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112   HISTORY OF CANADA.

The End of the Siege.—But they still remained encamped before the walls. During the spring Congress troops kept coming into the province, and some of them joined the army before Quebec. There were rumors of intended attack upon the city, entailing constant vigilance on the part of the garrison, who, however, were in good health, while there was much sickness in the camp of the besiegers. Toward the end of April, General Thomas arrived to take command of the Congress troops. Preparations for an active renewal of the siege were in progress when, early in May, Quebec was relieved a second time by the opportune arrival of a British fleet. There were over nine thousand regular troops on board, and General Thomas left the neighborhood of Quebec so quickly that his uneaten dinner was found upon his camp table. His artillery and camp stores were left behind. The British troops marched quickly toward Montreal, and by the beginning of June there were no Congress troops east of Sorel, at the mouth of the Richelieu.

The Winter in Montreal.—During the winter, feeling had run high in Montreal. Wooster, who was in command there, had insisted that the Canadian seigneurs should give up the commissions they held under the British Crown, offering them new appointments under Congress. With much difficulty he obtained the old commissions, but the majority of the Canadian noblesse of Montreal declined to serve in the militia under Congress. Some were so outspoken in their expression of loyalty to British rule that Wooster threatened to banish them from the city if they did not moderate their tone. The failure of Montgomery's assault upon Quebec had not been without effect upon the habitants. They had not received very kindly treatment from the Congress troops. For supplies sold they were offered Congress paper money ; when they objected, forced contributions were levied upon them. Wooster, too, had obliged them to work without pay. All these things inclined them to listen to the advice of the noblesse and the clergy, who had steadily adhered to the royal cause.

Commissioners from Congress.—The progress of events in Canada had excited much interest in Congress. Washington was anxious that the province should fall into line with the older colonies. Otherwise, Canada might be made the base for an in-


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