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industrious, frugal and honest men than all other things put together. And I will here say, that it does not become a democrat to ridicule and abuse them: for they were the first supporters of the democratic principle. The puritans were the first and fast friends of the people.
A notable personage in our company was “Sergeant John,” a fullblooded Indian. He had served as a private among the “eightmonths men," but resused to enlist again till the title of sergeant was promised him. His rank was merely nominal. He received the title at roll-call, and was content. He was regular in the discharge of his duties as a soldier; but held no communion with a soul in the company. In summer he never slept in the tent with his mess, but in the open air; and in winter he chose a retired though cold corner of the barrack. The tenor of his thoughts neither I nor any body else could ever learn.
On two occcasions I owed my life to Sergeant John. At the battle of Long Island, as we were retreating towards the famous Mill Dam, I received a shot in my foot that put an end to my progress. My fellow-townsmen passed me by, but Sergeant John pla ed me on his shoulder, and succeeded in crossing the dam before the heat of the burning mill became so intense as to cut off further passage. The mill had been fired to prevent the enemy from crossing.
I was an inmate of the hospital for some time, and joined my company just before New York was given up. After my recovery I could get no nearer Sergeant John than before. He continued to live in the solitude of his own originality.
When we lay at White Plains, Sergeant John and myself, with about twenty others, were stationed as a guard in a clearing, about three-fourths of a mile in advance of the lines. So far as I could judge, we were placed there for the express purpose of being shot or captured by the first stray party of British that might come that way. The woods were so thick on every side that we could see nothing unless within the limits of the clearing. The whole British army might have passed us without our knowledge.
It was our fortune to be captured by a party of light-horse, just after sunset. We were entirely surrounded before we knew itwhich I looked upon as fortunate, since it saved a few lives—our own included-whose loss would in no way have affected the fore tunes of the war. The capture was not indeed a very glorious one, nor was my curiosity to examine the enemy's camp, and their ac. commodations for prisoners, very great. Still, small as it was, it was in a fair way to be gratified.
As we were marched off I had instinctively placed myself by the side of Sergeant John, who took his capture very composedly, as though it was a matter of indifference to which camp he directed his steps. He soon managed to attract my attention, and enjoined silence by a gesture that escaped the observation of our captors. As it began te grow dark we passed along the ridge of a steep bank or ledge. On the very brink a thick growth of cedar bushes concealed its depth, or rather its height, from view. Here John leaped over the bushes down the bank, bidding me to follow him, which I instinctively did, and found myself about thirty feet nearer the centre of gravity than my captors. It was emphatically a leap in
As I gathered myself up I saw my companion standing with a drawn knife in his hand. A few shots were fired from above; but the darkness concealed us from view: and presently two who had dismounted sprang down the ledge in pursuit—but both received the Indian's knife before they could regain their feet. We next heard a number set off at full speed, and concluded their design was to reach us by some other point of descent. My companion seized my arm, and we set off in the direction of the coming horsemen. A few paces brought us to a stream of water, its banks closely lined with trees. John plunged into the water, and crawl. ed beneath the projecting roots of a tree. This was a way of concealment not at all congenial to my habits; but cold water is preferable to cold lead, so I was fain to plunge in. I was soon in the arms of John, who counteracted the tendency of my body to rise to the surface, and gave me a breathing hole amid the roots of the tree.
It was altogether an uncomfortable place; but then it was the best quarters we could get. We soon heard horsemen approaching, —whereat the water felt decidedly warmer. They passed us, but did not return, as Sergeant John seemed to expect. I say seemed, for not a word did he speak during the whole of that night, which was the longest one known, according at least to my experience, during the revolutionary war. Not till just before day-break did we leave our bath. I sometimes suspected that John was asleep, but found that all attempts to extricate myself were vain. When we did emerge, I was unable to walk. John placed me on his shoulders, and we reached the American camp in safety. A fever was the consequence, but then it was better to have a fever among one's friends than in a prison-ship.
Another exploit of Sergeant John, one that caused him to be promoted to the rank of Ensign by vote of the company, though he still retained the rank of Sergeant on the roll, it may be well to relate. While the two armies lay at White Plains, our soldiers uscd to pass, by a circuitous route, beyond the enemy's line, for what purpose I hardly remember. It was, however considered as a sort of exploit; and hence became a rather frequent practice. On one occasion a party, of which Sergeant John was one, passed the night in the rear of the enemy, at the house of a Dutchman, who prosessed great attachment to the American cause. They took the precaution to keep him within doors during the night, but in the morning, so firm was their conviction of his honesty, they permitted him to go for his cows; when the old scoundrel hastened directly to the British camp and gave information.
A party of Hessians were sent to capture our soldiers. The officer in command, from his chamber window, happened to see them descending a hill at a little distance in front of the house, and immediately ran down for the purpose of alarming the men, who lodged in the barn. When he came to the back door, through a crevice, he saw a stout Hessian, who must have approached in advance of his comrades, standing ready to cut off his retreat and discharge his piece as soon as the door should be opened. The officer had presence of mind enough to run to the window and call to his men to make their escape. This, it may well be imagined, they proceeded to do with no superfluous delay, with the exception of Ser. geant John, who, catching sight of the stout Hessian trooper by the door, and deeming it his duty to deliver his brother officer, stole coolly up and made no bones of shooting the villain—that is, the Hessian-through the head; and they then succeeded, though not without some difficulty, in making their escape before the rest of the troop arrived.
ADDRESS TO “ANTHONY'S NOSE."
All hail, primeval Patriarch of Noses !
From drenching rain, or wildly whistling wind,
About that bed on which he lies reclined,
Mana-hattan, says Chalmer, was the original name of the Hudson river.
VOL. V. NO. XIV — FEBRUARY, 1839.
Or from Heaven's fire, which, through the scudding rack,
Thou art not like that fearful nose which cast
And generations vanished to repose,
From chaos forth thy bold, colossal Nose!
Some say thou art a thing of senseless stone,
His wings abroad, and lashed these iron shores, I've heard thee sneeze !—when starting from his bed,
The sailor cried—“ Lord! how the thunder roars !”
How many a strange and passing wondrous sight
*For an account of this celebrated nose, see an extract from that famous author, Slawkenbergius, in Tristram Shandy.
+“ There were giants on the earth in those days.” Genesis, chap. 7, v. 4. *" It must be known, then, that the nose of Anthony, the trumpeter, was of a very lusty size, strutting boldly from his countenance like a mountain of Golconda
Acknowledging below nor lord nor law
Tell me, thou gnomon on fair Nature's face,
Retain'st thou still of ancient times the smell,
Of Dutchmen smok'd, as if bound by a spell
Monarch of noses ! the Almighty hand
Ne'er fashioned thee for a colonial slave,-
To the Republic independence gave,
Yet, if to thee the privilege was given,
The hour to witness when a nation sprung
The noblest energies of her young mind,
as a monument. Thereof, he (Stuyvesant) gave the name of ' Anthony's Nose' to a stout promontory in the neighbourhood, and it has continued to be called Anthony's Nose ever since that day.-Knickerbocker's New York, vol. 2, 79. 93