carolina a battery of five guns, from which they threw shells and hot shot; returned their fire with the long twelve-pounder, the only gun on board which could reach across the river, the remainder of her battery being light twelve-pound carronades.
The air being light aid at north, rendered it impossible to get under way; the second shot fired by the enemy lodged in the schooner’s main-hold urder her cables, and in such a situation as not to be come at, and fired her, which rapidly progressed; finding that hot shot were passing through her cabin and filling room, which contained a considerable quantity of powder; her bulwarks all knocked down by the enemy’s shot, the vessel in a sinking situation, and the fire increasing, and expecting every moment that she would blow up, at a little after sunrise I reluctantly gave orders for the crew to abandon her, which was effected, with the loss of one killed and six wounded; a short time after I had succeeded in getting the crew on shore, I had the extreme mortification of seeing her blow up.
It affords me great pleasure to acknowledge the able assistance 1 received from lieutenants Norris and Crawley, and sailingmaster Haller, and to say that my officers and crew behaved on this occasion, as well as on the 23d when under your own eye, in a most gallant manner.
Almost every article of clothing belonging to the officers and crew, from the rapid progress of the fire, was involved in the destruction of the vessel.
I have the honour to be, &c.
John D. Henley.
P. S. I have not made out a detailed account of the action on the night of the 23d, as you were on board during the whole action.
Letter from major-general Jackson, to the secretary of war, dated Head-quarters, seventh military district,
Camp below New Orleans, December 29, 1814.
The enemy succeeded on the 27th in blowing up the Carolina (she being becalmed) by means of hot shot from a land battery which he had erected in the night. Emboldened by this event, he marched his whole force the next day up the levee, in the hope of driving us from our position, and with this view, opened upon us, at the distance of about half mile, his bombs and rockets. He was repulsed, however, with considerable loss; not less, it is believed, than one hundred and twenty in killed. Ours was inconsiderable; not exceeding half a dozen killed and a dozen wounded.
Since then he has not ventured to repeat his attempt, though lying close together. There has been frequent skirmishing between our picquets.
I lament that I have not the means of carrying on more offensive operations. The Kentucky troops have not arrived, and my effective force at this point, does not exceed three thousand. Theirs must be at least double; both prisoners and deserters agreeing in the statement that seven thousand landed from their boats.
Copy of a letter from commodore Patterson, commanding our naval force on the Orleans station, to the secretary of the navy, dated U. S. ship Louisiana, 4 miles below New Orleans,
29th December, 1814.
I have the honour to inform you, that on the morning of the 28th instant, at about half past seven, perceived our advanced-guard retreating towards our lines — the enemy pursuing; fired shot, 'shells, and rockets, from field artillery, with which they advanced on the road behind the levee; sprung the ship to bring the starboard guns to bear upon the enemy; at 25 minutes past 8 A. M. the enemy opened their fire upon the ship, with shells, hot shot, and rockets, which was instanlly returned with great spirit and much apparent effect, and continued without intermission till one P. M. when the enemy slackened their fire, and retreated with a part of their artillery from each of their batteries, evidently with great loss. Two attempts were made to screen one heavy piece of ordnance mounted behind the levee, with which they threw hot shot at the ship, and which had been a long time abandoned her fore they succeeded in recovering it, and then it must have been with very great loss, as I distinctly saw, with the aid of my glass, several shot strike in the midst of the men (seamen) who were employed dragging it away. At 3 P. M. the enemy were silenced; at 4 P. M. ceased firing from the ship, the enemy having retired beyond the range of her guns. Many of their shot passed over the ship, and their shells burst over her decks, which were strewed with their fragments; yet, after an incessant cannonading of upwards of seven hours, during which time eight hundred shot were fired from the ship, one man only was wounded slightly, by the piece of a shell, and one shot passed between the bowsprit and heel of the jib-boom.
The enemy drew up his whole force, evidently with an intention of assaulting general Jackson's lines, under cover of his heavy cannon; but his cannonading being so warmly returned from the lines and ship Louisiana, caused him, I presume, to abandon his project, as he retired without making the attempt. You will have learned by my former letters, that the crew of the Louisiana is composed of men of all nations, (English excepted) taken from the streets of New Orleans not a fortnight before the battle; yet I never knew guns better served, or a more animated fire, than was supported from her.
Lieutenant C. C. B. Thompson deserves great credit for the discipline to which in so short a time he had brought such men, two-thirds of whom do not understand English.
General Jackson having applied for officers and seamen to work the heavy cannon on his lines furnished by me, lieutenants Norris and Crawley, of the late schooner Carolina, instantly volunteered, and with the greater part of her crew were sent to those cannon, which they served during the action herein detailed. The enemy must have suffered a great loss in that day's action, by the heavy fire from this ship and general Jackson’s lines, where the cannon was of heavy calibre, and served with great spirit.
I have the honour to be, with great consideration and respect, your obedient servant,
Daniel T. Patterson.
Letter from commodore Patterson to the secretary of the navy. Marine Batteries, 5 miles below N. Orleans, January 2, 1815
Finding the advantageous effect which resulted from the flanking-fire upon the enemy from the Louisiana, as detailed in my letter of the 29th ultimo, I that night had brought down from the navy yard, and mounted in silence, a twenty-four pounder on shore, in a position where it could most annoy the enemy when throwing up works on the levee or in the field. On the 30th opened upon the enemy with the twenty-four pounder, which drove them from their works, the ship firing at the same time upon their advance, which retired from the levee and sheltered itself behind houses, &c. The great effect produced by the gun on shore, induced me on the 31st to land from the Louisiana two twelve-pounders, which I mounted behind the levee in the most advantageous position, to harass the flank of the enemy in his approaches to our lines, and to aid our right. At four A. M. the enemy opened a fire upon the left of our line with artillery and musketry, which was returned most spiritly with artillery and musketry. At two P. M. the enemy having retired, the firing ceased.
On the first instant, at ten A. M. after a very thick fog, the enemy commenced a heavy cannonading upon general Jackson's lines and my battery, from batteries they had thrown up during, the preceding night on the levee; which was returned from our lines and my battery, and terminated, after a most incessant fire from both parties of nearly five hours, in the enemy being silenced and driven from their works; many of their shells went immediately over my battery, and their shot passed through my breastwork and embrazures, without injuring a man. On this, as on the 28th, I am happy to say, that my officers and men behaved to my entire satisfaction; but I beg leave particularly to name acting lieutenant Campbell, acting sailing-master John Gates, acting midshipman Philip Philibert, of the Louisiana, and sailingmaster Haller, of the late schooner Carolina. I did not drop the Louisiana down within the range of their shot, having learnt from deserters that a furnace of shot was kept in constant readiness at each of their batteries to burn her; and the guns being of much greater effect on shore, her men were drawn to man them, and I was particularly desirous to preserve her from the hot shot, as I deemed her of incalculable service to cover the army in the event of general Jackson retiring from his present line to those which he had thrown up in his rear.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Daniel T. Patterson
Copy of a letter from major-general Jackson to the secretary of war, dated
Camp, four miles below Orleans, 9th January, 1815.
During the days of the 6th and 7th, the enemy had been actively employed in making preparations for an attack on my lines. With infinite labour they had succeeded on the night of the 7th in getting their boats across from the lake to the river, by widening and deepening the canal on which they had effected their disembarkation. It had not been in my power to impede these operations by a general attack — added to other reasons, the nature of flie troops under my command, mostly militia, rendered it too hazardous to attempt extensive offensive movements in an open country, against a numerous and well-disciplined army. Although my forces, as to number, had been increased by the arrival of the Kentucky division, my strength had received very little addition; a small portion only of that detachment being provided with arms. Compelled thus to wait the attack of the enemy, I took every measure to repel it when it should be made, and to defeat the object he had in view. General Morgan with the Orleans contingent, the Louisiana militia, and a strong detachment of the Kentucky troops, occupied an intrenched camp on the opposite side of the river, protected by strong batteries on the bank, erected and superintended by commodore Patterson.
In my encampment every thing was ready for action, when early on the morning of the 8th the enemy, after throwing a heavy shower of bombs and congreve rockets, advanced their columns on my right and left, to storm my intrenchments. I cannot speak sufficiently in praise of the firmness and deliberation with which my whole line received their approach. More could not have been expected from veterans inured to war. — For an hour the fire of the small arms was as incessant and severe as can be imagined. The artillery, too, directed by officers who displayed equal skill and courage, did great execution. Yet the columns of the enemy continued to advance with a firmness which reflects upon them the greatest credit. Twice the column which approached me on my left, was repulsed by the troops of general Carroll, those of general Coffee and a division of the Kentucky militia, and twice they formed again and renewed the assault. At length, however, cut to pieces, they fled in confusion from the field, leaving it covered with their dead and wounded. The loss which the enemy sustained on this occasion, cannot be estimated at less than fifteen hundred in killed, wounded, and prisoners. Upwards of three hundred have already been delivered over for burial; and my men are still engaged in picking them up within my lines, and carrying them to the point where the enemy are to receive them. This is in addition to the dead and wounded whom the enemy have been enabled to carry from the field during and since the action, and to those who have since died of the wounds they received. We have taken about five hundred prisoners, upwards of three hundred of whom are wounded, and a great part of them mortally. My loss has not exceeded, and I believe has not amounted to ten killed and as many wounded. The entire destruction of the enemy's army was now inevitable, had it not been for an unfortunate occurrence, which at this moment took place on the other side of the river. Simultaneously with his advance upon my lines, he had thrown over in his boats a considerable force to the other side of the river. These having landed, were hardy enough to advance against the works of general Morgan; and, what is strange and difficult to account for, at the very moment when their entire discomfiture was looked for with a confidence approaching to certainty, the Kentucky re-enforcements, in whom so much reliance had been placed, ingloriously fled, drawing after them, by their example, the remainder of the forces; and thus yielding to the enemy that most formidable position. The batteries which had rendered me, for many days, the most important service, though bravely defended, were, of course, now abandoned; not however until the guns had been spiked.
This unfortunate rout had totally changed the aspect of affairs. The enemy now occupied a position from which they might annoy us without hazard, and by means of which they might have been able to defeat, in a great measure, the effects of our success on this side the river. It became therefore an object of the first consequence to dislodge him as soon as possible. For this object, all the means in my power, which I could with any safety use, were immediately put in preparation. Perhaps, however, it was owing somewhat to another cause that I succeeded even beyond my expectations. In negotiating the terms of a temporary suspension of hostilities, to enable the enemy to bury their dead and provide for their wounded, I had required certain propositions to be acceded to as a basis, among which this was one — that, although hostilities should cease on this side the river until twelve o’clock of this day, yet it was not to be understood that they should cease on the other side; but that no re-enforcements should be sent across by either army until the expiration of that day. His excellency major-general Lambert begged time to consider of those propositions until ten o’clock of to-day, and in the meantime re-crossed his troops. I need not tell you with how much eagerness I immediately regained possession of the position he had thus happily quitted.
The enemy having concentrated his forces, may again attempt to drive me from my position by storm. Whenever he does, I have no doubt my men will act with their usual firmness, and sustain a character now become dear to them.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Copy of a letter from major-general Jackson to the secretary of war, dated
Camp, four miles below New Orleans, January 13, 1815.
At such a crisis I conceive it my duty to keep you constantly advised of my situation.
On the 10th instant I forwarded you an account of the bold attempt made by the enemy on the morning of the 8th, to take possession of my works by storm, and of the severe repulse which he met with. That report having been sent by the mail which crosses the lake, may possibly have miscarried; for which reason I think it the more necessary briefly to repeat the substance of it.
Early on the morning of the 8th, the enemy having been actively employed the two preceding days in making preparations for a storm, advanced in two strong columns on my right and left. They were received however, with a firmness which it seems they little expected, and which defeated all their hopes. My men, undisturbed by their approach, which indeed they had long anxiously wished for, opened upon them a fire so deliberate and certain, as rendered their scaling ladders and fascines, as their more direct implements of warfare, perfectly useless. For upwards of an hour it was continued with a briskness of which there has been but few instances, perhaps, in any country. In justice to the enemy it must be said, they withstood it as long as could have been expected from the most determined bravery. At length, however, when all prospects of success became hopeless, they fled in confusion from the field — leaving it covered with their dead and wounded. Their loss was immense. I had first computed it at fifteen hundred; it is since ascertained to hare been much greater. Upon information which is believed to be correct, colonel Hayne, the inspector-general, reports it to be in the total two thousand six hundred. His report I enclose you. My loss was inconsiderable being only
seven killed and six wounded.
Such a disproportion in loss, when we consider the number and the kind of troops engaged, must, I know, excite astonishment, and may not every where, be fully credited; yet I am perfectly satisfied that the account is not exaggerated on the one part, nor underrated on the other.
The enemy having hastily quitted a post which they had gained possession of on the other side of the river, and we having immediately returned to it, both armies at present occupy their former positions. Whether, after the severe loss he has sustained, he is preparing to return to his shipping or to make still mightier efforts to attain his first object, I do not pretend to determine — it becomes me to act as though the latter were his intention. One thing, however, seems certain, that if he still calculates on effecting what he has hitherto been unable to accomplish, he must expect considerable re-enforcements; as the force with which he landed must undoubtedly be diminished by at least three thousand. Besides the loss which he sustained on the night of the 23d ult. which is estimated at four hundred, he cannot have suffered less between that period and the morning of the 8th inst. than three hundred — having, within that time, been repulsed in two general
attempts to drive us from our position, and there having been continual cannonading and skirmishing during the whole of it. Yet he is still able to show a very formidable force.
There is little doubt that the commanding general, sir Edward Packenham, was killed in the action of the 8th, and that major-generals Kean and Gibbs were badly wounded.
Whenever a more leisure moment shall occur, I will take the liberty to make out and forward you a more circumstantial account of the several actions, and particularly that of the 8th; in doing which my chief motive will be to render justice to those brave men I have the honour to command, and who have so remarkably distinguished themselves.
I have the honour to be, &c.
P. S. A correct list of my killed and wounded will be forwarded you by the adjutant-general.
Letter from A. P. Hayne, to major-general Jackson, dated Head-quarters, left bank of the Mississippi,
five miles below New Orleans, January 13, 1815.
I have the honour to make the following report of the killed, wounded, and prisoners taken at the battle of Macrardie's plantation on the left bank of the Mississippi, on the morning of the 8th January, 1815, and five miles below the city of New Orleans.
I have the honour to be, &c.
A. P. Hayne.
Copy of a letter from major-general Jackson to the secretary of war, dated
Camp, four miles below New Orleans, January 19, 1815.
Last night, at twelve o’clock, the enemy precipitately decamped and returned to his boats. leaving behind him, under medical attendance, eighty of his wounded including two officers, fourteen pieces of his heavy artillery, and a quantity of shot, having destroyed much of his powder. Such was the situation of the ground which he abandoned, and of that through which he retired, protected by canals, redoubts, intrenchments, and swamps on his right, and the river on his left, that I could not without encountering a risk, which true policy did not seem to require or to authorize, attempt to annoy him much on his retreat. We took only eight prisoners.
Whether it is the purpose of the enemy to abandon the expedition altogether, or renew his efforts at some other point, I do not pretend to determine with positiveness. In my own mind, however, there is but little doubt that his last exertions have been made in this quarter, at any rate for the present season, and by the next I hope we shall be fully prepared for him. In this belief I am strengthened not only by the prodigious loss he has sustained at the position he has just quitted, but by the failure of his fleet to pass fort St. Philip.
His loss on this ground, since the debarkation of his troops, as stated by the last prisoners and deserters, and as confirmed by many additional circumstances, must have exceeded four thousand; and was greater in the action of the 8th than was estimated, from the most correct data then in his possession, by the inspector-general, whose report has been forwarded to you. We succeeded, on the 8th, in getting from the enemy about one thousand stand of arms of various descriptions.
Since the action of the 8th, the enemy have been allowed very little respite — my artillery from both sides of the river being constantly employed till the night, and indeed until the hour of their retreat, in annoying them. No doubt they thought it quite time to quit a position in which so little rest could be found.
I am advised by major Overton, who commands at fort St. Philip, in a letter of the 18th, that the enemy having bombarded his fort for eight or nine days, from thirteen-inch mortars without effect, had on the morning of that day retired. I have little doubt that he would have been able to have sunk their vessels had they attempted to run by.
Giving the proper weight to all these considerations, I believe you will not think me too sanguine in the belief that Louisiana is now clear of its enemy. I hope, however, I need not assure you, that wherever I command, such a belief shall never occasion any relaxation in the measures for resistance. I am but too sensible that the moment when the enemy is opposing us, is not the most proper to provide for them.
I have the honour to be, &c.
P. S. On the 18th our prisoners on shore were delivered to us, an exchange having been previously agreed to. Those who are on board the fleet will be delivered at Petit Coquille — after which I shall still have in my hands an excess of several hundred.
20th — Mr. Shields, purser in the navy, has to-day taken fiftyfour prisoners; among them are four officers.
Letter from adjutant-general Robert Butler, to brigadier-general Parker, dated
Head-quarters, 7th Military district, Adjutant-general’s office, Jackson’s Lines, below Orleans, Jan. 16, 1815.
I have the honour herewith to enclose for the information of the war department, a report of the killed, wounded, and missing of the army under the command of major-general Jackson, in the different actions with the enemy since their landing.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Report of the killed, wounded, and missing, of the army under the command of major-general Andrew Jackson, in the actions of the 23d and 28th of December 1814, and 1st and 8th of January, 1815, with the enemy.
action of december
Killed — Artillerymen, 1; 7th United States’ infantry, 1 lieutenant (M‘Clellan), 1 sergeant, 1 corporal, 4 privates; 44th do. 7 privates; general Coffee’s brigade volunteer mounted gun-men, 1 lieutenant-colonel (Lauderdale), 1 captain (Pace), 1 lieutenant (Samuel Brooks), 2 sergeants, 4 privates. — Total 24.
Wounded — General staff, 1 colonel (col. Piatt) — 7th United States’ infantry, captain (A. A. White), 1 ensign, 1 sergeant, corporals, 23 privates; 44th do. 2 lieutenants, 3 sergeants, 2 corporals, 19 privates; general Coffee’s brigade, 1 colonel, 2 lieutenant-colonels, 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 1 quarter-master sergeant, 3 sergeants, 2 corporals, 1 musician, 30 privates; New Orleans volunteer corps, 1 captain, 2 sergeants, 7 privates; volunteers of colour, 1 adjutant and 6 privates. — Total wounded, 115.
Musing — General Coffee's brigade; 1 major, 2 captains, 3 lieutenants, 1 quarter-master, 3 ensigns or cornets, 4 sergeants, 1 corporal, 2 musicians, 57 privates. — Total missing 74.
Total killed, wounded, and missing on the 23d — 213.
action of december
Killed — General Coffee's brigade, 1 private; New Orleans volunteer company, 1 private; general Carroll's division of Tennessee militia, ' 1 colonel (Henderson), I sergeant, 5 privates — Total 9;
Wounded — Marines, 1 major (Carmick); New Orleans volunteer company, 3 privates; general Carroll's division, 1 lieutenant, 3 privates Total wounded, 8.
Missing — None.
Total killed, wounded, and missing on this day, 17.
action of 1st january
Killed — Artillery, navy, and volunteers at batteries, 8 privates; 44th ditto, 1 private; general Coffee’s brigade, 1 sergeant; general Carroll’s division, 1 private. — Total 11.
Wounded — Artillery, navy, and volunteers at batteries, 8; 7th United States’ infantry, 1 private; 44th do. 3; general Coffee’s brigade, 2; New Orleans volunteers, 3 privates; general Carroll’s division, 1 sergeant, 2 privates; volunteers of colour, 1 lieutenant, 1 sergeant, 1 private. — Total 23.
Missing — None.
Total of killed, wounded, and missing this day, 34.
action on both sides the river, 8th january, 1815.
Killed — Artillery, navy, and volunteers at batteries, 3 privates; 7th United States’ infantry, 1 sergeant, 1 corporal; general Coffee’s brigade, 1 private; Carroll’s division, 1 sergeant, 3 privates; Kentucky militia 1 private; majors Lacoste’s and Dacquin’s volunteers of colour, 1 private; general Morgan’s militia, 1 private. Total killed, 13.
Wounded — Artillery, &c. one private; 7th United States’ infantry, one private; general Carroll’s division, one ensign, one sergeant, six privates; Kentucky militia, one adjutant, one corporal, and ten privates; volunteers of colour, one ensign, three sergeants, one corporal, eight privates; general Morgan’s militia, two sergeants, two privates. — Total wounded, thirty-nine.
Missing. — Kentucky militia, four privates; Morgan’s militia, fifteen privates — Total nineteen.
Total killed, wounded and missing this day, seventy-one.
Note — Of the killed, wounded and missing on this day, but six killed and seven wounded in the action on the east bank of the river, the residue in a sortie after the action, and in the action on the west bank.
Letter from Commodore Patterson to the Secretary of the Navy.
Marine battery,five miles below New Orleans, 13th January, 1815.
I have the honour to inform you, that during the 2d and 3d instant, I landed from the ship and mounted, as the former ones, on the banks of the river, four more twelve-pounders, and erected a furnace for heating shot, to destroy a number of buildings which intervened between general Jackson's lines and the camp of the enemy and occupied by him. On the evening of the 4th I succeeded in firing a number of them, and some rice stacks by my hot shot, which the enemy attempted to extinguish, notwithstanding the heavy fire I kept up, but which at length compelled them to desist. On the 6th and 7th I erected another furnace, and mounted on the banks of the river two more twenty-four pounders, which had been brought up from the English Turn, by the exertions of colonel Caldwell, of the drafted militia of this state, and brought within and mounted on the intrenchments on this side the river, one twelve-pounder; in addition to which, general Morgan, commanding the militia on this side, planted two brass six-pound field pieces in his lines, which were incomplete, having been commenced only on the 4th; these three pieces were the only cannon on the lines, all the others being mounted on the bank of the river, with a view to aid the right of general Jackson's lines on the opposite shore, and to flank the enemy should they attempt to march up the road leading along the levee, or erect batteries on the same, of course could render no aid in defence of general Morgan’s lines. My battery was manned in part from the crew of the ship, and in part by militia detailed for that service by general Morgan, as I had not seamen enough to fully man them.
During greater part of the 7th, reconnoitred the enemy at Villeré’s plantation, whose canal, I was informed, they were deepening and opening to the river, for the purpose of getting their lanches in, which upon examination with my glass I found to be true, and informed general Jackson of my observations by letters, copies of which I enclose herewith; a re-enforcement to general Morgan’s militia was made in consequence, consisting of of about four hundred militia from Kentucky, very badly armed or equipped, the general not having arms to furnish them, who arrived on this side on the morning of the 8th much fatigued. At 1 A. M. finding that the enemy had succeeded in lanching their barges into the river, I despatched my aid-de-camp, Mr. R. D. Shepherd, to inform general Jackson of the circumstance, and that a very uncommon stir was observed in the enemy’s camp and batteries on the banks of the river, and stating again the extreme weakness of this side the river, and urging a re-enforcement. I would have immediately dropped down with the Louisiana upon their barges; but to do so I must have withdrawn all the men from the battery on shore, which I deemed of the greatest importance, and exposed the vessel to fire by hot shot from the enemy's batteries, mounting six long eighteen-pounders, which protected their barges; and at this time she had on board a large quantity of powder, for the supply of her own guns, and those on shore, most of which was above the surface of the water, consequently exposed to their hot shot.
General Morgan despatched the Kentuckians immediately on their arrival, about 5 A. M. to re-enforce a party which had been sent out early on the night of the 7th, to watch and oppose the landing of the enemy, but who retreated after a few shot from the enemy within the lines, where they were immediately posted in their station on the extreme right. At daylight, the enemy opened a heavy cannonade upon general Jackson’s lines and my battery, leading their troops under cover of their cannon to the assault of the lines, which they attempted on the right and left, but principally on the latter wing; they were met by a most tremendous and incessant fire of artillery and musketry, which compelled them to retreat with precipitation; leaving the ditch filled, and the field strewed with their dead and wounded. My battery was opened upon them simultaneously with those from our lines, flanking the enemy both in his advance and retreat with round, grape and canister, which must have proved extremely destructive, as in their haste and confusion to retreat they crowded the top of the levee, affording us a most advantageous opportunity for the use of grape and canister, which I used to the greatest advantage. While thus engaged with the enemy on the opposite shore, I was informed that they had effected their landing on this side, and were advancing to general Morgan’s breastwork. I immediately ordered the officers in command of my guns to turn them in their embrazures, and point them to protect general Morgan’s right wing, whose lines not extending to the swamp, and those weakly manned, I apprehended the enemy's outflanking him on that wing; which order was promptly executed by captain Henley and the officers stationed at the battery, under a heavy and well directed fire of shot and shells from the enemy on the opposite bank of the river. At this time the enemy’s force had approached general Morgan's lines, under the cover of a shower of rockets, and charged in despite of the fire from the twelve-pounder and field-pieces mounted on the lines as before stated; when in a few minutes I had the extreme mortification and chagrin to observe general Morgan’s right wing, composed as herein mentioned of the Kentucky militia, commanded by major Davis, abandon their breastwork and flying in a most shameful and dastardly manner, almost without a shot; which disgraceful example, after firing a few rounds, was soon followed by the whole of general Morgan’s command, notwithstanding every exertion was made by him, his staff and several officers of the city militia, to keep them to their posts. By the great exertions of those officers a short stand was effected on the field, when a discharge of rockets from the enemy, caused them again to retreat in such a manner that no efforts could stop them.
Finding myself thus abandoned by the force I relied upon to protect my battery, I was most reluctantly and with inexpressible pain, after destroying my powder and spiking my cannon, compelled to abandon them, having only thirty officers and seamen with mc. A part of the militia were rallied at a saw-mill canal, about two miles above the lines from which they had fled, and there encamped. I ordered the Louisiana to be warped up for the purpose of procuring a supply of ammunition, and mounting other cannon, remaining myself to aid general Morgan. A large re-enforcement of militia having been immediately despatched by general Jackson to this side, every arrangement was made by general Morgan to dislodge the enemy from his position, when he precipitately retreated, carrying with him the two field pieces and a brass howitz, after having first set fire to the platforms and gun-carriages on my battery, two saw-mills, and all the bridges between him and general Morgan's troops, and recrossed the river, and secured his boats by hauling them into his canal. 1 On the 9th we re-occupied our former ground, and recovered all the cannon in my battery, which I immediately commenced drilling and remounting; and on the evening of the 10th had two twenty-four-pounders mounted and ready for service, on the left flank of a new and more advantageous position. From the 10th to the present date I have been much engaged in mounting my twelvepounders along the breastwork erected by general Morgan on this new position, having three twenty-four pounders (with a furnace) to front the river, and flank general Jackson's lines on the opposite bank, from which we fired upon the enemy wherever he appeared. Our present position is now so strong that there is nothing to apprehend should the enemy make another attempt on this side.
To captain Henley, who has been with me since the destruction of his schooner, and who was wounded on the 8th, I am much indebted for his aid on every occasion, and to the officers commanding the different guns in my battery, for their great exertions at all times, but particularly on the trying event of the 8th. The exertions of general Morgan, his staff, and several of the officers of the city militia, excited my highest respect, and I deem it my duty to say that had the drafted and city militia been alone on that day, that I
they would have done much better; but the flight of the Kentuckians paralized their exertions and produced a retreat, which could not be checked. The two brass field pieces, manned entirely by militia of the city, were admirably served, nor were they abandoned till deserted by their comrades, one of which was commanded by Mr. Hosmer, of captain Simpson’s company, the other by a Frenchman, whose name I know not. The twelve-pounder under the direction of acting midshipman Philibert, was served till the last moment, did great execution, and is highly extolled by general Morgan. The force of the enemy on this side amounted to one thousand men, and from the best authority I can obtain, their loss on this side, I have since learned, was ninety-seven killed and wounded; among the latter is colonel Thornton who commanded; of the former five or six have been discovered buried, and lying upon the field; our loss was one man killed and several wounded.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Daniel T. Patterson.
Address of the major-general commanding the 7th military district, to the troofis stationed on the right bank of the Mississippi.
January 8, 1815.
While by the blessing of Heaven directing the valour of the troops under my command, one of the most brilliant victories in the annals of the war, was obtained by my immediate command; no words can express the mortification I felt at witnessing the scene exhibited on the opposite bank. I will spare your feelings and my own by entering into no detail on the subject; to all who reflect, it must be a source of eternal regret, that a few moments exertion of that courage you certainly possess, was alone wanting to have rendered your success more complete than that of your fellow citizens in this camp, by the defeat of the detachment which was rash enough to cross the river to attack you. To what cause was the abandonment of your lines owing? To fear? No! You are the countrymen, the friends, the brothers of those who have secured to themselves by their courage, the gratitude of their country; who have been prodigal of their blood in its defence, and who are strangers to any other fear than that of disgrace — to disaffection to our glorious cause? No, my countrymen, your general does justice to the pure sentiments by which you are inspired. How then could brave men, firm in the cause in which they were enrolled, neglect theit first duty, and abandon the post committed to their care? The want of discipline, the want of order, a total disregard to obedience, and a spirit of insubordination, not less destructive than cowardice itself, this appears to be the cause which led to the disaster, and the causes must be eradicated, or I must cease to command; and I desire to be distinctly understood, that every breach of orders, all want of discipline, every inattention of duty will be seriously and promptly punished, that the attentive officers, and good soldiers may not be mentioned in the disgrace and danger which the negligence of a few may produce. Soldiers! you want only the will, in order to emulate the glory of your fellow citizens on this bank of the river — you have the same motives for action; the same interest; the same country to protect, and you have an additional interest from past events, to wipe off the stain and show, what, no doubt, is the fact, that you will not be inferior in the day of trial to any of your countrymen.
But remember, that without obedience, without order, without discipline, all your efforts are vain, and the brave man, inattentive to his duty, is worth little more to his country than the coward who deserts her in the hour of danger. Private opinions, as to the competency of officers, must not be indulged, and still less expressed; it is impossible that the measure of those who command should satisfy all who are bound to obey, and one of the most dangerous faults in a soldier is a disposition to criticise and blame the orders and characters of his superiors. Soldiers! I know that many of you have done your duty; and I trust in my next address, I shall have no reason to make any exception. Officers! I have the fullest confidence that you will enforce obedience to your commands, and above all, that by subordination in your different grades, you will set the example of it to your men; and that hereafter the army of the right will yield to none in the essential qualities which characterize good soldiers; and that they .will earn their share of those honours and rewards, which their country will prepare for its deliverers.
Provisional articles agreed on between major Smith, authorized by major-general Lambert, and Edward Livingston, an aid-de-camp to major-general Jackson, authorized by him for that purpose, subject to the ratification of the respective commanders of the two armies between the lines. January 17, 1815.
Article 1st. It being understood that admiral- sir Alexander Cochrane has sent, or will immediately send the American prisoners, as well of the army as of the navy, now on board the British fleet, to the mouth of the Rigolets, it is agreed that a nominal and descriptive receipt shall be given for the same upon honour, and that on the receipt of the said prisoners a number of British prisoners equal in rank and number to those so sent to the Rigolets, together with those confined in the British camp, shall be sent to the mouth of the river and be received by ships appointed for that purpose by the admiral.
Art. 2d. At the same time all the prisoners now in the British camp, shall be sent to the American lines, and receipted for as above, not to serve until an equal number of English prisoners shall be delivered.
Art. 3rd. Officers of equal rank shall be exchanged for equal rank, and wounded for wounded, as far as circumstances will permit.
H. Smith, Major.
I approve and ratify the above arrangement.
Letter from major-general Jackson to the secretary at war, dated
H. Q. camp, four miles below N. Orleans, January 19, 1815.
Last night at twelve o'clock the enemy precipitately decamped, leaving behind him, under medical attendance, eighty of his wounded, including two officers, fourteen pieces of artillery, and a considerable quantity of shot, having destroyed much of his powder.
Such was the situation of the ground which he abandoned, and that through which he retired, protected by canals, redoubts, and intrenchments on his right, and the river on his left, that I could not, without encountering a risk which true policy did not seem to require or authorize, annoy him much on his retreat. We took only eight prisoners.
Whether it is the purpose of the enemy to abandon the expedition altogether, or renew his efforts at some other point, I shall not pretend to decide with positiveness; in my own mind, however, there is very little doubt but his last exertions have been made in this quarter, at any rate for the present season, and by the next, if he shall choose to revisit us, I hope we shall be fully prepared for him. In this belief I am strengthened, not only by the prodigious loss he sustained at the position he has just quitted, but by the failure of his fleet to pass fort St. Philip. His loss since the debarkation of his troops, as stated by all the last prisoners and deserters, and as confirmed by many additional circumstances, exceed in the whole four thousand men, and was greater in the action of the 8th, than from the most correct data then in his power, was estimated by the inspector-general, whose report has been forwarded you. I am more and more satisfied in the belief, that had the arms reached us which was destined for us, the whole British army in this quarter would, before this time, have been captured or destroyed. We succeeded, however, on that day, in getting from the enemy about one thousand stand of arms of various descriptions. Since that action I have allowed the enemy very little respite. My artillery from both sides of the river, being constantly employed till the night and the hour of their retreat, in annoying them. It was time to quit a position in which so little rest could be enjoyed.
I am advised by major Overton, who commands fort St. Philip, in a letter of the 18th, that the enemy having bombarded his fort for eight or nine days, with some thirteen-inch shells, without producing any important effect, had on the morning of that day retired. Giving the proper weight to all these considerations, I believe you will not think me too sanguine in the belief that Louisiana is now clear of its enemy.
I hope I need not assure you, however, that wherever I command, such a belief shall not occasion any relaxation in the preparations for resistance. I am but too sensible, that the moment when the enemy is opposing us, is not the most proper for making any preparation.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from major-general Jackson to the Rev. Abbé Dubourg.
H. Q. seventh military district, January 19, 1815.
The signal interposition of Heaven, in giving success to our arms against the enemy, who so lately landed on our shores; an enemy as powerful as inveterate in his hatred; while it must excite in every bosom attached to the happy government under which we live, emotions of the liveliest gratitude, requires at the same time some external manifestation of those feelings.
Permit me, therefore, to entreat, that you will cause the service of public thanksgiving to be performed in the cathedral, in token of the great assistance we have received from the Ruler of all events, and of our humble sense of it.
With the greatest respect,
defence of fort st. philip.
Extract of a letter from major-general Andrew Jackson, to the secretary of war, dated Head Quarters, Seventh Military District, New Orleans, 17th February, 1815.
I have the honour to enclose you major Overton’s report of the attack of fort St. Philip, and of the manner in which it was defended.
The conduct of that officer and of those who acted under him, merits, I think, great praise. They nailed their own colours to the standard and placed those of the enemy underneath them, determined never to surrender the fort.
Copy of a letter from major Overton, commanding fort St. Philip, during the late bombardment of it, to major-general Jackson.
Fort St. Philip, January 19th, 1815.
On the 1st of the present month, I received information that the enemy intended passing this fort to co-operate with their land forces, in the subjugation of Louisiana, and the destruction of the city of New Orleans. To effect this with more facility, they were first with their heavy bomb-vessels to bombard this place into compliance. On the grounds of this information, I turned my attention to the security of my command: I erected small magazines in different parts of the garrison, that if one blew up I could resort to another; built covers for my men to secure them from the explosion of the shells, and removed the combustible matter without the work. Early in the day of the 8th instant, I was advised of their approach, and on the 9th at a quarter past ten A. M. hove in sight two bomb-vessels, one sloop, one brig, and one schooner; they anchored two and a quarter miles below. At half past eleven, and at half past twelve they advanced two barges, apparently for the purpose of sounding within one and a half mile of the fort; at this moment I ordered my water battery, under the command of lieutenant Cunningham, of the navy, to open upon them; its well directed shot caused a precipitate retreat. At half past three o’clock, P. M. the enemy’s bomb-vessels opened their fire from four sea-mortars, two of thirteen inches, two of ten, and to my great mortification I found they were with-_ out the effective range of my shot, as many subsequent experiments proved; they continued their fire with little intermission during the 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, and 17th. I occasionally opened my batteries on them with great vivacity, particularly when they showed a disposition to change their position. On the 17th in the evening, our heavy mortar was said to be in readiness. I ordered that excellent officer captain Wolstonecraft of the artillerists, who previously had charge of it, to open a fire, which was done with great effect, as the enemy from that moment became disordered, and at daylight on the 18th commenced their retreat, after having thrown upwards of a thousand heavy shells, besides small shells from howitzers, round shot and grape, which he discharged from boats under cover of the night.
Our loss in this affair has been uncommonly small, owing entirely to the great pains that was taken by the different officers to keep their men under cover; as the enemy left scarcely ten feet of this garrison untouched.
The officers and soldiers through this whole affair, although nine days and nights under arms in the different batteries, the consequent fatigue and loss of sleep, have manifested the greatest firmness and the most zealous warmth to be at the enemy. To distinguish individuals would be a delicate task as merit was conspicuous every where. Lieutenant Cunningham of the navy, wh� commanded my water battery, with his brave crew, evinced the most determined bravery and uncommon activity throughout; and in fact, sir, the only thing to be regretted is that the enemy was too timid to give us an opportunity of destroying him.
I herewith enclose you a list of the killed and wounded.
I am, sir, very respectfully,
W. H. Overton.
A list of the killed and wounded during the bombardment offort St. Philip, commencing on the 9th and ending on the 18th of January, 1815.
Captain Wolstonecraft’s artillery — Wounded 3.
Captain Murry’s artillery — Killed 2; wounded 1
Captain Bronten’s infantry — Wounded 1.
Captain Wade’s infantry — Wounded 2.
Total killed 2; wounded 7.
An address delivered to the commander-in-chief of the seventh military district, major-general Andrew Jackson, at the ceremony of solemn thanksgiving, after his brilliant defence of New Orleans. By the reverend W. Dubourg, administrator apostolic of the diocese of Louisiana.
Whilst the state of Louisiana, in the joyful transports of her gratitude, hails you as her deliverer, and the asserter of her menaced liberties — whilst grateful America, so lately wrapped up in anxious suspense, on the fate of this important city, the emporium of the wealth of one half of her territory, and the true bulwark of its independence, is now re-echoing from shore to shore your splendid achievements, and preparing to inscribe your name on her immortal rolls, among those of her Washingtons — whilst history, poetry, and the monumental arts will vie in consigning to the admiration of the latest posterity, a triumph perhaps unparalleled in their records — whilst thus raised by universal acclamation to the very pinnacle of fame and ascending clouds of incense, how easy it had been for you, general, to forget the prime Mover of your wonderful successes, and to assume to yourself a praise which must essentially return to that exalted source whence every sort of merit is derived. But better acquainted with the nature of true glory, and justly placing the summit of, your ambition in approving yourself the worthy instrument of Heaven's merciful designs, the first impulse of your religious heart was to acknowledge the signal interposition of Providence — your first step is a solemn display of your humble sense of His favours.
Still agitated at the remembrance of those dreadful agonies from which we have been so miraculously rescued, it is our pride also to acknowledge that the Almighty has truly had the principal hand in our deliverance, and to follow you, general, in attributing to his infinite goodness the homage of our unfeigned gratitude. Let the infatuated votary of a blind chance deride our credulous simplicity; let the cold-hearted atheist look up for the explanation of such important events to the mere concatenation of human causes; to us, the whole universe is loud in proclaiming a supreme Ruler, who as he holds the hearts of man in his hands, holds also the thread of all contingent occurrences. “ Whatever be His intermediate agents,” says an illustrious prelate, “ still on the secret orders of His all-ruling providence, depend the rise and prosperity, as well as the decline and downfall of empires. From His lofty throne above he moves every scene below, now curbing, now letting loose the passions of men; now infusing His own wisdom into the leaders of nations; now confounding their boasted prudence, and spreading upon their councils a spirit of intoxication, and thus executing his uncontrollable judgments on the sons of men, according to the dictates of His own unerring justice.”
To Him, therefore, our most fervent thanks are due for our late unexpected rescue, and it is Him we chiefly intend to praise, when considering you, general, as the man of his right hand, whom he has taken pains to fit out for the important commission of our defence; we extol that fecundity of genius, by which, in an instant of the most discouraging distress, you created unforeseen resources, raised as it were, from the ground, hosts of intrepid warriors, and provided every vulnerable point with ample means of defence. To Him we trace that instinctive superiority of your mind, which at once rallied around you universal confidence; impressed one irresistible movement to all the jarring elements of which this political machine is composed; aroused their slumbering spirits, and diffused through every rank that noble ardour which glowed in your own bosom. To Him in fine, we address our acknowledgments for that consummate prudence which defeated all the combinations of a sagacious enemy, entangled him in the very snares which he had spread before us, and succeeded in effecting his utter destruction, without once exposing the lives of our citizens. Immortal thanks be to His supreme majesty, for sending us such an instrument of his bountiful designs! A gift of that value is the best token of the continuance of his protection — the most solid encouragement to us to sue for new favours. The first which it emboldens us humbly to supplicate as it is the nearer to our throbbing hearts, is that you may long enjoy, general, the honour of your grateful country, of which you will permit us to present you a pledge in this wreath of laurel, the prize of victory, the symbol of immortality. The next is a speedy and honourable termination of the bloody contest in which we are engaged. No one has so efficaciously laboured as you, general, for the acceleration of that blissful period; may we soon reap that sweetest fruit of your splendid and uninterrupted victories.
general jackson’s answer.
Reverend sir — I receive with gratitude and pleasure the symbolical crown which piety has prepared. I receive it in the name of the brave men who have so effectually seconded my exertions for the preservation of their country — they well deserve the laurels which their country will bestow.
For myself, to have been instrumental in the deliverance of such a country, is the greatest blessing that heaven could confer. That it has been effected with so little loss — that so few tears should cloud the smiles of our triumph, and not a cypress leaf be interwoven in the wreath which you present, is a source of the most exquisite enjoyment.
I thank you, reverend sir, most sincerely for the prayers which you offer up for my happiness. May those your patriotism dictates for our beloved country, be first heard. And may mine for your individual prosperity as well as that of the congregation committed to your care, be favourably received — the prosperity, the wealth, the happiness of this city, will then be commensurate with the courage and other qualities of its inhabitants.
To Nicholas Girod, Esq. Mayor of the City of New Orleans.
Head-quarters, 7th military district, January 27, 1815.
Deeply impressed since my arrival with the unanimity and patriotic zeal displayed by the citizens over whom you so worthily preside, I should be inexcusable if any other occupation than that of providing for their defence had prevented my public acknowledgment of their merits. I pray you now, sir, to communicate to the inhabitants of your respectable city, the exalted sense I entertain of their patriotism, love of order, and attachment to the principles of our excellent constitution. The courage they have shown in a period of no common danger, and the fortitude with which they have rejected all the apprehensions which the vicinity of the enemy was calculated to produce, are not more to be admired than their humane attention to our own sick and wounded, as well as to those of that description among the prisoners. The liberality with which their representatives in the city council provided for the families of those who were in the field, evinced an enlightened humanity, and was productive of the most beneficial effects. Seldom in any community, has so much cause been given for deserved praise; while the young were in the field, ahd arrested the progress of the foe, the aged watched over the city, and maintained its internal peace; and even the softer sex encouraged their husbands and brothers to remain at the post of danger and duty. Not content with exerting for the noblest purpose that powerful influence which is given them by nature (and which in your countrywomen is rendered irresistible by accomplishments and beauty) they showed themselves capable of higher efforts, and, actuated by humanity and patriotism, they clothed by their own labour, and protected from the inclemency of the season the men who had marched from a distant state to protect them from insults. In the name of those brave men, I beg you, sir, to convey to them the tribute of our admiration and thanks; assure them that the distant wives and daughters of those whom they have succoured will remember them in their prayers; and that for myself no circumstance of this important campaign touches me with more exquisite pleasure than that I have been enabled to lead back to them, with so few exceptions, the husbands, brothers, and other relatives of whom such women only are worthy.
I anticipate, sir, with great satisfaction, the period when the final departure of the enemy will enable you to resume the ordinary functions of your office, and restore the citizens to their usual occupations — they have merited the blessings of peace by bravely facing the dangers of war.
I should be ungrateful or insensible, if I did not acknowledge the marks of confidence and affectionate attachment with which I have personally been honoured by your citizens; a confidence that has enabled me with greater success to direct the measures for their defence, an attachment which I sincerely reciprocate, and which I shall carry with me to the grave.
For yourself, Mr. Mayor, I pray you to accept my thanks for the very great zeal, integrity, and diligence with which you have conducted the arduous department of the police committed to your care, and the promptitude with which every requisition for the public service has been carried into effect.
Connected with the United States, your city must become the greatest emporium of commerce that the world has known. In the hands of any other power it can be nothing but a wretched colony. May your citizens always be as sensible of this great truth as they have shown themselves at present: may they always make equal efforts to preserve the important connexion, and may you, sir, long live to witness the prosperity, wealth and happiness that will then inevitably characterize the great seaport of the western world.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from governor Claiborne to major-general Thomas.
New Orleans, February 25th, 1815.
I have the honour to enclose you a resolution of the general assembly of Louisiana, from which you will perceive the grateful sense which is entertained of the services rendered to this state, "by our brave brother soldiers from Tennessee, Kentucky and the Mississippi Territory, and their gallant leaders."
It is the pride of America to see her brave defenders guide the plough or front her enemies, as the national interest and safety shall advise. To such citizen soldiers do we chiefly commit the protection of our dearest rights — the defence of our beloved country: and that we may continue to do so, and with confidence, the glorious termination of the campaign in which you have borne a distinguished part, affords a pleasing proof. From the prospect now before us, we may be permitted to hope, sir, that the calm of peace will soon authorize you to rest from the toils of war, and to lead back your patriotic division to their families and friends. The best wishes of the Louisianians will always accompany you and them. The spirit of union, of mutual affection and confidence, which now happily exists between the people of this state and their brothers of the sister states, will, I trust, be forever cherished — it is the surest pledge of our national glory.
I tender to you, sir,
The assurances of my respectful attachment,
Wm. C. C. Claiborne.
Camp Dupre, two miles below New Orleans, Fed. 27th, 1815.
Through the politeness of colonel Fortier I had the honour of receiving yours of the 25th inst. enclosing the resolution of the general assembly of the state of Louisiana, which I have had published to the troops under my command. Next to the pleasure derived from a consciousness of having discharged our duty, must be that which arises from the testimonials of gratitude conferred Upon us by our brothers in arms, who alike with us, shared the dangers of the field, and the toils and hardships of the camp; and for the protection of whom we have left our homes and wives, our children, our friends, and every thing dear to us, and for whom wo cherish that brotherly love and affection which is the cement of the union, and which alone endears man to man and state to state For myself and my division, permit me to tender you and the honourable legislature of the state of Louisiana, an assurance of the grateful sensations we feel for the honour they have conferred upon usj and for myself accept, dear sir, the highest sentiments of esteem from
Yours very respectfully,
Com. Div. Ky. Militia.
Letter from governor Claiborne to major-general Carrol.
New Orleans, February 26th, 1815.
I take great pleasure in communicating to you a resolution of the general assembly of this state, expressive of gratitude and thanks to you and your gallant comrades, “ for the brilliant share they have had in the defence of Louisiana, and the happy harmony they have maintained with the inhabitants and militia of this state.”
Under a leader, young in years, but old in deeds of valour, our brethren of Tennessee hastened to our relief; they arrived in time to participate in all the conflicts with the advancing foe, and greatly to contribute to his final overthrow. It must be pleasing to you, to contemplate the present comparative security of Louisiana. It cost you and your brave associates some toilsome days and watchful nights. But it is not to the gratitude of this state only, that you have acquired a title. The whole union must feel indebted to those whose faithful services have conduced to the preservation of one of its important members.
I tender to you, sir, &c.
Wm. C. C. Claiborne.
Camp Henderson, above New Orleans, March 2, 1815.
I had the honour of receiving your letter of the 24th ult. covering the resolution of the legislature of the state of Louisiana, expressing in a very flattering manner their thanks to the troops of Tennessee, and to me individually, for the share we have taken in the defence of this country.
I hope you will convey to the legislature the grateful sentiments with which I am impressed for the honour done me and the troops whom I command.
I cannot withhold the expressions of gratitude due to the people of New-Orleans for their benevolence in furnishing our suffering soldiers with warm clothing during the inclemency of winter, and at a time when the enemy were before our works.
They have administered to our sick and wounded every friendly attention, and extended to them all the rights of humanity.
The bright beams of peace appear ready to burst around us, and I hope soon to offer to you and the people of this country my congratulations for this glorious event.
If the report of peace be correct, the presence of the Tennessee arms will be no longer necessary, and our soldiers in returning home, will carry with them the impressions of friendship to the citizens of this country, which I hope may be cherished as their intercourse becomes more frequent, and perpetuated as long as the Mississippi continues to flow.
I offer you the salutations of my friendly esteem,
Maj. Gen. Com. Div. Tenn. Militia.
Letter from governor Claiborne to general Adair.
New Orleans, February 25th, 1815.
To a soldier who has done his duty in all the conflicts in which his country has been involved, from the war of independence to the present moment, it must be matter of great exultation to notice the valour and firmness of the children of his old friends — to be convinced that they are the true descendants of the original stock. That the young men of your brigade should have looked up to you in the hour of battle, as their guide and their shield, is only a continuation of that confidence which their fathers had in a chief whose arm had so often, and so successfully, been raised against the foe. The enclosed resolution of the general assembly of Louisiana, will show you the high sense which is entertained in this state of your services, and those of your brothers in arms. Be towards them the vehicle of our sentiments, and receive for yourself, the assurances of my respect, and best wishes for your health and happiness.
Wm. C. C. Claiborne.
Camp Dupre, February 26th, 1815.
I have the honour of acknowledging the receipt of your excellency's note of yesterday (politely handed by colonel Leblanc)inclosing a resolution of the legislature of the state of Louisiana, generously awarding the thanks of the state to the militia from her sister states, who aided in the late successful struggle to expel a powerful invading enemy from her shores.
To a proud American, citizen or soldier, the consciousness of having faithfully discharged his duty to his country, must ever be his highest and most lasting consolation. But when to this is added the approbation, the gratitude of the wisest, the most respectable part of the community, with whom and under whose eye it has been his fortune to act, it will ever be esteemed, not only the highest reward for his services, but the most powerful incentive to his future good conduct.
Accept, sir, for the legislature, my warmest acknowledgment for the honourable mention they have made of the corps to which I belong; and for yourself the esteem and respect so justly due from me for your polite and highly interesting note of communications, and my best wishes for your health and happiness.
Letter from governor Claiborne to general Coffee.
New Orleans, February 25th, 1815.
It affords me the greatest pleasure to enclose you a resolution of the general assembly of Louisiana, acknowledging the faithful and useful services of our western brothers, and tendering their thanks to you among other distinguished officers.
The love of country, which induced you to change the calm of domestic life for the privations incident to a camp, is no less ardent in the brave volunteers whom you lead, than the gratitude which the people of Louisiana bear towards you and them; a heroic band, whose firmness in the field has alike contributed to avert from our settlements the horrors of an Indian warfare, and to the entire defeat and discomfiture of the powerful foe, who so arrogantly menaced the safety of this great and growing city.
Receive for yourself, and be towards your companions in arms, the organ of expressing my highest confidence and sincerest good will.
Wm. C. C. Claiborne,
Camp Coffee, near New Orleans, March 4th, 1815.
I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 25th ult. and the resolution it enclosed of the legislature of Louisiana, presenting the thanks of that honourable body, to their brother soldiers from the west, for “ the share they have taken in the defence of this country, and the harmony they have maintained with the inhabitants and militia of the state.”
To know that we have contributed, in any degree, to the preservation of our common country, is to myself and the brave men under my immediate command the most pleasing reflection. To have received so flattering and distinguished a testimonial of our services adds to the pleasure which that consciousness alone would have afforded.
While we indulge the pleasing emotions that are thus produced, we should be guilty of great injustice, as well to merit as to our own feelings, if we withheld from the commander-in-chief, to whose wisdom and exertions we are so much indebted for our successes, the expression of our highest admiration and applause. To his firmness, his skill, his gallantry — to that confidence and unanimity among all ranks produced by those qualities, we must chiefly ascribe the splendid victories in which we esteem it a happiness and an honour to have borne a part.
We enter with sensibility into the feelings of the legislature, and of your excellency, on occasion of the harmony which has been so happily preserved with the inhabitants and militia of the stateMay the same spirit of brotherhood always unite us when contending against a common enemy in defence of our best rights.
I tender the assurances of ray own and of my companions' thanks, for the distinguished manner in which you and the legislature have been pleased to notice and honour our exertions.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Brig. Gen. T. V. M. G. Men.
Letter from governor Claiborne to colonel Hinds.
New Orleans, February 26th, 1815.
The enclosed vote of thanks of the general assembly of Louisiana, which I now have the honour to transmit you, brings to my recollection the satisfaction I experienced more than twelve years ago, on signing the commission which ushered your military talents into light. At that early period of your life, the highest hopes of your future usefulness were entertained by your friends, and to them and to you it must be alike pleasing to know that these hopes have been fully realized. Your gallant conduct, and that of the corps under your command during the last campaign, was indeed “ the astonishment of one army and the admiration of the other.” It will be gratefully remembered by your country, and has afforded for me an occasion to renew to you the assurances of my respect and esteem.
Wm. C. C. Claiborne,
Cavalry Camp, above New Orleans, February 28th, 1815.
I have have had the honour to receive your communication covering a vote of thanks from the general assembly of the state of Louisiana. The very handsome terms in which your excellency and the general assembly have thought proper to speak of the humble efforts of the corps which it has been my good fortune to command, cannot be otherwise than acceptable to their feelings and flattering to their pride, for which we are more indebted to your excellency's partiality than to any extraordinary merit of our own, and which we are well aware consists principally in a great share of zeal for our country's service, kindled into action by the presence of a base and brutal invader. That the same unity of sentiment which gave force to our arms may continue, and that the people of Louisiana may long enjoy the substantial benefits resulting from the late most glorious conflict, hi which they so honourably shared, is confidently to be expected and devoutly ta be wished.
Accept, sir, for yourself, and through your excellency I tender the thanks of the corps I have the honour to command, for the honourable testimony borne of its services, and at the same time assurances of my individual respect and esteem.
Lieut. Col. Com. Vol. Cavalry.
Letter from general John Lambert to major general Jackson.
February 8th, 1815.
I am just favoured with your letter of the 4th. I can assure you that every American prisoner that was present when I embarked on board the Tonnant has been sent into the Rigolets, and sir A. Cochrane has taken steps for the arrival of an equivalent number to the British prisoners now with you.
Under any circumstances I positively promise that your liberality shall not be in any way but reciprocal on my part, and I will not lose sight for a moment of hastening, if it is possible, the arrival of American prisoners, especially those who were taken on the 14th December last.
I am obliged to you for the allowing of two British officers to return on parole, and what you intimate on the subject shall be assented to.
What I said respecting the slaves regard those that I could not prevent coming to us when I was on shore. I am not at the anchorage where Mr. Livingston and Mr. White have been received; and indeed I have nothing to say to it. I did all I could to persuade them to return at the time, but not one was willing, as will be testified by Mr. Celestin, a proprietor whom 1 had detained until the British forces had evacuated their last position: this gentleman saw the slaves that were present, and did all he could to urge them to go back.
I am, sir, your very obedient servant,
Letter from admiral Cochrane to general Jackson,
H. B. M. ship Tonnant, off Mobile Bay, 12th February, 1815.
In consequence of the style which captain Patterson thought proper to adopt in a letter that he addressed to me on the 23d January (a copy of which I beg leave to inclose) with some remarks upon the margin, I find myself precluded from making him any reply thereto, or of holding with that officer any further correspondence.
But to prevent our respective prisoners suffering any unnecessary detention, I do myself the honour to communicate to you, that in order to fulfil the agreement for an exchange of prisoners, entered into by major Smith (aid-de-camp to major general Lambert) upon the 27th ultimo, I sent his majesty's ship Nymphe to the Havanna, to receive from his majesty's ship Ramilies one hundred of the American prisoners taken in the gun-vessels, which she had carried to sea.
These, with five seamen, who, for the purpose of being examined in the vice-admiralty court respecting the capture of the gun-vessels, I have been obliged to send to Bermuda, but who are to be returned the moment the legal forms have been complied with, will complete the number of American prisoners which have to be accounted for by the British forces under the agreement of the I7th ultimo, and they shall be forwarded to you without any delay so soon as they arrive in the squadron.
As it has been found very inconvenient, the sending of vessels to the Rigolets (those last sent not having yet returned, and are reported to be on shore) colonel Livingston and myself have agreed that the prisoners expected in the Nymphe shall proceed to the mouth of the Mississippi, and be delivered to the officer* commanding at Plaquemines.
Having by this arrangement fulfilled the stipulations of our before-mentioned treaty, in which we agreed to the restoration of all the prisoners that our forces had made before we received from you any British prisoners, it is but just that you should follow the same principle with respect to the prisoners who have fallen into our hands by the surrender of Fort Bowyer, all of whom major general Lambert and myself are ready to exchange as they stand upon the lists (copies of which are inclosed) for such British prisoners as you may cause to be delivered at the month of the Mississippi, after the first account has been finally settled. And on my part, I will engage to send to the same place an equivalent of American prisoners, so soon as I am informed of the number and qualities of the British prisoners received.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from admiral Cochrane to general Jackson.
H. B. M ship Tonnant, off Mobile Bay, 12th February, 1815.
I have exceeding satisfaction in sending to you a copy of a bulletin that I have this moment received from Jamaica, proclaiming that a treaty of peace was signed between our respective plenipotentiaries at Ghent, on the 24th December, 1814, upon which I beg leave to offer you my sincere congratulations.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from general John Lambert to general Jackson.
Head-Quarters, British Army, February 19th, 1815.
I am just informed by admiral Malcolm that the American prisoners made on the 14th of December are arrived in the fleet, and, that they will sail immediately for the Mississippi, as it was settled with colonel Livingston, aid-de-camp.
1 confidently trust there will be now no impediment to an equal number of British prisoners being immediately returned to us.
I beg leave to congratulate you on the prospect of peace, and hope I shall soon have to communicate to you the notice of the ratification being exchanged.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to admiral Cochrane,
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, New Orleans,
February 20th, 1815.
I am honoured by your letter of the 12th instant, by the return of my flap;, inclosing a copy of commodore Patterson’s to you, with some marginal strictures on its contents. The navy and military departments in our service being totally independent, I am not permitted to defend, still less to censure the conduct or correspondence of that officer at the head of the former; his distinguished merit, and general correctness of conduct, make it presumable that he will be able to justify his proceedings to the government, to whom alone he is accountable.
On the subject of the exchange, your assurance that the one hundred men sent off in the Ramilies, as well as the five detained for the condemnation of the gun-boats, will be delivered on their return, is satisfactory to myself and to commodore Patterson; and I now despatch all the prisoners in a situation to be removed as by the enclosed list: the residue, to the amount of
————— now at Natchez, are sent for, and will be forwarded to the Balize as soon as they shall arrive.
You will perceive by this, sir, that I perfectly acquiesce in the propriety of your remark, that justice requires me to follow the example of confidence given by yourself and general Lambert, in the delivery of the prisoners belonging to my army previous to the receipt of those taken from you, a confidence always mutually due from enemies who respect each other, and peculiarly proper between those who, in the probable course of events, may soon cease to be such.
There is another subject, on which a passage in general Lambert's last letter renders it necessary for me to address you; I mean that of the negroe slaves belonging to several inhabitants on the Mississippi, now in your fleet. I had written to general Lambert on this head two successive letters, in consequence of his informing me that these persons would be delivered to their masters on their application. To the first I received no answer, to the last I am informed that general Lambert “ has nothing to do with it.” Mr. White, to whom an order was given to receive such as were willing to return to their masters, having reported to me that he found several who were ready to accompany him, but that he was not permitted to take them; I am now obliged, sir, explicitly to ask whether the properly thus taken is intended to be restored, and if it be, that a time and place may be appointed for its delivery.
The prisoners from Natchez will arrive in less than ten days; they will immediately sail for the Balize, and it is hoped that the prisoners taken at fort Bowyer may meet them there, to be conveyed back in the same vessels.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to admiral Cochrane.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, New Orleans,
February 21th, 1815.
I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 13th instant. It came to hand only this day by the way of the Balize, though purporting to have been sent by my aid-de-camp, Mr. Livingston, who arrived two days since from your fleet, and who, from a conversation he had with you, was disappointed in not finding it inclosed in the despatch he brought.
I sincerely reciprocate your congratulations on the important event you announced to me, that a treaty of peace has been signed between our two countries. This communication, connected with an expression in the bulletin you inclose, that captain Stirling of his majesty's ship Brazen was charged with despatches announcing the termination of hostilities between Great Britain and America, naturally leads to an inquiry, how far you consider this event as authorizing and requiring a cessation of hostilities between the military and naval forces of Great Britain and those of the United States in this district.
The prisoners in my possession at this place will sail for the Balize at eight o'clock on the morning of to-morrow. Those at Natchez, upwards of a hundred in number, will be forwarded to the same place as soon as they arrive here. They have been ordered down, and are expected shortly.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from brigadier general Winchester to the secretary at War.
Mobile, February 17th, 1815.
It becomes my duty to communicate to you the unpleasant news of the loss of Fort Bowyer. It was closely invested by land, as well as water, on the 8th inst. On the 10th and llth, passed a detachment over the bay with a view to divert the enemy from his object: but it arrived about twenty-four hours too late, though time enough to capture one of the enemy's barges with seventeen seamen, who say the garrison capitulated on the 12th; that the besiegers had advanced their works on the land side to within certain musket shot of the fort; that the loss on either side in killed is in-considerable. I am in possession of no other account but that which comes from the prisoners. About thirty of the enemy's vessels, besides boats and barges, are lying within the bar, and above Mobile Point, and several ships of the line on the south and west of Dauphin island. The wind is fair, and I expect the honour of seeing them here every night; if I do, I have great confidence my next will be on a pleasanter subject.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Brig. Gen. Com. E. Sec. 7th Mil. Dis.
P. S. The garrison consisted of about three hundred and sixty men, including officers. Three small schooners, in which the detachment was transported over the bay, were
captured by the enemy's barges after the troops had landed.
Letter from lieutenant colonel Lawrence to general Jackson.
Fort Bowyer, February 12th, 1815.
Imperious necessity has compelled me to enter into articles of capitulation with major general John Lambert, commanding tus Britannic majesty's forces in front of Fort Bowyer, a copy of which I forward you for the purpose of effecting an immediate exchange of prisoners. Nothing but the want of provisions, and finding myself completely surrounded by thousands—batteries erected on the sand-mounds which completely commanded the fort—and the enemy having advanced, by regular approaches, within thirty yards of the ditches, and the utter impossibility of getting any assistance or supplies, would have induced me to adopt this measure. Feeling confident, and it being the unanimous opinion of the officers, that we could not retain the post, and that the lives of many valuable officers and soldiers would have been uselessly sacrificed, I thought it most desirable to adopt this plan. A full and correct statement will be furnished you as early as possible.
Captain Chamberlin, who bears this to E. Livingston, Esq. will relate to him every particular, which will, I hope, be satisfactory.
I am, with respect, &c.
Lieut. Col. Com'g.
articles of capitulation
Agreed upon between lieutenant colonel Lawrence and major general Lambert for the surrender of Fort Bowyer, on the Mobile Point, 11th February, 1815.
- That the fort shall be surrendered to the arms of his Britannic majesty in its existing state as to the works, ordnance, ammunition, and every species of military stores.
- That the garrison shall be considered as prisoners of war; the troops marching out with their colours flying and drums beating, and ground their arms on the glacis — the officers retaining their swords, and the whole to be embarked in such ships as the British naval commander in chief shall appoint.
- All private property to be respected.
- That a communication shall be made immediately of the same to the commanding officer of the 7th military district of the United States, and every endeavour made to effect an early exchange of prisoners.
- That the garrison of the United States remain in the fort until twelve o'clock to-morrow, a British guard being put in possession of the hmer gate at three o'clock to-day, the body of the guard remaining on the glacis, and that the British flag be hoisted at the same time — an officer of each service remaining at the headquarters of each commander until the fulfilment of these articles.
Head-Quarters, Western Section, 7th Military District. Assistant Adjutant-General's Office, New Orleans, April 7th, 1815.
At the request of lieutenant-colonel William Lawrence, of the 2d regiment United States' infantry, a court of inquiry was ordered on the 25th ultimo to assemble in this city, to inquire into the conduct of the lieutenant-colonel touching the defence and surrender of fort Bowyer, and to give an opinion thereon. The court, whereof lieutenant colonel Arbuckle was president, major Peyre atid captain Humphrey members, commenced its proceedings on the 28th March last, and continued by adjournment from day to day up to the 5th instant, when it delivered the following opinion:
"The court of inquiry, after mature deliberation, are of opinion that fort Bowyer was defended in the best manner that the circumstances of the siege admitted of—that the conduct of colonel Lawrence on that occasion was honourable and becoming a good officer—that the fort, when it was surrendered, was in a situation which rendered a longer defence impracticable, and that no blame ought to attach, either to colonel Lawrence or to the. garrison, for having surrendered fort Bowyer at the time they did."
The major-general feels much pleasure in observing, that the whole of the testimony in this case, and particularly that of major Woodruff of the 3d infantry, lieutenant Alexis of the navy, and major Chamberlain and captain Brownlow of the 2d infantry, (the two former as to the position and strength of fort Bowyer, and the two latter as to the approaches of the enemy and the defence of the fort) fully support the opinion of the court of inquiry in favour of lieutenant-colonel Lawrence.
The court of inquiry, whereof lieutenant-colonel Arbuckle is president, is dissolved.
E. P. Gaines,
Address of general Jackson to the Soldiers and Citizens at
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, New Orleans,
19th February, 1815.
Fellow-citizens and soldiers,
The flag-vessel which was sent to the enemy's fleet has returned, and brings with it intelligence, extracted from a London paper, that on the 24th of December articles of peace were signed at Ghent, by the American commissioners and those of his Britannic majesty.
We must not be thrown into false security by hopes that may be delusive. It is by holding out such that an artful and insidious enemy too often seeks to accomplish what the utmost exertions of his strength will not enable him to effect. To place you off your guard and attack you by surprise, is the natural expedient of one who, having experienced the superiority of your arms, still hopes to overcome you by stratagem?Though young in the "trade" of war, it is not by such artifices that he will deceive us. Peace, whenever it shall be
re-established on fair and honourable terms, is an event in which both nations ought to rejoice; but whether the articles which are said to have been signed for its restoration will be approved by those whose province it is to give to them their final confirmation, is yet uncertain. Until they shall be ratified by the prince regent and the president of the United States, peace, though so much desired, may be still distant. When that shall be done, the happy intelligence will be publicly and speedily announced. In the mean time, every motive that can operate on men who love their countiy, and are determined not to lose it, calls upon us for increased vigilance and exertion.
If peace be near at hand, the days of our watchfulness, of our toils, and our privations, will be proportionably few; if it be distant, we shall at any rate hasten its arrival, by being constantly and every where prepared for war.
Whatever be the designs of the enemy, we must be ready to meet them. Should they have the temerity to assail us again, we will once more drive him ignominiously from our shore; if he places his hopes of success on stratagem, our watchfulness will disappoint him; if on an exertion of his strength, we have proved how successfully that can be resisted.
It is true fort Bowyer has fallen, but it must and will be speedily regained. We will expel the invader from every spot on our soil, and teach him, if he hopes for conquest, how vain it is to seek it in a land of freedom.
Letter from general Keane to general Jackson.
H. B. M. ship Tonnant off Mobile,
February 8th, 1815.
Major-general Keane presents his best respects to general Jackson, and feels particularly thankful for the kindness he has experienced from him through the medium of colonel Livingston — He is still further obliged for general Jackson's kind wishes for his recovery.
Letter from general Jackson to the secretary at war.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, New Orleans,
17th February, 1815.
I have the honour to inclose you a copy of major Overton's report of the attack on fort St. Philip, and of the manner in which it was defended.
The conduct of this officcr, and of those who acted under him, merits, I think, great praise. They nailed their own colours to the standard, and placed those of the enemy underneath them, determined never to surrender the post.
The flag-vessel which I sent to the enemy's fleet a fortnight ago, for the purpose of ascertaining the causes that had prevented the delivery of a hundred of our seamen (taken on board the gunboats) in violation of the articles entered into for the exchange of prisoners, has not yet returned, and I am apprehensive is detained by the enemy to prevent the discovery of some designs he may still hope to execute. Whatever their views may be, I am persuaded they will be disappointed in them.
A copy of the articles agreed upon for the exchange I herewith send you, and I beg leave to accompany it with the assurance of my determination, to restore no more of the British prisoners until those articles are complied with by the British commanders.
Major-general Keane, having lost his sword in the action of the 8th January, and having expressed a great desire to regain it, valuing it as the present of an esteemed friend, I thought proper to have it restored to him; thinking it more honourable to the American character to return it, after the expression of those wishes, than to retain it as a trophy of victory. I believe, however, it is a singular instance of a British general soliciting the restoration of his sword fairly lost in battle.
Some entire Congreve-rockets have been found, and a rest from Antioch they are fired, which it is my intention to forward to the seat of government whenever a proper opportunity shall offer, as also the instruments of the British band of music, and their quarter flag.
General Keane's trumpet, as well as that which was used on the right column of the enemy, were taken in the action of the 8th January. Those instruments are in the possession of general Coffee's brigade, where I hope they will be permitted to remain.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson.
Head-Quarters Isle Dauphine, February 27th, 1815.
I have this moment received your letter, dated the 20th inst. I have taken every step to biing the exchange to a speedy conclusion.
On the subject of the concluding paragraph, I have only to remark, that honourable and feeling conduct which has characterized every transaction in which I have had the honour to be concerned in with you.
You may rely upon it, I shall take no retrospective view of the conduct of any of the men returned, and shall find reasons in discountenancing an inquiry, should it be brought before me, or come to my knowledge through any other channel.
With regard to the negroes that have left their masters and are with this force, any proprietor or person deputed, that chooses to present himself to me will be received, and every facility afforded him to communicate with those people; and I shall be very happy if they can be persuaded all to return, but to compel them is what I cannot do.
With respect (which I inclose) to an address from major-general Villeré to the commandant of this force, I am at a loss to understand the purport. The commissary-general's orders are to purchase cattle wherever he can meet with them. Amongst receipts in that neighbourhood for beasts procured, is that for those belonging to the major-general. I should have been glad to have known the major-general's sentiments previous, as I certainly should not have troubled myself about his concerns, or endeavoured to render as little painful as I was able, not living in his house, the unavoidable circumstances attending the immediate theatre of war towards his son whom he had left unprotected.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, New Orleans,
March 4th, 1815.
gratified to find by the letter with which you have honoured me, that my confidence in your humanity and delicacy of conduct with respect to the prisoners was not misplaced. My request was merely dictated by the plainest principles of justice. It is your ready, frank, and obliging compliance, that merits the flattering epithet you have been pleased to bestow on my conduct.
I am extremely sorry that the very high winds, which have prevailed ever since I sent for the British prisoners to Natchez, have prevented their arrival at this place. Vessels are ready to receive and carry them to the Balize the instant they shall arrive.
Having been just informed that Mr. Shields, who commanded a lanch on Lake Borgne, has been made prisoner, I hope he may be sent in on parole for exchange.
The prisoners taken from your advanced post at Mobile Point are directed to be sent down to fort
Bowyer, to be delivered to you, and included in the general exchange.
I am sorry that I cannot advise you, sir, of the ratification of the treaty signed at Ghent. At the date of my last advices it had not arrived at the seat of government.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert.
Head-Quarters, 6th March, 1815.
just received intelligence from Washington which leaves little doubt in my mind that the treaty signed at Ghent between the United States and Great Britain has been ratified by the president and senate of the United States, but by some unaccountable accident a despatch on another subject has been substituted for the one intended to give me an official notice of this event. The one I have received however, is accompanied by an order from the postmaster-general directing his deputies to forward the express carrying intelligence of the recent peace. Of this order I enclose a copy. And from other sources, to which I give credit, I learn that the same express brought official notice of the treaty to the governor of Tennessee. I have deemed it a duty, without loss of time, to communicate the exact state of those circumstances, that you might determine whether they would not justify you in agreeing, by a cessation of all hostilities, to anticipate the happy return of peace between our two nations, which the first direct intelligence must bring to us in an official form. The prisoners from Natchez, after having been long detained by adverse winds, are now within a short distance of the city, and will certainly proceed to-morrow morning to the Balize, to be delivered to your officer according to my promise.
I pray you, with the assurance of high respect, to receive that of the satisfaction I feel in reflecting that our correspondence, begun as commanders of hostile armies, should terminate as officers of nations in amity.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from major Woodruff to admiral Cochrane.
Dauphine Island, March 17th, 1815.
instructed by his excellency major-general Andrew Jackson, commanding the United States 7th military district, to inform you of his having received notification of a treaty of peace between the United States of America and the government of Great Britain having been signed and exchanged at the city of Washington on the 17th February, 1815. By the first article of that treaty, "all territory, places and possessions whatsoever, taken by either party from the other during the war, or which may be taken after the signing of this treaty, excepting only the islands herein after mentioned shall be restored without delay, and without carrying any distinction, or carrying away any of the artillery, or other public property, originally captured in the said forts or places, and which shall remain therein upon the exchange of the ratifications of this treaty, or any slaves or other private property." I am also commanded by his excellency, major-general Andrew Jackson, to receive such forts, garrisons, artillery, munitions of war, or other property, as may be embraced by said first
article. You will please therefore to make such arrangements as may be most convenient for carrying into effect the said first article of said treaty.
Such slaves as may be within your control, belonging to any inhabitant or citizen of the United States, I am also instructed to receive, to the end that their owners may again obtain possession of them.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Lambert to major Woodruff.
Dauphine Island, March 17th, 1815.
answer to yours of this day's date, communicating to me that his excellency major-general Jackson had received notification of a treaty of peace between the United States of America and the government of Great Britain having been signed and exchanged at the city of Washington on the 17th February, 1815, and requiring you to carry into execution, on the part of the American government, the fulfilment of the first article of the treaty, I have to request that you will inform his excellency that immediately I receive the same from the person charged by the British government to transmit it to all its naval and military commanders serving in America, I shall give him immediate notice of it and. be prepared to fulfil the treaty in every respect.
I have the honour to be. &c.
Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson.
Isle Dauphine, March 19th, 1815
Since I had the pleasure of writing to you yesterday, I am informed that every thing will be embarked (weather permitting) by the 25th. I have, in consequence, written to major-general M‘Intosh, to inform him that the commandant of fort Bowyer has orders to deliver it up agreeable to the first article of the treaty of peace on that day.
The time of and preparations for a long voyage may detain the troops here a few days longer, but no exertion will be wanting to embark the whole as soon as possible.
As I may not have another opportunity of addressing you, permit me to avail myself of the present to wish you health and happiness, and to express my regret that circumstances will not allow me to assure you personally of the same.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from general Lambert to major Woodruff.
March 20th, 1815.
I answer to that part of your letter which touches upon the negroes who have come into the British force previous to the ratification of the peace, that is, on the 18th February last, I do not feel myself authorized to deliver them up under the
treaty, without their consent.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to James Monroe, secretary of war. Head-Quarters, 7th military district,
New Orleans, 24th February, 1815.
flag-vessel which I sent to the enemy's fleet returned a few days ago, with assurances from admiral Cochrane, that the American prisoners taken in the gun-boats and sent to Jamaica, shall be returned as soon as practicable. The Nymphe has been despatched for them.
Through the same channel 1 received the sad intelligence of the surrender effort Bowyer: this is an event which I little expected to happen, but after the most gallant resistance; that it should have taken place, without even a fire from the enemy's batteries is as astonishing as it is mortifying.
In consequence of this unfortunate affair, an addition of three hundred and sixty-six has been made to the list of American prisoners; to redeem these and the seamen, I have, in conformity with propositions held out by admiral Cochrane, forwarded to the mouth of the Mississippi upwards of four hundred British prisoners; others will be sent, to complete the exchange, as soon as they arrive from Natchez, to which place I had found it expedient to order them.
Major Blue, who had been ordered by general Winchester to the relief of fort Bowyer, succeeded in carrying one of the enemy's picquets, consisting of seventeen, but was too late to effect the whole purpose for which he had been detached — the fort having capitulated twenty-four hours before his arrival. I learn from the bearer of my last despatches to the enemy's fleet, who was detained during the operations against fort Bowyer, that his loss on that occasion, by the fire from the garrison was between twenty and forty.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to major-general Lambert.
Head-Quarters, 7th military district,
New Orleans, 26th February, 1815.
I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 19th inst.
In conformity with arrangements entered into with admiral Cochrane by my aid-de-camp, Mr. Livingston, I despatched from this place on the 22nd inst. four hundred British prisoners to be delivered at the mouth of the Mississippi, to the officer appointed on the part of his B. M. to receive them. Others will be sent to complete the exchange, as soon as they arrive from Natchez.
It is expected that the American prisoners made at fort Bowyer will be forwarded to the same point, as soon as practicable, and in time to return by the vessels that will convey the British prisoners now on their way from Natchez.
I take the liberty to enclose you copies of two letters, which I did myself the honour to address to admiral Cochrane on the 20th and 21st inst. in doing which you will perceive both my motive and my object.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to major-general Lambert.
Head-Quarters, 7h military district, March 7th, 1815.
In consequence of the intimation contained in your formal letters, that every facility will be given to the proprietors of slaves now with your forces, to induce them to return, I have given permission to M. M. Jumonville, Lanergue, Lacoste, Forstall, Philipan, Dolphin, Velez and Quarron to pass under a flag in the schooner Louisa, captain Pierre Etienne, to the fleet, for the purpose of seeing and reclaiming their slaves, to whom I pray that they (the slaves) may be delivered.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Head-Quarters, 7th military district, adjutant-general's office,
New Orleans, 8th March, 1815.
Although the commanding general has not received official advice that the state of war has ceased by the ratification of the treaty of peace between the United States and Great Britain, he has persuasive evidence of the fact, and credits it, at the risk of being misguided by his wishes. Under this impression, his first act is to release from actual service the body of the militia of this state, who have taken the field in obedience to the orders for a levy en masse. In discharging them from the noble duty which they were called to perform, the general does justice to the alacrity with which they have in general obeyed the call — to the enthusiasm which animated them on the first invasion of the enemy, and the unanimity and patriotism which disappointed his insolent hopes. He thanks them, in the name of their common country, for the noble defence they have made, and he congratulates them in his own, on the consequences it has produced. Louisiana, though not called on for any exertion in assuming her independence, has shown, by her courage in its support, that she knows how to prize the inestimable blessing; her sons have not only ensured safely, but have acquired even a greater good — national reputation. Preserve this as the best reward of your exertions, and hand it down untarnished, together with your example, to your posterity. Let no designing men induce you to destroy it, by exciting jealousies of your best friends, or divisions among yourselves — by preaching party spirit in peace, insubordination in war, injustice to your brave companions in arms, blindness to your own interests and to the true character of those enemies of your peace. Guard against these evils as you hope to enjoy the blessings you have so bravely won; and before you yield to such perfidious counsels, examine scrupulously whether those from whom they proceed, deserve your confidence, by any exertion they have made in your defence. A zealous wish for the prosperity of the interesting country, in whose defence he has been, by the blessing of heaven, instrumental, has induced the commanding general to give this admonitory caution, which those who court popularity, may tell you is unnecessary. He, however, values no popularity but that which arises from a faithful discharge of duty. In performing it, his object has been to secure your happiness; and he will always consider it as one of the most fortunate incidents in his life, to have contributed, by his exertions, to the prosperity of your country.
Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, New Orleans,
New Orleans, March 13th, 1815.
It is with great satisfaction that I inform you of my having received this day official advice of the ratification and interchange of the treaty of peace between the United States and Great Britain.
A copy of the treaty and of the ratification will be presented to you by major Woodruff, of the 3d infantry, who will express you more fully than I can in the compass of a letter, those sentiments which the new state of things between the two nations inspire.
I have, by special direction of the secretary of war, ordered an immediate cessation of hostilities, and by the like order make this communication to you.
Mr. Livingston is empowered to make such arrangements for the restoration required by the first article of the treaty, and to receive all places, now in your possession, as well as the slaves mentioned in your former letters, and all public property, conformably to the provisions of the said treaty.
Any facility or accommodation that may be required for your supplies, or the comforts of your sick or wounded in my power, will be given with the greatest pleasure.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Jackson to major Woodruff.
New Orleans, March 13th, 1815.
Major Woodruff will inform captain Newman at Petites Coquilles of the restoration of peace, and direct him to permit the British flag, now waiting at that place, to come up to the city. He will also instruct captain Newman that all vessels are, in future, to be permitted to pass and repass freely.
He will then proceed to the British fleet and deliver the despatches with which he is charged to the commander-in-chief. He will receive the surrender of the posts and public property agreeable to the treaty, and require the delivery of slaves taken from hence.
General M‘Intosh will furnish the troops necessary for the occupation of the fort on his requisition.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, Adjutant-general's Office,
New Orleans, March 13, 1815.
The commanding general, with the most lively emotions of joy, and of gratitude to Heaven, announces to the troops under his command, that a treaty of peace between the United States and Great Britain was ratified and exchanged at Washington, on the 17th of February last.
In consequence whereof, he loses not an instant in revoking and annulling the general order issued on the 15th day of December last, proclaiming martial law, which is hereby revoked, annulled, and countermanded; and he orders all hostilities immediately to cease against the troops and subjects of the united kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
And in order that the general joy attending this event may extend to all manner of persons, the commanding general proclaims and orders a pardon for all military offences heretofore committed in this district, and orders that all persons in confinement, under such charges, be immediately discharged.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, Adjutant-General's Office,
Orleans, March 13, 1815.
The commanding general communicates with great satisfaction to the troops under his command, the following testimonial of the just sense with the president of the United States entertains of their patriotism, valour, and good conduct. He congratulates them particularly on their being able to receive his applause with a consciousness of having deserved it; and takes a singular pleasure in conveying tp the brave citizens of this state, who took up arms in its defence, the assurance that their exertions are appreciated as they deserve by the executive of the United States.
"The president requests that you will express to the troops, who have acted under you, the very favourable sentiments which he entertains of their conduct. The alacrity with which they repaired to the standard of their country, exposed, in many instances, to distressing privations; the patience with which they have borne the fatigues of the campaign, and their bravery in action, have been seen by him with great satisfaction. To our newly adopted fellow citizens of Louisiana, you will give assurance of his great sensibility to the decided and honourable proof which they have given of their attachment and devotion to the union, and of the manly support of the rights of their country.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District,
New Orleans, March 14th, 1815.
The major-general is at length enabled to perform the pleasing task of restoring to Tennessee, Kentucky, Louisiana and the territory of the Mississippi, the brave troops who have acted such a distinguished part in the war which has just terminated. In restoring these brave men to their homes, much exertion is expected of, and great responsibility held on the commanding officers of the different corps. It is required of major-generals Carroll and Thomas, and brigadier-general Coffee, to march their commands without unnecessary delay to their respective states, and have them mustered for payment and discharged. The troops from the Mississippi territory and state of Louisiana, both militia and volunteers, will be immediately mustered out of service by major Davis, assistant-inspector-general, paid and discharged. Every arrangement will be made through the department of war, to have the troops of Tennessee and Kentucky paid off the soonest possible after their return. All public arms, accoutrements, camp equipage, and military stores of every description, now in the possession of the different troops herein directed to be discharged, will be immediately deposited with the deputy-commissary of ordnance and quarter-master-general, except such camp equipage as is absolutely necessary for the troops on their return march, which must be delivered to some public agent on their dismissal. The quarter-master-general is hereby ordered to furnish transportation for all invalids belonging to the different corps. Those who cannot be moved without imminent danger of their lives, mugt be well accommodated, and supplied with hospital stores, and a sufficient number of surgeons retained to attend them. The contractor will furnish provisions for the troops herein named, on their return march, on the requisition of the respective commanding officers; who, it is expected, will use every care and attention that no depredations are committed on private property; and are held personally responsible to remunerate, agreeably to the regulations of the war department, all damages on property injured or destroyed by their commands
The major-general has again the satisfaction of announcing the approbation of the president of the United States to the conduct of the troops under his command, expressed in flattering terms through the honourable the secretary at war.
In parting with those brave men, whose destinies have been so long united with his own, and in whose labours and glories it is his happiness and his boast to have participated, the commanding general can neither suppress his feelings nor give utterance to them as he ought. In what terms can he bestow suitable praise on merit so extraordinary, so unparailelledl Let him in one burst of joy, gratitude and exultation exclaim — "these are the saviours of their country — these the patriot soldiers who triumphed over the invincibles of Wellington, and conquered the conquerors of Europe!" With what patience did you submit to privations — with what fortitude did you endure fatigue — what valour did you display in the day of battle! You have secured to America a proud name among the nations of the earth — a glory which will never perish.
Possessing those dispositions, which equally adorn the citizen and the soldier, the expectations of your country will be met in peace as her wishes have been gratified in war. Go then, my brave companions, to your homes; to those tender connexions and those blissful scenes which render life so dear — full of honour, and crowned with laurels which will never fade. With what happiness will you not, when participating in the bosoms of your families the enjoyment of peaceful life, look back to the toils you have borne — to the dangers you have encountered? How will all your past exposures be converted into sources of inexpressible delight? Who, that never experienced your sufferings, will be able to appreciate your joys? The man who slumbered ingloriously at home, during your painful marches, your nights of watchfulness and your days of toil, will envy you the happiness which these recollections will afford — still more will he envy the gratitude of that country which you have so eminently contributed to save.
Continue, fellow soldiers, on your passage to your several destinations, to preserve that subordination, that dignified and manly deportment which have so ennobled your character.
While the commanding-general is thus giving indulgence to his feeling towards those brave companions who accompanied him through difficulties and danger, he cannot permit the names of Blount, and Shelby, and Holmes, to pass unnoticed. With what a generous ardour of patriotism have these distinguished governors contributed all their exertions to provide the means of victory! The memory of these exertions, and of the success with which they were attained, will be to them a reward more grateful than any which the pomp of title or the splendour of wealth can bestow.
What a happiness it is to the commanding-general that, while danger was before us, he was, on no occasion, compelled to use, towards his companions in arms, either severity or rebuke. If, after the enemy had retired, improper pasbions began to show their empire in a few unworthy bosoms, and rendered a resort to energetic measures necessary for their suppression, the commanding-general has not confounded the innocent with the guilty, — the seduced with the seducers. Towards you, fellow-soldiers, the most cneering recollections exist, blended, alas! with regret, that disease and war should have ravished from us so many worthy companions. But the memory of the cause in which they perished, and of the virtues which animated them while living, must occupy the place where sorrow would claim to dwell.
Farewell, fellow-soldiers. The expression of your general's thanks is feeble; but the gratitude of a country of freemen is yours — yours the applause of an admiring world.
TREATY OF PEACE.
james madison, president of the united states,
To all and singular to whom these presents shall come, greeting:
Whereas a treaty of peace and amity between the United States of America and his Britannic majesty was signed at Ghent, on the twenty-fourth day of December, one thousand eight hundred and fourteen, by plenipotentiaries respectively appointed for that purpose; and the said treaty having been, by and with the advice and consent of the senate of the United States, duly accepted ratified and confirmed, on the seventeenth day of February, one thousand eight hundred and fifteen; and ratified copies thereof having been exchanged agreeably to the tenor of the said treaty which is in the words following, to wit:
treaty of peace and amity between his britannic majesty and the united states of america.
His Britannic majesty and the United States of America, desirous of terminating the war which has unhappily subsisted between the two countries, and of restoring, upon principles of perfect reciprocity, peace, friendship, and good understanding between them, have, for that purpose, appointed their respective plenipotentiaries, that is to say: his Britannic majesty, on his part, has appointed the right honourable James lord Gambler, late admiral of the white, now admiral of the red squadron of his majesty's fleet, Henry Goulbourn, esq. member of the imperial parliament, and under secretary of state, and William Adams, esq. doctor of civil laws: — and the president of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the senate thereof, has appointed John Quincy Adams, James A. Bayard, Henry Clay, Jonathan Russel, and Albert Gallatin, citizens of the United States, who, after a reciprocal communication of their respective full powers, have agreed upon the following articles:
Art. i. — There shall be a firm and universal peace between his Britannic majesty and the United States, and between their respective countries, territories, cities, towns and people, of every degree, without exception of places or persons. All hostilities, both by sea and land, shall cease as soon as this treaty has been ratified by both parties, as hereinafter mentioned. All territories, places, and possessions whatsoever, taken from either party by the other, during the war, or which may be taken after the signing of this treaty, excepting only the islands hereinafter mentioned, shall be restored without delay, and without causing any destruction, or carrying away any of the artillery or other public property originally captured in the said forts or places, and which shall remain therein, upon the exchange of the ratifications of this treaty, or any slaves or other private property, and all archives, records, deeds, and papers, either of a public nature, or belonging to private persons, which, in the course of the war, may have fallen into the hands of the officers of either party, shall be, as far as may be practicable, forthwith restored and delivered to the proper authorities and persons to whom they respectively belong. Such of the islands in the bay of Passamaquoddy as are claimed by both parties, shall remam in the possession of the party in whose occupation they maybe at the time of the exchange of the ratifications of this treaty, until the decision respecting the title to the said islands shall have been made, in conformity with the fourth article of this treaty. No disposition made by this treaty, as to such possession of the islands and territories claimed by both parties, shall, in any manner whatever, be construed to affect the right of either.
Art. ii. — Immediately after the ratification of this treaty by both parties, as hereinafter mentioned, orders shall be sent to the armies, squadrons, officers, subjects and citizens of the two powers to cease from all hostilities: and to prevent all causes of complaint which might arise on account of the prizes which may be taken at sea after the ratifications of this treaty, it is reciprocally agreed, that all vessels and effects which may be taken after the space of twelve days from the said ratifications, upon all parts of the coast of North America, from the latitude of twenty-three degrees north, to the latitude of fifty degrees north, as far eastward in the Atlantic ocean, as the thirty-sixth degree of west longitude from the meridian of Greenwich, shall be restored on each side: That the time shall be thirty days in all other parts of the Atlantic ocean, north of the equinoxial line or equator, and the same time for the British and Irish channels, for the gulf of Mexico, and all parts of the West Indies: forty days for the North Seas, for the Baltic, and for all parts of the Mediterranean, Sixty days for the Atlantic ocean south of the equator as far as the latitude of the Cape of Good Hope: ninety days for every part of the world south of the equator: and one hundred and twenty days for all other parts of the world, without exception.
Art. iii. — All prisoners of war taken on either side, as well by land as by sea, shall be restored as soon as practicable after the ratification of this treaty, as hereinafter mentioned, on their paying the debts which they may have contracted during their captivity. The two contracting parties respectively engage to discharge, in specie, the advances which may have been made by the other, for the sustenance and maintenance of such prisoners.
Art. iv. — Whereas it was stipulated by the second article in the treaty of peace of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three, between his Britannic majesty aafd the United States of America, that the boundary of the United States should comprehend all islands within twenty leagues of any part of the shores of the United States, and lying between lines to be drawn due east from the points where the aforesaid boundaries between Nova-Scotia, on the one part, and East Florida on the other, shall respectively touch the Bay of Fundy, and the Atlantic ocean, excepting such islands as now are, or heretofore have been within the limits of Nova-Scotia: and whereas the several islands in the Bay of Passamaq noddy, which is part of the Bay of Fundy, and the island of Grand Menan, in the said Bay of Fundy, are claimed by the United Stales as being comprehended within their aforesaid boundaries, which said islands are claimed as belonging to his Britannic majesty as having been at the time of, and previous to, the aforesaid treaty of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three, within the limits of the province of Nova Scotia: in order, therefore, finally to decide upon these claims, it is agreed that they shall be referred to two commissioners, to be appointed in the following manner, viz. One commissioner shall be appointed by his Britannic majesty, and one by the president of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the senate thereof, and the said two commissioners so appointed shall be sworn impartially to examine and decide upon the said claims according to such evidence as shall be laid before them on the part of his Britannic majesty and of the United States respectively. The said commissioners shall meet at St. Andrews, in the province of New Brunswick, and shall have power to adjourn to such other place or places as they shall think fit. The said commissioners shall, by a declaration or report under their hands and seals, decide to which of tlie two contracting parties the several islands aforesaid do respectively belong, in conformity with the true intent of the said treaty of peace of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three. And if the said commissioners shall agree in their decision, both parties shall consider such decision as final and conclusive. It is further agreed, that in the event of the two commissioners differing upon all or any of the matters so referred to them, or in the event of both or either of the siud commissioners refusing or declining, or wilfully omitting, to act as such, they shall make jointly or separately, a report or reports, as well to the government of his Britannic majesty, as to that of the United States, stating in detail the points on which they cUffer, and the grounds upon which their respectiv-e opinions have been formed, or the grounds upon which they, or either of them, have so refused, declined, or omitted to act. And his Britannic majesty, and the government of the United States, hereby agree to refer the report or reports of the said commissioners, to some friendly sovereign or state, to be then named for that purpose, and who shall be requested to decide on the differences which may be stated in the said report or reports, or upon the report of one commissioner, together with the grounds upon which the other commissioner shall have refused, declined, or omitted to act, as the case may be. And if the commissioner so refusing, declining, or omitting to act, shall also wilfully omit to state the grounds upon which he has so done, in such manner that the said statement may be referred to such friendly sovereign or state, together with the report of such other commissioner, then such sovereign or state, shall decide exparte upon the said report alone. And his Britannic majesty and the government of the United States engage to consider the decision of some friendly sovereign or state to be final and conclusive, on all the matters so referred.
Art. v. — Whereas neither that point of the high lands lying due north from the source of the river St. Croix, and designated in the former treaty of peace between the two powers as the northwest angle of Nova Scotia, now the northwesternmost head of Connecticut river, has yet been ascertained; and whereas that part of the boundary line between the dominion of the two powers which extends from the source of the river St. Croix directly north to the above mentioned northwest angle of Nova Scotia, thence along the said high lands which divide those rivers that empty themselves into the river St. Lawrence from those which fall into the Atlantic ocean, to the northwesternmost head of Connecticut river, thence down along the middle of that river to the forty-fifth degree of north latitude: thence by a line due west on said latitude until it strikes the river Iroquois or Cataraguy, has not yet been surveyed: it is agreed, that for these several purposes, two commissioners shall be appointed, sworn, and authorize) to act exactly in the manner directed with respect to those mentioned in the next preceding article, unless otherwise specified in the present article. The said commissioners shall meet at St Andrews, in the province of New Brunswick, and shall have power to adjourn to such other place or places as they shall think fit. The said commissioners shall have power to aacertain and determine the points above mentioned, in conformity with the provisions of the said treaty of peace of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three, and shall cause the boundary aforesaid, from the source of the river St. Croix, to the river Iroquois or Cataraguy, to be surveyed and marked according to the said provisions. Tne said commissioners shall make a map of the said boundary, and annex it to a declaration under their hands and seals, certifying it to be the true map of the said boundary, and particularizing the latitude and longitude of the northwest angle of Nova Scotia, of the northwesternmost head of Connecticut river, and of such other points of the said boundary as they may deem proper. And both parties agree to consider such map and declaration as finally and conclusively fixing the said boundary. And in the event of the said two commissioners differing, or both, or either of them, refusing or declining, or wilfully omitting to act, such reports, declarations, or statements, shall be made by them, or either of them, and such reference to a friendly sovereign or state, shall be made, in all respects as in the latter part of the fourth article is contained, and in as full a manner as if the same was herein repeated.
Art. vi. — Whereas by the former treaty of peace, that portion of the boundary of the United States from the point where the forty-fifth degree of north latitude strikes the river Iroquois or Cataraguy to the lake Superior, was declared to be "along the middle of said river into lake Ontario, through the middle of said lake until it strikes the communication by water between that lake and lake Erie, thence along the middle of said communication into lake Erie, through the middle of said lake until it arrives at the water communication into the lake Huron, thence through the middle of said lake to the water communication between that lake and lake Superior." And whereas doubts have arisen what was the middle of said river, lakes, and water communications, whether certain islands lying in the same were within the dominions of his Britannic majesty or of the United States: in order, therefore, finally to decide these doubts, they shall be referred to two commissioners, to be appointed, sworn, and authorized to act exactly in the manner directed with respect to those mentioned in the next preceding article, unless otherwise specified in this present article. The said commissioners shall meet, in the first instance at Albany, in the state of New York, and shall have power to adjourn to such other place or places as they shall think fit. The said commissioners shall, by a report or declaration, under their hands and seals, designate the boundary through the said river, lakes, or water communications, and decide to which of the two contracting parties the several islands lying within the said river, lakes, and water communications, do respectively belong, in conformity with the true intent of the said treaty of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three. And both parties agree to consider such designation and decision as final and conclusive. And in the event of the said two commissioners differing, or both, or either of them, refusing, declining, or wilfully omitting to act, such reports, declarations, or statements, shall be made by them, or either of them; and such reference to a friendly sovereign or state shall be made in all respects as in the latter part of the fourth article is contained, and in as full a manner as if the same was herein repeated.
Art. vii. — It is further agreed that the said two last mentioned commissioners, after they shall have executed the duties assigned to them in the preceding article, shall be, and they are hereby authorized, upon their oaths, impartially to fix and determine, according to the true intent of the said treaty of peace of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three, that part of the boundary between the dominions of the two powers, which extends from the water coummunication between lake Huron and lake Superior, to the most northwestern point of the lake of the Woods, to decide to which of the two parties the several islands lying in the lakes, water communications and rivers, forming the said boundary, do respectively belong, in conformity with the true intent of the said treaty of peace of one thousand seven hundred and eighty-three; and to cause much parts of the said boundary, as require it, to be surveyed and marked. The said commissioners shall, by a report or declaration under their hands and seals, designate the boundary line aforesaid, state their decisions on the points thus referred to them, and particularize the latitude and longitude of the most northwestern point of the lake of the Woods, and of such other parts of the said boundary, as they may deem proper. And both parties agree to consider such designation and decision as final and conclusive. And in the event of the said two commissioners differing, or both, or either of them, refusing, declining, or wilfully omitting to act, such reports, declarations, or statements, shall be made by them, or either of them, and such reference to a friendly sovereign or state, shall be made in all respects, as in the latter part of the fourth article is contained, and in as full a manner as if the same was herein repeated.
Art. viii. — The several boards of two commissioners mentioned in the four preceding articles, shall respectively have power to appoint a secretary, and to employ such surveyors or other persons as they shall judge necessary. Duplicates of all their respective reports, declarations, statements and decisions, and of their accounts and of the journal of their proceedings, shall be delivered by them to the agents of his Britannic majesty, and to the agents of the United States, who may be respectively appointed and authorized to manage the business on behalf of their respective governments. The said commissioners shall be respectively paid in such manner as shall be agreed between the two consulting parties, such agreement being to be settled at the time of the exchange of the ratifications of this treaty; and all other expenses attending said commissioners shall be defrayed equally by the two parties. And in case of death, sickness, resignation, or necessary absence, the place of every such commissioner respectively shall be supplied in the same manner as such commissioner was first appointed, and the new commissioner shall take the same oath or affirmation, and do the same duties. It is further agreed between the two contracting parties, that in case any of the islands mentioned in any of the preceding articles, which were in the possession of one of the parties prior to the commencement of the present war between the countries, should, by the decision of any of the boards of commissioners aforesaid, or of the sovereign or state so referred to, as ia the four next preceding articles contained, fall within the dominions of the other party, all grants of land made previous to the commencement of the war, by the party having had such possession, shall be as valid as if such island or islands, had by such decision or decisions, been adjudged to be within the
dominions of the party having such possession.
Art. ix. — The United States of America engage to put an end, immediately after the ratification of the present treaty, to hostilities with all the tribes or nations of Indians, with whom they may be at war at the time of such ratification; and forthwith to restore to such tribes or nations, respectively, all the possessions, rights, and privileges, which they may have enjoyed or been entitled to in one thousand eight hundred and eleven, previous to such hostilities: Provided always, that such tribes or nations shall agree to desist from all hostilities against the United States of America, their citizens and subjects, upon the ratification of the present treaty being notified to such tribes or nations, and sliall so desist accordingly. And his Britannic majesty, engages, on his part, to put an end immediately after the ratification of the present treaty, to hostilities with all the tribes or nations of Indians with whom he may be at war at the time of such ratification, and forthwith to restore to such tribes or nations respectively, all the possessions, rights, and privileges, which they may have enjoyed, or been entitled to in one thousand eight hundred and eleven, previous to such hostilities: Provided always, that such tribes or nations shall agree to desist from all hostilities against his Britannic majesty, and his subjects, upon the ratification of the present treaty being notified to such tribes or nations, and shall so desist accordingly.
Art. x. — Whereas the traffic in slaves is irreconcilable with the principles of humanity and justice, and whereas both his Britannic majesty and the United States are desirous of continuing their efforts to promote its entire abolition, it is hereby agreed that both the contracting parties shall use their best endeavours to accomplish so desirable an object.
Art. xi. — This treaty, when the same shall have been ratified on both sides, without alteration by either of the contracting parties and the ratifications mutually exchanged, shall be binding on both parties, and the ratifications shall be exchanged at Washington, in the space of four months from this day, or sooner if practicable.
In faith whereof, we the respective plenipotentiaries, have signed this treaty, and have thereunto affixed our seals.
Done, in triplicate, at Ghent, the twenty-fourth day of December, one thousand eight hundred and fourteen.
(l. s.) Gambier,
(l. s.) Henry Goulbourn,
(l. s.) William Adams,
(l. s.) John Quincy Adams,
(l. s.) J. A. Bayard,
(l. s.) H. Clay,
(l. s.) Jonathan Russell,
(l. s.) Albert Gallatin.
Now, therefore, to the end that the said treaty of peace and amity may be observed with good faith, on the part of the United States, I, James Madison, president as aforesaid, have caused the premises to be made public: and I do hereby enjoin all persons bearing office, civil or military, within the United States, and all others, citizens or inhabitants thereof, or being within the same, faithfully to observe and fulfil the said treaty and every clause and article thereof.
In testimony whereof I have caused the seal of the United States to be affixed to these presents, and signed the same with my hand.
Done at the city of Washington, this eighteenth day of February, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fifteen, and of the sovereignty and independence of the United States the thirty-ninth.
By the President,
From the city battalion of uniform companies to major-general Jackson.
New-Orleans, 16th March, 1815.
We have, delayed until this moment the expression of our feelings towards you, lest the honest emotions of our hearts should be ascribed to a desire of propitiating the favour of our commander. At this moment, when neither hope nor fear ea� be supposed to have influenced us, we pray you to receive the sincere tribute of our thanks — as soldiers, for the confidence you have reposed in us; for the paternal care with which you have watched over our comforts, and above all, for that justice you have done to our zeal in assigning us on every occasion a post of danger and of honour — as citizens, for the wisdom of the measures you devised to protect our country; for the skill and bravery with which they were executed; and for that indispensable energy to which we owe our safety. Leaving to others the task of declaiming about privileges and constitutional rights, we are content with having fought in support of them &mdashp we have understanding enough to know when they are wantonly violated: and no false reasoning shall make us ungrateful to the man whose wisdom and valour have secured them to us and to our posterity! We do not deal in professions; we pray you, general, to be assured, that in the officers and men of this battalion you have soldiers who have been and are always ready to affront every danger under your command
fellow-citizens, grateful for your services — friends, personally attached to your fortunes, and ready to promote your happiness at the risk of their own. You have allowed us the endearing title of your brothers in arms — it was given to us on this field, strewed then with the bodies of our enemies; and we feel a noble pride in the consciousness that allows us to accept it. That fraternity, cemented in hostile blood, shall be the pride of our lives; and in aftertimes will secure to our children the respect of posterity. General, common phrases cannot express the emotions which agitate us at the moment of our separation — but we pray heaven to watch over your safety; and we trust to a grateful country for the honours and advancement which your services have merited.
Although born and bred in a land of freedom, popular favour has always been with me a secondary object. My first wish, in political life, has been to be useful to my country. Yet, I am not insensible to the good opinion of my fellow-citizens; I would do much to obtain it; but I cannot, for this purpose, sacrifice my own conscience or what I conceive to be the interests of my country.
These principles have prepared me to receive, with just satisfaction, the address you have presented. The first wish of my heart, the safety of your country, has been accomplished; and it affords me the greatest happiness to know that the means taken to secure this object have met the approbation of those who have had the best opportunities of judging of their propriety, and who, from their various relations, might be supposed the most ready to censure any which had been improperly resorted to. The distinction you draw, gentlemen, between those who only declaim about civil rights and those who fight to maintain them, shows how just and practical a knowledge you have of the true principles of liberty — without such knowledge all theory is useless or mischievous.
Whenever the invaluable rights which we enjoy under our happy constitution are threatened by invasion, privileges the most dear, and which, in ordinary times, ought to be regarded as the most sacred, may be required to be infringed for their security. At such a crisis, we have only to determine whether we will suspend, for a time, the exercise of the latter, that we may secure the permanent enjoyment of the former. Is it wise, in such a moment, to sacrifice the spirit of the laws to the letter, and by adhering too strictly to the letter, lose the substance forever, in order that we may, for an instant, preserve the shadow? It is not to be imagined that the express provisions of any written law can fully embrace emergencies which suppose and occasion the suspension of all law, but the highest and the last, that of self-preservation. No right is more precious to a freeman than that of suffrage; but had your election taken place on the 8th of January, would your de-claimers have advised you to abandon the defence of your country in order to exercise this inestimable privilege at the polls? Is it to be supposed that your general, if he regarded the important trust committed to his charge, would have permitted you to preserve the constitution by an act which would have involved constitution, country and honour in one undistinguished ruin?
What is more justly important than personal liberty; yet how can the civil enjoyment of this privilege be made to consist with the order, subordination and discipline of a camp? Let the sentinel be removed by subpoena from his post, let writs of habeas corpus carry away the officers from the lines, and the enemy may conquer your country by only employing lawyers to defend your constitution.
Private property is held sacred in all good governments, and particularly in our own, yet, shall the fear of invading it prevent a general from marching his army over a corn-field, or burning a house which protects the enemy?
These and a thousand other instances might be cited to show that laws must sometimes be silent when necessity speaks. The only question with the friend of his country will be, have these laws been made to be silent wantonly and unnecessarily? If necessity dictated the measure, if a resort to it was important for the preservation of those rights which we esteem so dear, and in defence of which we had so willingly taken up arms, surely it would not have been becoming in the commander-in-chief to have shrunk from the responsibility which it involved. He did not shrink from it. In declaring martial law, his object, and his only object, was to embody the whole resources of the country, for its defence. That law, while it existed, necessarily suspended all rights and privileges inconsistent with its provisions. It is matter of surprise that they who boast themselves the champions of those rights and privileges should not, when they were first put in danger by the proclamation of martial law, have manifested that lively sensibility of which they have since made so ostentatious a display. So far, however, was this from being the case, that this measure not only met, then, the open support of those who when their country was invaded thought resistance a virtue, and the silent approbation of alii but even received the particular recommendation and encouragement of many who now inveigh the most bitterly against it. It was not until a victory, secured by that very measure, had lessened the danger which occasioned a resort to it, that the present feeling guardians of our rights discovered that the commanding-general ought to have suffered his posts to be abandoned through the interference of a foreign agent — his ranks to be thinned by desertion, and his whole army to be broken to pieces by mutiny; while yet a powerful force of the enemy remained on your coast, and within a few hours sail of your city.
I thought and acted differently. It was not until I discovered that the civil power stood no longer in need of the military for its support, that I restored to it its usual functions; and the restoration was not delayed a moment after that period had arrived.
Under these circumstances, fellow-soldiers, your resolution to let others declaim about privileges and constitutional rights, will never draw upon you the charge of being indifferent to those inestimable blessings; your attachment to them has been proved by a stronger title — that of having nobly fought to preserve them. — You who have thus supported them against the open pretensions of a powerful enemy, will never, I trust, surrender them to the underhand machinations of men who stand aloof in the hour of peril, and who, when the danger is gone, claim to be the
"defenders of your constitution."
An honourable peace has dissolved our military connexion; and, in a few days, I shall quit a country endeared to me by the most pleasing recollections. Among the most prominent of these, gentlemen, are those I shall ever entertain of the distinguished bravery, the exact discipline, the ardent zeal, and the important services of your corps. The offered friendship of each individual composing it, I receive with pleasure, and with sincerity reciprocate. I shall always pride myself on a fraternity with such men, created in such a cause.
Letter from general Jackson to the secretary of war.
Head-quarters, 7th military district,
New Orleans, March 16, 1815.
I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 16th ult. advising me of the ratification of the treaty of peace between Great Britain and the United States.
In conformity with your directions, I have forwarded to the officer commanding his Britannic majesty's forces, in this quarter, information of that event.
The Tennessee and Kentucky militia will be immediately marched to their respective states, and discharged without receiving any pay beforehand. The Louisiana and Mississippi militia will be discharged and paid here. It is hoped that funds will be provided for the payment of the former in suitable time.
Difficulties are experienced from the want of means to procure forage, and transportation on the return march, colonel Knight having not yet arrived. On this account I have offered my bills on the governor of Tennessee, payable in treasury notes at Nashville.
I have received no intelligence of colonel Knight, except by your letter of the 7th ult.
The greater portion of the regulars in this quarter having enlisted to serve during the war, expect to be immediately discharged. As you have not mentioned them in your instructions, I shall be glad to hear from you on the subject as soon as possible.
It is my intention, so soon as I get the troops mustered out of service here, to remove my head-quarters to Nashville, where I shall expect to receive the orders of the government.
Major-general Gaines is placed in the immediate command of this section of the district, and I am happy to commit it to one in whom the government has such high and deserved confidence.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from major Woodruff to general Jackson.
New Orleans, March 23d, 1815.
In compliance with your orders of the 14th inst. I left the bayou St. Johns at twelve o'clock of the same day, and arrived at Dauphine island on the night of the 16th, the head-quarters of the British army.
I immediately informed major-general Lambert of your having received official notice of a treaty of peace having been signed and exchanged at the city of Washington, on the 17th of February, 1815, between the United States of America and the government of Great Britain; (a copy of which I handed him) — and that I was ordered by you to receive all forts, places, artillery, munitions of war, or other public or private property captured during the war, embraced by the first article of said treaty; and that I was particularly instructed to receive all slaves belonging to any inhabitant or citizen of the United States, captured or protected by the British army.
General Lambert informed me that he could not give up fort Bowyer until he received official information, from an authorized agent of his government, that the treaty had been confirmed by ours; — that then he would be prepared to execute, on the part of his government, every article of said treaty, except that part relating to
slaves, as it was totally incompatible
with the spirit and constitution of his government to recognize slavery at all — that he would use his influence, in persuading them to return to their masters, by every argument in his power; but that he would not use force in compelling their obedience, or permit it to be used within the British lines. That I might stand acquitted of having discharged my duty, I addressed a note to the British commander on the 16th instant, marked No. 1. His note in return, No. 2, you will perceive is evasive, and by no means a satisfactory answer to mine. I again requested a categorical answer, particularly to that part of my note relating to sdaves. His answer you will find marked No. 3.
I flatter myself, sir, I have done all in my power to effect your wishes, and regret my exertions were not attended with more success.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Lambert to general Jackson,
Head-Quarters, Isle Dauphine, March 18, 1815.
I received with great pleasure, by the hands of major Woodruff, on the evening of the 16th, about nine o'clock, yours of the 13th instant. I communicated the contents immediately to
rear admiral Malcolm, and orders were issued for the cessation of hostilities, and to all detached posts and ships to be withdrawn in our respective commands. I daily expect an official communication (similar to what you have received) from Mr. Baker. In the meantime every preparation is making for the embarkation of this force, and ships are now sent away, when we are able to put sufficient provisions on board to take them to Bermuda. Victuallers from Jamaica must be here in a very few days, when every thing will be put on board as quickly as possible; and should I by that time not have received any intelligence, the admiral and myself will have no hesitation in putting to sea directly. I have requested major Woodruff, who went up to Mobile yesterday, to acquaint the commanding officer that I would let him know the moment we were prepared to give up the fort, which would be when the transports could get out of the bay. The fort would be restored in every respect as when it fell into our possession, with the exception only of a brass mortar, cast in George the Second's reign, which had been sent away the day after.
In the fulfilling the first article of the treaty, I cannot consider the meaning of "not causing any destruction, or carrying away any artillery, or other public property, originally captured in the said forts or places, and which shall remain therein upon the exchange of the ratification of this treaty, or any slave, or other property," having reference to any antecedent period to the 18th of February, the day of the exchange of ratifications; because it is only from that time that the article could be fulfilled in a long war. If those negroes (the matter now in question) belonged to the territory or city we were actually in occupation of, I should conceive we had no right to take them away; but by their coming away, they are virtually tlie same as deserters or property taken away at any time of the war. I am obliged to say so much in justification of the right; but I have from the first done all I could to prevent, and subsequently, together with admiral Malcolm, have given every facility, and used every persuasion that they should return to tlieir masters, and many have done so; but I could not reconcile it to myself to abandon any, who, from false reasoning perhaps, joined us during the period of hostilities and have thus acted in violation of the laws of their country, and besides become obnoxious to their masters.
Had it been an object to take the negroes away, they could have been embarked in the first instance; but they have been permitted to remain in the hopes that they might return.
I am much obliged to you lor your offer of supplies, and comforts for the sick and wounded. I send a commissary, to make a few purchases, and have directed him to call on Mr. Livingston with this letter.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Maj. Gen Com’g.
congress of the united states.
The following resolutions, expressive of the high sense entertained by congress of the patriotism and good conduct of the people of Louisiana and of New Orleans, were unanimously adopted:
Resolved, by the senate and house of representatives of the United States of America in congress assembled, That congress entertain a high sense of the patriotism, fidelity, zeal and courage with which the people of the state of Louisiana promptly and unanimously stopped forth, under circumstances of imminent danger from a powerful invading army, in defence of all the individual, social, and political rights held dear by man. Congress declare and proclaim, that the brave Louisianians deserve well of the whole people of the United States.
Resolved, That congress entertain a high sense of the generosity, benevolence, and humanity, displayed by the people of New Orleans, in voluntarily offering the best accommodations in their power, and giving the kindest attention to the wounded, not only of our own army, but also to the wounded prisoners of a vanquished foe.
Resolved, That the president of the United States be requested to cause the foregoing resolutions to be communicated to his excellency the governor of Louisiana, accompanied with a request that he cause the greatest possible publicity to be given to them, for the information of the whole people of Louisiana.
Resolutions expressive of the thanks of conpjress to major-general Jackson, and the troops under his command, for their gallantry and good conduct in the defence of New Orleans:
Resolved by the senate and house of refiresevtatives of the United States of America in congress assembled. That the thanks of congress be, and they are hereby given to major-general Jackson, and through him to the officers and soldiers of the regular army, of the militia, and of tiie volunteers, under his immediate command, and the officers and soldiers charged with the defence of fort St. Philip, for their uniform gallantry and good conduct, conspicuously displayed against the enemy from the time of his landing before New Orleans until his final expulsion from the state of Louisiana: and particularly for their valour, skill and good conduct on the 8th of January last, in repulsing, with great slaughter, a numerous British army of chosen veteran troops, when attempting by a bold and daring attack to storm and carry the works hastily thrown up for the defence of New Orleans, and thereby obtaining a most signal and complete victory over the enemy, with a disparity of loss on his part unexampled in military annals.
Resolved, That the president of the United States be requested to cause to be struck a gold medal, with devices emblematical of this splendid achievement, and presented to major-general Jackson, as a testimony of the high sense entertained by congress of his judicious and distinguished conduct on that memorable occasion.
Resolved, That the president of the United States be requested to cause the foregoing resolutions to be communicated to major-general Jackson, in such terms as he may deem best calculated to give effect to the objects thereof.
Resolved, That congress entertain a high sense of the valour and good conduct of commodore D. T. Patterson, of the officers, petty officers, and seamen attached to his command, for their prompt and efficient co-operation with general Jackson, in the late gallant and successful defence of the city of New Orleans, when assailed by a powerful British force.
Resolved, That congress entertain a high sense of the valour and good conduct of major Daniel Carmick, of the officers, noncommissioned-officers and marines, under his commaind, in the defence of said city, on the late memorable occasion.
Letter from general Jackson to general Lambert,
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District,
New Orleans, 20th February, 1815;
my letter of this date, addressed to sir Alexander Cochrane, you will perceive that I have fully acquiesced in your ideas relative to the delivery and exchange of prisoners, and you will herewith receive all those now here in a state to be removed.
As you intimate that you do not consider the slaves as under your control, I have addressed the only further demand I shall make on that subject to sir Alexander Cochrane.
Some of my officers, under a mistaken idea that deserters were confined with the prisoners, have, as I have understood, made improper applications to some of the latter to quit your service. It is possible they may have in some instances succeeded in procuring either a feigned or a real consent to this effect; the whole of the transaction, however, met my marked reprehension, and all the prisoners are now restored to you. But as improper allurements may have been held out to these men, it will be highly gratifying to my feelings to learn that no investigation Avill be made, or punishment inflicted, in consequence of the conduct of those who may, under such circumstances, have swerved from their duty. As the transaction might not have been otherwise disclosed to you, the notice I now take of it shows the confidence I feel that you will not make use of any implied presumption to be drawn from it.
resolutions of the legislature of louisiana.
Be it resolved by the senate and house of representatives of the state of Louisiana in general assembly convened, That the legislature of the state of Louisiana deem it their duty to proclaim the facts herein after stated, as bearing testimony to the zeal and patriotism that were displayed by the citizens in every part of this State, during the late invasion of the British.
At the first news of our danger, the militia, together with a vast number of volunteers, flocked into New Orleans from every county in this state. The planters on both sides of the river, within a space of several leagues, either above or below town, furnished thousands of their slaves, and sent them to every particular place where their labour was thought necessary; it was through the means which were voluntarily granted by the planters, that most of the artillery, ammunition and provisions were transported; and whenever detachments occasionally stopped at their plantations, the latter met them with the most cordial reception, and were supplied with both food and forage as the same was wanting or could possibly be procured.
It should be remarked, that even those planters, whose estates had already been destroyed by the enemy, or had fallen into his possession, far from being dismayed by the sad prospect before them, had only been brought to that pitch of misfortune that their love of their country might appear with a greater lustre. Thus at the same time that MM. Villeré’s, Delaronde’s, Lacoste’s and Bienvenu’s sugar estates were laid waste, and made a prey to conflagration, M. Villeré, senior, major-general of our gallant militia, went on a survey of the upper counties for the purpose of hastening re-enforcements, which, at the first call, presented themselves in readiness to march; and when, after his return to camp, he had once taken charge at the second line of the post that had been assigned him, he was seen there invariably to fulfil his duties with that wonderful tranquillity of mind which a man, having nothing to lose, would have hardly been capable of: yet this gentleman, the head of a numerous family, could not but know, that one hundred slaves of his own were on his plantation at the mercy of the British, and that all his moveable property had already been either plundered or destroyed.
His son, M. Villeré, jun. major of the 3d regiment, after having, at the peril of his life, effected his escape from the British army, who had surprised him at his house, joined the forces that marched to repel the enemy on the 23d of December, and has ever since performed an active duty.
The important position of Chef-Menteur was protected by major Lacoste at the head of his corps, consisting of free men of colour, whilst his sugar estate was set to ruin and devastation. M. Lacoste, jun, his son, though deprived of the use of one arm, nevertheless shared constantly with his brother soldiers the toils and dangers of war.
Mr. Delaronde, colonel of the third regiment, though he abstained from claiming tiiat part of the service which his rank entitled him to, did not disdain to serve as a guide, and with imminent peril continued scouting in woods almost impracticable, both in the flank and rear of the British, for the purpose of reconnoitring and making known their position.
In town, colonel Fortier, sen. contributed in a great measure to the more prompt departure for Chef-Menteur of the free men of colour, already embodied, by furnishing them, at his own cost, with such articles as they stood in need of. To him also the country owes the forming and organizing a second corps of free men of colour, to whom the brave Savary was appointed a captain. At his call, both captain and soldiers repaired to his house to be enlisted. He personally attended to the arming and equipping of them; and through his exertions that company under the command of major Daquin, was enabled to take the field and to face the enemy a few hours after its formation. M. Fortier caused also several hundred of muskets unfit for use to be repaired.
No sooner was it reported that a British squadron had arrived on our coast, than the uniform companies of the militia of New Orleans, under the command of major Plauché,and captains P. Roche, St. Geme, Hudiy, White and Guibert, and the rifle corps under the command of captain Bcale, who had some time before tendered their services, were placed at the bayou St. John, to which point it was expected the enemy would attempt to penetrate. It was from that position those gallant companies marched, with the rapidity of lightning, to the plains of Villeré, on the 23d of December, at the first appeerance of the British. They travelled nearly twelve miles with wonderful rapidity, and fought with a bravery and resolution that would have done credit even to experienced soldiers. The first and second regiments of the militia of New Orleans, under the command of colonel Dejan and Zenon Cavelier, have conducted themselves in the several posts they were called upon to defend, with zeal and courage. They have borne with patience the fatigue of painful marches, occasioned by their being successively sent from one position to another. The fourth regiment, commanded by Mr. G. W. Morgan, their colonel, was entrusted with the defence of Chef-Menteur, upon major Lacoste's corps being withdrawn therefrom: they discharged their duty in a manner that bade defiance to all possible attempt, on the part of the enemy, to force that important pass. Three volunteer troops of horse, the one of them from the Attakapas, under the command of captain Dubuclay, and the other from Feliciana, commanded by captain Smith, and the last from Bayou Sarah, under command of captain Griffith, had already arrived in town, prior to the landing of the British. Two more troops of horse were immediately formed at New Orleans, headed by captains Chaveau and Ogden. The conduct of those several corps, upon every occasion where their services have been called for, deserves particular notice: and they were extremely useful. Captain Dubuclay was wounded in the head by a musket-ball, while in the act of rallying some men in an engagement on the right bank of the river.
General Thomas, general Hopkins and general M‘Causland, at the head of the gallant militia under their command, hastened by forced marches from their respective counties in order to assist in defending the country.
General Garrigues Flaujac, by his patriotism and the talents he displayed, whilst the capital was threatened by the enemy, has earned the honour of being ranked among those who deserved well of their country.
Whilst our gallant militia were employed in the defence of the country at the several posts which had been assigned them, the citizens more advanced in years, having voluntarily formed themselves into companies of veterans, attended to the preservation of police and civil order in town. They greatly contributed by their good countenance, to dissipate the alarm created by the approach of the enemy; and by their unwearied exertions they insured the speedy and faithful conveyance to the camp of such articles as were to be sent there. They were also usefully employed in overseeing that the many donations made by our fellow-citizens, should be both applied properly and without confusion. At the head of these respectable veterans appeared Mr. Debuys, sen. their captain.
General Labatut had the command of the town. He performed his task with a zeal and activity that have done him infinite honour.
The mayor and city council of New Orleans, by the adoption of measures that indicate their foresight and humanity, have maintained our internal peace, and so far prevented a scarcity of provisions to be felt in town, as to make it doubtful whether the presence of the enemy in our neighbourhood had diminished our supplies.
The attention of Mr. Nicholas Girod, the mayor of New Orleans, in the meanwhile, was extended, with great benefit, to each part of the service. All the means placed at his disposal were applied in a manner that told a skilful administrator. Such families as were in actual distress, were relieved, and furnished with provisions agreeably to a decree of the city council appropriating a sum fully adequate to this purpose of benevolence.
The fair of New Orleans, without exception, eagerly undertook a variety of needle-work, for the use of the army. Many of them, who till then had been accustomed to do none but the nicest work, did not disdain sewing cloaks of the coarsest woollens. They gave both lint and linen for the use of the sick and wounded.
The Ursuline nuns are also entitled to a particular notice. They gave admittance within the walls of their monastery to as many of the sick as could be conveniently lodged therein, and afforded them every aid, conformably to the dictates of true charity.
All the practising surgeons and physicians in the town have acted so as to do tne highest honour to their profession. Their readiness in bestowing assistance to the military wno wanted it, was such as did not permit them to wait till an application should be made for their services. A sympathetic feeling led them several miles below town to meet tae wounded on the way and give them immediate attendance.
A committee named by the same veterans above mentioned, whose patriotism was not merely confined to the performance of the military duties they had willingly submitted to, — on which committee they had appointed namely, Messrs. Fortier, sen. Jh. Soulie, and Mr. Louaillier, a member of the house of representatives, — was affording relief to the sick and wounded with an indefatigable zeal; procuring subscriptions for the purchase of clothing, intended for our fellow-soldiers, who had left their homes, unprovided for a winter campaign. A sum exceeding fourteen thousand dollars was actually laid out for that laudable object, including in it the appropriation of six thousand dollars made by the legislature.
Every member on that committee deserves the highest praise for their perseverance and assiduity in fulfilling their task.
The enumeration of the corps and individuals who have given so many proofs of patriotism and devotion to their country, ought not to be closed without mentioning the governor of this state, whose efforts have constantly been directed towards cherishing the happy dispositions of the inhabitants, and whose authority to its utmost extent has been employed in securing the success of the measures adopted for the defence of this country.
Be it further resolved by the authority
aforesaid, That each and every person and collection of persons mentioned in the foregoing statement are justly entitled to the gratitude of their country.
Be it further resolved by the authority
aforesaid, That it shall be the duty of the governor of the state of Louisiana, in the name of the said state, to present the corps of veterans of New Orleans with a stand of colours bearing the following inscription, "Our sons were repelling the foe, we attended to the safety of their mothers and wives;" and on the other side thereof will be seen a river, with an eagle hovering over the same, and this inscription on the river's bank "for common use, and the benefit of all."
Speaker of the House of Representatives.
President of the Senate
By the President of the United States of America.
Among the many evils produced by the wars, which, with little intermission, have afflicted Europe, and extended their ravages into other quarters of the globe, for a period exceeding twenty years, the dispersion of a considerable portion of the inhabitants of different countries, in sorrow and in want, has not been the least injurious to human happiness, nor the least severe in the trial of human virtue.
It had been long ascertained that many foreigners, flying from the dangers of their own home, and that some citizens, forgetful of their duty, had co-operated in forming an establishment on the island of Barataria, near the mouth of the river Mississippi, for the purpose of a clandestine and lawless trade. The government of the United States caused the establishment to be broken up and destroyed; and, having obtained the means of designating the offenders of every description, it only remained to answer the demands of justice by inflicting an exemplary punishment.
But it has since been represented that the offenders have manifested a sincere penitence; that they have abandoned the prosecution of the worst cause for the support of the best, and, particularly, that they have exhibited, in the defence of New Orleans, unequivocal traits of courage and fidelity. Offenders, who have refused to become the associates of the enemy in the war, upon the most seducing terms of invitation; and who have aided to repel his hostile invasion of the territory of the United States, can no longer be considered as objects of punishment, but as objects of a generous forgiveness.
It has therefore been seen, with great satisfaction, that the general assembly of the state of Louisiana earnestly recommend those offenders to the benefit of a full pardon: And in compliance with that recommendation, as well as in consideration of all the other extraordinary circumstances of the case, I James Madison, president of the United States of America, do issue this proclamation, hereby granting, publishing and declaring, a free and full pardon of all offences committed in violation of any act or acts of the congress of the said United States, touching the revenue, trade and navigation thereof, or touching the intercourse and commerce of the United States with foreign nations, at any time before the eighth day of January, in the present year one thousand eight hundred and fifteen, by any person or persons whatsoever, being inhabitants of New Orleans and the adjacent country, or being inhabitants of the said island of Barataria, and the places adjacent: Provided, that every person, claiming the benefit of this full pardon, in order to entitle himself thereto, shall produce a certificate in writing from the governor of the state of Louisiana, stating that such person has aided in the defence of New Orleans and the adjacent country, during the invasion thereof as
aforesaid. And I do hereby further authorize and direct all suits, indictments, and prosecutions, for fines, penalties, and forfeitures, against any person or persons, who shall be entitled to the benefit of this full pardon, forthwith to be stayed, discontinued and released: And all civil officers are hereby required, according to the duties of their respective stations, to carry this proclamation into immediate and faithful execution.
Done at the city of Washington, the sixth day of February, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifteen, and of the independence of the United States the thirty-ninth.
By the president,
Acting Secretary of State.
decision of the court martial in the case of major villeré.
Head-Quarters, Adjutant-General's Office,
New Orleans, March 15, 1815.
After a full examination of
all the testimony
all the testimony for and against the prosecution, the court find the said major Villeré "not guilty" of the charges and specifications exhibited against him, and do acquit him of all and every one of them. — And the court consider it due to the accused, further to declare, that" major Villeré appears to have performed his duty, from the moment he was left in command under the orders of major-general Villeré, with zeal and fidelity; and that the circumstance of his surprise and capture by the enemy, though much to be regretted, might have occurred to the most vigilant officer, and must be attributed to the loss of the whole of his picquet or advanced guard, and the extraordinary rapidity with which the enemy moved from that point."
The major-general commanding approved the foregoing sentence of the general court martial, and ordered major Villeré to resume his sword without delay.
court of inquiry.
Extracts of the Proceedings of a Court of Inquiry relative to the Retreat on the Right Bank of the Mississippi, on the 8th of January, 1815.
The court, on mature deliberation, are of opinion that the conduct of colonel Davis, Dijan and Cavallier, in the action and retreat on the 8th of January, on the western bank of the Mississippi, is not reprehensible, nor do they know of any misconduct, as officers, in either since that time.
The causes of the retreat are attributed to the shameful flight of the command of major Arnaud, sent to oppose the landing of the enemy; — the retreat of the Kentucky militia, which, considering their position, the deficiency of their arms, and other causes, may be excusable; — and the panic and confusion introduced in every part of the line, thereby occasioning the retreat and confusion of the Orleans and Louisiana drafted militia.
Whilst the court find much to applaud in the zeal and gallantry of the officer immediately commanding, they believe that a farther reason for the retreat may be found in the manner in which the force was posted on the line, which they consider exceptionable. The commands of colonels Dijan, Cavallier and Declauett, composing five hundred men, supported by three pieces of artillery, having in front a strong breastwork, occupying only a space of two hundred yards, whilst the Kentucky militia, only one hundred and seventy men strong, without artillery, occupied more than three hundred yards, covered by a small ditch only.
President of the Court.
court of inquiry.
At a Court of Inquiry assembled in the Naval arsenal, at New Orleans, by order of commodore Daniel T. Patterson, commanding the naval forces of the United States, on the New Orleans station, and continued by adjournment from day to day, — from Monday the 15th, until Friday the 19th of May, 1815 —
Present — Master commandant, Louis Alexis, president — Lieutenant commandant Charles C. B. Thompson, and lieutenant Charles E. Crawley, members — for the purpose of investigating the conduct of the officers and men of the late division of United States' gun vessels, under the command of lieutenant commandant Thomas Ap C. Jones, captured by a flotilla of British barges and lanches, on the 14th of December, 1814. The court being organized, agreeably to form, commenced with the examination of the testimony in relation to the conduct of the commanding officer of the division; and after hearing attentively all the evidence that could be produced on that subject, proceeded to a minute investigation of the whole affair.
It appears to the court, that on the 12th of December last, the British fleet first made its appearance off Cat and Ship islands — that lieutenant commandant Jones, after having reconnoitred with his division of gun-vessels, five in number, and ascertained the state of the enemy's force, on the 13th, a flotilla of the enemy's barges appearing to advance, attempted to reach the fort at the Petty Coquilles, but that in consequence of the current being ahead, and the wind failing, he was prevented from getting any further than the Malheureux islands, where he anchored his gun-vessels between twelve and two at night.
It appears to the court, that on the morning of the 14th, the enemy's flotilla being perceived to be still advancing, he placed his division in the best position to receive them, and to oppose their passage — that the enemy advanced to the attack in the course of the forenoon, and that the number of the barges and lanches to which the gun-vessels were opposed was between forty-five and fifty.
It appears to the court, that about one-third of this number attacked the flag-vessel No. 156, while the others surrounded chiefly No. 162 and 163, and that after lieutenant commandant Jones had been very severely wounded, Mr. George Parker, his master's mate, conthiued the action until overpowered by numbers, to which no effectual resistance could be made; during which time several of the enemy's barges were sunk alongside, and great slaughter done in others.
It appears to the court, that gun-vessel No. 163 was the second vessel carried, after a gallant opposition, having previously kept off the enemy for some time, and being entirely surrounded.
It appears to the court, that gun-vessel No. 142, was the vessel next carried; that this was not effected, however, until her commander, lieutenant Shedden, had been most severely wounded (who, nevertheless, remained on deck and continued to give orders to the last,) nor until she was completely surrounded by the enemy, who suffered greatly in the contest.
It appears to the court, that No. 5, sailing-master Ferris, was the next vessel that fell into the hands of the enemy — that the enemy succeeded in boarding her at a time, when further resistance was rendered ineffectual by the dismounting of her twenty-four pounder, and when the fire from the other gun-vessels had been turned upon her, after their capture.
It appears to the court, that No. 23, lieutenant M’Keever, was the last vessel captured, and that this was effected at about half past twelve o'clock, after the enemy had succeeded in turning the fire of the other gun-vessels, previously captured, upon her.
It also appears to the court, that the barges and lanches of the enemy were all mounted with cannon, and had from a thousand to twelve hundred men on board, armed in the best possible manner.
And, lastly, it further appears to the court, that after gun-vessel No. 156 had been captured by the enemy, her fire was turned upon the other gun vessels, and continued for a considerable time under the American colours.
The result of this inquiry is, a unanimous opinion, that lieutenant commandant Jones evinced by his movements, previous to the action, a judgment highly creditable to his character — that when an attack had become certain, he availed himself of every means to gain the best position for his squadron; and that, during the subsequent engagement, when opposed to a force of at least nine times his number, in large, well-appointed boats, formidably armed, he evinced a firmness and intrepidity worthy the emulation of his countrymen, and reflecting the highest honour on the service to which he belongs.
The court likewise conceive, that midshipman Parker, who acted as master's-mate during the action, on board the flag-vessel, displayed, in his determined resistance to the enemy, after the fall of his commander, the most signal bravery; and that he merits, in an especial degree, the notice of his government.
The court feels gratified in expressing the opinion, that the brave crew of gun-vessel No. 155 forcibly felt the example of their officers; and that, under its influence, they maintained a most unequal conflict, with unparalleled destruction to the enemy, until they were borne down by numbers to which no opposition could be made. — Nor did the fall of this vessel, by which the enemy's force was not only increased, but, by her position, in a great measure covered, check the ardour of the gallant defenders of the rest of the squadron; for we find them contending as long as the least prospect of annoying the enemy lasted; their exertions unimpaired by their loss, and yielding at last, in succession only, to the concentrated force of the enemy, brought to act against each vessel.
With the clearest evidence for their guide, the court experience the most heartfelt gratification in declaring the opinion, that lieutenant commandant Jones, and his gallant supporters, lieutenants Spcdden and M&squo;Keever, sailing-masters Ulrich and Ferris, their officers and men, performed their duty on this occasion in the most able and gallant manner, and that the action has added another and distinguished honour to the naval character of our country.
In approving the proceedings and opinion of the court of inquiry, I avail myself with pleasure of the favourable occasion thus afforded mc to express my admiration of the gallantry and skill displayed by lieutenant Jones, and his brave companions, in the defence made by them against so overwhelming a force as not to afford a prospect of success, to which the enemy were astonished to find a resistance offered. In this unequal contest I trust it will be found, that the national arid naval character has been nobly sustained — that the resistance of the attack of so very superior a force has contributed, in no small degree, to the eventual safety of this city.
The proceedings and opinion of the court of inquiry, of which master commandant Louis Alfexis is president, are approved.
Daniel T. Patterson,
Captain U. S. Navy, com’g. N. O. Station.
In addition to the above, I give the following letter as corroborating the above statement.
Letter from Robert Morrell, M. D. to major Latour.
New Orleans, April 8, 1815.
During my detention in the British fleet, the officers, both naval and military, with whom I had an opportunity to converse, always estimated their force here on the 8th January, at ten thousand regular troops at least. An incident occurred relating to this subject on the evening of the 7th January, which you may think worth communicating; This day I had accidentally omitted to wear uniform: while at supper with the ward-room officers of the Gorgon frigate, a military officer, (whose name I disremember) was introduced as coming directly from camp; he took a seat at table, and began to talk freely about the situation of the army, his business in the fleet, and addressing himself principally to me, he having taken up the idea I was first lieutenant of the ship. After various inquiries about the two lines, I asked the number of British he supposed might be on shore, he replied, when the last re-enforcements would be landed (which he had met three days before near Villeré's canal) there would be, marines and sailor's inclusive, from thirteen to fifteen thousand men; he was certain of this, for he had seen some returns previous to his departure; this was an intelligent officer, having the grade of captain, who had been sent by the commander-in-chief to ascertain the quantity of provisions in the fleet.
I am, &c.
Robert Morrell, M. D.
United States Navy.
London, Admiralty Office, March 9, 1815.
Despatches addressed by Vice-Admiral the honourable Sir Alexander Cochrane, G. C. B. &c. to John Wilson Croker, Esq.
Armide, off Isle au Chat, Dec. 16, 1814.
Sir — Having arrived at the anchorage, off Chandeleur islands, on the 8th inst. captain Gordon, of the Seahorse, (which ship, with the Armide and Sophie, I had sent on from off Pensacola to the anchorage within Isle au Vaisseau) reported to me that two gun-vessels of the enemy, apparently large sized sloops, of very light draught of water, had fired at the Armide, upon her way down from within the chain of small islands that run parallel to the coast from Mobile towards Lac Borgne, and having afterwards joined three others, cruising in the lake, were then visible from his mast head.
The Bayone Catalan, (or des Pecheurs) at the head of Lac Borgne, being the contemplated point of disembarkation, the distance from the inner anchorage of the frigates and troop-ships to the Bayone full sixty miles, and our principal means of transport open boats, it became impossible that any movement of the troops could take place till this formidable flotilla was either captured or destroyed.
Rear-admiral Malcolm joined me with the fleet upon the 11th instant, and upon the 12th I placed the lanches, barges, and pinnaces of the squadron, with captain Montressor, of the Manly, and captain Roberts, of the Meteor, under the command of captain Lockyer, of the Sophie, and sent them into Lac Borgne, in pursuit of the enemy, while the frigates, troop-ships, and smaller vessels, moved into the inmost anchorage, each vessel proceeding on until she took the ground.
After an arduous row of thirty-six hours, captain Lockyer had the good fortune to close with the flotilla, which he attacked with such judgment and determined bravery, that, notwithstanding their formidable force, their advantage of a chosen position, and their studied and deliberate preparation, he succeeded in capturing the whole of the vessels, in so serviceable a state as to afford at once the most essential aid to the expedition.
For the particulars of this brilliant affair, I refer their lord-sliips to the accompanying copy of captain Lockyer's letter, detailing his proceedings, which, I am fully aware, their lordships will duly appreciate.
Captain Lockyer's conduct on this occasion, in which he has been severely wounded, and his long and actual services as a commander, justly entitling him to their lordship's protection, and finding it expedient to place this flotilla collectively upon the establishment of a thirty-six gun frigate, I have appointed him to the command thereof.
Captain Montressor, whom I have placed in the command of the gun-vessels until captain Lockyer's wounds will admit of his serving, and captain Roberts, whom I have before had occasion to mention to their lordships, together with lieutenants Tatnell and Roberts, and the officers mentioned by captain Lockyer, I trust I will not fail to meet their lordship's notice.
Our loss has been severe, particularly in officers: but, considering that this successful enterprise has given us the command of Lac Borgne, and considerably reduced our deficiency of transports, the effort has answered my fullest expectations.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Vice-admiral and Commander-in-chief.
Letter from Nicholas Lockycr to admiral Cochrane.
H. M. sloop Sophie, Cat Island Roads, December 17, 1814.
Sir ‐ I beg leave to inform you, that in pursuance of your orders the boats of the squadron, which you did me the honour to place under my command, were formed into three divisions, (the first headed by myself, the second by captain Montressor, of the Manly, and the third by captain Roberts, of the Meteor) and proceeded, on the night of the 12th instant, from the frigate's anchorage in quest of the enemy's flotilla.
After a very tedious row of thirty-six hours, during which the enemy attempted to escape from us, the wind fortunately obliged hina to anchor off St. Joseph's island, and nearing him, on the mornhig of the 14th, I discovered his force to consist of five gun vessels of the largest dimensions, which were moored in a. line abreast, with springs on their cables, and boarding nettings triced up, evidently prepared for our reception.
Observing also, as we approached the flotilla, an
endeavouring to join them, captain Roberts, who volunteered to take her with part of his division, succeeded in cutting her off and capturing her, without much opposition.
About ten o'clock, having closed to, within long gun-shot, I directed the boats to come to a grapnel, and the people to get their breakfasts; and as soon as they had finished we again took to our oars, and pulling up to the enemy against a strong current, running at the rate of nearly three miles an hour, exposed to a heavy and destructive fire of round and grape, about noon I had the satisfaction of closing with the commodore in the Seahorse's barge.
After several minutes' obstinate resistance, in vrhich the greater part of the officers and crew of this boat were either killed or wounded, myself among the latter, severely, we succeeded in boarding, and being seconded by the Seahorse's first barge, commanded by Mr. White, midshipman, and aided by the boats of the Tonnant, commanded by lieutenant Tatnell, we soon carried her, and turned her guns with good effect upon the remaining four.
During this time captain Montressor's division was making every possible exertion to close with the enemy, and, with the assistance of the other boats, then joined by captain Roberts, in about five minutes we had possession of the whole of the flotilla.
I have to lament the loss of many of my brave and gallant companions, who gloriously fell in this attack; but considering the great strength of the enemy's vessels, (whose force underneath described) and their state of preparation, we have by no means suffered so severely as might have been expected.
I am under the greatest obligations to the officers, seamen and marines, I had the honour to command on this occasion, to whose gallantry and exertions the service is indebted for the capture of these vessels; any comments of mine would fall short of the praise due to them. I am especially indebted to captains Montressor and Roberts, for their advice and assistance. They are entitled to more than I can say of them, and have my best thanks for the admirable style in which they pushed on with their divisions to the capture of the remainder of the enemy's flotilla.
In an expedition of this kind, where so many were concerned, and so much personal exertion and bravery was displayed, I find it impossible to particularize every individual who distuiguished himself, and deserves to be well-spoken of; but I feel it my duty to mention those whose behaviour fell immediately under my own eye.
Lieutenant George Pratt, second of the Seahorse, who commanded that ship's boats, and was in the same boat with me, conducted himself to that admiration which I cannot sufficiently express. In his attempt to board the enemy he was several times severely wounded, and at last so dangerously, that I fear the service will be deprived of this gallant and promising young officer.
I cannot omit to mention also the conduct of lieutenants Tat-nell and Roberts, of the Tonnant, particularly the former, who, after having his boat sunk alongside, got into another, and gallantly pushed on to the attack of the remainder of the flotilla. Lieutenant Roberts was wounded in closing with the enemy,
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
- No. 1 — Gun-vessel, 1 long twenty-four-pounder, 4 twelve-pound carronades, and 4 swivels, with a complement of 45 men; captain Jones, commodore.
- No. 2 — Gun-vessel, 1 long thirty-two-pounder, 6 long six-pounders, 2 five-inch howitzers, and 4 swivels, with a complement of 45 men; lieutenant M‘Ives [M‘Keever.]
- No. 3 — Gun-vessel, 1 long twenty-four-pounder, 4 long six-pounders, and 4 swivels, with a complement of 45 men.
- No. 4 — Gun-vessel, 1 long twenty-four-pounder, 4 twelve-pound carronades, with a complement of 45 men.
- No. 5 — Gun-vessel, 1 long twenty-four-pounder, 4 twelve-pound carronades, with a complement of 45 men.
- No. 6 — Armed sloop, 1 long six pounder, 2 twelve-pound carronades, with a complement of 20 men.
Nicholas Lockyer, Captain.
A list of killed and wounded in the boats of his majesty's ships, at the capture of the American gun vessels, near New Orleans.
- Tonnant — 1 able seaman, 2 ordinary seamen, killed; 1 lieutenant, 4 midshipmen, 4 able seamen, 4 ordinary seamen, 2 landsmen, 3 private marines, wounded.
- Norge — 1 quarter-master, killed; 1 master's-mate, 4 able seamen, 3 ordinary seamen, 1 private marine, wounded.
- Bedford — 1 seamen, killed; 2 lieutenants, 1 master's-mate, 2 seamen, wounded.
- Royal Oak — 1 seaman, wounded.
- Ramilies — 4 seamen, killed; 9 seamen, wounded.
- Armide — 1 seaman, killed.
- Cydnus — 1 midshipman, 1 seaman, 2 private marines, wounded.
- Seahorse — 1 midshipman, 1 volunteer of the first class, 1 able seaman, 1 ordinary seaman, 1 landman, 4 private marines, killed; 1 lieutenant of marines, 7 able seamen, 7 ordinary seamen, 1 landman, 4 private marines, wounded.
- Traave — 1 volunteer of the first class, 1 captain of the foretop; killed; 1 private marine, wounded.
- Sophie — 1 captain, wounded.
- Meteor — 3 seamen, wounded.
- Belle Poule — 2 seamen, wounded.
- Gorgon — I master's mate, wounded.
- Total — 3 midshipmen, 13 seamen, 1 private marine, killed; 1 captain, 4 lieutenants, 1 lieutenant of marines, 3 master's-mates, 7 midshipmen, 50 seamen, 11 marines, wounded.
Letter from major-general Keane to major-general Packenham.
Camp on the left bank of the Mississippi, nine miles from New Orleans,
December 26, 1814.
I have the honour to inform you, that between the 17th and 22d inst. the troops destined for the attack of New Orleans, were collected at Isle aux Poix, which is at the entrance of the Pearl river.
Having learnt that it was possible to effect a landing at the head of the bayou Catalan, which runs into lake Borgne, I directed major Forrest, assistant quarter-master-general, to have it reconnoitered. Lieutenant Peddie, of that department, accompanied by the hon. captain Spenser, of the navy, ascertained on the night of the 18th, that boats could reach the head of the bayou, from which a communication might be made to the high road on the left bank of the Mississippi, leading to New Orleans.
On the morning of the 23d, every arrangement being made by vice-admiral the hon. sir Alexander Cochrane, I determined to attempt it. The light brigade, composed of the 85th and 95th regiments, captain Lane's rocketeers, one hundred sappers and miners, and the 4th regiment as a support, the whole under the command of colonel Thornton, were placed in the boats, and the 21st, 44th, and 93d regiments, under colonel Brooke, and a large proportion of artillery, under major Munro, were embarked in small vessels.
At ten A. M. on the 22d, we sailed from Pearl river, and i-eached the head of the bayou at day-light next morning. A landing was immediately effected without any other opposition than the country presented. Captain Blanchard, of the royal engineers, an the course of two hours opened a communication through several fields of reeds, intersected by deep muddy ditches, bordered by a low swampy wood. Colonel Thornton then advanced and gained the high road, taking up a position with the right resting on the road, and the left on the Mississippi. In this situation I intended to remain until the boats returned for the rest of the troops to the vessels, some of which grounded at a great distance.
At about eight o'clock in the evening, when the men, much fatigued by the length of time they had been in the boats, were asleep in their bivouac, a heavy flanking fire of round and grape shot was opened upon them, by a large schooner and two gun-vessels, which had dropped down the river from the town, and anchored abreast of our fires; — immediate steps were necessary te cover the men, and colonel Thornton in the most prompt and judicious manner, placed his brigade under the inward slope of the bank of the river, as did also lieutenant-colonel Brooke, of the 4th regiment, behind some buildings which were near that corps. This movement was so rapid that the troops suffered no more than a single casualty.
The three-pounders, being the only guns up, the success of a few twelve-pound rockets, directed by captain Lane, was tried against these vessels; but the ground on which it was necessary to lay them not being even, they were found not to answer, and their firing was ceased.
A most vigorous attack was then made on the advanced front and right flank picquets, the former of the 95th under captain Hallan, the latter the 85th under captain Schaw; these ofiicers and their respective picquets, conducted themselves with firmness, and checked the enemy for a considerable time; byt renewing their attack with a large force, and pressing at these points, colonel Thornton judged it necessary to move up the remainder of both corps. The 85th regiment was commanded by brevet major Gubbins, whose conduct cannot be too much commended; on the approach of his regiment to the point of attack, the enemy, favoured by the darkness of the night, concealed themselves under a high fence which separated the fields, and calling to the men as friends, under pretence of being part of their own force, offered to assist them in getting over, which was no sooner accomplished, than the 85th found itself in the midst of very superior numbers, who, discovering themselves, called on the regiment immediately to surrender — the answer was an instantaneous attack; a more extraordinary conflict has perhaps never occurred, absolutely hand te hand both officers and men. It terminated in the repulse of the enemy, with the capture of thirty prisoners. A similar finesse was attempted with the 95th regiment, which met the same treatment.
The enemy finding his reiterated attacks were repulsed by colonel Thornton, at half past ten o'clock advanced a large column against our centre; perceiving his intention, I directed colonel Stovin to order lieutenant-colonel Dale, with one hundred and thirty men of the 93d regiment, who had just reached the camp, to move forward and use the bayonet, holding the 4th regiment in hand, formed in line, as my last reserve. Colonel Dale endeavoured to execute the orders, but the crafty enemy would not meet him, seeing the steadiness of his small body, gave it a heavy fire, and quickly retired. Colonel Brooke, with four companies of the 21st regiment, fortunately appeared at that moment on our right flank, and sufficiently secured it from further attack.
The enemy now determined on making a last effort, and collecting the whole of his force, formed an extensive line, and moved directly against the light brigade. At first this line drove in all the advanced posts, but colonel Thornton, whose noble exertions had guaranteed all former success, was at hand: he rallied his brave comrades round him, and moving forward with a firm determination of charging, appalled the enemy, who, from the lesson he had received on the same ground in the early part of the evening, thought it prudent to retire, and did not again dare to advance. It was now twelve o'clock, and the firing ceased on both sides.
From the best information I can obtain, the enemy's force amoynted to five thousand men, and was commanded by major-general Jackson; judging from the number left on the field, his loss must have been severe. I now beg leave to enclose a list of our casualties on that night, and have only to hope it will appear to you that every officer and soldier on shore did his duty.
To sir Alexander Cochrane I feel particularly obliged for his very friendly counsel and ready compliance with every wish I expressed respecting the service or welfare of the troops.
To rear-admiral Malcom, and the several captains employed in the landing &c. I confess the greatest obligation. I must leave it to the vice-admiral to do them the justice they so much deserve for I cannot find words to express the exertions made by every branch of the navy, since the period of our arrival on this coast during the day, but with little effect. In the evening the troops were retired beyond reach of the enemy's guns, and directed to hut themselves. Ground was also marked out for a redoubt on our flank, and the guns on our left covered them from the enemy's fire.
From the 28th to the 31st every exertion was made to get lip from the ships ten eighteen-pound and four twenty-four-pound carronades, with the ammunition and stores. These were brought up the canal in boats to within a quarter of a mile of the main road, and thence transported on carriages of the country or our own limbers, by the seamen, with incredible labour. The weather was fortunately fair, and the road consequently good.
The enemy, during this period, established two batteries of one gun each on the opposite bank of the river, and occasionally threw shot into our camp with some effect.
Four eighteen-pounders were placed in a battery formed with hogsheads of sugar, on the main road, to fire upon the ship if she dropped down the river.
Preparations were also made to establish batteries, one of six eighteen-pounders to break the enemy's line, and the four twenty-four-pound carronades, and the field-gun and howitzers were to keep the fire of the enemy under, whilst the troops were to be moved forward to storm the works so soon as a practicable breach was effected.
On the night of the 31st December working parties were employed in throwing up the batteries and getting in the guns. In this they were most materially assisted by the seamen under captain sir Thomas Troubridge: before daylight the whole was completed, and the batteries ready to open.
The morning of the 1st January was foggy, and objects could not be discerned at any distance until nine o'clock, when our batteries opened. The enemy soon returned our fire, and a mutual cannonade took place: — Our batteries made little impression upon the enemy's parapet. The order for the assault was therefore not carried into effect. The troops remained in this advanced position, and orders were given to retire the guns in the night. The evening changed to wet, and the ground became in consequence so deep, that it required the exertions of the whole army as a working party, aided by the seamen, to retire the guns a short distance before daylight. The army then fell back to the position it occupied on the 31 st.
C. R. Forrest, A. Q. R. M. G.
despatch from general lambert to lord bathurst.
Camp in front of the enemy's line before New Orleans,
January 10, 1815.
It becomes my duty to lay before your lordship the proceedings of the force lately employed on the coast of Louisiana, under the command of major-general sir E. M. Pakenham, K. B. and acting in concert with vice-admiral the honourable sir A. Cochrane, K. B.
The report which I enclose from major-general Keane will put your lordship in possession of the,occurrences which took place until the arrival of major-general the hon. sir E. M. Pakenham, to assume the command: from that period I send an extract of the journal of major Forrest, assistant-quarter-master-general, up to the time of joining the troops (which sailed on the 26th October last under my command) and which was on the 6th January; and from that period I shall detail, as well as I am able, the subsequent events.
I found the army in position, in a flat country, with the Mississippi on its left, and a thick extensive wood on its right, and open to its front, from which the enemy's line was quite distinguishable.
It seems sir E. Pakenham had waited for the arrival of the fusileers and the 43d regiment, in order to make a general attack upon the enemy's line; and on the 8th the army was formed for that object.
In order to give your lordship as clear a view as I can, I shall state the position of the enemy. On the left bank of the river it was simply a straight line of a front of about one thousand yards, with a parapet, the right resting on the river and the left on a wood, which had been rendered impracticable for any body of troops to pass. This line was strengthened by flank-works, and had a canal of four feet deep, but not always of an equal width; it was supposed to narrow towards their left. About eight heavy guns were in position on this line. The Mississippi is here about eight hundred yards wide, and they had on the right bank a heavy battery of twelve guns, which enfiladed the whole front of the position on the left bank.
Preparations were made on our side with very considerable labour, to clear out and widen a canal that communicated with a stream by which the boats had passed up to the place of disembarkation, to open it into the Mississippi, by which means troops could be got over to the right bank, and the co-operation of armed boats would be secured.
The disposition for the attack was as follows: a corps consisting of the 85th light infantry, two hundred seamen, and four hundred marines, the 5th West-India regiment, and four pieces of artillery, under the command of colonel Thornton of the 85th, was to pass over during the night, and move along the right bank towards New Orleans, clearing its front, until it reached the flanking battery of the enemy on that side, which it had orders to carry.
The assailing of the enemy's works in front of us was to be made by the brigade composed of the 4th, 21 st and 44th, under major-general Gibbs, and the 3d brigade, consisting of the 93d, two companies of the 95 th, and two companies of the fusileers, and the 43d, under major-general Keane. Some black troops were destined to skirmish in the wood on the right; — the principal attack to be made by major-general Gibbs; — the first brigade and the 43d formed the reserve; — the attacking columns were to be provided with scaling-ladders and rafts; — the whole to be at their stations by daylight. An advanced battery in our front of six eighteen-pounders was thrown up during the night, about eight hundred yards from the enemy's line. The attack was to be made at the earliest hour. Unlooked for difficulties, increased by the falling of the river, occasioned considerable delay in the entrance of the armed boats; and those destined to land colonel Thornton's corps, by which four or five hours were lost, and it was not until half past five in the morning that the first division, consisting of five hundred men, were over. The ensemble of the general movement was lost, and in a point which was of the last importance to the attack of the left bank of the river, although colonel Thornton, as your lordship will see by his report, which I enclose, ably executed in every particular his instructions, and fully justified the confidence the commander of the forces placed in his abilities. The delay attending that corps occasioned some on the left bank, and the attack did not take place till the columns were discernible from the enemy's line at more than two hundred yards distance. As they advanced a continued and most galling fire was opened from every part of their line, and from the battery on the right bank.
The brave commander of the forces, who never in his life could refrain from being at the post of honour, and sharing the danger to which the troops were exposed, as soon as from his station he had made the signal for the troops to advance, galloped on to the front to animate thein by his presence, and he was seen with his hat off encouraging them on the crest of the glacis; it was there (almost at the same time) that he received two wounds, one in his knee, and another, which was almost instantly fatal, in his body: he fell in the arms of major M‘Dougall, aid-de-camp. The effect of this in the sight of the troops, together with major-general Gibbs and major-general Keane being both borne off wounded at the same time, with many other commanding officers, and further, the preparations made to aid in crossing the ditch not being so forward as they ought to have been, from, perhaps, the men being wounded who were carrying them, caused a wavering in the column, which in such a situation became irreparable; and as I advanced with the reserve, at about two hundred and fifty yards from the line, I had the mortification to observe the whole falling back upon me in the greatest confusion.
In this situation, finding that there had been no impression made, — that though many men had reached the ditch, and were either drowned or obliged to surrender, and that it was impossible to restore order in the regiments where they were, — I placed the reserve in
until I could obtain such information as to determine me how to act to the best of my judgment, and whether or not I should resume the attack, and if so, I felt it could be done only by the reserve. The confidence I have in the corps composing it would have encouraged me greatly, though not without loss, which might have made the attempt of serious consequence, as I know it was the opinion of the late distinguished commander of the forces, that the carrying of the first line would not be the least arduous service. After making the best reflections 1 was capable of, I kept the ground the troops then held, and went to meet vice-admiral sir A. Cochrane, and to tell him that under ail the circumstances, I did not think it proper to renew the attack on that day. At about ten o'clock I learnt of the success of colonel Thornton's corps on the right bank. I sent the commanding officer of the artillery, colonel Dickson, to examine the situation of the battery, and report if it was tenable; but informing me that he did not think it could be held with security by a smaller corps than two thousand men, I consequently ordered lieutenant-colonel Gubbins, on whom the command had devolved (colonel Thornton being wounded) to retire.
The army remained in position until night, in order to gain time to destroy the eighteen-pounder battery we had constructed the preceding night in advance, I then gave orders for the troops to resume the ground they had occupied previous to the attack.
Our loss has been very severe, but I trust it will not be considered, notwithstanding the failure, that this army has suffered the military character to be tarnished. I am satisfied, had I thought it right to renew the attack, that the troops would have advanced with cheerfulness. The services of both army and navy, since their landing on this coast, have been arduous beyond any thing I have ever witnessed, and difficulties have been got over with an assiduity and perseverance beyond all example by all ranks, and the most hearty co-operation has existed between the two services.
It is not necessary for mc to expatiate to you upon the loss the army has sustained in major-general the hon. sir E. Pakenham, commander-in-chief of this force, nor could I in adequate terms. His services and merits are so well known, that I have only, in common with the whole army, to express my sincere regret, and which may be supposed at present to come peculiarly home to me.
Major-general Gibbs, who died of his wounds the following day, and major-general Keane, who were both carried off the field within twenty yards of the glacis, at the head of their brigades, sufficiently speak at such a moment how they were conducting themselves. I am happy to say major-general Keane is doing well.
Captain Wylly, of the fusileers, military secretary of the late commander of the forces, will have the honour of delivering to your lordship these despatches. Knowing how much he enjoyed his esteem, and was in his confidence from a long experience of his talents, I feel I cannot do less than pay this tribute to what I conceive would be the wishes of his late general, and to recommend him strongly to your lordship's protection.
I am, &c.
Return of casualties on the 8th January, 1815.
- General staff — 1 captain, 1 lieutenant; wounded one major-general.
- Royal artillery — 5 rank and file killed; 10 rank and file wounded.
- Royal engineers, sappers and miners — 3 rank and file wounded.
- 4th foot — 1 ensign, 2 serjeants, 39 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant-colonel, 1 major, 5 captains, 11 lieutenants, 4 ensigns, 1 staff, 9 serjeants, 222 rank and file wounded; 1 lieutenant, 1 serjeant, 53 rank and file missing.
- 7th foot — 1 major, 1 captain, I serjeant, 38 rank and file killed; 2 captains, 2 lieutenants, 2 Serjeants, 47 rank and file wounded.
- 21st foot — 1 major, 1 captain, 1 lieutenant, 2 serjeants, 65 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant-colonel, 1 major, 2 lieutenants, 6 Serjeants, 1 drummer, 144 rank and file wounded; 2 captains, 7 lieutenants, 8 serjeants, 2 drummers, 217 rank and file missing.
- 43d foot — 2 serjeants, 1 drummer, 8 rank and file killed; 2 lieutenants, 3 serjeants, 3 drummers, 34 rank and file wounded; I captain, 5 rank and file missing.
- 44th foot — 1 lieutenant, 1 ensign, 1 serjeant, 32 rank and file killed; 1 captain, 5 lieutenants, 3 ensigns, 5 serjeants, 149 rank and file wounded; 1 lieutenant, 2 serjeants, 1 drummer, 76 rank and file missing.
- 85th foot — 2 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant-colonel, 1 lieutenant 3 serjeants, 2 drummers, 34 rank and file wounded; 1 rank and file missing.
93d foot — 1 lieutenant-colonel, 2 captains, 2 Serjeants, 58 rank and file killed; 4 captains, 5 lieutenants, 7 serjeants, 3 drummers, 348 rank and file wounded; 3 lieutenants, 2 serjeants, 1 drummer, 99 rank and file missing.
- 95th foot — 1 serjeant, 10 rank and file killed; 2 captains, 5 lieutenants, 5 serjeants, 89 rank and file wounded.
- Royal marines — 2 rank and file killed; 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 1 serjeant, 12 rank and file wounded.
- Royal navy — 2 seamen killed; 1 captain, 18 seamen wounded.
- 1st West-India regiment — 5 rank and file killed; 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 2 ensigns, 2 serjeants, 16 rank and file wounded; 1 rank and file missing.
- 5th West-India regiment — 1 serjeant wounded.
- Total loss — 1 major-general, 1 lieutenant-colonel, 2 majors, 5 captains, 2 lieutenants, 2 ensigns, 11 serjeants, 1 drummer, 266 rank and file killed; 2 major-generals, 3 lieutenant-colonels, 2 majors, 18 captains, 38 lieutenants, 9 ensigns, 1 staff, 54 Serjeants, 9 drummers, 1,126 rank and file wounded; 3 captains, 12 lieutenants, 13 Serjeants, 4 drummers, 452 rank and file missing.
Names of officers killed, wounded and missing.
- General staff — Major-general the honourable sir Edward Pakenham, K. B. commander of the forces; captain Thomas Wilkinson, 85th regiment, major of brigade.
- 4th foot — Ensign William Crowe.
- 7th foot — Major George King, captain George Henry.
- 21st foot — Major John Anthony Whittaker, captain Robert Rcnny (lieutenant colonel,) and lieutenant Donald M‘Donald.
- 44th foot — Lieutenant Rowland Davies, ensign M. M‘Loskey.
- 93d foot — Lieutenant-colonel Robert Dale, captain Thomas Hickins, and captain Alexander Mairhead.
- General staff. — Major-general Gibbs, severely (since dead;) major-general Keane, severely; captain Henry Thomas Shaw, 4th foot (brigade-major) slightly; lieutenant Dclacy Evans (3d drargoons, deputy-assistant-quarter-master-general) severely.
- 4th foot — lieutenant-colonel Francis Brooke, slightly; major A. D. Faunce (lieutenant-colonel) severely; captain J. Williamson (major) severely; captain T. Jones (lieutenant-colonel) severely, (since dead;) captain J. W. Fletcher, severely; captain R. Erskine severely; captain D. S. Craig, slightly; lieutenants Ellis, Parnal, Hopkins, and J. Salvin, slightly; lieutenants W. H. Brook, B. Martin, and G. Richardson, severely; lieutenant P. Boulby and G. H. Hearn, slightly; lieutenants W. Squire, C. H. Farrington, J. Marshall, and H. Andrews, severely; ensign Alexander Gerard, slightly; ensign Thomas Benwell, severely; ensigns J. S. Fernandaz, and E. Newton, slightly; lieutenant and adjutant W. Richardson, slightly.
- 7th foot — captain J. J. A. Mullins, slightly; captain W. E. Page, severely; lieutenant M. Higgins, severely; lieutenant C. Lorentz, slightly.
- 21st foot — Lieutenant-colonel W. Patterson (colonel) severely (not dangerously;) major A. J. Ross, severely; lieutenant J. Waters, severely; second-lieutenant A. Geddes, severely.
- 43d foot — lieutenant J. Meyricke, severely (left leg amputated;) lieutenant D Campbell, severely.
- 44th foot — Captain H. Debbieg (lieutenant-colonel) slightly; lieutenant W. Maclean, slightly; lieutenants R. Smith, H. Brush, R. Phelan, and W. Jones, severely; ensigns J. White, B. L. Hayden, and J. Donaldson, severely.
- 85th foot — Lieutenant-colonel W. Thornton (colonel) severely, (not dangerously;) lieutenant B. C. Urquhart, severely (not dangerously.)
- 93d foot — captains R. Ryan, P. O. K. Boulger, A. M‘Kenzie, and H. Ellis, severely; lieutenants H. H. M‘Lean, R. Spark, and Macpherson, slightly; C. Gordon, and J. Hay, severely.
95th foot — Captain J. Travers, severely; captain N. Travers, slightly; lieutenants J. Reynolds, sir J. Ribton, J. Gosset, W. Blackhousc, and Barker, severely.
- Royal marines — Captain G. Elliott, slightly; lieutenants H. Elliott, and C. Morgan, slightly.
- 1st West-India regiment — Captain Isles, severely; lieutenants M‘Donald and Morgan, severely; ensign Millar, slightly; ensign Pilkington, severely.
- Royal navy — Captain Money, of H. M. ship Trave, severely; midshipman M. Woolcombe, Tonnant, severely.
- 93d foot — Volunteer John Wilson, slightly.
- 4th foot — Lieutenant E. Field, severely wounded and taken prisoner.
- 21st foot — Captain J. M‘Haffie (major;) captain A. Kidd; lieutenants J. Stewart and A. Armstrong, taken prisoners; lieutenants J. Brady, wounded and taken prisoner; lieutenant J. Leavock, taken prisoner; lieutenant R. Carr, wounded and taken prisoner; lieutenant J. S. M. Fonhlangue, taken prisoner; secondlicutenant P. Quin, wounded and taken prisoner.
- 43d foot — Captain R. Simpson, severely wounded and taken prisoner.
- 44th foot — Lieutenant W. Knight.
- 93d foot — Lieutenants G. Munro, J. M‘Donald and Graves, severely wounded; volunteer B. Johnson.
Lieut. Col. Dep. Adjt. Gen.
return of casualties between the 9th and 26th january,
- 43d foot — 1 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant, (E. D'Arcy, severely, both legs amputated,) 1 serjeant, 2 rank and file wounded.
- 85th foot — 1 rank and file wounded.
- Total — 1 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant, 1 serjeant, 3 rank and file wounded.
Lieut. Col. Dep. Adjt. Gen.
return of the ordnance
Taken from the enemy by a detachment of the army acting on the right bank of the Mississippi, under the command of colonel Thornton.
Redoubt, Right Bank of the Mississippi, Jan. 8th, 1815.
1 brass ten-inch howitzer, 2 brass four-pounder field-pieces, 3 twenty-four-pounders, 3 twelve-pounders, 6 nine-pounders, I twelve-pounder carronade, not mounted.
On the howitzer is inscribed, "Taken at the surrender of York-Town, 1781."
Major, Capt. Royal Art.
Letter from lieutenant-colonel Thornton to major-general Pakettrham.
Redoubt on the right bank of the Mississippi, January 8, 1815.
no time in reporting to you the success of the troops which you were yesterday pleased to place under my orders, with the view of attacking the enemy's redoubt and position on this side of the river.
It is within your own knowledge, that the difficulty had been found so extremely great of dragging the boats through the canal, which had been lately cut with so much labour, to the Mississippi, that, notwithstanding every possible exertion for the purpose, we were unable to proceed across the river until eight hours after the time appointed, and even then, with only a third part of the force which you had allotted for the service.
The current was so strong, and the difficulty, in consequence of keeping the boats together, so great, that wc only reached this side of the river at day-break, and by the time the troops were disembarked, which was effected without any molestation from the enemy, I perceived by the flashes of the guns that your attack had already commenced.
This circumstance made me extremely anxious to move forward, to prevent the destructive enfilading fire, which would, of course, be opened on your columns from the enemy's batteries on this side; and I proceeded with the greatest possible expedition, strengthened and secured on my right flank by three gun-boats, under captain Roberts of the navy, whose zeal and exertions on this occasion were as unremitted as his arrangements in embarking the troops, and in keeping the boats together in crossing the river, were excellent.
The enemy made no opposition to our advance, until we reached a piquet, posted behind a bridge, at about five hundred paces from the house in the Orange Grove, and secured by a small work, apparently just thrown up.
This picquct was very soon forced and driven in by a division of the 85th regiment, under captain Schaw, of that regiment, forming the advanced-guard, and whose mode of attack for the purpose was prompt and judicious to a degree.
Upon my arrival at the Orange Grove, I had an opportunity of reconnoitring, at about seven hundred yards, the enemy's position, which I found to be a very formidable redoubt on the bank of the river, with the right flank secured by an intrenchment extending back to a thick wood, and its line protected by an incessant fire of grape. Under such circumstatices it seemed to me to afford the best prospect of success, to endeavour to turn his right at the wood; and I accordingly detached two divisions of the 85th regiment, under brevet lieutenant-colonel Gubbins, to effect that object; which he accomplished with his usual zeal and judgment; whilst one hundred sailors, under captain Money, of the royal navy, who, I am sorry to say, was severely wounded, but whose conduct was particularly distinguished on the occasion, threatened the enemy's left, supported by the division of the 85th regiment, under captain Schaw.
When these divisions had gained their proper position, I deployed the column composed of two divisions of the 85th regiment, under major Deshon, whose conduct I cannot sufficiently recommend, and about one hundred men of the royal marines, under major Adair, also deserving of much commendation, and moved forward in line, to the attack of the centre of the intrenchment.
At first the enemy, confident in his own security, showed a good countenance, and kept up a heavy fire, but the determination of the troops which I had the honour to command, to overcome all difficulties, compelled him to a rapid and disorderly flight, leaving in our possession his redoubts, batteries, and position, with sixteen pieces of ordnance, and the colours of the New Orleans regiment of militia.
Of the ordnance taken, I enclose the specified return of major Mitchell, of the royal artillery, who accompanied and afforded me much assisttnee, by his able directions of the firing of some rockets, it not having been found practicable, in the first instance, to bring over the artillery attached to his command.
I shall have the honour of sending you a return of the casualties that have occurred, as soon as it is possible to collect them, but I am happy to say they are extremely inconsiderable when the strength of the position, and the number of the enemy are considered, which our prisoners (about thirty in number) agree in stating from fifteen hundred to two thousand men, commanded by general Morgan.
I should be extremely wanting both in justice and in gratitude, were I not to request your particular notice of the officers whose names I have mentioned, as well as of major Blanchard, of the royal engineers, and lieutenant Peddie, of the 27th regiment, deputy assistant-quarter-master-general, whose zeal and intelligence I found of the greatest service.
The wounded men are meeting with every degree of attention and humanity by the medical arrangements of staff surgeon Baxter.
The enemy's camp is supplied with a great abundance of provisions, and a very large store of all sorts of ammunition.
On moving to the attack I received a wound, which shortly after my reaching the redoubt, occasioned me such pain and stiffness, that I have been obliged to give over the command of the troops on this side to lieutenant-colonel Gubbins, of the 85th light infantry; but as he has obtained some
re-enforcement since the attack, of sailors and marines, and has taken the best precautions to cover and secure his position, I will be answerable, from my knowledge of his judgment and experience, that he will retain it, until your pleasure and further orders shall be communicated to him.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from vice-admiral Cochrane to John Wilson Croker, esq.
Armide, off Isle au Chat, January 18, 1815.
unsuccessful attempt to gain possession of the enemy's lines near New Orleans on the 8th instant, having left me to deplore the fall of major-general the hon. Sir Edward Pakenham, and major-general Gibbs, and deprived the service of the present assistance of major-general Keane, whe is severely wounded, I send the Plantagenet to England, to convey a despatch from major-general Lambert, upon whom the command of the army has devolved, and to inform my lords commissioners of the admiralty of the operations of the combined forces since my arrival upon this coast.
The accompanying letters, Nos. 163 and 169, of the 7th and 16th ultimo, will acquaint their lordships of the proceedings of the squadron to the 15th December.
The great distance from the anchorage of the frigates and troop-ships to the bayou Catalan, which, from the best information wc could gain, appeared to offer the most secure, and was, indeed, the only unprotected spot whereat to effect a disembarkation; and our means, even with the addition of the captured enemy's gun-vessels, only affording us transport for half the army, exclusive of the supplies that were required, it became necessary, in order to have support for the division that would first land, to assemble the whole at some intermediate position, from whence the second division could be re-embarked in light vessels brought into the lake, as near the bayou as might be practicable, and remain there until the boats could land the first division and return.
Upon the 16th, therefore, the advance, commanded by colonel Thornton, of the 85th regiment, was put into the gun-vessels and boats, and captain Gordon of the Seahorse proceeded with them, and took post upon the Isle aux Poix, a small swampy spot at the mouth of the Pearl river, about thirty miles from the anchorage, and nearly the same distance from the bayou, where major-general Keane, rear-admiral Codrington, and myself, joined them on the following rlayj meeting the gun-vessels and boats returning to the shipping for truops and supplies of stores and provisions.
The hon. captain Spencer, of the Carron, and lieutenant Peddy, of the quarter-master-general's department, who were sent to reconnoitre the bayou Catalan, now returned with a favourable report of its position for disembarking the army; having, with their guide, pulled up in a canoe to the head of the bayou, a distance of eight miles, and landed within a mile and a half of the high road to, and about six miles below New Orleans, where they crossed the road without meeting with any interruption, or perceiving the least preparation on the part of the enemy.
The severe changes of the weather, from rain to fresh gales and hard frost, retarding the boats in their repeated passages to and from the shipping, it was not until the 21st that (leaving on board the greater part of the two black regiments and the dragoons) we could assemble troops and supplies sufficient to admit of our proceeding; and on that day we recommenced the embarkation of the second division in the gun-vessels, such of the hired craft as could be brought into the lakes, and the Anaconda, which by the greatest exertions had been got over the shoal passage.
On the 22d these vessels being filled with about two thousand four hundred men, the advance, consisting of about one thousand six hundred men, got into the boats, and at eleven o'clock the whole started, with a fair wind, to cross Lac Borgne. We had not, however, proceeded above two miles when the Anaconda grounded, and the hired craft and
gun-vessels taking the ground in succession before they had got within ten miles of the bayou; the advance pushed on, and at about midnight reached the entrance.
A piquet, which the enemy had taken the precaution to place there, being surprised and cut off, major-general Keane, with rear-admiral Malcolm and the advance, moved up the bayou, and having effected a landing at day-break, in the course of the day was enabled to take up a position across the main road to New Orleans, between the river Mississippi and the bayou.
In this situation, about an hour after sun-set, and before the boats could return with the second division, an enemy's schooner of fourteen guns, and an armed ship of sixteen guns, having dropped down the Mississippi, the former commenced a brisk cannonading, which was followed up by an attack of the whole of the American army. Their troops were, however, beaten off, and, obliged to retire with considerable loss, and major-general Keane advanced somewhat beyond his former position. As soon as the second division was brought up, the gun-vessels and boats returned for the remainder of the troops, the small armed seamen and marines of the squadron, and such supplies as were required.
On the 26th, major-general sir E. Pakenham and major-general Gibbs arrived at head-quarters, when the former took command of the army.
The schooner which had continued at intervals to annoy the troops, having been burnt on the 27th by hot shot from our artillery, and the ship having warped farther up the river, the following day the general moved forward to within gun-shot of an intrenchment which the enemy had newly thrown up, extending across the cultivated ground from the Mississippi to an impassable swampy wood on his left, a distance of about one thousand yards.
It being thought necessary to bring heavy artillery against this work, and also against the ship which had cannonaded the army when advancing, guns were brought up from the shipping, and on the 1st instant batteries were opened; but our fire not having the desired effect, the attack was deferred until the arrival of the troops under major-general Lambert, which were daily expected.
Major-general Lambert, in the Vengeur, with a convoy of transports, having on board the 7th and 43d regiments, reached the outer anchorage on the 1st, and this re-enforcement was all brought Up to the advance on the 6th instant, while preparations were making for a second attack, in the proposed plan for which it was decided to throw a body of men across the river to gain possession of the enemy's guns on the right bank. For this purpose the canal by whkh we were enabled to conduct provisions and stores towards the camp, was widened and extended to the river, and about fifty barges, pinnaces, and cutters, having, in the day of the 7th, been tracked under cover and unperceived, close up to the bank, at night the whole were dragged into the Mississippi, and placed under the command of captain Roberts, of the Meteor.
The boats having grounded in the canal, a distance of three hundred and fifty yards from the river, and the bank being composed of wet clay thrown out of the canal, it was not until nearly daylight that, with the utmost possible exertions, this service was completed.
The 85th regiment, with a division of seamen under captain Money, and a division of marines under major Adair, the whole amounting to about six hundred men, commanded by col. Thornton, of the 85th regiment, were embarked and landed on the right bank of the river without opposition, just after daylight; and the armed boats moving up the river as the troops advanced, this part of the operations succeeded perfectly; the enemy having been driven from every position, leaving behind him seventeen pieces of cannon.
The great loss however sustained by the principal attack having induced general Lambert to send orders to colonel Thornton to retire after spiking the guns and destroying the carriages, the whole were re-embarked and brought back, and the boats, by a similar process of hard labour, were again dragged into the canal, and from thence to the bayou, conveying at the same time such of the wounded as it was thought requisite to send off to the ships.
Major-general Lambert having determined to withdraw the army, measures were taken to re-embark the whole of the sick and wounded that it was possible to move, and the stores, ammunition, ordnance, &c. with such detachments of the army, seamen, and marines, as were not immediately wanted; in order that the remainder of the army may retire unincumbered, and the last divison be furnished with sufficient means of transport.
This arrangement being in a forward state of execution, I quitted head-quarters on the 14th instant, leaving rear-admiral Malcolm to conduct the naval part of the operations in that quarter, and I arrived at this anchorage on the 16th, where I am arranging for the reception of the army, and preparing the fleet for further operations.
I must, in common with the nation, lament the loss which the service has sustained by the death of major-general the hon. sir Edward Pakenham, and major-general Gibbs. Their great military qualities were justly estimated while living, and their zealous devotion to our country's welfare, will be cherished as an example to future generations.
In justice to the officers and men of the squadron under my command who have been employed upon this expedition, I cannot omit to call the attention of my lords commissioners of the admiralty to the laborious exertions and great privations which have been willingly and cheerfully borne, by every class, for a period of nearly six weeks.
From the 12th of December, when the boats proceeded to the attack of the enemy's gun-vessels, to the present time, but very few of the officers or men have ever slept on board their ships.
The whole of the army, with the principal part of its provisions, its stores, artillery, ammunition, and the numerous necessary appendages, have been all transported from the shipping to the head of the bayou, a distance of seventy miles, chiefly in open boats, and are now re-embarking by the same process. The hardships, therefore, which the boats crews have undergone, from their being kept day and night continually passing and repassing in the most changeable and severe weather, have rarely been equalled; and it has been highly honourable to both services, and most gratifying to myself, to observe the emulation and unanimity which has pervaded the whole.
Rear-admiral Malcolm superintended the disembarkation of the army, and the various services performed by the boats; and it is a duty that I fulfil with much pleasure, in assuring their lordships that his zeal and exertions upon every occasion could not be surpassed by any one. I beg leave also to offer my testimony to the unwearied and cheerful assistance afforded to the rear-admiral by captains sir Thomas M. Hardy, Dashwood, and Gordon, and the several captains and other officers. Rear-admiral Codrington accompanied me throughout the service, and I feel much indebted for his able advice and assistance.
Captain sir Thomas Troubridge, and the officers and seamen attached, under his command, to the army, have conducted themselves much to the satisfaction of the generals commanding. Sir Thomas Troubridge speaks in the highest terms of the captains and other officers employed under him, as named in his letter (a copy of which is enclosed) reporting their services. He particularly mentions captain Money, of the Travc, who I am much concerned to say, had both bones of his leg broken by a musket shot, advancing under a heavy fire to the attack of the battery that was afterwards carried.
The conduct of captain Money at Washington and near Baltimore, where he was employed with the army, having before occasioned my noticing him to their lordships, I beg leave now to recommend him most strongly to their protection. The wound that he has received not affording him any probability of his being able to return to his duty for a considerable time, I have given him leave to go to England; and shall intrust to him my despatches.
I have not yet received any official report from the captain of the Nymph, which ship, with the
named in the margin, were sent into the Mississippi, to create a diversion in that quarter.
The bombs have been for some days past throwing shells into fort Plaquemine, but I fear without much effect. I have sent to recall such of them as are not required for the blockade of the river.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
Letter from capt. Thomas Troubridge to vice-admiral Cochrane.
Head-quarters near New Orleans, January 12, 1815.
The conduct and exertions of the officers and seamen which yon did me the honour to place under my command to serve with the army on shore, having been such as to meet very general approbation, I feel it a duty I owe to them to make such known to you, and to particularize the exertions of captains Money, Rogers, and Westphall.
I cannot sufficiently express the high sense I entertain of the seal and activity of lieutenant Scott, of the Tonnant, and lieutenant Fletcher ef the Norge, who, on all occasions, have shown themselves most deserving officers.
Captains Money and Rogers, who were detached across the river, again report the exertion and gallantry of lieutenant Scott, and also of Mr. Woolcombe, midshipman of his majesty's ship Tonnant, who particularly distinguished themselves in leading their men under a heavy fire to the battery that was carried. It is with infinite regret that I report the severe wound captain Money received while on this service. To lieutenants Wroote, of the Royal Oak, and Franklin, of the Bedford, with the many other officers employed, every praise is due.
I have the honour to be, &c.
Letter from general Lambert to earl Bathurst.
His Britannic Majesty's shift Tonnant, off Chandeleur's island, January 28th, 1815.
After maturely deliberating on the situation of this army, after the command had unfortunately devolved upon me, on the 8th instant, and duly considering what probability now remained of carrying on with success, on the same plan, an attack against New Orleans, it appeared to mc that it ought not to be persisted in. I immediately communicated to vice-admiral sir A. Cochrane that I did not think it would be prudent to make any further attempt at present, and that I recommended re-embarking the army as soon as possible, with a view to carry into effect the other objects of the force employed upon this coast; from the 9th inst. it was determined that the army should retreat, and I have the satisfaction of informing your lordship that it was effected on the nighf of the 18th inst. and ground was taken up on the morning of the 19th on both sides of the bayone, or creek, which the troops had entered on their disembarkation, fourteen miles from their position before the enemy's line, covering New Orleans, on the left bank of the Mississippi, and one mile from the entrance into Lac Borgne: the army remained in bivouac until the 27th instant, when the whole were re-embarked.
In stating the circumstances of this retreat to your lordship, I shall confidently trust that good order and discipline ever existed in this army, and that zeal for the service, and attention was ever conspicuous in officers of all ranks. Your lordship is already acquainted with the position the army occupied, its advanced post close up to the enemy's, and the greater part of the army were exposed to the fire of the batteries which was unremitting day and night since the 1 st of January, when the position in advance was taken up. The retreat was effected without being harassed in any degree by the enemy; all the sick and wounded (with the exception of eighty, whom it was considered dangerous to remove), field artillery, ammunition, hospital and other stores of every description, which had been landed on a very large scale were brought away, and nothing fell into the enemy's hands, excepting six iron eighteen-pounders, mounted on sea carriages, and two carronades, which were in position on the left bank of the Mississippi; to bring them off at the moment the army was retiring was impossible, and to have done it previously would have exposed the whole force to any fire the enemy might have sent down the river. These batteries were of course destroyed, and the guns rendered perfectly unserviceable; only four men were reported absent next morning, and those, I suppose, must have been left behind and have fallen into the hands of the enemy: but when it is considered the troops were in perfect ignorance of the movement, until a fixed hour during the night, that the picquets did not move off till half-past three o'clock in the morning, and that the whole had to retire through the most difficult new made road, cut marshy ground, impassable for a horse, and where, in many places, the men could only go in single files, and that the absence of men might be accounted for in so many ways, it would be rather a matter of surprise the number was so few.
An exchange of prisoners has been effected with the enemy upon very fair terms, and their attention to the brave prisoners, and wounded, that have fallen into their hands, has been kind and humane, I have every reason to believe.
However unsuccessful the termination of the late service the army and navy have been employed upon, has turned out, it would be injustice not to point out how much praise is due to their exertions; ever since the 13th December, when the army began to move from the ships, the fatigue of disembarking and bringing up artillery and supplies from such a distance has been incessant; and I must add, that owing to the exertions of the navy, the army has never wanted provisions. The labour of the seamen and soldiers was particularly conspicuous on the night of the 7th inst. when fifty boats were dragged through a canal into the Mississippi, in which there were only eighteen inches of water, and I am confident that the vice-admiral sir Alexander Cochrane, who suggested the possibility of this operation, will be equally ready to admit this, as well as the hearty co-operations of the troops on all occasions.
From what has come under my own observation since I joined this army, and from official reports that have been made to me, I beg to call your lordship's attention to individuals who, from their station, have rendered themselves peculiarly conspicuous. Major Forrest, at the head of the quarter-master-general's department, I cannot say too much of. Lieutenant Evans and Peddie of the same, have been remarkable for their exertions and indefatigability; sir John Tylden, who had acted in the field as assistant adjutant-general with me (lieutenant-colonel Stovin having been wounded on the 23d ult. though doing well, not as yet being permitted to take active service), has been very useful; on the night of the 7th, previous to the attack, rear-admiral Malcolm reports the great assistance he received from him in forwarding the boats into the Mississippi; captain Wood, of the 4th regiment, deputy assistant adjutant-general, has filled that situation since the first disembarkation of the troops with zeal and attention.
During the action of the 8th inst. the command of the 2d brigade devolved upon lieutenant-colonel Brooke, 4th regiment, that of the 3d upon colonel Hamilton, 5th West India regiment, and the reserve upon colonel Blayken, royal fusileers; to all these officers I feel much indebted for their service. Lieutenant-colonel Dickson, royal artillery, has displayed his usual abilities and assiduity; he reports to me his general satisfaction of all the officers under his command, especially major Munro, senior officer of the royal artillery, previous to his arrival, and of the officers commanding companies.
Lieutenant-colonel Burgoyne, royal engineers, afforded me every assistance that could be expected from his known talents and experience; that service lost a very valuable and much esteemed officer in lieutenant Wright, who was killed when reconnoitring on the evening of the 31st ultimo.
Lieutenant-colonel Mein, of the 43d, and lieutenant-colonel Gubbins, 85th regiment, field officers of the piquets on the 18th, have great credit for the manner in which they withdrew the outposts on the morning of the 19th under the direction of colonel Blakeney, royal fusileers.
I request in a particular manner to express how much this army is indebted to the attention and diligence of Mr. Robb, deputy inspector of hospitals, and their immediate removal, with such excellent arrangement, that the wounded were all brought off with very favourable circumstance, except such cases as would have rendered their removal dangerous.
Captain sir Thomas Troubridge, royal navy, who commanded a battalion of seamen, and who was attached to act with the troops, rendered the greatest service by his exertions in whatever way they were required; colonel Dickson, royal artillery, particularly mentions how much he was indebted to him.
The conduct of two squadrons of the 14th light dragoons, latterly under the command of lieutenant-colonel Baker, previously of major Mills, has been the admiration of every one, by the cheerfulness with which they have performed all descriptions of service. I must also mention the exertions of the royal staff corps under major Todd so reported by the deputy-quarter-master-general.
Permit me to add the obligations I am under to my personal staff. Lieuteuant the honourable Edward Curzon, of the royal navy, who was selected as a naval aid-de-camp to the commanding officer of the troops on their first disembarkation, each of whom have expressed the satisfaction they had in his appointment, to which I confidently add my own.
Major Smith, of the 95th regiment, now acting as military secretary, is so well known for his zeal and talents, that I can with great truth say, that I think he possesses every qualification to render him hereafter one of the brightest ornaments of his profession.
I cannot conclude without expressing how much the army is indebted to rear-admiral Malcolm, who had the immediate charge of landing and re-embarking the troops; he remained on. shore to the last, and by his abilities and activity smoothed every difficulty.
I have the honour to be, sir, &c.
P. S. I regret to have to report that during the night of the 25th, in very bad weather, a boat containing two officers, viz. lieutenant Brydges and cornet Hammond, and thirty-seven of the 14th light dragoons, unfortunately fell into the hands of the enemy, off the mouth of the Rigolets. I have not been able to ascertain correctly the particular circumstances.
Return of casualties in action with the enemy near New Orleans, on the 23d and 24th December, 1814.
General staff — 1 lieutenant-colonel, 1 major, 1 lieutenant wounded.
Royal artillery — 2 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant, 7 rank and file missing.
Royal engineers, sappers and miners — 1 rank and file missing.
4th foot — I captain, 1 lieutenant, 1 sergeant, 1 drummer, 1 rank and file killed; 1 sergeant, 2 drummers, 8 rank and file wounded; 2 rank and file missing.
35th ditto — 2 captains, 11 rank and file, killed; 1 captain, 3 lieutenants, 4 sergeants, 2 drummers, 57 rank and file, wounded; 1 lieutenant, 1 ensign, 1 sergeant, 16 rank and file, missing.
93d do — 1 rank and file, wounded.
95th foot — 6 sergeants, 17 rank and file, killed; 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 6 sergeants, 34 rank and file, wounded; 1 major, 2 sergeants, 39 rank and file, missing.
Total — 4 captains, 1 lieutenant, 7 sergeants, 1 drummer, 33 rank and file, killed; 1 lieutenant-colonel, I major, 2 captains, 8 lieutenants, 10 sergeants, 4 drummers, 141 rank and file, wounded; I major, I lieutenant, 1 ensign, 3 sergeants, 58 rank and file, missing.
names of officers killed, wounded, and missing.
4th foot — captain F. J. Johnstone, lieutenant John Southerland.
21st do — captain W. Conran.
85th do — captains C. Grey and C. Harris.
General staff — lieutenant-colonel Stovin, 28th foot, assistant adjutant-general, severely but not dangerouly; major Hooper, 87th foot, deputy assistant adjutant-general severely (leg amputated), lieutenant D. Evans, 3d dragoons, deputy assistant quartermaster-general, severely.
Royal artillery — lieutenant J. Christie, severely.
4th foot — lieutenant T. Moody, severely.
89th foot — captain James Knox, lieutenants G. Willings, F. Maunsell, and W. Hickson, severely.
95th foot — captain W. Hallen, lieutenant D. Forbes, severely; lieutenant W. J. G. Farmer, slightly.
85th do — lieutenant W. Walker, and ensign G. Ashton.
95th do — major Samuel Mitchell.
Return Of Casualties Between The 25th And 31st December, 1814.
Royal artillery — 4 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant, 5 rank and file wounded.
Royal engineers, sappers and miners, 1 rank and file wounded.
4th foot — 4 rank and file wounded.
21st do — 1 rank and file killed, 1 rank and file wounded.
44th do — 2 rank and file wounded; 1 rank and file missing.
85th do — 1 drummer, 3 rank and file killed; 2 ensigns, 11 rank and file wounded.
93d do — 2 rank and file killed; 5 rank and file wounded.
95th do — 3 rank and file killed; 1 sergeant, 3 rank and file wounded; 1 rank and file missing.
1st West India regiment — 1 captain, killed.
5th do — 1 rank and file killed; 2 rank and file wounded.
Total — 1 captain, 1 drummer, 14 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant, 2 ensigns, 4 sergeants, 34 rank and file wounded; 2 rank and file missing.
names of officers killed and wounded.
1st West India regiment — captain F. Collings.
Royal artillery — lieutenant B. L Poynter, slightly.
85th foot — ensign sir Fred. Eden, Bart, severely (since dead) ensign T. Ormsby, slightly.
return of casualties between the 1st and 5th january, 1815.
Royal artillery — 1 lieutenant, 1 sergeant, 9 rank and file, killed; 12 rank and file, wounded.
Royal engineers sappers and miners — 1 lieutenant, killed.
21st foot — 1 rank and file killed; one lieutenant, 4 rank and file wounded.
44th do — 1 lieutenant, 1 rank and file killed; 3 rank and file Wounded.
85th do — 2 rank and file killed; 2 lieutenants, 4 rank and file wounded.
93d do. foot — 1 sergeant, 8 rank and file killed; 1 lieutenant, 10 rank and file wounded.
95th do — 1 rank and file killed; 2 rank and file missing.
5th West India regiment — 4 rank and file killed; 2 rank and file wounded.
Total — 3 lieutenants, 2 sergeants, 27 rank and file killed; 4 lieutenants, 40 rank and file wounded; 2 rank and file missing.
names of the officers killed and wounded.
Royal artillery — lieutenant A. Ramsay. Royal engineers — lieutenant P. Wright. 44th foot — lieutenant John Blakeney.
21st foot — lieutenant J. Leavock, slightly. 85th do — lieutenant R. Carlton, severely; lieutenant J. W. Boys, slightly.
93d do — lieutenant A. Phaup, severely, (since dead.)
Letter from general Lambert to earl Bathurst.
Head-Quarters, Isle Dauphine, February 14th, 1815.
My despatch, dated January 29th, will have informed your lordship of the re-embarkation of this force, which was completed on the 30th; the weather came on so bad on that night, and continued so until the 5th of February, that no communication could be held with the ships at the inner anchorage, a distance of about seventeen miles.
It being agreed between vice-admiral sir Alexander Cochrane and myself that operations should be carried towards Mobile, it was decided that a force should be sent against fort Bowyer, situated on the eastern point of the entrance of the bay, and from every information that could be obtained, it was considered a brigade would be sufficient for this object, with a respectable force of artillery. I ordered the second brigade, composed of the 4th, 21st and 44th regiments, for this service, together with such means in the engineer and artillery departments as the chief and commanding officer of the royal artillery might think expedient. The remainder of the force had orders to disembark on Isle Dauphine, and encamp; and major-general Keane, whom I am truly happy to say has returned to his duty, superintended their arrangement.
The weather being favourable on the 7th for the landing te the eastward of Mobile Point, the ships destined to move on that service sailed under the command of captain Ricketts, of the Vengeur, but did not arrive in sufficient time that evening to do more than determine the place of disembarkation, which was about three miles from fort Bowyer.
At daylight the next morning the troops got into the boats, and six hundred men were landed under lieutenant-colonel Debbeig, of the 44th, without opposition, who immediately threw out the light companies under lieutenant Bennett, of the 4th regiment, to cover the landing of the brigade. Upon the whole being disembarked, a disposition was made to move on towards the fort, covered by the light companies. The enemy was not seen until about one thousand yards in front of their works; they gradually fell back, and no firing took place until the whole had retired into the fort, and our advance had pushed on nearly to within three, hundred yards. Having reconnoitred the forts with lieutenant colonels Burgoyne and Dickson, we were decidedly of opinion, that the work was formidable only against an assault; that batteries being once established, it must speedily fall. Every exertion was made by the navy to land provisions, and the necessary equipment of the battering train and engineer stores. We broke ground on the night of the 8th,. and advanced a firing party to within one hundred yards of the fort during the night. The position of the batteries being decided upon the next day, they were ready to receive their guns on the night of the 10th, and on the morning of 11th the fire of a battery of four eighteen-pounders on the left, and two eight-inch howitzers on the right, each about one hundred yards distance, two six-pounders at about three hundred yards, and eight small cohorns advantageously placed on the right, with intervals between of one hundred and two hundred yards, all furnished to keep up an incessant fire for two days, were prepared to open. Preparatory to commencing, I summoned the fort, allowing the commanding officer half an hour for decision upon such terms as were proposed. Finding he was inclined to consider them, I prolonged the period, at his request, and at three o'clock the fort was given up to a British guard, and British colours hoisted; the terms being signed by major Smith, military secretary, and captain Ricketts, R. N. and finally approved of by the vice-admiral and myself, which I have the honour to enclose. I am happy to say our loss was not very great; and we are indebted for this, in a great measure, to the efficient means attached to this force. Had we been obliged to resort to any other mode of attack, the fall could not have been looked for under such favourable circumstances.
We have certain information of a force having been sent from Mobile, and disembarked about twelve miles off, in the night of the 10th, to attempt its relief; two schooners with provisions, and an intercepted letter, fell into our hands, taken by captain Price, R. N. stationed in the bay.
I cannot close this despatch without naming to your lordship again lieutenant-colonels Dickson, royal artillery, and Burgoyne, royal engineers, who displayed their usual zeal and abilities; and lieutenant Bennet, of the 4th, who commanded the light companies and pushed up close to the enemy's works.
Captain hon. R. Spencer, R. N. who had been placed with a detachment of seamen under my orders, greatly facilitated the service in every way by his exertions.
From captain Ricketts, of the R. N. who was charged with the landing and the disposition of the naval force, I received every assistance.
Fort Bowyer, February 14th, 1815.
Return of ordnance, ammunition and stores, captured from the enemy in this place, on the 12th instant:
- 1 twenty-four-pounder, 2 nine-pounders, outside the fort.
- Iron — 3 thirty-two-pounders, 8 twenty-four-pounders, 6 twelve pounders, 5 nine-pounders.
- Brass — 1 four-pounder.
- Mortar — 1 eight-inch.
- Howitzer — 1 five-and-a-half-inch.
- Thirty-two-pounder — 856 round, 64 grape, 11 case.
- Twenty-four-pounder — 851 round, 176 bar, 286 grape, 84 case.
- Twelve-pounder — 535 round, 74 grape, 439 case.
- Nine-pounder — 781 round, 208 grape, 429 case.
- Six-pounder — 15 round, 75 bar, 13 case.
- Four-pounder — 231 round, 38 grape, 147 case.
- Shells — 25 eight-inch, 74 five-and-a-half-inch.
- 183 hand-grenades.
- 5,519 pounds powder.
- 1 triangle gin, complete.
- 16,976 musket ball-cartridges.
- 500 flints.
- 351 muskets, complete, with accoutrements.
Ass. Com. Royal Artillery.
Lt. Col. Com. Royal Artillery.
Return of casualties in the army under the command of major general Lambert, employed before fort Bowyer, between the 8th and 12th of February, 1815.
- Royal sappers and miners — 1 rank and file wounded.
- 4th foot — 8 rank and file killed; 2 Serjeants, 13 rank and file wounded.
- 21st foot — 2, Serjeants, 2 rank and file killed; 1 rank and file wounded.
- 40th foot — 1 rank and file killed; 1 rank and file wounded.
- Total — 13 killed, 18 wounded.
D. A. G.
Return of the American garrison of fort Bowyer, which surrendered to the force under major-general Lambert, 11th February, 1815.
1 field-officer, 3 captains, 10 subalterns, 2 staff, 16 Serjeants, 16 drummers, 327 rank and file, 20 women, 16 children, 3 servants not soldiers.
D. A. G.
letters found on board the st. lawrence at the time of her surrender to the chasseur privateer.
From colonel Malcolm to rear-admiral Malcolm.
Cumberland Island, 5th February, 1815.
I received your letter of the 5th ult. it is written before your last attack on that place, but I most sincerely hope you will ultimately succeed. From all accounts New Orleans is very strong: the enemy will have gained a great confidence in themselves from their success. What a disappointment it will be in England should you fail — the chance of failure has not been calculated on, and from the force employed it has been made too sure at first. I have no opinion of either the Indians or black new-raised corps: the former in this country carry on a most furious war — murder and desolation mark their track — there is no hope but flying, or resistance to the last moment of life: this is what every one says of the Florida Indians, of course the inhabitants of all descriptions would fear to come near you. There is a report here that neither the 21 st or 44th regiments behaved well, but as a report I treat it. I should be sorry to hear two British regiments slurred in an
From colonel Malcolm to rear-admiral Malcolm.
Cumberland Island, 11th February, 1815.
I hope we may hear from you in a short time, and of your success against the place you are now before — (New Orleans.) It will repay the troofs for all their trouble and fatigues! I do not expect, either war or peace, that we will move from this island this winter; if the war goes on, a garrison must be left here in charge of the island.
From sir Thomas Cochrane, of the Surprise frigate, to captain Pigot, off New Orleans.
Cumberland Island, February 12th, 1815.
I came here just two days too late to share in the good things going on. Old Somerville was senior, and ordered the attack on St. Mary's, which Barrie executed. The prize-money will be about thirty thousand pounds, not more. Had our force been sufficient, the next movement would have been against Savannah, but not mustering above a thousand bayonets, we were content to keep possession of this island, which we are placing in a state of defence. Our operations will, I suppose, be shortly put a stop to by our friend, Jemmy Madison, as peace or war now depends on him: the commissioners at Ghent having signed, and the prince regent ratified, the terms of a peace, and hostilities will cease as soon as he does the same. We hope, in the mean time, better luck will attend you at New Orleans than has hitherto done, and that you will have time to give general Jackson a trimming.
From sir Thomas Cochrane to sir Thomas Troubridge, off New Orleans.
North End Cumberland Island, February 12th, 1815.
this will reach head-quarters in time for the St. Lawrence, who sails immediately for your part of the world with the news of peace being concluded with this country, but of which I should think you will receive earlier intelligence direct from England. We are in daily expectation of a flag of truce to inform us of Mr. Madison's having ratified the treaty, on his doing which hostilities will immediately cease. I confess myself by no means sorry for this event. I think we have had quite enough of war for some years to come, although I should have wished we had made the Yankees more sensible of our power and ability to punish them, should they again provoke us. As it is, except the injury done to their trade, we have little to boast of. We are all very much grieved to learn the disasters in your quarter. Our loss seems to have been immense; and from the reports we pick up, one is led to believe there was not much prospect of success at the commencement of the attack. We are most particularly unfortunate in our general officers on all occasions. I am afraid general Power and the regiment with him, will not be with you in time to render any service. He was at Bermuda on the 24th ult. at which period the Statira had not arrived.
I came here six weeks ago, and found St. Mary's had been taken two days before my arrival, which, of course, cuts me out of what has been captured. Barrie commanded the party landed; old Somerville was senior officer, the admiral having only arrived the day before me, in consequence of being blown off the coast by strong northwest gales on his way from the Chesapeake. It was at first supposed, as is usual on all these occasions, that a great deal of money would be made; but if they clear thirty thousand pounds, it will be as much as they will do.
From admiral Cockburn to captain Evans.
Head-Quarters, Cumberland Island, llth February, 1815.
No general, however, as you now know, has come
here; you have had them all your way, and though I have learnt by a few hasty lines the unfortunate result of your first endeavours against New Orleans, yet excepting as far as relates to the poor generals and to the gross numbers you lost, I know no particulars, not even which of my many friends amongst you are dead or alive, or which have broken bones or whole skins. I trust, however, it will prove that you are amongst the latter, and I hope you will when at leisure favour me with a detailed account of all that has passed in your neighbourhood.
We have been more fortunate here in our small way. We have taken St. Mary's, a tolerably rich place, and with little loss have managed to do much damage to the enemy, and we are now in tolerable security, upon a large fertile island in Georgia, though an ugly account of peace being signed (the particulars of which I have sent to sir admiral Cochrane) seems to promise a speedy dismissal to us from this coast.
From Mr. Swainson to lieutenant Douglas, of H. M. brig Sophie, off New Orleans.
9th February, 1815.
We had some fine fun at St. Mary's; the bombs were at the town, and had plenty of plunder. How are you off for tables, and chests of drawers, &c?
From J. Gallon to J. O'Reily, esq. on board H. M. ship Tonnant, off New Orleans.
Cumberland Island, 9th February, 1815.
We have had fine fun since I saw you. What with the Rappahannock and various other places, we have contrived to pick up a few trifling things, such as mahogany tables, chests of drawers, &c.
From John Miller to Mr. Thomas Miller, 75 Old Gravel Lane, St. George's, East London.
H. M. ship Lacedemonian, off land, February 12th, 1815.
We have lately been employed with the squadron under admiral Cockburn, and have taken Cumberland Island, and the town of St. Mary's, from the Yankees. Our troops and sailors behaved very well; part of the black regiment employed on this service acted with great gallantry. Blacky had no idea of giving quarters; and it was with difficulty the officers prevented their putting the prisoners to death. The Yankee riflemen fired at our men in ambush; blacky, on the impulse of the moment, left the ranks, and pursued them into the woods, fighting like heroes. A poor Yankee, disarmed, begged for mercy. Blacky replied, "he no come in bush for mercy," and immediately shot him dead!
From J. R. Glover to captain Westful, of the Anaconda.
Head-Quarters, Cumberland Island, 1st February, 1815.
have established our head-quarters here, after ransacking St. Mary's, from which we brought property to the amount of fifty thousand pounds, and had we two thousand troops, we might yet collect a good harvest before peace takes place. My forebodings will not allow me to anticipate either honour or profit to the expedition, of which you form a part, and I much fear the contrary, yet most fervently do I hope my forebodings may prove groundless. The admiral (Cockburn) is as active as ever, and success in general attends his undertakings.
From captain Napier, of the Euryalus frigate, to captain Gordon, of the Seahorse.
Off Cape Henry, January 24th, 1815.
Here I am in Lynhaven bay, the clippers sailing every day, and losing them for want of fast sailers. All our prizes are well disposed of. I have had a good deal to do with them, and not many thanks as you may suppose from the agents. I have petitioned the prince regent in behalf of the whole of us, for a good tlice of prize-money, and I hope to succeed. You, I suppose, will not be displeased at it. Excuse this hasty scrawl, I am in a d——d bad humour, having just returned from an unsuccessful chase.
negro stealing, &c.
After the news of peace had reached the infamous Cockburn, at Cumberland Island, the following depredations were committed on St. Simons, by the British. The respectable editor of the Savannah Republican introduces the facts to the public by assuring us that "implicit reliance may be placed" on the following statement:
"St. Simons, February 13, 1815.
"As the only person, at present, capable of making a just representation of the losses sustained by the inhabitants of St. Simons, I beg leave to state them to you, with a view that it may be presented to the proper department.
Major Butler, (Hampton,) one hundred and fifty negroes: his dwelling-house rifled; groceries and every other article removed to head-quarters (Cumberland.)
James Hamilton will be ruined as to his negro property; his store pillaged; machinery employed in ginning the seed cotton destroyed; the whole of his packed cotton removed.
A. C. Wylly, forty negroes taken, with his cotton.
E. Matthews, twenty-six negroes and six bales of cotton.
J. H. Giekie, fifteen negroes, several bales of cotton.
John Couper, the number of negroes unknown.
In truth, it is impossible to state circumstantially the loss which the unfortunate inhabitants have sustained. Cattle slaughtered in every direction; property of every description held in requisition or destroyed. My feelings prevent my adding to this hateful catalogue of wo."
To the above I will subjoin a list of the negroes taken from the shores of the Mississippi by the British, whom they refused tp surrender, under the pretext of considering them as deserters, as it has been seen in this work.
Besides the loss of their negroes, some of the planters above named have experienced other heavy losses, such as the whole of their cattle, horses, buildings, furniture, &c. to the amount of more than two hundred thousand dollars.
The following document was omitted in its proper place; it is deemed, however, of too much importance to be excluded entirely.
Directed by major-general Jackson to be read at the head of each of the corps composing the line below New Orleant, Jan. 21, 1815.
Citizens and Fellow-soldiers,
The enemy has retreated, and your general has now leisure to proclaim to the world what he has noticed with admiration and pride — your undaunted courage, your patriotism, and patience, under hardships and fatigues. Natives of different states, acting together, for the first time, in this camp; differing in habits and in language, instead of viewing in these circumstances the germ of distrust and division, you have made them the source of an honourable emulation, and from the seeds of discord itself have reaped the fruits of an honourable union. This day completes the fourth week since fifteen hundred of you attacked treble your number of men, who had boasted of their discipline, and their services under a celebrated leader, in a long and eventful war — attacked them in their camp, the moment they had profaned the soil of freedom with their hostile tread, and inflicted a blow which was a prelude to the final result of their attempt to conquer, or their poor contrivances to divide us. A few hours was sufficient to unite the gallant band, though at the moment they received the welcome order to march they were separated many leagues, in different directions from the city. The gay rapidity of the march, and the cheerful countenances of the officers and men, would have induced a belief that some festive entertainment, not the strife of battle, was the object to which they hastened with so much eagerness and hilarity. In the conflict that ensued, the same spirit was supported, and my communication to the executive of the United States have testified the sense I entertained of the merits of the corps and officers that were engaged. Resting on the field of battle, they retired in perfect order on the next morning to these lines, destined to become the scene of future victories, which they were to share with the rest of you, my brave companions in arms. Scarcely were your hues a protection against musket-shot, when on the 28th a disposition was made to attack them with all the pomp and parade of military tacties, as improved by those veterans of the Spanish war.
Their batteries of heavy cannon kept up an incessant fire; their rockets illuminated the air; and under their cover two strong columns threatened our flanks. The foe insolently thought that this spectacle was too imposing to be resisted, and in the intoxition of his pride he already saw our lines abandoned without a contest — how were those menacing appearances met?
By shouts of defiance, by a manly countenance, not to be shaken by the roar of his cannon, by the glare of his firework rockets; by an artillery served with superior skill, and with deadly effect. Never, my brave friends, can your general forget the testimonials of attachment to our glorious cause, of indignant hatred to our foe, of affectionate confidence in your chief, that resounded from every rank, as he passed along your line. This animating scene damped the courage of the enemy; he dropped his scaling ladders and fascines, and the threatened attack dwindled into a demonstration, which served only to show the emptiness of his parade, and to inspire you with a just confidence in yourselves.
The new year was ushered in with the most tremendous fire his whole artillery could produce: a few hours only, however, were , necessary for the brave and skilful men who directed our own to dismount his cannon, destroy his batteries, and effectually silence his fire. Hitherto, my brave friends, in the contest on our lines, your courage had been passive only; you stood with calmness, a fire that would have tried the firmness of a veteran, and you anticipated a nearer contest with an eagerness which was soon to be gratified.
On the 8th of January the final effort was made. At the dawn of day the batteries opened and the columns advanced. Knowing that the volunteers from Tennessee and the militia from Kentucky were stationed on your left, it was there they directed their chief attack.
Reasoning always from false principles, they expected little opposition from men whose officers even were not in uniform, who were ignorant of the rules of dress, and who had never been caned into discipline — fatal mistake! a fire incessantly kept up, directed with calmness and with unerring aim, strewed the field with the bravest officers and men of the column which slowly advanced, according to the most approved rules of European tactics, and was cut down by the untutored courage of American militia. Unable to sustain this galling and unceasing fire, some hundreds nearest the entrenchment called for quarter, which was granted — the rest retreating, were rallied at some distance, but only to make them a surer mark for the grape and canister shot of our artillery, which, without exaggeration, mowed down whole ranks at every discharge; and at length they precipitately retired from the field.
Our right had only a short contest to sustain with a few rash men who fatally for themselves, forced their entrance into the unfinished redoubt on the river. They were quickly dispossessed, and this glorious day terminated with the loss to the enemy of their commander-in-chief and one major-general killed, another major-general wounded, the most experienced and bravest of their officers, and more than three thousand men killed, wounded and missing, while our ranks, my friends, were thinned only by the loss of six of our brave companions killed, and seven disabled by wounds — wonderful interposition of Heaven! unexampled event in the history of war!
Let us be grateful to the God of battles who has directed the arrows of indignation against our invaders, while he covered with his protecting shield the brave defenders of their country.
After this unsuccessful and disastrous attempt, their spirits were broken, their force was destroyed, and their whole attention was employed in providing the means of escape. This they have effected; leaving their heavy artillery in our power, and many of their wounded to our clemency. The consequences of this short, but decisive campaign, are incalculably important. The pride of our arrogant enemy humbled, his forces broken, his leaders killed, his insolent hopes of our disunion frustrated — his expectation of rioting in our spoils and wasting our country changed into ignominious defeat, shameful flight, and a reluctant acknowledgment of the humanity and kindness of those whom he had doomed to all the horrors and humiliation of a conquered state.
On the other side, unanimity established, disaffection crushed, confidence restored, your country saved from conquest, your property from pillage, your wives and daughters from insult and violation — the union preserved from dismemberment, and perhaps a period put by this decisive stroke to a bloody and savage war. These, my brave friends, are the consequences of the efforts you have made, and the success with which they have been crowned by Heaven.
These important results have been effected by the united courage and perseverance of the army; but which the different corps as well as the individuals that composed it, have vied with each other in their exertions to produce. The share they have respectively had, wiH be pointed out in the general order accompanying this address. But the gratitude, the admiration of their country, offers a fairer reward than that which any praises of the general can bestow, and the best is that of which they can never be deprived, the consciousness of having done their duty, and of meriting the applause they will receive.
Head-Quarters, 7th Military District, Camp below New Orleans,
Adjutant general's Office, January 21.
Before the camp at these memorable lines shall be broken up, the general thinks it a duty to the brave army which has defended them, publicly to notice the conduct of the different corps which compose it. The behaviour of the regular troops, consisting of parts of the 7th and 44th regiments of infantry, and the corps of marines, all commanded by colonel Ross, has been such as to merit his warm approbation. The 7th regiment was led by major Peyre, and the 44th by captain Baker, in the action of the 23d, in a manner that does those officers the highest honour. They have continued through the campaign to do their duty with the same zeal and ability with which it was commenced. On that occasion the country lost a valuable officer in the death of lieutenant M'Clellan of the 7th infantry, who fell while bravely leading his company Lieutenant Dupuy of the 44th, although severely wounded in this action, returned in time to take a share in all the subsequent attacks.
To the Tennessee mounted gunmen, to their gallant leader, brigadier-general Coffee, the general presents his warmest thanks, not only for their uniform good conduct in action, but for the wonderful patience with which they have borne the fatigue, and the perseverance with which they surmounted the difficulties of a most painful march, in order to meet the enemy — a diligence and zeal to which we probably owe the salvation of the country. Ordinary activity would have brought them too late to act the brilliant part they have performed in the defeat of our invaders. All the officers of that corps have distinguished themselves; but the general cannot avoid mentioning the name of lieutenant-colonel Lauderdale who fell on the night of the 23d — and those of colonels Dyer, Gibson and Elliott, who were wounded, but disdaining personal considerations, remained firm to their duty.
The cavalry from the Mississippi territory, under their enterprizing leader major Hinds, was always ready to perform every service which the nature of the country enabled them to execute. The daring manner in which they reconnoitred the enemy on his lines, excited the admiration of one army and the astonishment of the other.
Major-general Carrol, commanding the detachment of West Tennessee militia, has shown the greatest zeal for the service, a strict attention to duty, and an ability and courage that will always recommend him to the gratitude of his country. His troops have, since the lines were formed, occupied and defended the weakest part of them, and borne, withowt a murmur, an encampment on a marshy and unhealthy soil. In the memorable action of the 8th January, the chief effort of the enemy was directed against them; but their valour, and that of the brave men who supported them, (general Coffee's brigade on the left, and a part of the Kentucky troops on the right) soon made it clear that a rampart of highminded men is a better defence than the most regular fortification.
General Adair, who, owing to the indisposition of general Thomas, brought up the Kentucky militia, has shown that troops will always be valiant when their leaders are so. No men ever displayed a more gallant spirit than these did under that most valuable officer. His country is under obligations to him.
The general would be ungrateful or insensible to merit, if he did not particularly notice the conduct of the officers and men who so bravely supported and so skilfully directed his artillery. Colonel M'Rea, in the action of the 23d, showed, as he always does, great courage. Lieutenant Spotts, under whose immediate direction our artillery had been placed, led it to action with a daring courage worthy of admiration. Captain Humphrey commanded the first battery on our right — the service is greatly indebted tf> that officer, not only for the able and gallant manner in which he directed his fire, but for the general activity he displayed in his department.
Lieutenant Norris of the navy, with Mr. Walker Martin and a detachment of seamen, was stationed at the 2d battery; and lieutenant Crawley, with Mr. W. Livingston (master's mate) with a similar detachment, were stationed at a thirty-two-pounder, which was remarkably well directed — they performed their duty with the zeal and bravery which has always characterized the navy of the United States. Captains Dominique and Belluche, lately commanding privateers at Barataria, with part of their former crew and many brave citizens of New Orleans, were stationed at Nos. 3 and 4. The general cannot avoid giving his warm approbation of the manner in which these gentlemen have uniformly conducted themselves while under his command, and of the gallantry with which they have redeemed the pledge they gave at the opening of the campaign to defend the country. The brothers Lafitte have exhibited the same courage and fidelity; and the general promises that the government shall be duly apprized of their conduct. Colonel Perry, deputy quarter-master-general, volunteered his services at No. 6 — he was ably aided by lieutenant Kerr of the artillery — his battery was well served, bravely supported, and greatly annoyed the enemy — Nos. 8 and 9 were directed by lieutenant Spotts with his usual skill and bravery, assisted by Mr. Cheaveau.
The general takes the highest pleasure in noticing the conduct of general Garrigue de Flaujac, commanding one of the brigades of militia of this state, and member of the senate. His brigade not being in the field as soon as the invasion was known, he repaired to the camp and offered himself as a volunteer for the service of a piece of artillery, which he directed with the skill which was to be expected from an experienced artillery officer: disdaining the exemption afforded by his seat in the senate, he continued in this subordinate but honourable station, and by his example as well as his exertion, has rendered essential services to his country. Mr. Sebastian Hiriard of the same body, set the same example, served a considerable time in the ranks of the volunteer battalion, and afterwards as adjutant of the coloured troops. Major Plauche's battalion of volunteers, though deprived of the valuable services of major Carmac, who commanded them, by a wound which that officer received in the attack of the 28th of December, have realized all the anticipations which the general had formed of their conduct. Major Plauche, and major St. Geme of that corps, have distinguished themselves by their activity, their courage, and their zeal; and the whole corps have greatly contributed to enable the general to redeem the pledge he gave, when at the opening of the campaign he promised the country, not only safety, but a splendid triumph over its insolent invaders. The two corps of coloured volunteers have not disappointed the hopes that were formed of their courage and perseverance in the performance of their duty. Majors Lacoste and Daquin, who commanded them, have deserved well of their country. Captain Savary's conduct has been noticed in the account rendered of the battle of the 23d, and that officer has sinee continued to merit the highest praise. Captain Beale's company of the city riflemen has sustained by its subsequent conduct the reputation it acquired in the action of the 23d. Colonel de la Ronde, of the Louisiana militia, has been extremely serviceable by his exertions, and has shown great courage, and an uniform attachment to the cause of the country.
General Humbert, who offered his services as a volunteer, has continually exposed himself to the greatest dangers, with his characteristic bravery, as has also the Mexican field-marshal, Don Juan de Anaya, who acted in the same capacity. The general acknowledges the important assistance he has received from commodore Patterson, as well by his professional exertion, as the zealous co-operation of his department during the whole course of the campaign. Captain Henley, on board of the Carolina, and afterwards in directing the erection of several batteries at the bayou �nd oh the right bank of the river, was of great utility to the arrty. Lieutenant Alexis, of the navy, stationed in the navy arsenal, was indefatigable in exertions to forward to the array every thing which could facilitate its operations — his seal and activity deserve the notice of the government. Major Nicks, who, by an accidental wound was deprived of the pleasure of commanding the 7th regiment during the campaign, was continually employed in the fort, and furnished tl�c ammunition and the artillery that was wanted with the greatest activity and promptitude. To the volunteers of the Mississippi territory, and to the militia of the remoter parts of this state, who have arrived since the decisive action of the 8th, the general tenders his thanks, and is convinced that nothing but opportunity was wanting to entitle them to the praises that have been merited by the rest of the army. Captain Ogden's troop of horse was peculiarly useful by their local knowledge of the ground on which they acted; and the small detachment of the Attacapas dragoons, stationed near head-quarters, were indefatigable in performing all the duties which devolved on them.
The general would not do justice to his staff if he did not bestow deserved praise on the adjutant-general, colonel Butler, and bis assistant, major Chotard, for their zeal and activity in the important department of service confided to them, and for the bravery which led them wherever danger or duty required their presence. The vigilance, courage, and attention to duty, exhibited during the campaign by colonel Haynes, and his two assistants, majors Davis and Hampton, have been appreciated, as they deserved to be, by the general.
The general's aids-de-camp, Thomas L. Butler and captain John Reed, as well as his volunteer aids, Messrs. Livingston, Duncan, Grymes, Duplessis and major Davezac de Castera, the judge advocate, have merited the thanks of the general by the calm and deliberate courage they have displayed on every occasion, and in every situation that called it forth. The topographical engineer, major Tatum, exhibited all the ardour of youth in the hour of peril, united to the experience acquired by his long services. The chief engineer, major Lacarriere Latour, has been useful to the army by his talents and bravery. The same praises are due to his assistants, captain Lewis Livingston and Mr. Latrobe. The medical staff has merited well of the country, and the general would not do justice to his own feelings were he to withhold from Dr. Kerr, hospital surgeon, who volunteered his services, and Dr. Flood, the just tribute of applause deserved by them for their medical skill and personal bravery. The quarter-master's department, though deprived of the personal exertions of colonel Piatt, who was wounded in the night action of the 23d, performed 'well their duties. Major-general Villeré and brigadier Morgan have merited the approbation of the general by their unwearied attention since they took the field.
The large mortar was ably directed by captain Lefebre and by Mr. Gilbert. Captain Blanchard was very useful as an engineer, and merits the general's praise for the celerity and skill with which he erected the battery which now commands the river, on the right of the camp. Mr. Busquet and Mr. Ducoin, of major St. Geme's company, displayed great knowledge and dexterity as artillerists. To the whole army the general presents the assurance of his official approbation, and of his individual regard. This splendid campaign will be considered as entitling every man who has served in it to the salutation of his brother in arms.
- Seven killed and six wounded.
This was in the action on the line — afterwards skirmishing was kept up, in which a few more of our men were lost. (Author’s note.)
All the testimony.
Major Villeré did not introduce any testimony in his behalf. (Author’s note).
This ‘armed sloop,’ which required a division of barges to capture mounted one four-pounder, and carried eight men. (Author’s note).
This position was a supine one. The reserve, and all those of the advanced columns, who escaped slaughter, were ordered to crouch down in the stubble, where they lay flat upon their faces till night. This new evolution was executed in order to avoid the fire of our artillery. (Author’s note).
Nymph, Herald, Ætna, Meteor, Thistle, Pigmy. (Author’s note).
In this letter of the colonel's there was a lamentation expressed that bis share of the prize-money at St. Mary's did not exceed five hundred pounds! (Author’s note).
Text prepared by
- Cody Crump
- Bruce R. Magee
- Luke Murray
- Matt Parker
- Tyler Pfister
Latour, Major Arséne Lacarriére.
Historical Memoir of the War in West Florida and Louisiana in 1814-15. With an Atlas. Trans. H. P. Nugent. Philadelphia: John Conrad & Co., 1816. Internet Archive. 29 Sept. 2010. Web. 9 July 2013. <http:// archive. org/ details/ historical memo00lato>.