John] 1793-1863 [Russell.

The history of the war, betwee the United States and Great-Britain, which commenced in June, 1812, and closed in Feb. 1815 .. online

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them ; Jackson amidst the galling fire of the enemy,
pulled out the ramrod of his musket, used it as a pick-
er, primed with a cartridge, and fired the cannon.
Perkins having taken off his bayonet, used his gun
as a rammer, and Jackson using his former plan, again
discharged her. Lieut. Armstrong soon fell, and
exclaimed as he lay, ' my brave fellows ^ some of you
may Jail, but you must save the cannon.^ At this time a
number crossed the creek, and entered into the chase,
when they were pursued more than two miles, fleeing
in consternation, throwing away their packs, and left
26 of their warriors dead on the field. This last de-
feat was decisive. In these three engagements our
loss was 20 killed and 7-3 wounded. The loss of the
enemy cannot be exactly ascertained ; 189 of their
warriors were found dead ; but this must fall consid-
erably short of the number killed ; their wounded can
only be guessed at.

I am, sir, with sentiments of respect, Sec.



Ge)i. Jackson to (fov. Hhunt.

Foil Williams, Marrli 31st, 1R14.

[Kr/rac/] SIK — I liiive just relumed from the ex-
petlilioii which I advised you in my hist I was about
to make to the Tallapoosee ; and hasten to acquaint
yon with the good fortune w hich attended it.

I took up the line of march from this place on the
niorning^ of the *2 1st inst. and having- opened .1 passage
of 52 1-2 miles over the ridges which divide the wa-
ters of the two rivers, I reached the bend of the Talla-
poosee, three miles beyond where I had the engage*
meiit of the 2"2d of Jan. and at the southern extremi-
ly of New-Youka, on tlie morning of the 27lh. This
bend resembles in its curvature that of a horse shoe,
and is thence called by that name among the whites.
Nature furni>hes few situations so eligible for defence,
and barbarians have never renden^d one more secui*e
by art. A cross the neck of the bend which leads into it
from the north, they had erected a breastwork ot the
greatest compactness and strength, from live to eight
teet high, and prepared with double port holes very
arlbillv arranged. Tlse figure ot this wall manifisted
no less skill in the projection of it, than ils construc-
tion ; an army could not approach it without being^
ex; osetl to a double and cross tire from tlie enemy, w ho
la> in perfect sccuril> behind it.

In this bend the warriors from Oakfusky, Oakeha-
o^u, New Youka, Hilnbee, the Fish Ponds, and Eu-
faula towns, apprised of our approach, had collected
tlieir strength. Their exact number cannot be as-
certained ; but it is said by the prisoners we have tak-
en to h.i>e been a thousand.

Early on the morning of the 27th, having encampH
ed the preceding night at the distance ot live miles
from them — 1 detailed Gen. Cotiee w ilh the mounted
men and nearly the whole of the Indian force, to
cross the river at a ford about 3 miles below their en**
campinent, and {o surround the bend in such a man-
ner that none of them should escape by altrmpting to
cross tlie river. With the remainder of the forces t


proceeded slowly and in onler, along- the point of
land which led lo th<' front ot'their breast work ; hav-
intr planted my cannon (one six and one three ponn-
der) on an eminenrt' at the distance of 150 or 200
yards from it, I opened a very hnsk fire, playing up*
on the enenriy with the muskets and nfles whenever
they shevved themselves l»eyonrl it; this was kc; t up,
with short interruptions, for ahout two hours, when a
part of the Indian force, and Capt. Kussell's and
Lieut. Bean's companies of sjnes, whi> had accom-
panied Gen. Coffee, cr<»ssed over in canoes Jo the
extremity of the hend, and set tire to the huildinirs
■which were there situated; they then advanced wilh
great gallantry towards the breast work, ai d com-
menced a spiiiled fire upon the enemy b»-hnid it.

Finding that this force, notwithslandni^j the bravery
they displaced, was whollv insufficient lo dislodge
them, and that Gen. Coffee had entirely secured tlje
opposite bank of the river, I now determined to take
their works by storm. The men by ^hoin this was
to 1)6 eff*ected had been waiting with impatience to re-
ceive their order, and hailed it with acclamation.

The spirit which animated them was a sure augury
of the success which was lo follow. The hislorv of
warfare furnishes finv instances of a more brilliant
attack — the regulars led on by their intrepid and skil-
ful commander. Col. Williams, and by the gallant
Major Montgomery, soon gamed possession of the
works in the midst of a most tremendous fire from
behind them, and the mihtia of the venerable Gen.
Doherty's brigade, accompanied them in the charge,
with a vivacity and firmness that would have done
honor to regulars. Tlie enemy were comjiletely rout-
ed. Five hundred and fiity-seven were Jeftdtadon
the peninsula.*

The fighting continued with some severity about
five hours, but we continued to destroy many of them

* Gen. Coffee in his account to Gen. Jackson, say 9, there were
not le^s than 250 killetJ, in atieniijimii to cross the river, which
«uok, aod were nut includeil in tiie above.


who had concealed themselves under the banks of the
river until we were prevented by the night. This
mornins: we killed 16 which had been concealed.— -i
We took 250 prisoners, all women and children ex-
cept two or three. Our loss is 106 wounded, and 26
killed. Major M'Intosh (the Cowetan) who joined
my army with part of his tribe, greatly distinguished

According to my original purpose, I commenced

my return march for fort Williams to-day, and shall,

if I find supplies there, hasten to the Hickory ground.

The power of the Creeks is, I think, for ever broken.

I have th.e honor to be, ^c.




Capt. Porter to the Secretary of the Navy.
U. S. Frigate Essex, Pacific Ocean, July 2d, 1813.

SIR — On the 23d March last, 1 sailed shapping
my course to the northward, and on the 26th of the
same month, fell in with the Peruvian corsair ship
^ereyda, mounting 15 guns : she had a few days be-
fore, captured two American whale ships, the crews
of which (amounting in number to 24 men) were
then detained prisoners on board her ; and they assign
no other motive for the capture, than that they were
the allies of G. Britain, and as such, should capture
all American vessels they could fall in with ; there-
fore, to prevent in future such vexatious proceedings,
I threw all her armament into the sea, liberated the
Ameiicans, and dismissed the Nereyda.

I then proceeded with all possible dispatch for Li-
ma, to intercept one of the detained vessels, which had
parted with the Nereyda only three days before, and
I was so fortunate as to arrive there and recapture her
on the 5th April, at the moment she was entering the
port. This vessel (the ship Barclay, Capt, Gideon


Randall, of New Bedford,) I look undenny protection*
and liave had her with me ever since.

From Lima, J proceeded for the Gahipagos
Island where I captured the f'ollowin«r British Letters ot
marque ships.

Montezuma, — 2 guns, 21 men — Policy, 10 guns,
26 men — Georgiana, guns, 25 men — Atlantic, 8
guns, 24 men — Greenwich, 10 guns, 2omen.

The Georgiana i)enig reputed a very fast sailer, and
apparently well calculated for a cruiser, 1 mounted
16 guns on her and gave the command of her to that
excellent officer, Lieut. John Downes, with a com-
plement of 42 men.

Lieut. Downes joined me at Tumbez, near Guiaquil,
on the coast of Peru, on the 24th June, after captur-
ing three Letter of INIarque ships.

Hector, 11 guns 2.> men — Catharine, 8 gims, 29
men — Rose, 8 gun, ^1 men.

The first had two men killed and six badly wound-
ed in her rencontre with the Georgiana — and I have
found by experience that the Georgiana did not de-
serve the character jjiven of her for sailinuf. I there-
fore shipped her officers and crew to the Atlantic,
and mounted on her 20 guns, with a complement of
60 men, and appointed midshipman Rich. Dashiell,
acting sailing master, on board her; to this vessel!
gave the name of Essex Junior. I also fitted up the
ship Greenwich as a store ship, and mounted on her
20 guns, placing her under the command of Lieut.
Gamble, of the marines. On board her I have put
all the provisions and stores of my other prizes, ex-
cept a supply of three and a half months for each, and
have by this means secured myself a full supply of
every necessary article for seven months. I had hoped
to dispose of my other prizes at Guiaquil : the Govs,
in Peru, however, are excessively alarmed at my iei^-
pearance on the coast, as my fleet amounts now tb
nine sail of vessels, all formidable in their appearance,
and they woidd if they dare, treat us with a hostility
little short of declared enemies.


Indeed, sir, when I compare n»y present situation
with what it was when I doubled Cape Horn, 1 can-^
not but esteem myself fortunate in an extraordinary
degrte. Tiiere my ship was shattered by tempestu-
ous weather, and destitute of every thing* ; my offit?
cers aid crew half starved, naked, and worn out with
fatigue. Now, sir, my ship is in prime order, abuiw
dantly supplied wilh ever> thing necessary for her. I
have a noble ship for a consort of 20 guns, and well
Tuanned, a store shij) 0120 guns, and well supplied
with the best of every thuig that we may want, and
prizes which would be worth in England two millions
of dollars: and what renders the comparison more
pleasing, the enemy has furnisi ed all.

The times of my best men have expired ; but their
attachment to the ship and their zeal for the service
we are engaged on, prevent all complaints on that
account. Itis not prol>ablethat you will hear of me
forseveral months to come, u <less some disaster hap-
pens ; but 1 beg leave to assure you, sir, that I shaU
not be idle.

I have the honor to bp, &c.


Loss of Fort iViflyjfrtra.— Gen. M'Ciure, al)Out the first
of Dec. 1813, abandoned fort George, in Canada, and
l>urnt the town pf Newark, adjoining it, as a ni'asnre,
he says, to prevent the enemy's occUj»ying tort George,
after he had left it. On the l8tii of the saue month
the British crossed to Lewistown, in considerable
force, and burnt it to the ground; when tiieir riWes
were set at liberty, and indulged freely in the)r brutal
excesses, in murdering our detenceless citi/ens ; they
then attacked and burnt iVIanchesler, a; id Tn-scarora,
the latter an fiidian town, in the mta)» tune llie Bri-
tish attacked iort Niagara, and took it by storm, at 4
o'c.ock on the morning of the l9Lh ; tl«e gate being-
o en, after they had surprised the picket thes entered
befoie they were discovered, when a scene of terrible
slaugiiter took place. They were not opposed by


any* except a few wounded men in the southeast block
house, and a few of tlie i^uard, but, strang-e as it may
appear, the e.temy bayouelted about 80 of our men,
chiefly after they had cried for quarters. The pre-
ceeding facts were sworn to before a justice, by Robert
Lee, a gentleman of Lewistown, who was in the fort
lyhen taken.

Burnimj of Hnffaloc and Black Rock. — Soon after
the storming of fort Niagara, and the burnmig of Lew-
istown, N:c. JVlaj. Gen. Hall repaired to the frontiers,
for the purj)ose of collecting- a force, (mdilia) suffi-
cient to defend Buffaloe and Black Rock. From the
22d, Dec to the 29tti, Gen. Hall had collected about
2000 troops, militia and exem;»ts, but was reduced to
1200 by desertions, on the morning oi the battle ol the
30th. In the evening of the 29lh (says Gen. Hall, m
a letter of the 30th Dec. to Gov. Tompkins,^ atabout
l2 o'clock, 1 received information that one of ourpa-
troles had been fired on, one mile below Black Ruck.
The enemy advanced and took possessioii of the bat-
tery near Conjokaties creek. The troops were imme-
diately formed, and stood by their arms. 1 was not
yet certain what point the enemy meant to attack.
Being" anxious to anticipate the enemy's landing, to
meet him at the water's edge, I gave orders for the
troops at the Rock, to attack the enemy, and dislodge
them from ihe battery, and to drive them their boats.
The attempt failed through the confusion into which the
militia were thrown, on the first fire of the enemy, and
the darkness of the night. I then ordered corps un-
der Major Adams, and Col. Chapin, to make the at-
tack. These three detachments were thrown into
confusion, and were of no service afterwards. As the
day dawned, 1 discovered a detachment ofthe enemy's
boats crossing to our shore, and bending their course
towards the rear of Gen. Porter's house. 1 immedi-r
ately ordered Col. Biakeslie to attack the enemy's
force at the water's edjje. I now became satisfied as
to the disposition and object of the enemy. Their
jeft wing composed of about 1000 regulars, militia,


and Indians, had been landed below the creek, under
cover of the night. With their centre consisting of
400 royal Scotts, commanded by Col. Gordon, the
battle was commenced. Their right which was pur-
posely weak, was landed near the main battery, mere-
ly to divert our force, the whole under the immediate
command of Lieut. Gen. Drummond and led on by
Maj. Gen. Riall. They were attacked by four
field pieces in the battery and at the water's edge ;
at the same time the batteiy from the other side of the
river opened a heavy lire upon us, of shells, hot shot,
and ball. The whole force now opposed to the enemy
was at most, not over 600 men, the remainder having
fled, in spite of the exertions of their officers. These
few, but brave men, disputed every inch of ground,
with the steady coolness of veterans, at the expence of
many valuable lives. The defection of the militia,
and the reserve, and loss of the services of the cavalry,
by reason of the ground on which they must act, left the
forces engaged, exposed to the enemy's fire in front
and flank. After standing their ground for half an
hour, opposed by an overwhelming force and nearly
surrounded, a retreat became necessary to |,heir safety,
and was accordingly ordered. I then made every ef-
fort to rally the troops, with a view to attack their
columns as they entered the village of Buff'aloe ;
but all in vain. Deserted by my principal force I fell
back that night to Eleven Mile creek, and was forced
to leave the flourishing vdlages of Black Rock and
Bufl'aloe a prey to the enemy, which they have pillag-
ed and laid in ashes. They have gained but little
plunder from the public stores ; the chief loss has fal-
len upon individuals.'

Our loss was oO killed, — 40 wounded,-: — and 69
prisoners, and one cannon. ' I regret to add, (says
Gen. Hall, to Gov. Tompkijis, in his letter of Jan. 16)
that on repossessing the battle ground, we collect-
ed 50 dead bodies, yet unburied, of the battle of the
30th uit. The enemy admit their loss, to be, in killed
and wounded, 300.'


Col. Butler to Gen. Harrison.

Detroit, March 7, 1814.

[^Extract] SIR — By Lieut. Shannon, of the 27th
regiment, U. S. infantry, I have the honor of inform-
ing you, that a tietachment of the troops under my
command, led by Capt. Holmes of the 24th regiment,
U. S. infantry, have obtained asignal victory over the

The affair look place on the 4th inst. about 100
miles from this place, on the river De Trench. Our
force consisted of no more than 160 rangers and
mounted infantry. The enemy, had from their own
acknowledgment 236. The fine light company
of the roy-al Scots is totally destroyed ; they led the
attack most gallantly, and their commander fell with-
in ten paces of our front line. The light company of
the 89th has also suffered severely ; one officer of that
company fell, one is a prisoner, and another is said to
l>e badly wounded. In killed, and wounded, and pri-
soners, the enemy lost about 80 — whilst on our part
there were but four killed and four wounded. This
great disparity in the loss on each side, is to be attri-
buted to be very judicious position occupied by Capt.
Holmes, who compelled the enemy to attack him at
great disadvantage ; this, even more than his gallantry,
merits the laurel.

We took one hundred head of cattle also from the
enemy, intended for Long Point or Burlington.

H.BUTLER, Lieut. Col.


Capt. Warrimjton to the Secretary of the Navy.

U.S. sloop Peacock, at sea, April 29th, 1814.

[Extract^^ SIR — I have the honor to inform you,
that we have this morning captured, after an action of
42 minutes, his Majesty's brig Eperviei', rating and
mounting 18 32 pound caironades, with 128 men, of
whom 11 were kiled and 15 wounded. Not amavv
in the Peacock was killed and only two wounded,
neither dangerously so. The fate of the Epervier
Avould have been determined in mnch h^ss time, h\\\


for the circumstances of our fore-yard being totally
disabled by two round shot in the starboard quarter
from her first broadside, which entirely deprived us of
the use of our fore and fore-top-sails, and coaipelled us
to keep the ship large througliout the remainder of the

This, with a few top-mast and top-gallant-back
stays cut away, a few shot through our sails, is the on-
ly injury iJie Peacock has sustained. Not a round
shot touched our hull ; our masts and spars are as
sound as ever. When the enemy struck, he had five
feet water in his hold, his main-top-mast was over the
side, his main boom shot away, his fore-mast cut near-
ly in two and tottering, his fore rigging ai.d stays shot
away, his bowsprit badly wounded, and 45 shot holes
in his hull, 20 of which were within a foot of his water
line. By great exertion, we got her in sailing order
just as the dark came on.

In 15 minutes after the enemy struck, the Peacock
was ready for another action, in every respect but her
fore-yard^ which was sent down, finished, and had the
fore-sail set again m 46 minutes — such was the spirit
and activity oi our gallant crew. Tlie Epervier had un-
der her convoy an English hermaphrodite brig, a
Russian and a Spanish ship, which all hauled tlieir
wind and stood to the E. N. E. I had determined
upon pursuing the former, but found that it would not
answer to leave our prize in her then crippled state; and
the more particularly so, as we found she had ;^1 20,000
in specie, which we soon transferred to this sloop.
Every officer, seamen and marine did his duty, which
IS the highest comj»leinentl can pay them.

I have the honor to be,8cc.


Lieut. Woolsey to Com. Chaunceij.

Sackett's Harbor, June 1, 1811.
[Extract.'] SIR — I had the honor to receive per
express your communication of the 27th, vesting in
me discretionary powers. I immediately despatched


Mr. Dixon in the long- gig-, to reconnoitre the coast.
I we »t with my officers to the falls, to run the boats
down over the rapjcls. At sun set we arrived at Os-
wego with the boats (19 in nnraher) loaded hi all
with 21 long" 32 pounders, ten 21 pounders, three 42
do. (carronades) and 10 cables, besides some light
articles, and distributed in the batteaux a guard of
about 150 rifl Miieo, under command of M.ijor Ap-
pling. Mr. D. \on having returned with a report of
the coast being clear, we set off at dark and arrived
at Big Salmon river about sunrise on the :i9lh, with
the loss of one boat having on board two 24 pounders
and one cable.

At Big Salmon we met the Oneidas, whom I had
despatched the day previous, under the command of
Lieut. Hill, of the riHe reafinieot. As soon as thev
had taken uii their line of march along the shore to
Big Sandy Creek, I started with all the boats and ar-
rived at our place of destination about two miles up
the Creek. At 2 P. M. on the 30th, 1 received your
letter of the 29th, (3 P. M. per express, and agreeably
to the order contained thereni, sent Lieut. Pierce to
lookout as far as Sloney Point: about (3 he returned,
having been pursued by a gun boat and three barges.
Ttie best possible disposition was made of the riHe-
inen and Lidiaus, about half a mile below our boats.
About 8 A. M. a cannonading at long shot was com-
menced by the enemy, and believing (as I did) that
no attempt would be made to with their small
force, 1 ordered Lieut. Pierce to proceed in erecting
sheers and making ^reparations to unload the boats.
About 9 o'clock Capt. Harris with a squadron of
dragoons, and Capt. Melvin with a company of light
artillery and 2 f)-pounders, arrived. Capt. Harris,
the commanding officer, agreed with me that this re^
inforceraent should halt, as the troops best calculated
for a bush fight were already on the ground, where
thev could act to the greatest advantage, and that the
enemy seeing a large reinforcement arrive, would
most probably retreat. About 10, the enemy having


jatideei and pushed up the creek with four ^un boatii,
three cutters, and one gig — ihe riflemen under that
excellent officer, M-.ijor Appling, rose from their coMf.
cealment, and after a smart lire or about 10 minutes,
succeeded in capturing all the boats and their crews,
without one having escaped. At about 5 P. M.
buried, with the honors of war, Mi. Hoare (a British
midshipman) killed in the action.

Tlie enemy's loss in this affair, is 14 killed, 28
^Wounded, and 141 prisoners, including two post
Captains, and six Lieutenants ; 4 gun boats, qne car-
tymg 1 24-pounder, and one 681b. carronade; each
of the others carrying two heavy guns ; two cutter*
and one gig.

1 have the honor to be, 8cc.


(japt. Porter to the Secretary oj tne Navy.

Essex Junior, at sea, July 3, 1814.
\^ExtractP\ SIR — I sailed from the Delaware, Oct.
27, 181'i, and repaired to Port Pray a, INoronho, and
Cape Frio. On my passage from Port Praya to No-
ronho, I captured his B. M. Packet Norton ; after tak-
ing out 1 1,000 pounds sterling in specie, sent her for
America. Oti Ca|.e Frio I captured a schooner with
hides and tallow, and sent her into Porto Rico. [
proceeded to St. Catherines, to supply my ship with
provisions. From St. Catherines I shaped my course
for the Pacific, and arrived at Valj>araiso March 14,
1813. Of the success we met with m our next cruise
you have been informed in my letter ot July 2, 1813-
1 received information that the Phoebe frigate, and
Racoon and Cherub sloops of war, were in pursuit of
me. My sliip, after being near a year at sea, requir-
ed some repairs to put her in a state to meet them ;
which 1 determined to do, and repaired, with my
prizes, to the Island of Nooaheevah, or Madison
Island, where I completely overhauled my ship, and
took on board, from the prizes, provisions and stores


for upwards of four months, and sailed for the coast
of Chili, Dec. 12,1813. Previous to sailing- 1 se-
cured the Serini^apatam, Greenwich, and Sir A.
Hammond, under the g-uns of a battery which I had
erected for their protection ; (after taking possession
of this fine Island, for the United Stales, and estab-
lishing- the most triendly intercourse with its natives)
I left them under the care of Lieot. Gamble and 21
men, with orders to repair to Valparaiso after a cer-
tain period. Believing- Com. Hillyer would be most
likely to appear at Valparaiso first, I therefore deter-
mined to cruise about that place. Agreeably to my
expectations the Com. arrived at that place ; but
contrary to uiy expectations, he brought with him the
Cherub sloop of war, mounting 28 guns, and a com-
plement of 180 men. The force of the Phoebe, the
Corn's, flag ship, was oO long 18 pounders, 1(3 32 lb.
carronades, and 7 3 pounders in her tops, in all 53
•guns, and a crew of 320 men ; making a force of 81
gims and OOO men. The force of the Essex was 40
32 lb. carronades a*nd tj long twelve's, and her crew
(had been reduced by manning out her prizes to 2-')5
men. They provisioned, and went off the port for
the purpose of blockading me. I often endeavored
to provoke a challenge, and bring the Piioebe alone
to action with the Essex, but without success. There
were no hopes of any advantages to my country from
u longer stay in port; I therefore determined to put;
to sea the first opportunity. The 28th of March, the
day after this resolution was formed, the wind blew

Online LibraryJohn] 1793-1863 [RussellThe history of the war, betwee the United States and Great-Britain, which commenced in June, 1812, and closed in Feb. 1815 .. → online text (page 23 of 38)