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with the utmost fury, and with so much effect, that the Indi. ans were driven about thirty rods; but no sooner had Darke returned to his position than the Indians were there also; this was owing to a want of riflemen to press the advantage, which Darke had obtained by driving off the enemy.
Instantly after this charge, General Butler was mortally wounded, the right wing was broken, the artillerists were nearly all killed, the guns were taken by the enemy, and the camp was everywhere penetrated by his ferocious warriors. Major Butler, though his leg was broken by a ball, mounted his horse, and bravely led his battalion to the charge. Majors Darke and Clark led theirs also to the charge. They charged the enemy with the bayonet, drove the Indians out of the camp, and restored the guns. But while the Indians were pressed with the bayonet at one point, they kept up their continual fire from every other point, with fatal effect. Every charge, when made, drove the enemy back, at the point where it was made, but, no general effect was produced, on the enemy. Instead of keeping their ranks and fighting, the troops huddled together in crowds, about the fires, and were shot down, without resistence. The officers did their duty bravely, and were shot down in great numbers, by the enemy, who took a sure and fatal aim at them. The Indians always shoot
at the officers. :. All this time, St. Clair was so worn down by fatigue and
disease, gout and rheumatism, that he was not able to mount or dismount his horse, without assistance.
All that now remained to be done, was to bring off the remains of the army. General St. Clair ordered Lieutenant Colonel William Darke, with the second regiment to clear away the enemy from the path in which the army had marched to the spot where they were fighting; and, he ordered Major Clarke to cover the rear of the army. These orders were obeyed, and a most disorderly flight commenced, and continued for about four miles. It was now ten o'clock in the forenoon. All this time, the carnage was dreadful. Our soldiers finally threw away their arms, and fled for their lives, Many were killed in the fight, tomahawked and scalped; many were captivated and afterwards roasted alive, at the stake. The elder Caray Maunee, of the Winnebagoes, was there, and informed us of all the particulars, when we were at Prairie du Chien, in July, 1829.
After glutting their savage vengeance, by killing many of our men; and, having taken as many prisoners as they could well manage, the Indians left off their pursuit, and returned to the battle ground. There lay the dying and the dead; there stood the artillery and trains; and there also stood the baggage wagons. Here, the enemy now glutted his vengeance to the very utmost, on the dying, the dead, and the living. But, we leave the horrid picture for some other to fill up, not we.
Our troops, who remained of the fourteen hundred men, that morning, at early dawn, fled to fort Jefferson, a distance of thirty miles or more,
In this most unfortunate battle, we lost thirty-eight commissioned officers, who were killed on the battle ground. Six hundred non-commissioned officers and private soldiers, were either killed, or missing. Twenty-one commissioned officers were wounded, not a few of whom died of their wounds. Two hundred and forty-two non-commissioned officers and privates were wounded, many of whom died also of their wounds, Among the dead, were General Butler, and Major Ferguson, two brave officers, who had served with great distinction, through the whole of the revolutionary war, General Butler's death, was justly and severely lamented by the whole nation, as an irreparable loss. In the list of those who shared his fate, were many who had participated largely, in the toils, dangers and glory of the war of the revolution. They fell nobly doing their duty to their country; they rest in honor, and deserve our gratitude.
At the head of a list of the wounded, stood the names of lieutenant Colonels Thomas Gibson and William Darke, Major Butler and Adjutent General Sargent, all of whom were veteran officers, of great merit, and who had behaved with distinguished gallantry in this disastrous battle, General St,
Clair, thought that he had been overwhelmed by numbers, because he was attacked, on all sides, by the enemy, though from all the sources of information in our power, we presume the numbers of the two armies were about equal. The Indian loss it is presumed, bore a small proportion to ours..
We close our account of this disastrous defeat, by saying, that, the first line of the second regiment, as encamped, was commanded by General Richard Butler, by Patterson and Clarke. The second line was commmanded by Gaither, Bedinger and Darke. Of the first line, all the officers were either killed or wounded, except three, and of the artillerists, all were killed except four privates!
of the regulars, the following officers were killed, viz: General RICHARD BUTLER, Ferguson, Bradford, Spear, Ford, Morgan, Bines, Butts, Hart, Kirkwood, McCrea, Thompson, Phelon, Warren, Balsh, Newman, Kelso, McMickle, Purdy, Anderson, Lukens, Burgess, Crawford, Moorehead, Cribbs, Smith, Piatt, Van Swaringen, Tipton, McMath, Reeves, Doyle, Brooks, Greyton, Cummings, Beatty, Doctors Chase and Beatty.
Wounded officers of the regulars, viz: Lieutenant Colonel George Gibson, Major Thomas Butler, Captain Price, Colonel Sargent, Captain Darke, Buchanan, Lysle, Boyd, Trueman, Malartie, Cobb, Wilson, Ensign Purdy, Lieutenant Colonel Darke, and others.
Of the militia, killed, viz: Oldham, Lemon, Briggs and Montgomery. Wounded: Captain Thomas, Captain Madison, Lieutenant Stagner, Lieutenant Owens, Lieutenant Walters, and Lieutenant Gano.
The fugitives arrived at Fort Jefferson, about sunset, and continued their march, that night, at ten o'clock. The ground was covered with snow, two or three inches deep. They marched to Fort Washington, by the way of Fort Hamilton, Before the troops began their march, a large number of the sentinels of Fort Jefferson deserted and fled, such was their terror at what they had heard of this dreadful disaster. The march was a very disorderly one, from Fort Jefferson to Fort Washington..
There were in the army, at the commencement of the action, about two hundred and fifty women, of whom, fifty-six were killed in the battle, and the remainder were made prisoners by the enemy, except a small number who reached Fort Washington. One of the survivors, lived until recently in Cincinnati, a Mrs. CATHARINE MILLER. This woman ran ahead of the whole army, in their flight from the field of battle. Her large quantity of long red hair, floated in the breeze, which the soldiers followed through the woods, as their
fore-runner that moved rapidly onward, to the place of their ultimate destination. - On reaching Fort Jefferson, General St. Clair, met Hamtramack, with the first regiment, whom we have mentioned, as having been ordered to bring back the deserters, and protect the provisions, and heavy baggage-wagons which had been left slowly making their way along, in the rear of the army. · A council of war decided that they would not return to the battle ground, so leaving the wounded in Fort Jefferson, St. Clair, with a mere remnant of his army, returned to Fort Washington. . . .,
While congress was in session at Philadelphia, early in December, President Washington received the official account of this most calamitous battle of the 4th of November, which information was forthwith communicated by him to the national legislature. Nothing could have been more unexpected, than this disaster. The public mind was exasperated, in a high degree against St. Clair, but for want of officers of a rank high enough to try him, no court martial could be, or was called upon his conduct. Late in the session of 1792, congress appointed a committee to inquire into it, but, that civil committee, acquitted him. · The Indian war now assumed a serious aspect, and the reputation of the nation required to be retrieved from the disgrace it had sustained. The whole western frontier, lay exposed to fresh inroads of the enemy, now flushed with so dreadful a victory.
General Washington wished to have congress give him
authority to raise three additional regiments of foot, and a squadron of horse, for three years, unless peace should be sooner made with the Indians. A bill containing these provisions, was introduced into the house of representatives, but it met with great opposition there. It was objected that the nation had not the money to carry on the war, upon such a scale; that while the British held the western posts, we were not able to protect so large a frontier; that, by withdrawing from the North Western Territory, and by making the Ohio river the boundary; and, by treating with the Indians, a peace might be restored to this frontier.
Such were some of the reasons, assigned by the opposition to General Washington, in congress. They strove with all ', their might, to defeat the bill, for the defence of the North Wes
tern Territory. . ' ; Those who supported the measure, urged the necessity of self defence and self preservation; they presented to congress, a picture of the bleeding frontier-and they proved, that not less than fifteen hundred Kentuckians, men, women and children, who were peaceably, pursuing their avocations, had been, either slain or carried into captivity by the enemy, within the, then, last seven years; and it was not doubted, that the frontier settlements of Pennsylvania and Virginia, had suffered quite as much, within the same period of time. The measures of General Washington they said, had always been conciliato· ry, towards the savages. It was shown, that Harmar offered
to treat with the savages in the villages of the Maumee river, but the Indians, at first, refused to treat, and then, asked for thirty days, to consider, on the subject, which was granted; This was in the summer of 1790, and at the end of the thirty days, the savages refused to give any answer, to the proposals to treat. In that same thirty days, however, while Harmar, forbore all hostilities, by the express orders of General Washington, to that effect, the Indians, in the meantime, had either killed or captured one hundred and twenty persons on our frontiers. Many of the prisoners had been roasted alive by a slow fire.