OSL _________ TO MEIGS
Cleveland Ohio Sept 8th 1812
On the 1st inst. I left Detroit & came to Amherstbrg or Ft Malden & embarked on the 3d & arrived at this place this morning -- During my stay at those Posts, I endeavored to procure all the information in my power as to the views & proceedings of the Enemy
They have endeavored to impress upon us a belief that as armeistic has taken place, beginning on the 24th ulto & continuing for forty days with four days notice before hostilities should commence, and this to extend to the whole union, or at any rate to the whole western army. This information the officers at Detroit certainly intended to communicate by a Flag to our army if within striking distance progressing towards Detroit. At Malden I ascertained to my satisfaction that this armistis line entered only to the armies under Genls Dearborn & Prevost but since I come to this place I am assured by the commanding officer Genl Wadsworth that he is well assured that no such armistice has taken place at all I am of opinion that Fort Wayne ought to be immediately reinforced, if not done as a considerable number of Indians have gone against that place from Ft Malden confident of success: That Vincinnes & Ft Massac ought also to be strengthened as I believe theore is no doubt but they are determined to reduce these places if possible also.
I am of opinion that the Enemy is at this time engaged in erecting a Fort at the foot of the Rapids of Miami in order to cut off the passage to Detroit & that q uarter.
The enemy have removed all the Ordinance & Military stores from Detroit & I am informed there are not more than forty regulars in that place & about from 120 to 150 Militia but no Indians.
I am of opinion that five hundred resolute Troops would tale both the Fort & Town of Detroit and that from two to three thousand Men of that description would be fully sufficient to reduce Fort lialden Their force from the best information is Tvro hundred regulars 300 Militia & about 500 Indians
The Fort is unfinished on the rear, which is supposed to be the Most accessible part, and a t the iorth East corner the weakest being only picketts, indeed the Front or river side is nothing but Picketts & the ditch on the sides as yet only partially completed.
I am of opinion that great exertions ought to be made to reduce Malden as soon as possible & before they get the place made strong, which they will lose no time in completing, but at this time they are not working on it, at any rate on the outward side. I a m induced to think they have no w ater in the Fort, one of the officers told me they had not till the,r dug a Well lately but I find they have just began a sub- teranean passage from the river into the Fort. This I think ill take some time to complete.
It will take them some time to mount the Cannon taken at Detroit. There w ere nine of the 24 pounders Four of them are to be mounted at F Malden & five are sent down to Ft Erie.
If our Troops move on towards Detroit & intend to make a discent on Fort Malden I am of opinion that the army ought to halt at the river Raisin & build boats to cross the river, because any boats built on the
lake or otherwise than up some of tlose siall rivers, the Enemy could
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