“The party of the armed countrymen, though they had succeeded in their attempt, and were sufficiently triumphant on the occasion, were sorely perplexed how to dispose of their prisoners. After some discussion, one of them proposed to throw the decision upon the wisdom of the nearest magistrate. They accordingly proceeded with their prisoners to his mansion, about two miles distant, and called upon him to rise and attend to business. A window was hastily thrown up, and the justice put forth his night-capped head, and with more wrath than became his dignity, ordered them off; and in requital for their calling him out of bed in the cold, generously wished them in the warmest place. However, resistance was vain: he was compelled to rise; and as soon as the prisoners were brought before him, he ordered them to be taken in irons to the prison at Philadelphia. Lee improved the opportunity to take the old gentleman aside, and told him who he was, and why he was thus disguised. The justice only interrupted him with the occasional inquiry, ‘Most done?’ When he had finished, the magistrate told him that his story was very well made, and told in a manner very creditable to his address; and that he should give it all the weight it seemed to require. And Lee’s remonstrances were unavailing.
“As soon as they were fairly lodged in the prison, Lee prevailed on the jailor to carry a note to Gen. Lincoln, informing him of his condition. The general received it as he was dressing in the morning, and immediately sent one of his aids to the jail. That officer could not believe his eyes that he saw Capt. Lee. His uniform, worn-out when he assumed it, was now hanging in rags about him; and he had not been shaved for a fortnight. He wished, very naturally, to improve his appearance before presenting himself before the secretary of war; but the orders were peremptory to bring him as he was. The general loved a joke full well: his laughter was hardly exceeded by the report of his own cannon; and long and loud did he laugh that day.