« ForrigeFortsæt »
general-the stars are going up." He heaved a heavy sigh, and smiled. He was then carried on board the commodore's ship, where he lingered for a few hours. Just before he breathed his last, the British standard was brought to him; he made a sign to have it placed under his head, and expired without a groan.
The death of General Pike, at such a period, was a great public misfortune; his countrymen did not know half the extent of their loss. Pike was plain and unimposing in his appearance and manners, and to the world seemed little more than an active and intelligent soldier; but it is not easy to say what height of military excellence may not have been reached by a mind like his, stimulated by high-soaring ambition, braced up by principle to habitual dignity of thought, and constantly expanding its views, enlarging its resources, and unfolding its powers, by its own native and unwearied energy.
Gallant spirit! It was thine to wash out with thy life-blood the foul remembrance of our country's shame-of those disgraces which had blasted her honour, and tarnished the ancient glories of her arms. It was thine, in life, in death, to give to your companions in arms a great example of chivalrous honour and heroic courage; it was thine to lead them to the threshold of the temple of fame, and bid them enter on a long career of glory.
. Gallant spirit! Thy country will not forget thee-thou shalt have a noble memory. When a grateful nation confers upon the heroes of Niagara and Erie the laurels they have so nobly earned, she will bid them remember that those laurels were first gathered on the shores of York, and were watered by the blood of a hero; and hereafter, when our children and our children's children shall read the story of patriots and heroes who have greatly fallen in the arms of victory, when their eyes glisten, and their young hearts throb wildly at the kindling theme, they will close the volume which tells of Epaminondas, of Sidney, or of Wolfe, and proudly exclaim, "And we, too, had our Montgo mery and our Pike."
[Concluded from p. 301.]
About 11 o'clock we perceived that our people had gained the mountains, and were driving the Happahs from height to height, who fought as they retreated, and daring our men to follow them, with threatening gesticulations. A native, who bore the American flag, waved it in triumph as he skipped along the mountains. They were attended by a large concourse of friendly natives, armed as usual, who generally kept in the rear of our men. Mauina alone was seen in the advance of the whole, and was well known by his scarlet cloak and waving plumes; in about an hour we lost sight of the comba ants, and saw no more of them until about 4 o'clock, when they were discovered descending the mountains on their return, the natives bearing five dead bodies slung on poles. Mr. Downes and his men soon afterwards arrived at the camp, overcome with the fatigue of an exercise to which they had been so little accustomed. He informed me that on his arrival near the tops of the mountains, the Happahs, stationed on the summit, had assailed him and his men with stones and spears; that he had driven them from place to place until they had taken refuge in a fortress erected in the manner described, on the brow of a steep hill; here they all made a stand, to the number of between three and four thousand; they dared our people to ascend this hill, at the foot of which they had made a halt to take breath, when the word was given by Mr. Downes to rush up the hill; at that instant a stone struck him in the belly, and laid him breathless on the ground, and at the same time one of our people was pierced with a spear through his neck. This occasioned a halt, and they were about abandoning
any further attempt on the place, but Mr. Downes soon recovered, and finding himself able to walk, gave orders for a charge. Hitherto our party had done nothing, not one of the enemy had to their knowledge been wounded; they scoffed at our men, exposed to them their posteriors, and treated them with the utmost contempt and derision. Our friendly natives also began to think we were not so formidable as we pretended; it became, therefore, absolutely necessary that the fort should be taken at all hazards. Our people gave three cheers, and rushed on through a shower of spears and stones, which the natives threw from behind their strong barrier, and it was not until our people entered the fort that they thought of retreating; five were at this instant shot dead, and one in particular fought until the muzzle of the gun was presented to his forehead, when the top of his head was entirely blown off. As soon as this place was taken, all further resistance was at an end; the friendly natives collected the dead, while many ran down in a village situated in the valley for the purpose of securing the plunder, large quantities of which, consisting of drums, mats, callabashes, and other household utensils, as well as hogs, cocoanuts, and other fruits; they also brought with them large quantities of that plant with which they make their finest cloth, which grows nearly as large as the wrist, and is highly esteemed by them. They came also laden with plunder, which the enemy had not time to remove; for they could not be made to believe that a handful of men could drive them. It was shocking to see the manner they treated such as were knocked over with a shot; they rushed on them with their war clubs, and soon despatched them; then each seemed anxious to dip his spear in his blood, which nothing whatever could induce him to wipe off; the, spear from that time bore the name of the dead warrior, and its value, in consequence of that trophy, was greatly enhanced.
The Typee War.
The Tayeehs, the Happahs, and Shauenees, now made fresh complaints of the insults and aggressions of the Typees. One they had threatened to drive off the land: they had thrown stones at, and otherwise insulted individuals of the other tribes. The
Tayeehs and Happahs became very solicitous for war, and began to utter loud complaints, that, as all the other tribes in the island had formed an alliance with us, they should be tolerated in their insolence, and excused from supplying us as the rest had done; the more distant had now discontinued bringing in their supplies, and the other tribes had fallen off considerably, complaining that we had nearly exhausted all their stock, while the Typees were enjoying abundance; lead us to the Typees, said they, and we shall be enabled to furnish you from their valley; you have long threatened them, and yet permit them to offer violence to us; and while you have rendered every other tribe tributary to you, you permit them to triumph with impunity. Our canoes are in readiness, our warriors impatient, and for less provocations, had you not been here, we should have been engaged in hostilities. Let us punish those Typees, bring them on the same terms to which we have agreed, and the whole island will then be at peace, a thing hitherto unknown, but the advantage of which we can readily conceive. These were the sentiments expressed by the chiefs and warriors of the Tayeehs and Happahs. Tavee seemed determined to keep aloof from all quarrels; he was separated from us by the valley of the Typees, and they had it in their power to retort on him at pleasure; he and his people concluded it, therefore, the wisest to bear their insults and dodge their stones in the best manner they could, not, however, without complaining occasionally to me on the subject; but they seemed determined to take no active part with us in the war.
Finding that it was absolutely necessary to bring the Typees to terms, or endanger our good understanding with the other tribes, I resolved to endeavour to bring about a negotiation with them, and to back it with a force sufficient to intimidate them.
On the 27th of November I informed the Tayeehs and Happahs that I should next day go to war with the Typees, agree. ably to my original plans, and directed Gattaneuah to proceed on board the Essex Junior, with two persons, who were to perform the office of ambassadors, and on the arrival of the ship in their bay, were to be sent to the Typees, offering the same terms of peace as were accepted by the others.
The Essex Junior sailed in the afternoon, and I proceeded next
morning at 3 o'clock with five boats, accompanied by ten war canoes, blowing their conchs as a signal by which they could be kept together. One of our boats separated from the others, passed the bay, and did not rejoin us again till the middle of the day. We arrived at the Typee landing at sunrise, and were joined by ten war canoes from the Happahs. The Essex Junior soon after arrived and anchored, and the tops of all the neighbouring mountains were covered with the Tayeeh and Happah warriors, armed with their clubs, spears, and slings: the beach was covered with the warriors who came with the canoes, and who joined us from the hills. Our force did not amount to a less number than 5,000 men, but not a Typee, or any of their dwellings, were to be seen, for the whole length of the beach, extending upwards of a quarter of a mile, was a clear level plain, which extended back about 100 yards; a high and almost impenetrable thicket bordered on this plain, and the only trace we could perceive, which we were informed led to the habitations, was a narrow pathway which wound through the swamp. The canoes were all hauled on the beach the Tayeehs on the right, the Happahs on the left, and our four boats in the centre. We only waited for reinforcements from the Essex Junior; our interpreter, our ambassadors, and Gattaneuah, landed on the ship's anchoring: I went on board to hasten them on shore, directing Lieutenant Downes to bring with him 15 men; these, with the 28 on shore, I supposed would be fully sufficient to bring them to terms. On my return to the beach I found every one in arms. The Typees had appeared in the bushes, and had pelted our people with stones while 1 quietly eating their breakfast; they, as well as the Tayeehs and Happahs, were all on their guard, but no hostilities had been of fered on our part. I had brought with me one of those I had intended to employ as ambassadors; he had intermarried with the Typees, and was privileged to go among them; I furnished him with a white flag, and sent him to inform the Typees that I had come to offer them peace, but was prepared for war; that I only required that they should submit to the same terms as those entered into by the other tribes, and that terms of friendship would be much more pleasing to us than any satisfaction which I expected to derive from chastising them. In a few minutes after the departure of my messenger, he came running back the picture of