ページの画像
PDF
ePub

The Indians, believing themselves certain of victory, and forgetting their usual precaution of covering themselves with trees or bushes, rushed forward with much impetuosity. Being thus fully exposed, and coming within reach, they were vigorously charged in front, while two companies, making a sudden movement, and running round a hill, which concealed their approach, attacked them in flank. They were thus thrown into great confusion; and, in retreating, they were pursued to such a distance that they did not venture to rally. Colonel Bouquet resumed his march, and reached Fort Pitt without farther molestation. In this skirmishing warfare the troops suffered much from the want of water and the extreme heat of the weather. The loss by the enemy was 1 captain, 2 lieutenants, 1 serjeant, 1 drummer, and 44 rank and file, killed; and 1 captain, 3 lieutenants, 1 volunteer, 5 serjeants, 1 drummer, and 49 rank and file, wounded. Of the Royal Highlanders, Lieutenant John Graham, and James Mackintosh, 1 serjeant, and 26 rank and file, were killed; Captain John Graham of Duchray, Lieutenant Duncan Campbell, 2 serjeants, 2 drummers, and 30 rank and file, wounded. Of Montgomery's Highlanders, 1 drummer and 5 privates were killed; and Lieutenant Donald Campbell and Volunteer John Peebles, 3 serjeants, and 7 privates, wounded.

The Royal Highland Regiment passed the winter in Fort Pitt; and early in the summer of 1764 was again employed under Colonel Bouquet, now appointed Brigadier-General. Continued encroachments on the territories of the Indians increased their irritation to a high degree, and they retaliated with great fury on the back settlers. To repress their attacks two expeditions were ordered; one from Niagara, under Sir William Johnson, and another under Brigadier-General Bouquet. The latter consisted of eight companies of the 42d, the light infantry of the 60th regiment, and 400 Virginian marksmen, with a detachment from Maryland and Pennsylvania, having their faces painted, and their clothes made in the Indian fashion. In this service the troops traversed many hundred miles, cutting their way through thick forests, and frequently attacked by, and attacking, skirmishing parties of the Indians, who were at length so harassed with this constant state of warfare, that they sued for a cessation of hostilities. This was granted, and was soon followed by a peace, which was not interrupted for many years. If this species of warfare was harassing to the Indians, it must have been no less so to the troops, who were allowed no rest from the month of July to January 1765, when they returned to Fort Pitt, two months after the winter had commenced with great severity. Although forced to march through woods of immense extent, where the snow had attained a depth unknown in Europe, it is a remarkable fact, that, in these six months, three of which they were exposed to extreme heat, and two to an equal excess of cold, with very little shelter from either extreme, and frequently disturbed by an active, though not a formidable enemy, the Highlanders did not leave a man behind from fatigue or exhaustion. * Three men died of sickness; and when they returned to Fort Pitt, there were only nineteen men under charge of the surgeon, f

The regiment was now in better quarters than they had been for several years. They were much reduced in numbers, as might have been expected from the extent, nature, and variety of service in which, amidst the torrid heats of the West Indies, and the rigorous winters of North America, they had been for so many years engaged. During the following year they remained in Pennsylvania; and, in the month of July 1767, embarked at Philadelphia for Ireland. Such of the men as chose to remain in America, rather than return home, were permitted to volunteer into other regiments. The second battalion had been reduced in 1763, and 1 captain, 12 lieutenants, and 2 ensigns of the first battalion, were placed on half-pay. Captain Small, * who was reduced to half-pay, but immediately put on the fullpay of the Scotch Fusileers, being deservedly popular among the men, drew along with him into that regiment a great proportion of those who volunteered for America. The volunteers were so numerous, that, along with those who had been previously discharged and sent home as disabled, and others who were discharged in America, where they settled, they reduced the number of the regiment to a very small proportion of that which had left Scotland.

• la the month of August 1765, Captain (afterwards General Sir Thomas) Stirling was detached with Lieutenants Macculloch and Edington and 100 men, and sent first down the Ohio, and then 1500 miles up the Mississippi, to Fort Chartres in the Illinois, of which he took possession in October. He occupied the fort during the winter and spring: in June he returned to Philadelphia, and joined the regiment. Captain Stirling must have performed this service with great prudence and attention; for, after a journey and voyage of more than 3000 miles, and an absence of ten months, he brought his whole detachment back in perfect health, and without an accident.

t Regimental Reports.

By their courage in the field, and their integrity and orderly conduct in quarters, this body of men seem to have made the same impression on the Americans as elsewhere. One of the numerous proofs of this favourable impression will be found in the following extracts from an article published in the Virginia Gazette, dated the 30th July 1767. "Last Sunday evening, the Royal Highland Regiment embarked for Ireland, which regiment, since its arrival in America, has been distinguished for having undergone most amazing fatigues, made long and frequent marches through an unhospitable country, bearing excessive heat and severe cold with alacrity and cheerfulness, frequently encamping in deep snow, such as those that inhabit the interior parts of this province do not see, and which only those who inhabit the most northern parts of Europe can have any idea of, continually exposed in camp and on their marches to the alarms of a savage enemy, who, in all their attempts, were forced to fly." The article then proceeds: "And, in a particular manner, the freemen of this and the neigh

* Afterwards well known and highly respected as a general officer and lieutenant-governor of Guernsey.

bouring provinces have most sincerely to thank them for that resolution and bravery with which they, under Colonel Bouquet, and a small number of Royal Americans, defeated the enemy, and ensured to us peace and security from a savage foe; and, along with our blessings for these benefits, they have our thanks for that decorum in behaviour which they maintained during their stay in this city, giving an example that the most amiable behaviour in civil life is no way inconsistent with the character of the good soldier; and for their loyalty, fidelity, and orderly behaviour, they have every wish of the people for health, honour, and a pleasant voyage." *

Having continued the history of the regiment to the termination of hostilities, and its safe arrival in a friendly country, I subjoin a general list of the total loss in killed and wounded during the war.

[graphic][subsumed][ocr errors][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed]

Comparing the loss sustained by this regiment in the field with that of other corps, it has generally been less than theirs, except in the unfortunate affair of Ticonderoga. I have conversed with several officers who served in the corps at that period, and they uniformly accounted for the moderate loss from the celerity of their attack, and the use of the broad sword, which the enemy could never withstand. This, likewise, was the opinion of an old gentleman, one of the original soldiers of the Black Watch, in the ranks of which, although a gentleman by birth and education, he served till the peace of 1748: he informed me that, although it was believed at home that the regiment had been nearly destroyed at Fontenoy, the thing was quite the reverse; and that it was the subject of general observation in the army, that their loss should have been so small, considering how actively they were engaged in different parts of the field. "On one occasion," said the respectable veteran, who was animated with the subject, " a brigade of Dutch were ordered to attack a rising ground, on which were posted the troops called the King of France's own Guards. The Highlanders were to support them. The Dutch conducted their march and attack as if they did not know the road, halting, and firing, and halting, every twenty paces. The Highlanders, losing all patience with this kind of fighting, which gave the enemy such time and opportunity to fire at their leisure, dashed forward, passed the Dutch, and the first ranks giving their firelocks to the rear rank, they drew their swords, and soon drove the French from their ground. When the attack was concluded, it was found that of the Highlanders not above a dozen men were killed and wounded, while the Dutch, who had not come up at all, lost more than five times that number."

• Virginia Gazette, July n«T.

During the preceding war, the regiment was fortunate in possessing an excellent corps of officers, men of respectable character, education and family; several of whom were distinguished for superior professional acquirements, and for their accomplishments as gentlemen. The number of officers in the year 1759, including the chaplains and medical staff of both battalions, was 83. Of this number, seven

« 前へ次へ »