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General Henry Clinton on the Battle of Paulus Hook

From Diary of the American Revolution, Vol II. Compiled by Frank Moore and published in 1859.

General Sir Henry Clinton, in a letter to Lord George Germaine, dated New York, August 21, 1779, says of this action: “On the 19th instant, the garrison of Powle’s Hook being reinforced, Lieutenant-Colonel Buskirk was detached with part of the troops to cut off some small parties who interrupted the supplier of provision; a considerable body of the rebels availed themselves of that opportunity to attempt the post. At three in the morning they advanced to the gate of the works, and being mistaken by a negligent guard for Lieutenant-Colonel Buskirk’s corps returning, entered without opposition. I fear they found the garrison so scandalously absorbed, in consequence of their security, that they made themselves masters of a block-house and two redoubts with scarcely any difficulty. The alarm being now spread, Major Sutherland, the commandant, threw himself, with forty Hessians, into a redoubt, by an incessant fire from which he forced the enemy to quit the post without either damaging any of the cannon or setting fire to the barracks. In short, their retreat was as disgraceful as their attempt was well-conducted. They carried off with them near forty invalids, prisoners. A detachment being sent over from New York, Major Sutherland pursued the enemy, and coming up with their rear made a captain and some privates prisoners. Lieutenant-Colonel Buskirk, on his return, had a small skirmish with the rebels, and took four prisoners without any loss on his part.”— Upcott, v. 327.

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