Изображения страниц

by these means their incampments are soon made and soon raised.

Every soldier should have a good fusee with a bayonet of that sort, that he may fire off his fusee with the hayonet fixed; one pistol and a good sword, and one pavilion; to every four men I would give a brass pot, well tinned within, to dress victuals, and a good hatchet.

Of ordnance I would carry eight brass guns, of eighteen, or at least twelve pounds bullet, some hollow bullets, and three or four mortar-pieces of the middle size ; a great number of shells, some field-pieces, store of hand granadoes, and all ingredients for carcases and fire-works, with a good quantity of the best gun-powder, together with all tools necessary for miners and pioneers.

Among the shipping I would have two bomb-ketches. Out of every ship may be drawn a sufficient number of people to serve the batteries, or any service a-shore for some time. These also to be ordered into independent companies.

Besides the forces to be sent from Europe, his Majesty may, out of all his dominions in America, without any danger or prejudice to them, draw a great number of brisk and active people, sending thither before-hand somebody that should carry them his commissions, and encourage them to go where the service should require, and list them to that purpose. The officers would instruct and exercise them in the mean while, until they should be ordered to march towards the rendezvous.

What I propose of the number of people, which may be drawn from every place, may be altered more or less, as the officer sent, and the governors of the respective places, shall judge for the best.

Such an army well governed, and wanting no necessaries, nor supplies of arms and amunition, may, under the command of good officers, conquer and subdue all the West-Indies, and secure to England the greatest part of the riches of the world.

I observed before the ill effects of sharing the plunder, and the bad consequences of it; the remedy may be this. If his Majesty would give order that such plunder, as pieces of plate from churches, publick and private houses, sums of money out of publick houses, pigs of silver, ingots of gold, slaves, coppers, mills for sugar, quantities of indigo, cotton, natto, cocoa, sugars, tobacco, hides, dying wood, &c. be all reserved for the king's use, and suffer nothing to be plundered but cloaths, linnen, and loose money, which may be also considerable. And if, out of the produce of the aforesaid goods retained and reserved, the king would be pleased to give such a gratuity as he may think fit to his standing forces, such perhaps as may amount to half pay, and whole pay to his militia, it would, I conceive, satisfy every body, and prevent disorders and murmurings. I reckon the number of people each colony may send, after this following manner:

[blocks in formation]

His Majesty sending out a general pardon and amnesty to all Buccaneer-pyrates, would soon bring in a great number of them, of all nations. They agree well together against the Spaniards, would be fit for any service, and soon be at Janiaica.

The French may have in America, by what I could observe myself, and learn of others, men fit for service.

In Cyenne,


1500 Guardeloupe,

800 Marie Galante,

200 St. Christophers, 500 Granada,

300 Hispaniola,

5000 Canada,


[blocks in formation]

The Dutch may have also in all,

In Surinam,

Essecape, Berbiche, Eustathia, Saba, Curacao,

900 200 200 200 100 500

2100 men.

part settled.

The Spaniards have not, in all America, by the best informations I could get, one hundred thousand men; and, perhaps, not near so many. They are dispersed into several places, very distant one from another. It is easily to be believed, if we rightly consider the disposition of the Spaniards in general, the barrenness of their women, and the nature of the country, where they are for the most

New-England and Virginia can afford some thousands of men more than I mention; Virginia especially, which has no troublesome neighbours to fear. Two-thirds of the inhabitants of NewEngland, all the people of Pescatway, Acadie, and Newfoundland, live and depend upon the fishing-trade; the best half of their ships go for Spain, Portugal, and the Streights; the rest are employed in voyages to the Southern Colonies; so that most of those people, if we have a war, will be at leisure, and may


serviceable. In wbat , propose about the islands, an objection may arise, that they must keep their people to guard and defend themselves. But this may be remedied, by transporting thither good numbers of Scotch servants, engaged to serve, as usually, for so many years. The planters like them very well, and will freely entertain them. They will soon learn the use of their arms, and help to guard and defend the place.

When I consider the great inconveniences which I have observed to attend giving of the plunder to soldiers, the difficulties, or rather, the impossibilities of dividing it to their content and satisfaction, I cannot but urge and insist again, on what I had but' hinted at before, That his Majesty would be pleased to grant and send his commissions to all the officers to be raised, to encourage them the better; and to allow them all, officers and soldiers, such a pay as they may deserve, and esteem just; considering that they shall have, whilst upon service, all provisions and ammunitions found at the king's charge.

And the king may easily do it, providing in time good store of beef and pork from Ireland; of beef and pork, salt-fish, bisket and pease, from New-England, and a ship or two loaded with salt, if possible, from France, being the best to preserve flesh and fish.

There is, in most parts of America, a vast number of cattle, wild and tame, of sheep, goats, and hogs, finding victuals for every body. Killing and destroying of cattle and stock should be strictly forbidden; and you may procure people, as butchers, and such like, whose whole business would be to dress and salt such meats. There is also, in some places, a great quantity of manatees, or sea-cows, of turtles, and other sorts of fish. The islands, likewise, will furnish abundance of rum, lime-juice, and sugar, to make drink.

If the King would be pleased to send some few officers of the Miut in his fleet, with all things necessary for coining: They may coin the Spanish gold and silver that should fall into our hands, and the army might be paid with it. This way would make a large addition to the English coin, to the great and general benefit of the nation.

The taking of Canada may be easy enough, if we attack it at once, both by sea and land; and not as it was done lately, by very unskilful people. The keeping of Canada, and settling and fortifying that large island of Newfoundland, will hinder the French from fisbing upon the great bank, and consequently diminish greatly, if not totally ruin their maritime power.

Martinico is the only place of strength the French have in America; its Fort-Royal is impregnable any other way than by famine, but it may easily be bombarded, whereby you may ruin and burn the houses and buildings in it; and perhaps the very magazines and cisterns, after wbich they cannot subsist long, and will be forced to surrender.

Granada is of very little strength, having but few inhabitants : its fort is on the top of a bill, and was surprised and taken by one Erasmus, a single Dutch privateer. Its harbour is very large, and capable of holding many of the greatest ships. This island is not subject to hurricanes, its situation lying near Trinity island, and the Spanish coast; and those other places, by which most of the Spanish ships pass in going to the West-India plantations, make it very considerable.

It has many rivers of excellent water; the land is hilly about the harbour, and the north side ; but, towards the south and west, very level ; cocoa trees, and the vanilio, grow there naturally.

In lieu of sending two regiments (as it is discoursed of) to Ja. maica, I would only draw deiachments from all the regiments here in England, and Ireland, perhaps, also, from Scotland ; model them all into independent companies, and give them commanders out of the reformed and half-pay officers.

The regiments, keeping all their officers, would soon recruit, and be filled again, with new soldiers, who would presently be disciplined ; and these independent companies would be as serviceable as if they were regimented, and be of less charge to the nation.

I would also propose to send these companies, as soon as possible, to the north continent of America: for example, two to Newfoundland, six to New-England, four to New-York, and so of all the other companies; it would make no great noise, and alarm no body, not being likely to be thought, or presumed to intend, farther than the defence of all those places. The transport from that northern continent, to the southward, is very easy, and may be done at any time, together with the provisions, all the parts of New England having a great number of ships of their own.

The sending of two regiments to the island of Jamaica will cause many inconveniences. Jamaica is unhealthy, and many will be sick and die, before you can bring them to action. The northern parts of America are as healthy as England. Jamaica lies to the Ieeward of all the French colonies, so that it is very difficult and sometimes impossible, always very tedious, and long, to turn up to the windward; the winds are contrary, and the current is against you, very often so strong, that a brisk, favourable, westerly wind cannot make you overcome it,

I would gather all the forces to the islands of Barbadoes and the Caribbees: they lie to the westward of all the French and Spanish colonies; the wind is always favourable to go to them at pleasure.

I bumbly propose the attacking of the French first. If a war breaks out towards the spring, most of the forces being ready in the Continent of New England, I would begin, by attacking Canada by sea and land in the beginning of the summer; the conquest of it may be thoroughly perfected before the fit time of attempting any considerable action in the southern colonies.

The timing well your attempt is so very necessary, that, without it, you cannot, with any probability, succeed; yet it has been hitherto so little regarded, that all our fleets for the West Indies, in the late war, arrived always, and thought of some action, when the hurricanes began to be feared and expected.

It was very far in June, when we attacked St. Christophers; it was the beginning of it, also, when we landed at Martinico; and it was also in June, when Willmot and Lillingston attacked Port de Paix in Hispaniola.

Had Ruiter been at Martinico any other time but June, he would have certainly taken it. The Dutch committed many errors in their attack; but the only thing, which forced them to withdraw, was, that, it being hurricane time, Ruiter, seeing great appearance of a storm, would not venture his fleet, and caused that sudden retreat.

The French, who were but few, had no other defence, but a very bad pallisado, and a narrow trench, almost filled up


many places, could not possibly have resisted a brisk attack with sword and pistol in hand. But the Dutch must needs land in order, though they saw nobody to oppose their landing, and would not advance upon the enemy, until they had formed their battalions, as if they had been in a pitched battle; they were all this while exposed, from head to foot, to the musquets of the enemy, and the great and small guns of a man of war, which lay in the then careening place, commanded by Monsieur d'Amblimont, who died lately General for the French King in America. The same night the Dutch retreated, the French left and abandoned their fort, judging it untenable, and expecting the Dutch would have stormed it the next morning.

All things should be so ordered, that the fleet and forces may arrive where you intend to make your attack. In the beginning of October, the hurricane time is just over, and you may venture your fleet any where, during nine months, and you have then three months that the heat is but moderate, and the weather, for the most part, very clear and dry; the best time for action.

I would put the forces upon action and attack, as soon as they arrive; and so make the best use of their strength and health, and not stay until the heat of the weather, or any other cause, should pull their courage down, or they should fall sick, and be out of order.

In the West Indies, I would begin with Martinico; take that

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »