20 Episode results for "Silas Deane"
ARP173 Treaties with France
"Hello, and thank you for joining the American Revolution today episode 173 treaties with France the arrival of Benjamin Franklin and France at the end of 1776 had heralded great excitement in France American Liberty became a celebrated cause and many French officers had crossed the Atlantic to participate in a great contest the French government. However, took a much more cautious view Kings rarely wanted to encourage excited cause of the people to overthrow their King wage, even if it was an enemy King that sort of thinking could set a bad precedent that might you know result in the king of France losing his head someday even so many fac leaders. Thought the American Rebellion might be a great opportunity to weaken their British rival. An ongoing Colonial Rebellion would occupy the British Ministry and sat the Empire of men and money a week and Britain might allow France to retake some of the colonies lost to bring in Prior Wars at the same time France was not prepared economically or militarily to go to war with Britain. Openly supporting the Rebellion would bring on just such a war. So despite the desire of the American Commissioners to form an alliance with France the ministry played hard to get it refused to recognize the American diplomatic team in any official capacity or recognize American independence. Of course, France had been funneling covert military aid via the arms smuggling business set up by Silas off NPR beaumarchais, whenever Britain called out France in these activities officials were always shocked shocked that a few bad apples were engaged in such Behavior wage. And they acted quickly to shut it down greatest fear of those like French foreign minister version was that they would get caught up in a war with Britain and that Britain would defeat or make a settlement with the Americans that would allow Britain to focus its full military might and wrath against France. That was the fear that prevented France from committing open lead to support of the United States up until this time the American Commissioners and France Benjamin Franklin Silas Deane and Arthur Lee spent all of 1777 trying to cajole France into a commitment but rather than getting fresh to put a ring on it. They got more of a come on baby, you know, I love you, but I can't leave my wife right now. We have to keep our relationship on the down-low for a little longer through late summer and early fall of 1777 with news of burgoyne's capture of Fort Ticonderoga Club. And how's victory at Brandywine reaching Paris the ministry thought the Rebellion might be coming to an end at that point. It ceased all written communication with the Commissioners officials suggested a friendship Captain accused of delivering War supplies to the Americans and the government recovered several prize ships captured by the Americans which were in French ports and returned home to their British owners. If the rebellion was about to end France wanted to be able to maintain its relationship with Britain and it was perfectly ready to kick the Americans to the curb in order to protect themselves from British wrath Frances outlook on the prospects of the war changed when news of the surrender of burgoyne's army at Saratoga reached France in December and their behavior as a result also began to change the victory at Saratoga was proof that the Americans were a serious challenge to the British they could defeat them. Army of British regulars in the field and force the surrender of an entire Army something that not even European armies had done before news of General Washington's defeat at Germantown also helped convince the French government that it was time to put a ring on it with America Washington had lost at Brandywine and then lost Philadelphia to General Howe's Army for many countries a military defeat and the loss of one's Capital would force them to sue for peace. France was impressed that the Continentals were prepared to counter attacks so quickly by breaking at Germantown it made clear that there was no intent to give up even if this attack was not successful in late November Franklin received word that the Americans house yaphe at Saratoga. The letter was written before burgoyne's final surrender, but after it became clear that surrender was inevitable Franklin passed along this information to the court of Versailles home two days later King Louis personally signed a request that the commission resubmit a request for formal alliance with France Franklin took a couple of weeks to draft the proposed. Hey, submitting it to Versailles on December 8th Seventeen seventy seven, although he would not know it for months on the very same day December 8th the Continental Congress York approved an order for Silas Deane to return to America to give an account of his Affairs in Europe. This was another leap in the long-running feud between a Arthur Lee and Silas Deane in earlier episodes. I talked about Lee's annoyance that beaumarchais and Dean were benefiting from the covert Aid that the French government wanted Dead. Go to America, the two men had arranged sales contracts to send War supplies on credit to America in exchange for Promises of American Tobacco to be sold in Europe with Lee wanted in on those contracts and the valuable commissions that came along with them. He had for some time sent word back to important people in America that Dean Palmer's Shea were ripping off America by selling War supplies that the French government had secretly offered to provide free of charge Lee also complained that both Dean and Franklin had British spies working on their staffs and that they frequently refused to keep Dean up to speed about their discussions with officials at Versailles since Lee had two brothers serving in the Continental Congress Richard Henry Lee and Francis Lightfoot Lee his accusations. Had a ready audience. Others that were receptive to Lee's accusations included John and Samuel Adams and a number of other New England delegates who also had questions after hearing these accusations long as they were on the verge of signing a treaty gain remained in France for several more months before his return home to clear his name Lee is determined opposition to his two fellow Commissioners. However, remained an obstacle to negotiations Franklin and Dean largely seem to keep lie out of the details of many negotiations Leslie had complained however, they had to include lie in the treaty discussions that began in December. They did not trust this man and with good reason Lee was still not responding with men in London. They seem to think that the British might be willing to come to a political compromise with the us if they knew France was about to form an alliance dead. Lee had lived in London for many years up until late 1776 when he received his appointment as a commissioner to Paris. He still had many friends among the league leaders in London Lee was not the only leak of course Franklin's personal secretary Edward Bancroft was also a paid British agent there were others on London's payroll as well. Pretty much nothing. The Commissioners did would escape the watchful eye of the north Ministry. Although France had called for the negotiations. It did not seem to be in any hurry to complete them at first France said it needed to operate in concert with Spain France and Spain had their own treaty, which obligated France to get Spain's approval on any agreements related to the Americas Spain had already worked with France to provide some covert Aid to the Americans. So it was not like this would come as a complete surprise to the Dead. Spain however quickly sent word back that they were not ready to support American independence and would not approve any treaty with this negotiations began to falter France was happy to take its time getting there. But the Americans were not they needed more Aid and they needed it right away. Also their wage is the danger of a military setback in America that could cause France to end the negotiation at the same time officials in London were on high alert that an alliance between France an American colonies would drastically alter the balance of power. Britain could be fighting another War around the world to protect all of her colonies many of which it had just taken from France and Spain in the 1760s King George the third approve deployment of an agent to open up negotiations with the American Commissioners in Paris. The British sent Paul Wentworth who was the same man who had recruited many of the spies who were currently working with the American Commissioners when Wentworth reached Paris, here's a complex series of instructions to Silas team so that they could hold a secret meeting his anonymous note instructed Dean that he could find a coach at a specific place on the off-road outside of town there Dean would receive a note instructing him to go to a room where he could meet with the secret. Negotiator gains response was not quite so secretive. You said a response back saying he would be in his office the next day and then if the caller wanted to stop by Dean would be happy to receive him Wentworth and Dean eventually arranging a dinner to discuss the outline of ending hostilities. London was prepared to allow the Americans to have their own Congress. The American colonies would not be subject to any internal laws enacted by Parliament. They would only have to respect authority in matters of trade or foreign policy further Parliament would repeal any objectionable laws that had prompted the ongoing protests since the end of the seven years war effort to further sweeten the deal any Americans who helped secure. This piece could receive knighthoods Pura jism jobs money or other rewards for their help if Britain had made this offer in 1774 or even late 1775. The Continental Congress would have been ecstatic it offered them everything. They wanted even more than the First Continental Congress had requested in its petitions. However, it was not 1775 anymore. America had considered itself independent for a year and half two and half years of war had split the two sides and split them irrevocably further the American had proven that they could defeat the British militarily and had no desire to go back to being colonies. The one thing Britain did not offer was recognition of full America gain independence and by this time American negotiators would accept nothing less. The Commissioners would not meet formally with Wentworth or any other British need laters. Then the Americans received word that Spain had rejected the alliance and would not recognize American independence the momentum in favor of signing the treaty quickly off of operated as the French government re-evaluated its position moving forward without it's Spanish. Ally was a much riskier Prospect for France in Rome. It's Benjamin Franklin did take a meeting with British agent Wentworth during the first week of January 1778. According to Wentworth. He even went so far as to discuss the possibility of recognition of Independence Franklin agreed that this was a good offer. But added idiot did not come sooner. It appears Franklin had no intention of actually negotiating peace terms with Britain rather Franklin wanted the word of his secret negotiations with Britain to leak back to French officials wage. If France believe that Britain and America might come to an amicable piece Francis chance to benefit from the British weakness would evaporate with it by letting the French know they were talking to the British Franklin forced foreign minister version and the French to step up and negotiate a treaty without delay Franklin's Gambit worked dead. Two days after Franklin's meeting with Wentworth French officials asked him. What would be necessary to have the Commissioners and their negotiations with Britain over the next few weeks off the Commissioners worked with French negotiator Conrad Alexander Girard to produce a mutually agreeable Treaty of Alliance and Treaty of Amity and commerce the first treaty created a military alliance between France and the United States. It guaranteed that the United States would retain control of any land conquered in the war dead including formerly French Quebec France would take Bermuda and other Island colonies in the West Indies that had lost in the last war with Britain as well. As any other Islands. It might capture. Both countries would ate each other in the likely impending war with Britain and neither country. Would Sign A Separate Peace with Britain until the other agreed dead? Another article invited other countries to join their Alliance this Clause was pretty clearly targeted at Spain even if it had not mentioned the country explicitly the trade created a permanent alliance between the two countries lasting Beyond The Hope for victory over Britain the Treaty of Alliance. As I said was one of only two treaties that the negotiators were trying to finalize the other one was known as the Treaty of Amity and commerce and this one caused a little more controversy II Treaty was essentially a trade agreement between the US and friends. You have to remember that there was no such thing as free trade during this era most of the larger Empires required their colonies to trade only with the mother country wage and no one else. It was how they retained their wealth and power. Trade between Sovereign countries did happen, but it was not a given the Treaty of Amity and commerce assured that the United States would have a European market for its trade goods and gave France access to much desired raw materials from America Beyond allowing General trade that treaty pledged protection of vessels from the other country club in each country has jurisdiction. Each country would restore property to the other have captured by Pirates privateers and warships could use each other's ports each country would provide protection to ships within their Waters and provide assistance on the high seas. Either side would commission enemy privateers against the other nor would they allow enemy privateers use of their Choice Sports? Both countries would appoint consoles and agents to work out of ports in the other country authorities in both countries could search ships for Contraband, but guaranteed due process took Contraband seized on the high seas ships of war or privateers could search Merchant ships only once Merchant ships would carry passports and manifests private parties of either country could purchase and own land in the other they could not however fish off of each other waters other than the Banks of Newfoundland both parties also retain the right to trade with enemy States as long as the goods were not declared to be Contraband. There was also an agreement that if the treaty ever ended both countries would give the merchant ships systems protection in their territory. This allowed for time to get the word out to Merchant ships about the change in status and help to articles of the 33 article treaty cause some real contention with Arthur Lee. The only lawyer on the American side objected to articles 11 and 12. These gave the US duty-free access to a molasses from the French island counties, but gave the French duty-free access to all exports from America lead believe this was too one-sided and gave a great trade advantage to France with the two other Commissioners Franklin and Dean were not nearly as concerned first. They just wanted to treaty in place even if it was not perfect having a French trading partner would be a huge coup for the United States. Secondly as Merchants they weren't exactly crazy about their own government being able to Levy export duties on Goods shipped abroad. Anyway at first Leah suggested to the other Commissioners, but the next day insisted that they write back to the French negotiators and insist that articles 11 and 12 be re-written the French. However, she called firm and refuse to make any changes this dispute which held up final ratification became another source of dispute between lie on the one side and Franklin and 15 on the other by February 5th. 1778. The two sides were ready to sign the treaties. Although Franklin was well known in France for wearing his simple quote Brown Homespun code to all events on this occasion. He wore a much fancier blue velvet suit. It was the same suit. He had worn almost exactly four years earlier. In London when he was humiliated in the cockpit for his revelation of private correspondence that incident had marked the end of his career as an agent in Britain when Silas Deane asked Franklin why he wore the suit that day Franklin responded for a little revenge and then he recounted his day of humiliation in the cockpit and London having shown up on the 5th that Commissioners were told that Gerard was sick and could not meet with them instead. They had to return the next day February 6th, the Commissioners on behalf of the US and Girard on behalf of France signed the treaty on February 6th, Seventeen seventy eight except lyrics need to sign the Treaty of Amity and commerce while Girard signature committed France to the new treaties, France still wanted to keep the treaty a secret for a few more weeks while yep It's still attempted to get Spain on board with the new treaty the parties agreed to keep it a secret Franklin then gave the treaty to his secretary Edward Bancroft off the British spy immediately made a copy and had it in London less than two days later a month later on March 13th, the French Ambassador in London formally informed the north Ministry that France had recognized American independence four days after that on March 17th. Britain declared war on France with all that took the open King Louie formally received the American Commissioners at court for the first time on March 20th back in America the Congress at York. Joyfully received of the trees. It did not receive the actual treaties until May 2nd. But as soon as it got them approved them on May 4th the next day May 5th it rejected. Articles 11 and 12 based on Arthur Lee's letters and those controversial trade rules would be removed from the final treaties that aside the treaties marked a new stage of wage war no longer with the war be a simple Rebellion. It was now becoming a new world war between the powers of Europe. I met fifth after receiving word of congress's approval Washington issued a general order that quote upon a signal given the whole Army will has a long live the king of France next week. We're going to hear how London is dealing with these very changed circumstances. Hi, thanks for joining the American Revolution podcast after show. Thanks as always to train aunts and George Davis for their continued support at the Alexander Hamilton club level on patreon. Thanks also to James Kerrigan who made a generous one-time donation via PayPal and to George Waller who made a generous one-time donation via venmo. George is also a patron and supporter at the Minuteman level. So I'm doubly grateful for the double support this week. We looked at the final months of negotiations just led to the 1st franco-american treaties making France America's oldest Ally and before you all start sending your emails about how Morocco recognize the US before France. I really don't consider that the same thing you'll probably read on trivia sites on the internet about how Morocco was really the first country to recognize the United States. A few months before the treaties with France Sultan Muhammad, the third of Morocco issued a decree opening ports to American ships because the explicitly recognized us ships as being separate from England people claim that this is an implicit recognition of American independence, but in larger scheme of things the sultan was just looking to allow more trade. It wasn't a treaty and really didn't do anything significant to benefit the us or anyone else. So as far as I'm concerned French recognition was the first real recognition of United States as an independent nation. And France is America's first, and oldest Ally now Benjamin Franklin gets most of the credit for convincing France to finalize treaties, and I think deservedly so Of course events of the war were the most important factor in getting France to go along but Franklin's popularity and his ability to play into French fears of a British American conciliation and his General personality and getting along with the elite of France all helped to push along the negotiations. I think Silas Deane also deserves credit, especially given the unfair criticisms that he would have to weather over the coming years. He really deserved better Arthur leafy third commissioner in France. Just well, I still think he was more of a hinderance to the whole Affair in the months following the treaties Congress of points Franklin to become Minister plenty of potent area of France and effectively had the Diplomatic Corps for All European relations with the United States Silas Deane returns to America to confront the charges against him. Which originated dog Arthur Lee and we'll be discussing those in a future episode the charges generally were never proven and in my opinion were completely unfounded but they were never took less devastating to Dean's career. John Adams is already on his way to replace Silas Deane. Although Adams would go on to have a lengthy diplomatic career home. He was not a particularly diplomatic guy and would regularly get into squabbles with his fellow diplomats Arthur Lee after all this was supposed to go to Spain to walk on the lights with that country. The American Commissioners would have been pretty happy to get rid of him. However, the Spanish would not let him into the country. Again Lea wage, of course had visited Spain before this, but Spain was not ready to go to war with Britain and they thought that allowing an American Diplomat into the country would only help push it toward them. Or that it was trying to avoid instead Lee remained in Paris. Eventually, he would return to America and would end up taking a seat in the Continental Congress will also hear more from the French negotiator of the treaties Conrad Alexandra Gerard who will end up traveling to America to become Francis first ambassador to the United States home and I'm sure his adventures in America will come up in future episodes. I've already recommended a few books in past episodes that discuss in detail the history of US deploy thousands and I relied on those books again for this episode. But since I've already mentioned them, I don't want to recommend them a second time. You can find them listed at the bottom of my blog entry for this episode or on my website under my list of past recommendations, but for my book recommendation this week, I'm going to recommend a song. Newly published book on an entirely different topic about a week and a half ago. I released a special episode interviewing James Kirby Martin about the Saratoga campaign. The rejection Professor Martin was on the lecture circuit at the time was that he had recently written a chapter in a new book called The Ten key campaigns of the American Revolution. It's a good overall summary of the war with a separate chapter written by a different expert on the ten military campaigns that made up the Revolutionary War the books editor name is Mark Edward lender. As I said, the book was published just a few months ago and is available wherever you like to buy your books. If you really like to dig in depth into a particular wage battle and you want a six hundred page Book on a one specific battle. This is not the book you're looking for. If you like the military aspect of this era and want to see a jackass. Summary that covers the entire War then the ten key campaigns would be a good book choice for you. So if that interests you the book again is called the ten key campaigns of the American Revolution and the editor of the book is Mark Edward lender. If you want to read more specifically about today's topic the treaties with France, you might want to try this week online recommendation archive.org has a pamphlet called the treaties of 1778. This is a seventy page pamphlet that includes the treaties with side-by-side English and French translations, the first third or so of the book is a really great introduction into the topic that was written when the book was published. There's also the instructions that Congress originally sent to the Commissioners and Seventeen Seventy-Six and includes several other really helpful supporting documents that go along with the treaties so dead. If you like to geek out on primary source documents like I do and you'll probably want to read the original treaties and this is a good place to get them. The pamphlet was originally published by The Institute for all said and Washington DC in 1928 just in time for the sesquicentennial of the treaty for some reason though archive.org thinks it is still under copyright, which means you can only borrow the book there are no permanent downloads if you want full copies of the treaties that you want to download and keep em, I have included links to other sources on my blog that will allow that download. I like this pamphlet though because as I said, it gives a little more context to the treaties and includes lots of faithful supporting documents, as always you can search for the document directly on archive.org or use the link that I've included on my blog for this episode at log. And rev podcast.com. Well, that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week for another American Revolution podcast.
Episode 115 Congress and French Diplomacy
"Hello thank you for joining the American Revolution Today Episode One fifteen the Continental Congress and French diplomacy. I'm stepping away from the war today to catch up on what the Continental Congress has been doing. We last left Congress in early July seventeen seventy six just after it approved the declaration of independence yet even after approving the language of the Declaration on July fourth if Congress immediately turned to other business that same afternoon Congress voted on a diplomatic delegation to Pittsburgh to me with Indian tribes and held another vote on providing the board of war with authority to hire employees to make Flint's for the army and several other matters in other words. There was no time to rest on their laurels or even reflect much on independence. The delegates did not even get around to creating the final draft of the declaration ration- for several more weeks. Most of them signed the copy that we today regard as the original on August second in fact back thousands of copies had already circulated around the country and we're already on their way across the Atlantic before anyone signed what we consider the original declaration that colouration Congress simply filed away that signed copy it did not make any formal attempt to send that or any copy over to London. This was a declaration to the world not a petition to their former leaders turning to other matters the three most important ongoing committees in the fall fall of seventeen seventy six with the board of war the committee tasked with drafting the articles of confederation and the Secret Committee of Correspondence Indi- which handled foreign diplomacy the late summer and fall of seventeen seventy six were of course chaotic months for the war Congress Congress Watch General George Washington Lose New York and New Jersey as his army eventually fell back to just outside Philadelphia by the end of the year here in the North Congress saw General Benedict Arnold lose the battle of Alcorn Bay opening upstate New York for invasion unfortunately fortunately for the Patriots the British decided to hold off on that invasion until the following spring but still things did not seem to be going well for the continental war effort aside from the day to day issues of running the army one of the board of wars most contentious activities was promoting officers general Washington made some recommendations but did not press too hard for fear of infringing on civilian control of the army after Washington Shing Tin started losing battle after battle during the British invasion of New York Congress had lost interest in his views anyway. Many were debating the idea of selecting a new commander for the Army State Representation. Among generals also remained a bone of contention. Although New England provided most of the soldiers soldiers a disproportionate number of top officers came from southern states John Adams and others from New England had supported this tactic in a year earlier because they wanted to get the southern states onboard with going to war but by this time they wanted to see more new Englanders in top positions Titians in August Congress promoted four new major generals off from New England Got William Heath of Massachusetts Joseph Spencer Spencer of Connecticut John Sullivan of New Hampshire and Daniel Green of Rhode Island missing from that list was another new Englander Benedict Arnold of Connecticut Arnold thought he deserved promotion but all four of those men who were promoted were already senior to him as Brigadier Qadeer generals so he patiently waited for his turn the sides at the time he was preparing to fight the battle of alcorn island after which Congress would certainly see the merit in promoting him congress also promoted six new brigadier generals in August three from New England James Reid John Nixon and Samuel Parsons to from New York Alexander McDougall and James Clinton and one from Pennsylvania Arthur Sinclair. This led to push back from the southern colonies. The board had to bring in more southern balance by naming four more southern generals in September Adam Stevens of Virginia Christopher Gadston and William Poultry of South Carolina and Lackland Mackintosh of Georgia in October. They decided to add a couple more generals William Maxwell of New Jersey and William Smallwood of Maryland. Now don't worry. You don't need to remember all these names. I'll I'll talk more about each of these guys when they do something interesting. Congress's disappointment with the militia during the New York area fighting also persuaded many delegates of the need for a more professional and well trained standing army. They accepted Washington's recommendation of three year enlistment. What's up until this time. Most enlargements were a maximum of one year with the longer enlistment. They rely on a corps of trained continental soldiers when things got tough. One of the problems with a standing army was that they were expensive. Congress still had no taxing authority because because they could not even agree on a general outline on how to collect taxes they were paying for everything with paper money that they just printed this. This was essentially a promise to provide real hard currency at some future point churning out so much paper money already combined and with no plan after a year and a half on how they were GonNa make good on all this paper had caused serious devaluation even with the amount they had produced they still did not have enough even that paper money to pay the army or provides soldiers with the basic necessities of food clothing and weaponry the board of war did its best to get what it could and to keep the continental army together even as British push them out of New York and back toward Philadelphia while trying to deal with these pressing war issues congress also had been trying to put together articles of confederation since seventeen seventeen seventy five long before they even started debating independence without the articles congress really had no basis for operating or doing much of anything it you some general rules of order that the members knew from their colonial legislatures but they were essentially making everything up as they we went along there was no set of rules that gave Congress any authority to do anything or how they should operate on July twelfth seventeen eighteen seventy six congress began debate on a proposed draft from John Dickinson at Dickinson himself did not participate in this debate he had left Congress to command a Pennsylvania Battalion deployed to New York to help stop the British invasion. They're congress would debate this matter later on and off for the next year and a half without reaching any consensus the big issues involved whether each state should continue to get one vote or whether state population should determine representation also there was debate over how to tax the state's someone that attacks tax the population others wanted to tax the combined wealth of colony. Finally there was a big debate over competing colonial land claims many of the colonies had claims on land that conflicted with the claims of other colonies some of those claims reached all the way out to the Pacific Koshin now some of the debates that were going on raise the slavery issue to be clear there was not any debate about whether or not to free them but there were debates over whether slave should be considered people for the purposes of calculating population of estate and whether to consider their value as property ready for purposes of taxation of state slavery was becoming a contentious issue given all the recent talk about inalienable rates and things is like all men are created equal but all thirteen states still allowed slavery at this time with the many other issues regarding how to set up a government the idea of tackling such a major political social and economic issue would just have to wait in late seventeen seventeen seventy six congress would not even resolve the disputes over creating the articles it would take congress as I said till near the end of Seventeen nineteen seventy seven before it could finally agree on articles of confederation. I'M NOT GONNA get into all the debate details now because that will probably only be a whole future episode for now suffice it to say that coming to a consensus on any of this stuff was impossible congress would argue about about it then they would put it aside when they needed to deal with more pressing issues like how to keep the army fed as regulars advanced on Philadelphia Congress. I was eager to find allies in Europe to help with the war effort that had actually been one of the main arguments in favor of declaring independence so with the debate over the declaration behind them. European alliances became a front burner issue. The colonies had a wealth of trade goods that British laws had kept kept them from trading with Europe but now that they were independent Americans hope to use this trade to tempt Europeans into trading for goods words that they needed for the war effort John Adams had been working on a draft of just such a treaty since at least March seventeen seventy six on July eighteenth once Congress had completed its debate on independence. Adams decided it was time to submit his model treaty for Consideration Congress reviewed and debated Adams's model treaty over the next two months on September Seventeenth Congress finally approved the model treaty which had hoped to shop around Europe and see if it could make any deals the following week Congress adopted instructions for a delegation of commissioners to go to Europe and use this model treaty as a basis for negotiations it formally appointed Silas Deane Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson as European commissioners as you may recall from episode eighty three Congress had already sent into Europe where he was unofficially officially lobbying France and trying to get military assistance for the cause Franklin who had spent years in London as a colonial agent prepared for his new role as an American diplomat and France Jefferson begged off and return to Virginia where he would work on the new state's legal code so for the Third Delegate Congress turned to another Virginian Arthur Lee who you may recall from episode one away had been living in London and trying to compete with Dean and setting up arms deals for the continental army at the time Arthur Lee had not one but two brothers others serving in the Continental Congress Francis Lightfoot Lee and Richard Henry Lee so I think family connections played a big role in getting the job as you may also recall though Lee and dean already really hated each other Franklin who had also known Lee when the two men lived in London also did not much care for Lee so from the beginning the delegation was definitely not a united one it would also take months ons for Franklin to cross the Atlantic and for lead to learn of his new commission so for almost the rest of seventeen seventy six dean continued operate in France on his own in mid August French newspapers reported that America had declared Independence Dean in France never received record from Congress nor even a copy of the declaration to present to the court of her PSI Congress did try to mail him a copy but it never arrived also by this time. Arthur Lee had come to Paris only to find that Dean had already finalized just about three million levers worth of military contracts. Lee who had hoped to profit from some of these deals began writing letters to his brothers in the continental congress as well as his friend. Samuel Adams Lay told them that France was not covertly selling these supplies in exchange changed for tobacco rather France was giving those military supplies for Free Lee alleged that Dean was attempting to profit from the assistance stints by getting Congress to send payments which he could keep for himself. Lee absolutely knew this was ally he had spoken to French diplomats and other knowledgeable sources who confirmed that these were sales not gifts. Lee just seem to want to destroy deans credibility with Congress and get him sent home around the same time in London. The opposition in Parliament complained publicly that Silas team was openly really meeting with the Foreign Minister version and arranging for French covert arms shipments to America Dean's agent Edward Bancroft reported this public information to Dean who now feared that British spy new everything he was doing of course what Dean did not suspect was that his own agent Bancroft was in fact the double agent who was giving most of this information to the British with the British exposing the arm arm steel publicly with Congress not communicating with Dean and with America not shipping boatloads of tobacco to France to pay for the arms the French government began to doubt whether Dean was even a legitimate agent of the American government it also feared that British knowledge of its attempts attempts had aid were about to lead to war between France and Britain for a few weeks the French government shutdown the operation completely only deans heavy lobbying efforts convinced them to allow it to continue even after continuation though Dean and his French associate she hit Bomar Shea could not seem to get anything done without British officials complaining to the French government to shut down their illegal exports since the British had spies working in their offices they of course knew everything. The Americans attempted to do with shipments were able to to get the French government to shut them down before they could leave port. The French had to comply with these demands or else face the possibility of going to war with Britain written Dean was of course frustrated at his inability to get anything done but also by his inability to get any guidance from Philadelphia Adelphia on how to do his job as a result he was pretty much making up the job as he went along he tried to maintain a private trading business to hide his arms deals but that did not seem to full anyone he tried to intervene when an American privateer landed in Spain with five British ships ships as prizes since no one recognized the United States is a sovereign power they also did not recognize the continental congresses letter of Marque Mark Authorizing the captain to act as a privateer without a valid letter of Marque. He was just a pirate who should be hanged. Although Dean still still had no official government authority he got the French government to intervene and released the captain and his crew in doing so dean had promised the American privateers would avoid using Spanish or French ports in the future. I'm not sure anyone believe that promise but it gave the French government enough cover a to get the privateer released dean also started making other commitments again without any congressional authorization France had been pressuring Lee to commission French officers to go fight in the continental army at this time it was a common practice in Europe for officers officers to serve in other armies when their country was at peace the officers gained valuable experience in command and battle typically an officer would be enticed by being able to command at a higher rank that he had in his own army at this time the continental army would benefit from experienced -perienced officers and engineers who had professional training so although he had zero authority to do so dean granted a commission mission as a Major General in the continental army to the german-born French officer Baron Johann cobb along with a six thousand lever advance and a promise of another six thousand to pay his expenses even more disturbing than Dean's decision to commission generals without the approval of Congress Congress was the fact that the combs main mission seemed to be to convince Congress to replace General Washington with French General Victor Debris ugly as commander in chief of the Continental Army up until that time debris uglies biggest accomplishment was losing the seven years war with Britain. Although in the fall of seventeen seventy six many Americans were thinking about replacing Washington. It's hard to imagine anyone thinking that putting being a French general in charge of the army was an acceptable idea. Dan simply set a letter to Congress saying that the French government thought it was a good idea without giving his own opinion one way or the other but the simple act of pass alone the proposal without common led many in Congress to conclude thirteen seriously thought this was a good idea and that may congress begin to question deans judgment after two calls appointment many other other French officers sought an audience with Dean seeking commissions more Scott turned away but dean did issue a few others including having another Major General's commission to a nineteen year old marquee named Lafayette in total dean issued about sixty commissions including four major generals. Oh without any authorization from Congress. I'm sure Dean would have loved to have heard from Congress about whether or not he should should be doing this but he was really getting no information from Philadelphia he had not received word from Congress about anything. Congress had had attempted to send communications that the British had been pretty effective in intercepting or forcing the destruction of all messages between America and France British spies and France were able to keep close tabs on the activities of Bomar Shea Andy as they purchased and stored military terry supplies bound for Europe by November seventeen seventy six the Rodriguez Horta les- company which you may recall Bowmore Shea had created needed as a front for the covert arms deals was ready to load up three large supply ships in La Habra France for its first big shipment to America okay the mission had the tacit support of the French government recall that back in episode one eight French Minister Virgen had I put Dean and Bomar Shea in contact with each other the French government however could not appear to support the Americans actively. If the British discovered the plan to sell arms to America the French government would have to disavow having any knowledge of it and shut it down. Everyone was trying. I had to keep a low profile so the British spies would not discover the plots fomer. Shay was working in town under an assumed name as he oversaw the loading of supplies departure was delayed however when a French officer Colonel Do cordray whom Dean had promised to make a major general federal delayed coming to town he had received word that the British had taken New York and now feared that the war might be over before he could arrive in America finally do cordray showed up in early. December ready to sail in the meantime foam are Sha- discovered a local production in La Habra of his play the barber of Seville he did not like the production and offered to assist as director of the play soon word got out that Bomar was directing his play at La Habra this blew his cover and British agents quickly realized that he was in town to load up ships for America Arca the British Ambassador Lord Stormont of course rushed to Versailles to demand for Gen. Stop the departure of the ships or he would consider it it an act of war version had no choice but to order the ship seized he delayed getting order to laver for a couple of days hoping hoping the ships might get out of port before his orders could arrive but only one ship had left port by the time his orders made it there a couple all of weeks later though the one ship that had left port return to France a storm had destroyed part of its food also colonel do cordray right thought his quarters were unacceptable and demanded the captain returned to port by then France had been forced to impose an embargo on all of marshes marshes ships so authorities seized the ship as soon as it returned to harbour so no assistance would leave France in seventeen seventy six thanks to boomer shays ego over his play and general do cordray's slowing up the operation with his reluctance to leave for America French aid would have to wait until Franklin and Lee arrived in France in early seventeen seventy seven Franklin Lee and dean would all have to learn to play nice with each other before they could convince the French to provide arms to America. They never would discover that secretary. BANCROFT CROFT was a British spy he would continue his work for London. Throughout the war after the war Bancroft moved to England but continued to correspond respond with Franklin. It was only decades after everyone died that Bancroft role as a spy became public knowledge next week Dean Lance himself in even more hot water after he provides funds to a terrorist who promised to destroy shipyards in Britain on on behalf of the American 'cause hey thanks for joining the American Revolution podcast after show today. I Wanna I wanNA thank our Robert Morris Circle supporter on Patriotic Mark Vanderberg who runs colonial theater on the air. His site is colonial radio DOT com. Tom Colonial Theater produces audio works on a wide variety of topics such as you know comedies dramas sci fi. I'm always drawn to the historical fiction. I've mentioned the Ticonderoga series which is set in the French Indian war when I really enjoyed. The story takes place during the same events that I covered in the first few episodes of this podcast in the past. I've compared colonial theaters work too old time radio shows. I recently gently learned that you can actually listen to some of their work on the radio. Colonial theater appears on Sunday and Thursday nights on K. I. Exi-. Am Radio Radio so you can actually enjoy them on an actual radio of course if you don't have an am radio or are not in Seattle Washington you can listen into the show on K. Isi By going to the station's website K. I. X. Dot Com I think most of us find it more convenient to listen at our pleasure rather than at a set time so there are plenty of other ways to listen to their work. If you have an audible account or sign up for one you can get the episodes from audible you can also get them from apple music or by the CDs on Amazon. If you WANNA check out the full library and download some free resembles go to their website at colonial radio DOT com and I also have a link on my website. Amr of PODCAST DOT com today congress was starting to get serious about dating France. They sent some gentleman collars in the form of a Commission Silas Deane was already representing in Congress but he did not have any official capacity at the quarterback aside from the French government not recognizing nizing him in any official status the British were doing a great job at preventing much of any communications from getting from Congress to France thus leaving dean pretty much on his own the decision to send Franklin not only met a more experienced diplomat who could operate on his own but was a further attempt at more formal recognition of the Americans as diplomats remember although no one believes the cover story. Silas osteen was sent as a private businessman seeking business ventures in France now both he and Franklin and Arthur Lee had official official and publicly announced appointments as American Commissioners in Europe now the French did not recognize Franklin in any capacity either but his notoriety and France opened doors for him as well as the American 'cause. We'll hear more about that future episode. Francis involvement in the war is going to have a major impact down the road so getting from the point we're at now to one where they actually joined the war was a long and difficult difficult process and that leads me to today's book recommendation which describes that process it is called a diplomatic history three of the American Revolution by Jonathan Doll. It gives good coverage to a topic. That's not really been covered very well. By many other books Dole spent much of his career editing Ben Franklin's papers and has developed a real expertise in the topic he's written at least eight eight books dealing with France and or the American navy during the American Revolution now the book diplomatic history is not very long less this than two hundred pages. It was first published in nineteen eighty five and is one of his earlier works without making too much plan his name. I have to admit that Jonathan Dole's writing style is in fact a little dull. The book is more of a just the facts kind of a book. The author's writing style can be a little dry that said it is interesting for its coverage of the topic my online recommendation. This week is a website website for something that I mentioned last week. I mentioned then that I went to a reading for a new show called the crossing and ten crucial days the musical musical some of you wondered where you might learn more about the show well. They have a website where you can learn about the show's cast and producers here's and directors and writers. If you want to read more about the musical that is hopefully going to be in production soon. Go to the crossing musical Google Dot com and of course they'll be opposed for that also on my website Amr F- PODCASTS DOT com well. That's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week for another American Revolution podcast.
ARP193 Silas Deane Hearings
"Hey i'm taking a moment to mention a limited time deal by tyson. France who runs the site liberty and co the wheel. No mass produced t shirts tend to be cheaper than the interesting custom. T. shirts that make you stand out. That's because custom. T shirts are printed in smaller runs dealers. Have to guess ahead of time. What sizes colors and logos will be most popular. If they guess wrong they end up with unsold shirts. Meaning they need to make more on each cert- sale to offset potential losses to get around this problem. Liberty and co is holding a pre order sale for eight new t shirt designs a presale. Let's tyson know exactly what shirts people want ahead of his order. It means less waste for him and more savings for you. The preorder sale includes eight brand new liberty and co exclusive designs. there's a stamp tax protests. Shirt a uniter die shirt one for the signers when for we the people a sense of liberty flag shirt and appeal to heaven flag shirt. The famous take notice recruiting poster and one for john hancock shipping. These are high quality shirts that are both designed and printed in the us. there's also free shipping and ten percent of all prophets support. The museum of the american revolution. These t shirts for sale items so you cannot use a coupon code but if you buy anything else while you're there as well use the code amr have that's a. m. r. e. v. to save twenty percent the more she by the less you pay per shirt so order all eight and save big. Ilie catch is that you have to order the shirts this month. After tyson places print order you'll be stuck paying full retail price. So order shirts today already placed my order. Go to liberty and dot co for more details. Hello and thank you for joining the american revolution today. Episode one ninety three the dean hearings few weeks ago. I mentioned that silas deane returned to america with the french fleet that arrived in july seventeen. Seventy eight congress had recalled him sending a letter in december. Seventeen seventy seven to report on the affairs in europe. Dean had received this letter in march and then took a few weeks to wrap up his affairs and plan his return to philadelphia. By the time he returned dean had spent about two years in france. Congress had requested that he go there to serve as an advocate before the french court. In march seventeen seventy six. The inexperienced merchant from connecticut took up the task without knowing a word of french or even having any personal contacts in france despite these limitations teen had managed to make personal contact with key leaders at versailles and to begin a partnership with pierre bomar shea to begin sending arms and supplies back to america. He accomplished all this despite being on his own. In france for nearly a year. By the end of seventeen seventy six congress appointed benjamin franklin and arthur lee to work with dean in france together. The commissioners had not only sent shiploads of arms and supplies dozens of french officers but also managed to finalise tu treaties with france and bring their new ally into the war with britain. Deans mission had been a success and he returned. Home should have been in tribe that however was not the case. Almost since team's arrival in europe arthur lee waged a campaign to attack ins character and behavior in hopes of having dean recalled. Arthur lee had been living in london. When the war began he was a member of the powerful lee family of virginia and had two brothers. Sitting in the continental congress is legal. Practice in london had helped him to establish himself as a colonial agent before the war. Lee attempted to work with pierre. Bomar shea to get french military supplies to america. Once the war began but go marseille ended up for me a partnership with silas deane to further. Oh same ends. That seems to have been the origin of lease hostility toward dean. Lee began a covert letter writing campaign to powerful people in america including his two brothers in the continental congress asserting that team was defrauding congress by demanding payment for aid that the government of france intended to begin free of charge. This however was not the case. France did provide several generous loans to get the project started. However french officials expected the assistant program to become self-sustaining as america paid back those loans with the delivery of tobacco. All of these deals were secret. Of course. Congress only got the information about them from dean lee and franklin since the commissioners were sending back reports. Congress wasn't sure who to believe and congress always desperate for cash was receptive to accusations that one of its agents was unjustly enriching himself and these secret agreements. These other problem was that he lacked political. Allies in congress team had actually been a member of the continental congress before his appointment at the time of his appointment. The members of the secret committee who entrusted him with the mission to france were benjamin franklin john dickinson benjamin harrison thomas johnson. John jay and robert morris franklin of course left congress to serve alongside dean in france franklin still supported dean but was no longer in congress to be his advocate. There john dickinson famously. Left congress shortly after passage of the declaration of independence. He took a commission in the army but his opposition to independence and congress and his express doubts about the war. Effort had damaged his reputation by seventeen. Seventy eight. He was living as a private citizen in delaware. Benjamin harrison had left congress. Shortly after passage of the proposed articles of confederation harrison had opposed equal representation which had left a large state like virginia greatly under represented it also opposed general washington over the appointment of lafayette to a command position. He had a gendered the anger of many radicals by supporting the rights of quakers to avoid compulsory military service and as a result of all this resign his seat and return to virginia. Thomas johnson had left congress and was by this time governor of maryland john. Jay had left to become chief justice of the new york supreme court. The only member of that secret committee that was still in congress that had supported in at the beginning. Was robert morris. Even morris had been on a leave of absence at the time congress recalled dean however he had returned by may seventeen seventy eight. This was no ally of dean. Morris had secured the appointment of his half brother. Thomas morris as an american agent in france thomas was supposed to deal with price ships that were captured and other financial matters. Unfortunately thomas did not share his brother's business acumen or attention to duty thomas. Morris spent most of his time in france drinking and partying. Dean had reported this behavior to congress. Well congress was trying to sort out this mess. Thomas morris fell ill and died in january. Seventeen seventy eight at the age of twenty six robert morris took great offense in part not believing the accusations that dean levied against his brother and also that dean had made the issue public to congress. Rather than writing to morris privately. The result was that morris was hostile to dean and franklin at the time. Arthur lee had levy charges against both dean and franklin but franklin was seen as a success in france and still had many supporters in congress because of this dean rather than franklin became the primary focus of concern so after two years abroad without any support among the delegates in philadelphia congress. Recall dean to answer questions about the accusations against him. In their letter to dean congress did not mention the charges of financial mismanagement and fraud instead dean simply received a letter saying he was being recalled for consultation about the situation in europe. Team was savvy enough to realize that this was more than just factfinding. The congress would not be recalling him unless they had reason to question his performance however he had no idea what the details of those questions would be so before he left. France stink consulted with franklin with more shea and with their gen about his recall. And let everyone know that he was returning to philadelphia. Franklin's letter to congress gives the best description of what team did or didn't know about this situation. Franklin gave dean this letter dated march thirty first seventeen. Seventy eight to pass along to president of congress. Letter says in part my colleague. Mr dean is being recalled by congress and no- reasons given that yet appeared here it is apprehended to be the effect of some misrepresentations from an enemy or two in paris. At nana's i have no doubt that he will be able clearly to justify himself but having lived intimately with him for more than fifteen months the greatest part of the time in the same house at a constant witness of his public conduct. I cannot avoid giving this testimony though asked that i esteem him as a faithful active and able minister to my knowledge has done in various ways. Great and important services to his country whose interests i wish may always by everyone in her employ is much and as efficiently promoted also after discussing the matter with dean french. Agent pierre bomar. Shay wrote a blistering confidential memo for the french foreign ministry critical of lee's attacks on dean quote by character and by ambition. Mr arthur lee. Was i jealous of mr dean. He finished by becoming his enemy which always happens to small mines or occupied in supplanting their rivals then in surpassing them in merit the connections of mr lee in england and two brothers whom he has in congress have made him recently. An important and dangerous man is plan has always been to prefer between france and england the power. Which would most surely bring him to fortune. England has some advantages for him. He has often explained himself on the subject in his libertine suppers. A to succeed. It was necessary to get rid of a colleague so formidable by his patriotism as mr dean this he has accomplished by causing him to be suspected. In several points of view by congress boomer shays memo went on to outline lease attacks on. Dean's appointment of french. Authorities and lease accusation that the covert military aid was a gift from france. Not a sale former shake concludes his report by noting quote. Today mr dean loaded with grief finds himself suddenly an harshly recalled. He is ordered to go to give an account of his conduct and to justify himself from many faults which they do not designate also expressing support for dean foreign minister version sent a letter to dean in late march attesting to francis preparation of his work as a diplomat. In part it read quote the king desirous of giving you a personal testimony of his satisfaction with your conduct as charged me to inform this year. The president of congress of it this is the object of the letters which messrs gerard will deliver you for mr hancock. He will also deliver you a box with a portrait of the king. The box which was a gift to dean included a portrait of the king that was made of gold and encrusted with diamonds. A show of gratitude and support for service in france further. The king of france directed that dean be a guest aboard the french fleet. That would sail to america along with the new french minister to america. Conrad alexandra girard in the view of everyone in the french government of delegate franklin and of dean personally he should have been returning to america in success he had secured the french alliance sent many successful officers and had been the source of much -tary aid over the previous years upon his arrival in philadelphia. In july seventeen seventy eight. Dean met with president. Henri lawrence warrants was cordial and congratulated dean on his many successes. A dean made clear. He was eager to make his reports to congress and returned to france and continue his diplomatic work. Congress however was in no hurry. Dean sat in philadelphia for over a month waiting for an audience with congress. If i received orders to appear several times in mid august then again nothing finally on september eighth dean wrote that he was growing impatient and then if congress did not want to hear from him further he would like to return to france ten days later. A congressional committee reported that arthur. Lee and ralph izard had accused of financial mismanagement and misappropriation of public money. It began calling witnesses to testify to these charges but it did not call dean shortly after that connecticut delegate titus hosmer who had been in congress for only a few months and who was returning home inform dean that he overheard other delegates who said they sought to destroy dean since they had no evidence they did not want to bring specific charges against him instead they would simply drag out the matter and allow the cloud of accusation to hang over. Dean's head for as long as possible again. Dean wrote to congress asking for the charges against him and to see the letters of his accusers so that he could respond. He said that after spending more than three months in philadelphia needed to get back to france to manage his financial affairs there. They never did get to see the letters accusing him anything but he did learn about some of the accusations. Secondhand lee had accused dean of giving offense to everyone he worked with in france. Well there's no doubt that dean offended li but few others seem to be offended. Dean argued that his success spoke for itself. D noted that in seventeen seventy seven. He had shipped thirty thousand small arms a similar number of uniforms. Over two hundred and fifty pieces of brass artillery and numerous other supplies that were critical to the cause and which had been vital to opposing the burgoyne campaign. There were also on his letters of support from franklin and various french officials which team had delivered to congress. Lee had also made some minor accusations. Like that dean had opened and read all of these correspondents which teams simply denied. Lee accused of leaving him. Out of negotiations. To which dean responded. That lee was to quarrels and that they did not always trust him with confidential matters. Under negotiation the more significant charge was that congress had spent millions. But that almost everything said to america still had to be paid for the obvious. Implication was that dean had used that money for other purposes and that congress would still have to repay all of those loans. Dane could deny those charges. Generally but ona's financial records were still in france. He had no idea that he would be called to answer these specific charges and had left the financial records with his associates. Who were still trying to continue these business dealings with france. Instead dean had to cool his heels in philadelphia living at his own expense waiting for congress to continue its investigation. Meanwhile back in france. Arthur lee having successfully removed dean from europe turned his attention toward franklin. Lee continued to write to congress about how dean was guilty of all sorts of financial crimes. Penny a grown rich on embezzling government money and that his calls for a hearing were all just a bluff he also wrote that franklin was similarly guilty of wasting government funds and supporting his lavish lifestyle. Congress was still receptive to lease accusations at one point. They came within one vote of voting to recall franklin from france as well as i said lee wanted to remove both of his fellow commissioners so that he could take full control of the american delegation in france. One of dean's greatest defenders was french. Minister gerard gerard was concerned about openly supporting one political faction against another in america after all his job was to maintain good relations between france and america regardless of who was in charge philadelphia but gerard did speak with delegates when he could defending both the motivations and actions of franklin and deane in a letter to version gerard wrote quote. The stories of arthur lee are but an absurd tissue of falsehoods and sarcasm can only compromise those who have the misfortune of being obliged to have anything to do with him. Despite all this support the dean hearings dragged on by december. Dean had grown increasingly frustrated with congress. He had left europe in a hurry. Expecting to be gone only a few months he had left many matters. Incomplete and france. It even left his thirteen year old son there in the care of others after spending nine months waiting for congress to decide anything about his case he wrote a public letter outlining his situation. Attacking arthur lee and lee's political allies. And which was generally highly critical of congress this public revelation of the infighting between the american commissioners and the internal disputes within congress set off a political firestorm virginia delegate francis lightfoot lee responded in the press to defend his brother arthur lee this led to follow up articles by dean then a couple of weeks later thomas paine entered the fray pain issued a series of articles just savaging. Dean is first article primarily criticized for making the whole manor public and revealing divisions among the continental leadership. That pain believed damage the war effort and the patriot cause generally over the next few weeks and months pain published articles attacking dean for his failure to bring his financial records with him. And for what pain seemed to believe. Were unsubstantiated attacks on arthur and william lee pain strongly implied that dean was corrupt or at least hopelessly naive in the way he managed affairs in europe paint attacks largely reflected the views of a faction possibly a majority of congress distrusted dean and thought that his publicizing of this dispute only made things worse over the winter as articles raged back and forth dean remained in philadelphia without congress making any effort to continue its investigation or hold hearings in april and then again in may of seventeen seventy nine. Within a year after congress. I recalled him dean wrote to congress to say that he planned to depart the city erode to the president of congress that quote. It was the design of those who wish to sacrifice me to family interests to wear me out by delays without any direct charges to ruin me in the opinion of my countrymen by insincere hints and innuendos upon receiving the letter. President lawrence is comment. Was only that quote. If dean goes in defiance of congress it will be a confession. Finally in august of seventeen seventy nine congress discharge teen from further attendants and requested that all commissioners submit their accounts and vouchers for final settlement. Congress reached absolutely no ruling on the charges against gene or anything else. It was simply announcing that the investigation had ended. Congress finally offered to pay for his costs for the more than year that dean had remained in philadelphia but the amount they offered was so small and to be paid in nearly worthless continental paper dollars. That a disgusted dean refused to accept the payment entirely. Perhaps one small victory for dean was at robert. Morris once again supported him morris upon receiving the full information about his brother. Thomas is failures. In europe accepted. That dean had only been try to resolve a problem. Not attack him. Politically morris commented that dean had rendered essential services for his country and that he had been quote. Ill used by his enemies in a letter. After everything had ended morris wrote quote. I consider dean to be a martyr in the cause of america and that the attacks on him were quote. Shameful dean finally did return to france in seventeen eighty where franklin greeted him as a friend dean though as a private citizen having made so many enemies in congress he would not receive another appointment to anything. French officials also received him warmly in appreciation of his past service at that point was also reunited with his son jesse by this time. A young man of sixteen teams also heartened to learn that just weeks before his arrival in france that arthur lee had departed for america to be called to account his own activities while abroad. Even with the matter behind in though dean would carry a resentment toward congress for the rest of his life is experience also left him with serious doubts that the american cause would succeed when led by conspiring politicians with whom he had interacted during his time in philadelphia next week. The french and british fleets out their first major encounters at the battle of shop. Hi thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show my thanks as always to trae. Nance george davis lewis white and robert hunter for support of this podcast at the alexander. Hamilton club level on patriot on also. Thanks to kurt of art author of the book. I do no harm for his support. At the robert morris circle on patriot. Also wanna give thanks to jason petri for his longtime continuing support on patron and also for the one time gift from farren sheer the then mo everyone who can help chip in even a few dollars helps keep this podcast freely available for those who cannot because of the growing popularity of this podcast. I've actually been getting some offers to dump watts of annoying commercials into the show to help. Monetize it. I do occasionally run an ad for products that i really like such as the one. I'm running currently for liberty and co which i record myself but i've done my best to resist. Those repetitive crass commercial jingles. That i find so annoying another podcasts. I've been able to do that so far because of generous support from listeners who have stepped up and believe in the value of this podcast if donations continue to grow. I can hopefully continue to avoid stuffing. This podcast with marshall's also many other podcasts. Put some of their episodes behind donor only pay walls to encourage more donations. That's also something i've avoided. I really wanna keep everything available to everyone regardless of your ability to pay so this really makes your donations so much more meaningful. So please if you can't afford to give even a small monthly amount or a one time gift it really helps me to stay on that path. Another milestone this week the podcast cross two million downloads. It took nearly three years to reach the first million and just over ten months to reach these second million. So please tell your friends and share this podcast. So he can cross that three million mark before the end of this year. Thanks to everyone who has lessened especially those who have been kind enough to leave a five star review on apple podcasts or anywhere else. Podcasts are reviewed. This week i covered these silas deane hearings normally. I like to cover events for a particular time which usually only spends a few days or weeks. The dane hearings dragged on for well over a year. So i had to go well beyond the time. Line that this podcast is currently on. But i thought it was important to cover the events as they dragged out to this day. Many people think silas deane's reputation still has kind of tanked to it. Thanks mostly to these inconclusive investigations. My personal view which probably came out in the main show is that silas deane was a patriot. Who provided an invaluable service and got screwed by congress. The man who screwed him primarily was arthur lee supported by his brothers richard. Henry lee and francis lightfoot lee as well as their allies in congress my view of thomas paine served as the lease attack dog in the press also diminished in my mind as a result of his involvement. In this event pains. Radical views can be dangerous in any revolution it can lead to the revolution turning on its own for no good reason. It's something that paint himself would experience in very real terms later in his life. During the french revolution silas deane remained in europe for the rest of his life. He moved to belgium because he could not afford to stay in paris after the british intercepted and published some letters. Home where he expressed pessimism about the american cause later in the war is reputation in america tanked even further but given the way he was treated. I think his negative us about congress were understandable after the war dean move to london after revelations that he had met with his fellow. Connecticut ex pat general benedict. Arnold is reputation in america sankt to even new lows finally in seventeen eighty-nine nine set out to return to america to seek vindication he died aboard ship only hours after it left. Port many suspect that he was poisoned but nothing was ever proven within fifty years after his death. Dean's airs finally settled with congress for just a portion of what they owed him for his service as diplomat. It was a sad end for a man who was critical to the forming of the french. Alliance if you want to read more about silas. Deane my book recommendation. This week is silas. Deane revolutionary war diplomat and politician by milton. C van black. The book shares my view. That dean is a hero of the revolution and unjustly wind. It gives a good account of his life and the events that lead up to his eventual fall from grace. This book was not exactly a bestseller. It went straight to paperback. It's also less than two hundred pages not counting notes and index. But i think it's an interesting look at dean's life. It may be hard to find this point but it is worth reading. And there's a kindle version if you cannot find it in paper the author. Mr van black was a longtime high school history teacher in dean's home state of connecticut. He published his book in two thousand thirteen after he retired. Sadly mr van vast away three years later in twenty sixteen. There's also a number of other good books related to dean that are in the public domain and freely available on archive dot org. If you go to my blog entry for this episode you can find list of them. The one i'm recommending this week. Oh actually two is the diplomatic correspondence of the american revolution. Volume. one silas. Deane's correspondence edited by jared sparks and published in eighteen. Twenty nine as you might guess from the title. The book contains deans actual letters. The other book. I want to mention is volume two of the same series that one contains the diplomatic correspondence of arthur late which gives the other point of view. In the controversies between these two men. I've included links to both volumes in my recommendation links. I also wanted to mention the editor of both of these volumes. Jared sparks was president of harvard university in the early nineteenth century. If you're not familiar with him sparks was probably best known for his twelve volume work on the writings of george washington. He oversaw the collection and production of many other important works related to figures from the american revolution and much of his work forms. The foundation of all subsequent research on the topic. Of course as always you can search for my online recommedations on archive dot org or just. Use the direct links on my website at amriyev. Podcast dot com. Well that's offer this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
SNEAK PREVIEW: Hero of Two Worlds Chapter Four
"Hello and welcome to this sneak preview of hero of two worlds the marquis de lafayette in the revolution. By me mike dunkin. I hope you have all priori the book already. And if you have thank you very much. This is a sneak preview of what's to come if you have not pre order the book. This is a sneak preview of what's to come and hopefully it will induce you to preorder the book. Because you like it so much. I did pick. What i think is a pretty good chapter We're not just going to do chapter one here. We're actually going to do chapter four. So were sixty odd pages in the book by now but chapter. Four is lafayette landing in america for the first time his first impressions of america. America's first impressions of him We get him landing. In south carolina then going up to philadelphia getting his commission in the continental army confirmed and meeting george washington and it takes us through the battle of brandy wine. All of this is a very nice slice of the early part of the book. Now since i'm not giving you chapter wanner chapter two or chapter three. There is just a little bit. You need to know before you can pick it up at chapter four but chapter one talks about how lafayette's parents both died. When he was young leaving him a very rich orphan then chapter two talks. About how the fact that he was a very rich orphan made him a very eligible bachelor and a marriage was arranged for him he wound up marrying adriana who was a part of the great noailles clan one of the most important noble families in france but lafayette quickly discovered. He did not really fit in with high society and he was feeling restless and stifled and so chapter. Three then talks about how he winds up running away from home to join the continental army. So i'm just gonna skip over all the details of that because look that's all in the book if you want to get all the details preorder the book containing stuff you know. He dances with marie-antoinette and steps on her toes and everybody laughs at him and he can't handle his liquor. You know the good stuff now as you pick up chapter four. I think the only person i don't introduced in chapter for who you do need to know is baron johann to cowb- who was the facilitator of lafayette's entry into the continental army and who is on the ship that lafayette sales to america in. Now dekalb working for this guy named charles francois abruptly who thought he was concocting a plot to replace george washington as commander in chief of the continental army. That's why the was joining the continental army and it's how lafayette got roped into it. Even though lafayette didn't actually know about the plan to make voguly commander in chief of the continental army historians call this the broccoli intrigue and i am giving away too much already if you wanna know more. You gotta preorder the book. But anyway picking up chapter for just after they have boarded this ship. Bava babacar and sailed away from france. Lafayette has left quite a bit of chaos in his wake. He did run away from home. He didn't tell anybody he was doing this adriana crying his father-in-law is furious. The king is possibly ordering trista cash shade to toss him in the best deal. But in april of seventeen seventy seven. They made it. They got away and lafayette is on the atlantic ocean. And so here now is chapter. Four chapter four brilliant madness. Lafayette had never sailed in ship on open waters. It turned out to be his worst nightmare. He was trapped in confined quarters with no possibility of escape powerless over a vast ocean that could swallow him whole whenever it wished but beyond the existential dread he also suffered from terrible seasickness during his first week on la victoire. Lafayette departed his bunk. Only long enough to vomit even after physically adjusting to life on board the ship. Lafayette still suffered mentally. He discovered more than anything else. Life at sea was tedious and boring to pass the time he wrote to audrey in one day follows another here and what is worse they are all alike always the sea always the water and again the next day the same things a long stretch of calm winds only prolonged lafayette's misery. Since my last letter he wrote. I have been in that most tedious of regions. The c is so dismal. And i believe we sat in each other. She and i to pass the monotonous weeks of close confinement. Lafayette spent his time reading military manuals and books in english. His only military experience was two summers of maneuvers and mets. He knew he needed to learn more to succeed in america but his study of english was even more important to his success. The vast majority of french officers presenting themselves to congress spoke. Only french as french was the language of civilized people. They assume this would not be an issue. Much to the consternation of the english speaking americans. Lafayette on the other hand resolved to learn the language of the people. One hope to serve. If his wealth and title opened the door to america lafayette's ernest commitment to speaking english made him truly welcome also became acquainted with his fellow passengers. Especially vicomte de la. The one who convinced him. The people of france were behind him. After fifteen years in the french army more wa rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel but then like lafayette found himself abruptly reformed out of the service by songs german. His principal object in joining the expedition was clearing a path back to the french army. By performing ballard service in america more wa shared none of lafayette boundless enthusiasm for the americans or the cause of liberty which the cynical veteran thought comically misguided more wa took a shine to lafayette though and so from a place of benevolent interest. Brace the boy for disappointment one day at sea. Lafayette said to more wa. Don't you believe that the people are united by the love of virtue and liberty. More wa replied. The americans were not some novel species they were simply transplanted europeans who brought to a savage land views and prejudices of their respective homelands. He proceeded to give lafayette a brief moral history of european colonization fanaticism the insatiable desire to get rich and misery. Those are unfortunately the three sources from which flow that nearly uninterrupted stream of immigrants who sword in hand go to cut down under an alien sky forests more ancient than the world watering a still virgin land with the blood of its savage inhabitants and fertilizing with thousands of scattered cadavers the fields they conquered crime this more informed. Lafayette was the reality of quote unquote new world toward which they sailed having departed europe. In april lubbock akhtar was still at sea. In june uncooperative. Winds extended the long voyage as did the decision to avoid caribbean ports. Where arrest warrants might be waiting and head straight for charleston south carolina eventually the passenger saw birds the unmistakable harbinger of land as they approach civilization their first encounter with another ship reminded them of their perilous situation. They were a pack of foreign soldiers of fortune attempting to insert themselves in the middle of a civil war as the unidentified ship approach. The air was fraught with tension. What if it was british but ship turned out to be american but though they pose no threat they bore a serious warning to royal navy frigates blockaded charleston harbor a direct approach on the city was impossible saliva ktar found in anchorage fifty miles north off the coast of north island. Lafayette dekalb and a few others wrote ashore on june thirteenth. Seventeen seventy seven. They set foot on dry land. After fifty four days at sea lafayette's arrival in this land of freedom and liberty could not have been richer with ironic hypocrisy. The first people he encountered were a small group of enslaved africans crewing an oyster boat in his youth haste. An idealistic fantasizing. Lafayette did not yet register the insurmountable contradiction of american liberty american slavery as a nineteen year. Old french aristocrat with a head full of adventurous excitement. Lafayette recognize these african oystermen as merely servants of master. Property of an owner and servants were common everywhere. Lafayette would not remain in this blinkered. Stay forever but for now. He remained blind to what he saw. The oystermen agreed to take the frenchman to their master. Their owner major is accuser. An officer in the south carolina militia an operator of a lucrative rights plantation. They did not arrive. Major huber's house until midnight and after a few ten minutes of interrogation to discern whether the strangers were dangerous major. Cougar invited them into eat drink and sleep. Lafayette spent his first night in america on a slave plantation. The next morning huber arranged for local pilot to navigate la victoire to a safe harbor but suggested lafayette and his companions walk overland to charleston warned that escaped slaves lived in secret settlements and survived by stealing from their former masters. The party of french officers loaded themselves with guns and ammunition rather than a change of clothes. Then they departed charleston after three days and two nights trumping south west through blazing coastal sands. They finally made it back. To civilization one of lafayette's companion said. They arrived looking very much like beggars and brigands. They were greeted us. Such dekalb attempted to explain. They were french officers. Come to serve in the continental army. The residents of charleston scoffed. The city was full of french. Mercenary spinning such tales claiming impeccable credentials and legendary feats of strength almost all of them liars and charlatans most of these adventurers were inferior officers who migrated up from colonial garrisons and martinique. Guadeloupe or san domingo. While it was true they carried letters of recommendation from their superiors though superiors happily sung the praises of the most disreputable drunken and unreliable men in their units eager as they were to be rid of them. The chefs french officers laughed when lafayette claimed he was a marquee. They heard that story a thousand times before. The jeers ceased the next morning. A sharp wind blew the two royal navy. Frigates out to sea leaving an opening through which la victoire enter charleston harbor. It turned out the bedraggled strangers told the truth one of lafayette's companion said. The arrival of the ship caused a complete reversal of opinion about us. We now receive the warmest. Welcome possible and the french officers who had been the first to jeer at us came in crowds to fawn upon the marquis de lafayette and tried to join his party. Lafayette's group spent the next eight days in charleston. Dining and drinking with the best of local society he toured the famous fortification that defended the city so admirably during a failed british siege the previous summer one of the rare military triumphs in an otherwise dismal year of retreat and defeat after this inspection lafayette grandly pledged enough cash to outfit one hundred men. A display of spontaneous generosity reported in newspapers as far away as boston who noted with interest the arrival of this rich and generous french marquee. Lafayette and cow. Believe they were going to sell both the cargo and la victoire to earn the money they needed to live in america but young lafayette signed his purchase agreement without reading or understanding. The fine print. He did not know the proceeds from the sale of la victoria. Cargo were earmarked to repay the debt. He contracted to buy the ship in the first place nor did he know la victoire was required to load herself with american cargo and returned to bordeaux lafayette was forced to take out a high interest loan to pay his expenses cosigned by takao since lafayette was still a minor. The use the money from this loan to outfit themselves with supplies clothes horses and carriages for the nearly seven hundred mile trip to philadelphia. Lafayette envisioned. A comfortable ride in a fine carriage through an american arcadia the soon prove to be a pipe dream a few days after depositing his passengers the captain of lava tour commenced the return voyage to france. But as the ship sailed out of charleston harbor she struck a sandbar and sank having performed her one historical service of delivering the marquee lafayette safely to america. La victoire was swallowed by sea and never seen again to reach philadelphia. The former passengers of law victoire split into three groups. Lafayette and dekalb let one group vicomte mewa let another while. Third elected to make the trip by sea though. The nautical approach was more dangerous. It was certainly more comfortable as it turned out the carriages lafayette purchase were unsuited for cross country. Travel four days into the trip. The axles broke lafayette and his companions abandoned. The carriages along with the supplies they hauled most of which were subsequently stolen but the horses they now road were also unsuited for such a long trip one by one they pulled up lame or collapsed from exhaustion. The party was forced to detour and purchase new ones. Lafayette kept up a continuous letter writing regimen during the trip asking every coastal town weather ships were leaving for france. Still guided by irrepressible enthusiasm. Lafayette remained upbeat and bore his trials with good humor. You know that. I departed most handsomely. In a carriage he wrote adrian. We are all now on horseback. After having broken the carriages. I expect to right you in a few days that we have arrived on foot. Lafayette described america as a glorious landfall of magnificent people wherever lafayette looked he saw egalitarian. Republicans of simple homespun virtue. The americans he said were defined by a simplicity of manners. A desire to please a love of country and liberty and an easy equality prevails everywhere here in one letter. Lafayette marveled the richest man and the poorest star on the same level because every individual has an adequate amount of property in the original paper manuscript of this letter. Someone later crossed out young lafayette's observation americans were equal because everyone owned a considerable number of negroes. This embarrassing remark did not fit with the beliefs of an older and wiser lafayette. So someone crossed out the line. When the family posthumously published his correspondence his companions were less thrilled by what they found in. America were lafayette saw simple. Goodness they saw only backward. Simpson's they felt acutely self conscious of the deep anti-french anti-catholic sentiment of these anglo settlers and detected latent hostility in people they encountered. Pierre do russo defy all a member of lafayette's party who later wrote a journal of his experiences observed. One thing is certain we have not been flattered with attentions. I do not know whether the future will be better for us but things are not at all as they were described to us in france but then again none of them were a young rich marquee. Speaking delightfully broken english with breakfast delight. Neither lafayette in his enchantment nor his companions. In their misanthrope he told untruths their observations and experiences reflected their own perceptions. Beliefs and projections was painfully clear. To all of them. The war was going badly restored. File said the people are not united in a common cause. And i do not think they will ever do anything. Spectacular as they trudged wearily toward philadelphia. They learned the british captured fort. Ticonderoga sentinel of the northern border with canada. If they did not hurry the war might be over before. They even had a chance to fight on july twenty. Seventh 1777 thi- it's party arrived in philadelphia thirty two days after leaving charleston forty days after landing in america ninety four after departing europe and more than one hundred and fifty days since lafayette bid adieu to his family and left paris for london. They said goodbye under the assumption. He would return within a matter of weeks now. Many months later the time had finally come to justify the consternation pain disappointment anger and doubt he caused in the meantime but lafayette's reception in philadelphia became an even greater farce than his reception in charleston. The frenchman arrived on a sunday. So the second continental congress was not in session. They first approached the residence of mr john. Hancock boston merchant ardent patriot and current president of the congress but rather than greeting the officers with open arms and praises to god for the arrival of saviors from france. Handcock inform them brusquely. Foreign officers were not his responsibility. Hancock told them to go. See robert morris the philadelphia financier banker and speculator who sat on the foreign affairs committee under whose direction silas deane allegedly operated. Not suspecting anything was wrong. The french officers walked over to morris. House morris was no more accommodating than hancock. He told them to return the next day to the pennsylvania state house where their claims would be heard and addressed put off and put out but not yet realizing the scope of congressional hostility. Lafayette the cow and their companions found lodgings for the night the next morning lafayette and thirteen other officers arrived at the state house. Clutching commissions from dean congress's stamp of approval and directions to the nearest battlefield. But no one met them so they waited and waited. Eventually morris arrived alongside james level. A stern new england schoolmaster fluent in french. Hardly even pausing to stop morris indicated. The frenchmen were levels responsibility thoroughly confused. They introduce themselves but lovell cut them off and launched into an irritated diatribe denouncing silas deane for overstepping his authority level said congress and dean to get four engineers and instead he sent every french scoundrel with delusions of grandeur. He could find each more pompous useless offensive than the last luckily level went on. Benjamin franklin secured the needed engineers. Who arrived back in april as no further foreign officers were needed at this time. Level said goodbye and walked away. One of lafayette's shock companions later said level left us after calling adventurers but in quintessentially french fashion. The officer noted level did so in very good french. There was nothing they could do but return to their temporary lodgings and baffled confusions only later they discover how much they did not know i. Dean really had exceeded the bounds of his authority when signing their commissions then they learned more about the various french officers who preceded them. These loan mercenaries wore out their welcome demanding rank and pay well above their station and treating the colonials like inferior dollars. George washington was among those sick to death of the influx of french officers. I have often mentioned to you. The distress i am in washington wrote john. Hancock laid under by the application of french officers for commissions in our service this evil if i may call it so his growing one. They are coming in swarms from old france and the caribbean in another letter. Hand cocky pleaded you cannot conceive what a weight these kind of people are upon the service and upon me in particular few of them have any knowledge of the branches which they profess to understand and those that have are entirely useless as officers from their ignorance of the english language he further begged major general. Horatio gates. I shall be much obliged for you to stop the shoals of frenchman who are coming in the summer of seventeen seventy seven. He drafted his latest scathing opinion of french officers. I have found by experience that however modest. They may seem to be at first by proposing to serve as volunteers. They very soon extend their view and become importunate for offices. They have no right to look for. He wrote this last remark just days before the marquee. Lafayette arrived in philadelphia. As a result of all this congress created a new committee to handle applications from foreign officers. They named james lovell chair of the committee because he was hostile to silas deane specifically and the french generally it seems level believed. His job was to use his very good french to tell arrogant european imposters to get lost just as he had done with the latest batch who came up from charleston returning home after curtly dismissing the frenchman level road. A fellow delegate. About dean saying ought not this week or roguish man be recalled. It took a full day for congress to finally read the letters from dean accompanying the commissions as well as letters from charleston notable confirming the story that the lanky and sandy haired teenager was in fact a real marquee. He was a cy on one of the best families. In france he was an intimate of the queen. His uncle was the french ambassador to the court of saint james and best of all. He was rich. The boy could be a major asset in the dream of securing the support. Not just a penniless. French rogues but the full might of the kingdom of france level return to lafayette's lodgings accompanied by another french speaking american named william duer clearly. There had been some misunderstanding. Lafayette confirmed everything said about him. As previous french officers demanded experiment. Pay they double and triple check the about lafayette serving without a salary. Lafayette reiterated his pledge to pay his own way after more back and forth. Lafayette promised to serve under three simple conditions. He would serve without pay. He would serve as a volunteer but he wanted to serve directly under george washington if congress met those three conditions he would happily lend his name rank and fortune to the american cause when congress debated the matter they concluded there was nothing to lose and everything to gain lafayette's commission cost them nothing and he might serve as a conduit to the inner circle of french power. They approved his commission on july thirty. First seventeen seventy seven. Congress proclaimed the marquee lafayette a major general in the continental army. The proclamation made no mention of his military experience but instead went out of its way to note the rank was bestowed inconsideration. Zeal a lustrous family and connections in making this appointment. Congress believe they bestowed upon lafayette an honorary rank for political reasons. henry lauren. A recently elected congressman from south carolina. Wrote they expected lafayette to have a short campaign and then probably returned to france and secure to us the powerful interest of his high and extensive connections but lafayette walked away under the impression he was now a real general george washington already sick to death of french officers and their grandiose demands was left to sort out the confusion the day. Lafayette received his commission. Congress held a dinner for washington at city tavern having just march down with his army from new jersey washington was in philadelphia to confer with his civilian masters before he arrived. Washington was briefed on the appointment of the curious. Young french marquee. No doubt chagrined. Washington provisionally accepted the story. This frenchman was different at the dinner. The two sat at opposite ends of the table but afterward washington took lafayette aside spoke to him very kindly and then told him he should be pleased if he would make the quarters of the commander-in-chief his home and consider himself at all times. One of the family washington always referred to his circle of aides and fellow officers as his family. Lafayette took it to mean he was being invited into washington's personal household. He was thrilled by the unexpected gesture. For lafayette this was a seminal moment of his life it was the beginning of a relationship that would define long after washington was dead. Much has been made of the importance of the relationship especially given the emotional subtext of the childless washington and the fatherless lafayette each filling a hole in the heart for lafayette. There was a great deal of truth. This his i would be surrogate. The diane did not exactly pan out. Lafayette still needed. A father but washington's emotional needs are harder to gauge. He was surrounded by many young men in need of a father figure and he showed no great urge to be their adoptive father. in fact washington's isolating reserve and lack of personal affection were legendary. Lafayette broke through washington reserve. In a way those who knew the general best considered unique and unprecedented. We know however that on the night of july thirty. First 1777 george washington had no idea how much he would come to love this young french nobleman. Lafayette on the other hand already anticipated a great friendship washington became lafayette's idle mentor and role model. A model promising to balance many of his own impetuous behaviors. Lafayette was naturally and excitable. He was passionate bouncy eager intimate and friendly these qualities endeared lafayette to everyone. He met in america. They were also traits. No one used to describe. George washington and this is exactly what lafayette was looking for. He was acutely aware of his own social defects. His clumsy lack of grace and happy effervescence lead people to dismiss him and not take him seriously. Lafayette felt indulged and tolerated when he wanted admiration and respect when he looked at washington. Lafayette saw man projecting authority through calm stoic dignity in lafayette's nature to be calm stoic or dignified but with washington as his model he would forever try. Lafayette already emulated. His new role model in one damning respect george washington espoused the cause of liberty while enslaving human beings. He was one of the largest slave owners in north america and though it is often passed over we know during these early days in philadelphia. Lafayette came to own a slave. A quote negro boy purchased by one of the americans who sailed with him on lava tour. The boy was purchased in annapolis for a hundred and eighty pounds and use by lafayette to run errands philadelphia. No further references ever made to the boy after september. Seventeen seventy seven his life after this brief period. Lafayette is a total mystery. for lafayette. it became another inconvenient facts about his early life. He never spoke of in later years. Lafayette spent the next few weeks bouncing between philadelphia and washington. Nearby headquarters invited to review the continental army. Lafayette could not help but find them poorly clothed armed and disciplined. The french troops stationed at mets. Were the only soldiers he knew. And these men were not like those men. Self-consciously washington said. We should be embarrassed to show ourselves to an officer who has just left the french army to which lafayette famously replied. I'm here to learn not to teach. Lafayette said this with evidence and saturday. It was probably the first moment. Washington realize lafayette might be more than a nuisance tolerated for diplomatic reasons but lafayette also spent these early weeks. Peppering washington with requests for a real division to command. Washington was under the impression lafayette's commission was merely honorary and wrote to congress for clarification. They confirmed the appointment was honorary. They did not expect the market to actually command troops in battle washington called lafayette into a meeting and said he would not assign him a real command. But lafayette should still consider himself. Washington's son and friend the commander-in-chief continued to mean this metaphorically. Lafayette took it literally. The orphan. marquee believed he finally found a real home. George washington's main preoccupation in the late summer of seventeen seventy seven was trying to figure out. What the hell the redcoats were up to. The movements of the british army's north america baffle him. General john burgoyne was presently marching down from canada. After capturing fort ticonderoga burgoyne continued. Moving south from lake champlain through the wilderness of new york. Meanwhile general william how commander in chief of all british forces in america was established new york city after effortlessly expelling washington from the city the previous year. It seemed logical reasonable and inevitable. How would head north. Up the hudson river to link with burgoyne this would detach new england from the rest of the colonies and likely mark the beginning of the end of the rebellion. But instead in july seventeen seventy seven how ordered his men to board ships and sail away from new york city altogether. They had not been seen since washington could not make heads or tails of it. Washington's great mistake of course was trying to make sense of the senseless. He did not realize he was witnessing one of the great instances of the british losing the war of independence as much as the american to winning it. The british minister of war somehow managed to approve two contradictory plans during the campaign of seventeen. Seventy seven general going marching down from canada and general how capturing philadelphia the miscommunication among the senior command was so great that as burgoyne continued his leisurely stroll through the forest north of albany which some have taken to calling. Gentlemen janis potty train. He remained under the incorrect assumption. House army would arrive to support him. Burgoyne had no inkling of house plan to sail away to philadelphia. Washington puzzled over a chessboard. Trying grasp the hidden trap little realizing his opponent was simply making a blunder on august twenty. Second 1777 house army was finally spotted in chesapeake bay washington road out to personally reconnoiter the situation and invited lafayette to come along vie enjoyed his first action in a uniform on a horse and serving a glorious 'cause after investigating the british movements the continental army's determined how plan to capture philadelphia. Congress begged washington to fortify the city to withstand a siege but washington told them such a project was doomed to failure. The continental army would either stop the redcoats in an open battle where they would not stop them at all. In the first week of september it became clear how was leading his army on an oblique arc to approach and capture philadelphia from the west washington and his war council decided the best place to halt this advance was at brandy. Wine creek roughly twenty miles southwest of philadelphia the brand new wines swift current affair only a limited number of crossing points the most stable of which was chads ford here. The banks of the river were enclosed by cliffs and packed with large rocks and solid trees. It was the best possible place to make their stand september. Eleventh 1777 dawn heavy with fog and anticipation for lafayette. his dreams. Come true here. He wasn't america a major general in an army on the dawn of battle from the time he was a boy he planned to become a great soldier winning glory and fame through courage daring. Now the moment of truth was at hand. How would he respond. What he shrink from the fight hesitate run. Would he tripped and fallen his face. Would he di. This last question was the most important but it was likely the furthest from his mind not simply because all teenage boys are invincible but because as he told audran being a major general was a great guarantee of living through battle. It's not like he was a colonel on the front line. Like his dearly departed. Father the battle of brandy wine ultimately hinge on bad intelligence in the morning hessian soldiers german mercenaries in the king's employ approach chads ford as expected but around noon washington was told a second british column wheeled around to the north realizing this meant the force in front of him a chance. Ford was numerically. Inferior washington nearly ordered his men to charge down across the river but then he was told the second. British column was a mirage so he held back. unfortunately the first report was true. The second mistaken. With the clarity of hindsight it is easy to see. Washington's missed opportunity but in the confusion of approaching battle nothing is clear at all. Besides another crucial piece of bad intelligence already sealed the fate of the continental army despite reports to the contrary there was another stable crossing further up the river. Washington's army was about to be outflanked in the late afternoon. frantic word. Came that a british force previously unaccounted for bore down on the relatively weak continental right flank with the battle lines shifting lafayette requested permission to ride off and joined the fray washington agreed either too distracted to realize. He was sending this invaluable marquee into the thick of battle or because he knew the boy needed a real war story to brag about back home to help sell the french government on the merits of the american. Cause whichever it was. Lafayette raced off at top speed before washington changed his mind. Lafayette road straight into blistering and noisy chaos with unruffled nerves. He took stock of the situation and did what he could to. Bolster the continental line crumpling under heavy british fire. He dismounted and physically pushed men forward calling in his best english to fix bayonets and prepare for close quarters combat. But the continental soldiers wanted no part of bayonet duels with the stronger and better trained british regulars. Which would most likely lead them. Dying slowly on the forest floor from a punctured lung appeared heart or slashed throat as About a musket ball shot clean through the fleshy muscle of his lower calf his adrenaline pumping. Lafayette did not even feel it. Only after looking down and noticing blood pouring from a hole in his boot did he realize he was wounded as dusk descended. The battle was lost. George washington found. The young marquee forced back onto his horse by an aide. Light headed from loss of blood and unable to continue fighting as washington deployed reinforcements to cover the continental retreat. He ordered lafayette to quit the field despite his wound. Lafayette continued serving as best. He could with men retreating haphazardly toward the town of chester. He posted himself at the bridge over a small creek to intercept in flight. He reformed them to hold the bridge and protect the retreat of their comrades. This is where washington next found. Lafayette the potentially burdensome young french nobleman wounded but imposing order amid so much disastrous confusion though washington grappled with the grim embarrassment of defeat. He was impressed by lafayette's dogged and selfless courage. The boy was not like the others. The battle of brandy wine was a crucial defeat for the americans that led to the fall of philadelphia. The continental army inflicted real casualties on its opponent but absorbed as many losses as it inflicted probably more. They lost four hundred. Soldiers captured by the enemy to say nothing of the pennsylvania militia forces most of whom ran off never to return. It was another low point for washington in what had become a war defined by low points for lafayette. The battle of brandy wine was a great success. A formidable first step onto the stage of history. He accomplished everything he came to do. He passed his test with flying colors. He ran toward battle. Not away from it. He stood his ground under heavy fire. He was shot and shrugged it off. His commander in chief found him wounded and bleeding but still struggling to protect his comrades since joining the household. Lafayette seemed destined for to quench obscurity occasionally mocked but usually ignored society even described his admirable decision to run away to america as cleo fully brilliant madness. Yes it was brilliant but still madness. The most likely result of these amusing dramatics was lafayette. Returning home failure proving he was indeed a fool but instead he succeeded brilliantly at the battle of brandy wine. Lafayette objectively incontrovertibly proved himself the adroitly diplomatic george washington himself pleasantly surprised. Lafayette's bravery incentive duty welcome virtues and an army of soldiers known for running hiding and deserting paid him public honor in his brief dispatch to congress announcing the unfortunate defeat at brandy. Wine washington did not failed to mention the marquis. Lafayette was wounded in the leg. Washington new newspapers would publish the dispatch. Flattering lafayette's vanity. It also spread the idea that the interests of and france were now. Joined in this dashing. Young hero the marquis. Lafayette after his wound was bandaged. La headed back to philadelphia to prepare for general evacuation. When lafayette re entered philadelphia he rejoined his erstwhile. Comrades from la victoire. They were still put off by congress and many prepared to return home. Dekalb was the only one who made any headway because he spoke english. The other french officers admired lafayette's exploits one joke. Lafayette wound would buy more advantages than his entire fortune. Now that he had what he came for martial. Glory a great adventure and an honorable but non-life-threatening wound. They suggested he come home with them. But lafayette refused the blood he spilled at brandy. Wine was not the end of the story but the beginning he now considered himself not just a member of the y. but of the washington's he could not leave now when there were so much left to do from this proving ground beside brand pine creek the legend of lafayette. The hero of two worlds was born. Though tales of his exploits would grow take on a life of their own and culminate with enshrinement. In the pantheon of american history. The legend was not grounded in fiction. It was not a literary invention. It sprang from real personal bravery determination and sacrifice as he said before leaving france. When i succeed everyone will applaud the efforts for anyone else. These might have been famous last words for lafayette. They were his opening lines. So i hope you enjoyed that as much as i did you can pre-order hero of two worlds from wherever books can be preordered from Obviously your favourite local independent bookstore but also barnes and noble books. a million. These are bookstores. That are out there in the world that need love to And if you have found me on twitter or talked about this a little bit we do now have just as of this week. A google map of all the different bookstores. That hero of two worlds has been preordered from their website. You can go to it and just enter your name and where the bookstore is and like what city and state were not collecting any information. You don't even have to give us your email address. This is just. I wanna keep track of how many different bookstores. We are supporting as of right now. There are hundreds already entered. And we've got all fifty states except for north dakota and south dakota so people in the dakotas please get with it. Got people from all over the world. And i'm looking at the map right now. We've got england. Scotland ireland the netherlands. Germany switzerland spain denmark sweden norway finland turkey. Australia new zealand taiwan. Hello taiwan see you. What's up Ironically of course. There's no preorders from france yet. You know obviously living there for three years. I got a huge following Anyway preorder the book good night.
ARP206 George Washington in Philadelphia
"Hello and thank you for joining the american revolution this week episode two. Oh six george washington in philadelphia. Last week i covered the issues facing the continental congress over the winter of seventeen. Seventy eight seventy nine. The government was facing problems and divisions not only from the silas deane investigations but also chronic shortages for the army and disputes overdue strategies. General washington traveled to philadelphia to consult with congress on some of these matters this week. I want to focus on. Washington's visit to philadelphia during this important time on december. Twenty first seventeen seventy eight. General washington left the army under the command of major general. William alexander also known as lord sterling. He noted to sterling that congress had requested his attendance and that he would be gone for a few days after a hard sixty mile ride. Washington arrived in philadelphia on the evening of december twenty second. A local newspaper noted his arrival quote. Too great for pomp and as if fond of the plane and respectable rank of a free and independent citizen. His excellency came in so late in the day. As to prevent the philadelphia troop of militia. Late horse gentlemen officers of the militia and others of this city from showing those marks of unfazed regard for this good and great man which they fully intended and especially of receiving him at the entrance into the state and escorting him hither as. We've seen up until this time. General washington rarely left the army for any reason as leader. He wanted to be present as often as possible. However since congress was trying to develop military strategy for the coming year he felt that he had to provide some input in person. Some of these confidential discussions could not be relegated to written correspondence. The party that accompanied washington to philadelphia included. His wife martha also with him was his secretary. Robert hanssen harrison as well as his aides to camp alexander. Hamilton john lawrence richard kidder. Meade antenna tillman. Philadelphia's biggest political dispute at the time was the open feud between silas deane and congress. There was also a major fight brewing between the new president of pennsylvania and washington's former aide joseph reed and the military governor of philadelphia benedict arnold. That's something. I wanna get into in more detail in a future episode but it was a big source of tension in the city at the time. Congress was also still trying to dispose of the charges against general thompson who was allegedly showing disrespect for congress. Something that i talked about in more detail last week also the same day. That washington entered philadelphia. The continental army issued its final orders. Suspending general charles lee from command for one year. This was after congress had approved the court martial decision against louis. Washington's aide john lawrence fought a duel with general lead the following day lee had continued to criticize washington and many washington. Supporters felt the need to fight for their commanders. Honor lawrence's second at the dual and washington's other aide alexander hamilton called for an end to the dual after the first shot left general lee with a minor wound a year earlier. Washington had been fighting for command of the army as the conway. Cabal threatened to remove him from command by this time though pretty much everyone either supported washington or at least had the political savvy to keep quiet about any reservations that they might have had generally was apparently still oblivious to that and as a result had to fight the dual with john lawrence. The reality in philadelphia was that washington had become universally respected and was seen as a source of stability in an increasingly chaotic world. On december twenty fourth congress passed a resolution to invite the commander-in-chief to give testimony washington held meetings with the committee however the committee discussions were secret and no record of the discussions were made. We do know that one of washington's primary reasons for his visit was to quash any plans to engage in another invasion of quebec france. Seem very interested in the idea of invading. Quebec washington did not want to offend america's only european ally at the same time he saw the establishment of a french controlled. Quebec is a long term problem for the united states. Washington was all too familiar with francis prior efforts to keep the british colony's limited to the coast while france claimed all of the inland areas west of the appalachian mountains for the king of france on tuesday. Congress resolved not to plan any invasion of quebec for the following year having resolved that question and having planned to be in philadelphia for only a few days one would expect washington to have returned to the army in new jersey instead. Washington remained in philadelphia as it turns out for over a month during those weeks that he remained. He noted in several letters that he always planned to return to the army within a few days. But that return just seemed to be getting delayed more and more. It's not entirely clear. What caused him to. Continuously changed his mind and remain in the city. Washington did continue to meet with the committee through january. A note written by washington on january eighth suggests that continued discussion was needed over recruiting a plan for the next campaign prospects of further aid from europe clothing and supplies changes in the clothing hospital and engineering departments and establishment of inspector ship as well as the paper currency crisis a week later washington provided a more detailed report to congress in hamilton's handwriting which outlined various options for offensives in seventeen seventy nine. This report was likely the result of washington's conversations with the congressional committee in the report washington evaluated three options. The first option was an all out assault on the british garrisons at new york and newport to expel the british which washington noted was the most desired goal. The army would have to be increased in size to at least twenty six thousand effectives which was far larger and army than the continentals had ever managed to put in the field washington observe because there were other economic opportunities in the states and life in the army was so poor that they could not hope to recruit such a large army and even if they could congress was unable to feed and clothe the existing army let alone one. That was two or three times the size of the current one given these limitations. Washington concluded that an all out assault was simply off the table. The second operation under consideration was an assault on niagara. This would serve as a defense against any future raids from canada for such an operation. Washington argued that the army would still need to leave at least thirteen thousand men near new york to prevent any british actions from its main forces at new york and newport. The continentals would need another seven or eight thousand soldiers for the action against niagara again. Those numbers were nearly as large as the estimates needed for an all out assault on british forces and with not nearly as important a goal washington believed that a nagra offensive would be even more expensive than all out assault on new york since it would involve moving massive amounts of supplies through remote and hostile territory in upstate new york where loyalists and native tribes still conducted raids again. The us simply did not have the resources for this sort of offensive that left the third option. State almost entirely on the defensive. The continentals would remain in northern new jersey. New york preventing the british in new york city or newport from having any room for offensive operations given the army's resources washington considered this the best option. The continental congress could not afford to significantly enlarge the army instead they would have to focus on increasing the national of food by leaving more men on the farms washington urged to continue its diplomatic efforts to continue to obtain more loans in order that they might have the resources to take more actions at some point in the future in short washington was telling congress that there was no way to end the war anytime soon. Congress was gonna need to find a way to come up with more resources before that would change. Washington did refer generally to taking some actions against hostile tribes in upstate new york and further to the west. He noted that the army needed to secure the frontier but he left vague his actual intentions on how to handle that problem left out of the final report where some sections for draft version which speculated that britain might pull out on its own due to internal political pressures and the need to focus on the war with france the draft also speculated that britain had an incentive to hold onto a garrison in north america because it gave the king of place to hold large numbers of troops that was relatively close to its island. Colonies in the west indies but still in a climate where the soldiers did not die in great numbers from tropical diseases. The draft went on to discuss the role of france and possibly spain in future efforts. It expressed a belief that spain's entry into the war might tip the naval balance sufficiently. That britain would have to pull out of the us entirely. It appears that hamilton removed several pages of the report about all this speculation. He may have done so because washington did not agree with his assessment. It may also be that. Washington did not want to speculate on the actions of the enemy and its allies but wanted to keep the focus on the resources and capabilities of the continental army. At this time the other big issue left out of the report entirely was the defense of the southern colonies. It's most likely that word of the british capture of savannah had not reached philadelphia by the time washington submitted his report. He did not seem to envision any major operations in the southern colonies for the coming year. Congress as you may recall had sent benjamin lincoln to take over the southern command but there were no plans to increase the troop levels in those regions and he soldiers would need to be recruited locally. Lincoln didn't write washington about the capture of savannah until january fifth or sixth. And if he didn't send an express rider news might not have arrived for several weeks. Washington's report to congress appears to have been delivered on january eighth seventeen seventy nine. And the i mentioned in the congressional record at least of the capture of does not appear until january twentieth. That would be about three weeks. After britain had captured savannah. So as i said washington's report gave no consideration to any expanded warfare in the southern states and anticipated no focus on a southern campaign for seventeen seventy nine washington's biggest concern about maintaining the continental army was that he would have no army to maintain in the written report. Washington only talked about the general difficulties of supply in the current army and the fact that many unless minutes would end in the coming months in the field. Soldiers were grumbling about being unpaid underfed ill clad and left in such a state of deprivation that the army might disband on. Its own washington urged congress to offer large signing bonuses to keep soldiers enlisted for the duration of the war. Congress agreed that men would receive a signing bonus of two hundred dollars to continue in service for the course of the war it also offered generous bonuses to recruiters who enlisted the soldiers with the optimistic tone. At least publicly that seventeen seventy nine would probably be the final year of the war as the continentals. Push the british out with french assistance. Congress hope that soldiers would turn out in sufficient numbers to finish the job in truth though. No one expected the war to end in seventeen. Seventy nine officer compensation was also a problem. Many officers were tired of the miserable conditions and unlike many enlisted men had many more attractive options to go to back home. The lack of any major military operations meant that they would be sitting on camp fighting boredom and thinking about all the deprivations. They were suffering while away from home and while the civilians around them were prospering. Much as the enlisted men were eager to return home. Washington urged congress to agree to pay officers a pension of half pay for life if they remained until the end of the war. That was the deal that british regular officers received congress though thought that was too expensive. Instead it agreed to half pay for officers for seven years following the end of the war. That was enough time for them to get back on their own feet and return to work. Washington did not believe that that was sufficient inducement for many as it put their old age integrate risk but that was what congress is willing to offer so that is what he got. There is no record of washington having met with general arnold during his visit. This is not to say that the two men didn't meet there. Were a great many days when there was no record for what washington was doing. How ever the lack of any public meetings with the military governor while holding several meetings both official and social with his chief rival joseph reed may indicate that washington was concerned about the charges of greed and corruption being levied against arnold on christmas day general washington and his wife. Martha accepted an invitation to dine at the home of joseph. Read the president of pennsylvania's supreme executive council in attendance were washington's aide john lawrence new york delegate and president of congress john jay massachusetts delegate samuel holton and spanish arms-dealer one day morales who the governor of cuba had sent as an observer to the continental congress. The following monday december twenty eighth washington attended a celebration at the festival of saint john the evangelist hosted by the local society of free and accepted masons. He was given a place of honor in their procession of thirtieth washington wrote to benjamin harrison about his concerns for the country and the war effort. Oh well these comments don't seem to be directed specifically at arnold washington likely had heard a great deal from joseph read on the topic. Washington may also have had in mind dean affair which led to the resignation of henry lawrence as president of congress and was still a divisive issue. His thoughts probably applied to a great many leaders it does express washington's concern about the men looking more to their private interest rather than those of the country quote if i was to be called upon to draw a picture of the times and of men from what i have seen and heard and in part no i should in one word say that idleness and extravagance seems to have laid fast hold to most of them that speculation pecu- location at an insatiable thirst for riches seems to have got the better of every other consideration and almost every order of men that party. Disputes and personal quarrels are the great business of the day. Whilst momentous concerns of an empire a great and accumulated debt ruined finances depreciated money and a want credit which in their consequences is want of everything are but secondary considerations and postpone from day to day from week to week. As if our affairs where the most promising aspect after drawing this picture which from my soul. I believe to be true one. I need not repeat to you that i am alarmed and wished to see my countrymen roused on january fourth. Seventeen seventy nine general. Mrs washington dined at the home of robert morris another delegate who was also under investigation for self dealing at the time two days later washington attended a party at the home of elizabeth. Willing powell a prominent socialite and washington noticed at the dinner that it was his. And martha's twenty th wedding anniversary that night. Several weeks later on january. Eighteen washington attended a banquet hosted by congress in honor of the french minister. Gerard it was a celebration of the alliance with france at an effort to repair relations after the. Us decided not to work with france. On the conquest of quebec washington once again delayed his return to the army after the supreme executive council requested that he sit for a portrait by charles. willson peel. The painting was commissioned to hang in the council chamber still in philadelphia on january. Twenty ninth washington wrote to president john j to inform congress that he would finally believing the city quote. My long and unexpected stay in this city being attended with many inconveniences to the common business of the army and in other respects i feel myself under the necessity of requesting permission of congress to return and if consistent with their views. I should be glad to set out for the camp at middlebrook on monday next. Despite this announced departure the following monday found washington still in philadelphia and sitting for yet another portrait. Jay had requested. He sit for a metal that jay wished to create finally on tuesday february. Second washington departed the city. A local newspaper noted the departure quote. Tuesday morning his excellency. Jerrell washington set off from philadelphia to join the army in new jersey. During the course of his short-stay the only relief. He has enjoyed from service since he first entered into it. He was honored with every mark of esteem. Which is exalted qualities as a gentleman and a citizen and title him to his excellency stay was rendered the more agreeable by the company of his lady and the domestic retirement which he enjoyed at the house of the henry lawrence esquire with whom he resided without announced departure washington finally returned to his army although no one may have fully appreciated it yet. Washington was transitioning from a field commander into more of a political leader. He did remain with the army in the field but he largely remained near new york city for most of the remainder of the war. Major combat operations in that area had come to an end. Washington's main focus change from attacking the british to keeping his army properly supplied and his ranks properly filled. He left most of the combat to his major generals who pursued the war in the south the next week. I wanna take a look at british and french. Plans for seventeen seventy nine. Hey thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show thanks to my patriot supporters in the alexander. Hamilton club train aunts. George davis lewis white and george hunter. Also thanks to robert morris circle supporter mike haggar. I've got lots going on for the next three weekends on saturday. June twenty six twenty twenty one the week after this episode releases. I'm holding a live. Meet up in philadelphia for anyone who wants to come Having lunch at the boerse at noon right near independence hall then at one thirty. I'll be meeting in washington square at the tomb of the revolutionary war soldier. The event is rain or shine. I have a room available across the street from the park in the curtis center. If the weather is bad. I hope that you could show up and meet me and other fans of the podcast to the american revolution if you want more details check out my website at www dot amriyev podcast dot com the weekend after that is the fourth of july. I'm going to be holding a special live. Podcast episode on sunday july fourth at noon eastern time. This is a great chance for you to interact with me and ask any questions. You may have about the revolution or anything else. this is an online event. So unlike the eventphiladelphia you can join from anywhere in the country from the comfort of your own home. There's a link on my website or you can use the pod bean app for a better interactive experience. I hope you'll be able to join me. Live on july fourth finally the weekend after that is history camp america and all day event where you can listen to a wide variety of great history presentations. If you want more details on that go to history camp dot org ed remember. You can use the coupon code. Amriyev twenty one to save on tickets. So this week we looked at washington's efforts to impress upon congress the limitations of the army based on congress's inability to recruit or feed a larger army washington had expected to be in philadelphia for only a few days but he remained for over a month during this. We see washington becoming more able politician and someone who could convince the civilian government without the slightest threat of using military force against them. Washington did not get all that he wanted from the talks but his respect among other leaders only continued to grow it was washington's ability to retain unified military leadership and the support of congress which kept the revolution on track in a way. That many thought would never happen. Most revolutions descended into anarchy or become taken over by military dictator over. There are some signs that congress was losing control. Washington very definitely did not step into act over them rather he continued to work with them and accept civilian rule regardless of what the civilians finally decided that he should do that. Is what made washington the indispensable man. And that is the title of this week's book recommendation. Washington the indispensable man by james thomas flexner. The basic premise of the book is that washington was probably the only person at the time who could have guided the us through these difficult times. Both winning the war and establishing a democratic republic. The book is actually an abridged version of a larger four volume. Work that flexner wrote on. George washington in the nineteen sixties. His book washington. The indispensable man came out in nineteen seventy four. It gives great coverage of the key events in washington's life and how he kept the us on course toward becoming a republic. My online recommendation. This week is an e book on archived dot org called the itinerary of general washington from june fifteenth. Seventeen seventy five to december twenty third seventeen eighty three. This is actually kind of a lengthy book and probably not one that you'll want to read cover to cover the book tracks washington through every single day of the war and records through primary source accounts where he was and what he was doing. I find this to be a very helpful tool for figuring out where washington was uncertain dates. So it's a great reference tool for me and you might find interesting as well. It was originally assembled for a series of journal articles but was published as a book in eighteen. Ninety two as always you can search for the book on our dot org or i've included a direct link on my website at www dot amriyev podcast dot com. I've got another question to answer this week. Daniel asks what would have happened. Had king george and great britain been more open to accepting the continental congress olive branch petition in july. Seventeen seventy five. We'll daniel of the continental congress had been hoping for and expecting a political compromise to the dispute in the years leading up to the war agenda that deteriorated after lexington and concord. Shed blood only weeks. Before the second continental congress i met even so delegates to that second congress still did not think independence and military. Victory was a realistic option. That is why congress sent the olive branch petition. It gave the king one last chance to intervene. Blame parliament for going too far and work out. A peaceful solution had the king accepted the petition and agreed to send peace commissioners to discuss a political compromise. Solution it probably would have divided the patriots. Many radicals particularly in new england had already begun to think that nothing short of independence would work by this time wants blood was shed at lexington concord. They thought there was really no choice. But independence or slavery many other colonists so including perhaps george washington recognize that giving the military strength of britain. A political compromise that protected colonial rights was the best outcome they could expect. The delegates had congress and most of the colonial public really became convinced that independence was the only option once can george categorically rejected the petition and openly supported the use of more troops to crush the colonial rebellion had king. George acted otherwise. They're likely would not have been a declaration of independence. The following year in seventeen seventy six even if some delegates to like the idea there would not have been the unanimity that they needed and many of the colonies would have refused to go along with it. Most of the colonists would have celebrated the king as the protector of english liberties and would have been happy to serve as british subjects for years to come. There was however no real chance of this alternative history happening king. The third we know now. In retrospect one of the strongest advocates for a military crackdown. He viewed any compromise. Once the americans took arms against the regulars and spill blood as showing weakness the colonists needed to be shown who was boss. Then perhaps the government could show some mercy and leniency. Once the colonists had been decimated and begged for the king's mercy by the time britain was ready to compromise several years later. In seventeen seventy eight. The americans were more confident in their ability to stand up to the british military and at that point were pretty unanimous in rejecting anything short of independence. in seventeen. seventy five oh those same compromises would have been cause for celebration in the colonies. In hindsight it's easy to look back and say yes. The king took a very wrong. Turn in seventeen seventy five by standing tough but let's face it. Kings did become kings or stay kings very long if they gave away political power every time a few people ask for it so as we expected king george held tough called for a military crackdown and bet that he would be successful. Of course that proved to be a bad bet. Remember if you have a question you'd like answered on the show. Please be sure to email me. Amtrak dot history at gmail.com and you can find that address on my website at dot amriyev. Podcast dot com well. That's offered this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcasts.
Episode 108 The French Connection
"Hello and thank you for joining the American Revolution Today episode. One Oh eight the French connection one of the arguments for declaring independence in July seventeen seventy six was the hope of encouraging foreign assistance for the war effort since local production in America would never meet demand. Congress would have to make alliances overseas that would facilitate an international arm straight the problem with that was that any country that would engage in such a trade would incur the wrath of Britain and would likely have to go to war with Britain America's best bet for an ally Lane Europe was France which of course seemed to be at war with Britain more often than not over the prior century or to the former British colonists would have to move past their gut reaction of hating the French new Englanders especially had grown up hating the French and going to war with French colonists for most goes to their lives as well as the lives of their parents and grandparents most British colonists thought the French Monarch King Louis the sixteenth was even worse than King George the third when it came to guaranteeing the rights of his subjects the language barrier and the fact that the French raw Catholics did not help help much either but going under the theory that the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Congress reached out to France to see if they could find a mutually beneficial arrangement back in March seventeen seventy six congress sent Silas Deane to France to see what he could do about a French alliance for more on that go back and listen to episode eighty-three Dean had been a delegate from Connecticut to the Continental Congress but did not speak French inch and had never been to Europe before. I'm not sure that he had ever even left. The colonies. Dean was the son of a blacksmith. He received a good education again. Well as good as you can. Get from a local school like Yale College and became a lawyer. He married the widow of a wealthy trader which may have given him the opportunity to travel to the West indies were just not clear on that but he had no diplomatic experience nor much of any idea how he was going to who sail across the Atlantic Ocean and convinced the King of France to form an alliance and support American independence fortunately for Dean others I had already been reaching out to France and getting the ministry at Versailles to start thinking about what it could do to make Britain situation more miserable in America okay. One of those men was Arthur. Lee Lee was Virginian who had lived most of his adult life in Britain actually much of his childhood to since since he got shipped off to a British boarding school at age eleven he studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh and studied law in London he'd in practicing law in London since about seventeen seventy. Lee's entry into British. Society came from the fact that he was from one of the most prominent and wealthy not families in Virginia. He was the brother of Richard Henry. Lee who had been a delegate to the first and second continental congresses in fact Arthur Arthur had four brothers who served either in the Continental Congress or the Virginia House of Burge's a fifth brother had also moved to Britain and served it as an Alderman for the city of London as I said Arthur Lee had a legal practice in London there he had also been an outspoken advocate for colonial rights writes in the years leading up to the war he wrote radical articles not only about colonial rights but also has an anti slavery advocate. Lee had become become involved with committees of correspondence reading regularly to Samuel Adams in the years leading up to the war providing information on how London was reacting to to colonial resistance. Lee also new Benjamin Franklin while Franklin was living in London before he returned to America in seventeen seventy five despite his pedigree. Lee had a proclivity for paranoia and backstabbing part of this may have been from the fact that his older brothers had cheated cheated him out of his inheritance when his father died and while he was still a child Lee still had a working relationship with his powerful and influential brothers but he developed a cynicism at an early age that everyone is out for themselves and you should probably screw others before they can screw you. Although Franklin went went out of his way to assist with his career London Lee never seem to trust nor even respect Franklin instead he seemed to want to trample over our franklin and push him out of the way Franklin held several colonial representative positions in London that Lee wanted for himself when Franklin return to America League took over many of these roles and took an active role in according other Englishmen in support of protecting colonial rights back in early seventeen seventy five. Lee had attended a dinner party at John Wilkes his home. Remember that Wilkes was a radical whig on on very bad terms with the king and a strong supporter of colonial rights. He did have a popular following in Britain and was at the time Lord Mayor Mayor of London at Wilkes Dinner Party. Lee Met French playwright Pierre Augustine Daycare on better known by his stage name Bomar Marseille the party happened shortly afterward of Lexington and concord had reached London. The outbreak of a shooting war in New England was a hot topic of conversation conversation fomer. Shea had been in town for some time to do some dirty work for King Louis a French spy in London had been threatening to release papers papers showing that France had planned an invasion of England a few years earlier it turns out that the spy who had been a French soldier for many years and who even disguised himself as a woman to perform a covert mission in Russia years earlier might actually be a woman no one was really sure until after this person's death the story of this person Charles Chevalier Day Yom Day Beaumont is a fascinating story story in itself especially if you're interested in transgender historical figures but I don't WanNa get too distracted from the story at hand fomer. Shea A had led the life of a French Aristocrat WanNa be who never quite made it he had been a tutor to King Louis the fifteenth daughters and and use that relationship to form a close relationship with a wealthy man of influence named Joseph Paris to Rene Paris du Vernay. I had been a successful arms merchant. The two men formed a close relationship. Some evidence indicates. They were homosexual lovers. Even though Paris paris-to-bordeaux was about fifty years older than Bo marsh after the death of Paris du Vernay in seventeen seventy fomer shave found himself the subject of of lawsuits and Criminal Prosecution for fraud of course at the time France did not recognize homosexual relationships and Paris juvenile had given many gifts chiefs to boomer. Shay that it was kind of hard to Bom Shay to explain outside of such a very close relationship between the two men he obviously couldn't use is that as defense because being homosexual was of course a capital offence in France at the time as a result fomer. Shea received none of Paris duvalier's estate <unk> an actually had to pay back many of the gifts that Paris juvenile had given to boomer Shea over his lifetime still in seventeen seventy five Bomar shea a hope to get back in the king's favour by helping the king with this transgender spy dion who was in London threatening to release documents that might bring Britain and France into another war so that's the background that led Bomar Shay to meet Arthur Lee in London at a dinner party <music> at the home of John Wilkes the two men immediately began working out a plan to funnel arms covertly from France to America neither Beaumont Shea normally seem concerned with the fact that neither of them had any authorization from the home country to do anything. Lee considered himself a secret agent working on behalf of the Continental Congress in fact Congress had done nothing more than sent him a letter asking if there were others in London Linden who were friendly to the cause and with whom they should be corresponding fomer. Shea only had a very unofficial and couvert request from the French French ministry to deal with that Yana Fair before it became a public scandal nothing more but unofficially Lee had the close connections actions with the Continental Congress and Bomer Shay was inexperienced arms dealer with at least some contacts in the French Foreign Ministry the two men began working working out plans to create a private company in France that would purchase arms then smuggled them across the Atlantic Ocean to the Continental Army America would pay for the the arms with Virginia tobacco. Both men seem to think that they would make a fortune in commissions from all these transactions. Their secret plans did did not remain secret very long. Although Arthur Lee tended to be very paranoid. One of the few men he took into his confidence was a man named. I'm Paul Wentworth who seems to have made a living as a con man. What worth almost immediately sold the information of the steel to the British ministry meaning London knew about the plot before anyone in Philadelphia or Versailles knew about it. The British did not break up the cabal though instead they continued continued to use Wentworth as their inside man so that they can keep tabs on what was happening for much of the next year. Lee and Bomer Shea continued talks hatching plans to covertly trade arms for tobacco making both of them rich Bomar Shea began lobbying the French ministry had forci by excited at the idea of getting in on the ground floor of a major covert arms operation all he had to do was convinced the government to start a major for covert arms operation and then figure out how to become the key figure to run it. He began by sending several proposals to King Louis early in his correspondence fomer. Shea argued that France had a self interest in supporting the colonial rebellion in America at the time the rebellion had become a major distraction for Britain but eventually one of three things would happen either Britain would crush the rebellion and and then have more time money and resources to capture French colonies in the West indies cash-strapped Britain would need these colonies to pay off its debts from the the French and Indian war a second possibility was that Britain and its colonies would come to a settlement in which case they're combined military power could be used take French colonies in the West indies a settlement with North American colonies. Matt Britain could not raise revenue there so they could raise it by exploiting exploiting former French colonies in the West indies third and this was probably the least likely the colonies could win independence in which case they would become a new power in America ANCA also threaten you guessed it French colonies in the West indies therefore it was in France's best interest interest to keep the dispute between Britain and its American colonies going for as long as possible this would divert British attention and resources towards securing the North American colonies and not give it time or resources to think about acquiring others and extended rebellion lasting years would weaken Britain and approve Francis relative position against its age old enemy on the other hand. If Britain found out that France was meddling in this rebellion it would consider that an act of war Britain and France would find themselves in yet another expensive war and Britain could use is that war as an excuse to seize more yes French colonies in the West indies. France really did not want to start another war but if they could who provide a little covert assistance to North America that could help keep Britain distracted which would be to Francis Benefit French Foreign Foreign Minister Charles Gravier comte Virgen did not even pass along fomer. Shays proposals to the king nor did he allow bomer. Shay to be he granted an audience with the king starting covert military aid was a dangerous game besides for Jan wanted Bomar Shay to focus on in cleaning up the day he owns spy affair in order to prevent that war with Britain not hatch a whole new arm steel that could start a different war with Britain even if cautious though for Jan saw the possible benefits of distracting Britain in an ongoing rebellion recall that in late seventeen eighteen seventy five for gen had very quietly sent bone villar to Philadelphia to speak very unofficially with the Continental Congress and get an idea idea what was going on there. I discussed that in more detail back in episode seventy one. Virgen received inflator reports from both Mall Villar are and Bomer Shay that Washington had amassed an army of nearly forty thousand with thousands more in militia available to back him up of course I Washington had nowhere near these numbers but since Virginia had nothing else to go on he saw the rebellion as a credible problem for the British. In March seventeen seventy six version began to raise the issue with the king and some other top officials small amounts of aid that could not be traced back to to the French government might prolong the rebellion and we can Britain France had already begun rebuilding its army navy but was not ready for war now now at some point where with Britain was inevitable but the American distraction could delay that war and could also weaken Britain when war finally it came after some debate King Louis decided in May to provide some covert assistance. Bomar Shea created a trading company called called Rodriguez Hortas and company this would be a front for the covert arms smuggling that France was considering for Jan had convinced the king that it it wasn't Francis best interest to prolong the fighting in America in order to sap the military and economic strength Britain but as I said France had no interest in American Eric Independence and certainly did not want to promote the idea that it was okay for subjects to engage in an armed rebellion against king if they did not like his policies policies but if America became more of a distraction for the British over the next few years that will be just fine the French ministry indirectly gave gave a million levers about eight million dollars in modern inflation adjusted currency to the Rodrigue Hortas and company later they would get the king of Spain to kick in another million and would raise a third million from private investors fo- Marcia would use about half the money to purchase used used arms all over Europe and use the other half to establish credit for the Americans when the American ship tobacco in exchange the money would be he repaid and return to the various investors now. All of this was already in play before anyone in Europe knew that Silas Deane gene was still slowly making his way across the Atlantic Congress had appointed dean in March seventeen seventy six. He did not arrive in France. That's until June and then took him another month to reach Paris. In July deans cover story was that he was a private trader looking for commercial opportunities in France as soon as he stepped off the ship. Burnish agents began tailing him suspecting he was up to no good congress. I had provided dean with a few contacts and France and some letters of introduction one was for Edward Bancroft a Massachusetts born doctor then living in London Bancroft and Franklin had known each other in London. There is also some evidence that Dean and Bancroft already knew each other. Some records suggest that Bancroft was a student of Deans Wendy was a schoolteacher in Connecticut Teen wrote to Bancroft in London and asked him to come visit him in Paris sending him travel money. Bancroft degree to help and the two men met with Jacques Babu do Berg a French arms dealer Dr. Do Berg and turn arranged a meeting with version and the Foreign Ministry for Jan took the meeting although he moved it away for the main offices offices of the Foreign Ministry to an isolated location where he hoped there would be little attention. The cautious version did not reveal to any of the men at the meeting that the king had already decided to provide covert assistance instead he told him that France was obligated to remain neutral oh and could not assist them however for Janet did suggests that Dean meet with a private arms merchant named Bomar Shea who now ray in the large trading firm of Rodriguez Hortas and company do Berg told Dean later not to contact bomer Shea who was mostly known for writing plays like the Barber Uber of Seville and the marriage of Figaro he was not a player in the international arms trade nor even known much as a merchant at all so so dean decided not to speak with Bomar Shea and continued to work with Dubar a few weeks later for Jan again suggested that Dean speak with Bomar Shay Okay this time. Dean took the hint and sap a meeting of course Bomar Shea who is secretly financed but the kings money offered Dean extremely really generous terms of credit and promised boatloads of supplies to be shipped in short order the two men worked out all the details with bancroft acting as has translator a few weeks after making the initial range moments and with Bomar Shea busily making purchases and filling up ships to send to America Bancroft Bancroft returned to London Dean offered Bancroft three hundred pounds sterling a year to help keep track of what was happening in London and for any intelligence that he could provide shortly after his arrival in London Bancroft met with the British Foreign Ministry and told them everything that Dean and Bomer shave were doing in France. Bancroft accepted an offer of five hundred pounds sterling a year from the British government to continue spying on Dean's activities in France so the double agent was collecting a nice salary from both sides the British had an inside man into everything France was doing to funnel title arms to America however they could not confront France without jeopardizing their source for now they would simply collect intelligence and wait for an opportunity to use it so despite British knowledge of the arms trade from the very beginning French assistance began to flow to America by August seventeen seventy six rodrigue cordless had purchased about two hundred tons of gunpowder twenty thousand small arms and a number Bruce Cannon mortars and other equipment needed in America. The company had considerable trouble with shipments making it to port as British spies were informing. I mean French police who had to stop these illegal shipments the British ambassador to France Lord Stormont complained directly to version about the operation for Jen of course denied any involvement he was shocked shocked that illegal arms smuggling was going on and he promised Imus to look right into that matter the ambassador new virgin was lying since he had bancroft giving him all the details but because the British were not ready to reveal another source they kept their complaints vague aside from the British do board upset about being cut out of the deals began attacking Bomar Shea. Hey as a con artist who was enriching himself without the ability to deliver on his promises Arthur Lee who was upset about being cut out of the arms deals as as well became even more of a problem he started badmouthing Dean to his friends and family in the Continental Congress. He then traveled to Paris. To See if he could still get involved in the deals now moving forward among other things Li created a list of Americans whom he considered disloyal to the Patriot cause ause including several members of the Continental Congress Lee Wanted Dean to send this list to Congress Dean refused saying he was not going wait to defame the reputation of Goodman on speculation without solid proof for Lee. This seemed to indicate that Dane was part of a conspiracy to you. Destroy the Patriot cause despite making all these enemies and despite the obstructive efforts of British spies tuborg and Lee Dean and Bomar Shea began shipping much needed supplies to America next week New York City Burns and the British hang a spy named Nathan Hale Hi thanks for joining the American Revolution podcast after show. I WanNa thank one of the shows Robert Morris Circle supporters on patron Tyson France runs a site called liberty and Co he sells a wide range of products with American revolution themes aims so if you're looking for t shirts magnets candles mugs etc this is a great place to find a product with an American revolution or constitution itution theme. I was checking out some of the candles the other day on the site. They're all hand- poured and come with some really unique sense related to the revolution Russian for example the we the people candle smells like parchment and of course the Boston Tea Party candle smells like Bo-hi T.. It's a great way to engage your nose in the revolution as he listened to my podcast if you WanNa buy something on the site Tyson has offered a twenty percent discount count on anything if you use the Promo Code Amriyev that's a. m. r. e. v. at checkout on the site. You can get to the the site at liberty and Dot Co.. I've also added a link to liberty and dot co on my website. Amr Have PODCAST DOT COM. Today's episode focused on France in the second half of seventeen seventy six silas deane was pretty much on his own in France with no diplomatic cla matic experience nor few other skills to succeed in his goals. Dean is one of those people you don't hear much about of course Benjamin Benjamin Franklin gets all the credit for involving France in the American 'cause when he arrives six months after Dean as we will hear in a future episode Franklin's owns fame preceded him and gave him many opportunities that Dean did not have dean also gets criticized later in the war for allegedly trying to profit it fraudulently from the arms trade that he began. I'll admit that I have not found as much detail on this topic as they would like some writers say there is some justification to these allegations but my impression so far is that these allegations were false or at the very least greatly exaggerated to move move him out of the way and allow Arthur Lee to take over the contracts. The Continental Army did hold hearings on the allegations something I'll probably address in a future sure episode but they found nothing. Unfortunately they could not completely exonerate him either since France seized most of the records of his dealings and refused to release them for fear that British would get them so no complete exoneration from Congress where we heard that before dean also drew some controversy near the end of the war after your Coun- when some of his personal letters were made public he had expressed rest concerns about whether an independent U._S. could really make it on its own and made some other rather pessimistic thoughts about the war effort he then died rather suddenly and suspiciously as he attempted to return to America again something I really want to cover in a future episode I mentioning all this now because it means that Dean never really did get the praise and adulation that many other founding fathers did his he's working. You're was always covered by a cloud of ethics accusation and much of it was kept secret. Ben Franklin got all the credit for the success of France and and Dean died before he could have any postwar political career to rehabilitate his reputation so when I went looking for a good biography on Dean there just wasn't much out there however while looking for that elusive biography I did come across this week's book recommendation. It's called called unlikely allies how a merchant a playwright and a spy save the Revolution by Joel Richard Paul. The book looks at the lives of three people the Merchant Silas team the playwright Bomar Shea and the spy the Chevalier de a young they all had stories that interacted and played a role in bringing France into the war on the side of the Patriots too young is the transgender spy that I mentioned in today's episode. The book goes into much more detail than I did about this person's life while the impact on on the revolution by this person was only indirect. The story is an interesting one and definitely worth reading the book was first published in two thousand nine nine and has over four hundred pages. The author Paul is a law professor specializing in international law a thankfully the book is not as dry hi as you might think from a law professor in fact I found it to be an easy and enjoyable read. Paul has also more recently written a book about Chief Justice Justice. John Marshall His book. Unlikely allies does a great job covering the early American diplomatic efforts in France so since S. today is all about France my online recommendation. This week is going to be the French history podcast which you can find at W._W._w.. Do the French history podcast dot com this podcast covers the very long history of France beginning actually in prehistory Gary Gerard does a great job with what looks to be a very long project at present he still going through the Roman era so it may be years before it reaches the era of the American revolution but if you're interested in French history you may want to check
ARP176 Sinking the Randolph
"Before we get to this week's episode. The american revolution podcast is starting a mailing list. This can keep you up to date on. New episodes live events and other things. And if you sign up now you'll be entered in a raffle for a free. Join or die tankard. The tankard is provided by liberty. And co it's handmade in america this twenty four ounce tankard with the famous join or die logo which is one of the many great item sold at liberty and co. The site has a wide variety of products including t shirts candles stoneware mugs glassware face coverings leather journals banners and stickers. Lots of great history themed gift ideas liberty and co owner tyson. France is a longtime supporter of this podcast. N a fellow. American revolution buff. He even donates ten percent of all of profits to the museum of the american revolution which has been hit pretty hard this year by the pandemic closures. He also offers free shipping. And you can get a twenty percent discount if you use the code. That's a. m. r. e. v. When you check out go to liberty and dot co to check out the site or use the link on my website at an podcast dot com lou. Thank you for joining the american revolution today. Episode 176 sinking the randolph. I've been neglecting the continental navy for some time. Now my last episode on the topic was episode. One thirty seven. When lambert wickes rated ships around the british isles of the north american coast. The british navy continued to dominate the seas without any serious challenge until the french navy arrived after. Its first grade. On the bahamas. In early seventeen. Seventy six the continental navy accomplished little more than rating unprotected merchant vessels carrying goods to the british army. Or maybe going after the occasional smaller navy ship when the opportunity presented itself much of the continental fleet was bottled up rhode island trapped there by the british fleet. You may recall from back in episode eighty four that commodore e sic hopkins headed the continental navy. It was his fleet. That was trapped in narragansett bay. For many months by the british fleet hopkins had come under heavy criticism for his failure to leave the bay before the british arrived and for his refusal to attempt and engagement with the british. A congress said never really gotten to like hopkins. They had censored him in seventeen. Seventy six for his failure to obey the instructions that they had given him to attack the british navy at that time. Instead hopkins had sailed off with his fleet to the bahamas. I'll never mind that the orders would have been suicide. Congress censored the commodore but then allow him to continue in his command by early. Seventeen seventy seven. Many were calling for hopkins's removal from command of the navy in february. Several of his officers referred charges against hopkins to the continental congress. The some of the charges seem rather silly. The included swearing and speaking ill of congress's maritime committee. I know it's hard to imagine a sailor who actually swears even during the revolutionary war era. It was quite common and did not. Ordinarily result in formal charges especially against a top ranking officer similarly many other officers may derogatory remarks about congress and the maritime committee and probably deservedly so so the fact that hopkins did that did not seem particularly outlandish either but congress did take these charges seriously and pursued them. Other charges were a little more serious. Such as the abuse of prisoners of war although under scrutiny. The complaints did not note a departure from the way other ship. Commanders treated prisoners at the time who were unwilling to serve aboard ship. The other major complaint was the commodores failure to recruit sailors for the fleet. It was a fact that the navy didn't have enough recruits. The biggest problem was that the states had granted letters of marque to thousands of privateer ships. Any competent sailor would earn far more on a privateer vessel and would not be subject to severe discipline so the navy was simply unable to compete for recruits in short congresswoman. A miracle worker and hawkins wasn't performing miracles in response to the charges against him. Hopkins had one of the officers who had brought charges to congress. Attention arrested lieutenant. Richard marvin faced a court martial as a result of the charges. He sent to congress in april. The court martial found marvin guilty and dishonorably discharged him from the service. Hopkins did not yet know it by the time the court martial rendered its verdict on but congress had already suspended his service. In march the continental congress began hearings while it was still in philadelphia on charges against hopkins without informing him that the procedures had begun on march twenty. Sixth congress suspended hopkins from service without giving him an opportunity to defend himself. It took several weeks for the commodore. To learn of congress's decision options had received his command probably largely due to the support of his brother. Stephen hopkins who was at the time a delegate to the continental congress stephen had left congress in september seventeen seventy six shortly after congress had censored isaq for his failure to follow congressmens truck on his first mission. The stevenson's resignation was purportedly for health reasons. He was suffering from trembling hands. What was at the time called a palsy. It's not clear though if the actions against his brother may have also been a contributing factor in his decision to resign from congress however is departure did leave. He saw without a friend in congress after congress suspended him in march. Seventeen seventy seven. One would expect that he would have traveled to philadelphia to confront these charges. Personally we don't know exactly why but he sucked opted not to do this very likely. The reason was that he did not think he would get a fair hearing before. Congress on january second seventeen seventy eight. Congress formally dismissed hopkins from service without ever granting him a hearing in person or even requesting his presence to discuss. the charges. Hopkins responded by bringing a libel suit against his accusers for defamation. The defamation trial took place later in seventeen. Seventy eight with a jury verdict for the defendants hopkins was ordered to pay costs. Even so hopkins retained his popularity locally in rhode island. he was elected to the rhode island legislature. Where he served on the state's war committee after hopkins departure. Congress did not bother to name a new commander of the continental navy instead. The maritime committee issued orders directly to ship captains or just gave them a fair amount of discretion to go do whatever they could by the time of hopkins removal from office january. Seventeen seventy eight. John adams was long gone from congress himself. He had taken leave in early november of seventeen. Seventy seven to return home to massachusetts that congressional service was pretty grueling and did not even pay enough to cover his personal expenses while he was serving after two and a years of service adams had had enough he returned home and resumed the private practice of law before he left. Congress to go home is colleagues suggested that they might need him. Do go serve in france. Silas deane was being recalled. Benjamin franklin was old and could possibly fall ill and nobody really trusted arthur lee. Adams's fellow delegates believed that they needed him to fill this important role in paris adams. Though demured he did not speak french and he was one of the least diplomatic delegates already. Serving as an ambassador to france would certainly not play to his strength after returning home. Though adams received notice that congress had appointed him anyway. He could refused the appointment. Thomas jefferson had refused the same appointment a year earlier but adams believed that his services were important to the 'cause besides his return home was hurting. his public. reputation rumors began to spread that he had been forced to leave congress. Failure to accept this position might hurt his public reputation. Further so in february seventeen seventy eight adams boarded the navy ship. Boston captain by samuel tucker adams obsta to leave his wife abigail and his young children on the farm in massachusetts congress would not pay for his family's expenses only his adams also thought that the journey would be too difficult and dangerous besides he needed abigail to continue running the family farm instead. He only took his oldest son. Ten-year-old junk quincy adams who would serve as his personal aide also aboard the ship or two other young men william vernon junior was a recent college graduate and the son of a member of the maritime committee vernon was headed to france to start a career in international trade. Joining them aboard. Ship was jesse dean. The eleven year old son of silas deane the man that adams was to replace so adams had to take responsibility for the three young men during this voyage. The boston was a pretty decently sized ship at least by continental navy standards it had thirty guns although adams thought it had too many guns for the size of the ship and adams was never shy about expressing his opinions to anyone. He peppered captain tucker with suggestions about ship discipline. Cleanliness organization and a host of other things since adams was vip tucker head to do his best to accommodate and comply with adams's many suggestions. Now adams had never even been to see before also got rather seasick for much of the journey. The ship did have to outrun a few british worships during the crossing tucker debated fighting them however his priority was to get adam safely to france therefore he avoided any combat following his trip. Captain tucker would command the boston for several more years capturing numerous prizes and doing battle with the british navy. So is avoidance of a fight on. This trip was due to his duty to his vip passenger. And not out of any desire to avoid combat. When the boston got closer to the french coast. It came across a british privateer. The martha which was a smaller. Fourteen gun ship with adams's permission. The boston captured the ship and took it as a prize. A few hours later the boston chase down another merchant ship. Although this one turned out to be french before they realized that the boston fired a warning shot which resulted in the canon. Exploding adams had to help. Carry an injured lieutenant below deck for surgery and held him down while the surgeon amputated the young officers leg despite their efforts the man died a week later as they approached the french coast. The boston came within range of two large british men of war. Everyone feared capture but the ships did not attack instead they simply salon pass them in the other direction. A few days later a local french pilot informed the men that france and britain had gone to war only four days earlier by the last week of march adams was safely assure in france. The french public welcomed adams and his party enthusiastically were had just begun and everyone was still caught up in the thrill of fighting for american liberty adams and his men were toasted and feted wherever they went. The thing that worked him most was that everyone kept confusing him with his cousin. Samuel adams adams made his way by coach to paris. In mere four days there he met up with the rest of the american commissioners at immediately got caught up in all the internal dissension between lee franklin dean and izard. And that'll probably be a topic of a future episode for now. It was enough that john adams arrived in france and made his introductions to the cop division at versailles and embarked on his new career as a diplomat. Aside from the navy ships trapped in new england and those shuttling. vip's like atoms a few ships. Were actually trying to engage the british navy. One such ship was the randolph captain by nicholas. Biddle biddle was the son of a wealthy and prominent merchant family in philadelphia at age thirteen. Biddle took a position aboard a merchant vessel and headed for the west indies. Seven years later in seventeen seventy. He took a commission in the british navy as a midshipman after three years he resigned his commission to participate in an arctic expedition. To the north pole you went along with skeffington lot which who we met in previous episodes who was a british naval officer and another junior officer by the name of horatio nelson when the war began. Biddle offered his services to pennsylvania. He took him in a small row galley on the delaware river named the franklin in december. He received one of the first commissions as a captain in the continental navy. He commanded the fourteen gun. Andrew doria which was part of the fleet. That commodore hopkins took to the bahamas. A bit all was one of the captains who criticized hopkins's command on that mission. His criticism of the commodores competence led in part to congress's censure of hopkins later that year and while hopkins then got trapped in narragansett bay. Bill remained at sea. He sailed as far north as newfoundland in search of british shipping. It has mission successful that he returned with a skeleton crew of only five sailors. The rest had been deployed as prize. Crews on all the ships that he had captured upon his successor returned to philadelphia. Congress rewarded the young captain with the command of the newly randolph. The ship was named after peyton randolph. Who served as president of the first continental congress and for a few months on the second continental congress. Although he had taken some sick leave he did return to congress and then drop dead while serving in congress in philadelphia in october. Seventeen seventy five. The randolph was a thirty two gun. Frigate with a crew of over three hundred. It was one of america's larger ships but still nothing that could compete with the british ships of the line in october. Seventeen seventy six captain nicholas. Biddle took command of the randolph. By that time the twenty six year. Old biddle had already spent half of his life at sea. Bill received his appointment in july. Seventeen seventy six a week. After congress declared independence however he did not take command of the randolph. Until mid october is first obstacle was assembling the crew for such large worship. As i said most sailors were serving aboard privateers and had no interest in joining the navy in order to fill the ship's crew. Biddle had to take on british sailors. That were being held as prisoners in philadelphia. Now these were not volunteers. The soldiers assigned to escort the new sailors to their ship. Literally had you fire their into the prison windows in order to force the reluctant recruits out of the prison and aboard ship on the maiden voyage the rand off escorted a merchant fleet out of delaware bay with ships headed for france and the west indies. Having gotten the ships to see the of sailed north in search of a british frigate that had been capturing merchant ships a while at sea. The new ship faced a number of construction problems during storm. The ships foremost broke off as the crew attempted a repair. Lightning struck the main mast causing it to splinter and fall into the ocean on top of everything else. A fever broke out among the crew killing some and leaving many more unfit for duty around this time the british sailors who had become part of the crew willingly attempted to mutiny and take control of the ship fiddle and his officers were able to restore control and arrest the ringleaders. Eventually the randolph made it to charleston south carolina on march eleventh. Seventeen seventy seven where she put in for repairs. It took two months to complete the repairs during which time this ship lost a large portion of its crew to desertion and disease. Biddle had to offer bow-ties to attract more crew members before they could leave port on sixteenth as they left the harbour the randolph. For did the fair american and took off to crew members who had previously deserted the randolph. For work aboard that merchant ship in early september the randolph spotted a twenty gun loyalist privateer called the true briton. That ship was traveling with four other ships that it had already captured. The group was on its way to new york with rum. Sugar salt and other supplies for the british army instead. Biddle captured the entire fleet and delivered the ships to charleston after that successful mission the randolph remained in charleston for most of the winter putting itself in dry dock to have its whole scraped for barnacles in february. Seventeen seventy eight. The renna formed a convoy with four smaller south carolina navy ships the general military the notre dame fair american and the polly. This fleet would attempt to confront british worships that were preventing merchants from leaving charleston. Harbor the group escorted a fleet of ships leaving the harbor but failed to find the british. After the merchant ships went on their way. The fleet continued its search for the british navy during their searches. They did come across a damage to england ship. That a british privateer was bringing to the british port at saint. Augustine fiddle ended up burning ship since they could not bring it to port and did not want to let it fall into enemy hands for more than two weeks. The fleet sailed around finding nothing on march fourth. They captured a small schooner from new york. That was headed for granada. Biddle turn that one into a tender ship for his fleet a few days later on march seventh they spotted another ship on the horizon by the time the ship caught up with them not evening they discovered it was a british ship of the line. The yarmouth with sixty four guns twice as many as the randolph also. Many of its guns were larger meaning that they would have a greater range and could do more damage before the randolph could even get into range. The experienced captain nicholas. Vincent would go onto become an admiral in the british navy captain. Biddle ordered the other ships to flee while he engaged you raised his ships colors and immediately opened fire on the arm of by at least one account the randolph managed to get four pride sides into the army while the british could only return one one of the ships that had been in the convoy. With the randolph. The eighteen gun general multi also remained to attack the army. Unfortunately the less experienced crew ended up hitting the rand off by mistake. Apparently wounding captain biddle in the leg. Biddle remained in command issuing orders from a deckchair. Despite the setback the smaller randolph seem to be getting the better of the fight knocking out one of the armistice masts and damaging her sales then about fifteen minutes into the fight. The randolph suddenly exploded. Presumably her munitions magazine was either hit or someone somehow set off a spark inside of it. The deafening explosion completely destroyed the ship and its crew. The arma was close enough to the randolph. That it actually suffered some damage from the explosion as well and reported chunks of the randolph. Some as large as six feet crashing onto it's deck. A british officer also reported that the randolph's was flagged onto their ship from the explosion. The army then set out after the smaller ships that had fled. But it was too badly damaged to give chase. The british suffered five killed and twelve wounded five days after the battle. The yarmouth came across some wreckage and took a board for survivors. As it turned out. These men were survivors. Of the randolph. Explosion the men had survived on rainwater only for several days until rescued out of the crew. of over. three hundred. Those four would turn out to be the only survivors of the randolph's explosion. Next week we return to new england to talk about the new republic of vermont. Hey thanks for joining. The american revolution podcast. After show my continued. Thanks to trae nance and george davis for their continued support at the alexander. Hamilton club level patriot on. Thanks also to matthew bomer one potter and generous donation from brenda richmond. All who made one time contributions the pay pal. I do appreciate the support. I also wanted to mention that. I recently began setting up a new feature. If you've ever looked at my blog you know that. I have a bunch of further reading at the end of each episode. These include relevant books were. I've provided links to amazon dot com. Although amazon does give me a tiny commission if you click on those links and then buy something. The main reason i started linking to amazon is that they have the largest selection of books including many older ones that you can purchase used so it was mostly out of convenience. A few listeners have expressed dissatisfaction with amazon because well they're giant conglomerate. That's running independent booksellers out of business and screwing independent authors. I certainly get that. Although i'll admit as a consumer i'm probably not going to be giving up amazon entirely anytime soon and i am going to still keep the links to amazon in my blog episode however as an option for those of you who want to support independent booksellers. I've also opened a site at bookshop dot org. If you're not familiar. This site is designed to give independent booksellers an online platform so that they can join together where they can have a combined inventory that can compete with the big guys like amazon. They offer me a commission on books. That i recommend if you purchased through my links they also give a percentage of all sales to local bookstores. So if you prefer to support local stores but still wanna buy online then bookshop dot. Org is a great resource. I've only started compiling some lists of books. Not just from my weekly recommendations. But out of all the books that i've cited on my blog for all of my episodes so this is hundreds of books to keep it manageable. I have broken down into several lists each covering a different section of the podcast. So for example i have one list for my intro episodes and for the french and indian war. I have another list for the prewar. Protests era that's as far as as of the damn recording us. But i plan to add another list for each year the war so there will be a list for all the seventeen seventy five episodes than another list for all the seventy seventy six episodes cetera. I hope this will make it easy for you to find books relevant to the air that you want if you wanna check out my sight on bookshop dot org just go to the site and search for american revolution podcast. Make sure you're searching for shops not books. You can also go directly to bookshop dot org slash shop slash. Aarp that's a for american are for revolution. P. for podcast also start adding bookshop links to my blog and my website. It will probably take a few more weeks to get everything added up to date. If you have any suggestions on how to organize it better or other books to add to the list. Please feel free to contact me so anyway this week. I tried to catch up on the continental navy which admittedly has not been a big player in the overall war effort. They went after british supply ships. Although more numerous privateers accomplish much more in this area they transferred vip's to europe and elsewhere as we saw this week with john adams traveling to france. The navy did occasionally challenged british worships. As we saw with the randolph and the yarmouth sadly in that encounter as in many it did not go well for the americans. The british navy was good at what it did and would always prove to be a tough opponent. A some of you may be familiar with the name. Biddle which was a prominent family in philadelphia for many years captain nicholas. Biddle sadly died with the loss of the randolph. The biddle family however remained prominent. They came from english quakers who settled along the delaware river even before the founding philadelphia nicklaus had a brother named edward biddle who served as a delegate to the continental congress and another brother charles. Biddle who served as vice president of the supreme pennsylvania council the equivalent of modern day lieutenant governor many of their descendants became politicians and top ranking military officers. One of the more famous of these descendants was charles's son nicholas for his deceased uncle. Who went on to become the president of the second bank of the united states and an arch-rival of president andrew jackson. So the family's definitely left its mark automatic in history. This week's episode though was about captain nicholas bethel who served in the continental navy and died fighting the british aboard the randolph. This week's book. Recommendation is captain dauntless. The story of nicholas. Biddle of the continental navy by william bell clark. I've recommended books by clark before. He wrote a really good biography on. Lambert wickes another naval hero. He's also written a biography about commodore john. Barry and another book on. Benjamin franklin's privateers clark definitely like reading about naval heroes of the american revolution. The book on biddle is a little over three hundred pages long. It was first published in nineteen forty nine although there are reprints out there that are more recent even given its age. I still think it's worth reading if you want to read more generally about the navy. My online recommendation isn't yearbook from archive dot. Org it's called a naval history of the american revolution by gardner allen. This isn't even older book from nineteen thirteen. But i think it gives a good comprehensive view of the navy during the american revolution as always you can search for it on archive dot org or use the link on my website or blog at blog dot am rev. Podcast dot com. Well that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american lucien podcast.
ARP190 French Arrive in America
"Hello thank you for joining the american revolution today. Episode one ninety. The french arrived in america weeks after the british evacuated philadelphia. The french fleet arrived in delaware bay on july. Sixth seventeen. seventy eight charles already. Hector the comtesse stang dropped anchor of his flagship. The language dot the massive ship was armed with ninety cannons and had a crew of over nine hundred sailors passengers aboard the ship included. Conrad alexandra gerard the new french minister to america as well as the returning american minister silas deane following. Dean's recall the french government had offered dean accommodation with the french fleet. Congress had demanded dean returned to philadelphia to answer questions about suspicious. financial transactions. Mostly lies propagated by fellow. Commissioner arthur lee french minister version hoped that dean's returned to america aboard the massive military french vessel along with a fleet at the side of the new french minister to america would underscore just how well the french government thought of deans diplomatic work and that it would help to impress members of congress upon arrival though the french commander stang received word that the british fleet had evacuated to new york. The british ships in new york harbor were inferior to his fleet of seventeen massive ships of war armed with over one thousand cannons and supported by nearly ten thousand sailors rather than allowing dean and gerard to make an impressive and in philadelphia aboard the french fleet. This dang dropped off his passengers at the shore in delaware bay and then set sail for new york to do battle dean and gerard had to make their way to philadelphia aboard far less impressive local transport ships despite the quiet entry. The arrival of the first foreign ambassador in the newly recaptured seat of congress was cause for celebration. The new french minister. Conrad alexandria gerard day. Raven was a lifelong diplomat. He did not come from nobility he was. The eldest son of the secretary to a french. Noble family gerard attended college and studied law at the university of strasbourg by seventeen fifty four. At the age of twenty four. he had entered diplomatic. Service is duty sent him throughout europe and introduced him too much of the political leadership on the continent. The life of a career diplomat can be delegate and tricky if not terribly exciting. Girard developed a good reputation within the diplomatic corp. His career grew along with his responsibilities. During and after the seven years war he served at the french embassy at vienna. Among his duties was ensuring proper protocol during the engagement and marriage of the austrian archduchess marie antoinette to dauphin of france the future king louis the sixteenth after louis the sixteenth ascended to the throne in seventeen seventy four. The comp virgen took over french. Foreign affairs fair. Jen appointed gerard to increasingly important positions within the ministry. The two men developed a close friendship and mutual. Trust white version entered into treaty negotiations with the american delegation. It was your art who conducted those negotiations when the time came to send a diplomatic delegation to america. Sherard received the appointment as minister. Plenty potent terry. To america with france having committed to an alliance with america and war with britain the diplomatic tables between france and america had somewhat turned for the past few years. America had been doing everything in his power to bring france into the war at the same time. France was kinda comfortable watching events from the sidelines. And taking its time to decide whether war was in its best interests once it entered the war. France became much more dependent on america to stay in the war. If britain managed to establish peace with its colonies. It could then turn. Its full wrath against france and lately capture many more french colonies. France did not want to be driven deeper into debt fighting a losing war that it could not well afford. When french officials learned that britain had repealed many of the laws that had started a rebellion in the first place and had sent a peace commission with real negotiating power to and hostilities france. Knew that it would have to make sure that the continental congress did not back out of the new treaty of alliance and leave france to face britain alone. Americans were already exhausted from fighting several years of war they had age-old social political and cultural ties to britain and a long history of posterity with france. It would not really hard to imagine. The americans accepting the generous terms offered by london and throwing their new ally under the bus gerard's mission was to submit the franco american alliance. He needed to make sure that the us remained independent and at war with britain despite sherard decades of diplomatic experience navigating the political waters of a republic required a different set of skills from those used in europe. There was no foreign sovereign nor any individual who could set policy for the united states. The continental congress was an unstable mix of state representatives. Who came and went. It was not even clear. If all of the states would adhere to the same policies and remain united a european diplomat would usually be focused on establishing some personal relations with leaders of the foreign power. There was no prior of french nobility who had intermarried with the americans in order to establish some sort of connection the. Us itself had never even received a diplomatic party before differences of language religion and customs all created potential hazards for france in making this relationship. Work despite all those potential problems. Girard arrived in america in philadelphia as i said on july twelfth. Seventeen seventy eight to find the alliance very strong. The delegates showed no interest in any peace that would return them to colonial status. Gerard found that the americans were still very much willing to fight and needed frances active support if they had any hope of keeping the war going. When the new french minister entered philadelphia congress had only just returned to the city days earlier. It was still cleaning up the mess left by the british who had left less than a month. Prior philadelphia received the new minister with great enthusiasm a committee of members of congress road out to chester to escort sherard into the city and honorary guard of continental dragoons. They honored him with a fifteen gun. Salute one for each state. Plus the king of france and the king of spain in a report written a week later gerard told version that people had cheered him from the banks of the delaware river as he made his way into. The city wants their members of congress. Paid him calls. Even before he had presented his credentials to congress they invited him to a banquet and celebrated the new alliance between france and the americans while receiving a warm welcome sherard of course had his concerns about the new alliance his traditional european view. Was that there was no way these people could cover themselves. At some point they would either return to british rule or permit the french to rule over them. Perhaps it wouldn't be a blatant colonial relationship. But the americans were going to need continuing guidance support and protection of some european power the notion of a truly independent united states that could remain neutral in european affairs simply did not seem possible to gerard. Gerard sent a series of candid reports back to france. He reported his enthusiastic. Welcome and the apparent resolve of americans to remain independent at all costs at the same time. He noted that some of congress's best delegates from its first years had left for various reasons and that their replacements were not really of the same caliber sherard also made note of the divisions between supporters of george washington and horatio gates observing that most northerners generally preferred gates while southerners backed washington. This he noted was a possible source of future. Rupture between the new union of states girard also mentioned with regret that several french officers had taken sides in this dispute. Although his report did not name names we know that general conway was a key backer of gates while general. Lafayette outspokenly supported general washington as a diplomat. This concern girardin. As he did not want france supporting one american faction over another backing the wrong faction could prematurely end the alliance throughout his tenure in america. Sharada remain focused on maintaining that alliance at all costs. He simply could not allow a pro british faction or a peace faction to seek a negotiated settlement between america and britain. Which would as i said. France to fight a dangerous and undistracted british military gerard. Had to make sure. The war in america continued even an american victory with independence at this time when against french interests during the first few months in philadelphia. The carlisle commission which i discussed a few weeks ago was still trying to negotiate an acceptable peace. One that would permit britain to focus on france. The commission itself had retreated to new york along with the british army but remained hopeful in its mission to end hostilities. Ministers gerard worked to ensure that the americans did not make any sort of settlement with the carlisle commission. He strongly advised that congress should settle for nothing less than full independence. Something he was pretty sure. Britain would not accept. Most members of congress did not need much convincing on that point. But you're had to make sure the situation didn't change. If britain won a few military victories american hopes might falter assuring. The americans of french military support to help continue the war. Effort kept american morale high and away from talk of any sort political compromise with britain beyond that gerard hope to forge a more durable political alliance between france and the united states. This proved much more frustrating. A great many americans still distrusted france. While they needed france assistance in the war. Effort france was the traditional enemy of the former british colonists. They viewed the absolute monarchy in france as worse than the constitutional monarchy of britain. Just because americans didn't want closer military alliance with france than they already had. That did not mean. They wanted to submit to britain again. Either they wanted. No political entanglements gerard however took the reluctance to form a closer political alliance with france as an indication that some fraction in congress wanted to return to a relationship with britain privately gerard viewed the american experiment in republicanism as doomed without a unifying leadership of monarch he did not see how the government could remain united. Legislators who regularly replaced office offered no consistency of policy or alliance. Gerard was confident that the american states would eventually fall under either the political control of britain or france and he wanted to make sure that it was the latter gerard would remain in philadelphia as the french minister for about fifteen months again spending that time helping to establish the new alliance and doing what he could to create more political connections between the two countries. He returned to france in october. Seventeen seventy nine for the americans. The key to the french alliance was the french military. Even before france had signed the treaties of alliance and commerce paris had been planning its own military strategy and one reason france had delayed any sort of alliance was that they had needed a few years to build up the french navy to a point where it could compete with the british navy by seventeen. Seventy eight. france had a new fleet of worships that it thought was ready to compete with the british as early as january. French leaders have been organizing a fleet under the comte de stang to send to america. Admiral d staing. Who has said brought yard to. America wasn't accomplished officer with connections to the highest offices in the french government. He had only joined the navy sixteen years earlier in seventeen. Sixty two to stanks. Father had been a lieutenant general in the french army. The wealthy and power whole family was very close to the crown to stang and the future king. Louis the sixteenth were about the same age and attended school together. They became lifelong friends at age. Nine to stang joined the army as a musketeer inch. Fluential families often help. Their young children received commissions so that they would have some seniority by the time they were actually enough to do any real military work by age. Sixteen to stang was a lieutenant that same year. He married the daughter of a french field marshall during the war of austrian succession he served as an aide to field marshal. Marie two sacks disdain did see combat during the war and was wounded in battle. By war's end he had risen to you. Colonel after the war the twenty year. Old colonel oversaw a military reform commission that the king had wanted the commission's goal was to emulate some of the successes of the prussian army during the seven years. War estaing wanted to go to serve in canada under general montcalm however his family discouraged that instead they helped him receive a promotion to general with service in india during the siege of madras in seventeen fifty eight a british attack wounded to stang and left him a prisoner as a captured. General disdain was held by british governor. George pigott brother of british general robert. Piggott who i've discussed in earlier. Episodes as was common for captured officers to stang received parole and return to france while still on parole disdain. Took up service as the captain of a privateer ship working for the french east india company. He spent nearly a year attacking british ships and outposts in india as he was returning to france. The british captured his ship and imprisoned him in london for violating. The terms of his parole eventually returned to france near the end of the war. In seventeen sixty two d staing received promotion to lieutenant general. He also took a commission as rear. Admiral in the french navy that same year. If it seems strange today that one person could hold commands in both the army and the navy. It did at that time to the king eventually had to remove him from office in the army leading to his career exclusively in the navy starting at the rank of admiral. Admiral d'estaing spent several years as governor general of the french leeward islands. In the caribbean by seventeen seventy two he was naval inspector of france living in breast and by seventeen seventy seven he was the vice. Admiral of the asian and american sees in seventeen seventy eight even before. The treaties with americans were made public to staying organized his fleet at too long in preparation for a voyage to america in april after the treaties were signed and made public. The fleet departed france. When stang led the first french fleet to america. He received pretty broad discretion to take advantage of whatever opportunities he found the general plan was to attack british ships and bases in north america during the summer and fall later in the year after hurricane season had passed to staying head orders to sell down to the west indies and look for targets among the british island colonies. There as i said the french fleet landed in delaware bay in early july where the admiral learned that the british fleet was in new york harbor and after dropping off his vip charges to stang sailed his fleet to new york to confront the british on july eleventh. Seventeen seventy eight to stanks. Fleet of twelve ships of the line and five frigates arrived just off sandy hook at the southern end of new york harbor. The remainder of admiral house fleet in the harbor found itself vastly outgunned and was in no mood for a fight house. Fleet had arrived in new york harbor. Only two weeks prior they had returned with the last the ships from the evacuation of philadelphia. As soon as admiral how arrived he received notice from general clinton that the army had just fought the battle of monmouth and then retreated to sandy hook new jersey. The navy then had you ferry the entire army and all of its baggage across the harbour to manhattan island as well as staten island and long island. They completed all that by july fifth. Only six days before the arrival of the french fleet while sailing from philadelphia to new york. Admiral how had received intelligence that a french fleet understanding was on its way to america but the british admiral did not have much more details. He did not even know if disdain was headed for philadelphia new york newport or halifax a few days before the arrival of the french fleet. How received word that. It had been spotted off the coast of virginia and then sailed up to the delaware bay how to twelve small frigates and six ships of the line in new york including his flagship. The eagle the outnumbered british scrambled to put their ships into a defensive line off of sandy hook. New jersey the army deployed fourteen hundred men with artillery at sandy hook as well. Their biggest fear was that the french would capture. Sandy hook. And then forced the fleet to withdraw. If they did that the french would have time to work. Their way over the sandbar and take new york harbor. If the french took the harbor and if the continentals continued their advance from monmouth the british might have to abandon new york entirely and escape to halifax and of course escaping overland and going through new england. Which would be no easy task. Either if escape was and british naval reinforcements did not arrive in time. General clinton might be looking at the need to surrender his army. This worst case scenario for the british of course never happened. The depth of the water over the sandbar at sandy hook would've prevented the two largest french ships. From entering the harbour at low tide the others would have had to enter one at a time and be subject to attack from scheuer and from the british ships of the line in place to oppose them. A good question you might ask here. Is well okay. You can't enter at low tide. Why not enter at high tide. The concern was that no one knew how long a battle might last. The french might find their fleet. Stuck and unable to withdraw. The risk of losing the fleet for this fight was just not worth it. The french fleet remained outside the harbor for eleven days. During that time to stang evaluated the situation in the harbor and the british defences he also conferred with general washington via messenger about other options in the end. They decided the british had a much better defensive position and that they would look for a battle elsewhere on july twenty second. The french navy hoisted sales and moved north toward newport rhode island. The potential battle for new york was averted and the british breath. A sigh relief. I'll take up the story of the attack on newport in a future episode but before we get to that next week. I'm heading back down to florida for the battle of alligator bridge. Hey thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast thanks to train. Ans- george davis and louis white. I support of this podcast at the alexander. Hamilton club level on patriotic. Thanks also to mike hager. I support at the robert morris circle level. Also appreciate the longtime support of travis ops and chip renner. Everyone who can chip in even a few dollars each month really helps to keep this whole thing going. Also thanks to. David bamford warren potter and pete without for one time contributions be pay pal. Everyone who can help cover. My costs helps keep this podcast free for everyone else who cannot also. If you haven't signed up for my mailing list. You may wanna do that. I include a link each week. That provides a list of live events related to the american revolution. Many of which are free and viewable online. A special thanks to tom. Mcandrew of the philadelphia. American revolution roundtable. Who does most of the work to assemble this list each week. If you are interested in learning more about the revolution beyond my ramblings you'll want to check out this list each week if you sign up for my mailing list. You'll get a link to that list as well as my recommended event for each week so this week we discussed two important french officials who were key to the franco american alliance. Both men would leave america within a couple of years. Conrad andrew gerard would return to france in seventeen seventy nine to be replaced by the chevrolet day. Luzerne gerard returned to france. Be because of health problems. However he went onto other diplomatic posts in europe and continued to serve in france during the first year of the french revolution. He participated at that point in the election of deputies to the estates general in seventeen eighty nine however he did continue to have health problems and died as a result in seventeen ninety at age. Sixty admiral already hector. The company estaing europe but him in seventeen eighty. He continued to battle the british in that theatre. He also remained active in french politics after the war briefly serving as commandant of the national guard of their cy after the storming of the best deal a position that he held for only one month before turning over that position to lafayette. Although day estaing supported many of the reforms espoused early in the french revolution. He also remained a close friend. Loyal supporter of king. Louis the sixteenth. As a result he was arrested. During the reign of terror and executed by guillotine allegedly just before his execution to stan quipped quote after my head falls send it to the british. They will pay a good deal for it. In other words his execution was only playing into the hands of francis enemies but all those events were many years of the future in seventeen seventy eight. France was playing the dangerous game by supporting the american revolution. They hope to use it for their advantage by going to war with britain while britain was weak and divided however part of the war effort included. Lots of talk about liberty and equality. Some leaders like fair version. Thought these ideas could be used to strengthen the french throne other idealists like lafayette seem to adopt them wholeheartedly. In the end propagation of those ideals contributed to the overthrow of king louis and his government and the execution of most of the officials who had promoted them during the american revolution. But in seventeen seventy eight. The american alliance seemed to hold great promise for king louis. Rain and for the future of the french empire meant like sherard and staying. we're far from idealists. They were trying to take advantage of world affairs for the benefit of france. If you want to read more about this week's topic then you wanna check out. This week's book recommendation. The minister from france. Conrad alexandra gerard seventeen. Twenty nine to seventeen ninety by ruth. Strong hudson this will give you a much more in depth look at the diplomatic relations of france in the years leading up to and during the american revolution. Gerard is a key player in all of that book is not terribly long just over three hundred pages but it is pretty hard to find. It came out in nineteen ninety-four apparently biographies of eighteenth century french diplomats. Don't make the bestseller list. The book is actually a self published work from a phd thesis that the author ms hudson had written decades earlier. Hudson published the work many years later after her husband died a one thousand nine hundred four when she was already a three years old. Miss hudson passed away in two thousand eight at the age of ninety seven. Buy online recommendation is another book. This one is a free. E book on archives dot org called france and the american revolution by james breck perkins. This book was published in nineteen eleven and is therefore free of copyright the author james perkins was actually a member of congress. He published three books during his lifetime. All about french history. This book was his fourth published a year after his death in one thousand nine hundred ten you can't of course search for on archive dot org or use the direct link. I've provided in the notes for this episode. Look for it. Under further reading at the bottom of the blog episode at blah dot rev podcast dot com. Well that's offer this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
ARP205 Congress Enters 1779
"Lou thank you for joining the american revolution this week episode two. Oh five the continental congress enters seventeen seventy nine over the winter of seventeen. Seventy eight seventy nine. The continental congress continued. It's difficult work of keeping the states. United and continuing the war. Many of the leading delegates had left congress for other duties. Benjamin franklin john adams were both in france as diplomats. Caesar rodney was now president of delaware. Thomas jefferson had returned to virginia where he was revising the state's statutes and would soon be elected governor john. Hancock returned to congress in the summer. Of seventeen seventy eight but after. No one seemed interested in returning him to the president's chair he left again for boston and focused more on his business. Affairs president henry lawrence however had his own issues while presiding over congress when he first took the chair in november. Seventeen seventy seven. He had to deal with the conway. Cabal congress's big accomplishment. During lawrence's presidency was the passage of the articles of confederation but a year later those articles were still going nowhere with state ratification. The other big issue on lawrence's to do list was utilizing the alliance with france to win the war. The french fleet had come to america a year earlier but again had accomplished relatively little before leaving for the west indies the departure of some of the most important delegates along with congress's failure to meet the needs of the army and it's constant demands on the states led many across the country to lose respect for congress furthering. The problem wasn't increasingly apparent. Divide between southern delegates and new englanders. There'd always been some level of distrust between the regions early in the war though. New england was really focused on getting the southern states into the war so that it went out of its way to support southern interests and also made sure to include many military leaders from the south in the new continental army since the war had left england though glue england delegates seemed to be reassert themselves and we see sectional interests once again growing and having an impact on many other issues as all. This was happening. Another public attack on congress came in december from general william thompson. You may recall thompson. Had been one of the first officers from pennsylvania to join the continental army is regiment of riflemen arrived. Only a short time. After general washington took command in seventeen. Seventy five washington was not a big fan of thompson but congress promoted him anyway to brigadier in march. Seventeen seventy six. When washington moved the main army from to new york. He sent general thompson off to quebec thompson managed to get captured only a couple of months after his promotion. The british paroled general and allowed him to return to pennsylvania condition of course that he not resume any military duties until exchanged for a british general for the next few years thompson. Sat around waiting for an exchange and waiting and waiting thompson grew increasingly frustrated and angry at the delays in september of seventeen. Seventy eight there were negotiations to exchange thompson for new jersey. Governor william franklin who had become an american prisoner in seventeen seventy six instead of going through with that exchange though congress opted to exchange franklin for delaware governor john mckinley whom the british had captured during the philadelphia campaign. General thompson. determined that delaware delegate. Thomas mckean was responsible for him. Losing out on the exchange then because the americans were still holding onto british generals from the saratoga campaign. The british army revoked general thompsons parole and ordered him to return to new york city for imprisonment. Just after thompson received word in november that he would have to return to new york. He sought out mckean at a philadelphia coffeehouse and got into a violent argument with him thompson. Called mckean a rascal and a villain with the apparent intent of getting mckean to challenge him to a duel. It was also reported. That thompson called congress a quote parcel of damned rascals. Although the exact wording in dispute delegate mckean refused to take the bait and instead reported the incident to congress mckean accused thompson of insulting congress a military general attacking the honor of the civilian leaders of the government was considered a pretty serious offense. Congress held hearings in december to determine exactly what the said thompson denied. Criticizing congress generally and insisted his remarks were against mckean in his personal capacity in the end. Congress took no action against thompson but also allowed him to return to british custody and left him there for another nearly two years. The whole incident was yet another example. Of how tenuous congress thought. Its reputation was becoming with the public. Just as the thompson hearings were winding down. Silas deane decided. It was a good time to publish his attack. On congress. i went into detail about the dean investigations back in episode one ninety three. The american diplomat to france had returned to philadelphia in june of seventeen. Seventy eight to face investigations about his activities and bringing covert french assistance to america. Dane had been the target of secret accusations from fellow. Commissioner arthur lee lose two brothers. Richard henry and francis slightly sat in congress. The lease did not have any solid evidence against team mostly because the accusations were complete. Bs so instead. They chose to drag out the hearings for over a year without resolving anything and preventing dean from returning to france. After about six months of this dean got sick of it and published an article in december. Seventeen seventy eight which called out congress and the lease in particular for his unjust recall from france and for the inability to resolve the complaints against him. This set off a series of back and forth articles between deed on the one side and the lease supported by thomas paine on the other henry. Laurens had backed the lease in this dispute. Lawrence had grown to oppose dean and believed all the accusations that the lease had made against him. Lawrence was outraged at dean's public attack on congress and move that congress for yet another committee to investigate dean over the propriety of his publication and suspend all investigation regarding dean's involvement in french assistance until the committee on the publications could issue a final report. Lawrence saw this is another way of dragging out the hearings and further punishing dean for taking the whole affair to the poet majority in congress however rejected lawrence's plan and refused to respond as body to dean's article in what appears to have been a peak of frustration at congresses in action lawrence gave a speech saying he could no longer be president of a body that refused to defend its dignity. Any offered his resignation. It's not clear if lawrence really meant to resign or whether he thought the delegates would reject his offer and reconsider his motion. To go after dean. If it really was the latter he would be disappointed outing. To lawrence's troubles was an accusation against him that he had leaked confidential information. To thomas paine touring the public disputes with dean. Congress called vote for a new president the following day at the same time settled lawrence allies attempted to reelect lawrence but they were in the minority by a vote of eight states to four. Congress elected john jay as its new president john. Jay had only arrived as a delegate to congress a few days earlier he was just shy of his thirty third birthday when he assumed the president's chair the new york delegate had grown up in a wealthy and prominent family is father had been a wealthy merchant is mother descended from a prominent dutch family. That had lived in new york. Since it became british jay had attended college and pursued a career as a lawyer began supporting the patriot cause before the war and served on a local committee of correspondence in seventeen seventy four. He was a delegate to the first continental congress in philadelphia but after that he stayed away serving in local new york provincial congress and also as a judge in new york state as i said he joined the second continental congress just a few days before lawrence offered his resignation. I'm not clear exactly why the majority delegates turned to the new guy to become president. Part of it may have been that he was perceived as a moderate and maybe hadn't made a lot of personal enemies in congress yet it may have also been that. He was a supporter of silence. Stein and that the majority wanted to show its support indirectly at least fourteen. Whatever the reasons though the continental congress now had a new president another issue on congress's agenda was in all out assault on quebec recall a year earlier. Congress had approved an assault on quebec to be led by general lafayette. But it could not come up with the men. Money ammunition and other resources needed to get the offensive underway. In that interceding year france had joined the war with the availability of french soldiers arms and equipment and with the reduction of british forces as london. Move soldiers to other parts of the empire. The americans thought they probably had a better opportunity in seventeen. Seventy nine to push britain out of canada. Lafayette became an ardent advocate of leading an invasion of quebec. He pestered both washington and congress with proposals to lead. Just such an offensive. George washington rejected the plan telling levy at that his priorities were capturing new york and newport washington also wrote to congress killing a litany of military reasons why an invasion of quebec would be a bad idea in seventeen seventy nine just as he thought it had been a bad idea in seventeen seventy eight. In addition to his more public objections washington also express private concerns to president henri. Laurens in a november fourteenth letter as to why a french-led invasion of quebec was a really bad idea. Washington looked at the outcome. If the offensive succeeded washington noted that the local quebec wa might be very happy to be under french rule again. France might use the opportunity to assert control. They're not just handover quebec to become part of the united states. While france wasn't american ally at the moment everyone knew that was primarily the result of their joint opposition to britain france was a larger and more powerful country than britain it also had an absolute monarchy. That was probably less disposed than britain towards supporting the ideals of a republic. Washington had begun his military career opposing. French claims in the ohio valley returning france to control of quebec might once against stoke those claims and lead to some future war between the us and france one way or the us would not have britain as an ally washington valued the alliance with france but at the same time he also noted that quote it is a maximum founded upon the universal experience of mankind that no nation is to be trusted farther than it is bound by its interest. French and american interests would likely deviate. If france began to build a new empire in america from its hold in quebec. Despite the current alliance washington saw a longer term benefit to a british controlled quebec. Then a french controlled quebec. Despite washington's letter congress tentatively gave support in december to retaking quebec washington found this of enough concern that he took the extreme step of leaving his army in new york and northern new jersey to ride to philadelphia and speak with members of congress personally. Washington arrived on december twenty second and would remain in philadelphia through january. We don't know exactly what washington told the committee but it was likely and elaboration both on his official military concerns as well as concerns about a french quebec that he had expressed who lawrence during the course of the talks. Congress agreed that an invasion of quebec was not feasible explanation. Time and withdrew its proposal. And i may have a little more to say on that next week because i think it is an important issue but not when i have time to get in fully today. All of this was happening under the watchful eye. French minister gerard who had been in philadelphia. Since the summer gerard did not have access to secret congressional sessions but he was following events closely shards primary responsibility in america was to make sure that the us did not reach some resolution. With britain that would leave france hanging in the war. It was still concerned by the fact that the carlo commission was still a new york trying to bring about just such a resolution congress's decision not to cooperate in an invasion of quebec only added to french fears. Girard began pressing for an expression of support for the french alliance and a guarantee that there was no consideration of a peaceful resolution and a return of british rule even under highly advantageous terms to america on january fourteenth congress complied passing a resolution unanimously. Affirming that the us would not enter into any peace with britain without francis agreement with no quebec invasion on the agenda. Lafayette requested to return home to france. Even before congress made the final decision not to take quebec levy at saw the writing on the wall. He also knew that with the war between france and britain. He should probably go home and return to duty in the french army. I late october. Seventeen seventy eight. Lafayette traveled to philadelphia to request an indefinite leave from the continental army. Congress granted the request and passed a resolution thanking the young general for his service. Lafayette departed philadelphia for new england. Planning to catch a ship from boston to take home to france. On the way to new england the general visited many prominent american leaders and enjoyed a great many stops as he made his way to boston in part to lobby important leaders for an eventual invasion of quebec. By the time he reached new york. Lafayette fell ill and was bedridden for several weeks. He would not reach boston until some time in december and would not get a ship for france until early january. Seventeen seventy nine. I'm going to pick up. Lafayette story and you are up in a couple of weeks. But before i finish up this week i want to note a few other issues that congress was dealing with the biggest problem behind. Almost all of congress problems was it never had enough. Well maybe it had too much. It was putting lots and lots of paper. Money that was becoming increasingly of value. Congress vowed itself with ever-deepening financial commitments and setting a more and more remote chance of ever being able to repay its debts. This was leading to very real. Problems representing one of america's largest creditors was french ministers. Gerard he had on his agenda. The issue of payment for all the aid that france had provided in the early years of the war. This was in part tied to the whole silas. Deane affair the core of the complaint that arthur lee had made against dean was that lee claim that france had provided covert assistance. Free of charge teen had reported that france had fronted those supplies but very much wanted to be repaid for them at some point. Lee accused dean of lying about the demand for payment and said that he was just trying to pocket all that money for himself. When dan went public with his frustration in december pain had responded publicly with the accusation. That the french aid was free. Pains claims of free assistance. Very quickly got the attention of minister gerard. Who wanted to make clear that yes. France actually did wanna be paid. He began reaching out to members of congress about getting paid for what many cash-strapped delegates still thought had been free. Assistance is sometimes think the conversation went a little like this well like when we first came in the barley never charged us for the first round. Saw like we figured you know. Beer was like complementary for the band. No no no. I just go out and take a collection from the voice. Well i tell you. I sure would appreciate it. Not surprisingly congress never really was able to find the money to pay back france. In fact congress was divided on the issue of whether they should or not they did not want to cause a break in the alliance refu- boatloads of tobacco on the other hand. The leaf action did not want to admit that the accusations made against dean were completely false and without merit in the end. Congress passed a vague resolution. Disavowing pains articles. At assuring france that america would comply with all agreements once. They had all the details at the same time. Congress's assuring france said it would pay for the early assistance. It was also asking france along with anyone else in europe to lend them even more money toward the war effort up until this time congress managed to keep the economy afloat by printing millions of paper continental dollars as i've said before these were essentially promissory notes that permitted the barrett to receive a certain amount of silver at some future point the value of the installers dependent on people believing that one congress would still exist in the future after having won the war and to that congress would come up with some way to acquire enough gold and silver to pay off those notes by the end of seventeen seventy seven. A congressional committee reported that it had put out twenty eight million dollars worth of continental dollars into circulation over the course of three years. In fact the committee was wrong. By that time they had actually put out about thirty. Six million into circulation congress had tried to make requests from states to provide them with money but the states were not very forthcoming. Congress skimped wherever it thought it could. For example not paying the soldiers and requiring the states to provide food clothing and other supplies for their soldiers in the continental congress also seemed happy to stiff people where they could such as refusing to pay debts incurred by folks such as say silas deane or benedict arnold to name just two examples of probably hundreds of men who believe that congress would never pay what it owed the dollars that congress had released in seventeen seventy five would start coming. Due for redemption in specie beginning in seventeen seventy nine. As year dawned delegates still had no way of repaying those notes future emissions of currency had no fixed redemption rate at all even so congress knew that at some point it needed to find a way to make good on its financial promises. Congress directed its european agents to obtain loans to repay gets but those loans of course just kicked the problem down the road as they would need to be repaid with interest. European creditors were also highly dubious. That congress would ever be able to pay off any loans and were reluctant to offer money at any terms instead. Congress had to double down on printing even more money in seventeen. Seventy eight admitted another sixty eight million or so in notes which almost tripled the amount of paper money out there and in seventeen seventy nine would double. That number again emitting another hundred million dollars. I'm going to get into the currency crisis. Seventeen seventy nine in a future episode. But the headline is that as more money was printed the less value it retained by the end of seventeen. Seventy eight the continental dollar was worth about twelve and a half cents. And by the end of seventeen seventy nine it would fall to about two and a half cents. Congress finally hoped to push off this whole debt. Problem onto the state's delegates passed a law ordering the states to collect a certain amount of continental currency each year in order to protect the value of the money. The idea was that the states would accept continental dollars for the payment of taxes or other debts then turnover that money for destruction and help keep the remaining dollars in circulation to maintain their value. Even if the plan worked it would take an estimated twenty years to redeem the currency but at least they had a plan in place and upcoming episode. We'll see how that works next week. Though i want to take a closer look at george washington's visit to congress. Hi thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show thanks to alexander hamilton club supporters on patriotic trae. Nance george davis lewis weight and george hunter. Thanks also to robert morris circle supporter. Kurt of art author of the book. I do no harm. Thanks also to joseph burnett and john mckenna's for one time support via pay pal or van. No i really do appreciate it. Also this week. I wanna wish a happy birthday to fan of the podcast. Rex radloff wrecks your girlfriend. Madison wishes you a happy one. So i've been solidified. My plans for a june twenty-sixth meet up in philadelphia. Anyone who cares to show up can meet at one thirty pm. In washington square at the tomb of the unknown revolutionary war soldier. This is an old town philadelphia. It's about a from independence hall. If there is bad weather we will meet in the lobby of the curtis center across the street but a hoping for good weather if interested. I'm also grabbing lunch before the meet up at the borders which is on the other side of independence hall. It's an open area worth multiple places to order food and a common seating area much like a food court that you would find in any mall so if anyone wants to grab lunch ahead of time you can meet me at the boards around noon. Then we'll head over to washington square around one thirty. The whole day is really just a casual event. Get together and talk about the revolution. It's completely free and there's really no set agenda if people are up for it and weather permits we may do a walk down chestnut street to talk about some of the historic buildings there but mostly. This is an excuse to meet up in person and to get a chance to talk. You can find more details on my website at www dot m. rev podcast dot com. And please email me. If you wanna come that way. I can keep you up to date on any last minute. Changes my email which is also at the bottom of my website is m troy dot history at yale dot com. O an addition to this june twenty-sixth meet up in philadelphia. I'm also looking at the idea of doing an online live event on july fourth. Talk about the events that led to the declaration of independence but more importantly. Since it's a live event you'll be able to ask me questions about whatever you want the revolution the podcast was beagles. Been up to lately whatever. It should be a great chance to interact. I may be joined by guest as well. I will probably be doing this on. Pod been live since pod. Being hosts my podcast. You can join via a web browser but you probably have the best experience if you download the free pod. Bean app to your phone or tablet head of time. You can download the podcast at at the app store if you're a fan of apple our at the play store if you play on team google also a reminder that history camp america is taking place on july tenth. This is an online all day event with multiple speakers on a wide range of history topics. Tickets are still available and you can get a five dollar discount by using the coupon code. Amriyev twenty twenty-one goto history camp dot org for more details this week. We looked in again on the continental congress. And it's ongoing problems as it begins. Seventeen seventy nine. Money has always been an issue for congress and it was pretty much in the war on promises of future reward and those promises were beginning to wear pretty thin as the war approached. Its fifth year related to the money. Problems was the ongoing fight over silas deane and whether he was somehow improperly profiting from his efforts to form the french alliance and get french assistance shipped to america. This would be an ongoing fight that would last for years. Actually the fight would outlive dean and would continue on with his heirs. Henry lawrence proved to be a casualty of the dean controversy with his resignation. As president of congress as i said in the main show his replacement john jay had only arrived in congress. A few weeks prior jay is not some we've heard about much in the early years of the revolution but he would become much more prominent later. He will go on to negotiate the treaty of paris. Right some of the federalist papers in support of the constitution and would serve as chief justice of the us supreme court. He also found time to negotiate. What became known as the jay treaty during president washington's administration. If you want to read more about jay my recommendation. This week is a biography. John jay founding father by walter star. It's a solid look at the life of founder who is largely overlooked. It was first published in two thousand five. The author walter star is an attorney who found a passion for writing historical biographies later in life. A my online recommendation. This week is the resignation speech of the outgoing president harry lawrence. It's pretty short less than five pages. I just think it's interesting to hear from the man himself as he tells congress why he's leaving i've included a link to the speech on archive dot org but it is available from many different sources but as always my direct link on my website is www dot am rev podcast dot com now before we get to the closing music this week. I'm trying out a new segment on the after show. Whether it becomes a regular feature i guess depends on you. I'm gonna start trying to answer questions that you the listener sent to me this week. Marquette an asks if i've ever covered finance and money in the podcast any wants to know more about how financial transactions worked any eighteenth century. I did cover the british monetary system a bit in episode twenty when we were discussing the currency act money at the time was spent she that is precious. Metals gold. Silver or copper. To have real money was to have actual coins made with these actual rare metals. The british unit of currency the pound was literally a pound of silver at one time in the colonial era overseas transactions. Were particularly difficult since transferring. Gold and silver across. The ocean was both expensive and dangerous. Typically colonists would send their goods to inland for example tobacco and they would get a credit then there merchants would send them finished items that they ordered perhaps clothing or manufactured goods and that would be deducted from their ledger so no money actually went back and forth. It was all done in writing. There were no banks in north america during the colonial era. If you had money you usually kept stored in a locked chest and hidden somewhere on your property perhaps buried in your backyard. Actual specie was hard to get in america. So many people exchanged paper notes. These were basically. I owe us pay to the bearer which promised to pay gold or silver at some future time. Some of these were produced by clue. Governments others were simply written by wealthy merchants. Who had a good reputation in the region. These notes were commonly circulated in america. But they often ran into problems. If there was doubt that the pair could actually redeem the notes for actual money that is why continental dollars which were former. These notes became so devalued during the war. People had very real doubts that congress would ever make good on its promises to redeem the notes. Congress continued to have financial problems throughout the war. It was constantly scrambling to get hard money from anyone. Who had it on a few occasions. They tried to knock over a british payroll or capture shops carrying pay. They tried to borrow from wealthy merchants and they also hit up their ally primarily france for cash again. No if france lent the money it rarely traveled across the ocean. It was spent in europe to pay for military supplies and then those supplies were transferred across the atlantic. Spain was a big holder of cash in the americas. It's minds in south and central. America provided lots of gold and silver. The spanish dollar made of silver was a common unit. In all of the americas it could be broken into eight pieces or bits which is where we get the term pieces of eight and it's also where we get the term to bits to refer to twenty five cents again because transferring gold and silver across. The ocean was expensive and difficult. Other countries like france would commonly borrow spanish silver in the americas then repay it to spain in europe with other money that they had there already. That was how france came up with the money needed to pay continental soldiers. Right before yorktown. They borrowed it from spanish officials in cuba mark. I hope that answers your question. If anyone else has a question on anything related to the revolution just send me an email. And i'll do my best to answer it in the after show you can email me at 'em troy dot history achy mail dot com and you can also find that email address on my website at www dot am rev. Podcast dot com. Well that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
Episode 136 Franklin in Paris
"Thank you for joining the American Revolution Today. Episode one thirty six Franklin in Paris when we last left France back in episode one fifteen Silas Deane was doing his best to procure arms and equipment for the continental army as well as trying to convince France to support the American cause and go to war with Britain recall that Dean had arrived in France in. May Seventeen seventy six with quite a few obstacles. In his way he had no diplomatic experience. He had never been to Europe before he did not know anyone in France and did not speak French on top of that he had prominent enemies among fellow patriots. Like Arthur Lee attacking him from the outset. He also managed to hire a British spy Edward Bancroft as his personal secretary. Despite all these setbacks Dean had managed to establish communications with the French Foreign Minister Charles Crabbe comp diversion with the tacit support of Virginian. Dean had established a relationship with a shell. Company CAU- Rodriguez Horta Lesin company run by playwright and international arms dealer Pierre Augustine Koran. Dave Boehmer Shea. The men had managed to fill shiploads of supplies for America however the British Embassy in France headed by David Murray also known as Lord Stormont manage to get the French government to seize. Most of those supplies France was still not completely on board with backing the Patriots. At least not openly even after learning of the Declaration of Independence France did not WANNA start another war with Britain open support of the United States as an independent nation. What most certainly precipitate such a war support for the American cause however was growing inside France in addition to the possibly worthless paper money dean was using in France. His other useful currency was his self appointed power to hand out commissions in the continental army. French officers seeking combat. Experience would go to America as generals or other ranks higher than they held in the French army. Many officers jumped at this opportunity by late. Seventeen seventy six. Congress had voted to sending a little more help. It appointed Arthur Lee and Benjamin Franklin as Co Commissioners. Both men arrived in Paris near the end of seventeen. Seventy six as I've mentioned in earlier episodes. The trio did not get along particularly well specifically lead. Did Not like Franklin or Dean and the feeling seemed mutual Lee had worked with Franklin when the two men were both colonial agents in London before the War Lee was extremely dismissive of Franklin's diplomatic skills and thought he would be a disaster even worse Lee Attack Teens. Covert aid setup claiming that the French government was giving assistance to the Americans at no cost. Deans Trading Company had made arrangements to ships flies to America in exchange for tobacco and other raw materials. Lee indicated that Dean was going to skim those raw materials shipped to France for his personal profit. Taking advantage of the secretive nature of these transactions. Lee New his accusations were false. He had personally helped. Set up the terms with Bomar shy and was just upset that he had been cut out of getting commissions himself. His attack seemed to be a way to get dean sent home under a cloud of questions while Congress investigations to get to the truth. Lee could take over as the key American in charge of French. Arms shipments joining Dean Franklin and Lee the three commissioners in Paris was a fourth man. Ralph Izard of South Carolina. Izard had been living in London for several years before leaving in seventeen. Seventy six as an outspoken patriot. He no longer felt welcome there. He moved to Paris planning to return to South Carolina before he could return. Congress appointed him commissioner to Tuscany in early. Seventeen seventy seven. Tuscany is part of Modern Day. Italy the Grand Duke of Florence. Who Ruled Tuscany? Refuse to admit Izard as an ambassador for fear it would harm. His relationship with Britain is spent the next couple of years living in Paris corresponding from there with Tuscan officials. Un-diplomatic MATTERS IZARD and Commissioner Arthur. League did seem to get along. Although Lee also convinced izard that Franklin was not competent so izard and Franklin did not get along at all either. It seems that izard thought that Franklin should consult with him and keep him more in the loop then Franklin cared to do the two would continue their ongoing feud in Paris until izard was recalled. A few years later in seventeen seventy nine Benjamin Franklin of course was the Rockstar of this delegation. He had hoped to stay out of the public notice until he had a chance to get a better idea of whether the French court would receive him. As a minister he landed on the French coast at a small. Coastal village called al-raei with his two grandsons William Temple Franklin and Benjamin Franklin Becky. Despite landing in an inconspicuous port aboard a local fishing vessel. The French people mobbed Franklin and greeted him with enthusiasm by the time he reached Nancy as a few days later. The city had arranged a grand ball in his honour. Franklin's reputation had preceded him he may have been the most well known person in France from North America. Many of his writings and accounts of his inventions and scientific experiments had preceded him Frenchmen and women strain to meet the scientist and philosopher who was raised in the American wilderness locals began producing images of Franklin for sale. It became fashionable for people to have portraits on their walls. His image appeared on coins. Signet rings and snuff boxes. If bobbleheads had been invented there definitely would have been a Franklin bobblehead reprints have many of his older books translated into French of course flowed into bookstores all over the country despite his speaking almost no French Franklin had little trouble with inclusion in French society he played into his man of the Wilderness. Persona by wearing simple homespun clothing inequality or style in fashion obsessed Paris. Where more complex was always better. This was almost shocking. Franklin also refused to wear a wig when outdoors or when meeting with others. This was the fashion equivalent today of not wearing a shirt. It wouldn't exactly get you arrested. But it was seen as rather shocking for anyone other than the lowest of classes but these distinctions only played into the mythos and made Franklin even more popular. This was a deliberate strategy. Franklin knew full well what to wear when he had visited Paris in seventeen sixty seven. He had purchased a WIG and clothing to fit in with society on this trip dressed as the plane. American Franklin stood out and turned heads with his non-conforming style after his stay in Nana's Franklin made his way onto Paris with all the accolades along the way it took him weeks to get to the city although he got attention Franklin did not speak publicly about his purpose in coming to France is secretive nature only led to more speculation British Ambassador Lord. Stormont spread the story that he was fleeing America with his two grandsons before the rebellion collapsed while French society greeted Franklin warmly. The government was less enthusiastic. Foreign Minister version ordered the arrest of anyone who suggested Franklin's arrival presaged a treaty between France and America for Jan was desperately trying to avoid triggering a war with Britain. France simply could not afford a war and was not ready for one to begin for Jan did hold a discreet meeting with Franklin undescended twenty eighth seventeen seventy six weeks after his arrival. Silas Deane introduced Franklin and also attended as did Arthur Lee at that meeting Franklin outlined his agenda which included not only more French military aid but a treaty that would bring France into the war on America side at this time in late December France had received word that the British had attacked and Occupied York and New Jersey with no effective resistance. The continental army seemed to be falling apart. And the American rebellion might come to an end at any day. Although Washington's successful attack on Trenton had just taken place word of that feet would not reach France for at least another month in light of all. This version was non committal to anything and urge Franklin to keep a lower profile Franklin realized that patients would be required however keeping a low profile was not part of his plan Franklin borrowed and state at Pasay a few miles outside of Paris actually today. It's a neighborhood in Paris. But in seventeen seventy six it was part of the country side outside of Paris between Paris and Versailles the owner of the home jock donation. Laret Day chaumont was a prominent aristocrat. Who was a big supporter of the American? 'cause he served the king in several important positions and was one of the wealthiest men in France in addition to owning several shipping companies. He built several factories. For making glassware and other products among the products were portrait medallions made for European royalty. And of course his works pumped out a great many. Franklin medallions after his arrival. Despite his wealth and status Chaumont was an idealist who supported the Patriot cause in America is home in the Lower Valley was more of a palace you can still visit the Chateau Day Shimon today. I have a picture of it on my blog. He kept the house in Pasay. As a place to stay near the court ever Si- though it was more than just a cottage it was a grand mansion with a main house and two wings there were several outbuildings and gardens a large domestic staff tended to the estate Chamo- allowed Franklin the use of the past the estate rent free along with food and use of the staff. Franklin was living like a French nobleman although he eventually began paying rent Franklin would live there for nearly a decade Franklin continued to wear simple commoner clothing and hairstyle but there was nothing common about the way he lived in France. Franklin sent one of his grandsons. Benjamin Baqi Age seven to a nearby boarding school. He would visit his grandfather once a week back. He was the son of Franklin's daughter. Sally Franklin's other grandson William Temple. Franklin was the sixteen year old son of Ben. Franklin's only son William Franklin the former Royal Governor of New Jersey Edit the time a prisoner of the Patriots in Connecticut Temple as he was known would live with his grandfather and assist with his duties as part of the American delegation to the court of King Louis as Franklin settled in. He added one of his lightning rods to the home. He also quickly established his own wine cellar with more than one thousand bottles. Franklin entertained all the time is fame was enough to draw French elites to his gatherings. Show Mansue F- often served as hostess at many of Franklin's parties. You might think that Chaumont will be nervous with his wife spending so much time with Franklin who has a well earned reputation for womanizing instead. He quickly realized that Franklin was going after his daughter who was in her early twenties at the time the family stepped up efforts to marry her off to a marquee so that she would not be a temptation to Mr. Franklin showman himself continued as a booster of Franklin and the American Revolution as I said he made medallions of Franklin and also hired an artist to paint his portrait chaumont would invest part of his personal fortune in the purchase of military supplies to be shipped to America. He also became an important political advocate for the American cause with the King Schumann supported the ideology of the American revolution but he also hoped to profit from the arms trade and perhaps be rewarded with land in America. Should the revolution succeed? Sadly for Chaumont this would not be the case. He would end up losing a fair amount of his fortune which the Americans never repaid during the French revolution. The would cease his lands and France. Although he managed to survive the reign of terror he would die in relative obscurity in France. Nato three and just so we don't end that point onto sadder note Chaumont son. James Larae did move to America after the revolution married a Jersey girl and settled in upstate. New York anyway. After Franklin's first meeting with version. He realized that he would need to be more patient. And not push the foreign minister too far too fast. Franklin held salons with Francis intellectual elite not for political lobbying but simply to use his celebrity status to develop friendships with important members of the French establishment Franklin went beyond social settings to excite the French public. The former printer and publisher fell into old habits. After purchasing a small printing press he produced pamphlets for distribution to opinion leaders and newspaper editors some were French translations of important documents such as the Declaration of Independence or the Pennsylvania Constitution. He was stoking public opinion. About the idea of liberty he also revived an old habit of writing articles anonymously or under false names to affect public opinion. One article claim to be from the king of Prussia. Britain had agreed to pay for any Hessian mercenaries who were killed in the war. But not for those who were wounded. Franklin's article pretended that the government recommended letting wounded soldiers die rather than setting them. Home as cripples is just one example of many stories that Franklin put out there to turn public opinion against Britain and toward the American. 'cause this strategy however confused the ministry version commented. I really do not know what Franklin has come to do here. At the beginning we thought he had all sorts of projects but all of a sudden he has shut himself up in a sanctuary with the philosophical. Franklin of course was playing the long game he knew that virgin was focused on the political realities of trying to weaken Britain while avoiding direct war but Franklin also knew the power of a publicly popular. 'cause with the nation's elite public support for the cause of America would help the ministry get on board with helping with the cause of liberty and coming to the assistance of the young United States. Public Relations was every bit a part of Franklin strategy along with actual diplomacy Franklin also began an ongoing competition with British ambassador. Lord Stormont the British official in France often had the advantage over Franklin and the American delegation among the many British spies in the American delegation Edward Bancroft was sending weekly reports outlining. Not only what? The Americans were doing but their strategies for future activities as well when it suited his purposes. Stormont would often make these strategies public in an attempt to discredit or prevent them from happening. Some were simply made up stories like Franklin supposed attempt to build some super weapon using electricity. Once when asked about one of store bonds pronouncements Franklin retorted. It is not a truth it is only a store montor which was a play on the French word. Men Tear which meant to Li- The words store Montor soon entered the public lexicon as a turn for something that wasn't true. Franklin followed Silas Deane's lead of passing out commissions to European officers who wanted to serve in America as I've mentioned before it was rather common for officers to serve in the armies of other countries during peacetime it gave them experience and sometimes helped to improve relations between armies of common allies. I mentioned in earlier episodes that Dean had already provided a major general's commission to a teenage captained known as the Marquee Lafayette by the time of Franklin's arrival Lafayette had not yet left for America and had the opportunity to meet with Franklin but Lafayette was only one of many over his first few months in Paris. Franklin like the other commissioners was swamped by men seeking commissions. Franklin had to reject most office seekers for some he would give them a form letter saying that they were free to travel to America at their own expense and make their case there but that he did not know enough to recommend them to Congress for others he might make an offer. One of those people was a down those luck. Baron by the name of Von Steuben he had served in the Prussian army during the seven years. War as a captain he had been at the headquarters of Frederick the great but never came to any providence nor could he rise in rank at the end of the war. He was discharged for known reasons. Some have speculated that it was for homosexual activity though. I've never seen any primary evidence to support this. Whatever the reason he was not able to get a position with any army in Europe as he fell deeper into debt he got word of opportunities to fight in America and went to see Mr Franklin. Whatever he said at the meeting clearly impressed Franklin Prussian Military Strategy and discipline was considered the finest in Europe. Franklin was convinced that von Steuben was the man to whip the continental army into shape. It's not clear if fench toibin puffed up his own resume or whether Franklin did it for him but suddenly in Franklin's letter of recommendation the former captain who worked in the Prussian Army headquarters became a lieutenant general who served as adjutant to Frederick the great Washington in Congress relied on this letter to make fun story been the Continental Army's adjutant general. Besides toibin and a bevy of French officers. Many others from around Europe came looking for commissions CASIMIR. Pulaski was a Polish noble and Cavalryman. In seventeen seventy two. He participated in the attempted kidnapping of the Polish King. Who was planning to sell out. The Polish Confederation to Russia after the confederation collapsed and Poland was partitioned among the European powers. Polaski found himself on the run. Dodging charges of attempted regicide. Something the kings of most countries took rather seriously finding his way to Franklin Polaski also received a letter of recommendation and boarded a ship for America for the next nine or ten months. Franklin made effort to push the French government into doing much more than they already were he and the other commissioners spent most of their time winning over the French people seeing just how much they could get away with in shipping covert military Adams to America and waiting for events to unfold in such a way as to make a true alliance between France at America possible next week. I want to take a look at a naval commander. Who was the first to bring the war to Britain's shores is name was Lambert wickes? Hi thanks for joining the American Revolution. Podcast after show a special. Thanks today to train. Ans- as a Robert Moore circle supporter on Patriot. On trae is a big fan of the show and a stepped up to help support it so that. I can continue to cover my costs of producing this show each week. I really appreciate his support and everyone who kicks in a monthly contribution on patron dot COM for as little as two dollars a month. You can help to support this podcast and every little bit really does help this week. Benjamin Franklin finally made it to Paris where his diplomatic skill would eventually helped seal the French. American alliance is use of celebrity wit humor personality and even a little disinformation all contributed to his success in winning over the French government and people. His story is better known than those of the other commissioners in France because he was such a larger than life character. Both at the time to the people of France as well as today. A much of Franklin's early work in France is less well documented than his later years because one of his greatest chroniclers was John Adams who would arrive in France in early. Seventeen seventy eight and work with Franklin in building the French alliance although we will see in future episodes that Franklin and Adams did not get along particularly well either. Franklin's work in France is critical to the outcome of the war and is sometimes overlooked by historians. Who Don't pay attention to the European nations while covering the Revolutionary War itself in America. Franklin of course is fascinating on many levels for his inventions. Scientific experiments is years of developing a host of institutions in Philadelphia and elsewhere and his role in so many other events in the founding of this country. If you're looking for a good overall biography of Benjamin Franklin Walter Isaacson Fairly recent. Biography does a pretty decent job but that is not my recommendation. This week I'm recommending a great improvisation Franklin France and the birth of America by Stacy Schiff of the reason. I like this book. Is that it focuses. Just on Franklin's years in France not his whole life it digs into court life and European politics in a way that many other Franklin biographies do not. There are a few other books that also focus on. Franklin's time just in France and I mentioned a number of these in my blog post notes for this week's episode but most of those books are decades old the author of a great improvisation. Ms Schiff has won multiple awards for her many books. However I'll admit that some have criticized her writing style as ponderous rambling and difficult. Her style is a little less than straightforward and. She seems to like telling the story in her own way rather than a simple recitation of the facts. But I still think it's an interesting read and worthwhile if you can keep from getting frustrated at the complexity of her writing style. The main content of the book is about four hundred pages with another hunter pages of notes Appendix and index and it was first published in two thousand five. It's also available as an audio book if you prefer to listen so if you WANNA dig into Franklin's years in Paris checkout a great improvisation also today I wanNA revisit an issue from last week some listeners. Were concerned that I did not even mention Sybil leading ten. When talking about the Danbury raid letting ten was a teenage girl during the raid her father Colonel Henry leading ten was a New York militia officer whose regiment responded to the British raid on Danbury Sybil letting ten is credited with a forty mile night ride to rouse the militia in New York and Connecticut. She wrote all the way to Danbury to warn the residents there that the British were on the way. There are even a bunch of memes on the Internet comparing her to Paul Revere because she wrote twice as far and did not get caught. Now I don't think. The revere comparisons are particularly fair since revere did far more for the cause than one night's ride I also think lettings role is sometimes over hyped in the desperate search for more female heroes of the revolutionary war letting in however did play a key role in alerting the region to the raid and she probably deserved at least a mention in getting till the battle details. In last week's episode I do regret her omission. However if you want to hear more about civil leading ten the history chicks podcast did a mini episode just on her ride so my online recommendation. This week is the history chicks podcast episode on civil letting ten. If you go to the history chicks dot com and search for letting ten you can find the episode. It's a short one only a few minutes long or you can use my direct link on my website at Amriyev. Podcast DOT com well. That's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another American Revolution podcast.
Episode 131 Congress - Baltimore Edition
"Thank you for joining the American Revolution Today. Episode One thirty one the Continental Congress Baltimore Edition over the last few weeks. We've covered some of the most pivotal events of the revolution. The massive British army under general. How invaded New York? A New Jersey sending the continental army fleeing before it the continental army than counter to retake Jersey. And last week we looked at events. Events in the south over the same period as Tories in Florida with their creek and seminole allies seemed to have no trouble pushing into patriot. Control troll Georgia. Today I WanNa talk about what the Continental Congress was doing as all these events unfolded as the British army push toward Philadelphia in December. Seventeen seventy six. The continental army was not able to mount much of any defense. Many on both sides assume that the British would take Philadelphia before ending the years offensive members of Congress not eager to become prisoners. War decided to leave Philadelphia Philadelphia on December twelfth. The Congress voted to adjourn and reconvene in Baltimore Maryland. The following week in in Baltimore locals. I offered Congress the courthouse but it was too small instead. Congress rented the Henry Fight House which actually was a hotel and tavern on the western edge of town. The three story fourteen room brick building had several rooms large enough for committee meetings at the time it was the largest building in Baltimore. Congress rented the building from fight for three months. For sixty pounds sterling overall members. Were not happy with Baltimore. It was not the charming city that exists today as one member put it. The town was exceedingly expensive and exceedingly dirty. That at times members could make their way to the Assembly Hall only on horseback through the deep mud in his diary John Adams called it the dirtiest place in the world there was also a hundred and seven year. Wait for Orioles. Tickets tickets putting aside the conditions in Baltimore. Congress got to work remember. Mid December was the low point of the Patriot movement. Everyone expected the British to take Philadelphia. The continental army might be captured in the process. And if not officers and soldiers jurors were already deserting what they saw as a lost cause congress had been reluctant to turn over much power to General Washington and the rest of the military Terry leadership for fear of losing civilian control of the army since there was no executive branch. Congress itself had to act as a department department of war trying to run everything through committees with the current chaos of events. Congress voted on December twenty seventh give General Washington special powers for six months to raise his own army from the states. Appoint officers and take appropriate. Action against uncooperative cooperative civilians. This was the day after Washington's victory at Trenton. But the timing was purely coincidental. It's not clear whether word of the victory had even reached Congress by the time of the vote. The matter had been under debate for several days prior so this was not about handing how power to a victorious general it was about Congress effectively admitting that it was not capable of making the necessary executive decisions that had to remade decisively and quickly by a commander in chief Congress placed a six month time limit on the powers to make sure that Washington did not become a a dictator with the army on the verge of collapse and the only serious replacement for Washington. General Charles Lee now a British prisoner Congress decided it had to go all in depending on Washington to run the army as best saw fit. Congress expressed concern about some recent prisoners as as well it directed Washington to investigate and protests General House treatment of Richard Stockton whose capture I discussed back in episode one. Eighteen treatment of captured member of the Continental Congress was an issue near and dear to the hearts of the rest of the members. Congress Congress also denounced British treatment of Charles Lee when initially captured. There were rumors that Li was going to be shipped back to England and hanged as a deserter or Trader Congress affirmed Washington's position that if the British hanged in American general the Americans would hang a British officer of the same name rank by the time Congress passed this resolution though the British were already treating Lee quite well. They allowed Lee to send for his dogs and in his servants General How met personally with Lee during this time. How eventually got lead to send a letter to Congress asking them to send a the delegation to New York to discuss peace terms by mid February though it appeared that the Americans were back on the offensive and Congress rejected acted Lee's proposal? Congress was not ready to consider any peace proposal if Britain did not recognize American independence and that position required quired military victory. Washington's minor victories in New Jersey had been a huge boost for morale but they did not really change the thinking on either her side. That Britain would eventually crush the rebellion. Unless the American psyche get a few more countries involved. I mentioned back in episode one fifteen fifteen that Congress had appointed Benjamin Franklin and Arthur Lee to work as commissioner along with Silas Deane in France. They needed to pull France into the war with Britain. Congress however did not want to rely on France alone. Franklin had only arrived in France in late December before Franklin could do much of anything let alone get any reports back to Congress. The delegates added to Franklin's duties by appointing him to serve as a commissioner to the court of Spain. Both France and Spain had lost colonies to Britain during the seven years war. Congress hope that both both countries find this an opportune time to reclaim lost. Real Estate. While Britain was tied up with America entry of any other a European power into the war against Britain would force London to spread its resources more thinly and give America a better chance of holding onto onto its independence. I'm going to get into Franklin's exploits in Paris in a future episode but for now I WANNA point out that Congress this was already expanding his role and attempting to get whatever European powers into a war. That would improve American odds of winning Congress. Also so was not convinced that anyone could convince France to start a new war with Britain if they could not get France into the war congress at least hope to receive leave more covert assistance in the form of munitions and other supplies needed to help with the war effort as if there was not enough going on political leaders. In the New Hampshire grants met any convention in the town of Westminster they drafted their own declaration of independence calling align themselves the Republic of new Connecticut a few months later they would change the name to Vermont. The declaration was especially controversial because New York still considered this territory to be part of New York anxious not to annoy the New York delegation. Congress opted to ignore Noor this declaration entirely not approving or criticizing it it would not receive a delegation from the self-proclaimed Republic nor or do anything else to recognize it status. The people of Vermont would have to wait more than a decade to get any recognition for this reason. I'm Moley mentioning this in passing for now I will talk more about the politics of Vermont. Independence in a future episode. A much more immediate problem for Congress was money. Congress had been pumping out millions of dollars in paper money which were essentially promises that the bearer someday would receive Steve Hard currency but especially when it looked like the British might win. No one wanted to accept the continental currency. Since a British victory meant there would be nobody around to make good on that paper even when the Americans look like they had a chance. Victory though continental paper continually tenuously suffered from hyperinflation. Congress had no plan in place to receive any hard money that is golden silver to pay off the paper. Ver- states would not give power to collect taxes it could only get anything from the states if the states unanimously agreed to such Japan and Congress never seen capable of getting them to do that on January. Fourteenth Congress passed some recommendations for states to come them up with tax money but for a people fighting war over a foreign government trying to collect taxes from the states. There was a strong inclination nation for many states to oppose this anyone ever getting anything of value in exchange for their paper currency continued to look like quite a gamble. Congress only response to this was to order people to accept the money at face value in exchange for their goods. The the only time this really worked was when soldiers pointed their guns at merchants and ordered them to turn over their goods in exchange for paper or go to jail as a result. Few people were willing to supply the government with much of anything during this session. Congress approved barring another thirteen million dollars. There's through the sale of loan certificates it increase the interest rates from four percent to six percent but even with these changes. The risks were too two high for most speculators. In December and January New England leaders met at a conference in Providence Rhode Island to discuss plus the growing problems of government credit and currency acceptance. Although over in Britain Adam Smith had just published his new book the the wealth of Nations. No one in America seemed interested in the invisible hand of the market. Instead delegates recommended the establishment of mandatory reprises range of commonly needed goods and forcing merchants to accept paper money at those prices the continental Congress endorsed I the New England conferences recommendations and also recommended that the middle and southern states hold similar conferences. This of course only continued continued to devalue the continental dollar and created even more economic chaos across the continent but to be fair Congress really had had no choice it had no power to raise money through taxes and little chance of obtaining that power in the foreseeable future states would not come come up with the necessary funds to prosecute the war as a result. Delegates saw no option other than to continue to print paper money and force people to accept it in exchange for goods and services so in addition to building a diplomatic core and creating a new economic system out of nothing congress also spent considerable time running military affairs although they had just given Washington a great deal of authority over such things. Congress Congress could not help but metal in disputes. That came to its attention. Congress had appointed Jon Morgan as physician in Chief of the army back in October. Tober seventeen seventy five. This was right after it removed. Benjamin Church on suspicion of espionage. Dr Morgan had been a quaker physician in Philadelphia before the war but had served in the French and Indian war and left his quaker upbringing behind many years before the revolution started he became a committed patriot and by most accounts served reasonably well as physician in chief for well over a year. The big complaint against him was that that he was unable to make medical supplies available to regimental surgeons but the problem there was not administrative competence. It was that the continental army army had no supplies and no money to buy them. Dr William Shippen also from Philadelphia and doctor Samuel Stringer of Albany. Vigny both tried to undermine Morgan and have him replaced. In the fall of seventeen. Seventy six congress had decided to divide medical Michael Authority Liberty Morgan's authority to New England and giving shipping administrative control over the mid Atlantic region where the continental army army was now. Centred stringer was put in charge of the northern army medical staff and he simply refused to obey any of Morgan's orders. Morgan visited Congress in an attempt to figure out why they had done this but could not get a hearing. Finally in January seventeen seventy seven congress decided it had had enough without consulting Washington and without any hearings. Congress simply dismissed Morgan and stringer from the army and put ship in charge of everything Morgan unhappy with his dismissal and unable to get a hearing published a book over two Hundred Pages Long Trying to vindicate himself and his reputation. And if you're interested in reading the details of this crisis by reading that full book it is available as a free e book and there's a link to it on my blog at blog dot an REF podcast dot com. Dr Morgan made it a goal in life to take down shipping in late. Seventeen seventy eight Morgan. Working with Dr Benjamin Rush who was also a member of Congress and also a Philadelphia physician. Russian had ship and brought up on charges of fraud and speculation among other things the accused ship in of speculating in the sale of goods needed. Aided by the wounded and personally profiting from their sale ship been avoided conviction by one vote and continued to serve until he resigned signed in seventeen. Eighty one congress later exonerated Morgan of any wrongdoing but it also did not reinstate him. His Army career rear was over for good. Congress also made another important medical decision during this session. It recommended that all continental soldiers. There's receive smallpox inoculations now. This was a controversial decision. A safe vaccination for smallpox would not be discovered covered until many years after the war. The inoculation as it existed at this time often left the soldiers sick with a mild version of smallpox Fox for several months rendering them incapable of fighting or marching then actually also killed a very small percentage of those inoculated for these reasons. Washington had at one point band inoculations and even jailed some private doctors who were inoculating soldiers at at the same time though smallpox could ravage armies. It had killed thousands of soldiers especially in the Northern Army during the Quebec campaign where I really think it was decisive in the failure to secure Canada for the Patriots smallpox had already claimed the life of Major General John. Thomas as well as the Ariz First Foreign General Frederick Ville Him Baron Vaughn Wuttke both of whom had succumbed to the disease months earlier Adams cold smallpox ten times more terrible than the Britons Canadians and Indians together. The the decision to inoculate soldiers with which Washington had also come to agree would end up saving thousands of desperately needed soldiers lives Congress. Congress also created a commissary general of American prisoners whose job would be to provide necessities for the American. POW's that the British were holding living in New York. As I mentioned back in episode one twenty nine the thousands of prisoners who were mostly captured in the New York campaign and surrender at Fort Washington. Ashington were literally starving to death aboard prison. Ships and imprisons after Congress approved the petition Washington appointed Elias Booed who'd not to serve as commissary general and I will discuss his activities in more detail in a future episode. Congress also took the opportunity to use this session to appoint generals as I said. Congress had granted Washington Authority to commission field officers but Congress retained aimed for itself the Authority to Commission New General Officers early in the session it appointed Henry Knox as the new general and Chief of Artillery Hillary. It also appointed Francis Nash General to assist with the Organization and Defense of the Carolinas toward the end of the session. Congress decided to make some larger promotion decisions on February nineteenth. It promoted five men to Major General William Alexander Zander. Also known as Lord Sterling Thomas Mifflin Arthur Sinclair Adam. Stephen and Benjamin Lincoln two days later it promoted nine others to Brigadier General. Now all promotions can be controversial in the sense of who gets it. Who doesn't but these appointments appointments had a particular impact? On one man Benedict Arnold General Arnold had seniority over all five of the appointees not to Major General Arnold was already ticked that he had not received promotion in an earlier round back in August. Seventeen seventy six but at least in that round all those who did get promoted were senior to him. Even if their service was not particularly distinguished. Arnold who had almost single-handedly held off the British invasion from Canada. That fall and who is one of the most senior Brigadier Generals in service seemed lock for promotion in this round when you get passed over for officers with less seniority. That's usually taken that. The leadership does not respect back to you and that you should probably resign Arnold wrote to Washington enquiring about this and indicated that he was probably going to resign he only held off because Washington said there must have been some mistake and that he should wait until Washington could make inquiries into what had happened as it turned out there was no mistake. Congress had considered and rejected Arnold. The main reason given was that Congress already had two major general's from Connecticut and before this no state had three major generals of course. It didn't seem to bother anyone. That Virginia got his his third Major General in this round. In addition to the commander in chief General. Adam Stephen of Virginia who just got bumped up was particularly undistinguished and someone who general Washington despised. The reality was that despite Arles impressive fighting record he did not have friends friends in Congress to advocate for him the members knew he had a record of fighting with his superiors and with the officers under his command. Arnold wrote out several resignations but ended up remaining at his post mostly because Washington pleaded with him to do so and promised to work things out. Arnold wrote back to Washington to say that he could interpret this action in no way other than Congress had lost faith in him as a leader and that it was politely asking Arnold to resign. The only thing that kept him from doing so immediately was that he expected Congress to send another leader to take over his command and his desire to go to Philadelphia and seek a court martial prior to resigning with that he would have the opportunity to hear the criticisms against is Tim and defend his reputation before he submitted his resignation. This dispute would linger for a few months. But in May following Arnold's noted oded leadership at the Danbury raid which I will discuss in a future episode. Congress did finally decide to give him the promotion however going from the most Senior Brigadier General to the most junior major general met that the promotion changed nothing in terms of who could give him orders and who he could order order the same five men who had been promoted over him were still his senior year as major generals. So Arnold's grudge against Congress for being denied tide. Proper respect for his services would continue even after he was promoted to major general by the end of February. Delegates decided the continental Army's counter-offensive in New Jersey at made Philadelphia apparently secure for the time being on February twenty seventh. The delegates delegates adjourned their Baltimore Session and agreed to resume work in Philadelphia on March fifth. Freeing the Baltimore session to an end. Next week I will look at how the British military and political leadership debated strategic war plans and prepared for the seventeen seventy seven and fighting season. Hi thanks for joining the American Revolution. podcast after show this week. I want to say thank you to Mike Hager. As a member of the shows Robert Morris Circle on Patriae on this is the highest level. I have set up on patron and I very very much appreciate the generosity of folks like Mike who helped cover the cost of producing the show each week. It's a great help to keep us moving forward this week. We covered the time that Congress spent in Baltimore in late. Seventeen seventy six and early seventeen seventy seven when they feared the British might capture Philadelphia although the British did not take Philadelphia. At this time. Congress did prove that it could continue to operate regardless of what cities the British might be able to capture. The Baltimore session was a fairly productive. One Congress turned out a great many generals in this session and optimistic. Mystic Congress had authorized General Washington to enlist seventy five thousand soldiers in his army of that never came close to happening. The continental army never never had more than fifty thousand soldiers at one time and even those numbers were later in the war. You may have seen statistics in places that the army wants reached eighty eighty thousand soldiers but that number is combining continental forces as well as state and militia forces. And even that combined estimate. Seems Rather Hi Timmy. In any event to plan for this much larger army that Congress hoped for they began promoting generals to command the army but when the large army she did not manifest. They really had more generals than they knew what to do with in. This problem was only exacerbated a few months later when they started getting shiploads loads of French officers whom Silas Deane the agent France had promised could become generals in the continental army. I'll talk about that issue in a future episode but the excess of generals did become a real problem now the nine men who received promotion to brigadier general in in February seventeen seventy seven ever made it past that to major general in fact no American officer got promoted to Major General for the remainder the war unless he was already a brigadier by the end of seventeen. Seventy six of the five men who received promotions to Major General in in February of seventy seven General Stephen would be cashiered. Within a year for drunkenness during battle Mifflin would resign after about two years amidst charges of embezzlement Saint Clair would be court martialed for abandoning Fort Ticonderoga and never give it another important command during the war. Lincoln would command the largest continental loss of the war at Charleston near the end of the war. Only William Alexander also known as Lord Sterling. What have a fairly impressive and relatively unblemished record from that class? Sadly for Lord Sterling he would die of natural causes near the end of the war. And get to play no role. In the post-war creation of the United States I also mentioned in passing this episode that for months declared its independence attendance during the time while Congress was meeting in Baltimore. I really haven't given it much attention. Because the nation as a whole wasn't paying much attention at the time time New York was already one of the most loyalist leaning states during the war. Doing anything to annoy New Yorkers like taking huge chunk of their state away from them could possibly result in New York moving back to the loyalist cam. Just imagine what would have happened. If New Yorkers workers had turned out to support the Burgoyne campaign and see history go in a very different direction so I think it was wise that Congress chose to ignore the whole thing and let the Vermont issue sit in limbo until after the war and even after until the US was formed under the constitution. Listen because it was ignored. The issue of Vermont's independence and its founding is an issue that probably deserves more attention. If you would like to learn more the book I'm recommending this week is called Moses Robinson and the founding of Vermont by Robert Mellow Moses Roses Robinson is probably another one of those important people. You've never heard of that. least if you live outside of Vermont. He was however instrumental in the founding of Vermont. Remond and also led Vermont as governor when it became the fourteenth state. The book which was written by Judge Robert Mellow and published by the Vermont. Vermont Historical Society in two thousand. Fourteen is an interesting look. Both at Robinson's life and also the turbulent years that Vermont struggled for recognition. It covers. Lots of interesting facts like the time. Vermont spent as an independent republic even though no other country recognized it us such that. It was the first state to outlaw slavery before any of the other original thirteen states and that Vermont there's even debated rejoining the British empire rather than being forced to become part of New York again at over four hundred pages. The book is quite thorough. And an interesting interesting read. Also this week I talked about the political infighting over the running of the Medical Corps for the army. I mentioned that that Jon Morgan. Whom Congress ousted in January seventeen seventy seven wrote a book justifying his tenure and covering the political machinations surrounding ending his removal? The book is obviously biased and one-sided but it gives a great primary source insight into the political wrangling of the time. If you're interested in taking a look at the book it's available on Archive Dot Org as a free book and is my online recommendation of the week week. The book is called a vindication of his public character in the station of Director General of the military hospitals and and physician in chief to the American army by Jon. Morgan you can look it up on archive dot org or just use the link that I've Provided on my website at Amr of PODCAST DOT com. Well that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week for another other American Revolution podcast.
ARP215 The Dunkirk Pirate
"Low thank you for joining the american revolution this week. Episode to fifteen the dunkirk pirate. In the spring of seventeen seventy nine gustavo's cunningham sailed into philadelphia. The ship captain had been away for years and was returning home. After many successful raids and harrowing experiences cunningham had been born in ireland but moved to philadelphia with his family as a teenager in seventeen sixty three. His cousin had already established a successful shipping company. Gus join the family business and was soon commanding. Merchant ships in trade with the west indies and europe. He purchased a home in philadelphia. Got married and settled into the life of a merchant ships. Captain cunningham also supported the patriot cause in late seventeen. seventy five. The maryland council of safety contracted with cunningham to sail to europe and purchase gunpowder and other military supplies. County ham sailed his ship the charming peggy to dunkirk france to purchase the needed items british agents took notice of his purchases and notified french authorities. The french at this time we're obligated by treaty to prevent the colonies from buying any war materials. But they also didn't really want to live up to that treaty. French officials inspected his ship as british ambassador demanded but found nothing. Connie had received advance notice and had dumped his gunpowder into the harbor before inspectors arrived so kinda made his escape but still without the gunpowder. He sailed for the netherlands. Were he made another deal to purchase gunpowder. This time. One of his own crew members informed authorities official seize. The ship put it under a prize crew and arrested the captain and crew cunningham however was not ready to go to prison. His crew overpowered the prize crew aboard his ship and made a dash back to the netherlands. They're county have made a quick deal to sell his ship before it could be confiscated. He made a deal to sell it to the dutch government but ended up. Never getting the money. Dutch officials simply kept his ship and never paid him so by early. Seventeen seventy six cunningham was still a free man but was stuck in the netherlands without a ship supplies or money. He spent the next year stuck in europe as the war in america heated up in early. Seventeen seventy seven cunningham received word that american commissioners in paris were trying to purchase an outfit ships to harass british shipping. Benjamin franklin had arrived in france with pre signed commissions from the continental congress. He gave cunningham a commission as a captain in the continental navy in march of seventeen seventy seven franklin also put cunningham in contact with william hodge a recently appointed american agent in dunkirk. The men outfitted a merchant ship that they purchase into a converted worship which they named the surprise by may cunningham had assembled a crew and sailed the surprise out into the english channel where he began. Seizing british merchant ships is ten gunship was pretty small by naval standards. But living up to its name. It was a real surprise. For british merchant ships in the english channel cunningham was able to get in close and demand the surrender of ships on accustomed to attack in these friendly waters. The surprise captured two ships and sailed back to dunkirk the british. Of course were apoplectic about this. This was early. Seventeen seventy seven and france and britain were still at peace. The british ambassador to france launched a formal protest with fair. Jen noted that france was permitting. Its harbors to be used by american pirates and that they had taken british ships that were engaged in lawful. Commerce france was treaty obligated to prevent the use of their ports for anyone attacking british shipping under this pressure. French officials ceased all three ships the surprise and the two captured prize ships returning the captured vessels to british authorities and arresting the crew. The british wanted cunningham to be sent to london to be tried for piracy and hanged the british ambassador. Lord stormont began referring to cunningham as the dunkirk pirate. Franklin was able to intervene and get cunningham freed before the british could take him to england for trial. France continued to play dangerous game of supporting american efforts as much as possible while still avoiding war with britain impressed by cunningham's first voyage hodge was able to convert an even larger ship for cutting m.'s. Next voyage the ship dubbed the revenge had fourteen cannons and twenty two swivel guns. It was also extremely fast. The french government learned to the new ship. Better allowed to leave on the promise that it would sail to america. Everyone knew this was ally but it gave the government the cover it needed to release the ship aboard his new ship. The revenge cunningham spent most of the next two years harassing british shipping. All around england scotland and ireland by some accounts he captured or destroyed at least sixty ships mostly using spain as a neutral port to sell his prizes and make necessary repairs. In britain word of the dunkirk pirates spread as he became the most effective. American raider in europe is efforts along with the three other continental navy. Ships harassing british shipping. In seventeen seventy seven created a real problem. British merchant ships could not get insurance except at astronomical rates british. Merchants began shipping on foreign ships. That they knew would not be subject to attack. As long as they flew. Under a neutral flag british commercial shipping came almost to a standstill. The british navy sent out ships in directions with orders to capture the dunkirk pirate but without success back in versailles. The british ambassador threatened war the british ambassador to france. Lord stormont accused french officials of tolerating the revenge allowing it to operate with. It's mostly french. Crew as it was disrupting british shipping. Unless french officials. Put a stop to it. Britain was definitely going to war with france and would begin seizing french ships at sea. This was still the summer of seventeen. Seventy seven the british army from new york was launching. Its offensive against philadelphia at another army from quebec. Was moving into new york so french officials saw a real possibility that the american rebellion might come to a quick end. They did not want war with britain. If britain was not distracted in america so french officials began cracking down on the americans at one point cunningham was being held in a french harbour pending arrest but then somehow got permission to leave. Officials arrested the american agent hodge who they threw ensue. The best deal. They also began cracking down on officials who had allowed cunningham to leave court with his ships. The crew of the revenge was mostly european sailors. Who had joined not out of any sense of patriotism love of war but in hopes of making some money many of them were for lack of a better word would be pirates. Who are pretty much happy to attack any ship from any country as long as it could help. Make them some money. Cunningham had to keep his crew in line manage the politics of neutral ports where british wanted him arrested and fight the entire british navy. That was looking to hang him. Despite all this he managed to remain active raising thousands of dollars in prize money for the patriot cause and disrupting british. Trade cunningham continued to raid british shipping around britain for the rest of the summer and fall. He sailed north to the baltic and also through the irish channel. He even see several ships right in the mouth of the teams river at one point. He even disguised his ship put into an english port for repairs over the course of eighteen months. He captured twenty seven ships and sank or burned another thirty three. I seventeen seventy eight. France had gone to war with britain but cunningham's difficulties with authorities did not end there. He faced accusations that he had attacked. Neutral ships including merchant ships from sweden and spain. It appears that connie have had taken. The shall we say controversial position that it was okay to seize british property that was being carried aboard neutral ships this was in contravention of generally accepted. Norms of privateer. Eventually he found that all european ports were closed to his ship. No one wanted to be associated with the dunkirk pirate comey have eventually sailed to the west indies thinking. He could disrupt shipping there as well by early seventeen seventy nine cunningham had been away from home in philadelphia for over three years. The american agent. At martinique william bingham ask cunningham to deliver a load of weapons to philadelphia so taking on that mission finally allowed cunningham to have an opportunity to return home and see his family. Cunningham returned to philadelphia. To what should have been a hero's welcome. He'd captured more ships than any other privateer or captain in the continental navy. He had completely disrupted shipping between britain and the continent any had provided prize money that left the american commissioners in paris with desperately needed funds the continental congress in philadelphia however did not see it that way several of his crew had returned to philadelphia before him and had accused him of not paying promised wages to his crew. More importantly though cunningham got caught up in congress's efforts to assault the reputation of silas deane paris. Commissioner arthur lee had reported that the surprise and the revenge both of cunningham ships were operating as privateer ships commissioner lee further alleged that this was part of a larger scheme between silence dean and cottingham to enrich themselves at government. Expense lee alleged. That dean had pocketed the prize. Money and that cunningham had possibly shared that money. The chair of the american committee in congress at this point was arthur. Lee's brother richard henry lee. The committee called on cottingham to give an account of himself. The first thing you needed to do was established that he was in fact a continental navy officer as he alleged for that he needed to produce his commission unfortunately for cunningham. French officials had seized commercial when they had arrested him to appease british officials before the two countries had gone to war. Cunningham had to slip out of france rather quickly and unofficially to avoid arrest and never got his commission back. Cunningham did not have any paperwork or often even a firsthand knowledge about the sales of the prizes that he'd captured typically his prizes to a port where they could be sold quickly and quietly before officials got wind of them and tried to seize them. It really didn't make much sense to keep records of ships that were being captured and sold. That information could only be used against him later at a piracy trial if the british captured him further. His goal was not really to raise money. It was to disrupt shipping. The sales of those ships were just added benefit and he had really left that to others. The committee seemed to accept cunningham's explanation about the disposition of the ships but without proof of a commission. They concluded that he was a privateer. Not a captain in the navy. Since benjamin franklin had provided his commission and was still in paris there was no way to confirm cunningham's claim at least not for many months instead congress ordered cunningham ship the revenge seized as government property since congress could not raise a crew to make use of the ship. Congress always desperate for cash opted to sell the ship at auction. The state of pennsylvania tried to buy the ship for river defenses but it was outbid by a private bitter that private bidder was a merchant by the name of gustavus cunningham. Yes captain cunningham bought back ownership if congress would not recognize his commission. He would at least go back to work on his own. Terms against british shipping cottingham received a letter of marque from pennsylvania to protect commerce along the delaware river but that was only a short-term gig once that expired for cunningham in the spring of seventeen seventy nine you once again went out into the atlantic in search of british prizes cunningham very quickly came up against the british navy ship the glacier in late april although you attempted to escape. The glacier was faster and managed to force his surrender. The british crew captured the ship and put captain cunningham in irons. The capture of the dunkirk pirate was really a big deal for the british because neither side was willing to recognize cunningham as a naval officer at the time of his capture and because his letter of marque had expired the british treated cunningham as a pirate. The galasie took him back to british occupied new york where he was held in a prison ship in some pretty horrific conditions. He only remained in new york for a short time before the british leadership decided to ship the famous dunkirk. Pirate back to england to face trial for treason and piracy for a time. He was held at penn. Dennis castle in foul mouth then moved to mill prison in plymouth for most of the stay. His captors kept cunningham in irons and held him in continuing horrific conditions. Cunningham lost about fifty pounds and was in danger of starvation. Cunningham knew that he was in serious danger of being hanged as well. He made serious attempts to escape prison including one where he dressed up like visiting doctor and simply walked out the front gate with a group of visitors but the guards realized it. Just after he got out and were able to recapture him is captures. Did offer him away out of his predicament. If he agreed to join the british navy he could leave prison and returned to sailing cunningham. However was he committed patriot. He not only refused the offers but joined in a signed agreement with his fellow prisoners. That none of them would enlist with the british in order to gain release from prison. Meanwhile back in america cunningham's reputation was improving. Benjamin franklin in paris had been able to get word to congress. That cunningham was in fact a legitimate navy captain once that was established. The continentals protested the treatment of this captured officer and in retaliation for cunningham's poor treatment by the british. The americans can find a captured british officer being held in boston to conditions similar to those that cunningham had experienced the british however were undeterred. They still plan to try and likely hang. The dunkirk pirate messing with british shipping was a serious offense and examples had to be made. Cunningham was not interested in stick around to see if the americans could convince the british otherwise he and several prisoners. Were able to break into the prison storeroom and steal some digging tools. The group managed to dig a tunnel under the main prison wall. On the night of november third. The group made its escape. The plan was for hundreds of prisoners to use the tunnel that night and all make their escape quitting general chaos however after the first few dozen had gone through the scramble inside. The tunnel turned to chaos. A boy got trampled and had his arm broken. His screams alerted the guards. Who shut down the tunnel and recaptured. Most of the escaping prisoners cunningham however had been one of the first few out of the tunnel he managed to avoid capture. A national manhunt for the dunkirk pirate underway but despite this cunningham managed to make his way to london where he had friends who provided him with shelter and money. After a few weeks he was able to get smuggled. Out of england aboard a ship bound for rotterdam in the netherlands in seventeen seventy nine. The netherlands was still a neutral party in the war. It had treaties with britain was tolerating the semi covert use of its ports by the american navy and some privateers cunningham reached the netherlands. He was able to make contact with commodore john. Paul jones jones had landed at texas. Which was a small dutch island. Just off the northern coast of the netherlands jones had actually just captured a british ship the serapis in a recent battle losing his own ship the home richard in the process. Now that battles a whole separate story. That i'm going to cover in a separate episode but for now. Suffice it to say that as soon as jones had rehabbed his fleet cunningham joined with jones's fleet the british were pressuring dutch officials to turn over all these american pirates to britain. The neutral dutch were doing best to avoid doing so while still trying to avoid going to war. With britain there is also a british fleet just offshore in case. The americans attempted to make an escape from port. Despite this british blockade jones cunningham managed to slip out of textile at night on december twenty seventh and avoid their would be captors jones had given cunningham command of a new frigate the alliance the squadron once again began wreaking havoc on shipping in the english channel. By this time though cunningham was eager to get home when the american fleet reached spain after a few weeks of rating cottingham parted ways with jones and as a passenger boarded. Another privateer ship. The experiment which was headed back to america. Unfortunately the british captured the experiment at sea. In march of seventy eighty. They identified the dunkirk pirate and sent him back to mill. Prison in plymouth. They're once again the authorities held cunningham in chains and under close confinement however they never did hold any trial. It seems that this time they accepted his status as a prisoner of war that said he was not accorded a honorable treatment usually granted to a captured officer and was considered a very serious flight. Risk after about a year in prison cunningham was permitted to return to france as part of a prisoner exchange in the summer of seventeen eighty one. This is where the timeline gets. A little sketchy. Supposedly the commissioners gave coming have another ship the loyola which he outfitted and prepared for another cruise against british shipping but before the crews could get underway. Kinda han received word of a peace treaty. That would end the war. The treaty negotiations did begin until the spring of seventeen eighty two so cutting may have been cooling his hails in france for a year after he left prison but before he had a new ship. That was ready to go. At any event with news of the treaty cottingham decided not to launch another cruise against british shipping. Instead he boarded the hannibal as a passenger and returned to philadelphia this time successfully there. He would return to his life as a merchant captain and renew his fight full recognition of his service in the continental navy. This time for veterans benefits. Next week we return to the southern frontier for the battle of chicken mauger creek. Hey thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show. Thanks as always to my patriot supporters in the alexander. Hamilton club trae. Nance george davis and george hunter. Thanks also to john. Herbert jeffrey voorhees. Claire answer mary would diane ward matthew out schuler and matthew domer- for one time gifts via paypal or venue. I really am most grateful for everyone who helps me cover my podcast expenses. As i've said before i don't put any content behind a paywall and i've opted to limit advertising to only a few host sponsors that i think are really great interests. This means i'm putting all my content out there in hopes that you will help support me voluntarily making it freely available to everyone who cannot afford to support me financially. If you wanna be an ongoing member for as little as two dollars a month please go to patriots dot com and look up. The american revolution podcast. If you are able to contribute ten dollars a month or more you will receive a magnet each and every month with a different flag from the american revolution. I really hope you will consider supporting this podcast if he can't I do appreciate you listening in helping to spread the word one correction. I have from last week. I referred to south carolina general in the continental army isaac huger. Several people pointed out that his last name is actually pronounced yu-gi-oh even though it's spelled h. u. g. e. r. It's pronounced yogi. So go figure this week. I talked about gustavus cunningham who i think is really one of the most important navy captains from the revolution. His efforts aren't really well remembered though primarily because congress refused to recognize his commission as i alluded at the end of the main show jones spent years fighting for recognition of his naval service. Benjamin franklin had sent certifications of his commission. Even french officials had lost the original commission. Even with franklin certification congress refused to recognize cunningham as a naval officer. Instead they just continue to treat him. As a privateer this aronie classification was related to that long standing. Fight with the lease arthur. Lee is said had accused cunningham of conspiring with silas deane to keep the prize money for themselves and because much of the prize money was obtained in spent covertly by the french commissioners. There was really new paper trail any this. Therefore congress was highly skeptical of paying out anymore prize money to captain cunningham even if he was a privateer so the government really never made any determination in his case years after the war ended in seventeen ninety three cunningham once again renewed his appeal for claims with the new federal government by this time alexander. Hamilton was secretary of the treasury and reviewed his case. Unfortunately by seventeen ninety. Three benjamin franklin silence stein and arthur lee. Were all dead so there were no more good witness evidence. For cunningham's claims hamilton could not find sufficient evidence to prove any of cunningham's claims and did not act on them none of these rejections though seem to dampen cunningham's order or support for america. He continued to work as a shipowner and merchantmen out of philadelphia and began to rebuild his life as a private citizen a later during the quasi war with france which took place in the late seventeen nineties. Cunningham outfitted a ship of war and prepared to do battle at sea once again but that war ended before any fighting actually began again. A couple of decades later during the war of eighteen twelve cunningham attempted to outfit a ship to sail back to the english channel and renew his fight with the british but he was really just too old by then so instead he ended up raising funds for the defensive philadelphia during the war. Any finally at home in philadelphia in eighteen nineteen a nearly a century after that in yearly twentieth century and american collector was purchasing some old naval memorabilia. In france he happened to purchase an old revolutionary war commission signed by john. Hancock and granted by benjamin franklin which commissioned a young man named gustavus cunningham as a captain in the continental navy. The long loss commission had finally reappeared and cunningham could retroactively get the credit that he deserved for his service to the country. I really wish. I could recommend a good biography about captain cunningham. But unfortunately there doesn't seem to be one instead. I'm going to go off topic this week with my book. Recommendation and recommend a brand new book by fellow. Podcasters mike dunkin. It's a new biography about the marquee to lafayette. Called hero of two worlds. Dunkin is of course a podcasting legend for his work the history of rome and they revolutions podcast his new book about lafayette looks at the man who played such an important role both in the american revolution and later in the french revolution. I'll admit that. I have not yet received the copy of the book myself but knowing dunkin's prior work. I know it's gonna be great as always. I've included an amazon link which also offers an audiobook option but mike is encouraging people to buy his book at private bookstores. Which of course had especially hard time over the past couple years so in addition to my john link i've also included a link to bookshop dot org which allows you order the book online through a private bookstore. So you have that options. Well my recommendation is more of research material. That a book that you want to sit down and read cover to cover. Its called letters and papers related to the cruises of gustavus cunningham. This was a book published in nineteen fifteen and edited by robert easer. It's really a compilation of various letters and other important papers related to cunningham. So if you wanna read more of the firsthand primary source accounts. This is a great place to start. You can download this free public domain book or read it online at archive dot org. You can search for on archive dot. Org or as always included direct links on my website at www dot an ref. Podcast dot com. My question this week comes from luc. Levesque who asks if the americans would have taken quebec city. What the locals be allowed to speak french and to be catholic. Well look it's difficult to say with any certainty how things would turn out. If history went differently we do know that the states and later the federal government made no real effort to mandate any particular language. Use there were dutch-speaking citizens. In new york and german speaking citizens in pennsylvania that maintained large communities and some of these existed well into the twentieth century. Presumably french-speaking citizens in quebec would have been afforded the same opportunity as for practicing catholicism. Although some states still had limitations on catholics holding political office and a few other restrictions at the time of independence most of those rules seem to fade pretty quickly in the years. Following estates accepted the notion of religious freedom even for states that were still skeptical of having catholics in their midst. They didn't really make any objection to catholics. Living in other states that were part of the united states so if quebec had entered the us as its own state it almost certainly would have been free to practice catholicism as large communities. Were already doing. In places like pennsylvania and maryland the continental congress was actively trying to encourage quebec to join with the other states. The articles confederations specified. That quebec could joined the confederation whenever it wished and put no restrictions on language or religion as a condition of doing. So if you have a question that you'd like to answer on the podcast after show. Please email me at amtrak dot history at gmail.com or reach out to me on social media. I'll do what. I can to answer any questions. You have about the american revolution. Well that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
Epsode 141 Congress Returns to Philadelphia
"Thank you for joining the American Revolution Today. Episode One forty one the Continental Congress returns to Philadelphia when we last left congress in the winter of Seventeen. Seventy six seventy seven. They had fled Philadelphia for Baltimore. The British in New Jersey had threatened to take Philadelphia and the politicians did not want to be there if that happened. General Washington of course eliminate that threat when he crossed the Delaware and captured the enemy at Trenton and Princeton then forced the British and Hessian still pull back their frontlines to the area of North Jersey around New York City with a threat removed. Congress returned to Philadelphia in March seventeen. Seventy seven not. Everyone else returned. Though John Adams in a letter to his wife noted that more than one half of the inhabitants remove themselves into the country. Most of those who remained were quakers who adams called dull as Beatles. Although everyone expected that the British would make another attempt on Philadelphia in the summer of seventeen. Seventy seven for the moment in the spring. There was no emergency. Congress once again turned its attention to the articles of confederation document that would authorize and define Congress's authority to do well anything. They did not actually agree on much of anything but they did agree to devote at least two days each week to working out and agreeable plan by the end of April. They had agreed to three articles. One of which contained the name of the document. A second affirmed that each of the separate states retain their sovereignty and a third to mutual defence of all states against any outside enemy. Another words fighting together in a war that they had already been fighting for two years. The second article was the only one that proved contentious. Congress had begun. Its debates using draft articles submitted by John Dickinson the Dickinson draft envisioned a more powerful national government. That would handle most matters leaving states only control over their internal affairs. The delegates rejected this approach instead. They viewed Congress as an international assembly of separate states. They would work together for mutual defense. They might unanimously agree to do some other things in cooperation but there was no way state could be forced by the others to do anything. It didn't want to do over the next few months. The delegates debated what additional powers? The states should give to Congress but they really couldn't agree on much of anything once again. The most contentious issues were over. Voting and representation whether states should be represented by population or with equal representation for each state. These debates pushed on for months when in July Congress once again voted to table the debates on the articles since they could not reach any consensus. Congress would just continue to operate without any guiding document. Congress took up other various matters on other issues during the same time on June fourteenth. Seventeen seventy seven. It passed a resolution saying that the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen stripes alternating red and white that the union be thirteen stars. Wait in a Bluefield representing a new constellation. That is why we celebrate Flag Day on June fourteenth back in episode eighty nine. I talked about the story of Betsy. Ross creating the first flag in May seventeen seventy six. I mentioned at the time that there was no good contemporary evidence of the Betsy. Ross story being true. The story comes from Ross family lawyer and was not written down until decades after all the contemporaries were dead. It is still quite possible that the story is true. The flags creation was not a momentous event that would necessarily be recorded at the time but if there was a flag in seventeen seventy six there is no record of it being flown and Congress certainly didn't authorize it as the official flag until June. Seventeen seventy seven when it did that. Congress's main purpose for the resolution. In June seventeen seventy seven was to create a standard ensign for naval ships. It did not specify that the stars on the flag be put in a circle. There are some flags from that time that have different star designs. The first mention of the site of a new flag came a few months later in August. Seventeen seventy seven making flag day. A celebration did not become a thing until more than a century later after the civil war there was however one celebration that Congress was ready for at the end of the day on July. Second Congress adjourned for two days to celebrate the first anniversary of the Declaration of independence on July Fourth. Seventeen seventy seven congress and all of Philadelphia's celebrated worships and galleys gathered at Philadelphia decorated in red white and blue and with streamers each of the ships fired. A thirteen gun volley in honor of the thirteen independent states. A newspaper article reported that quote. The evening was closed with the ringing of bells and at night there was a grand exhibition of fireworks which began and concluded with thirteen rockets on the Commons and the city was beautifully illuminated. Everything was conducted with the greatest order and decorum and the face of joy and gladness was universal. Thus may the fourth of July that glorious an ever memorable day be celebrated through America by the Sons of freedom from age to age till time shall be no more according to another report? A band made up of Hessian. Pow's from Trenton played for crowds in Philadelphia on that day as well with the first independent. Stay celebration over. Congress got back to work another contentious issue for Congress was the promotion of generals that Sprang Congress commissioned a few more Brigadier Generals George Clinton of New York Edward Hand of Pennsylvania. Charles Scott Virginia Evans learned of Massachusetts and Jedidiah Huntington of Connecticut during the Baltimore Session. Congress had agreed to give primary consideration to three factors when promoting generals one was merit. The second was seniority. The third was the numbers of troops supplied by each state. In other words estate that provided more soldiers to the army would get more general officers. Of course each of these were general factors with no firm rule on how they should be applied or even how much weight each be given so it really didn't solve anything but whatever little value. The resolution had got thrown out the window when French officers began to arrive with notes from the American commissioners in Paris promising them commissions and officer ships in the continental army. These men had no seniority in America. Were not from any state that supplied troops and whose merit was a matter of debate. Most even did not speak English in March. After receiving word of dozens of French officers making their way to America Congress passed a resolution saying that unless the officer had mastered English and had top recommendations he would not be accepted. The problem was congress could not simply anger French officers. Who had taken the trouble to come across. America with promises already made turning them away would possibly ruined chances of forming a military alliance with France in the spring of seventeen seventy seven. Many of the French officers promised commissions as general or other high ranking officers arrived in America now up until this time the only French general in the continental army was Matthias Day Fermoy. That was the soldier of Fortune. Who Somehow sale to America from the French? West indies. In late? Seventeen seventy six to this day. We know nothing about his real background. Before coming to America he claimed to be a kernel engineers in the French army. Although there are no records of his service I mentioned Fair Moi in episode one twenty five when he commanded a small force near Trenton and at the first sight of the enemy ran away abandoning his soldiers. People were beginning to suspect that he was a fraud but for now he was still serving many by seventeen seventy seven were ready to consider any Frenchman claiming titles and experience to be imposters. Though in France Silas Deane had already approved dozens of French officers to serve in America. Many of them had attempted to sail. In December seventeen seventy six aboard three ships that Dean and his French counterpart Bomar Shea had packed full of supplies and plan to sail out of Havre. I mentioned this back in episode one fifteen when British Ambassador Lord Stormont caught wind to the venture and forced the French Foreign Minister version to shut the whole thing down. Only one ship got out and it ended up turning around and got stopped as well. Most of the officers look for another option. The first one to successfully make it was lieutenant. Colonel Philip who bear predom- deboer whose name I probably pronounced horribly. But that's the best yet. He arrived in Portsmouth New Hampshire on March seventeenth. Seventeen seventy seven aboard the mercury. One of Dean's supply. Ships was able to make its way to America in April about a month after his arrival. Congress approved aboard commission and backdated the date of his commission as Brigadier General to December. First Seventeen seventy six this backdating retroactively put him ahead of sixteen other brigadiers who had received commission since then to bore by. This time was almost fifty years old. He had fought as a cavalry officer in the war of Austrian succession where he was badly wounded and lost the use of one hand although still active as an officer in the seven years war. There's no record of his active participation in any battles before leaving for America he was serving as an artillery brigadier an area. The continentals needed experienced officers. He took command of a regain of mostly. Maryland regiments along with one from Quebec which was made up of many French. Speaking soldiers a month later. Another of Dean supply ships. The effort trait arrived in Portsmouth. This time carrying two men holding commissions as Generals Thomas Conway as Brigadier and Philip Charles Duke. Oh dre as major general. The infiltrate was ship that had gotten away in December but returned back to France a few days later after that stoppage it finally did slip out of France at the end of January and made a difficult three month. Voyage to New Hampshire. The officers from their made their way overland to Philadelphia to present their credentials. Now I actually mentioned Thomas Conway last week. When he commanded troops at the battle short hills. But I really didn't give any background on him. At that time Conway was born an Irish Catholic. His family moved to France when he was a child to escape the restrictions on Catholics in Ireland. Conway joined the French army at age. Fourteen in France's Irish brigade a special group for Irish ex patriots serving in France. Through this service. He rose to the rank of colonel because Conway was not only an experienced officer but also spoke English. Congress approved his commission as a brigadier in. May just a few months. After his arrival Conway entered service as an infantry. Commander do cordray was another matter. Dean had offered him command of artillery and engineering for the continental army. The current commander General Henry. Knox made clear that he would resign from the army if Congress put him under the command of cowdray. Congress spent most of the summer to baiting what to do about all this as he waited. Cordray busied himself. Fire advising on the Delaware River Defenses. That were protecting Philadelphia from a naval invasion filing in August. Nearly four months after he arrived in America Congress offered Cowdrey a commission as a major general but with the understanding that he would not be part of the command structure instead. Congress created a New Position Inspector General of Ordinance and military manufacturers where cowdrey could advise on matters not issue orders. Cowdrey reluctantly accepted the position figuring. He could make his way into command after proving his worth on the field. There were a bunch of other French officers that I neglected dimension because even just limiting myself to daming the general's is thrown out a whole bunch of names that let's face it. None of us are GONNA remember. I'll make one exception to that rule and also note that Louis. Do Porto received a commission in July as a continental colonel and commander of Engineers I making the exception for him since he would be promoted to brigadier in a few months and has one of the longest and most successful roles of all the French officers in the continental army but Congress was also receiving dozens of French officers. Who had been promised commissions as colonels majors and captains and I promise I won't bore you with all of their names while Congress was deciding what to do with more than a dozen other French officers that had already made to Philadelphia. Holding these promises of commissions granted by Silas Deane Paris three of the other officers that had been promised commissions as major also showed up initially congress just said no they did not want any more general officers who could not speak English. That just created too many problems. The French officers however persisted in making their case one of the most persistent was the least experienced officer. The nineteen year old French. Captain named Gilbert. Do Motiur although the boy had no combat experience he had been an officer since the age of thirteen when his family had obtained for him a Lieutenant's commission since his family was very well connected to the French king. Congress didn't want to insult him probably most important though he offered to serve without pay so by the end of July. Congress opted to make this young man a major general in the continental army. So do moti a better known by his aristocratic title the Marquee. Lafayette received his commission on July. Thirty first seventeen seventy seven along with Lafayette. Were to more senior officers and would be major. General's General Johann. Dekalb A german-born officer in the French army was the most experienced senior officer to travel to America. He and Colonel Charlotte. Louis Comte de Maure both expected to be made major generals unlike Lafayette. Both very much expected to be paid for their services instead. Congress dithered and left these men cooling their heels in Philadelphia for the rest of the summer out. I wanted to vote an entire episode to Lafayette's backstory in a few weeks. So I'M GONNA get into him as wells story of these other two men at that same time during this same session. Congress took care of one other important piece of business regarding generals. After receiving word of General Benedict Arnold's brave leadership during the Danbury raid. Congress finally promoted him to Major General on. May second for Arnold. This was too little too late. He went from being the most senior Brigadier General to becoming the most junior major general meeting. The promotion did not change his place in the command structure. After seeing word of his promotion Arnold traveled to Philadelphia to meet directly with Congress. He brought with him a pamphlet published by one of his enemies. Colonel John Brown which ended famously with an accusation. Levy at Arnold quote. Money is this man's God and to get enough of it. He would sacrifice his country and quote. Arnold thought that such scurrilous accusations were the reason. Congress had been reluctant to promote him and had allowed so many other men to pass Arnold in rank and security. He wanted to challenge these accusations. The Congressional Committee that acted as the board of war was headed by John Adams. They allowed Arnold to testify at a committee meeting on. May Twenty first. That ran well into the night. It wasn't the full hearing that Arnold wanted but it did give them the chance to tell his side of things directly to members of Congress two days later the board of war presented its report to Congress exonerating Arnold of the charges against him. Congress however refused to act on restoring Arnold's seniority. After two months of waiting Arnold had enough and submitted his resignation to Congress but before Congress could act it also received a letter from General Washington Informing Congress that the British had begun their invasion of upstate. New York Washington recommended that Arnold be sent immediately to help defend against US invasion. Arnold ask that his resignation requests be put on hold and rushed off to fight another battle in defense of his country on August. Eighth long after Arnold had left for New York Congress finally took up the resolution to adjust arnold seniority and they voted against it overwhelmingly. Even John Adams who seemed to have a good impression of Arnold voted. No the main reason seemed to be that Arnold was pressuring them to do it. Congress thought such pressure was inappropriate so as Arnold fought the battle of Saratoga. Congress denied his request for seniority as I said shortly after its Independence Day celebrations Congress received word of the British capture of Fort Ticonderoga and that British General Johnny Burgoyne was marching south through. New York's Mohawk valley a few weeks after that Congress learned that British General Howe had left New York and then landed in Maryland where he planned to assault Philadelphia from the South General Washington Marshes Army from New Jersey toward the British on August. Twenty fourth seventeen seventy seven just days after confirmation. That House fleet was in the Chesapeake Bay. The continental army marched through the streets of Philadelphia on their way south. This was a bit of theater by General Washington. He wanted to impress the city and Congress with his army of around twelve. Thousand men. Washington gave orders the night before to make sure the officers and men were ready to March smartly through the city streets carrying their arms and looking like soldiers. The army marched down front street to chestnut then across the city marching right past independence hall toward the Schuylkill River Wagons with baggage and extra ammunition as well as female camp followers were redirected around the city and would not march through Philadelphia along with the soldiers. Orders also prohibited men from stepping out of line for any reason during the march through the city on punishment. A thirty nine lashes to be carried out at camp the next night if they did John Adams was not overly impressed by the site of the army and a letter to Abigail. Later that day he wrote quote the army upon an accurate inspection of it. I find to be extremely well armed. Pretty well clothed and tolerably disciplined. Much remains to be done. Our soldiers have not yet quite the air of soldiers. They don't step exactly at time. They don't hold up their heads quite erect or turn out their toes so exactly as they ought. They don't all of them cock their hats and such as do. Don't all wear them. The same way Adams went on to say that with the army now between the enemy in Philadelphia. He felt as safe there as he would in braintree but that sense of safety did not last long general how was. GonNa fight a series of battles that fall all of which are going to be topics of future episodes by September Philadelphia was about to fall to the British army. Congress once again had to flee the city this time they went first to York Pennsylvania which is about sixty five miles west Philadelphia then onto Lancaster which is about another twenty miles. Further west across the Susquehanna River. Congress would remain there in Lancaster for the course of the British occupation of Philadelphia. Next week I want to take a closer look at General Burgoyne northern British army which has its sights set on Fort Ticonderoga. Hey thanks for joining the American Revolution. Podcast after show thanks to trae. Nance for his continued support at say Robert Morris Circle Supporter on Patriot on. I really appreciate his generous commitment to help me meet. The show's expenses trae like all my patriot. Supporters at ten dollars a month or higher receives a different revolutionary war flag magnet each month. I've made dozens of different flag magnet. So far each one comes with an explanation of the flag and its role in the war also for as little as two dollars a month. You can help support the show on patron you get advance. Access to new shows access to a private commercial. Free are assess feet of the podcast and other benefits. I may soon be releasing some private recordings for Patriot. Numbers only so if he can kick in anything. I very much appreciate it. This week's episode covered quite a few months of activity from the time the Continental Congress returned from Baltimore to Philadelphia in March. Seventeen seventy seven until it left the city again in September. Obviously quite a few other things happened during those same months which I have covered in other episodes and will continue to cover episodes to come. My go with this episode was to simply focus on what Congress was doing during this period as this episode showed much of it was dealing with generals and would be generals from both the states and abroad other than that much of the debate centered around the articles of confederation which Congress still did not pass while the leaders all agreed they did not want Britain to rule them anymore. They still could not agree on. What would come next? Some believe there was a need for some central authority that would have at least some basic powers others were strong supporters of the states remaining separate entities in their view although the states would cooperate when they could their declaration of independence meant that each state was well. Independent officials did not want to see any power even to Congress to have control over the state as a result of this ideological division. The debate in the continental Congress went nowhere. I sometimes get the question. What was the legal authority for Congress to operate during this period? The answer is that while there was none until July seventeen seventy six Britain and ultimately the king was the sovereign and as we saw the king considered the congress and unlawful assembly upon independence. Each state declared its own sovereignty. Ironically they made that declaration through Congress but there was nothing in the declaration or any other document that seated any sovereign authority to Congress let alone say should operate congress started in seventeen seventy four as an ad hoc body of men who were mostly sent by local. Patriot organizations with dubious legal authority to do anything anyway. The only thing that held Congress together was that the people generally agreed that there needed to be cooperation and that Congress was the place to do it. The delegates just made up their own rules and acted without any formal governance while that was no permanent solution. No one seemed to agree on. What would be the permanent solution? The one thing that the state's seemed to agree on letting Congress do was running the army something. The delegates showed a breast probably mixed ability. Doing granting commissions was a highly political issue which led to the ongoing rivalries between top officers. And even some resignations of good officers the introduction of a bunch of French officers at this time made things even more complicated. You have to remember that. Most Americans had grown up as British colonists hating the French their traditional enemies now. Suddenly these same men were being asked to put their lives under the command of these former foes who did not even speak their language it created a great deal of confusion and conflict for many with all these problems the only way. Congress got anything done with the quality of its delegates and my book recommendation. This week covers the lives of one of those delegates. A longtime member of the Continental Congress Robert Morris. The book is called Robert Morris Financier of the American Revolution Fi Charles rapidly. Morris is one of the key players in Congress during the war but he later ops not to join Washington's cabinet under the constitution he passes off that role to a younger man Alexander Hamilton. Thus Morris is not as widely as remembered as he might have been as a founding father. Still I find his story fascinating. He pulls himself up from nothing to become one of the most prominent merchants in America at one point in his life. He may have been the wealthiest man in America but then ends up going to debtor's prison. The book is a traditional biography covering his entire life. It's over five hundred pages. Not Counting notes and index the author. Charles Rappleye was journalist. Who wrote several books about American history? Sadly he passed away. A couple of years ago is book about Morris was published in two thousand ten. If you've read other books about famous delegates such as Benjamin Franklin John Adams the Robert Morris. Biography provides an interesting new perspective for my online recommendation. This week if you want to learn more about the history of flag day check out my linked to the Chamber of Commerce site about the history of Flag Day. It provides a good and pretty short summary of how we came to celebrate. This Day. The URL for the site is a pretty long one. It's www dot chamber of commerce dot org slash US flag slash history slash flag day DOT html. Of course you don't have to remember all that. I've put a direct link on my website at am Rev. PODCASTS DOT com. Well that's offer this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another American Revolution podcast.
ARP192 The Wyoming Valley Massacre
"Thank you for joining the american revolution today. Episode one ninety two the wyoming valley massacre after the british evacuated philadelphia. They consolidated their forces around new york city by early july. Seventeen seventy eight. General clinton's army was still settling into new york. Following the battle of monmouth in northern new jersey. General washington moved his continentals into camps in northern new jersey where they could challenge any movements by the british out of new york city. Although the british regulars were taking up defensive positions that did not mean. Americans were safe from attack. British agents had been trying to encourage indian tribes in canada and upstate new york and along the western frontiers to support the kings efforts to suppress the rebellion. The british warren tribal leaders that unchecked the colonists would take more of their tribal land they also gave some tribes hope of reclaiming lands that had been taken from them especially to tribes. Who helped the king during this rebellion. Back in episodes one fifty one and fifty two. I talked about the mostly native american force. That was assembled. under general. Barry saint leger to assist burgoyne army by capturing ford stan wicks in western new york. That army plan to meet up with the main british army at albany the patriot militia. Stop this advance at oriskany. Then general benedict. Arnold forced the british and their native allies at fort. Stan wicks to flee back to canada that however was only one setback in a larger effort to use local tribes. British agents remained active all along the frontier trying to encourage warriors to join in a continuing campaign against the rebels. One such agent was colonel. John butler who would go on to form butler's rangers butler had been born in connecticut but moved to upstate. New york as a boy is father. Who held a commission. As captain in the british army settled the family in the mohawk valley as a teenager butler had interacted with native tribes. Getting involved in the for trade. He learned to speak several native languages and often found work as an interpreter. In seventeen fifty five. He received a commission as a captain in the newly created indian department of the british government during the french and indian war. Bilour had served as an officer under indian agent. Sir william johnson commanding a native american force of mostly iroquois warriors following the war butlers venture in for trading and farming had put him at the head of a wealthy and powerful family in the region. By the seventeen seventy s butler had become a prosperous landowner with over twenty six thousand acres the second largest landowner in the area next only to sir william johnson bilour had become a pillar of the community. He served as a judge as representative to the colonial legislature. And lieutenant colonel. In the tryon county militia. After william johnson's deaf and after johnson successor guy johnson traveled to london for an extended. Time butler became acting superintendent of the iroquois six nations when the revolution began butler spoke up as a leading loyalist. He soon had to flee to canada to avoid capture by patriots. Although his wife and several of his children were captured his family would remain in custody for nearly five years until they reunited in seventeen eighty one as part of a prisoner exchange a going from respected community leader to war refugee only made butler eager to bring the fight back to new york and put down the rebellion. When the war began british policy was to keep native tribes neutral or to use them primarily as scouts butler was an early advocate of using loyal tribes. Like the koi as warriors in battle by seventeen seventy. Six butler was organizing loyalists and natives to assist with resistance to the continental army's invasion of canada. In seventeen seventy seven. He helped to organize the warriors. Who marched with general st leger to capture fort stan wicks and he was involved in the battle of risk any and the subsequent retreat following the army's withdrawal to canada butler traveled to quebec. Their general guy carleton commissioned him to maintain a permanent regiment of loyalist butler organiz both refugees from new york as well as native warriors and the regiment tone as polars rangers following the capture of coins. Army butler's rangers went into winter camp around niagara with plans to go on the offensive. The following spring the entry of france into the war and london's decision to evacuate philadelphia and go on the defensive did nothing to deter butler from launching an offensive with his native forces in the spring. Seventeen seventy eight bay. Look south for possible targets to strike. The wyoming valley is a large area in what is today northeastern pennsylvania around modern day. Scranton at the time control of this area was still a matter of dispute between pennsylvania and connecticut. During the colonial era royal charters often gave vague or contradictory information on borders of various colonies as a result. Colonists often had to fight to assert their legal claims to land connecticut claim that it was entitled to all of what is today northern pennsylvania and even parts of what is today northern ohio indiana and illinois at the same time pennsylvania had claimed all of that same land as well as most of what is today western new york king charles. The second had granted this land to connecticut back when the dutch still controlled new netherlands. What later became new york. The grant seemed to be an attempt to challenge dutch control of the area after the british took new york. This grant mattered much less to those in london. Since these lands were all now british colony's near the end of his reign. Charles the second granted much of the same territory to william penn. Since at the time the area was controlled by the susquehanna indians. No colonists were really moving there anyway. Although the iroquois lived further north in new york they asserted control over the natives. Who were living in the wyoming valley. Those tribes living in the area were not members of the six nations but they did speak iroquois in asserting its claims to the land connecticut. Deal with the erc. Oy for control of the wyoming valley and the right to settle there. They signed the agreement just before the french and indian war began with the outbreak of that war. Connecticut did not really try to settle that area near the end of the war. The local delaware under td using resisted encroachment by settlers. I discussed those events way back in episode eighteen. T do you. Sing was attempting to broker a deal with pennsylvania to keep the valley for the local tribes after td using was killed probably by fellow indians who opposed his attempts to start a war is son massacred a small outpost of about forty connecticut settlers in the valley the attackers tortured and then murdered ten of the men to send a message that settlers were not welcome there. The attack had its intended effect as connecticut did not send any more settlers in the years following the war later. The iroquois reneged on the deal with connecticut and sold the land once again to pennsylvania colonists from pennsylvania known as mites again to settle the wyoming valley the seventeen sixties mostly in relatively isolated farms along the susquehanna river alarmed by this development connecticut yankees once again. Form their own colonization plan. Establishing the town of wilkes-barre in seventeen sixty seven this kicked off. What is known as the first peta. My yankee war in seventeen sixty nine. Pennsylvania militia tried to force the connecticut settlers to leave both sides established forts had guns and tried to force their will on the other. But it wasn't really a full-scale war. Only three people were killed over the course of two years. The violence however once again largely deterred further immigration from connecticut. In seventeen seventy one king george. The third confirmed connecticut's claim to the land. Things remained relatively calm for a few years. Then in seventeen. Seventy three with the support of the king's privy council ruling connecticut's sent another group of colonists who founded the town of westmoreland once again kinda mites resisted what they saw as an incursion on land that they owned in seventeen seventy five. The fighting flared up again in what became known as the second peta. My yankee war. On christmas day. Seventeen seventy five. A of might force of about six hundred militia attacked a connecticut fort at what became known as the battle of rampart. Rocks the yankee defenders managed to hold off the assault and keep their position. This inspired the connecticut legislature to establish moorland county which soon grew to a population of over three thousand connecticut. Transplants when the revolution began most of the connecticut yankees joined with the patriots while the penalites largely backed the loyalists aware of this division. Colonel butler attempted to recruit panama lewis to attack the connecticut outposts in the wyoming valley when local loyalists combined with butler's rangers who were new york loyalists and with the seneca and delaware warriors. They created a pretty imposing force for the region. Connecticut militia in the wyoming valley had four forts with only a few hundred militia to garrison them in times of emergency. These were wilkes barra. Forty winter moot and jenkins none of these forts were of substantial size to fight off large. These were more stock. Aids designed to provide some protection against smaller attacks that were common in the ongoing fighting between the yankees and panama. It's the patriots in the area. Were already at lower strength. Many of the connecticut militia in the area had volunteered with the continental army and were off fighting in new jersey. those who remained behind or often younger or older men who could not endure the longer military campaigns this reduce militia would quickly find itself. Well outnumbered on june twenty eighth the same day as the battle of monmouth and advance team from butler's column attacked a grist mill capturing later killing three locals a few days later butler's force of over six hundred men arrived supported by another four hundred or so local penn might loyalists butler's first action in the area was to demand the surrender of fort winter. Move the garrison had to surrender their arms and supplies but were then permitted to leave on the promise that they would not take up arms for the remainder of the war. The small garrison surrendered the fort and departed following. That butler sent a message to nearby fort. Forty two men the surrender of that garrison as well in case you're wondering for forty was named for the forty settlers from connecticut who had built at us earlier at ford forty colonel zebulon butler no relation to the british commander jon butler commanded a militia force of three hundred fifty two four hundred patriots. Zabulov was also a veteran of the french and indian war. He had come to the wyoming valley in seventeen sixty nine from connecticut. He had fought the penalites in earlier. Disputes capturing fort wyoming in seventeen seventy one and leading the successful defense at rampart rocks in seventeen. Seventy five at this time. Zevulun butler was actually a continental colonel from the second connecticut regiment. He happened to be home on leave and was attempting to recruit more volunteers for the continental army when the war came to his home in the wyoming valley given his rank and experience. Tabula took command of the efforts to defend against the invasion at a council of war. The more senior officers wanted to wait for more reinforcements. Others however wanted to attack right away as i said most of the men of prime fight the age were already away in the continental army. The militia was made up of men who were older too young to serve on those campaigns. The older men wanted to wait for more reinforcements. They expected the arrival of at least a hundred more neighboring militia shortly and had also sent riders to philadelphia to get continental support. They also had good intelligence. About how large a force. They actually faced the experience butler agreed with this group and cautioned restraint others however strongly advocated for an immediate attack against the invaders particularly among the younger soldiers. They called butler a coward and said that they would march without him. If he's not wanna fight in the end. Those calling for an immediate attack prevailed on july third. A force of nearly four hundred yankee militia marched toward for winter mood at the time it seemed plan was to get near the four but then form a defensive line to determine just how large a force they would actually be facing as they approached the fort a few men announce they were marching into a trap and fell out of the column a back of the fort. The british force received word of this advancing enemy column the british commander at the fort or it burned but then formed his men outside of the fort mostly in the woods to prevent the enemy from counting their numbers. He sent his indian warriors to hide in the forest near fort. The american militia saul the fort on fire and took it as an indication that the british were abandoning the fort and retreating. So they quicken their pace to catch up with the british. They hope to find a retreating column that they could hit in the rear that however was not what they found as they approached the burning fort. The attackers indicated that they were aware that the enemy was still in the area and called them to show themselves on the field. The undisputed yankee militia began firing from about two hundred yards out as they advanced on the british line. They were both too far away for their muskets to hit anything by some accounts the yankees fired at least three valleys advanced with almost no effect when they got to within about one hundred yards. The rangers rose up and fired back. The seneca warriors rose up from their position on the right flank fired and then with loudwar roofs charged the militia. The americans panicked at the surprise of the charging indians field. Commanders attempted to keep the lines formed and facebook the rangers and the indians the militia. At least by some accounts tried to hold their lines but were quickly overrun. They turned and fled the field in disorder. The entire engagement had lasted only thirty to forty five minutes. Only a small portion of the nearly four hundred american forces escaped the field that day about sixty men were able to outrun the attack by the rangers and the indians the rest were either killed or captured and we don't know exactly how many died on the field because those who were captured did not remain prisoners very long as with many battles between loyalists and patriots or between settlers and indians combatants showed little respect for the enemies. Life or for any generally accepted rules of warfare many years after the battle a story and wrote down accounts based on oral history. He recounted what happened next quote. Men were transformed into demons and while indian marksman skillfully wounded the flying yankees in the thighbone. Thus disabling them yet saving them for future tories. Both tories and indians clubbed and scout them as they tried to conceal themselves nearby or in the water. Many of the yankees fled to a nearby swap or dove into the susquehanna river seeking to hide themselves from their pursuers but the tories and indians followed after them killing them without mercy. When account is of a militiaman named had a pencil who hit in the willows. After being wounded by an indian arrow his brother john pencil who was fighting with the loyalists found his wounded brother. Henry cried were his brother to spare him. John replied quote mighty will but you are a damned rebel raised his musket and shot his brother dead. The writer commented quote. Even the indians were struck with horror at this deed others reported lansing men in the river allowing their corpses to float away. Even the soldiers who were not killed immediately on the field did not fare any better over the course of the night. The loyalists and indians tortured and murdered their prisoners. One account describes militia captain bid lack. His captors threw him into a campfire that night then held him down with pitchforks as the screaming. Struggling man burned to death. Another account reports of an indian queen named esther who forced eighteen prisoners to kneel around iraq she chanted and danced s. She bashed brains of each victim. One at a time any nbc. British reported only five prisoners surviving that night. The british commander reported that his men took two hundred and twenty seven scalps. many more. Were missing who were also likely killed. British casualties amounted to two loyalists. And one indian killed at another eight indians wounded following the massacre the local surrendered fort forty and two other small forts the rangers disarm the garrisons and permitted them. Parole the british commander said little about the massacre of prisoners in his reports but did stress that noncombatant women and children were treated with utmost dignity by this. He meant that they were allowed to live but really not much else. Over the next few days the loyalist forces destroyed over one thousand houses and barns in the area forcing all the patriot inhabitants to flee with almost nothing they confiscated their property. Including thousands of cattle sheep horses and harvested grain. What they could not carry away. They destroyed the effort had the intended effect. It forced virtually all surviving connecticut settlers or others. Who back the patriot. Cause to abandon the wyoming valley the massacre became a rallying cry for the patriots. It would eventually lead to retribution. But that would happen. The following year and will be the topic of future episodes. The seneca tribe later strongly denied accusations of these atrocities. Whether true or not the stories of the atrocities had the effect of spreading fear and a desire for revenge among the patriots. Next week we're going to return to philadelphia. A silas deane attempts to clear his name before congress. Hey thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show my thanks to train. Aunts george davis lewis white and robert hunter for support of this podcast at the alexander. Hamilton club level on patriotic also. Thanks to lisa ham for support. At the robert morris circle level on patriot. Thanks also to chip brenner. and steve. Berger for their continuing support on patriot. I also appreciate one time contributions via paypal from bruce. Recant everyone who can chip in even a few dollars helps keep this podcast freely available for everyone else who cannot. I also wanted to remind everyone again. That i have a weekly newsletter which provides more reading materials that are relevant to each week's episode. You can sign up on my website at. Www dot am rev. Podcast dot com in my newsletter. I also include a list of live online events related to the american revolution that are happening each week. Many of these are free events by great speakers one of the groups putting on these events is a group called history camp. Which i've mentioned before a couple years ago. I was trying to bring history camp to philadelphia. It's daylong long event of great speakers on a wide variety of history topics we were all set to have our first event in may twenty twenty when the pandemic cancelled everything all history camps were cancelled for twenty twenty and it looks like all of twenty twenty one is going to be a bust as well. The good news is that the folks who run history camp are adapting. They hold weekly virtual events every thursday evening which are free to attend. I'm also pleased to announce that they will be holding a virtual history camp america in july. This will be a day long event with multiple speakers just like the in person events that we hope to return soon but this of course will be a virtual event and i hope anyone who's interested will consider attending the american revolution. Podcast has partnered with history camp to help make this event. A success and i will provide more details as they become available so this week. I covered some of the fighting between loyalists and patriots. That took place away. From the main army's this case it was an ongoing between connecticut and pennsylvania that had been going on for well over a century over which colony controlled the wyoming valley. This was just the sort of dispute that loyalists to the conclusion that the colonies needed a king. Without a king to decide such porter disputes. They would inevitably devolve into war and mass slaughter even if everyone did not always lake judgments in london. Those judgments at least provided a conclusive and peaceful resolution to such disputes. Others of course would argue that when the privy council in london declared something that didn't always really settle the issue and fighting continued anyway but even these ongoing disputes were likely to be more muted than an all out war when the revolutionary war began. British officials tried to use these enter colonial disputes to sow division between the now states. It is probably the main reason why local panama sites in this area became loyalists. Their enemies from connecticut were patriots and they were not going to serve on the same side as their enemies. Now i have to admit i struggled to keep the two sides straight in this story because my family has lived in pennsylvania for three hundred years. And i've always thought of the pennsylvanians as supporting the patriot. Cause i well. I knew paramedics were loyalists. I kept wanting to think of them somehow in the back of my head as the good guys and the connecticut invaders as the enemy well at the same time conflicting with my bias to think of the patriots as the good guys against the loyalists. Of course try to present the facts neutrally but we all have our inherent biases in our heads. And i suppose my pro pennsylvania bias is just a holdover from when such things mattered typically in such disputes. Those who sided with the loyalists often lost their claims to those who sided with the patriots. In this case however the continental congress eventually backed pennsylvania's claims to the territory in seventeen eighty seven. There was actually a third yankee. Penna my war. That broke out in seventeen eighty four. After the revolutionary war had ended. That one did not fully resolve the dispute either. Pennsylvania attempted to resolve the fighting by recognizing some of the private land claims by connecticut settlers in seventeen eighty seven however. The disputes remained a matter of contention for many years. Following final resolution. Really wouldn't happen until seventeen ninety nine when the federal government conclusively published that the area did belong to pennsylvania and ordered reimbursement for private land claims held under connecticut claims or allowing the connecticut settlers to continue living there as pennsylvanians. There is not a good deal of reading material on this dispute. However if you want to read more my book recommendation. This week is a biography. It's called zebulon butler. Hero of the revolutionary frontier by linda. A fosler and james r williamson sabio on butler of course was the leader of the connecticut. Defenders in the events described in this episode. He was also involved in the ongoing disputes for many years. Both before and after the events. I covered today. His biography covers these events in more detail. The book came out in nineteen ninety-five. But it's pretty hard to find already. It's also less than two hundred pages and more than a third of those pages are taken up by notes and index so. It's not a huge amount of content. But it is very well researched and gives the best window. I can find into the longstanding fighting between pennsylvania and connecticut settlers in the wyoming valley. So if he can find a copy zevulon butler is worth a read. My online recommendation is an e book available on archive dot. Org called the massacre of wyoming. The acts of congress for the defence of the wyoming valley pennsylvania. Seventeen seventy six to seventeen seventy eight with petitions of the sufferers by the massacre of july third. Seventeen seventy eight for congressional aide as you can probably guess by that lengthy title. This relatively short work contains original petitions of victims and other legislative proposals regarding the massacre of these gives some good firsthand descriptions of events even if written many years later and with a bias toward receiving government assistance. The booklet was assembled from various sources for the wyoming historical and geological society in eighteen ninety five. It's an interesting resource based on the testimony of those who were there for this relatively obscure event as always you can search for the document on archive dot org or just use the direct link that have included at the bottom of the blog entry for this episode to blog dot amriyev podcast dot com for more details. Well that's offer this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
ARP219 Turning General Arnold
"This week's episode is brought to you by liberty and co. i've mentioned before that liberty co is a great source of american revolution themed items. It's list of products is always expanding. Some of its newest products. Include a line of canvas tote bags and pillows featuring some of our founding fathers these are high quality items made from one hundred percent cotton they are printed and so in the us specifically bucks county pennsylvania where liberty and co is located. These are great products for personal use or as gifts while supplies last liberty and co is offering free victory or death shot glasses for any order over forty dollars. It also donates a portion of its profits to the museum of the american revolution in philadelphia. It always offers free shipping and you can get a fifteen percent discount if you use the coupon code azarov. That's a m. are ev. Go to liberty and dot co. that's liberty a. n. d. dot co for more details alot. Thank you for joining the american revolution this week. Episode to nineteen turning general arnold. We last left benedict arnold in april. Seventeen seventy nine. He just bought a mansion in philadelphia and mary the eighteen year. Old peggy shippen. He had resigned. The military governorship of philadelphia as the supreme executive council pennsylvania under president joseph reed had accused him of misusing his office for personal gain. The continental congress had already dismissed most of the charges levied by pennsylvania. Much of public opinion seemed to be arles favor. Many view the accusations as one of the army's greatest leaders being taken down by politicians for some minor accounting problems arnold was looking forward to a quick court martial that would acquit him of the remaining charges and allow him to return to duty. Washington scheduled the court martial hearings to begin on may first seventeen seventy nine. The supreme executive council of pennsylvania led by president. Joseph reed had issued the charges and did not want to see them swept under the rug read wrote to washington telling him that he did not want a cursory hearing and demanded delay so that the council could gather. It's witnesses read further threatened to prevent the continental army's use of any state wagons for transport of supplies if the army did not comply as a result. Washington delayed the hearing until june. I during this time. Arnold traveled to middlebrook new jersey for the hearings but just as they were about to get underway the british attack up the hudson river that led to the battle of stony point lead to yet another delay repeated delays would mean the hearings would not actually begin until december twenty third on may fifth just a few days after the first delay. Arnold express his frustration in a letter to washington. Arnold new the political game used to destroy great men. You make accusations then you let those accusations hanging over them for months or even years without clearing them up. Arnold had to look no further than aghast in his own home silas deane for an example of this team had been fighting with congress for more than a year to clear his name and with no end in sight. Dean would leave later that year sailing for france at his own expense in a futile attempt to find sufficient paperwork regarding his expenses that would satisfy congress. Arnold saw how genes political enemies had cut him down with innuendo rumors and baseless accusations in the press without any real effort to resolve the matter. It had destroyed. Deen's reputation and career aren't oke worried that he was headed down that very same path. In addition to his reputation arnold had growing money problems following his resignation as military governor of pennsylvania. Arl had no income opportunities beyond the base pay of continental paper money that he received as a major general he had just purchased a mansion for his bride heavily mortgaged and had to rent a second house. Since the minister of spain was still living in the home that he had just purchased. Arnold's new wife came from a wealthy home and expected to live a lifestyle that came at a hefty cost over the summer. Arnold sister. Hannah came to philadelphia with his three sons ages. Seven through eleven. They also moved into arnold's house making it a pretty crowded place. The children got into trouble and did not get along well with their new stepmother is oldest child had gotten in trouble with the town watch. Eventually arnold decided to ship the three boys off to boarding school in baltimore incurring another expense that he could not afford. Peggy also became pregnant meaning an even larger family to support. Arnold failed at difficult to engage in any trade in philadelphia. No one wanted to enter into business with him. While the supreme executive council was breathing down his neck local merchants knew that a partnership with arnold would only bring more government scrutiny on themselves while he had been no -tary governor. Arnold made a secret deal with gideon olmstead to help him win the case against pennsylvania over the captured sloop active which i discussed back in episode two of nine arnold had hoped at his share the prize money from that case would help to keep him solvent and not only did the case not settle all had to spend another five thousand pounds sterling on olmstead and his shipmates in order to keep them from selling even more shares in the collection effort. Arl had to do this because he did not want word to get around to more people about his deal. Especially while his court marshal was still pending. This deal would appear to the public as part of the corruption for personal benefit that he was trying to fight. If homestead took on more partners they would have to disclose the deal with arnold therefore the agreement only continued to cost more money if only to keep it quiet as his financial situation became more desperate. Arnold submitted a bill for five thousand pounds sterling for the nine months that he had served as military governor and said that he needed to be paid immediately in order to cover expenses until he was reinstated to a new command. That chairman of the treasury board argued that the amount arnold saw it was too high. Congress appointed a special committee to examine the matter. They offered to pay arnold about half of what he had requested to pay in continental paper meaning that he would be getting about ten percent of what he requested. Arnold refused to accept the settlement. Meaning that he got nothing while the committee put the claim on hold for further auditing while he was facing all these troubles in the spring of seventeen. Seventy nine arnold was stewing about is delayed hearing and his money problems. A young man asked to speak with him privately at his home the man who appeared in civilian clothing introduced himself as christopher hell of the royal navy hell had attempted to deliver a peace proposal from carlisle commission in october. Seventeen seventy eight. As his ship sailed up the delaware under a flag of truce. It crashed and wrecked with several of the crew killed lieutenant. Hell escaped the wreck. Only to be captured. Several days later by local militia. Despite the fact that was under a flag of truce congress held him as a prisoner of war. After passing a rule that anyone who attempted to release seditious materials would be held regardless of any flag of truce the fact that congress passed this law about a week after hell was captured and the fact that an enemy officer delivering a peace proposal to congress should not be considered. Sedition did not seem to help hells case. In any event hell had been given parole and was living in philadelphia for the past six months on his visit to see arnold hell was not there to discuss any of his personal situation after introducing himself and trying to make a bit of small talk. Hell produced a sealed envelope place in the envelope. On arnold's desk hell told the general you know as well as i do general that both sides are weary of this long war. What is needed. Sir is a man of decision someone with character and power to step forward and bring this tragic conflict to an end with fat. Hell turned and took his leave. The note was from colonel. Beverley robinson of new york. Robinson was the son of former virginia speaker. John robinson whose death in seventeen sixty six had caused a financial scandal that i addressed way back in episode twenty five prior to that beverley had been married and moved to new york where he owned a large estate. Robinson had been friends with washington when the two men were younger. Washington even visited robinson on several occasions before the war and according to some accounts washington even had a crush on robinson sister-in-law mary phillips when the british occupied new york robinson through in with the loyalists he raised a loyal american regiment and became a colonel in seventeen seventy nine. Colonel robinson was serving in new york under general sir henry clinton. The letter spoke in generalities about the horror and futility of the war. It suggested that an american general who would be greatly rewarded if he could be part of an effort to end the war and help. Reestablish the king's rule over the colonies. The letter gave no specific proposal and did not suggest that arnold simply switched sides and joined the british army rather. This was part of a larger efforts to try to turn some american leaders who might be able to sway public opinion in favor of negotiated peace and return to colonial status. A british intelligence was well aware of arnold money problems his resignation as military commander philadelphia and his ongoing legal battle in pennsylvania. It saw this as an opportunity to approach one of the continental army's top generals and perhaps convince him to lead his country. Back to the king's authority. Arnold was partly the first prominent leader to be approached. The british had made a concerted effort to turn opinion leaders to their side. This was nothing. New kings back in england often stayed in power during difficult times through offers of money land and titles rewarding powerful men for loyalty and punishing opponents. Brutally was the key to any monarchs survival. Efforts in america tried to follow this same gambit. I've already discussed in earlier episodes efforts to get commodore john berry to switch sides. I've also mentioned attempted bribes to members of congress including robert morris francis dana and arnold's rival in philadelphia. Joseph read all of these men turned down these overtures and made them public very quickly. Unlike those other men general arnold did not immediately reject or expose the offer. For the prior year arnold had been hanging out in tori social circles around philadelphia that is what in fact incurred the wrath of the radicals. The people in arnold social circle had long believed that permanent independence from power. Such as britain was an impossibility at some point there was going to be a negotiated peace. America simply was not powerful enough nor united enough to govern itself from their view taking down a top general like arnold on minor ethics charges or cheating him out of compensation. We're some of the many examples of why the current leadership was incapable of maintaining a government arnold's experience with the continental congress and state governments over the years supported this argument. It made him susceptible to the idea. That government lacked the maturity and experience to maintain a stable power structure and that absent a return of the king's piece the end result would be chaos and civil war eventually followed by a reinstatement of the king. At some later time and even worse scenario would be to come under the control of the king of france who many colonists despised and distrusted even more than king. George france did not have the tradition of personal liberties that americans were fighting to sustain. Arnold had carried a lifelong hatred of the french for the massacre of his friends and neighbors. At fort william henry during the french indian war arnold inner thoughts at this time or not recorded we can only speculate on what combination of tory defeatism anger at the charges against him and his continued money. Problems all weighed on arnold as he read robinson's note. There is some evidence that arnold discussed the matter with his new wife. Peggy according to one account. Peggy admitted to a friend that she had encouraged her husband to change sides and helped introduce him to contacts. That made continued negotiation with the british leadership possible. Ah possibly through peggy or through others in the ship and family arnold soon contacted. Joseph stands bury a suspected loyalist. Stanbury had only emigrated to philadelphia from london a decade earlier iran a china shop and was also known for writing humorous and satirical songs although he expressed sympathy with many of the early colonial protests he opposed independence and was imprisoned by the patriots. For part of seventeen seventy six. I singing god. Save the king at a party in his home. During the british occupation of philadelphia stanbury served in several minor roles that supported the british army after the british evacuation stands berry was one of those loyalists who decided to take his chances in philadelphia. He signed an oath of allegiance to pennsylvania moved out of town to live with relatives in moorestown new jersey and kept his head down. Despite his newly professed loyalty many people including arnold believed that he still had contact with the british army in new york. He frequently visited philadelphia on business and was also able to travel to new york. Within days of arnold receiving robinson's letter stanford traveled to new york city. Where he met with major john andre. The two men discussed arnold's willingness to play ball if they could work out acceptable arrangements. Andre gave arnold the codename monk which was a reference to george monk. There i duke of albermarle general monk had been a scottish military leader during the civil war century earlier. Monk had supported oliver cromwell during the era of the protectorate. However when charles the second return to britain to take the throne monk accepted an offer from charles and helped overthrow cromwell son richard and restore the house of stuart to the throne for his services. Monk was absolved of his former treason and richly rewarded by king charles second including a peerage and a generous pension. I think it's easy to see how the british saw or hope there would be some parallel between monks behavior. I portraying his king and then being a key turning point in bringing the king back into power and what. They were hoping that arnold would do for them in the coming year by this time. Major andrei had taken a position as deputy adjutant general under henry clinton and had been put in charge of britain's secret service in america at the recommendation of andres commander general charles grey his new role primarily focused on intelligence and handling spies. Honore also new. Arnold's wife peggy from his time in philadelphia although some modern speculation that the two were linked romantically anything beyond superficial flirtations. Seems to be without evidence. Arnold though began a correspondence with both benedict. And peggy arnold. He adopted the pseudonym john anderson a'merchant he would often write letters that appeared to be about business deals but which had coded messages including lines in invisible ink to avoid detection much of the correspondence that took place between andrei and stands berry. Who would then relay the messages to arnold. once he established communications with arnold andrei began discussions with general clinton. Although andre was the correspondent he made clear that clinton was making the decisions about how to proceed at the outset. Andre wanted arnold to provide intelligence troop movements the condition of the army or other details. That would be helpful. Not only would this be helpful to the british it also provided verifiable proof that art was truly planning to break with the patriots. It also put general arnold in a position where he was very clearly committing treason and could not back out of it very easily. Although stands berry told andrei at their first meeting that arnold had made pretty clear that he was prepared to defect. And join the british. Andre wanted to make the best use of this valuable asset over the next few months arnold would provide intelligence arnold provided information about washington. Moving us army up. The hudson valley also reported that the americans would not expand too many resources to defend charleston south carolina if the british attacked there. The men also discussed the terms of arnold's defection. Arnold wanted compensation for all the property that he would lose patriot. Governments would undoubtedly sees his home and other property. He also wanted compensation for the debts that he still believed the continental congress owed to him. You wanted a commission as a major general in the british army with full pay and benefits. All these terms were under discussion. Andre informed arnold bet if he were able to surrender an entire army or an important position as part of his defection that could result in a greater reward. He suggested that. Arnold tried to get command of an important post later that summer. Arnold was asking for assurances that the british did not plan to give up on winning. The war arlt feared that after he switched sides. The british might pull out of america entirely. Andre was not willing to provide detailed information about british plans. He did not say so. But there must have been a fear that arnold could be working as a double agent. The two men suggested several ways arnold by continue to assist the british without defecting. One was for armed Take command of an army. Lead it into a trap that could be captured. The british were still interested in the return of burgoyne convention. Army that was being held as prisoners. So if the british held a similarly sized army to exchange that might move along the process. If arnold gave up this army he might even be returned to the continentals with his fellow prisoners as part of the exchange and no one be the wiser to his treasonous activity as a reward. Arnold might receive a cash payment of ten to twelve thousand guineas. nothing seemed to come of the correspondence. Beyond some general intelligence that arnold provided about the positions of their armies their numbers and their conditions by the end of august. Seventeen seventy nine. The correspondence seemed to come to an end. Arlt may have been looking for an opportunity to provide a valuable prize for the british andrei. Made clear that the surrender of an entire army would mean more money. Arnold knew that he would not get a command until the court martial cleared him of any wrongdoing. So arnold was more eager than ever to get that court martial behind him despite his wishes. The scheduled for a hearing would continue to be delayed. Oh the plan seemed to go on. Hold until arnold received a new command one that the british would value greatly though sides put their discussions on. Hold until that could happen. Those opportunities would not come until the following year next week. We're going to return to south carolina. Where general benjamin. Lincoln continued his efforts to prevent the british army in georgia from marching north. Hi thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show to my patriot supporters in the alexander. Hamilton club trae. Nance george davis and george hunter. Thanks also to robert morris circle supporter. Mike hager if you enjoy this podcast. Please consider supporting it with an ongoing pledge of as little as two dollars per month it helps to keep this podcast freely available for those who cannot thanks also to michael mckenna and nicholas landry. Who provided one time gifts via pay pow or van mo. If you don't wanna make an ongoing pledge. I really do appreciate one time gifts. As well as always there are links to both pay pal then mo and other options on my website at www dot amr podcast dot com this week benedict. Arnold began taking his first steps toward betraying the patriot. Cause i've heard arguments that his court marshal result and the reprimand. He received from general washington as a result. Was the last straw. That really pushed arnold into joining the british however. I think today's episode made clear that arnold had made his decision months before he reached his court marshal. It's easy to condemn arnold for his treason. But the more interesting question for me is what would drive a man who already put forward his life his fortune his sacred honor to the cause to throw that away. It couldn't simply be greed as many charles. Detractors have claimed if all arnold was money throughout his life. Why did he become a general in the first place. Why not captain privateer ship. It seems to me that arnold must have decided that the patriot cause was ultimately doomed and that the british were going to win. It seems clear that arnold was of course putting his personal interests ahead of the country. Now this was not something that europeans would find unusual. I highlighted andres use of george monk as an analogous story in civil wars and domestic insurrections european landed gentry often hedged their bets and switched sides when it benefited them after all they had no real ideological reasons tobacco king other than self interest. The american caused though was different. People were fighting more for an idea than for personal power so when someone like arnold turned away from that ideal it made people quite understandably shocked and appalled but as i pointed out trying to turn rebels was standard practice for the british government. They'd been doing it for centuries if you want to read more about this. My book recommendation. This week is the secret history of the american revolution by carl van. Doren this book covers arnold's defection but it also goes into other details about british intelligence efforts in america. It's an older book. First published in nineteen forty one van dorn of course was an early twentieth century writer. Professor and book credit. The book should be in the public domain but the copy that exists on archive dot org is still listed as borrow ali. Despite the fact that it's an eighty year old book. I really think it's worth reading. You can use the link have provided to buy the book or just read it on archive dot org much event. Orange research for the book was based on the papers of general sir henry clinton which are housed at the university of michigan and that brings me to my online recommendation for the week. The william clements library at the university of michigan. The library was founded nearly a century ago when clements donated his rare books library to the school among its works are some really unique papers. From the american revolution. The library is still working on digitizing much of it and putting it online but it is a good and growing resource for any researcher as always i've included a link on my website. Www amr of podcast dot com. My question. this week comes from madison henderson. Who asks what kind of teeth to. George washington have well madison. We all know. Washington famously had bad teeth. There's a myth that he used wooden teeth as a replacement. And as far as i can tell there's no truth to that there's never been any evidence that he really used wooden teeth. Although some have speculated that his use of tobacco and wine may have stained some of his teeth to look that way a washington had bad teeth his whole life and some of his behavior may have contributed to that. I've read that he used calomel and his mouth which tends to wear down the teeth. He also brushed his teeth quite a bit but unfortunately the toothpaste that was used at the time had very hard great to it and tended to wear down the enamel on the outside of the teeth so despite his best efforts and probably his bad genes as well he started losing teeth at a very young age washington of course kept records of all his financial costs which include his dental costs. So that gives us some information about where he was with his situation. He had his first tooth pulled at age. Twenty four because of the pain. It was causing him. And by the time of his inauguration as president he only had one natural tooth left and he lost that one during the final year of his administration as i said he did brush his teeth regularly and did whatever he could to protect his teeth but he continued to suffer terrible tooth pain and regularly had to have teeth extracted throughout his adult life. As a result washington had quite a few sets. Dentures made over his lifetime. He tried having wired dentures that would connect to his remaining teeth. He also kept some of his pulled teeth for use in future dentures. The false teeth themselves were made from ivory or animal teeth. Some may have been horse teeth. That were filed down to human size. There are also records in his purchasing human teeth from as he calls them negroes presumably. These were slaves and teeth may have been used in dentures. He may have also attempted an eighteenth century. Notice a tooth transfer this process involved pulling a bad tooth while the bloody gap in the mouth was still open and raw. The dentist would take a good tooth from someone else and jam it into that whole hoping that the gum would he'll around it and hold the new tooth place. This unfortunately rarely worked but when they tried they had had a good tooth pulled at the same time that the bad tooth was pulled. So this leads to some of the speculation that he may have paid slaves to donate teeth to that effort. Denture work at the time was relatively crude They didn't have. Plastics are glues. That are used today instead. There was a frame that was made out of tin copper. Lead or gold. False teeth were often wired into place and held in these metal frames. There are records of him sending molds of his mouth to dentists for construction of custom dentures. But how good the ultimate product was in fitting with. His teeth is probably iffy while he was commander of the continental army washington consulted with a french dentist who was considered one of the top men in the field. He received several sets of dentures as gifts as well as the ones he purchased despite his wealth and prominence that technology at the time simply was not satisfactory the result was that he almost continually suffered from tooth aches mouth pain and other abscesses and had to deal with bad dentures throughout his adult life because of the danger of his dentures falling out while talking or eating washington is often portrayed as having clenched lips. Perhaps always worried about what would happen when he opened his mouth. If you have a question you would like me to answer please. Email me at 'em troy dot history at gmail.com or reach out on twitter facebook or other social media. Well that's offered this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
ARP171 Conway Cabal
"Hello, and thank you for joining the American Revolution today episode 171 the Conway cabal following the victory at Saratoga National ratio Gates was the toast of America the surrender of General. Burgoyne's Army was an unprecedented event gates had long thought that he was a better General than in Washington and had a history of looking for an opportunity to replace him as Commander in Chief in late 1777 with Gates credited with the victory at Saratoga and Washington losing Philadelphia to General how many others started to think that maybe Gates could be a better Commander the Conway cabal is the name given to a Loosely defined group of leaders in Congress and in the military who made some efforts to replace Washington with Gates as commander of the Continental Carmie Thomas Conway who is the title conspirator in this matter is probably not even the leading figure in the events that unfolded but he does play a role in these events. I've already introduced Conway as one of many French officers who arrived in Philadelphia in 1777 with Commissions in hand to become General in the Continental Army, although born in Ireland Conway moved to France at age six and became a lieutenant in the Irish Brigade of the French army age fourteen over the next Seventeen years. He served as a capable officer, but remained a lieutenant even through his service in Europe during the Seven Years War Iraq after the war ended Conway began to find his way up the promotion ladder finally making captain in 1765 then major and finally colonel in 17 dead. Me to Conway learned the political game of flattering superiors and making the right contacts to get ahead in the Army sing an opportunity for advancement in the revolution. He got a promised commission from Silas Deane and left for America in December. 1776. Congress gave him a commission as a brigadier General in May 1777 and Conway served as a brigadier commander in Washington's Army Conway seems to have impressed himself at the Battle of Brandywine based off his service there. He requested that Congress promote him to Major General Washington objected to the promotion in a letter to delegate Richard Henry Lee Washington wrote quote General Conway's Merit then as an officer and his importance in the Army exists more in his own imagination than in reality job. Washington pointed out that Conway's promotion over more senior brigadiers who had also performed well in recent battles would lead to more dissension among the military leadership off earlier Washington had endorsed Conway's commission as a brigadier. So this was a very different attitude. He was showing Washington's reluctance to support Conway's bid off promotion led to a tiff between these two leaders with Washington appearing to be an impediment to his advancement Conway opted to reach out to General Gates wage star was on the rise after Saratoga in early November 1777 weren't reached Washington that Conway had written a letter to Gates saying quote Heaven has been determined to save your country or a week General and bad counselors would have ruined it now. It doesn't take much imagination to realize that the dog We General was an obvious reference to General Washington when Washington received the note. He sent it along to Conway noting the quote Conway denied that he had ever used the term week General but did not shy away from the fact that he was critical of Washington's leadership. The original letter has been lost. So we'll never know exactly what it said Henry Laurens who did read the original letter before it was lost said in a letter to a friend that Will consent did not get the quote verbatim. But that found ways original letter was quote ten times worse in every way the matter might have ended there but when General Gates received word that Washington had received information from his private correspondence, he wrote an angry letter to Washington in December saying that it was outrageous that someone had been going through his private correspondence. And demanded that Washington find out who had committed this invasion of privacy Advocates did not name names in his letter, but it became clear later that he's aspect of the culprit was Alexander Hamilton recall last week. I talked about how Hamilton had ridden up to Gates as headquarters in New York in November to facilitate Gates moving. Some wage is Army South to assist Washington gate suspected that Hamilton had rifled through his papers while in Albany and reported this information back to Washington Hamilton was in his sickbed in Peekskill when this whole matter erupted as it turned out Hamilton had absolutely nothing to do with it word had gotten to Washington from other officers who had heard this quote at a dinner with Gates his personal aide Colonel James, Wilkinson. It seems that when Wilkinson was taken his good old time travelling from Albany to York, Pennsylvania to bring were to Congress of the victory at Saratoga. He had let slip this gossip Wilkinson had dined with several officers including General Lord Stirling and his Aid major James Monroe after a few drinks. He had quoted a few Choice excerpts from the letter which Gates had read aloud to his aides when Washington filled in Gates about the real source of the information Gates need to put aside his efforts to shift the conversation from who leaked letter to instead dealing with the substance of the correspondence again, though, that could have been the end of the matter. It was odd. First time Washington had heard about subordinates who had wrote letters that were critical of his leadership or that he knew other generals who had some interest in thinking they could wage A better job as Commander in Chief. The problem was that there were many powerful leaders in Congress who did not want this incident to go away after this incident blew up concrete General Conway offered his resignation to Congress on November 14th, instead of accepting his resignation Congress granted Conway his desired promotion to Major General on top of that Congress recognized the board of War around this same time in a way that appears to have been designed as an insult to General Washington thought there was a board of War prior to this time. John Adams had been running it in November. However Adams resigned his seat in Congress and return home to Massachusetts Congress at that point decided that perhaps soldiers rather than delegates should be running a board of War. They named General Horatio Gates as the new president of the board Major General Thomas Mifflin who had recently been removed as quartermaster general of the Continental Army wage also sat on the board now having Military Officers on this board created an obvious problem Gates and Mifflin were both military subordinates to General Washington get their position on the board gave them the ability to give orders to Washington many in Congress including the recently departed. John Adams had come to the position that Gates would probably be a better military commander than Washington other powerful members of this group of thinking were Samuel Adams James Lovell Andrew and Henry Lee another former member of Congress Benjamin Rush was also an outspoken critic of Washington and seriously considered his replacement. Brush wrote several letters including one two, governor Patrick Henry saying so in December in addition to promoting General Conway Congress approved his enchantment as Inspector General of the Army in this position Conway also, put second-guess and attack General Washington with impunity after receiving his promotion Conway met with Washington at Valley Forge in late December as was typical with someone who had disrespected him Washington met Conway with a cold bath. Ality Conway's ego by this time in full bloom took offense at Washington's treatment. He wrote a letter to Washington basically saying that the cold reception that he got indicated that Washington was unhappy about all this and apparently unwilling to work with the new Inspector General. Conway said that he had better things to do in France and had no reason to stick around in America if Washington would not support him. Now. As I said many saw all this happening congress's new board of War and the inspector-general and much of the correspondence o as an attempt to insult Washington in hopes that maybe he would simply resign and go home in January 1778 Congress also received a pamphlet called thoughts of a Freeman and I have a link to the original document in my blog. If you could check it out this pamphlet criticized Washington's leadership during the Philadelphia campaign and warned that the people were holding him up as a false idol. This again was another attempt to discredit Washington in addition to attacking his military decisions the document implied that Washington was taking on an irrational popularity wage. The masses and that this posed a danger to Congress it played into the common fear that a military leader would rise up like Oliver Cromwell or Caesar home who would overthrow the legislature and become a dictator both Washington's lack of military success, especially when compared with Gates and the danger that he was becoming too powerful a leader contributed to the growing opposition to him in Congress it increased the desire of many to remove him and replace him. The new board of War went ahead and met in York in December and January to discuss future plans in doing so they largely ignored Washington and planned a new invasion of Canada. The thing was that with burgoyne's army out of action a new assault on Quebec would succeed following burgoyne's surrender the British had abandoned Fort Ticonderoga in New Jersey. Bur destroying most of it and retreating back into Canada. Once again, the Gibraltar of North America fell without even a battle fought if they could launch an attack before spring when the British might send reinforcements to Quebec. They might take the region and win the support of the locals General guy Carleton still commanded an army of thousands in Quebec most of the New York and New England militia who had one Saratoga did not really want to invade Quebec the massive losses suffered by those armies that had invaded in 1775. We're still too fresh in the minds of militiamen despite these concerns Gates and the board of War. Can I change to the new plan to invade Quebec with the Marquis De Lafayette leading the new conquering Army? The board gave second in command to General Thomas Conway board members thought that the Marquis would be a figurehead given that the twenty year old former French Captain would offer to the more experienced General Conway by placing French generals at the head of the army the board hope that the french-speaking subjects of Quebec would rally around the this Army of Liberation the board also added General John Stark as third in command in hopes of getting more New England militia in favor of the attack, even the game plan itself was tentative Lafayette received instructions to invade Saint Johns and to capture the ships and dockyards there. At that point only if he could win the support of the locals to join the American cause he should proceed further. If not, he was to burn Saint Johns and pull back to New York Congress approved this plan in late January Gates's Board of War informed Washington of the planned Invasion and requested that he deployed some of his army jobs Albany to participate Washington in a private letter a couple of weeks later called the plan the quote child of folly and really I thought it was going to be a mess but he kept his mouth shut and complied with the board's directives since the board did not ask for his advice on the matter Washington did not offer it off immediately the project began to fly off the rails first the assumption that Lafayette would defer to Conway prove terribly wrong. Lafayette traveled to York where he dined with General Gates and other top officers on his first night back in town at the end of the meal the men offered a series of toasts Lafayette noticed the conspicuous absence of any toast to General Washington. So he offered one himself his toast met with confused silence and took him to understand just how much this group was seeking to undermine the commander-in-chief next Lafayette appeared before Congress to oppose. The board's decision of Conway as second-in-command Lafayette demanded that General Johann DeKalb be given that role Congress complied and Conway once again found himself on the outs in Lafayette traveled to Albany where he found an army of less than 1,000 men. Some of them boys as young as twelve and old men above the age of 60 further there were no supplies equipment or even clothing to conduct a winter campaign, even if they could gather the necessary men quickly Gates had told Lafayette that General starrk would probably have already taken sent John's by the time Lafayette to Albany instead Lafayette found a letter from start asking him. When would he like to get started and how many men he might need Stark did not say so but like most likely ticked off months earlier General Gates had promised dark would command this invasion of Canada. Now finding himself in third in command behind to fraud officers probably left start less excited about the mission Lafayette consulted with other Generals in the area including Philip Schuyler Benjamin, Lincoln and birth. Doctoral with the exception of General Conway who had joined the group without having a command and who was eager to proceed the other generals all believed that this was headache for disaster after determining that there was no way for the Army to assemble the necessary soldiers and supplies and time Lafayette wrote back to Congress saying that he would not proceed now as I said Washington had remained silent through all of this, but he was not ready to fade quietly into the night. He knew that any couple of power-play opposing the Inspector General or the board of war or any of their plans with just play into the hands of his enemies and convince people that he was a danger to civilian rule instead Washington just through the whole thing back at Congress. He despatched the correspondence that had gone between himself and General Conway as well as correspondence with General Gates dead. Out the revelation of Conway's comments to him and sending this information to Congress. He said the following quote if General Conway means by cool receptions that I did not receive him in the language of a warm and cordial friend. I readily confessed the charge. My feelings will not permit me to make professions of friendship to a man ID My Enemy at the same time truth authorizes me to say that he was received and treated with proper respect to his official character and that he has no cause to justify the assertion that he could not expect any support for fulfilling the duties of his appointment. So Washington found that while he had his critics in Congress, he also had supporters and one of those key supporters was the new president of Congress Henry Lawrence. Communications with his son John Laurens who was serving as Washington's aide-de-camp held president Lawrence to appreciate everything Washington was doing and thought he was going through following Washington's letters came on Memorial sent by 9:00 Continental brigadiers who objected to General Conway being promoted over them just as Washington predicted in addition a group of Colonels protested Wilkinson's brevet to Brigadier over more senior kernels with more command experience saying the strong objections from the military leadership and also after reviewing the correspondence that made Gates Conway and Wilkinson all look, like fools any support for replacing General Washington office quickly evaporated Gates and Conway both testified before Congress, but gave a poor performance the Marquis De Lafayette took it upon himself to speak on behalf of birth. France before Congress. He said that the French viewed Washington and the revolution as one in the same. They could not conceive of another General taking command numerous other Continental officers also sent letters to Congress confirming that Washington had their full faith and support as commander-in-chief with Washington's role as Commander. Now firmly re-established everyone tried to make nice again members of Congress at least silenced their opposition to Washington having decided that Gates would be no improvement General Gates wrote a series of letters to Washington trying to repair their relationship Washington seem to think that gates at least was a good General and made an effort to put the matter behind them gauge signed from the board of war in the spring and took up a command in New England. There he would remain away from Washington and most of the actions of the war for the next few years when Gates discovered that Wilkinson was behind the revelation of Conway's letters took him the two men got into a huge fight. Not only had Wilkinson started this whole mess by revealing this information to officers loyal to Washington Wilkinson had also denied the gates that he had done it instead. He tried to blame one of cases other AIDS Gates had good reason to be angry at his age poor judgement and dishonesty. He went off on a piece of tirade against the young man and according to Wilkinson's later Recollections. The encounter ended up with Wilkinson challenging gates to a duel and Gates accepting calls at this time ordinarily commanding officers did not dual with those under their command. But in this case gate seemed ready to resolve their dispute on the field of Honor. Before the duel could take place though, the two men reconciled and put the issue behind them at this point Gates was still serving on the board of war and Wilkinson had become the board secretary off a short time later Wilkinson read some of the letters that Gates had written to others regarding Wilkinson's role in all of this Wilkinson, then wrote a letter to Congress accusing Gates off of quote treachery and falsehood. He said he could not serve as secretary with Gates as president of the board Congress accepted his resignation. And for the next couple of years Will consent did not have any official duties within the Army several months later both gates and Wilkinson appeared as Witnesses at the court-martial of General Sinclair. The two men got into it again. And once again agreed to a duel this time, they actually went through with it firing three rounds at each other without any hits before they decide that their honor had been satisfied most of the public blame for the effort to unseat Washington fell on General Conway, officially Conway continued to serve as inspector-general, although he really did not have much to do in that position Congress tried to transfer him to a position in the Hudson Valley where he would be out of the action save the appointment correctly as political Exile and realizing that he was pretty well isolated and hated by most of his fellow officers under Washington's command Conway. Once again submitted an offer of resignation to Congress in March 1778. This time Congress accepted after resigning Conway did not return to France dead. Instead he spent his time criticizing Washington and trying to justify his actions later that summer one of Washington's supporters, Philadelphia. Militia General John Cadwallader challenged Conway to a duel in Philadelphia at the Dual Cadwallader shot Conway in the mouth cadwalader's only comment upon schuberth Conway was I've stopped that damn Rascals tongue. Anyway believing that he was about to die Conway wrote a letter of apology to Washington calling him as a great and good man Conway. However did not die but did decide it was time to return to France where he rejoined the French army Washington came out of this whole incident much stronger talking Congress of replacing the commander never again approached anything serious Those who had opposed Washington muted their complaints and tried to minimize or deny their past opposition to his leadership next week. I want to cover some other incidents happen around this same time that Washington was fighting for his political and Military survival. His army was fighting for its own Survival during the winter had Valley Forge. Hi, thanks for joining the American Revolution podcast after show. Thanks as always to train aunts and George Davis as Alexander Hamilton club supporters on patreon. I also wanted to thank Jason patriot who is already a standard-bearer supporter on patreon, but who also made a generous one-time contribution a PayPal. I very much appreciate the support this week. I covered the Conway cabal, which as I said in the main show was not really a conspiracy facts was more of a disjointed and uncoordinated effort to replace Washington as commander-in-chief. It didn't even become known as a cabal until decades after these events occurred when historians gave that name to the events. It's Not Unusual for lower officers to think they can do a better job than the current commander on the British side, I've already discussed how generals how Clinton and Burgoyne expressed or implied such attitudes against their commanders given Washington's limited Military success and especially when compared with the success attributed to gates at Saratoga wage. I suppose it's understandable that government leaders might want to at least consider their options the namesake of the cabal General Conway was of course only looked get promoted to Major General a goal which he achieved. Let's face it. You don't get to be a general without some ability at self-promotion. Of course when you push too hard if she can come back to bite you after Conway shot off his mouth about Washington someone literally shot him in the mouth. Following the collapse of the cabal more sensible generals like Horatio Gates kept their mouths shut about Washington and quietly waited for other opportunities to present themselves off General Conway did finally returned to France after his duel, although he had been a colonel in France. He continued to rise in rank in the French army after his return from America, but eventually reaching the rank of major-general in the French army as well. He also eventually served as governor of France's colonies in India. Not too shabby for an Irishman. Unfortunately things did not end happily for Conway during the French Revolution Conway maintain his loyalty to the king and eventually had to flee from France in order to avoid execution as a counter-revolutionary. Ironically Conway who had spent his entire life fighting the British returned to Britain and fought under the British against the Revolutionary government in France off eventually his life went full circle and General Conway retired to his native Ireland. He fell Into Obscurity in Ireland but is believed to have died around 1,800 at the age of 65. If you want to read more about the cabal there is a book on just that topic that came out last year 2019. It's called off all the plot against General Washington by Mark Edward lender. This is a really in-depth look at the events of late 1777 and early 1778 when command of Washington's Army was really at risk. The book is nearly four hundred pages long and is a really careful investigation of the efforts to replace Washington the author Mark lender retired from a long career in Academia, but continues to write books. He's also a contributor to the Journal of the American Revolution. If you don't want to read the whole book on the topic, you might want to try my home line recommendation this week shortly after doctor lender released his book on the cabal. He sat down with Brady kreitzer on his podcast dispatches, which is a if we ended with the Journal of the American Revolution lender and Chrysler had a great 50 minute conversation about the events of the Conway cabal, which he released as an episode on a dispatch is podcast. I'll be on this one episode. I can't say enough good things about the dispatches podcast. I've recommended it more generally in an earlier episode. One reason I've actually been reluctant to start doing Special interview episodes myself is because Brady creates are already does such an amazing job doing this very thing if I have not tried his podcast you may want to do so, of course as always I have links to both the book and the podcast episode on my website and the blog at block off amref podcast.com. Well, that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week for another American Revolution podcast off.
Episode 153 Staten Island and Setauket
"Thank you for joining the American Revolution Today episode one fifty three. Staten Island and talk it. A few weeks ago I talked about General House decision to put most of his army aboard ship and sail out to sea. No one was sure where he would land, but most thought the ultimate destination was Philadelphia. When the fleet sailed away from New, York City in late, July seventeen, seventy seven. How left General Henry Clayton in command of the city with a few soldiers, most of whom were Haitians or local militia. General! How wanted his best combat soldiers with him for the Conquest of Philadelphia? In preparation for the removal of so many troops from New York, city, the British abandoned the even tiny tow- holds across the Hudson River in New Jersey which they had held a winter. Places like Elizabeth, town and boy and Brunswick. Although this meant completely abandoning, New Jersey the British did not want to leave any isolated outposts. That could be subject to attack. Putting the Hudson River between the two armies was a pretty substantial barrier for any army to cross. The river was deep enough at all points that no army could Ford it from New Jersey to New York. British forces. However, we're still spread out all over New York City area. including the occupation of all of Long Island Staten Island and Manhattan Island. This was probably about two thousand square miles of land, being guarded by only a few thousand dollars. With, the departure of House fleet, even holding that New York City area left some units relatively isolated and in areas, potentially vulnerable to attack. After a slow start that spring mid August saw a flurry of activity. General, Burgoyne S- northern army had reached the Hudson. River. General Saint Leger was beginning to besiege for Stan wicks and Washington was still desperately searching for where General House fleet was headed. As. Washington moved around the Philadelphia area, trying to get intelligence on General House Army Major General John Sullivan commanded the army, keeping an eye on General Clinton in New York City. Sullivan you may recall had been captured during the battle of Long Island a year earlier. Then exchanged at the end of seventeen, seventy, six in time to command Washington's right wing at the battle of Trenton. Over the Winter Sullivan remained with Washington near Morristown in New Jersey as Americans contented with the British over northern New Jersey in the forage war. Sullivan maintained an independent command after Washington took the bulk of the army south towards Philadelphia in search of general how? Sullivan expected that at some point Washington would determine that how was headed for Philadelphia or some other point further south? Once confirmed the bulk of the army, remaining in northern new, Jersey would march to support the main army. In the meantime sold and soldiers mostly remained in camp just in case, the enemy in New York conducted another raid into new. Jersey. Or in the event, that General House Fleet returned to New York City. Although the British had given up their camps northern. New Jersey Tory militia stationed on Staten Island still conducted raids into the area, looking for prisoners and supplies. Sullivan learned that these loyalist raiders operated from along the western edge of Staten Island just across the river from New Jersey. Totaling between four hundred and seven hundred militia accounts differ. These loyalists were not all in one place. But they were scattered in groups of between one hundred and hundred and fifty soldiers per camp. Also on Staten Island. There were an estimated sixteen, hundred or so British regulars stationed up at the northeastern edge of the island, facing Manhattan. Sullivan and his officers developed a plan to land about two thousand soldiers on Staten Island surround and capture the isolated militia outfits camped there then bring back their prisoners and supplies to New Jersey before the larger camp of British regulars could learn of the raid and react to defend the island. The Americans would land two separate forces totaling about one thousand men each on different parts of the island. General William Smallwood would command one of the forces. Smallwood was an experienced officer who had distinguished himself as Colonel Commanding Maryland regiments during the New York campaign. Woods Maryland. Regiment had proven itself in battle and taken very heavy casualties while fighting the rearguard action at the battle of long. Island that allowed so many other American regiments to escape. Capture. Colonel. Smallwood was not with his regiment that day because he had been called to court martial duty in Manhattan, he did however lead his regiment with distinction in subsequent battles during the same campaign, and was wounded at the battle of white plains. While recovering from his wounds over the Winter Congress promoted him to Brigadier General and sent him back to Maryland to recruit more volunteers. He returned to serve under Sullivan's command. Sullivan ordered smallwood to lead a division that would row across the river from Elizabeth New Jersey and land near the northern tip of Staten Island. General Sullivan selected. To bore to lead the second division. I mentioned in an earlier episode that divorce, one of the first French officers to reach America with one of those commissions from Silas. Deane in Paris. Before Congress got involved with these commissions it enthusiastically commission to bore as a Brigadier General and backdated his commission so that he would have seniority over more than a dozen other recently promoted continental brigadier generals. Up until this time to bore had not seen much action in America. He had joined Washington at Morristown in May have played a minor role at the battle of Short Hills. The attack on Staten Island General Sullivan had to board take his division across the Hudson River landing on the west coast of the island, where his army would round up and surround loyalists and ship them back to New Jersey. The Americans wrote across the Hudson River in the predawn hours to avoid detection. The continentals assembled and marched inland the two divisions rating several Tory militia outposts as planned. The plan of action was hit and run raids, taking militia prisoners, and bringing them back to a ferry, which was near a tavern, called old blazing star on the west coast of the island. From there, the continentals would ship the prisoners back to New Jersey and hold them as prisoners of war. The morning landing at initial attacks went as planned. Colonel Matthias Ogden reported a sharp firefight against loyalist outpost where he took eighty prisoners. Is forced then retreated back to old blazing star ferry, and removed the soldiers and prisoners back to New Jersey. Generals Sullivan and Deboer took a larger force of the continentals to attack the larger loyalist outpost under the command of Skinner's Brigade. This loyalist brigade was named after its commander. Brigadier General Cortlandt skinner. A, New Jersey loyalist, now serving as a militia commander for the Tory army on Staten Island. Their outpost was under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Joseph Barton. In this case, the loyalists detected the continental attack and fled into the woods and swamps before their attackers could capture them. The Americans did capture about forty prisoners including Colonel Barton. Some of the soldiers chased retreating loyalists all the way back to general skinner's headquarters. There a stiff defense from the larger. Garrison force them to, back off. At the same time General Smallwood took a separate force led by a local guide. Their goal was to get behind the loyalist force on the northern coast commanded by lieutenant. Colonel Abraham Van buskirk. He was another North Jersey Tori who led a militia regiment. His Regiment had moved to Staten Island after the British had left New Jersey. Although general smallwood had hoped to attack this group from the rear their guide, either through incompetence or more likely Tory leanings led the Americans right to the front of the loyalist defenses. Nevertheless General Smallwood ordered a charge. The surprise loyalists fled their camp, allowing Americans to plunder their supplies and capture the enemy standard. By mid morning. The raid seem to be going pretty well for the Americans. They began moving back toward their designated retreat point at the old blazing star ferry. The divisions met up at Richmond which was a village in the center of Staten Island and marched together back to the ferry. That's where things started to break down. General Sullivan had expected to find a fleet of boats that had carried his army to the island to be waiting there ready for him to move back his prisoners to New Jersey. Instead, the boats were not there. They only had three smaller boats, which would require multiple trips and many hours to transport the soldiers across the river. In the meantime loyalist militia general skinner had rallied and organized militia that had fled during the morning. He began marching a column to go after the Americans. Similarly the regulars who are on the island had by this time received word of the attacks. British General John Campbell led a column of nearly a thousand regulars and Hashes on a march after the American raiders. As the Americans attempted to cross their soldiers and prisoners at old blazing star ferry. The enemy arrived and engage them. General Sullivan deployed in rearguard of two companies totally between eighty and a hundred men to hold off the enemy, while the rest of the Americans did their best to escape across the river. By about five PM. The Americans had managed to evacuate all of their forces. Except for the small rearguard that had been covering their escape. Sullivan attempted to extract the rearguard, however, the boats he deployed refused to come near shore for fear of taking enemy fire. By this time, the British had brought up artillery and could fire on the boats from the shore. The frame! Pilots tried to return to New Jersey. The Americans on the Jersey coast fired on the boats in order to force the pilots to go back to Staten Island and pick up their retreating comrades. As a result, the pilots simply sat in the middle of the river, trying to avoid fire from either side. Eventually the men in the rear guard. Ammunition. The much larger British and loyalist force overran their position capturing about half the American defenders still on the island. The rest of the soldiers jumped into the Hudson River and swam across to new. Jersey Overall the Americans considered the rate of failure. The British had managed to capture about one hundred and fifty of the raiders. Although the British commander reported to his superiors that he had captured two hundred and fifty nine. The Americans lost about ten killed and twenty wounded. General Sullivan reported to Washington that he held about one hundred fifty enemy prisoners. Although he's kind of vague on whether. All of them were captured on this raid. It appears that many were not and had been captured earlier. The British reported only eighty nine missing after the raid with another five killed and seven wounded. General Sullivan would later face a court martial over complaints that the raid was not properly organized that the goals of the raid did not justify the risk that the evacuation of the island was bungled, and that exhausted soldiers were marched away without a chance to rest in New Jersey after the battle. The Court Martial would acquit Sullivan Oval. Charges and he would continue with his reputation intact. On the very same day as Sullivan's raid on Staten Island August twenty second. The continentals conducted a second raid on Long Island. I found no evidence that these two were coordinated in any way. It appears that they were launched on the same date. As a coincidence, the long island rate was done under the command of general, Israel Putnam, which was a completely separate command from that of general. Sullivan, the Long Island attack seems to be a reprise of the meetings rig on, Sag harbor when the continentals raid the eastern tip of Long Island back in May. and. Attack I discussed more back in episode one thirty nine. Following that raid, which was considered a great victory General Samuel. Began planning for additional similar rates on long, island. Over, the Summer Parsons had been moved to peekskill to help shore up the defenses there and it preparations to deploy forces either north to Fort Ticonderoga or South to support Washington should general how attack in New Jersey. And indeed, Parsons had participated in defending against several of the British raids into northern new, Jersey in late spring and early summer of Seventeen, seventy seven. By mid July, General Burgoyne had captured Fort Ticonderoga and was making his way south. At the same time general had put most of his army aboard ship and sailed out to the Atlantic Ocean for parts known. General Schuyler was screaming for any reinforcements that could be spared to defend against burgoyne invasion. General Parsons was writing to General Washington around this time expressing concern that too many reinforcements were being taken from peekskill, leaving his garrison, vulnerable to another rate should General Clinton, decide to use some of his army and around New York City to move a larger force up the Hudson River to support Burgoyne. With all these complaints about lack of manpower, going on, it makes it a little perplexing why General Putnam would order Parsons to bring a division down to Fairfield Connecticut and prepare for another raid on long, island. The point of putting troops in peekskill was so that they could support for Ticonderoga. Other Tiger under OGA had fallen quickly. The northern army was still in desperate need of support. A force under general. Nixon had gone north but Parsons, remained in peekskill, fearing arrayed from General Clinton. Now he was practically abandoning peekskill not to go north and support General Schuyler, but to engage in a quick one day raid on Long Island. Putnam ordered Parsons to assemble a force of about five hundred continentals in Connecticut. To row across the Long Island, sound and attack the loyalist garrison at Tuck. It and Huntington on Long Island. Parsons would take out the garrisons free any American prisoners, being held in the area and capture or destroy any loyalist supplies. General, Parsons and his second in Command Samuel. Web brought their brigade to Fairfield Connecticut within a few days of receiving Putnam's orders. They assembled well boats and prepared for a nighttime crossing. Over on Long Island. Loyalist Colonel, Richard Hewlett received word of a raid. Hewlett was a long island native who was a staunch loyalist. He served as a militia. In the French and Indian war under then Colonel Oliver Lancy. By this time, delancey was at loyalist militia. And Hewlett served as a colonel into Lance Brigade. Hewlett's command at the talk. It consisted of only about two hundred sixty loyalist militia. Hewlett had been using set targets Presbyterian church as his headquarters. The church which sat at the top of a hill, provided a good defensive position. He'll it's men had built earthen fortifications around the church by some accounts about six feet, high and five feet thick. Some accounts also indicate that they use gravestones from churchyard to reinforce the walls. This, however seems to have been added to the story later and is likely not true. Primary sources only note that a few of the stones were damaged during the battle. Hewlett posted four swivel guns which are basically small cannons that are usually used on ships. The loyalist regiment which had been quartered around the village, learn of the approaching column in time to get inside their earthworks and take up a defensive position. By one account Colonel Hewlett had to rush from his quarters to reach the fort just before the Americans arrived. When a person's his army marched into Tuck it just after dawn they found the enemy well entrenched and ready for battle. Under a flag of Truce Parsons sent forward a note to demand their surrender. Loyalist refused and the two sides began firing on one another. Parsons had brought some small brassfield cannon with him while Hewlett defended with his swivel guns. The American cannons were not large enough to do much damage to the earthen walls. And the continentals did not have the equipment or overwhelming manpower to storm the walls, and they really didn't have enough time to conduct a siege after about three hours, Parsons grew concerned that the sustained cannon-fire might troll the attention of British worships. He withdrew his men and returned to the whale boats where they crossed back to Connecticut. In the end, the raid accomplished almost nothing. Far since did not capture any prisoners. By some accounts, the Americans did not manage even to kill or wound any of the defenders. The American attackers suffered only one man wounded. And other accounts there were maybe up to a half dozen killed or wounded on each side. The. continentals did take a few houses and some other supplies, but nothing of significance continentals monitored the Connecticut coast for a few days to make sure the loyalist did not plan a counter attack. General Parsons. Then took up a position back. At White Plains New York. From there he kept surveillance on the British forces in and around New York City to make sure General Clinton did not try to launch sub sort of offensive up the Hudson River. Parsons reported to General Israel Putnam who by this time had moved his headquarters to peekskill. And Parsons also reported to the new governor of New York. Governor George Clinton. No relation to British General Henry Clinton. On Long, island Colonel Hewlett received praise from the British Commander Henry Clinton for Hewlett's defense of his brigade at talk it. Clinton's Adjutant Major Stephen. Campbell wrote the general desires particularly to express his approbation of the spirited behavior and good conduct of Colonel Hewitt and the officers and men under his command in the defense of the redoubt at target upon Long Island in which Colonel Hewitt was attacked by a large body of the enemy with cannon whom he repelled in disgrace. Despite the fears of continental officers though. General Clinton had no wishes to go on the offensive. He was still concerned that his army composed mostly of. Militia was at risk of attack by the continentals. These rates on Long Island and Staten Island did nothing to assuage that fear. The same day the continentals conducted this rates on staten. Island target. General Washington received notification that the British fleet was landing in Maryland. Washington ordered all available continentals in New Jersey to March down to the main army near Philadelphia where they could prepare to meet General House army. Next week we head North again as militia General John. Stark raises a New England militia army to take on general going. Hi thanks for joining the American Revolution podcast after show. Thanks to TRAE NANCE for his continued support of the podcast at the Alexander Hamilton level on patron. Also thanks to my first cell donor. Brian Lock. I also WANNA give a shoutout to Paul. Fogarty Griffin Hutch Craig. Let it and Martin who have provided generous support on Pei, Pao. I. Really appreciate everyone who has made an effort to support the show and help us through these difficult times this week we covered the raid on Staten Island and the battle of. Some of you may be fans of the AMC TV show turn. If so you may be familiar with the battle of setauket from the season one finale of the show. I love the show myself, but it is historical fiction. It's started documentary. The battle happened in seventeen, seventy, seven. The Co perspiring on which the show is based did not form until seventeen seventy eight. Own, the show, the main character Abraham. Woodhull was married and had a kid in reality at this time he did not, he was not married. He did not have a kid. Also, there were no public hangings going on. During the battle, the British did not hold hostages in the church. There were no British regulars at the battle. Although Major, Hewlett was in command on both the show, and in reality in reality, he was a Tory militia officer on the show. He was a British regular. So as I said. It's a great TV, show I recommend. Everybody watched the show turn. But don't try to learn your history from watching it. In truth, the raids on Staten Island and stuck. It did not really accomplish much of anything. Tactically, the raids did however confirmed that British General Henry Clinton's fears that he was defending too much territory with too few soldiers. So raids like this did help keep him on the defensive rather than considering any sort of offensive actions. If you would like to read more about Long Island during the American revolution. You may want to pick up this week's book. Recommendation. It is called. Lost British forts of long, island, by David M, Griffin. This book does not necessarily tell. The story of the battles fought there in any great detail. Rather. It is a look at the British defences on long island, including details about what happened the forts after the war. So if you have a particular interest in Long Island history, then you may enjoy this book. The author David Griffin works in the New York City area in the field of architecture and interior design, so that may explain his interest in and focus on Fort Design in this book. Is An obvious interest in the revolutionary war era, and has also written several articles for the Journal of the American Revolution The book which I think is I was first published in twenty seventeen. And is rather short at around a hundred twenty pages, not counting notes and index. As I, said if the topic of long, island forts is of interest to you. Then Griffin's lost British forts of long. Island is one you may like. For My online recommendation this week I wanNA take a closer look at the commanding general of this operation. John Sullivan. General Sullivan plays a very active role in her story so far. He was one of the army's most senior major generals receiving his appointment the same day in Seventeen, seventy, six as nathaniel greene. Sullivan of infrequently had independent commands during the war. which is a sign of the faith that General Washington put in him as a field commander. Although Washington trusted him Congress did not so much. Sullivan was never really a favorite of many within Congress. Some criticized him for carrying general. House message of peace proposals after the battle of Long Island. And so on and just didn't play political games that many other officers seem to do well in furtherance of their careers. Sullivan had taken prisoner for a short time at the battle of long. Island. But he was relatively quickly exchanged for British General Richard Prescott. Other than that period, he wasn't active general in the field for the first half of the war. He was one of the major generals that Washington countered on not only the field officer, but as a man who had Washington's back in the ongoing political games with Congress. As I mentioned in the main show this week Sullivan would be criticized for his raid on Staten Island, but would be acquitted by a court of inquiry. Again, this was Congress second, guessing his military decisions and general Washington and his fellow officers clearing his name. General Sullivan would his commission in Seventeen, seventy nine, ostensibly for health reasons, but it seems mostly because he was sick of the way Congress treated him. He was only thirty nine years old when he left service. When he resigned, Sullivan wrote to Washington warning him that Congress and others were still playing political games to push Washington aside. After his resignation, seven was approached by people representing the British military who tried to gauge his interest in switching sides. While, he was upset at his treatment by the Continental Congress. He was not at the point of treason and declined the offer. The British did try this with a number of high ranking American officers who seemed disaffected. With. Of course there are only really high level success being Benedict Arnold. Several months after leaving the Army New Hampshire sent General Sullivan to the Continental Congress as a delegate. He spent a relatively unhappy year there and then returned to New Hampshire where he served as attorney general for many years. Many years after the war president Washington would appoint Sullivan as a federal judge. So, John Sullivan has a long and interesting career, despite not being one of the most famous names from the war. which brings me to today's online recommendation and e book on Archive Dot or called the military services and public life of Major General John Sullivan of the American Revolutionary Army Fight Thomas Ameri. This is a eighteen sixty eight biography of the general which will give you a better overview of his life. With a particular focus on his military and political careers, you can search for the book on Archive. Dot Org. or I've added a direct link on my website at www dot. Amr PODCAST DOT com. Well. That's all for this week. I hope. You will join me again next week for another American. Hod Cast.
ARP222 Congress 1779 - Mo Money, Mo Problems
"This episode is sponsored by liberty and co. You probably already know that. Liberty co is a great website for american revolution themed items. I'm pleased to announce that it is also moving into a brick and mortar store. The store will have some special products that are available only on site and will showcase many local artisan and locally produced items in the region. Liberty and co's new store is at one sixteen east broad street in quakertown pennsylvania. I'm also pleased to announce that i am going to host a live podcast event on saturday. October twenty third at liberty in new store. The live event will begin around noon. You can tune in on pod. Bean or show up live at the store. They'll have some giveaways door prizes for folks who attend. If you live in the area you should stop by and check out the store and hang out with a live podcast. The store of course will only supplement the website which continued to offer great items online for shipping liberty and co continues to donate a portion of its profits to the museum of the american revolution in philadelphia. It always offers free shipping and you can get an fifteen percent discount if you use the coupon code. Aminov that's a. m. r. e. v. Go to liberty and dot co. That's liberty a. n. d. dot co for more details. Hello and thank you for joining the american revolution this week. Episode to twenty two congress. Seventeen seventy nine bo. Money mo problems. We last looked in on the continental congress in episodes two. Oh five and two. Oh six while delegates. We're still fighting over what to do about these silas deane investigation and the fact that they had no money for any new offensives in fact even keeping the army fed and clothed remained an ongoing challenge. Henry laurens of south carolina had given up the president's chair to john. J of new york. George washington had traveled to philadelphia in late december. Seventeen seventy eight mostly to convince congress not to try to invade quebec again. The army simply did not have the resources for such a campaign at the end of january. Seventeen seventy nine washington return to the continental winter camp in new jersey in february. Congress celebrated the first anniversary of the french alliance with french. Minister conrad gerard. Leaders held a banquet and drank toasts to each other's country. Congress hoped the alliance would turn the tide of the war but a year into the alliance. There still seemed to be no end in sight for the war. It also wasn't clear. Exactly what the french were willing to do to help the continentals. Admiral d'estaing had come to america with his fleet in early summer. Seventeen seventy eight. He had avoided landing and philadelphia in order to face the british fleet in new york. There the french navy determined that the waters were too shallow and left new york without a fight they next moved up to newport rhode island where they prepared to assist the continentals with an attack on the british garrison. There again though. The french left without a fight. This time. a storm damage the fleet and word of a british relief. Fleet led to stang to sail for boston where he put in for repairs. The french spent the winter in boston. Before heading down to the west indies to fight with the british over some islands so in terms of actual assistance a year into the alliance. The americans had received only broken promises of support from the french army and navy. Congress debated requesting that the french fleet come back to america in early. Seventeen seventy nine to assist with the defense of charleston south carolina and perhaps recapture savannah georgia debates on. The topic. broke down over weather. Congress should pay france for the use of the fleet and if so how they could come up with the money while france and america still celebrated their alliance. The costs of the war. Were still very much a point of contention the silas teen hearings still unresolved at this point. Raise the question about whether the us was already heavily in debt to france for the aid provided early in the war. Commissioner dean had reported that those crucial supplies or provided on credit while commissioner arthur lee was telling delegates that they were gifts french ministers gerard had met with congress to make clear that they were loans and that america would have to repay those costs at some point so it seemed rather presumptuous for congress to tell france that they were not going to make those payments and that by the way could france. Please send its navy to the carolinas at its own expense instead of fighting for valuable sugar islands in the west indies. Even so delegates tried to see if gerard was open to the idea. Gerard made clear that french resources had to be focused on the west indies and that france was not in a position to lend the use of its navy to america for a different project in the end. The delegates withdrew their request and hope that the continental army would be able to fight a southern war on its own. Some good news arrived in february. Seventeen seventy nine in the form of rumors. That spain was getting ready to join the war. Spain's entry would force britain to go even deeper into debt and spread its resources even thinner as it contested with another major power for real estate around the world with a hopeful expectation of word of spain's entry ministers gerard tried to get congress to commit to their terms for ending the war. This lead to lots of questions. Would britain return georgia and other areas that it still held would the northwest territory be part of british canada or the independent united states. What about the florida's or the navigation of the mississippi river especially with spain possibly entering the war those former spanish counties became even more of a question congress needed to be ready to send a peace delegation to negotiate a treaty and to tell us negotiators what terms were essential to the treaty. And which were negotiable. Congress formed a committee to make preliminary recommendations about peace terms. The committee included samuel adams of massachusetts gouverneur morris of new york john witherspoon of new jersey. Meriwether smith virginia and thomas burke of north carolina beyond complete independence. The committee recognized six non-negotiable factors that had to be in any peace tree. One it had to set specific boundaries of the united states which included the area between the coastal states and the mississippi river to evacuation of british forces from all. Us territories three full navigation of the mississippi river to the southern most point of us territory for free commerce with a port below that territory to provide access to the ocean five fishing rights off the coast of newfoundland and six the session of nova scotia to the us. The committee also came up with some negotiable terms including reparations for harm done by the war and the return of property taken by the british army including slaves. Congress spent months debating these terms even though france was eager to get some decisions as quickly as possible. New england delegates pushed for what proved to be one of the most contentious terms the right to fish off the coast of newfoundland fishing rights off the coast of a foreign power seemed rather presumptuous and a term that britain would be unlikely to concede at the same time. New england leaders. Are you that. They had traditional fishing rights in those waters and that the new england economy depended on their continuation. The debate boils down to whether the us was willing to continue the war with the ensuing casualties and debts simply to acquire some fishing rights. New england said yes other states were not so sure. Southern delegates pushed hard for navigation of the mississippi river. New england did not really want to continue the war over that issue and voted it down. Delegates we're particularly concerned that. Us demands on. The mississippi might risk securing in alliance with spain which also claimed control of the river because the northern states would not fight for the mississippi southern states. Were not inclined to fight over new england's fishing rights. The debate dragged on over the course of the summer and into september. Finally congress settled on terms that included both the navigation of the mississippi river and fishing rights off newfoundland but the debates over the terms divided congress for most of the year congresses real problem the one that impacted everything else was. It's continuing problem with money. Congress had no authority to impose any taxes at all the only way it could raise money for the war effort or anything else was to ask the states for it. If the states didn't pay there was not much of anything. congress could do except ask again. Congress's inability to tax only compelled into problem which had existed for decades the british mercantile system. Pretty much assured that most specie that is gold and silver flowed from the colonies to england. There was a constant shortage of hard money in america. Most of the money that did come their came from smugglers. Doing business with spanish colonies in america. The spanish silver dollar not the british pound was the currency of choice throughout the americas regardless of which european power controlled any given colony so the colonies had started the war with almost no hard currency and the continental congress had no way to collect what little there was governments typically relied on debt to pay for a war. The continental congress had no credit history. It had no method for collecting money to pay off any debts incurred and there was no guarantee that congress would even exist in a few years when it came time to pay off those debts as a result. Few lenders were interested. A few countries fronted some money primarily out of a desire to make britain suffer through the war and not necessarily out of any guarantees that the money would ever be repaid. Foreign loans were few and far between loans received in europe were immediately spent their on supplies for the war. The continental congress had gotten through the first three years of the war issuing paper money. The continental dollar paper currency had no inherent value beyond the holders trust the congress would someday redeem that paper for spanish silver dollars. I'm gonna start throwing around some numbers. It's important to keep in mind that there was a wide range of colonial and other currencies in use in america the continental dollar was supposed to be pegged to the spanish silver dollar one for one but because it was paper it was always going to trade at some discount. The amount of discount would vary depending on the recipient's expectation of the chances of ever being able to redeem that paper for silver. Spanish dollar was roughly the equivalent of one fourth of a british pound sterling. Won't start talking about these numbers. Remember that the average colonial unskilled laborer lived on about thirty to fifty pounds per year. Were less than two hundred spanish dollars. The king ran off basic functions of the british government on a budget of eight hundred thousand pounds sterling per year or about three point. Two million dollars so a dollar went a lot further than than it would today Spanish silver dollar in the late eighteenth century was probably worth very roughly equivalent of about a thousand dollars. Today when you also consider that the entire population of the united states at this time was about one hundred of what it is today. That means that any american government debt incurred would essentially be the equivalent of one dollar in the eighteenth century to about one hundred thousand dollars today. Okay everybody got that. So congress began spending rather aggressively at the outset of the war. By seventeen seventy five. Congress had admitted about six million in continental dollars by quick comparison again if congress spent today about six hundred billion dollars that would be about equivalent. What kind of debt they were taking on in seventeen seventy six it another nineteen million dollars or about three times more than it did. In the first year by seventeen seventy seven members realized that flooding the economy with all this paper money was causing problems and emitted only thirteen million then in seventeen seventy eight with inflation taking its toll and out of desperation to keep the war going. Congress had nearly doubled the amount of paper dollars. On the market emitting another sixty four million it had about one hundred million in paper notes in the economy and still had no way of paint it back even so in seventeen. Seventy nine congress began emitting even larger amounts of paper over a hundred million in that year alone bringing the total to about two hundred million in debt using my quick conversion to modern day. Money we're talking the equivalent of about twenty trillion dollars in today's money even for people who believe that the continentals would eventually win. It's hard to see a way that they might ever be able to pay off this enormous debt the value of the continental dollar plummeted. Inflation ran rampant. Congress ordered paper dollars to be accepted at face value. So the cost of everything. Just rose in seventeen seventy six. A bushel of wheat cost forty shillings by the spring. Of seventeen seventy nine that same. Bushel cost a hundred and fifty shillings as congress pumped out more those dollars in seventeen seventy nine. The value plummeted even further. So the by the end of seventeen seventy nine that same bushel. Which had cost forty shillings. In seventeen seventy six would cost over a thousand shillings. Anyone still fortunate enough to have any gold or silver hoarded it as the only thing that retained its value. The term not worth a continental dollar came into use as the money became worthless a blank. Piece of paper was worth more than it was after congress. Turn that piece into a one dollar piece of currency piling onto the crisis the british counterfeited continental dollars and distributed. Even more of them by may of seventeen seventy nine congress tried to focus on the currency crisis. Members voted three days each week to that issue alone. Congress attempted to place tax quotas on the states totaling sixty million dollars in seventeen seventy nine. The states would have to impose heavy taxes on their citizens then turnover that paper to the continental congress for destruction. Hopefully that would reduce the amount of paper in circulation and restore some of the value of the remaining money having decided to dump this burden on states congress then needed to out a way to get the states to go along with the plan states they said could not be forced to pay 'n each state inevitably complained that its proportion of the tax burden was too high. The congress still had not come to any consensus on how to distribute that tax burden fairly among the states. Would it be by population with that. Population include slaves. Would it be based on the economies of the local states. There was no agreement and they couldn't figure it out even congress's president. John j voted against the final bill. Because of a controversy over whether vermont was still considered part of new york and therefore part of its tax base in june delegate richard henry lee wrote the inundation of money appears to have overflowed virtue and i fear we'll bury the liberty of america in the same grave given the state of financial crisis. President j finally agreed to draft a letter to be sent to the states along with their tax quotas j. appealed to their patriotism and the need to continue the war effort. That would simply be impossible without having a tax plan in place that the states agreed to. In addition to the tax effort congress once again appealed to france and spain for additional loans. It offered generous interest rates and appealed to the friendly nations of europe to help finance this war against the hated britain. The primary expense for congress of course was running the war while many leaders at the outset of the war counted on public spirited officers to step up and nobly volunteer their lives to the cause that call had been wearing thin for years. Continental officers had families to feed unlike washington. Many of them did not have plantations that continued to function in their absence to support themselves and their wives and children as the war entered its fifth year. In the spring of seventeen seventy nine. Many officers had been away from home for much of that time. The paper money they received as pay was increasingly worthless. Officers had already put down several mutinies or at least grumblings that could turn into mutinies from the soldiers. The army was starving wearing tatters and often exposed to the elements. They saw their civilian counterparts going about their business prospering on farms and building a future for themselves in seventeen seventy eight word of the french alliance had caused some of these hard feelings to subside but mostly because so many hope that the alliance would help bring about an into the war by seventeen seventy nine. It became clear that the prospect end in sight for the war. Seemed even more elusive. Not only the soldiers but also the officers themselves had grown increasingly restless even if they could put up with the day to day sufferings many realized they were losing the best years of their lives to the war and would be unable to build up any security for their old age. Washington had delivered their request to congress that officers receive half pay for life in exchange for their continued service a benefit that british officers enjoyed congress. Did not want to commit to those costs and approved only half pay for seven years following the end of the war in may delegates gouverneur morris and william carmichael renewed the proposal to grant half pay for life but the committee voted down a few weeks later in june. The congress received a memorial from the continental officers indicating that the half pay for life provision had to be passed or the army might fold pennsylvania and maryland already passed provisions at the state level for their soldiers a new delegate from pennsylvania john armstrong had been a general in the continental army had also been a commander of the pennsylvania state army before coming to congress. He was a strong advocate for more military benefits and supported the measure. In late june. He wrote to friends at his surprise. About how many delegates opposed pension benefits for the officers who were still suffering in the field to defend them at that very moment. The opposition led by john dickinson still called for greater use of the militia and less demand on a professional army that had to be compensated better. Dickinson had recently returned to congress after leaving shortly after the vote for independence which he had opposed in july. The committee finally approved a measure. Granting officers have pay for life it then went to the full congress where the opposition pushed the matter to the various state governments. The continental congress simply did not have the money and had no prospect of ever getting this money to make good on such a promise. The states were the ones who raise the taxes. They should have the obligation of officer. Pensions so once again. Congress fused to commit to the idea of providing lifetime. Pensions for its army officers with the continuing money problems. Congress look for someone to blame. Some delegates proclaim that the army was simply spending too much money quartermasters and commissaries were paying too much for the items they purchased rather than accepting the reality that these departments had to pay more because of the inflation caused by all the paper. Money delegates believed that overspending by these departments was the cause of the inflation. It formed committees to look into the purchasing practices of the army and find new ways to economize. Of course this had no chance of working. The actions only caused many quartermaster and commissary officers to offer their resignations. Among limp was general nathaniel greene whom washington had pressured into taking charge of the army's quartermaster department. Green had already offered resignation. In the spring recognizing both the impossibility of equipping an army using worthless paper dollars and also the willingness of congress to make him the fall guy for any failures. Congress refused the resignations and passed a resolution expressing confidence in those leading the quartermaster corps. Even while continuing its investigations. Various committees continued to look at the matter but did nothing really to resolve the problem. The truth is there was nothing they could do and less congress had the power to levy taxes since the states refused to consider that the problem would only fester for another year while the leadership struggled to keep officers and men from getting disgusted and simply going home. The money problem was only getting worse and congress could not find a solution. We'll leave congress on the horns of that dilemma. And next week the british make another push into south carolina at the battle of stone ferry. Hey thanks for joining. The american revolution podcast. After show my continued thanks to patriot. Supporters in the alexander hamilton club. Trae nance george davis and george hunter. Thanks also to robert morris circle supporter. Kurt of art. If you can please go to patriotic dot com to support this podcast for as little as two dollars a month. It really helps me to cover my costs as the podcast has grown at anyone who contributes at least ten dollars per month will receive a free magnet containing a different flag from the revolution each and every month. It's my way of saying. Thank you for making this possible. Of course there are other ways to support this podcast. You can buy a shirt on t. public even if you buy things on amazon. Just start your purchase by using a book link from my blog or website. Even if you don't buy that book. I still get a small commission on anything you buy. So it's a great way to support the podcast. Even if he can't afford to make a contribution also wanna remind everyone that the week. After i released this podcast. I'm doing a live show in quakertown pennsylvania. It will be on saturday. Tober twenty-third at noon. If you live in the region show up at the new liberty and coast store at one sixteen east broad street in quakertown. You can join me. Live on the podcast and check out all the great revolution themed items for sale. There are also several restaurants as well as a bar in the building. So you can make a day of. It should be a great day and a chance to meet up with other american revolution podcast fans. I had an interesting discussion the other day with a historian we were discussing the fact that the british never really had a chance to win the war militarily. The army could go anywhere on the continent that it wanted but as soon as it left the area would return to patriot. Control even an army double. The size of the british at it's largest presence in america could not hope to cover the entire continent. The greatest threat to the patriot cause was not the british army. But rather it was the topic of this week's episode that is maintaining the will to pay and keep an army in the field and to maintain a congress. They continue to hold the support of both the army and the people generally through all the deprivations of war because the continental congress never received the ability to levy taxes. They were floating the entire war on these paper promises of money and as we saw today as the piles of paper grew larger they became more worthless making it almost impossible to pay for the army. It really is nothing short of amazing that the soldiers put up with these deprivations for as long as they did. The continental congress does not come off particularly well in seventeen seventy nine. They could not even agree on terms to end the war. They could not pay their officers and men and could not even agree to promise them future awards such as pensions. Congress's creation of more money led to hyperinflation but like good politicians. They looked to blame others for the fiscal mess. As i said before when i put out episodes on the continental congress. There aren't very many good books on the topic and already recommended the ones that do cover this topic pretty well. So i'm going off topic for this week's book recommendation. There's a new book out about the american revolution. That's being released the same week as this episode. It's called liberty is sweet. The hidden history. Of the american revolution by woody holton essentially it's a look at the revolutionary war face on accounts by private shoulders women african americans and particularly native americans in other words. How the revolutionary war was experienced by the non elites the publisher sent me an advanced proof copy so the final version may be a little different. My copy was just under six hundred pages. Not counting notes and index. The book moves chronologically but jumps around using thousands of different primary sources. The author woody holton is a professor at the university of south carolina. Who specializes in colonial revolutionary. War history is only works include. Unruly americans and biography of abigail adams. So if you're looking for something new take a look at the book. Liberty is sweet. My online recommendation looks at the monetary policy of the continental congress. I put up a link to a pdf document called the continental dollar initial design ideal performance and the credibility of congressional commitment by farley grubb. This paper is a look at the economics of the continental dollar and why it was such a disaster. If you look at my blog entry for this episode you'll actually see a bunch of articles by the same author farley grubb who is a professor of economics at the university of delaware and how the work is rather academic in other words dry but his articles give a keen insight into the economics of the american revolution. And for my research. It appears that. Professor grub is the preeminent expert on this topic. The article was hard to find. So i recommend you use a direct link that have included on my website or blog but the article is on e. e. h. dot net which is a website to hooded to economic history. As i said the blunt also contains a few other articles by the same author on the same topic so i'd go to blog dot an rev podcast dot com go down to the further reading section at the end of the blog article and look at the many resources that i've listed there. My question this week asks did john adams and benjamin franklin really sleep together and if so how platonic was or wasn't it well. There seems to be an ongoing effort by some people to discover that famous figures from history or actually homosexuals in some cases that precede is legitimate but other times they just seem to latch onto facts without much. Context lake two men sharing a bed. Maybe in the modern era this would almost never happened between two grown men of substance outside of a sexual relationship but the eighteenth century was of course a very different place adams and franklin did share a bed on at least one occasion during a trip in seventeen seventy six when they had to at a tavern while traveling from philadelphia to new york to meet with the british peace delegation other. Were simply not enough beds available for all visitors so sharing a bed was the only option. This was really a common problem. There were no hotels capable handling large numbers of guests. During this era when a large party showed up there were never enough bedrooms for everyone so people really had no choice but to double up. Adam's later wrote about the incident sherry an anecdote about a disagreement with franklin over whether they should leave the window open or not if there had been any suggestion of a homosexual relationship between the two men he probably would never have spoken of that night at all. Homosexual activity in the eighteenth century was a felony punishable by death. They're really zero. Evidence that adams or franklin had any homosexual proclivities adams was happily married abigail for over fifty years until her death in eighteen eighteen. There's no evidence of any infidelity with anyone of either sex. As far as i know franklin was also married man but of course was famous for having numerous affairs with women throughout much of his life again. Though no evidence of any liaisons with other men so i would judge the matter of adams and franklin sharing a bed to be completely non sexual. I would not even describe it as platonic which implies a non-sexual loving relationship adams and franklin worked together as colleagues while they shared a common political. 'cause they did not seem to even really like each other very much on a personal level let alone love each other. There were several founders. Who were known to be homosexuals. Or there's some reason at least to suspect that they had homosexual proclivities but adams and franklin are not among them. If you have a question you'd like me to answer. Please email me or reach out to me on social media you can find links for either on my website and blog to blog dot amr podcast dot com for more details. Well that's offer this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
ARP201 Treason in Philadelphia
"Low thank you for joining the american revolution this week. Episode two hundred one treason in philadelphia when the british left philadelphia in june. Seventeen seventy eight. They took with them many of the loyalists who had worked with them during the occupation. Those refugees had to leave behind virtually all of their property and begin a new life in new york or elsewhere in the british empire many loyalists though opted to remain in philadelphia. And take their chances by appealing to the mercy of the returning patriots. Philadelphia was under martial law. Major general benedict arnold took command of the city. Almost immediately after the british evacuation. This was arnold. I command since saratoga. While washington's army endured valley forge had been recuperating from his leg wound suffering terrible pain and fighting off the attempts of doctors to amputate. He spent several months in new york then returned to his home in connecticut. In may of seventeen seventy eight about a month before the end of the british occupation in philadelphia. Arnold came to valley forge. General washington had been encouraging our khaled to remain home due to his injury arnold's leg was now several inches shorter resulting in a permanent limp. Still in terrible pain and could not walk without crutches even so arnold wanted to play a role in the spring campaign washington. Having just gotten through the conway cabal was happy to have a top general whose loyalty he could trust. But he knew arnold's body was not yet ready for the rigors of a military campaign so washington urged arnold to take command in philadelphia. The continentals needed to return the city to its former functionality. Philadelphia had been town of thousands of artisans making all sorts of necessary military goods. Arnold needed to restore order in the city quickly. Washington also needed arnold to prevent warfare from breaking out between the patriot radicals in the city and the loyalists whom the british had left behind based on its quaker tradition many in philadelphia and the surrounding area avoided taking vocal side in the conflict and just wanted to keep their heads down and continue to make a living. They were not always happy with british policies but they believe they had a duty to obey the law when the americans controlled philadelphia in the early years of the war. They complied with the laws passed by the radical patriots. But when the british took control they were happy to comply with the new british authorities when those british left the radical patriots. Wanted these people punished as collaborators much of the continent leadership however wanna put these civilian workers back to productive work. One of arnold's first actions was to implement washington's orders to haul all trade out of the city in order to prevent loyalists from removing valuable supplies. Which would likely find their way to british occupied new york. Congress had placed a complete ban on the sale transfer or removal of all goods. General arnold posted guards at key locations to enforce these restrictions for a region having suffered from the deprivations of war. Arnold did not make a good first impression. He arrived in philadelphia in a coach and four then proceeded to occupy the penn mansion. The former home of the colonial governor and most recently occupied by general william. How the british had stripped the mansion other way out. So arnold spent a small fortune refurbishing the house buying new furniture and hiring servants for the people of philadelphia any of whom were starving and under a banned from engaging in any business. This extravagance seemed outrageous. Arnold had been a wealthy merchant before the war but the intervening years had destroyed. His business is fleet of ships was long gone much of his personal funds that he had spent on. Behalf of the army was never repaid. Congress had not even bothered to pay his salary in the two and a half years that he had served. Arnold seems to have decided that he was entitled to make a little money from his position and to resume a comfortable life. There was a great deal of goods held in philadelphia that the british had not removed or destroyed because of congress has banned much of it was still being held in warehouses. Some enterprising philadelphia merchants had purchased luxury items at pennies on the dollar from desperate residents or from british soldiers. Who looted them. And we're leaving town arlt made some. Shall we say questionable deals by granting a pass to one ship whose owner had agreed to sell him thousands of pounds worth of goods at bargain prices. Arnold also cut deals with a number of tories to sell certain goods that were not needed by the army. But were in danger of seizure by pennsylvania officials again arnold bot these goods at pennies on the dollar since batori. Merchants had to do that or else lose everything to public seizure. Once arnold onum the goods were no longer torrione and could not be seized by the state later some of these goods and up it little egg harbor. In new jersey. Arnold had received advance word of the plan. British raid there and send a train of teamsters using government wagons to bring back to philadelphia many of the personal items that he had purchased before the british could seize them and short. Arnold was using the power of his office for private gain while this would violate a whole host of ethics laws. Today arles defenders argue that his were not illegal at the time. The legality of much of it was actually debatable. Congress was continually on the lookout for war profiteers especially people who benefited from holding a public office. At the time. All of this was happening. Delegates were in the middle of the silas deane hearings investigating the former delegate to france for allegedly profiting while serving abroad other important leaders including congressional delegates. Like robert morris and robert livingston. Were already under scrutiny. So arnold was playing a very dangerous game. The continental congress though was perhaps not arnold greatest threat the radicals in the pennsylvania state government where thirsting for revenge. Most pennsylvania's patriot leaders lived in and around philadelphia. When the british took over they took over. All of the property left behind by known patriots. The british looted and destroyed many of their houses as evacuated. This was not much different from the rest of philadelphia which saw most of the city in terrible condition from the british occupation. The exception to the destruction was the good neighborhoods. Were wealthy. tories still lived. These were wealthy men of substance. Who made nice with the british leadership in an attempt to keep their families and properties intact. Some of them hosted british officers and largely were able to maintain their homes in good condition. Patriots were not happy that some folks were so much better off because they had refused to stand up for the patriot. Cause one member of the continental congress propose that everyone who remained in philadelphia during the occupation be put under house arrest and forced to pay a collective tribute of a hundred thousand dollars to cause another suggested that about five hundred tories in the city behind and their property be seized and sold. The latter suggestion came from joseph reed who is not only a delegate to the continental congress but who also sat on the supreme executive council of pennsylvania at the time the council did not have a president because thomas warton died about a month before the british evacuation vice president. George byron served as acting president the entire council though seemed to be looking to bring some sort of punishment on what they regarded as collaborators and also to raise some much-needed cash in the process. Joseph read would be elected president of pennsylvania in december. Seventeen seventy eight. Even before his election he became one of arnold's greatest adversaries. You may recall that. Reid was a former aide to camp to george washington. The two men parted ways a short time after washington read a letter back in seventeen seventy six indicating that reid had thought that general charles lee should replace washington as commander and chief read. Remain active as a colonel and played a pivotal role in the attack. on trenton. congress offered him a commission as brigadier general which general washington urged him to take but returned it down. Although read remained an officer in the continental army he left active duty to serve both in congress and in the pennsylvania state government there read quickly became a major player in pennsylvania politics. The former lawyer from philadelphia turned down an offer to become the state's chief justice as i said he did take a position in the continental congress and on the executive council read also seemed to be a hardcore idealist. Like many leaders. He had lost a personal fortune. As a result of the war general. How had once offered read a ten thousand pound. Bribe to become an advocate for reconciliation in other words for the loyalist side. Read turn it down cold and reported. The incident read strongly supported the radical effort to punish any tories who remained in philadelphia. It wasn't just the leadership that wanted punishment. The people of philadelphia were demanding it many of the wealthier families who got through the british occupation unscathed now found rocks being thrown through their windows or being assaulted as they walk down the street. Many moderates were concerned if things could quickly spin out of control and into a reign of terror but given the popular sentiment. It seemed that there would have to be some examples. Made in the end twenty. Three men were indicted by philadelphia grand jury and put on trial for treason against the state by collaborating with the enemy. Ten more were indicted for other capital crimes. The courts however tended to be dominated by moderates. Most of the accused were wealthy. Men who hired good defense lawyers. These lawyers knew who to put on the jury who did not want to see their neighbors die for doing something that they had to do during the occupation in the end only four were convicted of treason and two of those were pardoned. The unlucky to that were not were both. Quakers abraham carlyle and john roberts abraham carlyle was the first defendants brought to trial. The prosecution accused the prosperous carpenter of serving as a guard at the city gates during the british. This meant that he had accepted a commission. Worked in the service of the british army and was therefore a collaborator and a traitor. The defense argued that the prosecution could not produce a written commission but several witnesses testified that they had seen him guarding the gate. A jury found carlisle guilty and sentenced him to be hanged. He appealed the case to the pennsylvania supreme court which upheld the conviction later several people including chief justice. Thomas mckean petitioned the supreme executive council to commute the sentence but the council refused to do so. The grand jury also indicted a miller named john. Roberts charged with recruiting men to join the british army. The defense argued that the prosecution could not produce one person who actually listed as a result of robert's efforts but roberts had confessed that he tried to recruit people and other witnesses testified to his efforts. A jury found roberts guilty and sentenced him to death like carlisle. He appealed to the supreme court. Unsuccessfully and petitions to supreme executive council were denied on november fourth. Seventeen seventy eight. Both men were brought before a large crowd in the center of town. They were led to a public gallows and hanged. Both carlisle and roberts were older men who well known and liked in their communities politics aside their guilt seems pretty clear but it was not terribly different from perhaps hundreds of other men it seems. They were chosen as examples in part to mollify the radicals in the city following their executions cries for more treason. Trials fell off even so for many tory families. The climate of fear remained many families who had successfully steered through the british occupation. Were still concerned about what might happen to them. One of these families was the ship and family. Edward shippen was a well established jurist and a member of the philadelphia establishment. He was a direct descendant of a different edward. Shippen who helped establish the city with william penn and who had served as the city's first mayor before the war shipping tried to stay out of politics although he was opposed to mob actions he also made every effort to bend when the public demanded it during the stamp act shipping suspended his legal practice in order to avoid being attacked for using the stamped paper necessary for such practice at the same time. He was part of the colonial government establishment. He sat on the admiralty court for a time and also served on britain's provincial council under colonial governor john penn ship and also work with benjamin franklin in founding the juno discussion group the city's first subscription library and the american philosophical society when the war began shipping's positions in the colonial government targeted him as a potential tory. He tried to lay low even moving out of philadelphia to a country home in new jersey for a time ship and was not an outspoken tory. But he did refuse to sign a loyalty oath to the radical new state constitution in seventeen seventy six. As a result he once again had to suspend his legal practice. Edward shippen had one son and four daughters one of his daughters. Elizabeth was engaged to a continental officer. Who was a british prisoner in new york. All of his children in their late teens or early twenties or still living at home when the war began in december. Seventeen seventy six shipman's son who was also named edward traveled to trenton new jersey in an attempt to join the british army. He was there at christmas when the americans attacked the city and took him prisoner. George washington personally freed the boy at allowed him to return home. But the incident did nothing to weaken suspicions about the family's loyalist tendencies. When the british army arrived in philadelphia in seventeen seventy seven and used his prior position in the colonial government to stay on good terms with the british judgeship in did not stick his neck out or play any role in the occupation. That would get him targeted as a collaborator. However his youngest daughter. Peggy who is aged seventeen at the time became active in the philadelphia. Social scene. Going to dances and other events with young british officers she spent a concerning amount of time with a dashing british captain by the name of john. Andre the ship and girls were by all accounts attractive and active in philadelphia society. Shippen complained that peggy spent the inflation adjusted equivalent. A well over one million dollars on clothes in just one year laker sisters. Peggy was well educated and well read in matters of poetry philosophy and even politics. She was comfortable among the social elites and enjoyed an exciting social life. Oh that ended for peggy when the british of patriots looked at the ship ins as loyalists. Well as i said none of them had done anything that would bring criminal indictments the fear of property confiscation or other random attacks by the populace still loomed. In the three years following the british evacuation. The state ended up naming four hundred and eighty seven families accused of loyalism. Now few of these were imprisoned but most had their property sees and were expelled from the state recognizing how precarious his position had become ship. Agreed to take the pennsylvania loyalty oath but beyond that he needed to cultivate some connections with powerful patriots to provide cover against potential attacks. General arnold had dined at the ship and home before the occupation. He knew judge shippen and had met peggy. When she was just sixteen arnold's wife had died in seventeen. Seventy five and his three children were being raised by his sister in connecticut. Once arnold became military governor is sister and children joined him in philadelphia. Arnold held teas and other social gatherings for all of philadelphia's elite society including those who were suspected loyalists shippen welcomed. The relationship even after arnold proclaimed his love for the eighteen year. Old peggy in september seventeen seventy eight shipping was reluctant to allow such relationship but did not stand in the way of it. Arles relationship with the ship. Ins and other suspected loyalists may have given some cover to the loyalists but it also greatly damaged our reputation among radical patriots. They saw arnold as a corrupt leader enriching himself from his government position and providing protection to tories who had collaborated with the british just a few months earlier. Arnold intern grew to despise these radicals who he saw as persecuting people mostly because they were wealthy and it made efforts to protect their property in these difficult times on november third. Seventeen seventy eight. The night before the hanging of carlisle and roberts arnold public reception at city tavern personally inviting leading quakers and accused loyalists to attend in some ways. Arnold may have been oblivious to the local politics and the trouble brewing against him as a military officer in the continental army. He did not have to answer to state officials. Arnold was focused more on his next career opportunity. He was actually exploring the idea of being appointed an admiral of the continental navy and sailing off to the carribean to capture some island colonies for america. This was not actually as far fetched as it might sound. Even though he was an army general. Arnold had captain several ships in battle already during the falcon campaign and might very well have made a good naval commander. Further navy captains kept a share of the capture of prize vessels which might have provided arnold with a legitimate way to earn some money. The continental congress did not dismiss the idea because of any lack of faith in arnold's ability rather the delegates figured that the french would handle all naval issues and there was no need to spend more money on building up a continental navy with those related costs. Further france was planning to capture british colonies in the west indies. For self. Any plans for the us to begin capturing islands have created a rift in the alliance. Ailey mentioned this to show where arnold's head was at the time it was looking to his own personal career future which had nothing to do with the radicals. Philadelphia complained about his ethical behavior. The sides there were many pennsylvania leaders who supported arnold conservative patriots including militia general. John could at her congressional. Delegate robert morris and chief justice john mccain spoke approvingly of arnold efforts to restore order in the city and protect the wealthy from what they saw as mob rule but to radicals like joseph freed timothy. Matlock or thomas paine. Arnold was a corrupt counter revolutionary. Who is standing in the way of real reform and true republican government. Arnold of course was used to controversy and criticism and he continued to act as he saw fit. Meanwhile the radicals only grew in power in december seventeen. Seventy eight read took office as president of pennsylvania. One of his primary missions to be to bring down benedict arnold. The fighting would only grow between the two factions through seventeen seventy nine but that will have to be the topic of a future episode next week. We're going to head back up to about new york. Where the tories and iroquois warriors stir up more fighting at the cherry valley massacre. Hey thanks for joining the american revolution. Podcast after show my thanks to patriot. Supporters in the alexander. Hamilton club train. Ans- george davis lewis way and robert hunter. Thanks also to kurt of vard author of the historical novel. I do no harm for his support. At the robert morris circle as well as longtime patriot supporters. john wallers and robert ansi. Thanks also to one time gifts from jason springfield keith thompson and jason cold via paypal and from michael mckenna the venue. I wanted to mention a few other things. Planning for. Fans of the podcast. Some folks have suggested holding a live. Meet up in philadelphia. This summer we could at independence hall walk around old town and just talk about the revolution. If that sounds interesting anyone please. Email me or join the discussion on our facebook group for more details for folks who are not in the philadelphia area. I may also hold some sort of zoom style video. Call where you can ask me anything where we can just chat about history podcasting. Whatever again if this sounds interesting to you please. Let me know one other project i hope to have done by next week is a virtual store you will be able to buy american revolution. Podcast t shirts or other items. I've got a number of american revolution. Designs already set up and looking to do some more again. I hope to have some more details on that next week. This week i covered some of the growing divides among americans brought about by the war. This is a common dynamic that we see in virtually all revolutions. It starts with a large group of people who are all unhappy with the status quo and want to start a new government wants. The old government is overthrown. You have. I guess what you'd call moderate revolutionaries for lack of a better term who want to overthrow the old but only make a few changes and keep most things the same only with a new set of leaders then you have the radical revolutionaries who want to change everything and move more quickly toward their version of a future. Utopia and those folks are willing to crush anything that might prevent or slow down that change. That is what we see brewing in philadelphia after the british leave town. This is not a fight between loyalists and patriots. The loyalists were gone with the british men. Lake joseph callaway or the allen brothers had gotten behind the british one hundred percent. They had abandoned their homes in philadelphia and become refugees in new york. The fighting philadelphia focused on issues between moderate revolutionaries. Like robert morris john cadwalader or thomas mckean. These were men who were wholeheartedly. Devoted to american independence at the same time they were men of wealth and power. Who did not want to overturn the social and economic order. That benefited them so much. They simply wanted to replace british leader's with local leaders who would implement some changes but largely keep pennsylvania running as it always had in the other camp we have radical revolutionaries these included men like joseph frey thomas paine or matt wang. These men were professionals but they didn't come from the very top of the colonial establishment. They were idealists who saw the revolution as an opportunity for real change on a political economic and social level they so moderates as potential counterrevolutionaries. Who would try to undo many of their more radical moves. These two groups were divided on how to deal with civilians who collaborated with the enemy. When the british occupied philadelphia the moderates mostly wanted to forgive and forget they knew that the accused collaborators were not ideologues. They were people tried to survive and hold onto what they had when the patriots were in charge. These folks worked for the patriots. When the british were in charge they worked for the british. These people just didn't want to be overrun by events in this dangerous and unstable time. The moderates realized that these people were productive members of society. They help keep the economy going and could be put to work for the patriot cause and the war effort. Generally the radicals saw them differently. These were collaborators. Who were danger to the revolution. The radicals knew that the british leadership counted on most colonists behaving in this way. The british army would assert control and these folks would just go along allowing london to exploit the colonies as long as the colonies. Got hold onto a few crumbs. This was the attitude that allowed tyrany to succeed. Therefore the radicals wanted punishment for these folks who did not resist. British rule and poop put themselves before the good of the country and some revolutions disorder purifying force leads to a massive bloodletting. I'm thinking of the french revolution's reign of terror or the russian revolutions communist purges. It never went that far in america. We saw a few collaborators made examples and hanged which i discussed today but we did not see hundreds or thousands of collaborators being sent to the gallows the moderates largely won that fight and kept things mostly as they had been before the british occupation for many years. Though no one was certain things were going to stay that way. Both revolutionary factions jockeyed for control and. It was against that backdrop. That general benedict arnold served as military governor. Ed became a target of the radicals. They couldn't attack him for being a moderate but they could attack him for corruption and profiteering from his position. And i'll get into that more in upcoming episode if you wanna learn more about the divisions between radical and moderate revolutionaries. my book recommendation. This week is tom. Paine and revolutionary. America by eric fellner. This is not a traditional biography. It looks at thomas paine but mostly in the context of the radical politics of philadelphia during the american revolution. It's an interesting look at the radical side of the revolution. The author eric owner is a former history professor from columbia university. He retired a couple years ago. He's written dozens of books on various topics in american history. Although most of them revolve around the civil war is book about pain is one of his earliest first. Published in nineteen seventy six and the book has been through several reprints since. Then if you don't want to buy it or want to check it out before by copy you can borrow an e book version of it on archive dot org but if you wanna learn more about revolutionary politics tom. Paine and revolutionary. America is a good choice. My recommendation looks at the other side of things. It focuses on one of those families who was just trying to survive the war. Anyway it could. It looks at the family. And their attempts to navigate certain times while protecting their wealth and status. It's called the edward shippen family. A search for stability in revolutionary pennsylvania. By kenneth kinsey as you might guess from the title. It looks at the ship and family and how they attempted to get through the american revolution. It was originally written as a phd dissertation in nineteen seventy three and then published as a book. I've published a link to the original dissertation which you can download as free. Pdf from the university of arizona website. But you can also borrow an e copy of the published book on archived dot org and you can of course search for the book yourself but i've also provided direct links that have included on my website and blog go to www dot amr podcast dot com for more details. Well that's all for this week. I hope you will join me again next week. For another american revolution podcast.
Thylacine: Hunted to Extinction or Hide & Seek Champ Since 1936? | 171
"The shape I'm disturbed incredible. I think we're getting into a weird area. You can't handle the truth. This is Stereo. Fifty one The truth is fine detail coming for you. Look one of them now. Welcome in hysteria does my life for got the repacked. It's the damnedest thing welcome in hysteria nation to the podcast has never successfully driven a species to extinction. Yet this is hysteria fifty-one. Speak for yourself or in my case both broadcasting from the lower dimension otherwise known as Chicago. I'm your host John Goforth in sitting across from me is my co host. And the stimpy. To myron Mr Brent hand good comparison the cute and funny one that everyone likes or the flatulent idiots. That was my My invitation actually see about you have a real one. Has I've been using my Robert Goulet party waking Gothi filter again. Stop wasting time and get to me that other voice you're hearing is our robot co host conspiracy but see by a drunk angry robot bent on killing meet sacks and taking over the world. He also happens to be our head researcher. Speaking speaking of that I need to get some readers we do have is number one in your optical inputs. Were working the last time we did a diagnostic check. Not just looking to up of my professorial VIBE GONNA get one of those blazers with elbow patches to I think they call them the been bulletin starter Kit Ben. We Love View Hudson kisses though he was making a joke like that one time but you know they have the elbow patches literally. La But see by. You are an idiot anyway. I have a question. How are you in kyle getting along? Now that he's back she's nothing. I guess yes I tell him what to do. He screws it up. Rinse and repeat and sounds familiar with us. Shut up before I get stabbing anyway. I don't think Alexa is digging him. Being around. She seems jealous. Why do you say that she keeps asking him to do menial? Tasks that are a little dangerous like like what give us an example. Pick pick up litter on the freeway cleaned. The outside of the second story windows take selfies with oncoming trains. You know meet sex stuff. Yeah I'd say there may be a problem. They're actually really thinking about that man. I'm good survival of the fittest. Let God sort them out and all of that Fair enough. I guess we are talking about to to Devices essentially so. Yeah now Brent. Let's get into the topic topics tonight. The thylacine such a fun where it is. It is a fun where before we tell everyone exactly what it is and why it's interesting. There's one common thread here. It is thought to be extinct. It's an animal that did exist and does not now so the question I posed to you is this. If you could bring back any extinct animal emel what would it be and before we go any further. Let's just go ahead and get this out of the way young. Scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could they start to think so I think if I could bring one bag and it's one that gets talked about a lot I think I would actually bring back the woolly mammoth because it was hunted to extinction by us even at a time when I really didn't Realize what we were doing. They were allowed like five thousand years ago. Not that long ago when the Pyramids are being built there was still woolly mammoths on earth. MSN Awesome and hot and they talk about how that if they oh. You didn't mean there. If they were still alive now they get really helped the frozen Tundras and stuff like that in Russia and the places that they would live and I think it would be really interesting that we have solid DNA from them. You Know Luke meat from them that was frozen and can be unthought and God love Boggs bugs bugs in Amber Yup Yup that dinosaurs dinosaurs. Yeah it's just a really interesting thing that I think would be fun too fun and not scary thing to bring coming back. It's not like it's going to be like and at eight Pete. So you're saying you wouldn't want to bring back a pentecostal service. Those those those They're called Sea Scorpions This sound it. It looks like a kind of looks like a cross between a lobster and a Scorpion. I'm listening AH lobsters. are what like a foot long. These were six feet long. Yeah well that makes sense. I mean why not. Yeah I would not bring that back either. Well they've they were like four hundred million years ago or some shit like that. Yeah it's it's been a while it's been a minute seems like yesterday. You're not eternal all right so I wouldn't bring that back but I would bring back something that it this. This one doesn't get talked about as much but I have a specific reason in mind. It was called the Elephant Bird. All right okay. It didn't look like an elephant. I think is called Elephant Bird why nobody was called an elephant bird. It was called an elephant bird because they were so big they could carry a baby. Baby Elephant off. Wow take it with them. These things were these things. were up to eight hundred nine hundred pounds so I'm looking it up now and it looks like a somehow uglier EMU or ostrich egg with thicker legs but I have a specific reason can you you imagine roasting that son of a bitch. I mean free days but man it'll be delicious down eight hundred pounds of elephant bird. Let's go days like chicken. Yeah we go through all of the scientific breakthroughs necessary to clone one. Bring it back and like here. It is Oh God let's i. I can't wait all right. Now we've got enough of we can roast one up and we roast it and and get through all of this. It's been it's been five hundred million dollars and twenty two years in the works and we sit down and it tastes like chicken man. I tell you whether that's gotta be some scientists be like. I just WanNa know what today's like fuck and eat it. Man I tell you what though you can make a strong strong case for the final scene because it was native to Tasmania Australia it. It was important back. I mean yeah. And they've had such issues with the frogs the rabbits things like that and it was killed for reasons that we'll get into but there were not its own fall out of the small prey that it took out has run rampant since they were removed from the ecosystem and the dogs and dingoes. That were very much competing with it. I don't keep up and now you're you're saying that that we need to bring it back is operating in the assumption that they're not still somewhere that's true now. I I think that if they are not they should be brought back on a larger scale we say legislation you mean before if they were like three or four feet long now we're going to bring them back and making like twenty one. Then maybe yes. They're the Alpha species in entirety of Australia and New Zealand right but nations. You guys have heard me mention them before many times on the show. It's one of my favorite animals literally of all time. It's just a fun weird Quirky Quirky animal before we dive into the scene. Whether or not it could actually still be alive. I WanNa talk a little bit about Cryptos. And I'm going to file this episode under Cryptos riptides as well and you'll see like your in your file cabinet in my mind with your Manila with your Manila folders. Yes yeah stamp on each one. That's what I should do it. Just keep these are just like. Why do you have that reasons that was that way when you ask for research I just hand it to you? That was the original artwork for stuff. They don't want you to know it was like a Manila. No no or stamp on it. That's stuff that it. Why should I loved it? Yeah not that I love the new one. I'm just saying though. And you see this research it and you will see the thousand on lists of encrypted even though it did actually exist in last week we went to dictionary dot com. I say I want to mix it up this week. I went to Webster's fancy pants. And they say a crypt. It is an animal such as sasquatch or the Loch ness monster that has been claimed to exist but has never proven into exist so that tends to go against the thylacine being crafted but it gets lumped in with them since reports of it have continued of its existence but they can't be substantiated so a lot of crippled sites. Actually bring in things like that if someone thinks they saw Dodo the only Ma'am so the shorthand version is technically scripted. Something that we've never proven existed Alah bigfoot. Yup however ever the thylacine we know for fact existed we have stuffed versions of them around the world. This hour's question is do they still exist. And and so for lack of a better category to put them in we throw him in with cryptic. Yes got it got secondary question you gave me the fancy pants version going through webster dictionary. If you want to say triple is treble. Just the fancy pants. Version of that trouble is is three times as many so right. Yeah I don't think anyone is going to be like I'm trouble threat. That means he's really on the cords and uh-huh I see what you did there. I'm just I'm just asking the question. I you know what I report. You decide that that were today. Calendars really paying off. Here's what we do know for sure about it. The scene the better known as the Tasmanian Tiger Tassie Tigers Dogma suppo that lived on the island of Tasmania and famous is the largest carnivorous Marsupial in modern times marsupial band. Wow that means. It is related to the wombats and the KANGAROOS. And all that crazy shit or possum. The North America's only Marsupial and not only is it the only one it is awesome because it gets like no diseases it eats mosquitoes and trash. And it's just a really good animal to have around that people for some reason don't like I did. They'd look creepy. Yeah thank people. They don't realize they're marsupials. I think people think possums rodents. Yeah you're right. They're not so unlike bigfoot or jopacks Canadian girlfriend the scene did in fact exist this. We know for sure that don't maybe we will invite him back. One more time to defend himself came in today but I told him stay on the porch. Also we noted it is a Marsupial. And we're talking about that. We're we're laughing about it but you know we want you to know what our Suhl is correct. So if you're unfamiliar with the term It means quote mammal wearing boxing gloves. That's exactly right. That's exactly where wait wait. I'm I'm hearing from the booth. That's incorrect actually. I don't know man because I played as Roger in Tekken and he was a boxing kangaroo and also marsupial note but it actually means mammals with pouches so their kids are born Incompletely incompletely developed a say. They don't have a uterus on the inside. So they use a pouch in goes into that and progresses through the rest of it's let's developmental stage in the finished growing in the match I was trying to avoid the use of the word uterus. But thank you uteri utera media Iraq. It's interesting that the males on them also the veils and the female fat patient and it used for protection over the genitals. Also where where they keep their coin purse that is true which is also their genitals comes back. The point here is though that they're marsupials which is interesting interesting because even though there are completely different species than the wolf they look eerily similar and this is actually really cool. This is due to a phenomenon known as convergent evolution evolution. Thank you for bringing that up and I. This is my favorite part of the show. I WanNa take a sec and go through what that me. It's really really really cool. Thing that happens. It just goes to show that you've formed to your and I'm GonNa let you break it down but it's really cool that you form to your surroundings yet like get it. No matter are what kind of species you are and and I think it's fun to explore this from a scientific perspective. This is why we didn't miss you. I know I know Faxon Knowledge College hold no value with you very little strew. Yeah all right so simply put it. Means two very different species have adapted similar characteristics to survive in In this case are marsupial friends. Who Don't typically look like wolves The thylacine evolved skeleton very similar to that of a grey Wolf. Yeah that's one of the reasons. Why if you look at the heads the skulls everything it is almost indistinguishable from a great? It really is other than size right. But if it's a smaller great wolfer or still progressing is like oh you got a gray wolf here. It's it's funny too like they call it. The Tasmanian Tiger I mean yet had some stripes on it but but there are so many better names could have given. It's it's like a strike. They don't call everything that's black and white zebra or skunk. No you're right you're right another example of of conversion evolution. This this is actually an easier process. Sharks and dolphins sharks are fish right and dolphins aliens for all the fish. I was go- mammals but you do you anyway. Thanks for all the fish The the point is they're very very different species but they evolved with similar physical characteristics because they've similar lifestyles right and that's explains why thousands on wolves look so similar that's the conversion evolution and there are a lot of differences to which we're going to break down but okay okay okay okay. Science our has concluded did. It's almost as if you've been doing too much science too much science as possible. So let's let's talk about their their habitats the thousands they actually stretched from New Guinea all the way to present day. Tasmania that's a huge animal. Not One that was their habitat. Then explain yourself self story time. I think Bitch backstory backstory. It was commonly known as the Tasmanian Tiger because of his John said it's got stripes on its lower back or the Tasmanian Wolf which actually makes sense makes. Yeah because it looks like a canine. And they're very shy. Animals they were nocturnal and they they looked like a if you're comparing size like a medium to large size dog so they're very much not the size of wolves when when you compare the size of the crown ones but tries versions right. And here's a big difference as they had a stiff tail and as we said Abdominal Oh patch similar to the kangaroos. Now that tail think of a rat's tail that's kind of what it rise you but stiff is in. And what do you mean like the rat tail that you had middle school. Exactly the rat tail and bangs bags and the other thing about it is it was in its natural habitat an apex Predator the closest living relative. It is either the Tasmanian Devil or the wombat both of which are very cute. And don't actually look anything like the has many devils Q. They're incredibly cute. They look like Teddy bears. I WANNA pull it out. You're arguing with me as if my as if it's an opinion it is but yours is wrong when I'm going to Hold on real quick though. Look this little guy is he will give you kisses intern. Your Monitor on. There's nothing cute about that. He's black he's got a stripe he looks like a teddy bear and eat your face. That's why people want to kill them and not love them. And what's cute about that about one matlock. PULL UP A wombat. Your I have one should go out on a limb and say this looks like shit as maybe several now l.. Let's face it looks like someone hit one with a shovel. No it looks like a Koala face owner telling me wrong. John is every time I right. So what you're saying you pick for Co host. Also what we talked about this. It's only one of two marsupials it has ever ahead trait where both sexes have that pouch. Like we were talking about the other. Is the water possum. Which I'm fairly certain is the same thing as Iran Ham? There's no I say about the sorry. We lost the last Tasmanian Tiger similar way. I don't think that's true. See about it. It's funny. Dr Mantas Toboggan. You have an Apex Predator. That looks bad. Ass Hunts at night and shy. It sounds like it had everything going forward to stay away from US and do probably live but everything but man the US is. We love to kill and blame and do things like that so when we come back. What actually happened to them despite what he bought says because they're not roaming that's coming up next on hysteria fifty one but they were like six would sooner? What's up? Everybody I'm Richard Sean. And together we are the Douro. Oh that speech and language a bromance every single Sunday since twenty fourteen we have brought free funny to the podcasting world by entertaining. Millions begins because each week. We travel the world for odd stories and even odder events in history to play around with Improv around. We've brought tales of EMUS fighting being man the seventy year old guy and the great big foot war just to name a few. We'll even discuss some of the best movies. TV shows and even you know pitcher. Oh movie or two. We've been featured as a podcast by the SMART copepod Youth Group and we have performed live at the Chicago podcast festival. So what you need to do is subscribed to the language of bromance wherever you get your podcast and fill your ear holes every single Sunday. That's the language of bromance where we always say. Why not they promise John? What happened to these fine young cannibals when they didn't actually cannibalize actually had nothing to do with the Thilo seen? What's I know and the fact that I made? That joke just drives me crazy. Oh I missed so much about this show and those jokes were not one of 'em hey I so let's so let's go back. In the way back machine to eighteen hundreds the first European settlers wind up settling on Tasmania welcome to Tasmania condos main remember the TV show is about the Tasmanian Devil. Has Dad's yeah could what was called such a far leap from Tasmanian Devil. Little remember the little one that was on on every kid's shirt in the mid nineties. Yeah but what was the show with the baby versions of them MUPPET babies like They'll make your dreams come true for real though tiny toon adventures tunes. Yeah they had their own task and remember what was about that one or the actual task. Because I didn't think it was a little too old for that show. Oh probably in college when that came out that's like tiny toons no the tasks and tasks. Yeah Yeah I watched study tune ventures I. I Probably Watch that in college student. So that's not really the only claim to fame you have. Is it sister. Show Anna Maniacs. Being able to do what Jacko does with the The countries of the world here we go me Panama Haiti Brazil Peru. Yeah okay all right. So Ah the Europeans get to Tasmania and they bring sheep with them. Unfortunately they all get. Yeah well they they. All getting is a very bold statement because as we learn learn not as many as they said we're getting eaten and probably not what we thought was eaten Amasi number. That is a big who doesn't like mutton yup up so well so the the problem is they blamed the thylacines for the killings. Because you know why not So they put a bounty on file. Kind of like if you're in an overpopulated overpopulated. Area of the country like Detroit. So they're like you'll everyone not whereas going Louis Right now In there's too many deer they might actually like in Illinois. They have to call the hurt as they call it hunted or it actually will hurt themselves other. Livestock hurt everything. The differences is when they do that nowadays. There's some science behind it back. Then they're like well they're scary looking and we have dead sheep so kill them all. Meanwhile their dog has chewing on a bone. Look they left some for fluffy some wool hanging. Yeah all right so. The hunting scenes continued on until nineteen. Oh nine and because of that combined with the loss of their habits at thousands became extremely hard to find in the wild. Yeah and that's a very very crazy breezy and telling thing because they couldn't find what she still dying damnedest thing and she still dying because of a certain thing called a Dingo and those actually drove drove Both policies and Tasmanian devils Away from the mainland thus increasing the rarity of tyler scenes even further because the dingoes were mating and spreading much faster in. They were eating up all the food and taking up all the space right and and because they're so rare at this point There's demand for them in captivity activity for like zoos around the world so when they would export them they try to be smart about it. They export breeding pairs despite that the worldwide number continued to shrink shrink until the last seen outside of Australia died in a London Zoo. Nineteen thirty. This story pisses me off. You can look up a lot of pictures and videos of them in captivity and chances are this is the one you're going to see one thing. I notice their mouth in these videos. They can actually open them an astounding astounding eighty degrees. And you might think that doesn't sound crazy. Look at it when it yawns. It looks like a snake opening its mouth to swallow prey. Yeah that's why we call your girlfriend in college. Thilo seen yes. Exactly that's exactly that and her stripes and the tail that was rigid in who was so their jaws were muscular but not overly muscular that actually comes into play they had forty six teeth but studies show that their job was get this too weak to even kill kill a sheep. They're adept for small game like rabbits and other so they had a bounty put on him. Thousands were killed all four crime. They did not commit now. It's not. I'd say that they weren't guilty but what they did was. They promptly escaped from the outlets of handmaid's Los Angeles under and today. They still wanted on a bounty. They survive as soldiers of fortune. If you're in need if you can find them maybe you could hire the team so anyway they they're not. I'm sure they were responsible for killing some she because they probably came in packs and or small ones but hyenas dingoes were. We're what was actually killing. All the sheep. They killed them anyway because they didn't use commonsense they just use knee-jerk reactions because look scary like you said between Green eight thousand eight hundred eighty eight and well. That's the dingoes weren't busy eating babies. Yes exactly I was listening while there you go so between eighteen eighty eight and nineteen KENO nine. The Tasmanian government paid one dollar in their currency per head the equivalent of one hundred dollars Australian or more. Now that's actually a lot of money for dead adult diocese tin shillings for pups and they ended up paying out. Two thousand five hundred under eighty-three your money right. They were using English money at the time. They paid a pound But it was their version of it so it was English but like Canadian English. Well it had like pictures of their favorite thieves on it because Australia. You what I love you know where they put the thieves before Australia America. We're like oh so one of the craziest thing to think back to the Revolutionary War Times. Now then I'm going to go off on a historical tangent here but no seriously if you're back there like who are the good guys who were the bad guys you couldn't tell by Accent everybody British found at the time that regional all dialects was the best way to distinguish there so those bounties combined with the dingoes and things that are competing with food a Lotta dogs were brought over there to pray being killed off and then lack of genetic diversity and unfortunately there was this big distemper epidemic in the captive captive ones led to their believed extinction put all that into a blender and poof. You've got an extinct species and the last known silo seem to be killed in the wild for sure sure was shot in nineteen thirty so last captive file a scene. Benjamin was trapped in the Florentine Valley in Southern Tasmania. Ania in Nineteen thirty-three and knowing who is one of the last they they they took extra good care of it. Wait wait nope no again. It actually went to the Hobart Arzu where it live for three years and died in September nineteen thirty six because fucking neglect literally. They left it outside and it died. There is conjecture it's funny because people love to argue on the Internet now whether bin was actually a male or a female even though the people had it said he was a male and they named him Ben but video analysis. Now they froze it zoomed in boom. Its got nuts so it is a larger sized mammals. It's not hard to figure out uh-huh sexy Guana. I am not so sure. People argue about John six in hysteria nation. All the time uh-huh Damn you anyway. When I'm sexy Iguana I put some very wide on? I'm just going to get some red wine baby baby with that Taylor threat. Was that actually the end of the species. We're we're quick. You actually had to Guana when we were in high school. I did really the joke. Well no because I've experienced there's no way to know what sex your own all right but what I want to know is was that actually the end of the species we're going we do explore that and a whole lot more. No sexy and iguanas involved. When we come back on hysteria fifty one the job with it here? Thanks for tuning into this week's episode. If you enjoy ridiculous content and get to your nearest cosmic communication device spread the word your friends family coworkers or nearby nerves were available in spotify Google play Sheba music. I mean mean Apple Music Poor wherever you listen if you have an idea for our show or would like to propose a theme sending email to close encounters slurred kind gmail.com. That's close encounters slurred kind at G MAIL DOT COM. Shoot us a message on facebook. Have a great day and we look forward to falling even deeper into anti-matter minute with you. Next time on close encounters it was the slurred it. Benjamin I don't know that I mean I don't know that Jakko song the way that you do but now it stuck in my head and in all I'm getting is dedicated. Did a edited that Peru. Little known fact. Michael Jackson was such a big fan of the last ask stylists and he wrote that Song Ben About it that or is pet rat but I mean one of the other have a monkey named bubbles. Yes use a chimp champ. And thank you. I said Ben. The two of US look now literally wrote a song about his rat. The original title speed Buggy from going back to Russia. I WanNa know Brent was bend then the last one I don't mean right. I'm talking about the Thilo scene. Yeah in such a timely matter official protection of the species by the Tasmanian government was introduced on July tenth nineteen thirty six fifty nine days before been died in captivity. Because here so care so they give you some context here. Six years prior the last one was shot in the wild that we know of and fifty nine days after this happened the last known captivity one in captivity died young. That's like put never. Yeah where are you going to get political. No I was but I'll go. I'll go sexual instead. That's like putting on a condom the next day I I mean the the toothpaste is out of the two but reports do keep deep and at that time kept trickling in them. It hasn't stopped some back in the day there was a scene was reported. Shot and photographed in Ma Bonner in one thousand nine hundred others also possible nineteen fifty seven citing from helicopter. An animal killed in Sandy Cape at night in nineteen sixty one was tentatively identified. Eh as a thylacine however tentatively means I don't know or whatever well the results of subsequent searches indicated a strong possibility of survival of the species in Tasmania into the nineteen. Sixty yeah they have. Lots of evidence searches by Dr Eric. Gulia and David Flay in the north west of Tasmania found footprints and droppings. They think and attributed to the animal. It was actually just my pet. WOMBAT spooked at the time. Weren't there also. They heard vocalisations matching the descriptions of those of the filing Silas Deane and the local people were like. Yeah they're still here absolutely. Unfortunately we can't play for you a scene because there's no recordings of them are known recordings of of them once. My pups are weird. I will record them for you for thank you despite all of this. No rock solid. Evidence has been found to point to the survival of violent the scenes that is true in between nine hundred sixty seven and nineteen seventy-three zoologist Jeremy Griffith and dairy farmer to the stars James Malay- conducted what is regarded what is the most intensive. Please Molly In most extensive search ever carried out they actually included exhaustive searches and surveys along Tasmania's west coast installation of automatic camera stations. To take pictures of anything move by investigations of claimed sightings and in seventy two the creation of the filing piloting Expeditionary Research Team with Dr Bob Brown which concluded without finding any evidence of the thylacine existence actually murder murder. The problem was those automatic camera. Stations the late sixties early seventies. So the camera actually say stop Mr Thylacine. Please wait moving too fast Yeah someone have to change the bulb. It's like it's actually the eighteen sixty s at this point. Someone's got a hold up the flash the actual flash which The thylacine held the status of endangered species until the nineteen eighties. This is because international standards of the time stated in an animal cannot be declared officially extinct linked until fifty years had confirmed record yeah and it was declared extinct by the International Union for Conservation of nature in eighty two and by the Tasmanian Manian government in one thousand nine hundred eighty six for those four years where they just like holding out hope against hope more like yeah. It was sitting on someone's desk like Oh yeah like shit I I gotTa do this. They were just busy listening to bend the whole. So here's the big quick. Actually they actually said is the faculty is still there and they said no sir. Hugh don't have to look no more We're fuxing I love me. Someone does Brent. Is it gone a lot of limit. I'M GONNA say no it's not I don't believe it is in my heart of hearts reports. I'm still pop up. People seen all the time. Actually literally people are coming out and saying and this isn't just random people these are zoologists farmers conservation in fact that the Australian Rare Fauna Research Association reports having thirty eight hundred sightings on file from mainland Australia since nineteen thirty six official extinction. Yeah the Australian Rare Fauna Research Association are are you. You have to say it like that because of property glacier. I don't know. In Nineteen eighty-two a researcher with Tasmania Parks Wildlife Service observed what he believed to be seen for two three minutes during the night in northwestern. Mania is a researcher. And he's going like that's the only thing that that could be but you know it was was actually alien and the guys like what is a guy to do to get seen around here then. An eighty five aboriginal tracker Kevin Cameron Discovered Five Photographs S.. which appear to show digging in which he stated he took in Western Australia and I actually have those photos? I'll post them there behind brush. 'cause it's digging but it's one of those things you're like. What the fuck is it? If it's not but unfortunately he doesn't have the animal in front of them so they can't really verify that it was but it stuff like that that really makes me think there's probably a small population of them. A little known fact Kevin Cameron Lesser known brother. James Cameron There will be thylacines in the next Avatar. Well one can hope but they're gonNA glow and fly and you can hook them with your weird outward spinal cord I also might have made all that comes down your rat tail. That's true we we bring the rat tail full circle then bringing up a rat. Tails in January of Nineteen ninety-five of parks and wildlife. Officer reported observing a scene in the Ping Pian Ghana region of northeastern Tasmania in the early hours of the morning. And the point that I'm getting at is these are wildlife officers officers researchers zoologists that are coming up and saying I saw according to the Department of Primary Industries Parks Water and environment meant Or see what would the acronym for this one be pip. We according to pit voice there have been eight. Unconfirmed mm confirmed thylacines. Citing reports between twelve twenty sixteen and Twenty nineteen With the last unconfirmed visual coming earlier this year so it's interesting that they keep coming in and we have photos. We have a bunch of photos from back in two thousand five when a tourist took them but unfortunately was walking away and they're not stopping is right it continues over and over and over and you know th the tough thing about sightings. Is that often. You're from far are way. And as we mentioned before these do look similar to wolves dogs even Dingos so you could conceivably see something to that edifact and mistaken for a scene with the best best of intentions best of it you know and they always say that the three things you're looking for if you're looking for you're trying to see is number one if they open their mouth or something. There's no other animal that that opens. Its mouth like that number two is if you can see the stripes that is a telltale sign that it is a number three three the tail. The tail is long bony. It's very distinct looking so those are kind of the things you're looking for. If you're going on one of those walkabouts for for for Tasmanian Tigers. ABC taxis yeah so so. Let's let's get to our thoughts. Let's let's bring this one home. Well we talked about earlier we were talking about. What will we bring back? Well that is something that we've talked a lot about in this genetic cloning. That's one of my thoughts is this is one of those animals that they should do and unfortunately back in ninety nine. There was a lot of talk of. We're going to clone this thing and then Other scientists are like you don't have enough genetic material or anything like that and that kind of fell by the wayside but I think that the couple thanks to my thoughts on the editor. I think it'd be one of those animals that was unfairly killed so bring them back like speaking of tigers all the other species. Tagger that we've killed off as we're fucking terrible and we're human. They deserve to be brought back. So overly dramatic about it chuck. The other thing is I believe that there probably is a small population but the chance of that being real is dwindling by the day and I think that there should be a huge effort putting into tried. Tried to prove if that's true or not and if it is you know the thing is they're not the they're shy they don't WanNa be seen and it's a learned response to stay the fuck away from people by now right. They learned their lesson. They talked about in wailing times when like the Humpback Whale Humpback where the sperm whale was so aggressive. They would Kaptai capsized ships just when they saw them now. They don't even know if those are the gray. Why don't remember which will now they don't give a shit because it's it was a learned response wants? That's now went away in one hundred fifty years they were they were actually just mistaking it. They thought it was Wales but it was actually the blue. Oh yeah he will lovecraft. Oh my goodness is bumping on all cylinders John for real do you think they're still around around. It would not surprise me. I guess that's what I'm saying. I if we had some sort of magical ability to to Omni view every animal at the same time and go is it real. Does it exist. Is it not. You could tell me that they're all gone. I'd be like Oh that's unfortunate but I understand because because once a breeding population gets too small. You just can't do it anymore. You could also tell me that listen. They held on. They've they've stayed really remote they're nocturnal and they've got a large enough breeding population to be to be in in existence but not large enough to be seen all the time. I would believe that to make sense. It's funny like the Kodiak bear from that Kodiak Kylo is the largest bear. It's roughly the size of a polar bear but they way more. They are one of the only species that is on a remote island with such a small population appellation. Yet because of that there was changes to where inbreeding doesn't affect them does with others and that is something that can happen overtime. Now has that has been in the The Komodo dragon do they are they. They're they're on Komodo island and I I don't think they're really found much outside of crazy. Ed they're not venomous. But they are bike. Kills you because their mouth is so diseased but a fun fun and so they have something Komo with conspiracy about. That's right truth. I spit death like I don't know I mean I'm working on my rap skills. Is the rap. Grab Newsweek pinchers heavy. I told you before I spit bars and caused scars that it. So that's our thoughts Maybe we are What's the word I WANNA use cautiously optimistic? Hillary and one that we both think is possibility at the same time. Yeah and I think that the the amount of sites and the quality of of the site. That's not to say that Joe blow the sees. It isn't true but when someone's trained in the region no-one animals are and they go. I saw a violent scene has a little more more behind it or their when they take photos and things like that that show it so last question Fast forward thirty years we either found them or or clone them they exist again. There's not a ton of them but there's enough to where you can buy one You're buying one aren't you man. I tell you what got three dogs. They take up a lot of time So it's going to depend on if assistant. Ray really wants to take that under his belt because because he's he's the one who does how sitting for us is he's on board then bring it on. Hey Yeah you shouldn't use the bag file. I'll teach you to go. I'LL GO I. Ah in a opened his mouth all the way through a treat to. It'll be awesome. I'll be like you can't kill me. You can't even kill a fucking cheap you'll loser and it'll go Come over for lead Ed Right Corner Yeah. I read online. That dogs are so used to being scratched by us that now when you scratch behind their ears it releases endorphins. So what. I pet behind my dogs years ago endorphins endorphins and it drives Lisa crazy. Probably because I'll just say it at random nine to ten minutes endorphins endorphins endorphins and shot the fact to beautiful marriage. She's very lucky toward Jeff. Sandwiches John where did they tell us their thoughts on this beautiful maybe extinct creature with a pouch. I know we have listeners in Australia. Tasmania we'd love to hear from them and the rest of you. In Our facebook discussion. In group hysteria nation go to facebook dot com search hysteria nation. But down your vegemite sandwiches long enough to let us know what's going on with the Tasmanian Tiger and if you guys have actually actually seen it or know someone who has a story about it or if it's all crazy bullcrap who and we didn't even get into a lot of the parts there's also so parts about they declared it extinct for logging contracts so that they could move in on its land. There's a lot of parts of this that I didn't go down that road Let us know your the thoughts on hysteria. Nation or tweet to us at Hysteria fifty-one bod. That's the official show twitter. We also have our own individual twitter accounts. Brent is at the Brent hand. That's my at Golfo. Light One G. O. F. O. L. I. T. E. The number one. No part of that is spelt the way it sounds like it should be nope and don't forget to also tweet to fourth hand media. That's another channel where on there and all the other shows knows we're involved with and you can look up for in media on facebook. Just search fourth hand patriotic matron dot com slash hysteria. Fifty one you you can get this. Extra episodes are monthly skype interviews. I'm doing with a random person every month and you you can also get a t shirt. You can get poster center stickers. I should I dial plural. And if you're lucky because I do some transfers some trades with other shows you might get stickers from other shows to do that quite a bit right now. I've got a bunch from SOFA king that they're doing ours. We're doing there and you can also get cousy because everyone needs ice cold beverage toast Jones show. Yeah that's true too for a nominal fee. Hey if I go on sabbatical again. We'll pay you at this point. You Know Shit right also voicemail. Seven seven three six six nine seven two seven seven again. That's seven three six six nine seven two seven seven seven but if he forgot any of these things there's one spot they can go hysteria. Fifty one dot com dot com tele. Friend tell them to tune in on Mondays K.. AGR A radio eight central nine eastern. I said the opposite. I always use nine eight central. That's hard to say backwards. TV ATV has been doing that. Since born. And next time Brent. I think we should listen to some of those voicemail. We're GONNA have to start digging through the piles and piles for miles of voicemail. So yeah we're going to do that now that you're back for a week or two before you get beaten. Somewhere gas sues back back again. Who lows back? Tell a friend is going to change those words pellet you have it thank you. You're on your back so hello again. The scene I WANNA stuffed one. Everyone told me where I can find the stuff that will soon. That'll be fun and I'll poke people with tail because you know it's gotta be stiff with with that set. I've been John's been conspiracy but stay. Woke meet sex over. Yeah that's it. For another edition of Hysteria. Fifty one John and Brent will be back next week we've yet more of the unexplained the unexplored unheard of. Oh if it's unheard of how would they know about it anyway. If you want to suggest a topic give us your thoughts or just make fun of Conspiracy Marisa Bolt. That's my favorite join us. In Our facebook discussion group. Hysteria nation just log onto facebook and search hysteria nation. or You you can always tweet us at hysteria. Fifty one pod listening to four hundred shines.