“When Capt. Lee returned to Lancaster, he immediately attempted to retrace the ground; and so accurate, under all the unfavourable circumstances, had been his investigation, that he brought to justice fifteen persons who had aided the escape of British prisoners. It is hardly necessary to say, to you who know the fate of revolutionary officers, that he received, for his hazardous and effectual service, no reward whatever.”
“A perilous adventure,” observed Warner, as Kinnison concluded his narrative.
“It was,” replied Davenport. “It seems rather strange how Capt. Lee could so disguise himself and impose upon the enemy. But he knew a thing or two more than common men, and I shouldn’t wonder.”
“The British had many useful friends in every part of the country, during the war, and were enabled to do many such deeds,” remarked Colson.
“Fill up, my friends, another glass of ale, and drink the health of Capt. Lee!” added Hand, rising. The company filled their glasses and drank the toast. The veterans were not as deep drinkers as their young and vigorous friends, and therefore they merely sipped their ale and sat it aside.
“Speaking of brave men,” observed Colson, “I suppose there is not one of the company who will doubt the bravery of Gen. Morgan, the hero of so many fields.”
“The man who does doubt it knows not what courage is,” remarked Ransom, taking another sip of the ale.
“Well, I’m going to tell you something about his bravery,” said Colson. “Men have different ideas of that particular thing.”
“This ‘thunderbolt of war,’ this ‘brave Morgan, who never knew fear,’ was, in camp, often wicked and very profane, but never a disbeliever in religion. He testified that himself. In his latter years General Morgan professed religion, and united himself with the Presbyterian church in Winchester, Va., under the pastoral care of the Rev. Dr. Hill, who preached in that house some forty years, and may now be occasionally heard on Loudon Street, Winchester. His last days were passed in that town; and while sinking to the grave, he related to his minister the experience of his soul. ‘People thought,’ said he, ’that Daniel Morgan never prayed;’—’People said old Morgan never was afraid;’—’People did not know.’ He then proceeded to relate in his blunt manner, among many other things, that the night they stormed Quebec, while waiting in the darkness and storm, with his men paraded, for the word ‘to advance,’ he felt unhappy; the enterprise appeared more than perilous; it seemed to him that nothing less than a miracle could bring them off safe from an encounter at such an amazing disadvantage. He stepped aside and kneeled by the side of a cannon—and then most fervently prayed that the Lord God Almighty would be his shield and defence, for nothing less than an almighty arm could protect him. He continued