McARTHUR TO WORTHINGTON
Fruit Hill Decr 7th 1813
I parted with the remaining fragment of my Brigade on the 16th. Ult at Fort George, the troops there, having embarked on board Com. Chancy's fleet for Sackets-harbour, and arrived here on the 4th Inst. I suffered much from indisposition during my stay at Detroit and on my passage down the Lake, which was also the case with the most of the troops; I am now considerably recovered, tho not entirely. I am waiting for orders to attend Hulls trial, which I under- stand is to be at Albany next month.
We are all anxiety here, to hear from Genls Wilkinson & Hampton, as everything depends on thier success. Was i.t not, that I am confident that Genl Armstrong, who planed the expedition to Montreal - possesses the best of information and superior Military skill, I should be apprehensive that too large a British force was left in the rear of Genl. Wilkinson and I cannot but re- gret extreamly that Genl. Harrison's intended expedition against the British & Indians at Burlington Bay did not succed. The militia of New York were called on to join us, they accepted the invitation and many of them had actually armed at F. George; several influential Canadians left their families and pro- perty and attached themselves to us & I doubt not but many more would have joined us on our march. The Indians who were with the British were becoming discouraged and dissatisfied and would probably have left them on our approach. In short a successful attack on the British at the head of Lake Ontario, would at once have put at rest all apprehentions of a renewal of hostilities on the part of the Northwestern Indians. I am apprehensive however, that the result will disaffect the discourage our friends, and incourage our enemies. When I left F. George, there was from the best information, about 1000 of the N. Wern. Indians about Burlington and from 3. to 500 from Grand river, the British regular force in the rear of Genl. Wilkinson from 3 to 5000. Forts Niagara & George were Garrisoned entirely by militia whose term of service would expire about this time Should those posts be neglected they may yet fall into the hands of the enemy. I hope, however, that this will not be the case, and that such measures may be adapted with respect to -the Indians as will prevent them from ever again joining the British. This will doubtless require some manage- ment Mackinack, Chicagau and the strait between Lakes Huron & Superior must be taken possession of as early as possible, and garrisons kept at those places; and the British traders, who are now very numerous on those waters, kept en- tirely out of that country, It will also be necessary to have proper trading houses established under the authority of our Government, for the purpose of supplying those wretched beings with such articles, as will enable them to subsist independent of any communication with the British. Those hints must doubtless be unnecessary from me, as the means proper to be pursued must be obvious to every person who will turn his attention to the subject.
I am Dear sir yours respectfully
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