12.23.2014

Copy of a letter to a member of the house of representatives, dated New-Orleans, December 23, 1 o'clock, at night

Copy of a letter to a member of the house of representatives, dated New-Orleans, December 23, 1 o’clock, at night.

Before I had time to fold up the letter I wrote to you to-day, the alarm gun was sounded, and I forth with repaired to the tented field. The enemy, without being discovered, made the river at general Villiary’s plantation to-day about twelve o’clock. They have not, it is supposed, all yet debarked. The entry was made up at bayou, into which a canal from Villary’s plantation empties. Gen. Jackson with general Coffee’s men, the 7th regiment, a part of the 44th, some of the town militia and some other troops, arrived about 7 o’clock, supported by the schr. Caroline.
We commenced the engagement about half past seven, which continued pretty hot until about a quarter after nine, when the firing ceased on the part of the British first. I cannot tell the number of killed or wounded on either side yet. Towards the close of engagement, our company of riflemen was broken by a charge from the enemy and has suffered a good deal. Captain Bealle commanded the right and myself the left of the company. I had then with me only fifteen men, three of whom were wounded; and I had also eleven prisoners, a part of the army that was at Washington. In this situation I thought it best to order my men to march towards the swamp, and accordingly marched about half way to town, back of the plantations. I have safely delivered the prisoners, and am now at home very much fatigued. I shall set out again before day with my men to the field before day with my men to the field of battle. Our army is well formed, and will not be surprised-tomorrow morning the battle will be renewed-the two armies nearly keep their ground-I believe we have the advantage so far, but I can give you nothing particular. Our army has been reinforced to night by a thousand of general Carroll’s men, and I expect hard fighting to-morrow. The prisoners that our company have made, state their numbers to be about twelve thousand men, and about three thousand debarked, with whom we fought-that they are commanded by General Keene-that there are two regiments of blacks 1,000 men each.

 

Published in the Maryland Gazette-January 26, 1815.

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