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son. He met general Arnold at the house of a Mr.Smith. While the conference was yet unfinished, day light approached ; and to avoid the danger of discovery, it was proposed, that he should remain concealed till the succeeding night. He is understood to have refused to be carried within the American posts, but the promise made him by Arnold, to respect this objection, was not observed. He was carried within them contrary to his wishes and against his knowledge. He continued with Arnold the succeeding day, and when, on the follow, ing night, he proposed to return to the Vulture, the boatmen refused to carry him, because she had, during the day, shifted her station, in consequence of a gun having been moved to the shore, and brought to bear upon her. This embarrassing circumstance reduced him to the necessity of endeavouring to reach New York by land. Yielding, with reluctance, to the urgent representations of Arnold, he laid aside his regimentals, which he had hitherto worn under a surtout, and put on a plain suit of clothes; and, receiving a pass from the American general, authorising him, under the feigned name of John Anderson, to proceed on the public service, to the White Plains, or lower, if he thought proper, he set out on his return.. He had passed all the guards and posts on the road without suspicion, and was proceeding to New York in perfect security, when, on the 23d of September, one of the three militia-men, who were employed with others in scouting parties between the lines of the two armies, springing suddenly from his covert into the road, seized the reins of his bridle and stopped his horse. Instead of producing his pass, Andre, with a want of self-possession, which can be attributed only to a kind providence, asked the man hastily, where he belonged; and being answered, “to below," replied immediately, “and so do I.” He then declared himself to be a British
officer, on urgent business, and begged that he might not be detained. The other two militia men coming up at this moment, he discovered his mistake ; but it was too late to repair it. He offered a purse of gold and a valuable watch, to which he added the most tempting promises of ample reward and permanent provision from the government, if they would permit him to escape ; but his offers were rejected without hesitation..... . .
The militia men, whose names were John Paulding, David Williams, and Isaac Vanwert, proceed. ed to search him. They found concealed in his boots, exact returns, in Arnold's hand writing, of the state of the forces, ordnance, and defences at West Point and its dependencies; critical remarks on the works, and an estimate of the men ordinarily employed in them, with other interesting papers. Andre was carried before lieutenant colonel Jameson, the officer commanding the scouting parties on the lines, and, regardless of himself, and only anxious for the safety of Arnold, he still maintained the character which he had assumed, and requested Jameson to inform his commanding officer that Anderson was taken. An express was accordingly dispatched, and the traitor, thus becoming acquainted with his danger, escaped..
Major Andre, after his detection, was permitted to send a message to Arnold, to give him notice of his danger; and the traitor found opportunity to escape on board the Vulture, on the 25th of September, 1780, a few hours before the return of Washington, who had been absent on a journey to Hartford, Connecticut. It is supposed, however, that he would not have escaped, had not an express to the commander in chief, with an account of the capture of Andre, missed him by taking a different road from the one which he travelled.
Arnold, on the very day of his escape, wrote a letter to Washington, declaring that the love of his
country had governed him in his late conduct, and requesting him to protect Mrs. Arnold. She was conveyed to her husband at New York, and his clothes and baggage, for which he had written, were transmitted to him. During the exertions which were made to rescue Andre from the destruction, which threatened him, Arnold had the hardihood to interpose. He appealed to the humanity of the commander in chief, an: then sought to intimidate him by stating the situation of many of the principal characters of South Carolina, who had forfeited their lives, but had hitherto been spared through the clemency of the British geneeral. This clemency, he said, could no longer, in justice, be extended to them, should major Andre suffer.
har Arnold was made a brigadier general in the British service; which rank he preserved throughout the war. Yet he must have been held in contempt and detestation by the generous and honourable. It was impossible for men of this description, even when acting with him, to forget that he was a traitor, first the slave of his rage, then purchased with gold, and finally secured by the blood of one of the most accomplished officers in the British army. · One would sụppose that his mind could not have been much at ease; but he had proceeded so far in vice, that perhaps his reflections gave, him but little trouble. "I am mistaken," says Washington, in a private letter, " if, at this time, Arnold is undergoing the torments of a mental hell. He wants feeling. From some traits of his character, which have lately come to my knowledge, he seems to have been so hacknied in crime, so lost to all sense of honour and shame, that while his faculties still enable him to continue his 'sordid pursuits, there will be no time for remorse."
Arnold found it necessary to make some exertions to secure the attachment of his new friends.
With the hope of alluring many of the discontented to his standard, he published an address to the inhabitants of America, in which he endeavoured to justify his conduct. He had encountered the dangers of the field, he said, from apprehension that the rights of his country were in danger. He had acquiesced in the declaration of independence, though he thought it precipitate. But the rejection of the overtures, made by Great Britain in 1778, and the French alliance, had opened his eyes to the ambitious views of those, who would sacrifice the happiness of their country to their own aggrandizement, and had made him a confirmed loyalist. He artfully mingled assertions, that the principal members of congress held the people in sovereign contempte . . This was followed in about a fortnight by a proclamation, addressed 6 to the officers and sol. diers of the continental army, who have the real interest of their country at heart, and who are determined to be no longer the tools and dupes of congress or of France." To induce the American officers and soldiers to desert the cause, which they had embraced, he represented that the corps of cavalry and infantry, which he was authorized to raise, would be upon the same footing with the other troops in the British service; that he should with pleasure, advance those, whose valor he had witnessed; and that the private men, who joined him should receive a bounty of three guineas each, besides payment, at the full value, for horses, arms, and accoutrements. His object was the peace, liberty, and safety of America. “You are promised liberty,” he exclaims, “ but is there an individual, in the enjoyment of it sàving your oppressors? Who among you dare to speak or write what he thinks against the tyranny, which has robbed you of your property, imprisons your persons, drags you to the field of battle, and is daily delu
ging your country with your blood?“What," he exclaims again; “ is America now but a land of widows, orphans, and beggars? As to you, who have been soldiers in the continental army, can you at this day want evidence, that the funds of your country are exhausted, or that the managers have applied them to their private uses? In either case you surely can no longer continue in their service with honour or advantage. Yet you have hitherto been their supporters in that cruelty, which, with equal indifference to yours, as well as to the labour and blood of others, is devouring a country, that from the moment you quit their colours, will be redeemed from their tyranny.” :
These proclamations did not produce the effect designed, and in all the hardships, sufferings, and irritations of the war, Arnold remains the solitary instance of an American officer, who abandoned the side first embraced in the contest, and turned his sword upon his former companions in arms. .
He was soon despatched by sir Henry Clinton, to make a diversion in Virginia. With about seventeen hundred men he arrived in the Chesapeake, in January, 1781, and being supported by such a naval force, as was suited to the nature of the service, he committed extensive ravages on the rivers and along the unprotected coasts. It is said, that while on this expedition, Arnold enquired of an American captain, whom he had taken prisoner, what the Americans would do with him if he should fall into their hands. The captain at first declined giving him an answer, but upon being repeatedly urged to it, he said, “Why, sir, if I must "answer your question, you must excuse my tel“ ling you the plain truth: if my countrymen should * catch you, I believe they would first cut off that “lame leg, which was wounded in the cause of free*6'dom and virtue, and bury it with the honours of * war, and afterwards hang the remainder of your