Nine out of ten of what we call new ideas are simply old mistakes. — G. K. Chesterton

America First - Lawton Evans




How General Schuyler was Saved

During the latter part of the Revolution, the war was carried on mainly in the South. Still, the people of the North were frequently attacked by parties of Indians and Tories, who descended upon the small towns and outlying houses, killing the inmates and carrying off all the plunder they could find.

At this time, General Schuyler was living in his own home, near Albany, just outside the wall, or stockade. It was a tempting bait for the Tories and Indians. A party of them resolved to capture the General and his family, and to plunder the house.

When the marauders were on the way, they found out from a Dutch farmer, whom they had taken, that the General's house was guarded by six soldiers, three by day and three by night. They told the Dutchman they would punish him if he mentioned seeing them, or if, in any way, he warned the General of their approach. They then let the Dutchman go; and, as soon as they were out of sight, he ran as fast as he could to tell the General of the attack.

The Schuyler family were all seated in the wide hall downstairs. The doors and windows were open, for it was a hot day in August. The guard was outside under the shade of the trees. Nobody was suspicious of danger. In fact, the General was dozing in his chair.

A servant entered the back door, and said, "There is a man outside who wishes to speak to the General." The General ordered him to be shown in. The Dutchman entered, and told of his meeting with the party of Indians. In fact, hardly had he delivered his message before a scuffle in the yard showed to the dismayed family that the enemy had actually arrived, overpowered the guard, and bound them hand and foot.

Schuyler hastily barred the doors and windows, and retired with his family to the upper rooms. The Indians approached the house, and tried the doors. Then, running to a window, they smashed the panes of glass, and made an entrance to the house. Schuyler, upstairs, with his gun in hand, stood ready to defend himself and his family. Around him were his negro slaves, each one with some kind of weapon. At the other end of the room, the women were huddled in fear, weeping and praying. In the mind of each arose the horrible tales of Indian cruelty, so common in that day.

Just as the Indians entered, Mrs. Schuyler cried out, "My baby! My baby! I have left him downstairs in his cradle." She made a rush for the stairs. Her agony was extreme, and only the strong arms of her husband kept her from going down amidst the savages, to snatch her child from death.

General Schuyler held her, and told her it would be death for both her and the baby, if she should carry out her purpose. As they were thus hesitating, one of their daughters said, "I will go after my little brother. They will not see me." With that, she slipped past her mother and father, and, in a moment, was down in the hall.

It was dark because the doors and shutters had been closed. The Indians were in the dining-room, devouring food, breaking china and furniture, and quarreling over their spoils. The girl darted by the open door, and reached the cradle where the baby lay asleep. Seizing the child in her arms, she started on her way upstairs, when she was discovered by one of the Tories.

He thought she was a servant-girl, and called out to her, "Here, where has your master gone?" The brave girl, half-way up the steps, turned and replied,

"My master has gone to the town to alarm the people. He will be here any moment with some troops."

When General Schuyler heard his daughter make this brave retort, he went to an open window upstairs, and fired his pistol several times. He then called out in a loud voice,

"Come on, my brave men! Here they are inside the house! Surround the buildings, and let no one escape."

He then made his negro slaves put their heads out of the windows, and utter loud yells of defiance. The Indians and Tories recognized Schuyler's voice, and, hearing all this noise outside, thought that surely troops had come to the rescue. They broke out of the house more quickly than they had broken in, and ran away much faster than they had come, pursued by shots from the General's rifles, and shouts from his slaves.

"My brave little girl," said Schuyler to his daughter, "you have had courage to do a brave deed, and wit enough to get us out of trouble."



Contents

Front Matter
Review

Leif, the Lucky
Spaniards Conquer Mexico
Conquest of Peru
The Fountain of Youth
De Soto and the Mississippi
Sir Walter Raleigh
The Lost Colony
Adventures of John Smith
More about John Smith
Pilgrims and Puritans
Miles Standish
Building a Canoe
Roger Williams
Old Silver Leg
William Penn
The Charter Oak
Bloody Marsh
Saving of Hadley
Sir William Phips
Hannah Dustin
Israel Putnam
A Young Surveyor
Young Washington
Indians and Major Putnam
How Detroit was Saved
Acadia
Blackbeard the Pirate
Daniel Boone
Sunday in the Colonies
The Salem Witches
Traveling by Stage-coach
King George and the Colonies
Patrick Henry
Paul Revere
Green Mountain Boys
Father of his Country
Nathan Hale
Elizabeth Zane
Capturing the Hessians
Lafayette Comes to America
Lydia Darrah
Captain Molly Pitcher
The Swamp Fox
Outwitting a Tory
Supporting the Colors
Nancy Hart
Mad Anthony
Execution of Major Andre
How Schuyler was Saved
An Indian Trick
Winning the Northwest
Benjamin Franklin
Nolichucky Jack
Eli Whitney
Thomas Jefferson
Burning of the Philadelphia
Lewis and Clark
Colter's Race for Life
Pike Explores Arkansas Valley
How Pumpkins Saved a Family
Old Ironsides
Tecumseh
Star Spangled Banner
Traveling by Canal
Lafayette Returns
Osceola, Seminole Chief
Journey by Railroad
Old Hickory
Daniel Webster
Henry Clay
Plantation Christmas
John C. Calhoun
Heroes of the Alamo
Freedom for Texas
Electric Telegraph
Gold in California
Crossing Continent
The Pony Express
Boy Who Saved Village
Rescue of Jerry
Abraham Lincoln
Robert E. Lee
Stonewall Jackson
Stealing a Locomotive
Sam Davis
Escape from Prison
Running the Blockade
Heart of the South
Surrender of Lee
Laying the Atlantic Cable
The Telephone
Thomas A. Edison
Clara Barton
Hobson and the Merrimac
Dewey at Manila Bay
Conquering Yellow Fever
Sinking of Lusitania
Private Treptow
Frank Luke, Aviator
Sergeant York