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THE WAR OF 1812   155

By this time the men of the 49th had arrived, and Fitz-Gibbon, to impress the Americans with his strength, led them into view in open files, and took up a position threatening to cut off Boerstler's retreat. Firing had ceased and FitzGibbon, who had no desire to see it begun again, at present, decided to try what a demand for surrender would accomplish. With a white handkerchief on his sword he advanced and demanded, in the name of Major De Haren, who was known to be approaching, the surrender of Boerstler and his men. The desire to avoid bloodshed, the strength of his force, and his inability to control the Indians in case the Americans should fall into their hands were, he pointed out, the reasons for his generous proposal. His total force at this time was about one-half that of the enemy.

Boerstler was expecting reinforcements and desired delay. FitzGibbon feared that these might arrive before De Haren, and so, instead of giving until evening as Boerstler wished, he replied that the commanding officer could not control the Indians, and asked for an answer in five ninutes.

Boerstler knew that a large body of Indians was opposed to him, and in his fear he exaggerated their number three-fold. He had seen, too, the uniformed troops coming on the field; he had heard bugles sounding in different parts of the forest, intimating that he was surrounded by a considerable army. His men were exhausted and in a panic, and to save them from the Indians he agreed to Fitz-Gibbon's terms. Meanwhile Captain Hall with twenty dragoons from Chippawa had joined FitzGibbon, but even then his little force all told did not amount to 300 men. While the negotiations were under way, Major De Haren fortunately arrived from Twelve Mile Creek with 200 men, and was able to sign the terms of surrender. The militia and volunteers were allowed to go to their homes on parole; the officers retained their arms, horses, and baggage; the non-commissioned officers and regular soldiers laid down their arms at the head of the British col-


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