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ing from our minds, as much as possible, all impressions produced by Arnold's subsequent history, and we are surprised to find, after the hostility manifested against him by the council of Pennsylvania, and their extraordinary measure to possess the public mind against him, how venial are the trespasses of which he stood convicted.
He may have given personal offense by his assuming vanity; by the arrogant exercise of his military authority; he may have displeased by his ostentation, and awakened distrust by his speculating propensities ; but as yet his patriotism was unquestioned. No turpitude had been proved against him; his brilliant exploits shed a splendor round his name, and he appeared before the public, a soldier crippled in their service. All these should have pleaded in his favor, should have produced indulgence of his errors, and mitigated that animosity which he always contended had been the cause of his ruin.
The reprimand adjudged by the court - martial was administered by Washington with consummate delicacy. The following were his words, as repeated by M. de Marbois, the French secretary of legation:
“Our profession is the chastest of all: even the shadow of a fault tarnishes the lustre of our finest achievements. The least inadvertence may rob us of the public favor, so hard to be acquired. I reprehend you for having forgotten, that, in proportion as you had rendered yourself for
ARNOLD'S NEW PROJECT.
midable to our enemies, you should have been guarded and temperate in your deportment towards your fellowcitizens.
“Exhibit anew those noble qualities which have placed you on the list of our most valued commanders. I will myself furnish you, as far as it may be in my power, with opportunities of regaining the esteem of your country.”
A reprimand so mild and considerate, accompanied by such high eulogiums and generous promises, might have had a favorable effect upon Arnold, had he been in a different frame of mind; but he had persuaded himself that the court would incline in his favor and acquit him altogether, and he resented deeply a sentence, which he protested against as unmerited. His resentment was aggravated by delays in the settlement of his accounts, as he depended upon the sums he claimed as due to him, for the payment of debts by which he was harassed. In following the matter up, he became a weary, and probably irritable, applicant at the halls of Congress, and, we are told, gave great offense to members by his importunity, while he wore out the patience of his friends ; but public bodies are prone to be offended by the importunity of baffled claimants, and the patience of friends is seldom proof against the reiterated story of a man's prolonged difficulties.
In the month of March, we find him intent on a new and adventurous project. He had proposed to the Board of Admiralty an expedition, requiring several ships of war and three or four hundred land troops, offering to take command of it should it be carried into effect, as his wounds still disabled him from duty on land. Washington, who knew his abilities in either service, was disposed to favor his proposition, but the scheme fell through from the impossibility of sparing the requisite number of men from the army. What Arnold's ultimate designs might have been in seeking such a command, are rendered problematical by his subsequent conduct. On the failure of the project, he requested and obtained from Washington leave of absence from the army for the summer, there being, he said, little prospect of an active campaign, and his wounds unfitting him for the field.
3OUTH CAROLINA THREATENED.--ITS CONDITION AND POPULATION.-STORKY
VOYAGE OF SIR HENRY CLINTON.-LOSS OF HORSES. —CHARACTER OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL TARLETON. — FLEET ARRIVES AT TYBEE. — SIR HENRY CLINTON ADVANCES UPON CHARLESTON.- LINCOLN PREPARES FOR DEFENSE.-COMMODORE WHIPPLE.-GOVERNOR RUTLEDGE.-FOREBODINGS OF WASHINGTON.-EMBARKATION OF BRITISH TROOPS AT NEW YORK.-WASHINGTON SENDS DE KALB WITH REINFORCEMENTS.-HIS HOPEFUL LETTER TO STEUBEN,
HE return of spring brought little alleviation to the sufferings of the army at Morristown. All
means of supplying its wants or recruiting its ranks were paralyzed by the continued depreciation of the currency. While Washington saw his forces gradually diminishing, his solicitude was intensely excited for the safety of the Southern States. The reader will recall the departure from New York, in the latter part of December, of the fleet of Admiral Arbuthnot with the army of Sir Henry Clinton, destined for the subjugation of South Carolina. “The richness of the country,” says Colonel Tarleton, in his history of the campaign, “its vicinity to Georgia, and its distance from General Washington, pointed out the advantage and facility of its con
quest. While it would be an unspeakable loss to the Americans, the possession of it would tend to secure to the crown the southern part of the continent which stretches beyond it.” It was presumed that the subjugation of it would be an easy task. The population was scanty for the extent of the country, and was made up of emigrants, or the descendants of emigrants, from various lands and of various nations : Huguenots, who had emigrated from France after the revocation of the edict of Nantz; Germans, from the Palatinate; Irish Protestants, who had received grants of land from the crown; Scotch Highlanders, transported hither after the disastrous battle of Culloden; Dutch colonists, who had left New York, after its submission to England, and been settled here on bounty lands.
Some of these foreign elements might be hostile to British domination, but others would be favorable. There was a large class, too, that had been born or had passed much of their lives in England, who retained for it a filial affection, spoke of it as home, and sent their children to be educated there.
The number of slaves within the province and of savages on its western frontier, together with its wide extent of unprotected sea-coast, were encouragements to an invasion by sea and land. Little combination of militia and yeomanry need be apprehended from a population sparsely scattered, and where the settlements were widely separated by swamps and forests. Washington