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The Life of General The Hon. James Murray
Chapter VII. Quebec, continued


The month of August passed without any sign of decisive action on the part of the General. His situation was one which commands sympathy; he was worn out by exertion, and the almost tropic heat of a Canadian summer prostrated his energy. He seemed dazed by the failure at Montmorency, and to a man of his sensitive temperament the knowledge that his chief subordinates disapproved of his dispositions, be it said with good reason, must have added to his discomfort. Even Carleton had apparently expressed himself against the Montmorency venture.

Several expeditions were despatched to chastise the villages on both banks of the river so far as his control extended, and the bombardment of the town by the batteries at Pointe aux Peres was continued ruthlessly. The former was a military measure that added seriously to the difficulties of the French commanders. Not only were their supplies from the surrounding villages cut off, but the inhabitants themselves were driven to seek shelter in the upper part of the colony, and consumed food that would otherwise have been available. The latter measure —that is, the bombardment—was not useful as affecting the military situation. The range was too great for accuracy with the poor artillery of the period, and the French batteries suffered less than the town, a great part of which was laid in ruins, and valuable stories of cord wood were burnt, a result which recoiled almost disastrously on the victors when at last they became masters of the place.

The only movement bearing directly on the campaign was a reconnaissance in force up the river under the command of Murray, the naval force being under Admiral Holmes. The flotilla of flat-bottomed boats available above the town had been considerably augmented, but several failures to add to the war-ships in the upper river had occurred, and Holmes' squadron was dangerously weak. The main object of the expedition was to seek the French frigates which had retired up to the River Richelieu, and now mounted higher still, as the French seem to have been well informed of what was afoot. Wolfe's instructions to Murray seem to indicate no settled plan. He was merely to seek every opportunity of fighting the enemy.

The force detailed was a considerable one of 1260 men, and it attracted a good deal of attention from the enemy, who had also been informed by a deserter of the movement. De Bougainville, with a strong detachment, was sent up the river immediately, to take command of all the troops above Quebec, and from that time the defence of the river above the town was greatly strengthened. I cannot but think that at the consultations, when the question of how best to attack the enemy was raised, the brigadiers must have suggested, as they afterwards reiterated, an attack on the north shore at a distance above the town. If this were the case, it was a mistake to draw the enemy's attention that way, by despatching a large body on a mere reconnaissance, the more so that a certain amount of information already existed. It appears probable that Murray's real object was to gain information to enable him to report on the means of making such an attack.

In company with Admiral Holmes, Murray joined the ships on August 6, having marched at night probably to avoid discovery by the enemy. An interesting point occurs in his first report to Wolfe: "On my way I made a feint to land at St. Michel, where they are entrenched and sufficiently on their guard." In the draft of this report, which is before me, come the words: "I did this with a view to," but these were erased. We are left in doubt what the intention was, but it seems very probable that the sentence might be completed by the words, "ascertain if an attack at this place was now possible."

On the 8th (August) he had arrived off Pointe-aux-Trembles, and here he made an attack which was unsuccessful. He gives an interesting description of the action, which, however, I need not quote; but it may be noted that the attempt was made close to the church on the Point, and considerably higher up than the place which will be referred to again later.

On the 9th (August) Murray established himself at St. Anthony on the south bank, and sent a note to Wolfe, which is rather characteristic:

"I have attacked them three times with various success. Hitherto they may sing Te Deum, but the tune will certainly be mine in a few days . . . the ship scheme (no doubt the capture of the French frigates) won't do. I fear we want water to carry us much higher."

On the 11th (August) he is still at St. Anthony, awaiting a suitable tide to enable him to carry out the attack on Deschambeau, some fourteen and a half miles further upstream, which formed one of the objects of the expedition. The tide was not suitable until the 18th, and Murray brought his troops up at night and succeeded in outwitting the enemy and destroying the stores, which were of considerable importance. After this experience Murray made a significant report to Wolfe, which included the following.

"Tides are more aporte (suitable) to attempt anything you may think proper against the north shore, from Cap Rouge to Jacques Cartier ... a landing from Gentleman's Bay may be stole at any time but it must be by night and at high water. The impossibility of doing it under the cover of your ships and the nature of the shore makes that necessary. The night of September 2 the soonest the tide will answer."

On the night of September 2 the tide turned to flood at about 10.10 p.m. There would be no moon. Murray's advice clearly was to approach "Gentleman's Bay" by land, embark in flat-bottomed boats after dark, and effect a landing on the north shore above Cap Rouge. He was opposed to using the ships, as their movements could not be concealed.

The report quoted is dated August 25, and at nightfall on this date Murray returned and rejoined at Point Levis. He found that Wolfe had been very ill during his absence, and was scarcely yet convalescent. There was some tendency on Wolfe's part to blame Murray for a too prolonged stay in the upper river; but it is hardly possible that he could have completed the object in view at Deschambeau before the 19th, or have returned before the 21st, so that I do not think there is much real ground for complaint; besides, it appears that Murray awaited Wolfe's decision whether further operations were to be conducted.

Immediately after Murray's return there w ere important councils of the General and his principal officers, together with Admiral Saunders. Wolfe's illness had caused h„n to view the situation despondently : he recognised the mistakes that had been made, and being himself too unwell to eontinue to direct, he instructed the brigadiers to consult together as to the best steps to take. The admiral had intimated that there was little time to lose, as the fleet could not, in his opinion, safely remain in the river much longer. The document which Wolfe caused to be addressed to the brigadiers on this occasion was remarkable. Although not dated, I think from other evidence that it issued from the headquarters at Montmorency on August 27, and was addressed in the first place to General Monckton at Point Levis. Townshend and Murray were both at Montmorency, and no doubt the intention to call a council at Point Levis was communicated to them.

The letter ran as follows :

"That the public service may not suffer by the General's indisposition, he begs the brigadiers will be so good to meet and consult together for the public utility and advantage, and consider the best method to attack the enemy.

"If the French army is attacked and defeated, the General concludes, the town would immediately surrender, because he does not find they have any provisions in the place.

"The General is of opinion that the army should be attacked in preference to the place, because of the difficulties of penetrating from the lower to the upper town, in which attempt neither the guns of the shipping or of our own batteries could be of much use.

"There appears to be three methods of attacking the army. ' First: In dry weather a large detachment may march in a day and a night so as to arrive at Beauport (fording the Montmorency eight or nine miles up) before day in the morning. It is likely they would be discovered upon this march on both sides of the river. If such a detachment penetrates to the intrenchments, and the rest of the troops are ready, the consequences are plain.'

"'Second: If the troops encamped here (i.e. Montmorency Camp) pass the ford with the falling water, and in the night march on directly towards the Point of Beauport, the light infantry have a good chance to get up the Woody Hill, trying different places and moving quick to the right would soon discover a proper place for the rest. The upper redoubt must be attacked and kept by a company of Grenadiers. Brigadier Monckton must be ready off the Point of Beauport to land when our people get up the hill, for which signals must be appointed.'

"'Third: All the chosen troops of the army may attack at Beauport at low water. A diversion must be made across the ford an hour before the second attack.' "

It is very difficult to believe that Wolfe was the author of this document He was asking for the consideration of the best procedure, and yet defines three schemes—or perhaps I should say two, for the two last are almost identical, which had already been tried and been unsuccessful; moreover, he must have known that the brigadiers were opposed to them. I can only suppose that he was still too unwell to attend to the matter, but following the urgent solicitations of Murray, had given instructions to call a council, and had left the wording to a subordinate.

At all events, there is a complete absence of any mention of the original conception of an attack at St. Michel or of any movement above the town, and the only reference to it at this period is contained in a letter to Admiral Saunders, written on August 30: "My ill state of health hinders me from executing my own plan [ it is of too desperate a nature to order others to execute." It is, however, not easy to see how an attack on St. Michel, or any other place, should be more desperate than any of the three schemes referred to above.

The "reply" of the brigadiers was delivered on August 30 (it was dated August 29), and in it they definitely decided against Wolfe's suggestions, and recommended the abandonment of Montmorency and a descent on the north shore above the town, where "we are (shall be) between him (The French commander) and his provisions, and between him and the army opposing General Amherst.'' The "reply " was accompained by a "plan" for carrying out the advice, and this plan makes it perfectly clear that In proposing a landing on the north shore above the town the brigadiers had no thought of any place in the neighbourhood of Quebec, such as St. Michel. The army was to proceed by land and encamp on the other (west) side of the Etchemin, and the landing was to take place between the Cap Rouge River and the Height of St. John.

There is some misconception regarding this reply of the brigadiers. The copy hitherto quoted as representing their views is similar to, or taken from, the one contained in the British Museum (Newcastle Papers, Addl. MS. 32895, f. 90). This is obviously not an original, for it is unsigned, and written on the same sheet and in the same handwriting as the copy of Wolfe's letter, to which it is a reply. A copy signed by the three brigadiers exists in the Public Record Office (Chatham Papers, vol. 50), which has been unaccountably overlooked. This differs from the "Newcastle" copy in several details, and is no doubt the genuine document submitted to Wolfe. In his Life of his Ancestor, Col. C. V. Townshend gives the paper taken from "originals" among the Ravnham Papers; but I presume this is unsigned, at all events it is similar to the "Newcastle" copy. The "Newcastle" letter seems to have been a rough draft, subsequently altered, and, especially as to the last paragraph, indicates that the council had some difficulty in wording their answer.

The signed paper in the Chatham correspondence commences with a paragraph which is omitted in the "Newcastle" copy.

"Having met this day, in consequence of General Wolfe's desire, to consult together for the public utility and advantage, and to consider of the best methods of attacking the enemy, we read His Majesty's private instructions, which the General was pleased to communicate to us, and considered some propositions of his with respect to our future operations, and think it our duty to offer our opinion as follows.

Then follows the body of the report, which is the same in both copies, but the last paragraph in the rough draft is quite dissimilar to the signed original. I have put the two below side by side.

Public Record Office Signed Original. With respect to the expediency of making an immediate attack or the postponing it, more effectually to prevent the harvest and otherwise distroy the colony, or with a view to facilitate the operations of General Amherst's armys now advancing into the heart of the country, we cannot presume to advise, although we are fully convinced that the progress of his troops hath, and must still depend upon the detention of, the greatest part of the enemy's force on this side, for the defence of their capital.

"We cannot conclude without assuring the General that whatever he determines to do, he will find us most hearty and zealous in the execution of his orders."

Following the copy in the Newcastle Papers, Mr. Edward Salmon makes some very caustic remarks: "The brigadiers proposed a plan but with the same dip of ink cast doubts on the expediency of carrying it out. If they had been men of less grit and less worthy soldiers one might be forced to unpleasant conclusions."

The correct version in the Chatham Papers is, however, not open to the same comment. It is apparent from the Makers of National History: Wolfe, by Edward Salmon.

With respect to the expediency of making an immediate attack or the postponing it, to be able the more effectually to prevent the harvest and destroy the colony, or with a view of facilitating the operations of our armies now advancing into the heart of the country, we cannot take upon us to advise, altho' we cannot but be convinced that a decisive affair to our disadvantage must enable the enemy to make head against the army under the command of General Amherst already far advanced by the diversion this army has made on this side."

"With respect to the expediency," etc., that a question, not included in the original references, that is, whether the attack should he made immediately, or whether the raiding of the parishes, which had already had an immense effect on the Canadians, should continue, had been conveyed, perhaps by a verbal message, to the brigadiers. Without knowing something of the genesis of the question and the form in which it was put, it is difficult to form a just opinion of the reply. We know, however, that at the very time that the question was put Wolfe had already taken the step of clctaching a strong force, which numbered not less than one-fourth of the available strength, on a raiding expedition down the river,* and it is more than probable that the brigadiers could not acquiesce in this serious weakening of the army. To what extent they had expressed themselves on this subject there is nothing on record to show. But it may well be that the wording of the paragraph, which was apparently the subject of discussion and alteration, was not unconnected with the despatch of this contingent.

They stated a decided opinion on the direct propositions put before them, and a decided opinion on the question asked as to the best method of attacking the enemy ; they gave their reasons and the plan they suggested for carrying it out, but they did not feel it their duty to assume responsibility for the general conduct of the campaign, the more so that, while asking for their views, the Commander-in-Chief had already taken action in a way they could not approve of.

So far as contemporary evidence is concerned, there is nothing to show that the action of the brigadiers in this matter caused any difficulty to the commander. Wolfe, in his letters to Pitt and to Lord Holderness, on September 2 and 9 respectively, merely refers to the unanimity of the brigadiers as to the method of attack. Mante, in his History, written in 1772, quotes the letter without the last paragraph; and perhaps a still better argument against any supposition that the signed document contained anything which could be construed in a sense derogatory to the brigadiers, is the fact that it escaped the mordant wit of the author of A Letter to an Honourable Brigadier-General. This letter, written in 1760, was obviously inspired, if not written, by some one in close contact with the events of the campaign—probably a member of the headquarter staff. It is a bitter attack on Townshend, and it is unbelievable, if an adverse construction could have been put on it, that an opportunity for criticism of this paragraph would have been neglected.

Wolfe accepted the advice of the brigadiers, and at once proceeded to put it into execution. The retirement from Montmorency was effected very skilfully and without loss, and by September 6 the army had been transferred to the ships and boats lying off the Etchemin River. The two war-ships in the upper river had been reinforced by the Lowestoft (frigate, 28 guns), the Hunter (sloop, 10 guns), and the Seahorse 4 (sloop, 20 guns). Thus the naval force was now ample, but the addition only just arrived in time, for a movement was afoot to make an attack on the; Sutherland, and 490 sailors had been despatched from Quebec to bring down the French frigates for that purpose.! It is surprising that this rather obvious action had been so long deferred. The idea was, however, abandoned when the above-named vessels joined the English force (Bougainville correspondence).

The movements of the troops from Montmorency and of the ships up the river were closely watched, and well known to the French. Assuredly the new scheme contained nothing in the nature of a surprise; thus, on September 5 Montcalm's Journal records: "Unc Colonne ennemie de quelque deux mille hommes est montee par terre jusqu'd la riviere d'Etchemin a la cote du Sud." On September 6 he reeords : 'J On a vu marcher des troupes du camp de la p>ointe de Levis et remonter de la meme maniere que la veille." In the Bougainville correspondence we find the report of liemigny, an officer of the Regiment de la Sarre, who commanded the post at Sillery: "La Colonne des ennemis m'a paru estre de 4 mil cinq cents Wmes, y compris les troupes legeres qui formoient Vavant garde." liemigny, it may be noted, was an accurate and careful observer and very little escaped him.

To meet this new danger the French had considerably strengthened the corps under the command of de Bougainville, who was in charge of the defences above Quebec. On September 6 Vaudreuil wrote a letter, which detailed the force at his (de Bougainville's) disposal. From this we learn that:

This gives a total of 2195 men and the cavalry, and they included about 500 regular troops besides a picked body of the Montreal Volunteers, who were regarded as the best troops after the regulars. Two pieces of field artillery had also been sent.

So far as the evidence goes, and it is somewhat meagre, de Bougainville was satisfied that this force would suffice to enable him to repel any probable attack. We are informed that the remainder of the regiment of Guyenne, probably 300 men (the Grenadiers (50 men), and a picquet (50 men) of this regiment already formed part of the force) had been offered to him as an additional reinforcement, and one must conclude from the letters * that he did not desire it. The movements of this regiment became important and somewhat mysterious, and I shall refer to them again ; here it need only be mentioned that the addition of the regiment to de Bougainville's force was a different question to the one that arose afterwards of placing this corps in reserve near Sillery—or between that place and Quebec.

The army which Wolfe was able to collect at the. Etchemin River numbered approximately 3700 men. One strong battalion (Webb's, 48th Foot) was left behind at Point Levis, and the Rangers did not accompany the troops, the greater part of them were absent, as already mentioned. There were also garrisons at Orleans and with the batteries at Pointe-aux-Peres and Levis. It is not at all clear what artillery accompanied the force, and I do not know of any accurate statement of the number of troops that embarked at Goreham's post. In Wolfe's orders the distribution of the troops in boats and ships is given, but the figures arc obviously round numbers, and total to 3ti60. In Knox's Journal the number of men present at the battle of September 13, in the corresponding units, was 3924.

The 7386 N.C.Os. and men included in Wolfe's embarkation return in the previous June (i.e. not including artillery and Rangers) may be accounted for as under:

Expedition above Quebec and the point is of some importance when we remember that the ostensible object in view was to land and entrench a position. There were floating batteries and plenty of naval ordnance, and it may well have been the intention to lard some of the guns thus available. A detachment of artillery, however, did accompany the force. Thus the total number of troops available was certainly small, and it is difficult to explain why a large body of Rangers, with some regulars, the whole amounting to about 1600 men, should have been detached on August 31 to raid the parishes bordering the lower reaches of the river. It would appear that having in hand the important operations now penning, as large a force as possible should have been retained. This detachment did not return until after Quebec had surrendered.*

Before returning to the movements of the army, it will be convenient to trace the movements of the fleet in the upper river anil the corresponding action of the French. During the period of evacuating Montmorency, it is clear that Admiral Holmes had orders to distract the enemy's attention ; but as there were no English troops in the upper river, or at all events very few, it is rather surprising that Bougainville should have concerned himself. Thus on August 29 the Sutherland and the Squirrel were off St. Augustin. On the 31st they had ascended to Pointe-aux-Trembles, and Bougainville followed with his corps. On September 1 the squadron dropped down again to the neighbourhood of Cap Rouge—Bougainville still in attendance. On the 2nd the squadron dropped down river still further to near Goreham's Point, and Bougainville followed to Sillery. After this there was no particular change on either side from the 3rd to the 6th (September). On the 7th the squadron, with all the transports and troops, was off Cap Rouge, and Bougainville shifted his headquarters to this place, which was only a short march away from Sillery. From September 7 to 12 the squadron remained in the neighbourhood of Cap Rouge, and only a few isolated movements took place. Thus the Hunter dropped up twice to Pointe-aux-Trembles and then to Goreham's Point, and the Seahorse was at Goreham's Point until relieved by the Hunter; but these movements did not apparently call for any on Bougainville's part. He remained at Cap Rouge. A good deal was said in the Bougainville correspondence about the amount of marching and countermarching which had to be undertaken by the flying column, but there seems to have been rather exaggerated ideas on the subject. On the English side the plan seems to have been to deceive the enemy with movements of the ships and then to descend on the shore secretly in boats. This, at all events, was the plan outlined by Murray both to Admiral Holmes and to General Wolfe. To the former he had written : " What I attempt against them must be by surprise. I never can surprise them by moving with the fleet." To the latter: "The impossibility of doing it (i.e. making a surprise attack) under cover of your ships . . . makes that necessary (i.e. a night attack)."

There seems little doubt, and the date of the movements confirms this view, that the movement of the ships up and down the river was a part of the plan discussed at the meeting of the generals and the admiral on August 29 and 30. At these meetings Wolfe was not present, though it is quite likely and probable that Murray discussed the point with him when at Montmorency on August 26-27, and no doubt received his orders.

It is now time to return again to Wolfe's army assembled on the ships lying above Goreham's Point on September 6.

In what follows I have collected in detail the sequence of events. Perhaps this may be wearisome to the general reader, but as the result of a good deal of research it will be useful to correct the inaccurate opinions that have been formed on the subject. The object I have in view is to show that General Wolfe did in fact intend to act upon the advice given by the brigadiers, and attack the French communications rather than the French army ; that he suddenly, as the result of information received, altered his intentions, and made the hazardous move on the Plains of Abraham, which resulted in the capture of Quebec ; that the action he fought, which a great many writers represent as a decisive battle, was very far from being so; and that, in fact, it was Murray's operations of the winter and spring, aided in a most important degree by a squadron of the fleet under command of Commodore Swanton, which really brought about the decisive result of the conquest of Canada.

At dawn on the 7th the fleet and transports dropped up with the tide and anchored a little above Cap Rouge, a short mile above the place named by Murray, Gentleman's Ray, and in the morning Wolfe issued his battle orders for the approaching attack. The army was divided into three brigades, that under Murray to contain Otway's (35th), Anstruther's (58th), and the Louisburg Grenadiers, under his kinsman, Alexander Murray. The order concludes thus:

"When the coast has been examined and the best landing places pitched upon the troops will be ordered to disembark, perhaps this nights tide. . . . The corps ordered for embarkation are to carry with them two days' provisions, which they are to receive immediately."

There was a little skirmishing with the enemy floating batteries at Cap Rouge, and the French showed themselves in force, making it quite clear where Bougainville's headquarters were. At 3.30 p.m. the troops entered the flat-bottom boats and made some movements, but obviously nothing was intended immediately, for at 4 o'clock the general, accompanied by three brigadiers, left the fleet and ascended the river on board the sloop Hunter; no doubt Wolfe intended to examine for himself the landing places between Cap Rouge and the Pointe-aux Trembles.

A Tide Table at Quebec in September, 1759.

The undorgiven information on the tides at Quebec on the important days of September, 1759, was kindly prepared by Mr. W. Bell Dawson, Superintendent of the Tidal Survey of Canada. In italics I have added the time of flood and ebb in the neighbourhood of Cap Kouge by adding fifty minutes to the Quebec time, which is near enough for the purpose of the calculations in this volume.

Full moon occurred at Quebec on September 7,1759, at Oh. 28 m.

The morning flood commenced at a little after 4 a.m., and it may have been this tide that Wolfe referred to in the order above quoted, "Perhaps this night's tide." The night of September 7 was full moon, and this would be all against getting the boats up secretly. Nevertheless, the position of the ships one and a half miles above Cap Rouge, where the bulk of the enemy force was, gave them a good start, and they would probably make at least a mile before discovery and almost certainly arrive at the rendezvous a full hour, probably more, before de Bougainville could overtake them. An alternative plan, possibly the one originally intended, would be to start at dusk at about 0.45 p.m. on the tail of the flood, which would carry the boats almost, if not entirely, the whole distance. What gives colour to this is that a demonstration, evidently concerted, took place by the boats of the fleet below the town at Point Levis. At 8.30 p.m. all the boats, manned with sailors and marines, put off and rowed towards the Beauport shore, making apparently as much noise as possible, for Montcalm records: " II sortoit un grand bruit de ces berges et des eris de hourra ! qui si leur dessein etoit d'attaqucr annoncoient du moins qu'elles ne vouloient pas nous sur-prendre." The log of the Pembroke records that this demonstration was: " To make a feint at Beauport, in order to favour the proceedings of General Wolfe above the town.'''' These boats returned on shipboard at midnight.

The troops in the boats at Cap Rouge returned on shipboard at 6.30 p.m. We are not told why ; it is quite possible that Wolfe made a signal from the Hunter (which would be in view of the fleet during the passage to Pointe-aux-Trembles) by rocket or otherwise, that the attack was postponed. During the night the weather, which had been fine and warm, changed, a fresh north-easterly wind sprang up accompanied by rain. The Hunter returned with the night tide, rejoining the fleet at 2 a.m. on the 8th (September). The general and the brigadiers returned by barge.* Whatever the reason may have been, Wolfe decided to make no attack on the night of the 7th-8th (September). It does not seem that either the moon or the weather had anything to do with the decision ; it can only be supposed that, as a result of the reconnaissance, he considered that more precise orders were necessary, and the late hour of return prevented this being done at once. Another reason may have been that the night tide of the following night (8th-9th September) would be more suitable, as the flood begun at Cap Rouge an hour later, but subsequent events do not confirm this.

During the daytime of the 8th (September) no movement took place, but in the afternoon Wolfe issued fresh orders, and from them one can understand to a great extent the views that had been in his mind on the previous day. These orders read as follows:

"At anchor at Cap Rouge, September 8. The Laurel transport with ye Royal American battalion on board, and the Eden and Mary with ye Light Infantry are to proceed with the next tide under the convoy of ye Hunter sloop opposite to ye Pointe-aux-Trembles and come to anchor there."

This part of the order was actually carried out, and without waiting for the tide and favoured by the wind the Hunter and her convoy left at 5 p.m. and arrived off Pointe-aux-Trembles at 8 p.m. This movement was noted and remarked upon by the French (Bougainville Letters), as of course would be the case, as the vessels started during daylight. Wolfe's orders continue:

"The five battalions are to embark in the flat-bottomed boats, so as to be in readiness to put off with the first of the morning. Captain Shadswillbe so good as to conduct them, so as to arrive at the landing place about an hour and a half before high water. If ye two floating batteries cannot keep up. Captain Shads will order some of ye best rowing boats to take them in tow."

From this we learn that Wolfe had discarded Murray's advice to make a surprise night landing. The " first of the morning's flood " would be about 5.15 a.m. Starting at this hour it would be daylight, and the arrival at the landing place would be about 8 o'clock in the morning.

The passage of the ships the evening before had already claimed Bougainville, so that obviously all precautions to oppose a landing would have been taken. The orders continue:

"When Colonel Young perceives that Brigadier Monck-ton's corps is landed, he will fall down opposite to ye place, and endeavour that his people and the light infantry may be put on shore at low water, if it can be done."

From this we learn that Colonel Young was in command of the troops that proceeded up the previous evening, and that the place of landing was below Pointe-aux-Trembles, but the reference to low water is not easy to follow. It would not be "low water" until late in the afternoon, and there may be some error in the instructions. The orders continue:

"The Ann Elizabeth with Bragg's regiment on board, and the Ward with Lascelles', are to fall up after ye flat-bottom'd boats and anchor opposite to ye landing place, so that ye flat-bottom'd boats may endeavour to land them the same time, or if it cannot be done at low water."

From this we sec that the last shred of "surprise" is removed by sending up ships with the boats in the morning, which could not fail to be observed. Here again the reference to low water is obscure, and apparently due to misapprehension. The remainder of these orders is not of immediate interest.

The troops were to be in the boats at 2 a.m. (9th morning) ready for the movement (Knox), but an order was issued evidently late in the afternoon (8th): Seeing that the weather sets in bad, a signal will be made at one o'clock (a.m. on 9th, I presume) to lie fast in case it does not clear up." Presumably this signal was made, for no movement took place. In the morning of the 9th (September) the whole intention was definitely abandoned, " As the weather is so bad that no military operations can take place."

Arrangements were made to put half the troops ashore under the command of Monckton and Murray, in order to refresh the men and relieve the crowded transports. In the evening of the 9th the weather cleared.

A review of these operations leads to certain conclusions which have an important bearing on our subject. The first is that Wolfe certainly did intend to follow the advice of the brigadiers and effect a landing on the north shore near, but below, Pointe-aux-Trembles. It is not possible to accept any other explanation of his acquiescence in the brigadiers' proposals and the elaborate movements undertaken to put them into execution. The second is that had Wolfe made his descent on the night of the 7th-8th (September) he would have succeeded in placing his force astride the enemy's communications and brought about a decisive action. The third is that the dispositions for the attack proposed for the night of the 8th-9th (September) were faulty, by reason of their neglecting the element of surprise, and thus making no use of Murray's experience. The fourth conclusion is that the bad weather of the 8th (September) was in reality an advantage which the commander would have been wise to seize, for whereas the rain could have had little effect on the operations by water, it was an almost complete bar to movement by land, and probably Bougainville would not have been able to defend Pointe-aux-Trembles at all.

The question of what caused this sudden abandonment of the proposal put before him by the brigadiers is an interesting one which I will more fully discuss later; I will here merely emphasise that from September 9 the plan of a descent on the north shore near Pointe-aux-Trembles was definitely abandoned. On the morning of that day Major Barre arrived at headquarters from Goreham's Post. Barre was deputy-adjutant and Wolfe's confidant. Whether he brought some information is only conjecture; at all events, it was shortly after his arrival that the orders were issued for the troops to land on the south shore, and it became clear that no further action was in contemplation for the time being. It was on this date that Wolfe wrote his last despatch, addressed to Lord Holderness. It is in very general terms, and makes no mention of the operations of the two previous days, although it contains an interesting resume of the campaign. Regarding the business immediately in hand, it merely states, "We are now here (in the upper river) with about 3600 men waiting an opportunity to attack them when and wherever they can be best got at."

On September 10 a resolution was taken, which abruptly changed the whole character of the plan. At about 1.30 p.m. Wolfe, together with Monckton, Townshend, and McKcllar (the chief engineer), and Colonel Carleton * and a small escort, left the fleet and proceeded in three boats direct to Goreham's Post (Admiral Holmes and Captain Chadds also appear to have been present), where they arrived at 3 o'clock in the afternoon (Bougainville Letters). Arrived here, Wolfe announced, evidently to the great astonishment of his subordinates, that he intended to attack Quebec by landing at Anse au Foulon, a small bay situated some 1200 yards from the Anse St. Michel, and nearer to the town. This cove was used by the French as a landing-place, a small stream descended through a narrow wooded gorge to the river, and the banks on either side of the gorge were very steep and abrupt and to a great extent covered with trees or undergrowth. The foreshore of the bay is to-day a considerable area of almost level land—probably in 1759 there was less;  on the east, of the Quebec, side of the gorge the land is at present little wooded—probably in those days there was only brushwood upon it. A road ran down to the landing-place partly along the eastern side of the gorge, and this was visible to the observers at Goreham's Post. The tents of the guard and some abattis or defences could also be distinguished.

So far as can be ascertained this dramatic change of intention was first announced when Wolfe called his principal subordinates together at Goreham's Post and pointed out, without apparently any hesitation, the place of attack; it is certain that his decision had been arrived at before he left the fleet. The only indication, so far as I am aware, that this sudden change of plan was based upon personal examination on the part of Wolfe is contained in a remark in Townshend's diary under date September 8, when he says, "General Wolfe went a reconnoitring down the river." This incident is not mentioned by Knox, who followed the movements pretty carefully. An examination of all the circumstances makes it very improbable that Wolfe could have reconnoitred the Anse au Foulon on the 8th. We know that on that date he was busy with preparation and issuing orders for the proposed assault at Pointe-aux-Trembles on the following morning. We know, too, that at this time there was no war-ship between the fleet and Goreham's Point, and with numerous enemy canoes about it would have been hazardous for the General to venture in this direction 5 without an escort. It was a wet, blustery day, and to see anything of Anse au Foulon it would be necessary to row some fourteen miles there and back, the tide would not serve for the re turn journey until past 4 o'clock p.m., and the General could hardly have been back before late afternoon, when, judging from the orders given, he was on board the Sutherland. Finally, there is no mention of the General's absence in the Sutherland log. I conclude that whatever reconnoitring Wolfe did on the 8th he certainly could not have gone so far as Anse au Foulon or anywhere near it.

We are thus driven to suppose that Wolfe's decision to abandon the plan proposed by the brigadiers and substitute one which unquestionably was his and his alone, was based upon some information he had very recently received, or, to put it another way, was based on the confirmation of some information which may have been before him for some time. Townshend's diary, already quoted, gives some indication ; he says, under date September 10, " By some intelligence the General has had he has changed his mind as to the place he intended to land." Clearly Townshend, at all events, attributed the change to "intelligence," and not to the result of any reconnoitring on September 8.

That the new move came as a surprise to the brigadiers is shown by a letter from Murray to Townshend, which will be referred to again, but of which an extract will be useful here:

"I have no copy of the paper I sent by you to General Wolfe concerning his scheme of landing between Pointe-aux-Trembles and St. Augustin, but the public orders are a sufficient proof of his intention to do it, and likewise of the suddenness of the thought of landing when we did " (my italics).

From which we learn that, as might be anticipated, Murray had been called upon to report on the question of landing near Pointe-aux-Trembles, on which, of course, he had a full experience, and that the change of plan was "sudden." Moreover, it is clear that the brigadiers did not share the "intelligence" upon which Wolfe based his intention, for they evidently had little enthusiasm for the project, which indeed to all appearance was a desperate venture.

It is necessary to pause for a moment to consider what happened at the meeting of the general officers at Goreham's Post in the afternoon of September 10. Murray was not there, having been left behind at St. Nicholas to command the troops on shore. All the other chief actors were, however, present. From Rcmigny's reports we know that the party landed at three o'clock, "devant la paste dc la petite Maison," and that all the officers, " Muntercnt jusqu'a la plus haute des Maisons qui sunt sur le grand Chemin." It is not quite clear which house liemigny referred to; possibly the one known as Dalling's House, but the point is not of much importance. It is at least certain that the distance of the observers from the place known as Anse au Foulon was not less than 2900 yards, and it lay, not immediately across the water, but rather to right of the observers. Across the water, facing the observers, lay Anse de St. Michel, distant about 2200 yards. We know that this latter place had for a long time been in Wolfe's mind. What was the secret of his casting off this old love and choosing a new and more distant place, which, to all outward appearance, was no more favourably situated, and which certainly could not be so well reconnoitred from Goreham's Post? The "spy-glasses" of our generals must have been unusually good, for we arc told they observed "an encampment of twelve or thirteen tents and an abattis below it," also a "breastwork"; a "naked rock" was also noted, which was to form the landmark for the boats when approaching. The reconnoitring party took to their boats on the return journey at 6 o'clock (Remigny). The tide being at commencement of flood they would reach the fleet by about 7.30 p.m.

The following day (September 11) orders were issued for the troops on shore to hold themselves in readiness to embark on shipboard early in the morning of September 12. The distribution of the men in the boats to form the landing party was detailed, but apparently in round numbers, and from this we learn that the first landing party would consist of thirty flat-bottom boats, plus five ships boats, containing:

This makes a grand total of 1578 men and N.C.O.s (excluding officers), which agrees very nearly with Knox's statement of the numbers present at the battle of September 13. The evening of this date (September 11) the Seahorse dropped up river from Goreham's Point and joined the fleet above Cap Rouge, in order to take licr place in the forthcoming operations. The Hunter came down to relieve her at the station. These were the only movements of the fleet, and the intention expressed by Wolfe in a letter to Colonel Barton, dated September 11, of sailing "up the river a little higher, as if intending to land on the north shore," was not carried out.

It is a point for remark that Wolfe, having decided on the 10th the place of attack, did not at once proceed to put the plan into action. The troops could equally have re-embarked on the 11th as on the 12th. The tide was equally suitable, rather more so. On the face of it, so far as can be seen, there was no speeial reason for the delay. The impression is given that the commander was waiting for something. The day of the 11th passed in quiet. On the Beauport side, the sailors of the fleet took some buoys out and anchored them towards the north shore, a proceeding intended to give the French the idea that an attack in this quarter was pending. A manoeuvre which succeeded well enough, and the extraordinary tenacity with which Vaudreuil retained a large part of his army east of Quebec, though well aware that the bulk of his enemy had gone west, is one of the strangest facts of the campaign.

On the 12th (September) the troops commenced to re-embark from St. Nicholas, where, Townshend tells us, the salutary fear that Murray had instilled on his previous visit kept the inhabitants from making any attempts against them. In the afternoon (4 p.m.) Murray and Townshend went on board the Sutherland. Probably Monckton was already there. Neither Ivnox nor Townshend mention this in their diaries, but the fact is recorded in the log of the Squirrel. This visit is of some importance with reference to a correspondence which it must be presumed had taken place earlier in the day, or possibly late at night on the previous day, for the dates seem doubtful. The first letter is dated on board the Lowestoft

September 12, and is signed by Monckton, Townshend, and Murray. It runs:

"Sir, as we do not think ourselves sufficiently informed of the several parts which fall to our share in the execution of the descent which you intend to-morrow, we must beg leave to request from you as distinct orders as the nature of the thing will admit of, particularly the place or places we are to attack. This circumstance (perhaps very decisive) we cannot learn from the public orders, neither may it be in the power of the naval officer who leads the troops to instruct us.

"As we should be sorry, no less for the public service than ourselves, to commit any mistakes, we are persuaded you will see the necessity of this application, which can proceed from nothing but a desire to execute your orders with the utmost punctuality."

It is certainly the case that such of the " Public Orders " as have come to light give no detail whatever, such as had been given on previous occasions of the brigading of the troops, or the order in which they were to take post after landing, and apparently the brigadiers, having waited almost to the eleventh hour for these details, felt, and I think with reason, that they should be informed. The incident indicates that this change in the plan was opposed to the sense of the brigadiers, and indeed, Admiral Holmes, who was in close touch with the whole affair, says as much in a despatch written by him a few days later.

Wolfe's reply is addressed to Monckton, and is dated September 12:

"Sir, my reason for desiring the honour of your company with me at Goreham's Post yesterday was to show you, as well as the distance would permit, the situation of the enemy and the place where I meant they should be attacked. As you are charged with that duty, I should be glad to give you all further light and assistance in my power.

"The place is catted Foulon, distant about two to two and a half miles above Quebec, where you remarked an encampment of twelve or thirteen tents and an abattis below it."

At this point let us note that Wolfe's terms of reference to this place, Anse au Foulon, are a little remarkable. It is not a name which had appeared previously in any of the various records of the campaign, and it was clearly not known to the brigadiers. Its distance was about one and a half miles above the town and not two and a half miles, which appears to indicate that Wolfe himself was somewhat new in his acquaintance with it. The letter continued:

"You mentioned to-day that you had perceived a breastwork there, which made me imagine you as well acquainted with the place as the nature of the thing would admit."

This indicates that Wolfe and Monckton had been in consultation on the subject either on the 11th or 12th (September), and adds to the mystery of why the General had not given his general officers a fuller knowledge. Clearly they had been informed that the place of the abattis and breastwork was the point of attack, but apparently the detail of the movement and the name of the place had not been given them. The letter continues.

"I took Captain Shads with me also and desired the admiral's attendance (Holmes), that as the former is charged by Mr. Saunders with conducting the boats he might make himself as much master of his part as possible, and as several of the ships of war are to fall down with the troops, Mr. Holmes will be able to station them properly after he had seen the place. I have desired Mr. Holmes to send the boats down half an hour before day, as you desired, to avoid the disaster of a night attack, and I shah be present myself to give you all the assistance in my power."

This passage makes it clear that Wolfe had discussed the matter with Monckton verbally, and had apparently at first designed an attack at an earlier hour, but had yielded to Monckton's aversion from a night landing. In this Monckton evidently was not at one with Murray, who had already successfully carried out a night attack at Deschambeau, and was in favour of this method. The rest of the letter need not be quoted, but the tone of the whole correspondence is eloquent enough of the astonishment and aversion of the brigadiers to the new plan of operations. It is probable, almost certain, that at the meeting on the Sutherland in the afternoon of the 12th (September), already referred to, Wolfe entered into more details, for the brigadiers fell into their places during the actual landing without confusion. We know now that Monckton was in command of the first landing from the boats, with Murray as his second, and that Townshend commanded the landing of the troops that remained on the ships. The whole story makes it absolutely certain that neither Murray, Townshend, nor Monckton had anything to do with the choice of Anse au Foulon as the place of attack.

In the night of the 12th (September) at 11 p.m.* two deserters came on board the Hunter, then stationed off Sillery Point, bringing information that a French convoy of provisions was expected down the river from Cap Rouge that night. Having in view the strict orders that existed that deserters were to be sent immediately to headquarters without any person putting any questions,! ^ may be taken as certain that these men were sent forward at once to Wolfe, and the several fantastic stories that have grown round this incident may be dismissed. There is no reasonable doubt that Wolfe was in possession of the information brought by the deserters before the troops started for the attack, and furthermore, that he received it, so far at all events as these deserters were concerned, a very short time before the boats started. There is also no doubt that On September 12 Wolfe issued his last orders to his army. He referred to the progress of the commander-in-chief, Amherst, and the division of the enemy, the discontent of the Canadians, and the scarcity of provisions in the enemy's camp ; and concluded with a phrase which should be better known, and which surely deserves as wide a recognition as Nelson's famous signal:

"The officers and men will remember what their country expects from them, and what a determined body of soldiers, inured to war, is capable of doing against five weak French battalions mingled with a disorderly peasantry."

Whatever opinions may be formed concerning Wolfe's strategy, or of the wisdom or unwisdom of the proceedings to which he was now committed, we must all agree to give tribute to his indomitable spirit. To me, after closely following his movements during all the days that followed Murray's return from the upper river up to this day of days which marked the last milestone in the rough road of his life, nothing can better indicate the truly heroic soul which controlled his frail body. Let us remember that during all this period he was barely recovered from a serious illness, and yet faced with ceaseless energy the physical exertion required by the activity which began by the abandonment of Montmorency; and the not less fatiguing mental strain imposed by the important decisions which the commander of an army in the field has to take. Let us remember, too, that the consciousness of failure which he lays bare in his letter to Lord Holderness must have reacted on his sensitive mind, and rendered it more than ever difficult to adopt an independent fine which, rightly or wrongly, he felt was the path of duty. Remembering this, let us revere the memory of a very gallant Englishman.

At 9 p.m. the troops of the first landing embarked in the boats under shelter of the ships. The tide did not serve until 1.30 in the morning, and we can better imagine than describe the long hours of suppressed excitement. The men knew that a big movement was afoot, and the most stolid and phlegmatic among them must have felt a thrill of anticipation. At 2 a.m. the flotilla cast off; the night, we are told, was clear ; the moon was in its last quarter, and would give a fair light over the great river and render visible the precipitous wooded banks which arose on both sides. During the first three miles or so it would have been possible for the boats to keep at a distance from the north shore, which may conceivably have prevented observation from the enemy posts, but after arrival in the region of the Chaudiere the river narrows, and the boats could hardly avoid discovery. We are told that the intention had been to pass as close as possible under the banks of the south shore, but that on the representation of the naval officer in charge it had been found desirable to make the north shore, at least during the last stages of the journey ; besides, it must be remembered that a genuine convoy, which the boats were to pretend to be, would in any case hug the north shore. However this may have been decided, it is certain that the passage of more than thirty heavy boats could not have been accomplished so silently or at such a distance as would prevent detection, and, apart from observers on shore, it was the practice of the French to have patrols on the water, f all of which points to the fact that the passage uf the boats must have been observed and presumably reported. We can only conclude therefore that very careful instructions indeed must have been given to all sentries and patrols to allow the alleged convoy of provisions to pass. It is also noteworthy that on the occasion of a previous genuine convoy it had been arranged that an escort should accompany the flotilla along the shore, and that passwords should be instituted to ensure that friendly-boats should not be fired on (see Vaudreuil to Bougainville, August 23, 1759). Such an escort cannot have been provided on this occasion.

After passing Reveryns Point, opposite the Chaudiere, which would be at a little after 3 o'clock in the morning, we may assume that a light would be in sight from the Hunter stationed off Sillery Point, and no doubt posted there as a mark for the officer in charge to make sure of his position. The log of the Hunter records the passing of the boats with several sloops at 3 a.m., but I think this hour must be only an approximation, for the boats could hardly get so far in one hour from the start, remembering that in the first stage of the journey the tide would not have acquired its maximum velocity of about four and a half knots an hour. The logs are, in fact, not always reliable as to exact hours, and appear to record the nearest hour and occasionally the half-hour, but seldom any smaller division of time.

The order in which the boats proceeded may be gathered from the instructions issued on the 11th. The light infantry, under Colonel Howe, led. According to the author of the Particular Transactions, the foremost boat contained twenty-four volunteers under Captain Delaune, a bold enterprising officcr, and a great favourite of General Wolfe's. This party was to make the first ascent of the bank. The corps was in eight boats, no doubt the boats to each company; probably a small interval separated this leading detachment from the six boats following conveying Bragg's ('28th Foot), and behind them came in order the 43rd, 17th, 58th, and a detachment of Highlanders and American Grenadiers (2nd/60th) bringing up the rear. There is no mention at all of any Rangers accompanying the force, and presumably the whole of them were with Major Scott in the expedition down the river already mentioned.

At about the time that the boats, with the armed sloops following, reached the Hunter, all the war-ships and at least two transports at Cap Rouge (the Sutherland only remained at anchor) weighed and dropped down stream, that is, at 3 to 3.30 a.m. This movement was, of course, plainly visible from the north shore from Cap Rouge to Sillery. We remember that the second body of some 1700 men were on board, and that about an hour separated the two detachments as regards time. The wind, however, was favourable and the ships would rapidly overtake the boats, the two detachments being intended to arrive simultaneously at the rendezvous. The precise happenings when the leading boats passed Sillery Point and arrived near to the point of debarkation arc somewhat obscure; no very clear account is forthcoming. From Sillery Point to the Foulon is approximately 2000 yards, and this would take about twenty minutes to cover. Several accounts tell us that the leading boats went past the appointed landing-placc. What seems most probable is that the first two boats containing Delaune's company, with Colonel Howe, passed the Foulon and landed a little distance below; but it is not possible to believe that they could have been carried so far as Anse des Meres (as has been stated) which is some 2000 yards further on, and would take them twenty minutes to cover, and at least that length off time to return on land after they had ascended the cliffs there.6 The other three companies of light infantry, with Captains McDonald, Eraser, and, I suppose, Cardin (though he is not mentioned), appear to have landed at the proper place. It was this force which ascended at De Vergor's post, and after a slight scuffle took possession of it. Colonel Howe and Delaune, with the first body, having ascended, made their way to the left, and joined the rest, having run some risk of being mistaken for the enemy as they made their way along the bank towards the post. The advanced party having taken possession, the remaining troops commenced and continued their landing.

The extent to which the landing was interfered with is not very accurately known. Knox, whose statements can generally be relied on when his information was first hand, was not present at the first landing; he refers only to sentries posted on the summit of the cliffs. The description of Major Moncrief, confirmed by other sources, indicates that the first party got up before any firing commenced, and I think it is almost certain that De Vergor's post offered no resistance until the light infantry was among them. There was then some firing—De Vergor is said to have been wounded (in the heel!) and taken prisoner. That there were sentries on the beach is probable. The author of Particular Transactions, who was probably present, says that two sentries were passed without challenge, and the third was apparently easily satisfied. The story, however, is not reliable, though often repeated, for we are told that when the sentry inquired what regiment was in the boats, he was told " De la Heine," though, as a matter of fact, this corps was not with Bougainville or in the neighbourhood of Quebec at all. If there is any truth in the story, the words "De la Reine" may have been the password already referred to.

The logs of several of the ships stationed off Point Levis record that the sound of firing of cannon and small arms was heard. On the Stirling Castle the entry was at 4.30 a.m., on the Captain and the Centurion the hour was 4 a.m. Piecing the various narratives together, it seems no firing occurrcd until after the first landing of the light infantry and their attack on the post, and that then the battery at Samos, situated about 300 yards higher up the river, opened fire on the boats lying below and waiting orders to land. This was no doubt the cannon heard by the fleet, and the hour would be near 4.30 a.m. It is worthy of notice that the ships which recorded this firing were at anchor over five miles away from the Samos battery, and Cap Rouge was approximately the same distance away in the opposite direction."

I have thus far followed in detail the events up to the point of landing at the Anse au Foulon, partly because these have not, I believe, hitherto been studied so closely, but chiefly because it is necessary that an event of such importance in the career of James Murray should be carefully examined. In the next chapter I shall endeavour to arrive at the reasons which led the General >n command to take this step, and to give grounds for the opinion that it was fraught with serious consequences which would in all probability have been avoided had the views of the brigadiers, embodied in their "advice," been adopted. From this point onwards to the capture of the town I shall enter less into detail.

Dr. Doughty, The Siege of Quebec, and the careful research of Colonel William Wood in his book, The Fight for Canada. give all the information that is available on the events of the five days up to the capitulation, and it is unnecessary to repeat it, except in some phases of the affair.

While the army was assembling on the slopes above the landing place the nature of the terrain imposed on Wolfe the necessity of advancing to higher and more open ground. It may be inferred from Knox's statement that the first troops to move off were the Louisburg Grenadiers,7 28th. 43rd, and 47th Regiments. The distanee traversed was, to the Ste. Foy road, nearly a mile, and then about half a mile along this road toward Quebec. Knox says that about 6 o'clock the first detachment of the enemy was seen on the heights, and that then Wolfe wheeled to the right and commenced to form his line of battle. I should judge the time would be rather later, for it would take fully forty-five minutes to cover the distance in strange country and imperfect light. Knox does not refer to the advanced party which pushed forward another half-mile along the road and occupied the house or mill known as Borgias, which was situated close to the main road and near a junction with a road leading to the suburb of St. Roch. The troops at this point would be in full view of the General Hospital situated in the plain below on the banks of the St. Charles River, and we know from other sources that information was sent from the hospital between 6 and 7 o'clock of the approach of the English. The information, however, cannot have been the first to be received in the French camp, and the messenger must have met the French advanced detachments already filing up towards the heights.

According to Knox the 15th and 35t.h Regiments came up with the advanced guard after an interval, and they were followed by the 48th, 58th, the two battalions of the 60th, and the 78th. Except the 58th these troops formed the second landing, which no doubt accounts for the delay, and the 58th had been detached to silence the Samos battery immediately after the first landing.

The remarkable feature of this operation is the confidence which Wolfe displayed regarding his rear. For a time, at all events, his force was divided and his communications with the shore scarcely protected, while he himself penetrated with a comparatively weak detachment toward an enemy numerically superior and in possession of a sufficient artillery, and by all the rules of war he would also have to reckon with a force of 2000 men under Bougainville operating on his flank and threatening his rear. What would have happened if De Levis had commanded above Quebec instead of Bougainville is a question the answer to which can scarcely be in doubt.

On the Quebec side extraordinary confusion reigned, and all the evil due to ill-defined responsibility on the part of the commanders. I do not propose to venture an opinion on the proportion of blame to be borne by Vaudreuil or Montcalm. The former, by his writings, lays himself open to the greater suspicion ; but it may be that Montcalm's attitude brought about some of the troubles which might ha ve been avoided by a greater display of tact. One thing seems clear, that some evil genius was at work which did not hesitate to play on the weaknesses of both and bring them into conflict for personal ends. The journals and diaries of the events in Quebec on September 12 and 13 are too obviously coloured by the partisanship of the writers to be entirely reliable. De Levis' Journal, which as a rule gives a moderate and impartial view, is in this case of little use for reference, for he was not present, and what he has written is almost word for word, with some minor amplifications, similar to the account of the Chevalier de la Pause, who, since he also was not present, must obviously have received it from a third person not named.

The Chevalier Johnston, as friend and also aide-decamp of Montcalm, has left an account of personal contact with Montcalm which certainly carries the impress of truth on the writer's part, so far at least as he could be acquainted with the facts, but no doubt Johnston was at no pains to view the events in any light unfavourable to his friend and commander. At all events, he was certainly an eye-witness, as was also the writer of the last part of Montcalm's Journal, and both accounts agree in many details. Johnston tells us that no intimation of any attack above Quebec was conveyed to Montcalm, and that between 6 and 7 in the morning Montcalm, accompanied by Johnston, set out for Vaudreuil's headquarters, and learnt, to their surprise, that the English army was on the Heights of Abraham. Johnston was at once sent to order Poularies (Colonel of the Royal Roussillon Regiment) to keep 200 men at the Beauport ravine and send all the rest of the left of the army to the Heights of Abraham. What followed is certainly very circumstantial. Johnston found Brig.-General de Sennezergue, and M. de Lotbiniere, an aide-de-camp of Vaudreuil, with Poularies, who showed Johnston a written order signed Montreuil, that not a man was to stir from the left.8 Johnston declared on his honour that his message was word for word Montcalm's order, and entreated them to have no regard for the orders signed " Montreuil," " as the want of 2000 men which formed the left must be of great consequencc." There are other details, but Johnston left De Sennezergue irresolute and doubtful how to act, and spurred to rejoin Montcalm on the heights. This would be near 8 o'clock a.m.

According to Johnston, the choice of the battle-ground was not Montcalm's. He says that the picquets and part of the troops were already marched up to the heights before Montcalm arrived or even knew of the landing, and all the right of the army was marching in the same direction when he came on the scene. We know from other sources that some troops had arrived not much after 6 o'clock, which makes it pretty certain that some part of the force had taken post before Montcalm was on the scene. The same authority gives Montcalm's view of the proper course, viz. to march by Lorette to Ste. Foy, and having joined hands with Bougainville to fall upon the English army. We are also told that De Ramezay, the governor of the town, refused to send artillery when demanded by Montcalm.

The other eye-witnesses' account, albeit likewise not ..mocent of bias, tells us that a little before daybreak (that would be about 4.30 a.m.) shots were heard above Quebec. A signal was made from the town, " qu'il avoit passe quel qu'ehose." This seems to confirm in some degree' the statement made in the footnote to p. 155, and fixed the time at which the alarm was first given, viz. about 5 o'clock a.m., and incidentally confirms, to some extent, Johnston's statement that no intimation was given to Montcalm. At daylight all appeared quiet, says the narrative, when a fugitive from the post at Foulon gave the alarm. But even this does not appear to have greatly disconcerted the writer, whose statement, however, is by no means clear. Some time certainly elapsed before he (the writer) thought it necessary to proceed to the heights, where he found Montcalm ranging the troops, as they arrived, in battle order. This was between 7 and 8 o'clock. The writer refers to seeing Wolfe's army stretching from the Ste. Foy road towards the river, and mentions his (Wolfe's) holding the fortified advanced post (Borgias House), which, however, was shortly afterwards set on fire. He relates a short conversation with Montcalm, who said. "We cannot avoid an action. The enemy is entrenching —he has already two field pieces. If we give him time to establish himself we shall never be able to attack with our small numbers." And the Marquis added, " Aver, une espece de saisissement, Est il possible que Bougainville n'entends pas cela?"* This account also indicates that Montreuil was responsible for the first dispositions of the troops before the arrival of Montcalm, and this is confirmed by the author of the statement copied by De Levis and De la Pause, already referred to, " Le Major-General (.Montreuil) en fut instruit le premier par un fuyard . . II etoit non loin du pont pres duquel etoit range le regiment de Guienne, au quel il donna I'ordre a Marcher," etc. Assuming for the moment that this " fuyard " conveyed the first intimation, it can be safely deduced that it would take approximately an hour from the time of the first attack on Vergor's post before he could find and report to Montreuil, that is, about 5.15 a.m.

It is noteworthy that none of these accounts indicates the presence of Vaudreuil, who seems to have remained in rear; but we have two letters, the one dated September 13 at 4.30 p.m., written to De Levis, in which he describes his action:

"M. Le Marquis de Montcalm est arrive avec le premier detachment (this is almost certainly untrue). Je faisoisl'arriere —garde et faisois hater le pas aux troupes de Milice qui etoient sur ma route . . . J'avois fait prevenir M. de Bougainville, qui dans Vinstant s'est mis en marche du Cap Rouge avec les cinq compagnies de Grenadiers, deux pieces de canon, la cavalerie et ce qu'il avoit de meilleurs . . . il ne nous fallait qu'attendre le moment de I'arrive de M. de Bougainville, parceque, tandis que nous Vaitaquerions avec toutes nos forces, il serroit pris par les derriers, mais la malheur nous en a voulu, au point, que Va ffaire s'est engagee avec trop de vivacite.''

All this is hardly a frank statement. Bougainville did not appear on the scene until after 11 o'clock. In the other letter, written on November 9 to the Minister Berryer or the Marquis de Belleisle, is even less creditable :

Toute la campagne, Monseigneur, a ete caracterisee par des traits d'insubordination (on the part of Montcalm !) parfaite jusqu'au 13 Septr. ou il voulut absolument donner des preuves d'une autorite independante, sans s'enquieter s'il perdroit ou sauveroit la eolonie. Je lui ecrivais de ne point prematurer Vaffaire je me rendis avec mes aides-de-camp pour prendre commandement et attendre la reunion de nos forces j'eus la douleur de voir notre defaite au moment que je me promettais de battre Vennemi."

The letter which Vaudreuil claims in this last quoted document to have sent was said to have been delivered by a mounted orderly after the army was assembled on the Heights. All the circumstances seem to indicate that the letter was a concoction of a subsequent date intended to throw the blame of the defeat on Montcalm. The facts appear to be that Vaudreuil, or at all events, Montreuil, who was probably with him, heard of the attack some time near 5 o'clock, and without acquainting Montcalm set about bringing up the troops—in the first place the Guienne Regiment from the bridge-head, and the militia holding the right of the French line on the Canardiere. It is only on t his assumption that the Guyenne Regiment could have arrived on the scene by shortly after 6 o'clock, for they had fully one and a half miles to march. So that when Montcalm was made aware of the attack he found the disposition of the troops already decided. This is a point which it is important to emphasise, because, if the deductions are correct, they show that Montcalm was in no way responsible for giving battle in a disadvantageous position with a portion only of his force.

As regards the numbers available to oppose the English army, no very reliable record exists. We can give an estimate of the maximum number that could have been present, but it is very difficult to say to what extent this maximum may have been reduced. Thus, from the original 12,000 men probably available, which would leave a maximum of about 5400 men for assembly on the plain, of which perhaps 2000 at the outside were regulars. The Journal Tenu a I'Armee gives the number at 4500, but these and all French accounts are likely to be on the low side.

It was at about 7.30 a.m. that Wolfe completed the deployment of his troops. Monckton's brigade occupied the right, Murray's the left, Townshend's the left rear. By 8.30 a.m. the preliminary French movements were completed, and Montcalm had assembled his available force on or close behind the ridge known as Buttes-a-Neveu,9 and now decided on advancing towards the enemy. In doing so it is interesting to note he took precisely the same action which Murray took in the following spring, as we shall see; that is, he descended the gently sloping terrain towards the plain. There was, however, this difference, that the distance to be traversed was much less in the present ease, and contact between the two Forees occurred after an advance of some 700 yards. It appears from various accounts that Montcalm's troops executed the first part of the advance in three columns, but after covering some 300 to 400 yards he formed in line, and the English at the same time advanced a short distance, bringing their left forward to meet the French line more squarely. The detail of the actual fight need not detain us long; indeed, it only lasted a few minutes.

The French line advanced rapidly over the remaining interval of some 400 yards, and commenced a desultory fire at about 130 yards, where it was probably almost ineffective, continuing to advance up to 40 yards, the English troops reserving their fire until at close range they poured in deadly and effective volleys. The French troops gave way at once and fled precipitately ; but it must be said, for the credit of the troops of Old France, which had been victors in many actions during the war, that they were in this instance co-mingled with ill-disciplined militia, quite unaccustomed to steady movements or fighting in the open. They were, besides, hurriedly drawn together, and for rnany months had been subject to scarcity of food and munitions. Murray's brigade of the 47th, 58th, and 78th, forming the left of the line, pursued vigorously, with a view of cutting off the retreating enemy from the bridge of boats. It was at this juncture that General Townshend took command, both Wolfe and Monckton being out of action. Townshend's position during the battle had been one of importance in protecting the left flank from attack of Indians and Canadians, who sought, under cover of the brushwood, to steal round the flank; but he now found the line in confusion, owing to the pursuit, and prudently, as I think, determined to re-order his units, so that the event of Bougainville's approach could be met with closed ranks. Exactly why it was apparently anticipated and calculated that Bougainville would not arrive on the scene until after 11 o'clock there is nothing on the surface to show; but that officer was, or was supposed to be, no more than five and a half miles away, and one would imagine, unless some exceedingly good reason to the contrary existed, that he would be calculated as on the move from at least the moment of the first firing at Samos, which would have brought him on the scene certainly before 8 o'clock. Yet at that hour, and apparently until a good deal later, there was no rear guard 10 at the Anse au Foulon, other than sailors and marines engaged in landing guns and stores. De Bougainville tells us that he knew nothing until 9 o'clock —an inexplicable statement that I will refer to agam— but in any case it shows that he was able to cover the distance in from two to two and a half hours. Why, then, was such confidence shown that he would not put in an appearance until well towards 11 o'clock, when Townshend prepared to meet him?

I will pause here for a moment to examine the actual results of the battle which has just been briefly described. We must remember that the plateau, or at least the elevated ground on one end of which stood the city of Quebec, formed, in a sense, an island, surrounded on the south side by the St. Lawrence, and on the others by the valleys of the Cap Rouge River and the St. Charles—at its broadest, perhaps two and a quarter miles in width, narrowing at the eastern end to a mile or thereabouts—on all sides approached by more or less precipitous banks. On the north side, in the broad flat valley land of the St. Charles, good roads on both sides of the river communicated with the French encampments on the Beauport side of Quebec and led westward via Old Lorette to Pointe-aux-Trembles, Three Rivers, and ultimately Montreal. We have seen that the whole force at Wolfe's disposal was only sufficient to cover a part of the elevated land at the narrow end of the Quebec " island." There was nothing, and could be nothing, which would enter into any prudent calculation, to prevent the French army from taking either the course of retiring by the St. Charles valley roads— as was, in fact, intended by Montcalm (p. 159)—well away from possible attack of so small a force as Wolfe had, or of retreating by this route (as actually happened) in the event of defeat, and either of these alternatives was undoubtedly facilitated by the presence of a strong undefeated force, such as that of De Bougainville, which would prevent the invaders from acting at any considerable distance from their base.

It is this consideration which leads me to conclude that strategically it was a false move to attack the elevated " island " of Quebec at all, if, as seems reasonably certain, the plan proposed by the brigadiers had good chances of success, for that plan cut the retreat by the only possible route, and, moreover, contained all the opposing forces, not only preventing their access to their depots of supply, but also rendering any further assistance, on their part, in the defence of the colony impossible. In his History of the British Army, Fortescue has put the case in a sentence : " The consequence was that the work was but half done, and as shall soon be seen only narrowly escaped undoing." It is because the work was only half done that in this story it becomes of particular importance to deal with the causes which influenced the decision, for on James Murray fell the onus of meeting conditions and repelling attacks which this error in strategy created or rendered possible.

For the moment, however, the victory was complete, much more complete than the victors knew or could have imagined. Bougainville, on arrival in the neighbourhood of Ste. Foy, and learning of the disaster which had overtaken the French arms, retired at once, and, on the opposite side of the St. Charles River, where the fugitives had gathered in a helpless mob, there can be small doubt that an attack would have resulted in a complete destruction of the French military strength east of Quebec.* Townshend, in his new position of commander of the British forces, has been blamed unfairly, I believe, for not showing greater enterprise ; but we must consider at least three things: the first, that his troops were probably physically incapable of further exertion, for they had not only a night in which little or no rest had been possible, but a day of tremendous activity, and, indeed, one might add. a considerable amount of activity and want of rest for several days previously ; the second, that it was impossible to know the extraordinary state of demoralisation of the enemy: the third, that Bougainville's fresh troops still hovered, to an unknown extent, on their rear. To this we may add that the garrison of the town and its capability for offence was an unknown quantity. In these circumstances I do not think any impartial reader will disagree with the opinion that he was wise to content himself with holding what had been won.

To Murray the day had been a glorious one, and in the flush of victory he probably had little thought of the morrow. The brigade he led of the 47th, 58th, and 78th had taken the most active and prominent part in the victory, and perhaps it was a source of some particular satisfaction to their General when the Highlanders, drawing their broadswords, repeated the famous rush that won the game at Prestonpans and Falkirk, in which actions it is quite possible some of them may have taken part. The 47th, too, greatly distinguished itself, and it is said t might have entered the town on the heels of the fugitives, had they not been recalled.

Of the proceedings on the French side after the battle little need be said. They ended in a disgraceful, disorderly flight along the St. Charles valley roads the same night.

I must again emphasise how decisively important the American Rangers, whom Wolfe had detached, would have been, could they have been let Joose on the retreating French army at this juncture.

The evidence seems to show that Vaudreuil was greatly influenced by his evil genius, Bigot, aided, and perhaps even exceeded, by Cadet. Everything was abandoned in the camp, including the artillery. A wild panic had seized the men. With the exception of the Royal Rous-sillon Regiment, which, under its colonel, Poularies, appears to have maintained some discipline, not thirty men were together of any regiment—the whole resolved itself into a mob of fugitives, running as hard as they could. The Chevalier Johnston, who describes the retreat in language of indignation, adds: "In fact it would appear by this strange conduct that a class of men there, from interested views, were furiously bent on giving up the colony to the English as soon as they could have a plausible pretext to colour their designs."

Vaudreuil did at least one wise thing. He sent an express to De Levis requesting his immediate presence, and on the 17th the remnants of the army were reassembled at Jacques Cartier, and some semblance of discipline was at once imparted by this energetic commander. Action was taken to direct De Ramezay, the Governor of Quebec, to hold out until assistance came ; but this was too late, for without ever a shot being fired against the town De Ramezay capitulated on the 18th. For this action Vaudreuil attempted to inculpate his subordinate, but the latter was able to prove that his orders were from Vaudreuil himself, and that he had been left by the ignominious flight of his superior without means of sustaining an assault or even of withstanding a siege of short duration.

There are many incidents connected with the operations ending with the capitulation of Quebec that appear mysterious, and of these none is more so than the extraordinary number of casualties among the leaders. On the English side Townshend and Murray were the only two of the principal staff officers who escaped. Wolfe died gloriously, Monckton, Carleton, Barre, were all wounded. Montcalm, and both his brigadiers, De Sennezergue and St. Ours, were killed. One can almost suppose that the same evil genius, which rumour held was rushing the colony to ruin, had taken precautions that the men who knew too much should not survive. However this may he, it is singular that from sources widely different there emanated the idea that both Wolfe and Montcalm met their deaths from circumstances not connected with legitimate warfare.

In the next chapter I propose to deal with what appears to be the mystery of Wolfe's landing at the Anse au Foulon, and at the same time to clear up, as far as possible, the point that has been much in dispute, viz. to whom the genesis of this plan was due. As regards the first, I think there is little doubt that secret information was conveyed to the Commander-in-Chief, leading him suddenly to abandon the plans put before him by the brigadiers; as regards the second, it appears to me that many writers have confused the recommendation of the brigadiers to act above the town, that is, at a point above Cap Rouge, with Wolfe's decision to act above the town, but at a point close to it. The latter plan, as I have said, was Wolfe's alone. The former, had it been carried out, would certainly have been one for which the credit could not be given to Wolfe.

That Wolfe was a gallant leader and an able organiser is so obvious that it is almost impertinent to state the fact, but one salient point forces itself on our attention, when studying the operations of 1759, and that is that to j* fight'' the enemy, to " get at " them when and where he could was the limit of his strategical range of thought. The wider movements by which he could place his opponent at a disadvantage and force him to the attack scarcely seem to have occurred to him.

The views of his subordinate generals, on the other hand, at all events in the later stages of the campaign, were certainly based on a truer military estimate of the situation. Whether this estimate was due to one of them more than another it is difficult to say, without more complete evidence than is at present available. The only thing that can be said with any certainty is that the change of strategy made itself apparent from the moment of Murray's return from his reconnaissance, and that his reports expressed his belief in the possibility of effecting a landing at the true strategic point. Moreover, the plan of operations submitted to the commander was in his handwriting, though this in itself is no proof that it was his idea. One other point may be mentioned, though it is an anticipation of subsequent events, and that is that in his movements of the following year, from Quebec to Montreal, Murray showed a real strategic grasp of the situation, declining to turn aside from his main objective by any temptation, or to fritter away his strength on minor actions which in themselves could not be decisive.


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