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Otsego Herald

November 7, 2013

British Retreat

From the Otsego Herald

for Saturday, Nov. 6, 1813

Compiled, with comments

by HUGH C. MacDOUGALL

Gen Proctor’s Withdrawal

Montreal, Oct. 18 — Major General Proctor having sustained by the unfortunate capture of the squadron on Lake Erie, the loss of a very considerable proportion of his military force, which was serving on board that fleet, as well as the principal heavy ordinance necessary for the defense of his military positions—commenced his retreat from the Fort of Sandwich [today’s Windsor, Ontario], on the 24th Sept.; having previously dismantled the posts of Amherstburgh and Detroit, and burned and destroyed every public building and stores of every description.

The retreating regular force consisting of a small detachment of Royal Artillery, a troop of Provincial Dragoons, and the remains of the 41st Regiment, in all about 440 rank and file—which was accompanied by a body of Indian warriors from 10 to 1500....

The American army...followed the route of Major Gen. Proctor’s corps, which having been much retarded by the slow progress of his batteaux [supply boats], they were enabled to come up with the rear guard and loaded boats on the 3rd inst. [October] and succeeded in capturing the whole.

Maj. Gen. Proctor being thus deprived of the means of supporting his little army, was under necessity of awaiting the enemy’s attack; which took place at 4 o’clock on the evening of the 5th inst. near the Moravian Village.

A six pounder [cannon] on the flank, was by some unpardonable neglect, left destitute of ammunition, and the enemy...pressed upon that part of the line, which wanting the support of artillery, was forced by the superior numbers of the enemy.

Major General Proctor exerted himself to rally the troops, who being exhausted with fatigue, not having received any provisions the previous day were unable to make adequate exertion to resist the superior numbers by which they were assailed.

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