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dispensable from a just estimate of his character. It is therefore proper to observe, that, from the very beginning, he was opposed to the policy of coercive measures with America. He was one of the four ministerial lords who sided with Earl Camden in resisting the bill which extended the parliamentary power of Great Britain over her legislative colonies; and also took a decided part in condemning the many arbitrary proceedings by which Wilkes was excluded from the House of Commons. He was therefore an independent and liberal peer, judiciously preserving his duties as a senator and a soldier from admixture; and was therefore prepared, when called into the field, to discharge his professional offices without detraction or demur.
Being appointed by General Howe to command an expedition against the Jerseys, on the 18th of November, 1776, Cornwallis advanced at the head of a force comprising his own regiment, some battalions of grenadiers and light infantry, covered by a squadron of cavalry, and drew within a short distance of Fort Lee, which is the key of the Jerseys. Such was the secrecy and expedition with which this march was effected, that, were it not for the escape of a deserter, who apprised the enemy of his approach, he had certainly made the garrison, to a man, prisoners of war. The movement, however, was not without its -advantages; a confused retreat took place, and he came into possession of all the military stores and provisions in the hold. The Jerseys immediately after fell into his hands, and he was only restrained from the pursuit, and, in all probability, the complete overthrow of the Americans, by engaging them before they could have succeeded in crossing the river Delaware, in consequence of an order from his commander-in-chief, which was severely criti. cised in England as a capital error in the tactics of war.
Thus was the tide of success preserved in these quarters, up to the moment when General Howe determined upon his expedition against Philadelphia. As soon as the army effected a landing in Chesapeake Bay, Lord Cornwallis was despatched at the head of a column to Brandy White River, on which General Washington was posted, in order to protect Philadelphia. His lordship's purpose was to turn the enemy's rear, and get between them and the city; and he succeeded promptly in it, by defeating the force sent to oppose him under General Sullivan:- his public entry into Philadelphia consequently took place on the 24th of September, 1777. Up to the close of this, and during the course of the next, campaign, though the plan of the war left no great opportunities for exertion, the conduct of Earl Cornwallis, as second in command, continued to attract considerable attention.
Many expeditions were set on foot after the reduction of Charlestown, but the chief undertaking was entrusted to his skill... He received instructions to drive out of the province a body of continental troops, under the command of General Burford, who, though too late to succour the siege, yet, by being joined to the cavalry who had escaped the last defeat, had succeeded in keeping the fire of opposition actively formidable in the neighbourhood. With this body he came into close contact on the 1st of June; and upon the same day gave it a complete rout.—The event left him undisputed in the government of South Carolina.
During the peaceful interval that now succeeded, his occupations were eminently discriminative and meritorious; and it was upon this occasion that he first developed that aptitude for civil affairs, which subsequently formed so conspicuous a trait of his capacity. · A board of police was established by him to administer justice, until the regular forms of antient administration could be reorganized with safety; several arrangements were made to promote the general commerce, and facilitate as far as was prudent the exports of the province; an effective militia was enrolled for the common cause; and unremitting preparations were made to forward the attack on the northern provinces. From the gentle activity of these employments he was soon detached by the Americans, who, to the number of six thousand, rapidly advanced under General-Gates, to arrest the progress of British success. Lord Cornwallis resolved to march forward and to meet the movement, and thus the two armies came in sight on the evening of the 15th of August, 1779. At the dawn of the next day, he made his final dispositions for engaging ; his troops, though in. ferior in amount, were admirably posted : a swamp which covered his flank, narrowed itself in front of the army, so as to secure his wings, and render the numbers of the enemy less operative in the attack. Of his advanced line, the right division was commanded by Colonel Webster, and the left by Lord Rawdon, since Marquis of Hastings. Between them stood the artillery, to support either hand, as circumstances might require, and in the rear, covered by the cavalry, was a corps of reserve. The enemy were disposed in a manner somewhat similar; and the attack, commenced by the British, was maintained with such impetuosity, that the Americans were soon broken. They rallied, however, with great gallantry, but were again shocked, and, upon the advance of our second line, finally dispersed. The cavalry completed the defeat, in a pursuit twenty miles distant from the scene of action. One thousand of the enemy fell, and another thousand were taken prisoners; and seven pieces of cannon, with a full train of ordnance and transport waggons, added consequence to the achievement.
To render this decisive victory of still greater service to the cause, Lord Cornwallis dispatched Colonel Tarleton, upon the same evening, against a body of troops under General Souter, who had been extremely troublesomie in cutting off detached parties, and intercepting our convoys. This corps had retreated with the utmost promptitude, as soon as the fate of General Gates became known, and had only halted in great fatigue, for the first time, on the 18th of August, when Tarleton presented himself before them, and, at a single manoeuvre, succeeded in separating them from their arms. Submission and abrupt flight were then their only alternatives, and they immediately took place. Thus the provincial force in the South was utterly crushed, and Lord Cornwallis only waited for supplies, to prosecute his triumph in North Carolina. The interval was far from uselessly employed, and some rigorous measures, justified by the situation of affairs, were efficaciously put in force. Of the many who had sworn allegiance to Great Britain, numbers availing themselves of the hopes which the presence of General Gates and his promising army excited, had thrown themselves into active disloyalty. The estates of all who had thus violated their oaths, were declared to be forfeited; but, in order to temper justice with mercy, a sufficient provision was set apart for the maintenance of their innocent wives and children. Instant death was denounced against all those, who having once avowed their submission to Great Britain, should be afterwards found in arms against her; and a firm re-union between the colony and mother country was confidently expected.
On the 8th of September, Lord Cornwallis began his march to North Carolina, but the ardour of his progress was checked even at the onset, by the loss of a considerable detachment under Major Ferguson, which was surprised by a party of the enemy from the Allegany Mountains, and, almost to a man, either captured or slain. This misfortune, and the unexpected hardships which crowded on him as he advanced, gradually compelled him to turn his steps back on South Carolina, and there reluctantly wait for fresh reinforcements. This march was altogether one of most exemplary fortitude and privation; the provisions were so nearly exhausted, that every soldier was limited to a sparing allowance of corn daily, and once a week a small ration of meatfor the cooking of which there was scarcely any convenience. The country was overflowed by incessant falls of heavy rain ; the men had no tents; and could but seldom find a dry spot of ground on which to kindle a fire. Rank and file, officers and generals, all suffered alike; amongst others Lord Cornwallis fell ill, but he recovered, in October, and arrived with his army safe at Wynnesborough.
The operations of the next campaign were designed upon an entensive and vigorous plan; but the success of the war was hopeless. General Arnold,* who had revolted from the cause of independence, now undertook to produce a powerful effect in the
* The revolt of this general cost the life of Major André, a gallant officer, who has received the honours of a respectable monument in the south aisle of Westminster Abbey, and has therefore a claim upon the notice of this volume. He was originally a merchant's clerk, and in that station distinguished himself by the composition of an ingenious poem, entitled “The CowChase." In the army alike eminent for prudence and courage, he advanced himself, through the different grades of his profession, by merit alone. When the project of detaching Arnold from the Independents was first entertained, he volunteered his serrices for the purpose of carrying on a negotiation. Being captured, however, in disguise, within the American lines, he was tried as a spy, and suffered death with great spirit, on the 2d of October, 1780, in the 29th year of his age. George III. caused his monument to be erected, and by the care of Frederick, Duke of York, his remains were conveyed from America, and deposited near the same spot, on the 28th of November, 1821. The monument is of fine white marble, and consists of a sarcophagus, surmounted by a miserable figure of Britannia in lamentation, with a moping lion at her feet. In front is a piece of bas-relief work representing Washington at his tent, dismissing a flag of truce which came to treat for the Major's life, who is also introduced bound for execution. The sculpture is now in parts mutilated, and by no means a specimen of the finest chiseling.
Chesapeak; and Lord Cornwallis, after scouring the interjacent provinces, was directed to form a junction with him, and then give battle to the Marquis of Fayette, who was at the head of a considerable force. Meanwhile, Sir Henry Clinton placed himself in opposition to General Washington, in the north. After an obstinate fight at Guilford, in which, he proved victorious, and a partial retreat to Wilmington, from a vain hope of receiving fresh supplies, Lord Cornwallis hazarded the completion of his orders, and reached Petersburgh as early as May. He had still to struggle against a much superior strength, but he eluded every obstacle, and made a rapid progress in Virginia. Such was the conjuncture at which Washington devised a scheme which effectually thwarted the campaign, and put a period to the career of Cornwallis. “He managed that a packet of letters should fall into the hands of General Clinton; in which the republican leaders were assured, that the only possible means of saving Virginia from becoming the prize of an officer, fertile in expedients and vigorous in expedition, as experience had proved Lord Cornwallis, was to turn all their strength against New York, and thus prevent the English commander there from forwarding any supplies to his brother generals. No sooner was it discovered that Clinton was thus drawn into fears for his own safety, than Washington marched directly against York Town, where Lord Cornwallis, in obedience to the commands of his superior officer, was idly awaiting the long-promised reinforcements. An investment of the place was made without delay, and the works proceeded rapidly with the additional forces under the Marquis de la Fayette and General Rochambeau. Admiral Graves made an inadequate attempt to relieve the besieged, but was obliged to leave the French fleet in possession of Chesapeak Bay; and the British general was therefore hemmed in on every side, without a prospect of succour, or any sufficient means of withstanding the attack. To attempt to penetrate through such an army of besiegers with his reduced numbers, would, as he conceived, be an unavailable sacrifice of human blood; and in this predicament nothing seemed to remain but a capitulation. The anticipation was of necessity soon brought to issue; and after an absence of five years, he returned to England upon parole. A pamphlet controversy immediately took place between him and Clinton; but