Essays in American History Dedicated to Frederick Jackson Turner

Cover of book Essays in American History Dedicated to Frederick Jackson Turner
Categories: Nonfiction

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THE NORTHWEST IN 1779 The occupation of the northwest by George Rogers Clark and his band of frontiersmen established a claim for the United States to the transmontane territory which the later negotiations of Franklin, Adams, and Jay made effective; but the brilliant diplomacy of these agents might have proved fruitless had the Virginia troops failed in maintaining their position on the distant frontier. Throughout the year following that of the occupation this appeared to the leaders an almost hopeless task on account of the many difficulties confronting them. The soldiers who had followed Clark so gallantly into the wilderness were, like all frontier militia, satisfied with the accomplishment of their immediate task, and now demanded the right of returning to their homes. The pleadings of their leader persuaded only about eighty to remain to secure the results of their enterprise. Colonel Clark was obliged to replace this loss by enlisting the volatile and, in his opinion, untrustworthy French of the villages into the companies of the Illinois battalion. With this small and untried band he prepared to hold the whole territory of the northwest against the forces which the British could muster from Canada. It had not been expected that the Virginians would thus be isolated, for the Continental Congress had planned to capture Detroit by a force sent out from Fort Pitt. Unfortunately, the successful peace with the Indians as a preliminary to this expedition was followed by the futile acts of General Mclntosh, the leader of this expedition,who proved himself unfitted to cope with the conditions of frontier warfare. This failure and the critical situation, in the east caused General Washington to abandon, temporarily, active operations in the west on the part o...

Essays in American History Dedicated to Frederick Jackson Turner
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