John G. (John Gaylord) Wells.

Wells' illustrated national campaign hand-book for 1860 online

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or ordinance, should be made or imposed upon them but such as should be
made by the assembly, and approved by the President and Council."
1682. Pennsylvania settled by Wm.Penn, who founded Philadelphia the yeai

1686. The charter government of Massachusetts was revoked, and the King
appointed a President over the country from Narragansett to Nova Scotia.

1687. Governor Andros attempted to reclaim the charter granted to Connecti-
cut, but it was secretly taken from the assembly chamber at Hartford by Capt
Wadsworth while the subject was under discussion, and hidden in a hollow
tree, since celebrated as the Charter Oak, which was an object of curiosity
until 1856, when it was blown down.

1689. " King William's War" with France began, and was continued till 1697,
during which all the English colonies suffered by ravages of the French and

1690. The people of New Hampshire took the government into their own
hands, and placed themi- elves under the protection of Massachusetts— The
conquest of Canada was undertaken by the people.oC New England and New
York acting in concert. An armament, under Sir William Pblpps, made as
unsuccessful demonstration against Quebec, and then returned to Boston.
The first emission of bills of credit in the colonies was made by Massachraetta
to defray the expenses of this expedition.

1701. " Queen Anne's War,'' waged against France and Spain, was commenced
this year, and only terminated in 1713 by the treaty of Utrecht.

1733. Georgia settled by Gen. Oglethorpe, who landed at Savannah with about
120 emigrants, and began building the town.

1741 A suppo!=ed negro plot occasioned great excitement in the city of New
York and between 30 and 40 persons were executed before it subsided.— The
provinces of Massachusetts and New Hampshire were separated.

1744 " King Georo-e's War," which originated in European disputes relative to
Austria, again gave the French and Indians many opportunities.of harassuig
-the colonists. The most important event of the war in Amenc.A was he
siege and capture of Louisburg, which was restored to France m lr48 by the
treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle.

r54 " The French and Indian War," arising from disputed claims to Ameri-
can territory by the English and French, again plunged the colonies in diffi^
culties, and materially injured their prosperity, until 1,63, when oeace wai

»759. Quebec surrendered to the English forces under Gen. Wolfe, who waa


killed on the battle field, and all the other French posts in Canada were cap
tnred soon after.

1754. A resolution imposing certain stamp duties on the colonies was adopted
by the House of Commons, but it did not become a law till next year.

17G5. A general indignation spread through the colonies when it was known
that the " Stamp Act " had passed. At Boston and Philadelphia the bella
were muffled, and rung a funeral peal ; and at New York the Act was carried
through the streets, with a death's-head affixed to it, and styled " The folly
of England and the ruin of America." The stamps themselves, in many
places, were seized and destroyed, and the doctrine that England had no right
to tax America was boldly avowed. — The fikst Colonial Congress met in
New York, nine colonies being represented, and agreed on a, "Declaration of
Eights," and other energetic measures

1766. The Stamp Act was repealed, through the exertions of Mr. Pitt.

1767. Parliament passed a bill imposing a duty on glass, paper, painters'
colors, and tea, which Ov;casion~<l as much excitement as the Stamp Act. and
the colonial assemblies adopted spirited resolutions for resisting its operation.

1768. A vessel was seized by the custom house officers in Boston for violating
some of the odions commercial restrictions, but'the people compelled them to
abandon their prize, and seek refuge in Castle William.

1770. In March, an affray occurred in Boston between some citizens and the
soldiery stationed there, which produced a great sensation throughout Ameri-
ca. — Parliament passed a bill repealing all duties imposed by the act of 1767,
except that on tea, which they allowed the British East India Company to
export to America , free from the duties which they had before paid in England,

1773. The ports of New York and Philadelphia were c'osed against vessels
having cargoes of tea, and they were compelled to return to England. At
Boston, a party of men, disguised as Indians, boarded several vessels, and
broke open 342 chests of tea, which they emptied into the harbor in the pres-
ence of thousands of spectators.

1774. Parliament passed the Boston Port Bill, which forbade the landing and
shippingof goods, wares, and merchandise at Boston. The provincial assem-
bly resolved that " the impolicy, injustice, inhumanity, and cruelty of the
act exceeded all their powers of expression.''

1775. An oppressive bill was passed by Parliament, restricting the commerce
of all the provinces, except New York and North Carolina. The inhabitants
of Massachusetts were declared rebels, and 10,000 troops were ordered to
America, to aid 'n reducing the rebellious colonies. — April 19. The first blood
in the cause of Independence was shed at Lexington, about ten miles from
Boston, where a party of militia intercepted a division of EuRlis-h soldiers
on their way to Concord for the purpose of destroying some military stores
which the people had collected there. At Concord, a smart skirmish took
place, and the British made a hasty retreat, after partially accomplishing
their object. — May 10. The Continental Congre.'Hs assembled at Philadelphia,
and, after electing John Hancock president of the body, among other impor-
tant measures, voted to raise an army of 20 000 men. — June 17. A sanguinary
battle took place on Breed's Hill, (generally now regarded as Bunker Hill,)
in which the British were severely cut up, but they finally gained posse.'sion
of the hill, the Americans retiring across Charle.stown Neok with incou-
giderable loss. — July 12. Washington, having been appointed commander in-
chief, arrived at Cambridge, and entered upon his duties. — Georgia joined the
tonfederation ; after which, the style of the " Thirteen United Colonies " was
adopted. — An unsuccessful attempt wrs made by the Americans for the con-
quest of Canada, in which Gen. Montgomery was killed during an assault on
Quebec (Dec. 31), and a portion of his ttoops were t^ken prisoners.

1776. March 4. Gen. Washington gained possession of Dorchester Heights, and


the British left Bo-ton on the 17tb.— June 18. Canada evacuatf^ by tha
American-'. — July 4. Tiin Deci.akation ok Inuki'kndknck, by the Conti-
nental Congress at I'hiUdelpliiii., was proclaimed, and hailed with gieat
rejoicings.— Ausust 27. Battle of Long I.sjiuid. in which the Ameri an.s were
defeated, bui Washington made an admirahle reirent to New York on the
29th, and thence across Jersey to I'hiladflphia, where Congress was in fcs-
sion.— Dec. 12. Congre.-s adjourned to Baltiniuic, imd soon after invested
Wafhington with unlimited powers,— Dec. 2(1. Wa.'-hington having
»mid great perils recrossed tiie Delaware on the |)revioiis night surprised and
japtured a large body of He-.«ians at Trenton, and returned to Pennsylvania,
with his prisoners.— Dec. 28. Wa-hington took post at Trenton.

1 77. Jan. .3. Finding him.^olf nearly surroimded by a force far superior to
Ms ow'), Washington kindled his camplires as usual to deceive the enemy,
and then by a circuitous mute rapidly advanced uj)on Princeton, where he
gained another important victoiy. — In the spring, the Marquis de la Fayette
arrived i.i America from France, having fitted' ont a vessel at his own ex-
pense, and ealisted as a volunteer in the army of Washington, declining all
pay for his services ; but Congress, which had returned to Philadelphia, soon
ftfter appointed him a Major-General. — May G. Gen. Burgoyne, witb a power-
ful force, designed to invade the Stales by the way of Lake Champlain and
'-he Hudson, arrived at Quebec ; and on the 16th of June he left St. Johns tor
Crown Point, whoro he established magazines.— June 30. The British army,
cader General Howe, passed over to Staten Island, leaving Washington in
posse-esion of New Jersey — July 5. Gen. St. Clair abandoned Ticimderoga,
retreating before Burgoyne's forces, with whom he had a severe skirmish at
Hubbardton, and tinallj succeeded in joining Gen. Schuyler on the Hud.son,
having lost 200 pieces of artillery and a large quantity of stores. — July 10.
Col. Barton, with about forty militia, seized the Commander of the English
forces in Rhode Island, (Major-GeneraJ Prescott,) while in bed, and conducted
him safely through his own troops and fleet back to the mainland. This
heroic exploit nor only cheered the American arnij', but serured an officer of
equal rank to exchange for Gen. Tiee — August 16 Battle of Bennington, in
which the America' s, led by Colorel Stark, obtained an important victory
over Colonel Bium, who had been seal by General Hurgojne to seize some
Btores at that place. — Sept. 11. BalMe of the Brandywine. in which Count
Pulaski, a brave Polander, nbo had magnanimously joined the Americans,
distinguished himself, and soon aft"ii promoted to the rank of brigadier,
with the command of the cavalry. Gen. Lafayette was severely wounded
while endeavoring to rally the fugitives.- —Sept. 13. Burgoyne crossed the
Hudson with his whole army, and took a potitjon on the heights and plains of
Saratoga Sept. 26. The British army, u^dor Gen. Howe, entered Philadel-
phia without further opposition, Congresa having previous-ly adjourned to
Lancaster.— Oct. 4. Washingtoo attacked a large British force at Geiman-
town, and was repulsed, with the loss of 1.200 men in killei. wounde.l, and
prisoners. — Oct, 17. Burgoyne, finding himself surrounded, and despairing of
relief, surrendered his army to Gen. Gates, who had recently been appointed
to the command of the Northern division, whereby the Americans acquired
a fine tra^n of brass artillery, 6,000 muskets, and immense quantities of othei
munitions of war. — Oct. 22. A plan of confederation wa.s adopted by Congresa,
which, however, amounted to little more than a league of friendship between
the states. — Dec. 11. Washington retired into winter-quarters at Valley Forge.

1778. In February, Parliament passed two bills, virtually conceding all that
had been the cause of controversy, and sent commissioners to aojust existing
dlftorences ; they attempted to gain their objects by private intiigue and
bribery, which coming to the knowledge of Congress, that bodv declared ii
incompatible with their honor to hold any intercourse with them. — Feb. 6.
France acknowledged the independence of America, and concluded a treaty
of alliance and commerce.— June 18. The BritisJi army evacuated Philadel


phia, and retreated to New York, followed cautiou-ly by Washington witt
the main body of his army. — June 2s. B;ittle of Monmouth, in which th«
British were signally defeated with great lo,-;s, and retreated to Sandy Hook,
whence they were taken to New York by their fleet. — July 3 Wyoming was
attacked by a large body of British, torie^, and Indians, who, after the place
had been surrendered, perpetrated the most inhuman atrocit'es: men. women,
and children were shut up in the houses and barracks, and consumed in one
general conflagration. — I)ec. 29. An English army of 2,000 men landed near
Savannah, then defended by only 600 troops, and, after a severe Ijattle, took
possession of the city, the Americans retreating.

779. May 11. Gen. Provost, with a large British force, having invested
Charleston, summoned the city to surrender; but the approach of Gen. Lia-
coln, who had been appointed to the command of the southern army, com-
pelled him to retreat. — July 5. Gen. Tryon made another descent on Connec-
ticut, and iilondered and burned the towns of New Haven, East Haven, Pair-
field, and Norwalk. — July 16. Stony Point, which had been previously taken
by the enemy, was gallantly recaptured by Gen. Wayne,- the British lo.-ring
upwards of 600 men in killed, wounded, and prisocers. — Sept. 2.3. One of the
most bloody battles on record was fought on the coast of Scotland between
the American frigate Bon Homme Richard, Captain Paul Jones, and two
British frigates, the Serapis and the Countess of Scarborough, which resulted
in a victory for the Richard, which was so cut up, tha* she soon after sunk.
Of a crew of 375, 300 were either killed or wounded.— Jet. 9. Alter a month's-
siege, a combined attack of the French and American.*, under Count D'Estaing
and General Lincoln, was made on Savannah, but it proved unsuccessful, and
Gen. Lincoln retired into S. Carolina, while Count D'Estadng withdrew his
fleet from the American coast. Count Pulai-ki was mortally wounded during
the battle, and a monument has since been erected to his memory on the spot
where he fell.

1780. Dining the moat of this year, military operations were confined to the
Carolinas. — April 9. Admiral' Arbuthnot, with a powerful fleet, which bad
transported Sir Henry Clinton with the bulk of his forces from New Yoik to
the South, anchored m Charleston harbor, and summoned the city to -surren-
der. This v,-a3 rejected, and Gen. Lincoln and his troops made a gallant de-
fence, until May 12, when, mo.«t of the fortifications having been beaten down,
and the enemy being about to make an assault, a compliance was unavoidable,
and the royal government was again established in South Carolina.— May 12.
Charleston surrendered after more than a month's siege. — July 10. A French
squadron, under Admiral de Ternay. arrived at Newport, having on board
G.OOO men, commanded by Count de Eocliauibeau. — Augu>t 16. Ge^n. Gates,
who was advancing with a considerable force for the relief of the South,

encountered the British, under Lords Rawdon and Gornwallis, near Camden,
S. C, and affer a desperate engagement, was compelled to draw off, with
the loss of 1,000 men, and all his artillery, ammunition wagons, and most ot
hi? baggage. Baron de Kalb, second in command, was mortally wounded,
dying on the 19th.— Sept. 23. Major Andre, adjutant-general of the British
army, was arrested near Tarrytown, N.Y., by three militiamen, John Paulding,
David Williams, and Isaac Van Wert. He was returning from a visit to Gen.
Arnold, then in command Point, with whom he had succes-^fully
negotiated for the surrender of that post. He was soon after tried, convicted,
and executed as a spy^,, while the traitor Arnold unfortunately escaped. Being
allowed to write to Arnold, that officer of course found that his treason waa
discovered, and precipitately fled on board the sloop of-war Vulture, then
lying in the Hudson.

1781. The traitor Arnold, as one of the rewards of his crime, was made »
brigadier in the British service, and early in January he made a descent u^oa
Virginia, ravaging the coasts, and plundering and destroying public and pri-
vate property to a vast amount.— -Jan. 17. The English cavalry, imder CoL


Tarleton, were severely beaten at the Battle of Cowpens by the Americans,
under Geu. Morgan, and lost 300 in kilk-d und wounded, 500 prisoners. 100
horses, and a large quantity of biig^xt'c Morgan's loss was 1 >. naen killed and
60 wounded.— JiiH. 31. Gen. Grttrue. who had been appointed to supersede
Geu. Gates in the South, arrived ar, Cheraw, and took command of M-jrgan'a
divif^ion.— -March 15. Gen. (incije encountered the army of Lord Cornwallia
at Guilford Court House ; but neither party gained a decided advantage,
and Greene withdrew int > South Carolina, eiK-ami)iijg on Hobkirk'u
Hill, about a mile frojii Ctiniden, where Lord Rawdon was then posted
— April 25. Lord Rawdou m.^de an attack on Hobkirk's Hill, but with so
little success, that he soon after evacuated Camden, and retired beyond
the Santee River. — Oct. 8. The >A mericans and British, under Gen. Greene
and Col. Stewart, met at I'^utaw Spring-!, and a sanguinary coufliot,
of nearly four hours, eusned ; when Greene drew off his troops, and
Stewart retired to Monk's Curupr. — Sept. 0. The traitor Arnold villanously,
burned New London, and destroyed much private and public property indi->-
crimiuately. — Sept. 30. The combined American am) French army, under
Washington and Rochambeau. suddenly appeared before Yorktown, where
Cornwallis had concentrated hii fcjrces, and immediately commenced the
construction of batteries and other works for the effectual siege of that
place. A French fleet, commanded by Count de Grasse, had previously
entered the Chesapeake, and, by bloi'king up James and York rivers,
prevented the enemy's escape by sea. — Oct. 19. Finding' retreat impossible,
and re.sistance vain, Coruwallis surrendered the post, :iu.d thus 7,000 troops
and the shipping in the harbor were secured to the victors, and the revo-
lutionary struggle virtually ended.— -Dec. 12. A resolution passtd the British
House of Commons that those who should advise the king to continue the
war in America, should be declared enemies of the sovereiga and of the

1782. The independence of America was acknowledged by Holland, Sweden,
Denmark, Spain, and Russia. — Eirly in May, Sir Guy Carletuu, successor uf
Sir Heuiy Onuton as commauder of all the forces in America, arrived in New
Y^ork, with lustructious to promote an accommodation with the United States,
and of cour-e there were no subsequent military operations of importanct.'. —
Nov. 30. Preliminary articles oi' peace were signed at Paiis by Mr. Oswald,
commisisoner on the part of Great Britain, and by .John Adams. Benjamin
Franklin, John Jay, and Henry Laurens, on the part of the United Slates.

1783. April 19. On the eighth anniversary of the biitlle of Lexington, a
cessation of hostilities was proclaimed iu the Amerii-an army. — Sept, 3.
Dehnitive treities of peace were signed by the commi'si<jucrs of England i^ith
those of the United States, France, Spain, and Holland. — N iv. 25. New York
was evacuated by the British troops. — Dec. 4. Washington took leave of the
army, and the soldiers of the Revolution returned peaceably to their homes.
— Dec. 23. Washington resigned his commission into the hands of CongresiS,
then sitting at Annapolis, Md., and retired to private life.

Events subsequent to Independence,

1784. Nov. I. Congress convened at Trenton, N. J., but transacted little hrnt
ness of permanent importance.

1785. June 2. John Adams, first minister from the United States to Great
Britain, had his first audience with the king.

1786. Shay's Rebellion iu Ma,=sachusotts and New Hampshire.

)787^ Sept. 17. The Constitution of the United States was adopted at Phil»
delphia.— -Daniel Shay and his party dispersed by Gen Lincoln.


17S8. Eleven States ratified the Constitution — Election for President of the TJ

1780. March 4. Congress assembled at New York, but did not organize till
April 6. — April 30. George Washington was sworn iuto office as the first
President, and John Adams as tue first Vice-President of the U. States.

790. In May, Rhode Island acceded to the Constitution. — Sept. 30. Gen.
Harmer defeated by the Indians near Chilicothe. — The first census completed,
showing -population, 3,921,32€ revenue, $4,771,000 ; exports, $19,000,000 ;
imports, $20,000,000.

791. Vermont, having acceded to the Constitution, was admitted into thf/
Union. — The first U. S. Bank was chartered by Congress, but not without
powerful opposition.

1792. The Mint was established. — Kentucky admitted into the Union.

1793. April 22. President Washington issued a proclamation of neutrality in
regard to the affairs of France, which were beginning to affect American
pohtics. — Washington and Adams were re-elected.

1794. Aug. 20. Gen. Wayne obtained bo decisive a victory over the hostile
Indians, as to produce a salutary effect upon all the tribes north-west of the

1795. Treaties were concluded with Spain and Algiers.

1796. Sept. 17. Washington signified his intention to retire from public life,
aud pubhshed his Fare'vell Addresis. — Tennessee was admitted into the Union.

1797. March 4. John Adams was inaugurated as President, and Thomaa
Jefl'ersou, Vice-President.

1798. Congress again elected Gen. Wa.'^hington commander in- chief of the army

1799. Dec. 14. Gen.Wasbington died at Mount Vernon, after a very short illness.

1800. The seat of government was transferred to Washington City. — Sept. 30.
A treaty was concluded with the French Directory.— President Adanw signed
tue alien and sedition laws.

1801. Thomas Jefferson was elected President, and Aaron Burr Vice-Presi"
dent. — Congress declared war against Tripoli. — The second census was com-
pleted, and shotrei— population, 5,319,762 ; revenue, $12,945,000 ; exports.

1802. New Orleans was ceded by Spain to France, and the Mississippi closed
against the United States. — Ohio admitted into the Union.

1803. Louisiana was purchased of the French by the United States for
$15,000,000.— Com. Preble sailed with a sqyadron for Tripoli; the frigate
Philadelphia got aground in the harbor, and was captured by the barbarians.

1804. Capt. Eaton was appointed navy agent for the Barbary powers. — Lieut-
(afterwards Com.) Decatur recaptured and destroyed the frigate Philadelphia,
under a terrific fire from the enemy's guns.

1-805. Thomas Jefferson was re-elected President, and George Clinton Vice-
President.— Peace was concluded with Tripoli, and 200 prisoners were given
up to the United States.

1806. England began to impress American seamen, on the plea of their having
been born in that kingdom. — Nov. 21. Berlin decree issued by Bonaparte,
crippling American commerce.

18C7. Aaron Burr, formerly Vice-President, was tried at Richmond for high
treason, but was acquitted, owing to the insufficiency of evidence.

1808. June 22. The American frifrate Chesapeake was fired into by the
British ship-of- war Leopard, for refusing to deliver up four men wh^wera
claimed as English subjects ; three men were killed and eightsen wounJrcd. —
In November, the British government issued the celebrated " Orders in Coun



«v," prohibiting all trade with France and her allifi<i ; and in Dec.fTohf^,
F>..)nap-irte isMued the retaliatory " Milan dfcree," luil.idoing »11 iiiide witb
Eiigliiiid and ti«r colonies— Dec. 22. decitcd an eniU.rfio liie de-
sign of wLich was to retaliate on P>auce and England tor ui.just coniiutrciul

ISO!), March 1. Congress repealed the embargo act,, but at the same time
interdicted uU commercial iijtercourse with France or England.

1810. In November, all the hostile decrees of the French were rcvuked. and
commercial intercourse with the United States was resumed; but tho.-e of
Engliuid were not only continued, but ships of war were stationed near the
I)rincipal American poris f<ir the purpose of intercepting our mtrchantmcn,
which were captured, and sent to Briti-sh ports as Icgiil [jiizes.

1811. May 16. The ship-of-war Little Belt, Capt Bingham, washailcd
in the evening ou the coast of Virginia by tlie U. S. frigate President, dipt.
Rodgers, but in-tead of receiving a s:iti-('aiiMiy answer, a >hot was fired in
return, when a brief engagement folhiwed, ui wbi.'h eleven of the enemy were
killed and twenty-one wounded. The'ent had tnily one man wounded

1S12. June 17. President Madison i^sut-d a proclnniation of war agains
England, and exertions were immedately made to enlist 2j,000 men, to raise
50,000 volunteers, and to call out 100, OoO militia.

ISl-t. In August, Wa.sbington City surrendered to a British army, who des-
troyed theUapitol, President's Mansion, and many other valuable buildings.
ifec. — Die. 24. Treaty of ]jeace with Great Britain cniRiuded at (iheut.

1815. Jan. 8. Battle of New Orleans, in whuh the British, under Sir E.
Packenham were signally repulsed by the Americans, under Gen. Jack?on.

1816. In Apiil, Congress chartered the U. S. Bank, with a capital of $35,
000,000. — Indiana admitted into the Union. — American Colonization Society

1817. Mari-h 4. James Monroe and Daniel f>. Tompkins were inaugurated as
Pre.sideat and Vice-i^resideat.— Mt-iiis-ii|>[)i aduair.tcd into the Union.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 26

Online LibraryJohn G. (John Gaylord) WellsWells' illustrated national campaign hand-book for 1860 → online text (page 26 of 27)