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received, an insurrection would shortly be made. I heard at the same time from capt. Thompson, that seventeen of the enemy's vessels had just arrived at Colonia; and, as it was reported that force was still to be increased from Monte Video, 1 sent orders for the Diomede. to be brought to Knsenada, and for capt. King, of the Diadem, to come up with the remaining few marines, the two companies of Blues, and as many other men as could in any degree be spared from the ships, tor the purpose of arming some vessels to attack the enemy at Colonia, as it was impossible to prevent his crossing from the north shore whenever the wind was fair.
"On tho 1st of August, in the afternoon, the Leda anchored off Buenos Ayres, about twelve miles distant: and on my landing on the 2d, which I did as soon as the weather would admit of a boat getting on shore, I found the general had just made a very successful attack on about 1500 Spaniards under Pueridon, five leagues from the town, with 500 men; in which he took ail the enemy's cannon, (I think nine, pieces,) and several pri. soners.—On the 3d I attempted to return to the Leda, in the Encounter, which captain Jloneyman brought within a few miles of the shore for this purpose, as it blew very strong; but the wind freshened so considerably from the eastward, that we could not get to windward. On the 4th, in the morning, it was \ery thick weather, and the gale increased so much, that it was impossible to weigh.—About nonn, captain King arrived in a ga. livat with 150 men from the Diadem, for the purpose of arming the few small vessels we had collected
in the harbour, but he was not able to get there till the following day. On the 5th, in the morning, it moderated, and I reached the Leda; whon I received a report from captain Thompson, that in the gale of the preceding day the enemy crossed from Colonia totally unobserved hy any of our ships, except the schooner under the command of lieute. nant Herrick; but the easterly wind had thrown so much water in the river, that the enemy were enabled to cross over anv part of the Patinas bank without the necessity of making a greater detour by going higher up the river.—On the 6th and 7th it blew a hurricane; the Leda was lying in four fathoms, with two anchors down, and her yards and topmasts struck. —On the 8th I heard from captain King, that five of our gun.boats had foundered at their anchors; that the Walker had lost her rudder, and that the launches and large cutters of (he Diadem and Leda were lost.—The torrents of rain that fell during the 6th, 7th, and 8th, had rendered the roads totally impracticable for any thing but cavalry: and consequently general Beresford was most seriously disappointed in his determination to attack the enemy at a distance from the town; in which, had it taken place, I entertained no doubt that his army would have added another trait of its invincible spirit under his dispositions.—The enemy, however, by his inexhaustible supply of horses, suffered little inconvenience from the state of the roads, and he was therefore enabled to approach the town by several directions, without giving the British arm)' any opportunity to attack him.—On the 1 Oth, in the evening, the Castle was summoned ; and on (he following day I landed, while oar remaining vessels were firing on the Spanish posts, and I learnt, that, exclusive of the Spanish army, which was divided into many columns, occupying the various'avenues of the town, the inhabitants were all armed, and sheltered on the tops of the houses and churches, with a design of carrying on a war of ambush.—Under these circumstances, and the manifest disposition of the enemy to prevent an engagement, it was determined to embark the wounded that night, and cross the Rio Chello, for the purpose of moving towards Enscnada; but this meat are was in a great degree frustrated by the weather, which became very violent during the night, and consequently retarded the progress of embarkation, though the enemy added a considerable number of men to the fioutcs and churches near the Castle, and advanced by all the streets not under the influence of its fire; in short, sir, his object was to aToid by every means a general action, and to place his men in such i situation that they could fire at our troops while they remained in perfect security themselves. On •ho 12th, at day-light, I understand a smart fire began from the enemy's advanced posts, but was soon returned with great effect from our artillery, which was planted toward the principal streets leading to the great square; for a short time the enemy, by his immense numbers, shewed a greater degree of firmness than on any other occasion, and pushed forward with three pieces of artillery, which colonel Pack, of the 71st, soon charged and took from him. During this time, how
ever, reinforcements crowded the tops of all the houses commanding the great square from the backstreets, and our troops were soon considerably annoyed by people they could not get at. The enemy com. manded the Castle in the same way, with the additional advantage of a gun on the top of one of the churches, which I consider an indelible stigma against the character of the bishop, not only from his situation, but the professions he made. —I can easily conceive how the feelings of general Beresford must, at this moment, have been on the rack. Disappointed in his last efforts to induce the enemy to a gene, ral engagement in the great square, his gallant little army falling fast byshots fron invisible persons, and the only alternative which could present itself to save the useless effusion of so much valuable blood, was a flag of truce, which was hoisted at the Castle about one o'clock. In an instant there were near 10,000 men in the great square, pressing forward in the most outrageous manner to get into the fort, and even firing at our men on the ramparts; so much so, that it was with extreme difficulty the British troops'were prevented revenging this insult; indeed the general was obliged to tell the Spanish officers, if their men did not retire in the course of one minute, he must, as the only measure of safety, haul down the flag of truce, and recommence hostilities: this firmness had the desired effect, and lie then sent his conditions to the Spanish general, and they were instantly acceded to."
From the subsequent part of this letter, it appears that our loss on the above occasion amounts to 2 officers, 2 Serjeants, 1 drummer,
- i } and
and 43 rank and file, killed; and 6 officers, 7 serjeants, 92 rank and tile, wounded; and 9 missing; ma. king a total of Ui5; and scarce any of those misfortunes were occasion. ed except from the inhabitants, on the tops of the houses and the churches.—" The enemy confesses to have lost about 700 killed and wounded, in the short conflict in the streets; and if it had not been for the inhabitants, I have little doubt, (says sir If.) (hat the Spanish troops would have been completely defeated, although seven times the number of the British forces.—Nothing is more difficult than to give their lordships an idea of the number of men in arms; but from the best accounts we can obtain, it is thought Pucridon, and the other principal people engaged in this plot, had collected from 8 to 10,C00 men in the country; that Linicrs may have brought over from 800 to 1000; and the town furnished, fhoug'; armed in various ways, about 10,000, under the secret arrangement of the magistrates.", —Lieutenants Groves, Herrick, and Swaile, of the navy, receive great praise from sir. II. for their conduct in bringing out several vessels from the harbour.
The articles of capitulation agreed that the British troops should march out with the honours of war, and be embarked for England as prisoners; and that the Spanish troops made prisoners by us on t!io capture of the place, should be exchanged for the British officers takon at the recapture. This capitulation, after being signed, was bro. ken by the Spaniards, who marched our troops up the country.
The officers killed, were capf. Jvenneft, of the R. engineers, and
Heut. W.Mitchell, of the 7lst regiment.—Officers wounded, captain Mackenzie, R. M. lieut. Sampson, St. Helena regiment; c»|:t. Ogilvio, R. artillery; lieut. M'IX>nald, ditto; lieut. col. Pack, lirut. Murray, ensigns Connel and Lucas, (since dead,) all of the 7>st regiment.
Statement of property captured at Buenos Ay res, but not removed, and which was recaptured on the 12th of August.
Dollars. Goods of the Philippine
Company . . lOO.SOO
Debts due totliito . 1,011,337 4000 Arab. B. Tobacco,
at 6 di.llais, sold for U 24,000
20O0ditio Parly ditto • 12,0X0 50,000 Reams Paper (2
dollars) . 100,000
Plaving Cuds 50,000
.5000 (Quintals of Quid
silver (40 dollars) . 200,000 40,0001'os. Spanish Snuff
(2 dollar^ . . 80,000
20,0001b-. Havannaliditto .
(2 dollars) . . 40,000
37.500lbs. Bark.U J dol'ars) 56,250
Vessels and Floating Property 1,500.000
Note—No valuation is made, m this statement, of the timber, treasure in treasury, powder in the magazine, and of army and ord. nance stores.
The second letter, from sir H. Popham, dated on-board the Diadem, relates merely to the capture of the town and harbour of Malde. nadu, as described by col. Backhouse.—A third letter, dated Oct. 31, states the capture of the island of Goretti, by sir IF. Popham.—Goretfi is a very strong position, defended by 20 twenty.four pounders, in four batteries, so placed ai to command the roadstead, the eastern passage between it and the peninsula, and the only two practical beaches for landing.
The Gazette of Feb. 14. contains an order of the commander-inchief, that, in addition to the permission recently granted to the 76th regiment of foot, for placing the word Hindoostan in their colours and appointor nts, the regiment shall be allowed to place the Ele. phaiit in their colours and on their appointments, inscribing the word "Hindoovian'' around it; as a distinguished testimony of their pood co duct and exemplary valour during their service in India.
Capture of Curacoa.
Admiralty-office, Feb. 21. Captain Lydiard, of his niaje'/i's skip the Anson, arrived here this morning, with dispatches from nce-admiral Dacres, commander. in-chitf of his majesty's ships and vessels «t Jamaica, to William Marsdcn, c.v9. ofichich the follow, ing are copies: Shark, Port Royal, Jan. 1, 1S07.
Sir; I have much satisfaction in congratulating my lords cominisioners of the admiralty on the capture of the island of Curacoa, on Newyear's day, in the morning, by the lour frigates named in the margin *, under the orders of captain Brisbane, of the Arethusa: a copy of whose letter I inclose for their lordships' information.
Whilst I contemplate the immense strength of the harbour of Amsterdam, and the superior force contained in its different batteries opposed to the entrance of the frigates, 1 know not how sufliciently
* Arethusa, Latona, A
to admire the decision of captain Brisbane, in attempting the har. • bour, and the determined bravery and conduct displayed by himself, the other three captains, and all the officers and men under his command; and is another strong in. stance of the cool and determined bravery of British seamen.
Captain Brisbane being, from his situation, obliged to act as governor, I have, as an acknowledge, ment and high approbation of his conduct, continued him in that situation until his majesty's pleasure shall be known; and request, in the strongest manner, that their lordships nil! be pleased to recom. mend him for that appointment.
Captain Lydiard (who will have the honour of delivering this, and who fully partook of the conquest, and has before distinguished himself off the Havannah,.) I beg to refer their lordships to for any information. 1 shall put an acting captain in the Anson until his return, or I receive directions thereon.
I am, &c.
(Signed) J. R. Dacres.
His Majesty's ship Arethusa, Sir, Curacoa, Jan. 1, 1807.
It is with the most "lively and heartfelt satisfaction I have the honour to irfforrti you, that his majesty's squadron under my command, has this day opened the Ncwyear with what I humbly flatter myself will be deemed an enter, prise of considerable consequence to my country.
I proceeded in the execution of your orders the 29th of November, with every possible avidity; but
the nson,and Fisgard.
the adverse wind and current prevented me from reaching this island before the 1st instant. In my way up, I met captain Bolton, of the Fisgard, going to Jamaica; 1 took him under my orders, according to your directions, and proceeded with the squadron og this port, having previously resolved on that system of attack which British sea. men are so capable of executing. My arrangements having been pie. viously made known to the respective captains, I was satisfied nothing further remained for me than to put it in execution. My line of battle consisted of the Arethusa, Latona, Anson, and Fisgard; and very soon after the break of day, I made all possible sail with the ships in close order of battle, passing the whole extensive line of sea.batteries, and anchored the squadron in a stile far surpassing my expec. tations. Being still desirous of having the. effusion of human blood spared, I wrote the inclosed, No. I, on the capstan of his majesty's ship Arethusa, during the action ; whic was not regarded, cs they did their utmost to destroy us. Words can. not express the ability of the squadron. The harbour was defended by regular fortifications, of two tier of guns, Fort Amsterdam alone consisting of sixty-six pieces of cannon; the entrance only fifty yards wide, athwart which was the Dutch frigate Hatslar, of 36 guns; and SuriRam, of 22, with two large schooners of war, one commanded by a Dutch commander; a chain of forts was on Miselburg commanding height; and that almost impregnable fortress, Fort Rcpubliquc, within the distance of grape-shot, enfilading the whole harbour.
At a quarter past six o'clock, we
entered the port; a severe and destructive cannonade ensued; the frigate, sloop, and schooners, were carried by boarding; the lower forts, the citadel and town of Amsterdam, by storm; all of which, by seven o'clock, were in our possession. For humanity-sake, I granted the annexed capitulation; and, at ten o'clock, the British flag was hoisted in Fort Repnblique:— the whole island is in our quiet possession. The strength, commerce, and value, I understand, is immense. It is now become a pleasing part of my duty, although impossible to do justice to the merits, gallantry, and determination of captains Wood, Lydiard, and Bolton, who so nobly headed their respective ships' companies to the storm; and the same gallantry and determination are ditto the officers, seamen, and marines, for following up so glono .• an example. Enclosed is a list of the killed and wounded in his majesty's squadron. I have not yet been able to ascertain that of the enemy, except those in the ship«. The Dutch commodore was killed early in the action, and the captain of the Surinam severely wounded. I have appointed, by proclamation, Wednesday next, the 7th instant, for the inhabitants (which amount to thirty thousand), to take the oath of allegiance to our most gracious sovereign: those that do not choose, will be instantly embarked as prisoners of war. For any farther particulars, I must beg to refer you to that gallant officer, captain Lydiard.
I have the honour to be, kc. (Signed) Charles Brisbane. To James Richard Dacrest «y. Vice-admiral of the White, Cominandir-in-chirf, &c.