Sidor som bilder

been successful without the other. Warren and his officers, in a council of war, had determined that so long as the Island Battery and the water batteries of the town remained in an efficient state, the ships could not enter the harbor; and Warren had personally expressed the same opinion. He did not mean to enter till all the batteries which had made the attempt impracticable, including the Circular Battery, which was the most formidable of all, had been silenced or crippled by the army, and by the army alone. The whole work of the siege fell upon the land forces; and though it had been proposed to send a body of marines on shore, this was not done. Three or four gunners, “to put your men in the way of loading cannon,"3 was Warren's contribution to the operations of the siege; though the fear of attack

1 Report of Consultation on board the Superbe," 7 June, 1745. “ Commodore Warren did say publickly that before the Circular Battery was reduced he would not venture in here with three times ye sea force he had with him, and, through divine assistance, we tore that (battery) and this city almost to pieces.” - Pepperrell to Shirley, 4 July, 1745.

Warren had no men to spare. He says: “If it should be thought necessary to join your troops with any men from our ships, it should only be done for some sudden attack that may be executed in one day or night.” — Warren to Pepperrell, 11 May, 1745. No such occasion arose.

8 Ibid., 13 May, 1745. On the nineteenth of May, 1746, Warren made a parting speech to the New England men at Louisbourg, in which he tells them that it was they who conquered the country, and expresses the hope that should the French try to recover it, “the same Spirit that induced you to make this Conquest will prompt you to protect it." See the speech in Beamish-Murdoch, ii. 100

by the ships, jointly with the land force, no doubt hastened the surrender. Beauharnois, governor of Canada, ascribes the defeat to the extreme activity with which the New England men pushed their attacks. The Habitant de Louisbourg says that each of the two commanders was eager that the keys of the fortress should be delivered to him, and not to his colleague; that before the surrender, Warren sent an officer to persuade the French that it would be for their advantage to make their submission to him rather than to Pepperrell; and that it was in fact so made. Wolcott, on the other hand, with the best means of learning the truth, says in his diary that Pepperrell received the keys at the South Gate. The report that it was the British commodore, and not their own general, to whom Louisbourg surrendered, made a prodigious stir among the inhabitants of New England, who had the touchiness common to small and ambitious peoples; and as they had begun the enterprise and borne most of its burdens and dangers, they thought themselves entitled to the chief credit of it. Pepperrell was blamed as lukewarm for the honor of his country because he did not demand the keys and reject the capitulation if they were refused. After all this ebullition it appeared that the keys were in his hands, for when, soon after the siege, Shirley came to Louisbourg, Pepperrell formally presented them to him, in presence of the soldiers. Warren no doubt thought that he had a right to

precedence, as being an officer of the King in regular standing, while Pepperrell was but a civilian, clothed with temporary rank by the appointment of a provincial governor. Warren was an impetuous sailor accustomed to command, and Pepperrell was a merchant accustomed to manage and persuade. The difference appears in their correspondence during the siege. Warren is sometimes brusque and almost peremptory; Pepperrell is forbearing and considerate to the last degree. He liked Warren, and, to the last, continued to praise him highly in letters to Shirley and other provincial governors;? while Warren, on occasion of Shirley's arrival at Louisbourg, made a speech highly complimentary to both the general and his soldiers.

The news that Louisbourg was taken, reached Boston at one o'clock in the morning of the third of July by a vessel sent express. A din of bells and cannon proclaimed it to the slumbering townsmen, and before the sun rose, the streets were filled with shouting crowds. At night every window shone with lamps, and the town was ablaze with fireworks and bonfires. The next Thursday was appointed a day of general thanksgiving for a victory believed to be the direct work of Providence. New York and Philadelphia also hailed the great news with illuminations, ringing of bells, and firing of cannon.

1 See extracts in Parsons, 105, 106. The Habitant de Louisbourg oxtols Warren, but is not partial to Pepperrell, whom he calls, in correctly, “ the son of a Boston shoemaker."

In England the tidings were received with astonishment and a joy that was dashed with reflections on the strength and mettle of colonists supposed already to aspire to independence. Pepperrell was made a baronet, and Warren an admiral. The merchant soldier was commissioned colonel in the British army; a regiment was given him, to be raised in America and maintained by the King, while a similar recognition was granted to the lawyer Shirley."

A question vital to Massachusetts worried her in the midst of her triumph. She had been bankrupt for many years, and of the large volume of her outstanding obligations, a part was not worth eight pence in the pound. Added to her load of debt, she had spent £188,649 sterling on the Louisbourg expedition. That which Smollett calls “the most important achievement of the war” would never have taken place but for her, and Old England, and not New, was to reap the profit; for Louisbourg, conquered by arms, was to be restored by diplomacy. If the money she had spent for the mother-country were not repaid, her ruin was certain. William Bollan, English by birth and a son-in-law of Shirley, was sent out to urge the just claim of the province, and

1 To Rous, captain of a provincial cruiser, whom Warren had commended for conduct and courage, was given the command of a ship in the royal navy. “Tell your Council and Assembly, in his Majesty's name,” writes Newcastle to Shirley, “that their conduct will always entitle them, in a particular manner, to his royal favor and protection.” – Newcastle to Shirley, 10 August, 1745.

after long and vigorous solicitation, he succeeded. The full amount, in sterling value, was paid to Massachusetts, and the expenditures of New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Rhode Island were also reimbursed." The people of Boston saw twenty-seven of those long unwieldy trucks which many elders of the place still remember as used in their youth, rumbling up King Street to the treasury, loaded with two hundred and seventeen chests of Spanish dollars, and a hundred barrels of copper coin. A pound sterling was worth eleven pounds of the old-tenor currency of Massachusetts, and thirty shillings of the newtenor. Those beneficent trucks carried enough to buy in at a stroke nine-tenths of the old-tenor notes of the province, — nominally worth above two millions. A stringent tax, laid on by the Assembly, paid the remaining tenth, and Massachusetts was restored to financial health.”

1 £183,649 to Massachusetts ; £16,355 to New Hampshire; £28,863 to Connecticut; £6,332 to Rhode Island.

? Palfrey, New England, v. 101-109; Shirley, Report to the Board of Trade. Bollan to Secretary Willard, in Coll. Mass. Hist. Soc., i. 53; Hutchinson, Hist. Mass., ii. 391–395. Letters of Bollan in Mas. sachusetts Archives.'

It was through the exertions of the much-abused Thomas Hutch. inson, Speaker of the Assembly and historian of Massachusetts, that the money was used for the laudable purpose of extinguishing the old debt.

Shirley did his utmost to support Bollan in his efforts to obtain compensation, and after highly praising the zeal and loyalty of the people of his province, he writes to Newcastle : “ Justice, as well as the affection which I bear to 'em, constrains me to beseech your Grace to recommend their Case to his Majesty's paternal Care &

« FöregåendeFortsätt »