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gained the victory which I have described. They have acquired high honor to themselves and are justly entitled to the gratitude of their country.
Major Muir, of the 41st Regt. commanded the British in this action. Their regulars and volunteers consisted of about 400, and a large number of Indians. Major Muir, and two subalterns were wounded, one of them since dead. The militia and volunteers attached to his command, were in the severest part of the action, and their loss must have been great—it has not yet been ascertained. I have the honor to be, &c.
H. Q. Detroit, Aug. 16, 1812. It is with pain and anxiety that Brigadier General Hull announces to the North-Western army, that he has been compelled from a sense of duty, to agree to the following articles of capitulation.
Camp Detroit, Aug. 16, 1812. Capitulation of surrendering fort Detroit, entered into between Major-General Brock, commanding his Britannie majesty's forces, of the one part, and Brig. General Hull, commanding the North-Western army of the U. States, of the other part:
Article Ist. Fort Detroit with all the troops, regulars as well as militia, will be immediately surrendered to the British forces under command of Major-General Brock, and will be considered as prisoners of war, with the exception of such of the Militia of the Michigan territory, who have not joined the army.
Article 2d. All public stores, arms, and public documents, including every thing else of a public nature, will be immediately given up:
Article 3d. Private persons and private property of every description will be respected.
Article 4th. His excellency Brig. General Hall, having expressed a desire that a detachment from the state of Ohio, on its way to join the army, as well as one sent from fort
Detroit, under the command of Col. M'Arthur, should be included in the above stipulation, it is acordingly agreed to. It is, however, to be understood, that such parts of the Ohio militia as have not jomed the army, will be permitted to return bome on condition that they will not serve during the war--their arms, however, will be delivered up if belonging to the public.
Article 5th. The garrison will march out at the hour of 12 o'clock this day, and the British forces will take immediate possession of the fort.
J. M’DOWEL, Lt. Col. Militia B. A. D. C.
I. B. GREGG, Major A. D. C. (Approved) WILLIAM HULL, Brig. Gen. JAMES MILLER, Lt. Col. 5th U. S. Infantry.
E. BRUSH, Col. 1st. Regt. Michigan Militia. (Approved)
ISAAC BROCK, Maj. Gen. The army at 12 o'clock this day will march out of the east gate, where they will stack their arms, and will be then subject to the articles of capitulation.
WILLIAM HULL, Brig. Gen.
Colonel Cass to the Secretary of War.
WASHINGTON, Sept. 10, 1812. SIR-Having been ordered on to this place by Col, M'Arthur, for the purpose of communicating to the government particulars respecting the expedition lately commanded by Brig. General Hull, and its disastrous result, as might enable them correctly to appreciate the conduct of the officers and men ; and to develope the causes which produced so foul a stain upon the national character, I have the honor to submit for your consideration, the following statement.
When the forces landed in Canada, they landed with an ardent zeal and stimulated with the hope of conquest. No enemy appeared within view of us, and had an immediate and vigorous attack been made upon Malden, it would doubtless have fallen an easy victory. I know (:en. Hull afterwards declared he regretted this attack had not been made, and he had every reason to believe success would have crowned his efforis. The reason given for delaying our operatioøs was to mount our heavy cannou, and to atford to the Canadian inilitia time and opportunity to quit
an obnoxious service. In the course of two weeks the number of their militia, who were embodied, had decreased by desertion from six hundred to one hundred men; and in the course of three weeks, the cannon were mounted, the ammunition fixed, and every preparation made for an immediate investment of the fort. At a Council, at which were present all the field officers, and which was held two days before our preparations were completed, it was unanimously agreed to make an immediate attempt, to accomplish the object of the expedition. If by waiting two days we could have the service of our heavy artillery, it was agreed to wait: if not, it was determined to go without it, and attempt the place by storm. This opinion appeared to correspond with the views of the General, and the day was appointed for commencing our march. He declared to me, that he considered himself pledged to lead the army to Malden. The ammunition was placed in the waggons; the cannon embarked on board the floating batteries, and every requisite article was prepared. The spirit and zeal, the ardor and animation displayed by the officers and men, on learning the near accomplishment of their wishes, was a sure and sacred pledge, that in the hour of trial they would not be found wanting in their duty to their country and themselves. But a change of measures, in opposition to the wishes and opinions of all the officers, was adopted by the General. The plan of attacking Malden was abandoned, and instead of acting offensively, we broke up our camp, evacuated Canada, and re-crossed the river, in the night, without even the shadow of an enemy to injure us. We left to the tender mercy of the enemy the miserable Canadians who had joined us, and the protection we afforded them was but a passport to vengeance. This fatal and unaccountable step dispirited the troops, and destroyed the little confidence which a series of timid, irresolute, and indecisive measures had left in the commanding officer.
About the 10th of August, the enemy received a reinforcement of four hundred men. On the 12th, the commanding officers of three of the regiments, (the fourth was absent) were informed through a medium which admitted of no doubt, that the General had stated that a capitulation would be necessary. They on the same day addressed to Governor Meigs of Ohio, a letter of which the following is an extract,
• Believe all the bearer will tell you. Believe it, however it may astonish you, as much as if it had beentold you by one of us. Even a c
n, is talked of by the The bearer will
fill the vacancy. The doubtful fate of this letter rendered it necessary to use circumspection in its details, and therefore these blauks were left. The word. capitulation' will fill the first, and
commanding general the other. As no enemy was near us, and as the superiority of our force was manifest, we could see no necessity for capitulating, nor any propriety in alluding to it. We therefore determined in the last resort to incur the responsibility of divesting the General of his command. This plan was eventually prevented by two of the commanding officers of regiments being ordered upon detachments.
On the 13th the British took a position opposite to Detroit, and began to throw up works. During that and the two following days, they pursued their object without interruption, and established a battery for two 18 pounders and an 8 inch howitzer. About sunset on the evening of the 14th, a detachment of 350 men from the regiments commanded by Col. M'Arthur and myself, was ordered to march to the river Raisin, to escort the provisions, which had some time remained there protected by a party under the command of Capt. Brush.
On Saturday, the 15th about 1 o'clock, a flag of truce arrived from Sandwich, bearing a summons from General Brock for the surrender of the town and fort of Detroit, stating he could no longer restrain the fury of the savages. To this an immediate and spirited refusal was returned. About four o'clock their batteries began to play upon the town. The fire was returned and continued without interruption and with little effect till dark. Their shells were thrown till eleven o'clock.
At day-light the firing on both sides re-commenced ; about the same time the enemy began to land troops at the Spring wells, three miles below Detroit, protected by two of their armed vessels. Between 6 and 7 o'clock they had effected their landing, and immediately took up their line of march. They moved in close column of platoons, twelve in front, upon the bank of the river.
The fourth regiment was stationed in the fort; the Ohio volunteers and a part of the Michigan militia, behind some pickets, in a situation in which the whole flank of the enemy would have been exposed. The residue of the Michigai militia were in the upper part of the town to resist the incursions of the savages. Two 24 pounders, loaded with grape shot, were posted on a commanding eminence, ready to sweep the advancing column. In this situation the superiority of our position was apparent, and our troops, in the eager expectation of victory, awaited the approach of the e em.. Not a discontent broke upon the ear; not a look of cowardice met the eye. Every man expected a proud day for his country, and each was anxious that his individual exertion should contribute to the general result.
When the head of their column arrived within about five hundred yards of our line, orders were received from Gen. Hull for the whole to retreat to the fort, and for the 24 pounders not to open upon the enemy. One universal burst of indignatiou was apparent upon the receipt of this order. Those, whose conviction was the deliberate result of a dispassionate examination of passing events, saw the folly and impropriety of cruwding 1100 men into a little work, which 300 men could fully man, and into which the shot and shells of the enemy were falling. The fort was in this manner tilled; the men were directed to stack their arms, and scarcely was an opportunity afforded of moving. Shortly after, a white flag was hung out upon the walls. A British officer rode up to enquire the cause. A. communication passed between the commanding Generals, which ended in the capitulation submitted to you. In entering into this capitulation, the General took counsel from his own feelings only. Not an officer was consulted. Not one anticipated a surrender, till he saw the white flag displayed. Even the women were indignant at so shameful a degradation of the American character, and all felt as they should have felt, but he who held in his hands the reins of authority.
Our morning report had that morning made our effective men present, fit for duty 1060, without including the detachment before alluded to, and without including 300 of the Michigan militia on duty.