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the latter was earnestly solicited by his namesake, to accept of a lucrative and distinguished office; but preferring the charms of retirement, and the cultivation of literature, to the cares of public life, he declined every overture of the kind. His son George, who was named after the colonial governor, was honoured by his early attentions, and received from his friendship, the valuable office of clerk of the county. Mr. Clinton was also on terms of intimacy with several of the colonial chief magistrates, and the leading men of the province; and he is respectfully noticed by Smith, the historian of New York, for his ingenuity and knowledge. Besides the daughter born in Ireland, Mr. Clinton had four sons in this country. Alexander, educated in the college at Princeton, and afterwards a physician ; Charles, also an eminent physician and a surgeon in the army which took Havanna, in the Island of Cuba; James, a major general in the revolutionary army, and George, Governor of the state of New York, and Vice President of the United States. He was peculiarly happy and fortunate in his children. Having devoted particular attention to their education, he had the satisfaction of seeing them possessed of the regard of their country, and worthy of the veneration of posterity.
He died at his place, in Ulster, now Orange county, on the 19th day of November, 1773, in his 83d year, just in time to escape, at that advanced age, the cares and perplexities of the revolution; but foreseeing its approach, he expired breathing an ardent spirit of patriotism, and conjuring his sons, in his last moments, to stand by the liberties of America.
Mr. Clinton possessed an uncommon genius; a penetrating understanding; a solid judgment, and an extensive fund of useful and ornamental knowledge, with the affability and manners of an accomplished gentleman. His person was tall, erect and graceful, and his appearance impressive and dignified. If he happened to be in the company of young people, their first impressions would be those of awe and reverence, but in the course of a few minutes, he would enter into the most pleasing and instructive conversation, which would soon restore their composure, and never failed of inspiring the most grateful attachment and the most respectful confidence. He was a dutiful son; an affectionate husband; a kind father; a good neighbour; a disinterested patriot, and a sincere Christian. He sometimes retired from the cares of business and the severe studies of the exact sciences, and took refuge in music and poetry, and courted the communion of Apollo and the muses.
The following lines, written by him on the grave of a beloved and elder sister, were casually preserved, and will show the kind affections which animated his bosom, and which attended him in all tủe relations and charities of life. Oh! cans't thou know, thou dear departed shade! The mighty sorrows that my soul invade, Whilst o'er thy mould'ring frame I mourning stand And view thy grave far from thy native land. With thee my tender years were early train'd, Oft have thy friendly arms my weight sustain'd, And when with childish freaks or pains oppres’t, You, wih soft music, lull'd my soul to rest.
DAVIDSON, WILLIAM, lieutenant colonel commandant in the North Carolina line, and brigadier general in the militia of that state, was the youngest son of George Davidson, who removed with his family, from Lancaster county, in Pennsylvania, in the year 1750, to Rowan county, in North Carolina.
William was born in the year 1746, and was educated in a plain country manner, at an acade. my in Charlotte, the county town of Mecklenburg, which adjoins Rowan.
Like most of the enterprising youth of America, Davidson repaired to the standard of his country, on the commencement of the revolutionary war, and was appointed a major in one of the first regiments formed by the government of North Carolina.
In this character, he marched with the North Carolina line, under brigadier general Nash, to the main army in New Jersey, where he served under the commander in chief, until the North Carolina line was detached in November, 1779, to reinforce the southern army, commanded by major general Lincoln. Previous to this event, major Davidson was promoted to the command of a regiment, with the rank of lieutenant colonel commandant.
As he passed through North Carolina, Davidson obtained permission to visit his family, from which he had been absent nearly three years.The delay produced by this visit saved him from captivity, as he found Charleston so closely invested when he arrived in its neighbourhood, as to prevent his rejunction with his regimento
Soon after the surrender of general Lincoln and his army, the loyalists of North Carolina, not doubting the complete success of the royal forces, began to embody themselves for the purpose of contributing their active aid in the field to the subsequent operations of the British general.They were numerous in the western parts of the state, and especially in the highland settlement about Cross creek. Lieutenant colonel Davidson put himself at the head of some of our militia, called out to quell the expected. insurrection. He proceeded with vigour in the execution of his trust; and in an engagement with a party of loyalists. near Calson's mill, he was severely wounded; the ball entered the umbilical region, and passed tlirough his body near the kidneys. This con-. fined him for cight weeks; when recovering, he int stantly took the field, having been recently appointed brigadier general by the government of North Carolina, in the place of brigadier general Rutherford, taken at the battle of Camden. He exerted himself, in conjunction with general Sumner and colonel Davie, to interrupt the progress of lord Cornwallis in his advance towards Salisbury, and throughout that eventful period, gave unceasing evidences of his zeal and firmness in upholding his falling country.
After the victory obtained by Morgan at the Cowpens, Davidson was among the most active of his countrymen in assembling the militia of his district, to enable general Greene, who had joined the light corps under Morgan, to stop the progress of the advancing enemy, and was detached by general Greene, on the night of the last day of January, to guard the very ford selected by lord Cornwallis for his passage of the Catawba river on the next morning. Davidson possessed himself of the post in the night, at the head of three hundred men; and having placed a picquet near the shore, stationed his corps at some small distance from the ford.
General Henry Lee, from whose 6 memoirs of the war in the Southern department of the United States, we copy the present sketch of General Davidson, gives the following account of the battle :
“A disposition was immediately made to dislodge Davidson, which the British general O‘Hara, with the guards effected. Lieutenant colonel Hall, léd with the light company, followed by the grenadiers. The current was rapid, the stream waist deep, and five hundred yards in width. The soldiers crossed in platoons, supporting each others steps. When lieutenant colonel Hall reached the river, he was descried by the American sentinels, whose challenge and fire brought Davidson's corps into array. Deserted by his guide, Hall passed
directly across, not knowing the landing place, which lay below him. This deviation from the common course, rendered it necessary for Davidson to incline to the right; but this manoeuvre, although promptly performed, was not effected until the light infantry had gained the shore. A fierce conflict ensued, which was well supported by Davidson and his inferior force. The militia at length yielded, and Davidson, while mounting his horse to direct the retreat, was killed. The corps dispersed and sought safety in the woods. Our loss was small, excepting general Davidson, an active, zealous and influential officer. The British lieutenant colonel Hall was also killed, with three of the light infantry, and thirty-six were wounded. Lord Cornwallis's horse was shot under him, and fell as soon as he got upon the shore. Leslee's horses were carried down the stream, and with difficulty saved; and O'Hara's tumbled over with him in the water."
The loss of brigadier general Davidson would have always been felt in any stage of the war. It was particularly detrimental in its effect at this period, as he was the chief instrument relied upon by general Greene for the assemblage of the militia; an event all important at this crisis, and anxiously desired by the American general. The ball passed through his breast, and he instantly fell dead.
This promising soldier was thus lost to his country in the meridian of life, and at a moment when his services would have been highly beneficial to her. He was a man of popular manners, pleasing address, active and indefatigable. Enamoured with the profession of arms, and devoted to the great cause for which he fought, his future usefulness may be inferred from his former conduct. .
The congress of the United States, in gratitude for his services, and in commemoration of their