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An act of parlian:cnt opposed..
Mecting of the first Congress.
Articles of confcccration.
George Washington, commander.in.chicr.
General Montgomery marches against ('anada.
British cvacuatc Boston.
Declaration of Independence..
Armament sont to destroy Charleston
Battle of Long Island..
Capture of Burgoyne...
Thic British cvacuatc Philadelphia.
French flcct arrives at Virginia.
Stony Point takenly general Wayne
Arnold attempts to deliver West Point to the British.
Major .Andre taken as a spy.
Henry Laurens taken by the British.
Batlle at Guilford Court.Ilousc.
Prilish and French Accis engage.
Surrender of Cornwallis at York. Town.
'Treaty of peacc ratified...
Washington lakcs leave of the army.
clected President of the l'nited States
British attack on Ncw.Orleans.
C'ession of Florida...
To furnish the public with a concise history of America, from its discovery to its present state of civilization and importance, is an undertaking of such gencral utility, that the attempt, if it cven fall short of complete cxccution, has a claim to a considerable share of indulgence. This is more especially the case, when the writer has to follow a historian of such great and just celebrity as Dr. ROBERTSON, in at least onc-half of the work.
To compose such an historical critomc as is desirable, from scattered materials, is a difficulty of such magnitude as wholly to discourage the attempt; and to abridge he pages of so great an original, where there is nothing superfluous, nothing the reader would wish to be omitted, is a design which seems 10 border on temerity. But this abridgement has been preferred, because it is attended with the least chance of disappointment; and it is not ilishonorable to borrow, when the obligation is candidly acknowledged.
Dr. Robertson's history has, therefore, been implicitly jollowed in what relates to South America. His arrangement of the subject, his chronological order, and his very style hare bicen adopted, as the best that can be chosen. To condense his details, to introduce only the most
prominent and characteristic events, has been the prinicipal cffort, and invariable purpose of the cpitomizer:
cndcavoring to preserve, unbroken, the connexion and continuity of cvcnts; and to present the reader with a brief, but interesting, view of one of the most important cras in the annals of the world.
So far the writer travelled with pleasure :-but, in tracing the subsequent part, the history of North Ame3. rica, he has cause to regret the absence of so pleasing
and faithful a guidc-being obliged to collect materials from different sources, of all the British settlements in North America, from their first landing to the final separation from the parent state.
The settlement of these colonies being made at different periods, with charters of incorporation extremely variant, and with governments as distinct as their geographical boundaries, rendered a history of the British empire in America very complex and difficult. From this lctcrogeneous mass, the writer has endeavored, with considerable labor, to cducc a summary of those cvenis that paved the way to the American Revolution ; and this Synopsis will constitute an introduction to the future histories of the l'sitED STATES.
In that portion of the work which succeeds the confederation of the colonics, and the consequent declaration of Independence. wc sct our fcct on surer ground: we revive crents that happened in our own memory' ; and of which there are faithful records within reach of the generality of our readers. In treating on this part of the subject, it is not a very casy task, wholly to avoid that collision of opinions which is inseparable from frec governments, and which constitutes so great a part in the annals of l'nited America: but though difficult, the writer has endcavored to avoid it; contining himself, as much as possible, to a history of facts, and to those only that are of a national concern. His principal object has been to picscnt bis readers witn a comprehensive view of the wholc, without any respect to the politics of a single state or party; and to excite, if possible, a zeal for the general welfare and honor of our common country:- How far he has succeeded in this, as well as other parts of the work, must be left to the candid reader ; to whom it is now very respectfully submitted.
HISTORY OF SOUTH AMERICA.
IXTRODUCTION.-TALENTS OF COLUMBUS.—HE APPLIES TO SEX
ERAL POWERS FOR ASSISTANCE.-SAILS FROM PALOS.-DIS-
1. The discovery of America has led to events unrivalled in modern history, and we cannot sufficiently admire that steady unconquerable resolution, that amazing force of mind which carried Columbus, the first bold discoverer, through all opposition, and over innumerable obstacles, to the ultimate end of his grand design. The intelligent reader will be agreeably entertained in following this skilful navigator, through unknown seas, in scarch of a New World : every little incident during the voyage will appear of sufficient magnitude to fix the attention, and excite a strong sympathy with the adventurous chief, in all the various turns of his fortune.
2. According to Dr. Robertson, Christopher Columbus was 1
born in the ycar 1447 A. D. : the place of his birth is not ascertained, but it appears he was a subject of the Republic of Genoa, and was allured into the service of the Portuguese by the famc of their discoveries : he was descended froin an honorablc family, though reduced to indigence by various misfortunes.
3. Columbus discovered, in his early youth, a strong pro' pensity and talents for a sea-faring life : this propensity his pa
rents encouraged by the education they gave him : after acquiring some knowledge of the Latin tongur, the only language in which science was taught, at that time, he was instructed in geometry, cosmography, astronomy, and the art of drawing. To these he applied with such unremitted ardor, as they were so intimately connected with his favorite object, navigation, that he advanced with rapid proficiency in the study of them. Thus qualified, he went to sea at the age of fourtcen, and began his career on that clement, which conducted him to so much glory. His early voyages were to those ports in the Mediterranean which his countrymen, the Genocse, frequented. This being too narrow a sphere for his active mind, he made
ing mg 1
an excursion to the northern scas, and visited the coast of Ice. i wa land; he proceeded beyond that island, the Ultima Thule of ene; the ancients, and advanced several degrees within the polar . Co circle.
4. This voyage enlarged his knowledge in naval affairs iep more than it improved his fortune ; afterwards he entered into xma the service of a famous sca captain of his own name and fam. At thi ily. This man commanded a small squadron, fitied out at his by own expense, and, by cruising against ihc Mahometans, and the
piese Venetians, the rivals of his country in trade, had acquired both anxi wealth and reputation. Columbus continued in the service or this captain for several ycars, distinguished both for his courage and experience as a sailor : at length, in an obstinate en to gagement off the coast of Portugal, with some l'enciian cara. vels, returning richly laden from the Low Countries, the vessel on board of which he was, took fire, together with one of the enemy's ships, to which it was fast grappled.
5. In this dreadful extremity his intrepidity and presence of E mind did not forsake him ; for, throwing himself into the sea, tmels and laying hold of a floating oar, by his own dexterity in 10. swimming, he reached the shore, though above two leagues dis- vancir
hus was a life preserved for greater undertakings. 6. When he had recovered sufficient strength, he repaired to to Ina Lisbon, where many of his countrymen resided : they warmly ::licited him to stay in that kingdom, where his naval skill and were
xperience could not fail of procuring him that reward, which dida his merit cntiiled him 10. Columbus listened with a favorable car 10 the advice of his friends ; married a Portuguese lady, and fixed his residence at Lisbon. By this alliance, the spherc acti of his naval knowledge was enlarged. His wife was a daughter se of Bartholomew Perestrello, one of the captains employed by prince Henry, and who, under his protection, had discovered and colonized the islands of Porto Santo and Madeira.
7. From the journals and charts of this experienced navi. gator, Columbus learned the course which the Portuguese had joeld in making their discoveries. The study of these, gratificat and infamed liis favorite passion ; and, while he contemplated ilic maps and rcad the descriptions of the new countries which Perestrello had scen, his impaticnce to visit them becamc irre. sistiblc. In order to indulge it, hc made a voyage to Madeira, and continued during several years to trade with that island, with the Canaries, the Azores, the settlements in Guinea, and all the other places which the Portuguese had discovered on thic continent of Africa.