Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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WAYNE, Anthony, soldier, born in Easttown, Chester County, Pennsylvania, 1 January, 1745; died in Presque Isle (now Erie), Pennsylvania, 15 December, 1796. His grandfather was a native of Yorkshire, England, and settled in County Wicklow, Ireland. Although a farmer by occupation, he saw military service, and commanded a body of dragoons at the battle of the Boyne, under William III. He sold out in Ireland, and, coming to Chester county, Pennsylvania, purchased property there. His youngest son was Isaac, who was a farmer and legislator, and held a commission in part of the forces operating against the Indians. Anthony was Isaac's only son, and was educated at the Philadelphia academy, he became land-surveyor, and in 1765 was sent to Nova Scotia as financial agent and surveyor in the service of wealthy association, on the recommendation of Benjamin Franklin. In 1767 he married and settled on a farm in his native county, but he continued to follow the practice of his profession, and filled several local offices. He was chosen in 1774 one of the provincial deputies to consider the disturbing relations between the colonies and Great Britain, and also a member of the Pennsylvania convention that was held in Philadelphia to discuss similar questions. During 1774-'5 he was representative from his native county to the Pennsylvania colonial legislature, and in 1775 he was a member of the committee of safety. Meanwhile, his fondness for military affairs led to his studying works on the art of war, and to his drilling such of his neighbors as he could inspire with his own feelings. He raised the 4th regiment of Pennsylvania troops, and was commissioned colonel on 3 January, 1776. With the Pennsylvania regiments he was sent to re-enforce the northern army, and in June, 1776, was assigned to General John Thomas's brigade. At Three Rivers his command attacked the British, and, although wounded and defeated, he withdrew his troops creditably and concentrated the force at. Ticonderoga, where he was ordered to assume charge. On 21 February, 1777, he was commissioned brigadier-general, and joined the army under General George Washington in New Jersey. During the summer of that year he was constantly on the alert, engaged in driving the enemy from the state, and his " bravery and good conduct" were publicly testified to by General Washington. At the Brandywine he commanded division, and was charged with the defence of Chadd's Ford, where he opposed the passage of the river by Baron yon Knyphausen with the Hessians. He fought all day, and at sunset effected a successful retreat. Wayne led the attack at Warren Tavern a few days later, and then had command of a flying detachment of 1,500 men, for the purpose of harassing the British rear; but he was attacked near Paoli by superior numbers on the night of 20 September General Wayne quickly formed his division, and, while his right sustained a fierce attack, a retreat was directed by the left, and the whole formed again not far from the ground on which they were attacked. Charges by Colonel Richard Humpton led to Wayne's demand of a court of inquiry, which unanimously acquitted him "with the highest honor." He was with the right wing at Germantown, and carried the position that was assigned to him to take, driving the enemy back more than two miles, when the Americans, having failed in their purpose, retreated. During the winter of 1777-'8 he did much to supply the American camp at Valley Forge with supplies, and in March, 1778, made a successful raid into the British lines, capturing horses, cattle, and other material. After Sir Henry Clinton abandoned Philadelphia, Wayne hung on the rear of the English, realizing the truth of what had been said of him early in the war, that " where Wayne went there was a fight always; that was his business." At Monmouth Wayne was the first to attack, but was ordered to retreat by General Charles Lee. After Washington had assumed command, Wayne came up with his troops and gave victory to the Americans. Colonel Henry Monckton, perceiving that the fate of the conflict depended upon driving Wayne away or capturing him, led his troops in a bayonet charge, in which almost every British officer was killed, including the leader. After this the British fell back, and in the night silently retreated. During the summer of 1779 Washington organized a corps of light infantry, the command of which he gave to General Wayne. His best-known achievement was the capture of Stony Point, a post on the Hudson river that commanded King's Ferry, the crossing-place between the New England colonies and those to the southward. It was strongly fortified, and was connected with the main-land by a tide-submerged causeway across a narrow marsh, making it an island at "high tide. The garrison of 600 infantry was commanded by Colonel Johnson. Wayne determined to carry the place by storm, and on 15 July, 1779, marched toward the fort, reaching a point within a mile and a half of the works at 8 o'clock in the evening. At midnight the Americans advanced in two columns, with unloaded muskets and fixed bayonets, and, surprising the pickets, forced their way through every obstacle to the centre of the fort. Wayne received a wound in the head, but, determining to die in the fort if the wound was mortal, entered the works with his troops, supported by his aides. The garrison soon surrendered, and not a life was taken after the flag was hauled down. The ordnance and stores were conveyed to West Point, and the works were destroyed. Congress voted a gold medal to Wayne, and silver ones to his two subordinate commanders. He also received thanks from congress "for his brave, prudent, and soldier-like conduct in the well-conducted attack on Stony Point," and a similar testimonial was given him by the general assembly of his native state of Pennsylvania. A year later he was sent to capture Fort Lee, but it was too strongly fortified. He was, however, successful in sweeping the country of cattle, horses, and of everything available for the use of the enemy's army, and thwarted General Clinton's plans. This raid gave rise to Major John Andre's poem of "The Cow Chase," which ended with the stanza: " And now I've closed my epic strain, I tremble as I show it, Lest this same warrio-drover Wayne Should ever catch the poet." As if by poetic justice, Wayne had command of the troops from whom the guard was drawn that attended Andre's execution. On 1 January, 1781, 1,300 men of the Pennsylvania line mutinied; but Wayne, by his tact, arranged the matter peaceably to the advantage of the government and the satisfaction of the troops. Soon afterward he was sent by Washington to join Lafayette, who was then operating against Lord Cornwallis in Virginia. At Jamestown Ford the British appeared to be falling back to avoid Lafayette, and Wayne attacked, by the latter's orders, but found himself confronted by the entire British force. Unable to retreat, he at once charged the enemy and fell back after disconcerting a projected manoeuvre against Lafayette. This action at Green Springs on 6 July, 1781, demonstrated Wayne's great ability as a general, in that he turned an almost positive defeat into a success. Wayne was actively engaged in the investment and capture of Yorktown. The first parallel was opened by him and General James Clinton with six regiments on 6 October, 1781, and five days later the second parallel was begun by the Pennsylvania and Maryland troops, covered by two battalions under the command of Wayne. In the attack on the 14th, Wayne supported the French troops with his Pennsylvania regiments. After the surrender he was sent to join General Nathanael Greene in the south, and on the night of 23-24 June he was surrounded by a numerous body of Creek Indians under an able chief and a British officer. For a few moments they held possession of his artillery, but, mustering his forces, Wayne attacked the assailants so furiously in flank and rear with sword and bayonet alone, that they soon broke and fled. With his own hand Wayne cut down a Creek chieftain, and in the morning the dead body of Guistersigo, the principal warrior of the Creeks, and the bitterest enemy of the Americans among these Indians, was found on the battlefield. When Charleston, South Carolina, was evacuated by the British on 14 December, 1782, General Wayne took possession of that city, which was the last military service he performed during the Revolutionary war. The brevet rank of major-general was conferred on him on 10 October, 1783. He then returned to Pennsylvania and resumed his civil life. In 1784 he was elected to the general assembly from Chester county, and also served in the convention that ratified the constitution of the United States. Subsequently he settled in Georgia on a tract of land that the state gave him as a recompense for his military services, and was elected a delegate to the convention that framed the state constitution in 1787. He was elected from Georgia to congress, and served from 24 October, 1791, to 21 March, 1792, when his seat was contested and congress declared it vacant. A new election was ordered, but he declined to be a candidate. He was nominated on Washington's recommendation to be general-in-chief of the United States army, with the rank of major-general, and was confirmed in that office on 8 April, 1792.
Indian tribes of the north west, instigated by the British, refused to cease hostilities after the peace of 1783, and previous attempts by Gem Josiah Harmer and General Arthur St. Clair at subjugating the savages had failed. Wayne collected an adequate force, and, conscious that failure in negotiating with the Indians would be followed by immediate hostilities on the frontiers, spent more than a year in drilling his troops and training them for the peculiar service for which they were required. In the autumn of 1793 he marched into the northwest, and near Greenville, Ohio, built a stockade which he called Fort Recovery. He pushed on during the following summer through the wilderness toward Maumee river, and at its junction with the Auglaize he built Fort Adams, as an intermediate post. In August he went down the Maumee with 1,000 men, and encamped near a British post at the foot of the Maumee rapids, called Fort Miami. Here General Wayne, with a force ample to destroy the Indians in spite of British influence, offered them peace if they would lay down their weapons. On their refusal he advanced to the head of the rapids, and on 20 August, at Fallen Timbers, attacked and defeated the Indians. Almost all the dead warriors were found with British arms. After laying their country waste he moved up to the junction of St. Mary's and St. Joseph's rivers, where he built a strong fortification which he called Fort Wayne. He spent the winter in Greenville, where, on 3 August, 1795, was signed a treaty with the Indians, in which twelve tribes participated. A lasting peace followed, and a large territory was acquired by the United States. Wayne returned on a visit to Pennsylvania, and was appointed sole commissioner to treat with the Indians of the northwest, and to take possession of all the forts that had been held by the British in that territory; but. while descending Lake Erie from Detroit, he died from an attack of the gout. AI-though Washington called him "prudent," Wayne's unexpected successes in perilous expeditions won for him his more popular appellation of " Mad Anthony Wayne." The title of "Dandy Wayne" was also applied to him, owing to his constant attention to dress, and in one of his letters to Washington he expressed himself in favor of an elegant uniform and soldierly appearance in preference to poorly clad troops with a greater amount of ammunition, he was called "Black Snake" by the Indians, perhaps because that reptile will attack any other species and rarely gets the worst of an encounter. After he defeated them in 1794 he was given the name of "Wind" or " Tornado," because "he was exactly like a hurricane, that drives and tears and prostrates everything before it." His body was removed from Presque Isle in 1809 by his son, and buried in Radnor churchyard in his native county, where the Pennsylvania Society of the Cincinnati caused a marble monument to be erected, which was dedicated with appropriate ceremonies on 4 July of that year. His portrait was painted by Charles Wilson Peale and by John Trumbull, from whose picture our vignette is copied. Wayne's residence at Easttown, Chester County, Pennsylvania, is represented in the accompanying illustration. See "Life of Anthony Wayne," by John Armstrong, in Sparks's "American Biography," and "Orderly Book of the Northern Army at Fort Ticonderoga and Mount Independence" (Albany, 1859).--His son, Isaac, born in Warren county, Pennsylvania, in 1770; died in Chester county, Pennsylvania, 25 October, 1852, received a public-school education, was graduated at Dickinson college, and acquired the title of colonel by his military experiences. He studied law, and was admitted to the Philadelphia bar in 1795. In 1814 he was the Federal candidate for governor of Pennsylvania, but was defeated. He was elected to congress from Pennsylvania as a Federalist, and served from 1 December, 1823, to 3 March, 1825.--His great-nephew, William, born 6 December, 1828, is the grandson of General Wayne's daughter, and took the name of Wayne, being the representative of the family and the owner of Waynesborough. He was graduated at the University of Pennsylvania in 1846, and during the civil war held the rank of captain in the 97th Pennsylvania volunteers. From 1881 till 1887 he served as a member of the Pennsylvania assembly.
Editor's Note: "Fort Adams was built on the St. Marys river, not the Auglaze."
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