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prisoners of war.* Cornwallis, mentioning the ludicrous affair in a letter to Tarleton, adds sarcastically : “Rugeley will not be made a brigadier.” The unlucky colonel never again appeared in arms.
The first care of General Greene was to reorganize his army. He went to work quietly but resolutely: called no councils of war; communicated his plans and intentions to few, and such only as were able and willing to aid in executing them. “If I cannot inspire respect and confidence by an independent conduct,” said he, “it will be impossible to instill discipline and order among the troops.” His efforts were successful; the army soon began to assume what he termed a military complexion.
He was equally studious to promote harmony among his officers, of whom a number were young, gallant, and intelligent. It was his delight to have them at his genial but simple table, where parade and restraint were banished, and pleasant and instructive conversation was promoted; which, next to reading, was his great enjoyment. The manly benignity of his manners diffused itself round his board, and a common sentiment of affection for their chief united the young men in a kind of brotherhood.
Finding the country round Charlotte exhausted by repeated foragings, he separated the army into two divisions. One, about one thousand strong, was com
* Williams' Narrativo.
SUFFERINGS OF THE ARMY.
manded by Brigadier-general Morgan, of rifle renown, and was composed of four hundred continental infantry, under Lieutenant-colonel Howard of the Maryland line, two companies of Virginia militia under Captains Tripplet and Tate, and one hundred dragoons, under Lieutenant-colonel Washington. With these Morgan was detached towards the district of Ninety-Six, in South Carolina, with orders to take a position near the confluence of the Pacolet and Broad Rivers, and assemble the militia of the country. With the other division, Greene made a march of toilful difficulty through a barren country, with wagons and horses quite unfit for service, to Hicks' Creek, in Chesterfield district, on the east side of the Pedee River, opposite the Cheraw Hills. There he posted himself, on the 26th, partly to discourage the enemy from attempting to possess themselves of Cross Creek, which would give them command of the greatest part of the provisions of the lower country, partly to form a camp of repose ; "and no army," writes he, “ever wanted one more, the troops having totally lost their discipline.”
“I will not pain your Excellency,” writes he to Washington, “with further accounts of the wants and sufferings of this army; but I am not without great apprehension of its entire dissolution, unless the commissary's and quartermaster's departments can be rendered more competent to the demands of the service. Nor are the clothing and hospital departments upon a better footing. Not a shil
ling in the pay chest, nor a prospect of any for months to come. This is really making bricks without straw.”
Governor Rutledge also wrote to Washington from Greene's camp, on the 28th of December, imploring aid for South Carolina. “Some of the stanch inhabitants of Charleston,” writes he, “have been sent to St. Augustine, and others are to follow. The enemy have hanged many people, who, from fear, or the impracticability of removing, had received protections or given paroles, and from attachment to, had afterwards taken part with us. They have burnt a great number of houses, and turned many women, formerly of good fortune, with their children (whom their husbands or parents, from an unwillingness to join the enemy, had left) almost naked into the woods. Their cruelty and the distresses of the people are indeed beyond description. I entreat your Excellency, therefore, seriously to consider the unhappy state of South Carolina and Georgia ; and I rely on your humanity and your knowledge of their importance to the Union, for such speedy and effectual support, as may compel the enemy to evacuate every part of these countries." *
* Correspondence of the Revolution, iii. 188.
HOSTILE EMBARKATIONS TO THE SOUTH.-ARNOLD IN COMMAND.-NECESSITOUS
STATE OF THE COUNTRY.-WASHINGTON URGES A FOREIGN LOAN.--MISSION
a ters made Washindou in the last few chap
H E occurrences recorded in the last few chap
ters made Washington apprehend a design on om the part of the enemy to carry the stress of war into the Southern States. Conscious that he was the man to whom all looked in time of emergency, and who was, in a manner, responsible for the general course of military affairs, he deeply felt the actual impotency of his position.
In a letter to Franklin, who was minister-plenipotentiary at the court of Versailles, he strongly expresses his chagrin. “Disappointed of the second division of French troops, but more especially in the expected naval superiority, which was the pivot upon which everything turned, we have been compelled to spend an inactive campaign
after a flattering prospect at the opening of it, and vigorous struggles to make it a decisive one on our part. Latterly, we have been obliged to become spectators of a succession of detachments from the army at New York in aid of Lord Cornwallis, while our naval weakness, and the political dissolution of a great part of our army, put it out of our power to counteract them at the southward or to take advantage of them here."
The last of these detachments to the South took place on the 20th of December, but was not destined, as Washington had supposed, for Carolina. Sir Henry Clinton had received information that the troops already mentioned as being under General Leslie in the Chesapeake, had, by orders from Cornwallis, sailed for Charleston, to reinforce his lordship; and this detachment was to take their place in Virginia. It was composed of British, German, and refugee troops, about seventeen hundred strong, and was commanded by Benedict Arnold, now a brigadier-general in His Majesty's service. Sir Henry Clinton, who distrusted the fidelity of the man he had corrupted, sent with him Colonels Dundas and Simcoe, experienced officers, by whose advice he was to be guided in every important measure. He was to make an incursion into Virginia, destroy the public magazines, assemble and arm the loyalists, and hold himself ready to coöperate with Lord Cornwallis. He embarked his troops in a fleet of small vessels, and departed on his enterprise animated by the rancorous spirit of a renegade, and prepared, as