WITHIN REACH OF THE ST. LAWRENCE 57
Mr. Cook told me, "that no time was allowed for the women and children to escape, and my mother hustled me into the cellar for protection from the cannon balls that British gunboats in the river began throwing at the American head-quarters."
Nelson Casselman, a grandson of the Cassel-man who held the homestead in 1813, showed me the cellar in which his grandmother hid the sheep and the little Casselmans together. "The Americans," said Mr. Casselman, "took the family's horses for transport, killed the cows for beef, and made soup for the officers' mess from the chickens."
But the loss of horses was not all one-sided. After the battle, a couple of American horsemen on rearguard duty were suddenly confronted by a man named Adams and ordered to surrender. The Americans, believing the musket which Adams held could carry further than their pistols and that his bayonet was more dangerous than their swords, promptly complied. Adams then marched his prisoners back to the British commander, who was so pleased with the exploit that he told Adams to keep the horses, and for years afterwards the animals were used in his farm work. The joke was on the Americans; Adams had not so much as a single charge for his gun when he captured his two prisoners.
After the battle a number of American wounded were carried into the Casselman home, one of these an old man. Mr. Casselman told me the story of his death as he had heard it from his parents. "He was an old man whose sands of life were nearly run out in any case. As the