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859 > Page 859 of Annals of the West : embracing a concise account of principal events which have occurred in the western states and territories, from the discovery of the Mississippi valley to the year eighteen hundred and fifty-six.

1812. BLUNDERS OF THE GOVERNMENT. 859 " The British received their information hy way of Fort Erie, and an express instantly started from thence, who came the north side of Lake Erie to Maiden, and delivered the intelligence to that place on the 1st inst., by a circuitous route of one hundred miles greater distance than Governor Hull then was. The evil consequences of this gross negligence might have been immense; I will mention one which has resulted from it. ""When the army came to the foot of the rapids of Maumee river, Governor Hull, not then having received intelligence of the declaration of war, hired a small sloop in which he put his baggage and that of many of the officers of the army, all the hospital stores, his instructions from the war department, his commission and those of most of the officers of the 4th regiment, the ladies of two officers of said regiment, Lieutenant Goodwin and about thirty men, and was on the point of sending the pay-master with all the public money; this vessel, on passing Maiden, was captured with all its contents; the ladies, Mrs. Fuller and Mrs. Goodwin, were put on shore at this place the next day, but all the others of course detained." Another item of intelligence connected with this chapter of blunders, mishaps, and woes, was communicated to the publisher by Mr. E-, a venerable and highly respected gentleman of Am- heretburg, Canada West: " The commander at Fort Maiden was so certain of the Americans heing first informed of the declaration of war, that he desisted from attacking Detroit, at the sight of an unusual number of Mackinaw boats at the head of Lake Erie, which were supposed to contain an invading army." On the 2d of July, a letter of the same date with that received on the 24th of June, reached General Hall, and apprised him that the declaration of war was indeed made,* and before his astonishment was over, word was brought of the capture of his packet off Maiden. The conduct of the executive at this time was certainly most remarkable ; having sent an insufficient force to effect a most important objeet, it next did all in its power to ensure the destruction of that force. On the 1st of June, Mr. Madison recommended war to the Senate ; on the 3d of June, Mr. Calhoun reported in favor it, and in an able manifesto set forth the reasons; aud, on the 19th, proclamation of the contest was made. Upon the day preceding, Congress hav- * Hull's Defense, 11, 12.