The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 132

in their march by a very narrow road, to be cut for
them thro' the woods and bushes, and also what I had read of a former
defeat of fifteen hundred French, who invaded the Iroquois country, I
had conceiv'd some doubts and some fears for the event of the campaign.
But I ventur'd only to say, "To be sure, sir, if you arrive well before
Duquesne, with these fine troops, so well provided with artillery, that
place not yet compleatly fortified, and as we hear with no very strong
garrison, can probably make but a short resistance. The only danger I
apprehend of obstruction to your march is from ambuscades of Indians,
who, by constant practice, are dexterous in laying and executing them;
and the slender line, near four miles long, which your army must make,
may expose it to be attack'd by surprise in its flanks, and to be cut
like a thread into several pieces, which, from their distance, can not
come up in time to support each other."

He smil'd at my ignorance, and reply'd, "These savages may, indeed, be
a formidable enemy to your raw American militia, but upon the king's
regular and disciplin'd troops, sir, it is impossible they should make
any impression." I was conscious of an impropriety in my disputing
with a military man in matters of his profession, and said no more.
The enemy, however, did not take the advantage of his army which I
apprehended its long line of march expos'd it to, but let it advance
without interruption till within nine miles of the place; and then,
when more in a body (for it had just passed a river, where the front
had halted till all were come over), and in a more open part of the
woods than any it had pass'd, attack'd its advanced guard by a heavy
fire from behind trees and bushes, which was the first intelligence the
general had of an enemy's being near him. This guard being disordered,
the general hurried the troops up to their assistance, which was done
in great confusion, thro' waggons, baggage, and cattle; and presently
the fire came upon their flank: the officers, being on horseback, were
more easily distinguish'd, pick'd out as marks, and fell very fast; and
the soldiers were crowded together in a huddle, having or hearing no
orders, and standing to be shot at till two-thirds of them were killed;
and then, being seiz'd with a panick, the whole fled with precipitation.

The waggoners took each a horse out of his team and scamper'd;

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 3 [of 3]

Page 7
469 On early marriages 475 Effect of early impressions on the mind 478 The whistle 480 A petition to those who have the superintendency of education 483 The handsome and deformed leg 485 Morals of chess 488 The art of procuring pleasant dreams 493 Dialogue between Franklin and the gout 499 On the death of relatives .
Page 39
) -- -- -- The difficulty of settling the first English colonies in America, at so great a distance from England, must have been vastly greater, than the settling these proposed new colonies: for it would be the interest and advantage of all the present colonies to support these new ones; as they would cover their frontiers, and prevent the growth of the French power behind or near their present settlements; and.
Page 44
No part of these monies was ever paid by the _proprietaries_, or ever raised on their estates; and therefore they can have no pretence of right to a voice in the disposition of them.
Page 87
In fact, the colonies are so little suited for establishing of manufactures, that they are continually losing the few branches they accidentally gain.
Page 91
And if they were under the hard alternative of submitting to one or the other of these schemes for checking their growth, I dare answer for them, they would prefer the latter.
Page 110
To deprive all the colonies of the convenience of paper-money, because it has been charged on some of them, that they have made it an instrument of fraud, is as if all the India, Bank, and other stocks and trading companies were to be abolished, because there have been, once in an age, Mississippi and South-Sea schemes and bubbles.
Page 115
That you may be assured I do not misrepresent this matter, I shall give you the last-mentioned amendment (so called) at full length; and for the truth and exactness of my copy I dare appeal to Mr.
Page 126
We have now gone through five of the six proposed amendments, without discovering any thing on which that censure could be founded; but the _sixth_ remains; which points at a part of the act wherein we must candidly acknowledge there is something, that, in their lordships' view of it, must justify their judgment.
Page 176
_ How many white men do you suppose there are in North America? _A.
Page 186
Page 222
Hence, in some degree, the company's inability to pay their bills; the sinking of their stock, by which millions of property have been annihilated; the lowering of their dividend, whereby so many must be distressed; the loss to government of the stipulated 400,000_l.
Page 227
_ My lords, I am not a native of that country, as these gentlemen are.
Page 239
The breach between the two countries is grown wider, and in danger of becoming irreparable.
Page 244
Page 245
Page 284
" But, though many private persons think almost as highly of their own infallibility as of that of their sect, few express it so naturally as a certain French lady, who, in a little dispute with her sister, said, I don't know how it happens, sister, but I meet with nobody but myself that is always in the right.
Page 332
Secondly, if it is agreed, not to observe the rules exactly, but one party demands indulgencies, he should then be as willing to allow them to the other.
Page 346
--This is therefore most.
Page 353
That _the children of Dan sent of their family five men from their coasts to spie out the.
Page 389