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CHAPTER XII.

SOUTH AMERICA, THE UNITED STATES, AND INDIA.

Macgregor's defeat at Puerto Bello, -State of affairs in Venezuela.-Opening of the campaign of 1819.-Capture of San Fernando d' Apure.-The Royalists in New Grenada defeated. Attempt on Angostura.-Battle of Cantanra and defeat of the Royalists.-March of Bolivar across the chain of the Cordilleras.-Decisive battle of Boyaca.- New Grenada and Venezuela united under the name of the Republic of Columbia.-Recapture of San Fernando.-State of the Belligerents.-Peru.-Chili.-Buenos Ayres.Brazil.-United States.-The Floridas.-Conduct of General Jackson censured.-Finances.-State of the country.-East Indies.-Death of Setoo, Chief of the Pindarries.-Capture of Aseerghur. - Second escape of Appah Sahib-Expedition against the Pirates of the Persian Gulf.

THE events of the war in South America, during the year 1819, turned the scale in favour of the Inde pendents, and rendered their ultimate triumph no longer doubtful. Disappointed of succours from the mother country, opposed to an active and enterprising enemy, combating in favour of a cause which could excite no enthusiasm, and compelled to struggle not merely against the enemy in the field, but against secret treason, and a hostile population; without money, without resources, and almost without hope; the Royalists were beaten in every battle, driven from the strongholds they had hitherto occupied, and nearly reduced to the last extremities.

The surprise and total rout of Macgregor's detachment can scarcely be considered as forming any exception to this general statement, inasmuch as it had no influence what ever on the fate of the subsequent campaign. That adventurer, with a small body of followers, whom he had succeeded in inlisting in this country, contrived, by a coup de main, to get possession of Puerto

Bello; but the Spanish General, Hore, who commanded in the neighbourhood, being informed of the insubordination that prevailed among these banditti, the exactions practised on the inhabitants, and the utter neglect of all precaution, assembled a few hundred followers, and marched to Puerto Bello, which he entered on the night of the 30th of April, or the 1st of May, without opposition. Not a single piquet had been stationed without the walls, or sentinel on the ramparts. The surprise was accordingly so complete, that Macgregor only saved himself by leaping from a window in his shirt, and swimming to a vessel in the roads. With the exception of a small body under Colonel Raffler, who, having retired to the fort, obtained a capitulation, the greater part of his detachment were either killed or dispersed. In the month of September, he made a similar attempt on Rio de la Hacha, to the west of Maracaibo, which he likewise surprised, but from which he was driven out a few days afterwards, by the Spaniards, who put to death the

remainder of the English volunteers who accompanied him on that occasion. But we must proceed to record events of a more important and decisive character.

By the former successes of Morillo, New Grenada had fallen under the yoke of Spain, and was now governed by the Viceroy Samano. This conquest had proved of the greatest importance, as it furnished considerable supplies of men, money, and provisions. But the spirit of independence had only been checked, not extinguished. Towards the close of last year, insurgent parties had made their appearance in the provinces of Tunja and Casanara; and the secret agents of Bolivar were busily at work in fomenting and encouraging the dispositions which the people were known to cherish. By these means, a corps of cavalry, amounting from 12 to 15,000 men, was soon organised, under Don Francisco de Santander, and formed into a separate body, to keep in check the forces of New Grenada during the approaching contest between Bolivar and Morillo.

On both sides preparation had been made, if possible to terminate the war in this campaign: The object of Morillo being, to penetrate, by the llanos or plains, as far as Angostura, the capital of the VenezueJan Republic; and that of Bolivar, to attack the places on the side of Caraccas, the seat of the government, and to attempt the conquest of New Grenada in person.

At the end of 1818, the Royal Army rested on three points, Santa Fe, Varinas, and Calaboso; the corps of Santa Fé being destined to act against Santander, and effect the submission of the province of Casanara. In opening the campaign of 1819, Morillo moved with the three divisions commanded by Generals

Torre, Morales, and Calzada, against San Fernando d'Apure, the Gibraltar of the llanos, and the key of the Orinoco. Paez, who commanded at San Fernando, having only about two or three thousand light cavalry, was in no condition to stand a siege, and accordingly evacuated the place, which was taken possession of by Torre on the 26th of January. At this period, the royal army consisted of seven regiments of infantry, three regiments of cavalry, and a numerous artillery; in all about 3500 men.

On the 4th of February, it effected the passage of the Arauca, in spite of several brilliant charges of cavalry by Paez, who, however, retired immediately after, his orders being to avoid a general action.

Bolivar, who, in the meantime, had been re-elected President of the Republic of Venezuela, seeing that it was impossible to prolong the campaign in the plains, by reason of the approach of the rainy season, resolved, according to his original design, to carry the war into New Grenada, where that season was shorter, and where he had reason to expect supplies of men, money, and provisions. Penetrating his intention, Morillo lost no time in taking up a strong position in the island of Achaguas, formed by the Apure, which cuts off the communication with New Grenada, and from which he expected to be able to communicate with all the divisions of his army, as well as with the different countries to be attacked or defended. Unfortunately for the success of this plan, the royal army of New Grenada, amounting to a bout 3500, was defeated by Santander with the loss of 1500 men, and the greater part of its artillery and baggage.

The object of Bolivar was now to

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effect a junction with Santander; and for this purpose he made a movement on the left flank of Morillo's position, defeated the division of General Torre, and leaving Paez with his Lancers to harass Morillo, entered the province of Varinas, where, on the 13th of June, he established communications with Santander; an event which totally changed the face of affairs, and the relative situation of the contending parties. Morillo had remained in all about two months in his position in the isle of Achaguas; but the difficulty of procuring subsistence, the approach of the rainy season, and the bold march of Bolivar, compelled him to abandon his original plan, and to fall back on Caraccas, where he employed himself for some time in endeavouring to augment his force by every possible, and almost desperate means.

In this situation, he resolved on an enterprise, which, had it proved as successful in the execution as it was bold in the design, must have been attended with fatal consequences to the cause of the Independents. A corps of 1500 chosen men, under Colonel Arana, were directed to proceed to Angostura, where the Venezuelan Congress was still sitting, and to endeavour to surprise the capital, which was well known to be destitute of all means of defence. The Colonel had reached within a few days' march of his destination, and the Congress were preparing to evacuate it, when General Marino approached from the side of Cumana at the head of about 1700 picked men. The hostile divisions met at Cantanra, near San Diego, where a furious encounter immediately took place. The Independents at first recoiled from the steady and destructive fire of the Royalists, who were all ve teran troops; but Marino, seizing a

standard, put himself at the head of his men, and led them to the charge. Animated by the example of their leader, they advanced with irresistible impetuosity, totally routed the Spanish column, and took its military chest, baggage and colours.

As soon as Bolivar had established his communications with Santander by the Orinoco, the Apure, and the Meta, the insurrection in New Grenada assumed a formidable appearance. Several detachments of royalist troops passed over to the Independents, and deputations from Socoro, Tunja, and Pamplune, repaired to the camp of Santander, who was only six days' journey from Santa Fé, to make a tender of their services. In consequence of these favourable dispositions, Bolivar prepared to enter New Grenada. The difficulties which he had to surmount in the prosecution of this hazardous undertaking were of the most formidable and appalling description. He had to scramble over the savage rocks of the Cordilleras, to cross rapid rivers formed by the torrents of rain which fell incessantly, and to sustain attacks in positions where a hundred resolute men might have stopped the advance of ten thousand. On the fourth day of his march, he had lost his baggage; his park of artillery had been destroyed; and the beasts of burden had perished from fatigue. In a word, after more than a month's march across the Cordilleras, which separate the country of Casanara from that of Santa Fé, he arrived, on the 1st of July, in the fertile valley of Sogamoso, near the city of Tunja,. where he found the royal army of New Grenada, encamped on the heights which command the valley. Harassed as he was, Bolivar did not hesitate a moment to attack it, and by a well-directed charge of caval

ry, and the intrepidity of some English companies *, who rushed up the heights with their bayonets, he succeeded in dislodging them from their strong position, and capturing a great number of prisoners, a quantity of arms and provisions, and the military chest. The Spaniards, commanded by General Barreyro, retired in tolerable order on Santa Fé de Bagota, by the route of Samaca; and Bolivar, whose object was to cut off their communications with Santa Fé, and, if possible, bring on a general battle, lost no time in following them. On the 7th of August, he came up with them near Venta Quemada, and that day decided the fate of New Grenada.

Just as the videttes of the republican army appeared in sight, the first division of the royal army eached the bridge of Boyaca. Bar reyra, thinking them only a corps of observation, ordered them to be attacked by his cazadores, while the main body of the army continued its march. By a rapid movement, Bolivar, with the whole of his infantry in column, took possession of a height which commanded the position, and forced the enemy to deploy in his turn, pass the bridge, and take up a position on the opposite side. After several partial attacks, the royal army made a movement towards its right, which however was stopped by the carabineers and the English companies; and then the action became general along the whole line. General Anzuategui, who commanded the centre of the Independents, forced the Royalists to retire to the height, where they endeavoured for some time to maintain themselves; but having succeeded in

turning their position, notwithstanding the terrible fire to which he was exposed, he forced them at last to surrender. On the left, Santander, who had only his cazadores, some companies of infantry of the line, and a few cavalry, was several times repulsed by the Spanish advanced guard, but as often returned to the attack; till at length they gave way at all points, and left the Independents completely masters of the field.

This was the most decisive victory the Independents had ever gained. The whole royal army were either killed or taken prisoners. Barreyro, with his lieutenant Colonel Ximenes, and nearly all his officers, fell into the hands of the victors; and it was calculated that, of 3500 men, not more than 50 had escaped. Thus, the battle of Boyaca, which had been gained with comparatively a trifling loss, proved as decisive for the Independents of Venezuela and New Grenada, as that of Maipo, last year, for those of Chili and Buenos Ayres.

On the 10th of July, Bolivar entered Santa Fé de Bogota in triumph, and was received by the people with loud acclamations, and hailed as their deliverer from a yoke which they detested. He had reason to congratulate himself on his extraordinary success; for, just three years before, he had been driven from the same place by General Morillo, who then appeared to carry every thing before him. Here also he received numerous recruits, besides three millions of piastres which the Viceroy had left in his coffers.

Bolivar did not fail to improve his victory to the utmost; but one of the most remarkable consequences of it was, the union of the republics

About 1000 men, enlisted at London, and subsequently regimented at Margarita, had joined Bolivar, at the commencement of this memorable march across the Cordilleras.

of New Grenada and Venezuela into one state, under the title of the Republic of Columbia; an event memorable in itself, and brought about solely by the wisdom and conduct of Bolivar, who appears to possess all the qualities necessary for the singular situation in which fortune has placed him. At the same time that this union was ratified by the Congress of Venezuela, it was resolved that a new capital should be built, and named after the man who had established the independence of his country; and that, while its building was in progress, the General Congress of Columbia should assemble in the central city of Rosario de Cucuta.

While General Bolivar was occupied with the political organization and the union of New Grenada and Venezuela, Paez was as active as the rainy season would permit. Morillo had left about 500 men in the fort of San Fernando d'Apure, and, on the river, a vessel mounting ten guns, which commanded the navigation, and assisted in the defence of the place. By a vigorous attack, Commodore Diaz carried the vessel on the 30th of September; and, on the 15th of October, Paez took possession of San Fernando, which the Spaniards had evacuated in such haste that they had time neither to destroy the works nor to carry off the ammunition. In this manner, the only loss sustained during the campaign was retrieved, while the Royalists were defeated at every point, and driven from every position which they had occupied at its commencement, with the solitaryexception of Cumana.

The Independents were now in a situation to procure recruits at pleasure for the army, and money and provisions for its subsistence. The principal division, under Bolivar, consisted of 6,000 men; Paez occu

pied Varinas and Guanara with about 4,000; and Marino and Saraza were stationed near the coast with native troops and the Irish legion, which had lately arrived under Devereux; consisting in all of 5,000 men, the élite of the army. On the 24th of December, Bolivar left Angostura for the purpose of opening a campaign which had been planned on a grand scale; flattering himself that he should reach Caraccas by the middle of February, and even be able to co-operate with the Independents of Peru, by means of the corps which he had sent from Popayan to Quito, where General Anzuategui met with but little resistance.

To carry on the campaign against this formidable body, and to occupy his strong places, the capital of the Government, and nearly the whole coast from Carthagena to Cumana, General Morillo had only between 9 and 10,000 men, most of them Creoles, upon whom no dependance could be placed. In this critical predicament his only resource was to dispatch one of his aides-de-camp, Colonel Leon d'Oterga, to Spain, to represent the necessity of immediate supplies of troops; but he only arrived in time to be a witness of the revolution of the 1st of January 1820, to which we formerly alluded.

The independent cause this year made little progress in Peru and Buenos Ayres. Lord Cochrane made two unsuccessful attempts on the Spanish frigates Venganza and Esmeralda in the harbour of Callao, and Buenos Ayres was so torn by intestine broils and factions, that the director Puyerredon, no longer able to struggle with this violence, resigned his office on the 9th of June, and returned to his original rank of a colonel in the army. General Don Jose Rondeau was appointed his successor. The democratical fac

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