Letter to Robert Hays from Andrew Jackson

Headquarters 7 M District 4 miles below Neworleans
Decbr. 26th. 1814

Dr. Colo.

            On the 23rd. instant, the British effected a landing withing nine miles of Neworleans in force at a point I had directed to be well guarded, the were on the bank of the Mississippi had come up a canal, which I had directed to be stopped, and guarded--by three different orders, before it was known to me or any person in Neworleans Coffee & Carroll had reached the vicinity of Neworleans two days before and were encamped 4 miles above, it was 12 M. when I recd the information. I put the Troops in motion, leaving Genl Carrol with his Brigade to guard the city and protect my left & rear, from any of the enemy that might effect a landing from Lake Borgne or chefmonteur--and at 5 ocl. P.M. with what regulars I had, Genl Coffees Brigade 800 strong and a few Volunteers of Louisiana in all 1750--marched to measure strength--and at 9 oclock attacked him, and drove him at all points--but the darkness of the night occasioned by the Fog occasioned some confusion in my ranks, and I withdrew my troops, from their advanced position and remained on the field of Battle untill 5 oclock the nex morning when I retired to the present position hearing they were landing more Troops at Chefmontieur, and that my Troops stationed there had fell back--we have lost some fine fellows, all friends are safe, our loss small compared to theirs, we Took sixty odd prisoners amonghst whom is major [Samuel] Mitchell, who was at washington--time will only permit me to add, that the enemy the next day was reinforced, and we are now in sight of each other--The Kentuckey Troops not arived, Genl Coffee and his corps has added fresh laurels to their Brow, my staff {family} behaved well, as did the officers and other corps--
        private--I fear the enemy obtained, their footholt through the treachery of the guard--they were of the militia of the country--
       Where is Mrs. Jackson--is she on her way--pray advise me--if at home tell her and my little son, may god bless them and your family--adieu--

                                                                                                                   Andrew Jackson

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