Siege of Quebec City
Copy of a letter from General CARLETON to General HOWE, dated Quebec, Jan. 12, 1776
The 5th of December Mr. Montgomery took post at St. Croix, within less than two miles of Quebec, with some field artillery; his heavy cannon were landed at Caprouge; at the same time Arnold’s party took possession of the other avenues leading to the town, and prevented all communication with the country.
The 7th a woman stole into town with letters, addressed to the principal merchants, and promising them great indulgence in case of their compliance.
Inclosed was a letter to me in very extraordinary language, and a summons to deliver up the town; the messenger was sent to prison for a few days, and drummed out.
To give more efficacy to these letters, five small mortars were brought to St. Rock’s, and a battery of five cannon and one howitzer raised upon the heights, within about seven hundred yards of the walls.
Soon after Arnold appeared with a white flag, and said he had letter for me, but was refused admittance, and ordered to carry back his letter.
After every preparatory stratagem had been used to intimidate our wretched garrison, as Mr. Montgomery was pleased to call it, an assault was given the 31st of December, between four and five in the morning, during a snow storm from the north-east.
The alarm was general: from the side of the river St. Lawrence, along the fortified front, round to the bason, every part seemed equally threatened.
Two real attacks took place upon the Lower Town: one under Cape Diamond, led by Mr. Montgomery, the other by Mr. Arnold, upon the part called the Saut au Matelôt.
This at first met with some success, but in the end was stopped.
A sally from the Upper Town under captain LAWS attacked their rear, and sent in many prisoners, captain M’DOUGAL afterwards reinforced this party, and followed the rebels into the post they had taken.
Thus Mr. Arnold’s corps, himself and a few others excepted, who were wounded and carried off early, were completely ruined. They were caught as it were in a trap; we brought in their five mortars and one cannon.
The other attack was soon repulsed with slaughter. Mr. Montgomery was left among the dead.
The rebels have on this assault between six and seven hundred men, and between forty and fifty officers, killed, wounded, and taken prisoners.
We had only one lieutenant of the Navy doing duty as a captain in the garrison, and four rank and file killed, and thirteen rank and file wounded, two of the latter are since dead.
You will be pleased to transmit a copy of my letter to the secretary of state, by the first opportunity, for his majesty’s information, &c.
The Lady’s Magazine; or, Entertaining Companion for the FAIR SEX, appropriated solely to their Use and Amusement, For JUNE 1776, (London).
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