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Lafayette a Sinclair?
Benedict Arnold was at breakfast when he learned that British Major John
Andre was captured. Sinclair blood flowed in Andre. Andre found himself
deserted by Arnold's henchman, Tory Joshua Hett Smith, in what is now
Westchester county in New York. Disguised as a civilian, Andre had the
singular misfortune to be singled out by three American highwaymen who
stopped him and robbed him. In their zeal to steal even his boots, one of
the thugs noticed a suspicious bulge inside Andre's stocking and, when it
was unfolded, turned out to contain a map of the shabby fortifications of
West Point, which Arnold was planning to allow the British to capture so
that he could switch sides and join the British.
The three guttersnipes could not read, but decided to send the prisoner and
the papers on to Arnold, since the man was carrying a safe conduct pass
through American lines signed by Arnold. After turning Andre over to the
militia, the thugs resumed their avocation. The American commander thought
something might be suspicious and sent off a messenger to send a separate
set of dispatches to Washington. The greatest crisis in the American
Revolution, the turning point of the war, hung in the balance between three
rapacious scoundrels, some alert intelligence work by the Continental
officers, and the question of which general would see the papers first,
Arnold or Washington. The three churls were commemorated after the war with
a monument near where Andre was captured outside of Tarrytown, NY. Andre's
wish was to be shot. Hamilton, who had met with Andre several times, and
like many of the Americans was impressed with the young British officer's
"elegance of mind and manners," appealed to Washington on Andre's behalf.
Washington was unmoved. Andre had been apprehended in civilian dress and
was hung on 2 October 1780.
Arnold learned that Andre was carrying plans of the fortifications of West
Point, and that he had written a letter to General Washington identifying
himself as a British officer, and a safe conduct pass signed by General
Arnold. General Washington was stopping that day by for breakfast.
Arnold told his Tory Wife, Peggy the news. They successfully burned
numerous papers implicating him in treason. Arnold gave Peggy instructions
on how to act, then took off on his swiftest horse for his personal barge on
the Hudson River, ordering the crew to head directly toward HMS Vulture,
which was sitting in the middle of the river between the two camps.
Washington's young aide, the Marquis de Lafayette, were eager to pay his
respects to Mrs. Arnold and thus did not pay much attention to Arnold's
hurried departure. Within minutes, Washington rode up, took his customary
seat at the head of the table, and looked at the incriminating papers
regarding Arnold. He walked over to a window to catch the morning sun.
"My God!" he exclaimed softly to Lafayette, "Arnold has gone over to the
British. Whom can we
Col Alexander Hamilton, West Indian born 1/8 Negro, took off after Arnold,
Peggy started howling and caterwauling upstairs. When Washington reached her
side, she was gnashing her teeth and kicking her bed clothes wildly. This
display so convinced Washington of Peggy's innocence that he later gave her
a safe-conduct to join her husband in New York. Peggy later confided to a
friend that she was proud of her acting that day.
The remarkable French aristocrat, Lafayette was at the court of King Louis
XVI when he heard America call. The Marquis de Lafayette was born on 6
September 1757, in Chavaniac, France.He served in the French army from
1771 to 1776. In 1777, he went to America 20 years old and offered his
services to Congress, who appointed him a major general in the Continental
Army and an aid to General Washington.. He was decended from Duke of Albany
Born : 1454 at Stirling, Scotland and died 1484 Celestines Church, Paris,
Seine, France Alexander Stewart was the son of James II, King of Scotland,
Mother: Marie of Gueldres, Queen of Scotland, who married Catherine
Sinclair, daughter of the Earl of Caithness.
Lafayette fought with distinction in several battles before returning to
France in 1779, where he became a persuasive lobbyist for the American cause
of independence. He urged the French King to send men and arms to help the
Arriving back in America in 1780, he led the drive that drove British troops
under Lord Cornwallis to Yorktown. His leadership augmented by the powerful
French navy under de Grasse and thousands of fresh French troops under
Rochambeau t was ultimately responsible for the surrender of Cornwallis
When the French Revolution simmered, Lafayette was in the forefront of
the fight to transfer power from the aristocracy to the bourgeoisie,
drafting the "Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen." However,
he was a revolutionary only up to the point where he saw the lower classes
attacking the property of the middle and upper classes.
His attempt to suppress the radical democrats failed on 10 August 1792,
when the monarchy was overthrown by the mobs. Lafayette defected to the
Austrians, who held him prisoner until Napoleon ruled France and he played
an active role in politics for many years.
In 1824, Lafayette arrived in America for a triumphal tour of the new
American nation. Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Savannah, St.
Louis and Niagara Falls stopped their commercial activities to celebrate the
presence of the indomitable Frenchman covered as he was with glory from the
Everywhere he met aged American veterans who came to personally shake his
hand. At one eloquent moment, he stood in the churchyard of the Dutch
Reformed Church in Hackensack, NJ, and contemplated the grave of General
Enoch Poor, who had been killed in a duel. Tears filled the Frenchman's eyes
as he said, "Il était un de mes généraux! (He was one of my generals!)"
Lafayette died in Paris in 1834, and two continents mourned him. His is the
only grave in a country outside of the United States where the flag of the
United States is flown each day.
During the 1824 visit, an old soldier went up to Lafayette and asked, "Do
you remember me?"
"No," Lafayette said.
"Do you remember the frosts and snows of Valley Forge?" asked the soldier.
"I shall never forget them," answered Lafayette.
"One bitterly cold night when you were doing the rounds, you came upon a
sentry who was thinly clothed. He was slowly freezing to death. You took his
gun and said, 'Go to my hut. There you will find clothes, a blanket and a
fire. After warming yourself, bring the blanket to me. Meanwhile I will keep
guard for you' When the soldier returned to you, you cut the blanket in two
pieces. One piece you kept. You gave the other part to the sentry!"
Tears ran down the old soldier''s cheeks, "General, here is that half of the
blanket. I am the sentry whose life you saved!"
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