Page images

was fought, in which Greene lost heavily and was forced from his positions. Once more his defeat served as a victory, for Rawdon had got more than he bargained for and during the night he left the field, retreating towards Charleston.

It was during this battle that a soldier of Lee's legion, named Manning, while pursuing a flying regiment, found himself suddenly alone in the midst of the enemy. Not an American was near. Without hesitation he seized an officer by the collar, wrested his sword from him and backed off, drawing him along as a shield.

“I am Sir Henry Barry," cried the dismayed officer, “ deputy adjutant-general, and captain in the Fiftysecond regiment."

“That will do,” said Manning, “ you are just the man I was looking for.”

Thus Greene went on, technically defeated, but winning everywhere by his skill and strategy, and before the end of the year he had the British shut up in Charleston and the States of the South freed from their hands. Shortly afterwards the gallant defender of the South was gladdened with the news of Washington's brilliant feat and the surrender of his old foe, Cornwallis, at Yorktown.

Practically the war was ended, but Greene was kept busy till the end of 1782, watching the British garrisons, while his own army was in the greatest distress. Food, clothing, money, ammunition were wanting; sickness broke out, and finally mutiny. His force grew so small that he proposed to enlist negro soldiers, but this the authorities would not permit, nor would they let the soldiers forage for food. Their condition was fairly desperate when the war ended and their gladdened eyes saw the last of the British sail away from Charleston. Great was the rejoicing, while throughout the country the name of Greene was hailed as second only to that of Washington.

Congress had voted him a gold medal in honor of his services at Eutaw Springs, and the Carolinas and Georgia granted him valuable tracts of land. These he pledged to secure food and clothing for his soldiers, and most of his land was lost through the false dealing of a man whom he trusted. On the remainder he settled down in Georgia in 1785, and here, on the 19th of June, 1786, he died of a sunstroke, which attacked him while walking in his fields.

His widow remained there, and it was she who, in 1792, suggested to Eli Whitney the need of a cottoncleaning machine, and encouraged him in that series of experiments which ended in the invention of the invaluable cotton-gin.

[ocr errors][merged small]

MAD ANTHONY" is the title of honor usually given to General Anthony Wayne of the Revolutionary War. fOf honor, we say, for this title was used not in contempt but in compliment, to designate his daring and impetuous way of fighting. To apply an old saying, there was a method in his madness." He knew no such feeling as fear, but his boldness was tempered with judgment, and his generalship usually led to victory.

This famous American warrior was born on the ist of January, 1745, in Chester County, Pennsylvania. - + His grandfather had fought at the battle of the Boyne, under King William, in Ireland, his father had seen service as a soldier, and as a boy he, too, had a strong fancy for fighting. Educated in Philadelphia, he took up the art of a surveyor, and in 1773 engaged in public life as a member of the Pennsylvania Assembly.

From early manhood he took a firm stand as a patriot and vigorously opposed the tyrannous acts of the British King and Parliament. He became a member of the Committee of Safety in 1775, and after the day of Lexington and Concord he called on the patriotism of his friends and neighbors of Chester County, and soon had a regiment in arms, of which he took command. He was appointed its colonel by Congress in January, 1776, and in April was sent with his men to Canada in the expedition under General Thompson. Here he gave the British the first taste

of his quality in the battle of the Three Rivers. This affair ended in a defeat; General Thompson was taken prisoner and Colonel Wayne was wounded. But despite his wounds he took command of the shattered troops, collected them together, and led them off gallantly in the face of the victors.

This was Anthony Wayne's christening in war. His next term of service was at Fort Ticonderoga, where he held the command for six months, during which he gained credit alike for courage and skill as an engineer. His good service here won him the rank of brigadier-general and in May, 1777, he joined Washington in New Jersey, leaving the north on the eve of the Burgoyne expedition.

Washington soon found work for Wayne to do. The British from New York landed at the head of the Chesapeake and marched northward towards Philadelphia, then the seat of Congress. The Americans awaited them on the line of the Brandywine. The men under Washington at that time were far inferior to their foes in numbers, arms, and discipline, but the country was eager for a fight and the experienced commander did not deem it wise to abandon the capital without a blow in its defence. At this battle, September 11, 1777, Wayne was in command of the left wing of the army at Chadd's Ford, and held off the British for the whole day. When the line was broken elsewhere, and victory perched on the British banner, he still defended his post gallantly and led his men off safely in the evening shades.

Washington, though defeated, was not dismayed. He determined to take advantage of the first favorable opportunity to meet the foe in battle again, and detached General Wayne, with his division, with orders to harass the advancing British in every way possible. Washington, indeed, was still full of fight, and on the 16th the advance guard of the two armies met again, Wayne in the leading columns. But battle was hardly begun when a very heavy rain came on, wetting the ammunition and making both sides unfit to fight.

Washington withdrew to the Schuylkill, leaving Wayne to execute the work laid out for him. On the 20th of September the British were encamped at a place called Tredyffrin and Wayne lay near the Paoli tavern, about three miles in the rear of their left wing. He took precautions against surprise, but the British scouts had learned his location, and about eleven o'clock that night Major-General Gray, having driven in his pickets, suddenly rushed upon him with a strong force with fixed bayonets. Taken by surprise, the Americans made what defence they could, but, broken and outnumbered, they were speedily driven from their ground, with the loss of about one hundred and fifty men in killed and wounded. This night attack became known in the army as the “massacre of Paoli," and in later fights the inspiriting shout of “Remember Paoli " was used as a war-cry by Wayne's men.

Blamed for allowing himself to be surprised, Wayne demanded a court-martial, which, when it had heard the evidence, acquitted him with honor, declaring that he had done everything to be expected from an active, brave, and vigilant officer. It was the only time in his career that General Wayne's conduct was called in question. A marble monument has been erected on the battle-ground at Paoli, in memory of the men who fell that fatal night.

Washington was still determined to bring the enemy to account, and early in October, finding that Howe

« PreviousContinue »