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HISTORY OF CANADA.   111

citadel. He joined Arnold before Quebec very early in December, their united forces amounting to less than two thousand men. Carleton had a mixed garrison of about 1,600. He had impressed seamen from vessels in the basin of Quebec, and he had also some blue-jackets from a war vessel then in the harbor. The regulars did not exceed three hundred ; the rest were volunteers, largely French-Canadians. Carleton had issued an order that all those liable for militia duty should enrol within four days or leave the town. Those who left were largely English-speaking sympathizers with Congress. The population of Quebec was at this time about five thousand. The town was well provisioned for a siege, and the walls were manned with 150 pieces of artillery. Montgomery bombarded the town during the whole of December, all the time anxiously on the lookout for a chance to carry it by assault. Carleton refused to hold any communication with men whom he deemed rebels, and resolutely held out.

Montgomery's Attack Repulsed.—At length a plan was matured by which it was hoped the town could be taken. While feigned assaults should be made at all the gates which faced the plains, Montgomery was to march along the strand from Wolfe's Cove and storm the barricades erected at the western end of the lower town ; Arnold was to enter at the north-eastern angle, by way of the parish of St. Hoch and the low lands along the St. Charles. After carrying the barricades there he was to join Montgomery at the foot of the street leading to the upper town. They never met. In the early hours of the New Year morning (1776), amid falling snow, Montgomery marched to carry out his part in the assault. Contrary to expectation, Captain Chabot, in charge of the first barricade, was on the alert, and a murderous fire greeted the Congress troops. Montgomery fell at the first volley, and his detachment withdrew in confusion, leaving the dead body of their leader behind them. Arnold, too, had met with opposition. The first barricade was carried, but Arnold was wounded, and he had to be carried to the rear, the command falling to Captain Morgan. Fighting bravely, the Congress troops worked their way well in toward the rendezvous agreed upon, but were finally surrounded and forced to surrender. Killed, wounded, and prisoners, the besiegers lost nearly five hundred men, and were therefore in no condition to attempt a further assault.


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