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rion occupied the eastern declivity of the ridge on which the fort stood.
The vale which runs between the two hills admitted our safe approach within four hundred yards of the fort. This place was selected by Lee to break ground. Relays of working parties being provided for every four hours, and some of the negroes from the neighbouring plantations being brought, by the influence of Marion, to our assistance, the works advanced with rapidity. Such was their forwardness on the roth, that it was determined to summon the commandant.
A flag was accordingly despatched to Captain M'Pherson, stating to him with truth our relative situation, and admonishing him to avoid the disagreeable consequences of an arrogant temerity. To this the captain replied, that, disregarding consequences, he should continue to resist to the last moment. The retreat of Rawdon was known in the evening to the besiegers; and in the course of the night a rier arrived from General Greene confirming that event, urging redoubled activity, and communicating his determination to hasten to their support. Urged by these strong considerations, Marion and Lee persevered throughout the night in pressing the completion of their works. On the next day, Rawdon reached the country opposite to Fort Motte ; and in the succeeding night encamping on the highese ground in his route, the illumination of his fires gave the joyful annunciation of his approach to the despairing garrison. But the hour was close at hand, when this joy was to be converted into sadness.
The large mansion in the centre of the encircling trench, left but a few yards of the ground within the enemy's works uncovered; burning the house must force their surrender.
Persuaded that our ditch would be within arrow shot before noon of the next day, Marion and Lee determined to
adopt this speedy mode of effecting their object. Orders were instantly issued to prepare bows and arrows, with missive combustible matter. This measure was reluctantly adopted; for the destruction of private property was repugnant to the principles which swayed the two commandants, and upon this occasion was peculiarly distressing. The devoted house was a large, pleasant edifice, intended for the summer residence of the respectable owner, whose deceased husband had been a firm patriot, and whose only marriageable daughter was the wife of Major Pinckney, an officer in the South Carolina line, who had fought and bled in his country's cause, and was now a prisoner with the enemy. These considerations powerfully forbade the execution of the proposed measure; but there were others of much cogency, which applied personally to Lieutenant Colonel Lee, and gave a new edge to the bitterness of the scene.
Encamping contiguous to Mrs. Motte's dwelling, this officer had, upon his arrival, been requested in the most pressing terms to make her house his quarters. The invitation was accordingly accepted; and not only the lieutenant colonel, but every officer of his corps, off duty, daily experienced her liberal hospitality, politely proffered and as politely administered. Nor was the attention of this amiable lady confined to that class of war which never fail to attract attention. While her richly spread table presented with taste and fashion all the luxuries of her opulent country, and her sideboard offered without reserve the best wines of Europe-antiquated relics of happier days—her active benevolence found its way to the sick and to the wounded ; cherishing with softest kindness infirmity and misfortune, converting despair into hope, and nursing debility into strength. Nevertheless the obligations of duty were imperative; the house must burn; and a respectful communi
cation to the lady of her destined loss must be made. Taking the first opportunity which offered, the next morning, Lieutenant Colonel Lee imparted to Mrs. Motte the intended measure; lamenting the sad necessity, and assuring her of the deep regret which the unavoidable act excited in his and every breast.
With a smile of complacency this exemplary lady listened to the embarrassed officer, and gave instant relief to his agitated feelings, by declaring, that she was gratified with the opportunity of contributing to the good of her country, and that she should view the approaching scene with delight. Shortly after, seeing accidentally the bows and arrows which had been prepared, she sent for the lieutenant colonel, and presenting him with a bow and its apparatus imported from India, she requested his substitution of these, as probably better adapted for the object than those we had provided.
Receiving with silent delight this opportune present, the lieutenant colonel rejoined his troops, now making ready for the concluding scene. The lines were manned, and an additional force stationed at the battery, lest the eneiny, per: ceiving his fate, might determine to risk a desperate assault, as offering the only chance of relief. As soon as the troops reached their several points, a flag was again sent to MÄPherson, for the purpose of inducing him to prevent the conflagration and the slaughter which might ensue, by i second representation of his actual condition.
Doctor Irvine, cf the legion cavalry, was charged with the flag, and instructed to communicate faithfully the inevitable destruction impending, and the impracticability of relief, as Lord Rawdon had not yet passed the Santee ; with an assurance that longer perseverance in vain resistance, would place tne garrison at the mercy of the conqueror ; who was not regardless of the policy of preventing waste of time by inflicting exemplary punishment, where resistance was maintained only to produce such waste. The British captain received the flag with his usual politeness, and heard patiently Irvine's explanations ; but he remained immovable; repeating his determination of holding out to the last.
It was now about noon, and the rays of the scorching sun had prepared the shingle roof for the projected conflagration. The return of Irvine was immediately followed by the application of the bow and arrows. The first arrow struck and communicated its fire; a second was shot at another quarter of the roof, and a third at a third quarter ; this last also took effect, and, like the first, soon kindled a blaze. M'Pherson ordered a party to repair to the loft of the house, and by knocking off the shingles to stop the flames. This was soon perceived, and Captain Finley was directed to open his battery, raking the loft from end to end.
The fire of our six pounder, posted close to one of the gable ends of the house, soon drove the soldiers down; and no other effort to stop the flames being practicable, M'Pherson hung out the white flag. Powerfully as the present occasion called for punishment, and rightfully as it might have been inflicted, not a drop of blood was shed, nor any part of the enemy's baggage taken. M'Pherson and his officers accompanied their captors to Mrs. Motte's, and partook with them of a sumptuous dinner; soothing in the sweets of social intercourse the ire which the preceding conflict had engendered.
THE FATHER OF HIS COUNTRY.
(From the funeral oration, 1800.) First in war—first in peace—and first in the hearts of his countrymen, he was second to none in the humble and
endearing scenes of private life; pious, just, humane, temperate, and sincere ; uniform, dignified, and commanding, his example was as edifying to all around him, as were the effects of that example lasting.
To his equals he was condescending, to his inferiors kind, and to the dear objects of his affections exemplarily tender; correct throughout, vice shuddered in his
presence, and virtue always felt his fostering hand; the purity of his private character gave eMulgence to his public virtues.
His last scene comported with the whole tenor of his life-although in extreme pain, not a sigh, not a groan escaped him; and with undisturbed serenity, he closed his well-spent life. Such was the man America has lost—such was the man for whom our nation mourns.
Methinks I see his august iinage, and I hear falling from his venerable lips these deep-sinking words:
“Cease, sons of America, lamenting our separation : go on, and confirm by your wisdom the fruits of our joint councils, joint efforts, and common dangers; reverence religion, diffuse knowledge throughout your land, patronize the arts and sciences ; let Liberty and Order be inseparable companions. Control party spirit, the bane of free governments ; observe good faith to, and cultivate peace with all nations, shut up every avenue to foreign influence, contract rather than extend national connection, rely on yourselves only ; be Americans in thought, word and deed ;—thus will you give immortality to that union which was the constant object of my terrestrial labors ; thus will you preserve undisturbed to the latest posterity the felicity of a people to me most dear, and thus will you supply (if my happiness is now aught to you) the only vacancy in the round of pure bliss high Heaven bestows."