The Liberty Boys' strategy; or, Out-generaling the enemy

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The Liberty Boys' strategy; or, Out-generaling the enemy
Series Title:
Liberty Boys of "76"
Moore, Harry
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New York
Frank Tousey
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1 online resource (28 p.) 28 cm.: ;


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Dime novels. ( lcsh )
History -- United States -- Revolution, 1775-1783 ( lcsh )
serial ( sobekcm )

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University of South Florida
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University of South Florida
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025101166 ( ALEPH )
68620923 ( OCLC )
L20-00012 ( USFLDC DOI )
l20.12 ( USFLDC Handle )

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Dime Novel Collection
The Liberty Boys of "76"

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l.s81ud Weekly-By Sub1criptiDn $2 .50 per '!JOIU". Entered tu Suond ClM J{a;tter at tlu Nw York Post Office, F'ebouary 4, 1901, l>y Frank Tomey. No. 55. NEW YORI{, JANUARY 17, 1902. Price 5 Cents. of the bridge, cut the stringer with a blow from went bridee. officer and some of his men.


. THE ;LIBERTY BOYS. OF. '76. A Weekly Magazine Containing Stories of the American Revolution. Issued Weekly-By Subscription $2.50 per year. Entered as Second Class Matter at the New York, N Y., Post Of tlce, February 4, 1901. Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1902, in the office of the Libraria n of Congress, Washington, D. C., bv Frank Tousey, 24 Union Square, New York. No 55. NEW YORK, JANUARY 17, 1902. Price 5 Cents. CHAPTER I. .A.T THE DANCE. ever, and those who were not dancing eyed the young man in wondering surprise Who was he? 'l'he young beaux decided that the intrusion of a stranger should be resented, and would have moved forward and addressed "Hello, they seem to be having a good time in there!" him at once, but were restrained 'by the girls, who had A horseman sat his steed in front of a farmhous'e, down been impressed by the handsome face and manly bearing in old Virginia. of the newcomer. It was about ten o'clock of a pleasant night in early "Oh, for goodness sake, don't go and interfere with spring. him!" said one jolly, black-eyed maiden "Handsome The farmhouse in question was lighted up in grand style, young men are scarce enough here, and it would be a sin and the sound of music and of joyous voices and to cause this one to take his departure. Indeed, we are silvery laughter came from within not going to permit him to be driven away, are we, girls?" The could not withstand the temptation. "No, no, no!" was the cry, and the merry maidens "J.ove I guess I shall have to go in and take a hand looked at the handsome young stranger, admiringly, out in that," he murmured. Then he leaped to the ground, tied his horse and walk ed quickly to the house. He knocked, and the doo r was of the corners of their eyes. The young beaux ahd looked gloweringly at the youth who had caused this troub l e Doubtless they wishopened by a colored man. ed the stranger in Jericho, or some other far-away place. "Come in, sah; come in," said the negro, bowing and showing his teeth in. a broad smile; "de young folkses is habbin' a fine time, sah, an' yo' hain't enny too airly, ef yo' wants ter put in a full night ob hit, sah." The stranger grasped the situation and was quick to take advantage of it. servant supposed him to be some young man of the neighborhood, and he would be One of their number, however, did not seem so p u t o u t. He was a handsome young fellow of about twenty years, he chucked the b l ack-eyed beau!y under the chin and said: "One wou l d think, Molly, that you did not have a very good opinion of we fellows as specimens of manl y bea u ty. How could you be so cruel .as to insinuate such a thing? enabled to enter the house and join the dancers without trouble I feel wounded, I do believe!" The. adventure was quite to his liking, and the young man-for he was a handsome young fellow of not "Oh, well, it is on l y your vanity that is hur t, Sam!" laughed Molly Marsden, "so I guess it will do you goo d more than twenty-one-said: "Show me to the cloak-room." instead of harm. Please go over and make the young "Dis way, sah." acquaintance and then bring him and introduce him Th f 11 d h h h to us, that's a good boy!" and Molly patted Sam Bostwick e man o owe t e negro to a room, w ere e on the head as if he were her little brother. laid aside his overcoat and then he made his way to the large room where the dancing was going on He fo.un d about thirty men and maidens in the room, and two sets were dancing a quadrille. That they were having a good time was evident Their happy faces showed that, and there was such freedom from restraint that the atmosphere was delightful. "Will you prom ise not to fa ll in love wit h him, Molly?" asked Sam, with exaggerated seriousness. The girl tossed her head and gave Sam a coq u e t tish l ook. "I will promise nothing, Sam Bostwick," she said; "I don't have to, for if you don't bring him ;here and in: troduce him, I shall go and make his acquaintance myself, All were talking and, and jollity reigned su-so there!" preme. "I see all my enid hopes going glimmering!" sighed The stranger's entr ance into the r oom was noted, how Sam, pretending to wipe a tear from the corner of his


2 THE LIBERTY BOYS' "Girls, which one of you will love me when the Sam was evidently not much frightened, for he laughstranger has robbed me of Molly?" ed and then introduced Dick to the different members of Smack! Molly's chubby hand struck the youth smart the group: blow on the cheek. The girls chatted with the young stranger as if they "Stop your fooling, Sam Bostwick the girl cried, "and had known him all their lives, and he was as jolly do what I told you to do." as could be. The other young men gradually became more Sam sighed. at ease and accepted Dick as one of them, and the talk "Well, here goes," he said; "1 guess I shall have to do and lau ghter was unconfined. Sam was the Jiveliest one it, but it is hard, awfully hard!" of all, his droll sayings kept the others in a con-He walked across to where the young stranger stood, tinual roar. and, bowing, said, in a voice loud enough for the group When the quadrille ended those who had been dancing he had just leH to hear: hastened forward and were introduced to Dick Slater. "Good evening. Those young ladies, yonder, are dying Sam took everythi ng into his own hands and explainedto know you, and sent me over to bring you and intrawitho11t knowing anything at all about it-that the young duce you. Just tell me your name and come along with man was froi:n the North, and, was on his 1my to visit me and I'll make you acquainted with some of the sweetrelatives living near Richmond. That satisfied all, and est girls in Old Virginia." "Sam!" almost shrieked Molly, shaking her fist at the youth's back. "Oh, I'll just about kill you the first time I get you to myself!" "I'll see that you don't get me that way," was the re sponse; ''henceforth I shall travel surrounded by a bodythe stranger was accepted at par and was soon as much one of them, seemingly, as though he had lived in the neighborhood all his life. "Partners for a \raltz!" called out the floor manager, and Sam Bostwick caught Dick by the arm and led him to Molly Marsden. guard." There was such a humorous on the face of "Here he is, Molly!" th:_ youth said. "Molly made me Sam as he addressed the young st'ranger that the latter promise to have you ask her to waltz with you," he osten tatiously explained to Dick; "so please ask her, if you are could not help smiling He could see that the irrepressible my friend, and wish to save my life." young Virginian was an original character, and fell into the spirit o'f the affair, offhand. Dick laughed, and then, bowing low, asked the pleasure of a waltz with the vivacious beauty. "The young ladies do me too much honor," he smiling; "it is uitl).ecessary to say that I shall be only too Molly graciously granted the favor and a moment later glad to make their acquaintance." they were whirling over the floor in an exceedingly "your name, Sir Knight?" remarked Sam, with a ful fashion, for bo,th were splendid waltzers. grandiloquent air "My -cake's all dough!" remarked Sam, with a serio "Richard Slater." "Aha! Sir Richard, come with me!" Sam seized the arm of Dick Slater and led him across comic air, after watching the two for a few momE(PtS; "Molly just loves to waltz, and fellow can beat me all to pieces. I might as well go and blow my brains put toward the little group, but paused when a few feet distant, and be done with it!" and pointing to Molly Marsden, said, in an exaggerated whisper, easily heard by all : "You can't do that, Sam; you haven't any brains!" said Molly, who was whirling past as the youth spoke and "That young lady is my sweetheart! Isn't she sweet? heard him, as he i'ntended she should. I think she is just lovely, but the trouble is that she knows "Never mind, Sam," said Lucy Whitcomb, a lively, it, and takes advantage of it and makes me her slave. 1 fair-faced girl; "there are as good fish in the sea as ever tell you this in confidence so that if she makes a dead came out." set at you you will be on your guard and be enabled to escape my fate." "Sam Bostwick!" cried Molly, shaking her head at "True, Lucy," cried Sam, brightening up; "come to think of it, you are a most charming girl, yourself. Come waltz with me and I will show that fair, hard-hearted one him in a threatening manner, yet with a repressed smile that I am not to be trifled with!" in her dark eyes-for she was used to the youth's ways and "All right, Sam," laughed Lucy; "a handsome young thought a great deal of him-"I'll se. ttle with you when fellow lik e you ought not to have much trouble in finding I get a chance some one to console him."


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 3 "'rhanks, Lucy. If Joe Harper wasn't looking, I would ingly. "Why, the right of might. Boys, select partners >:iss you for that!" for a quadrille! Fiddler, strike up the music.': The girl laughed merrily. The redcoats started forward, with eager look on their "Don't let that hinder you," she said. "Joe isn't jealous; faces. Evidently they thought they were going to have a md then, he ha sn't any right to object to any one kissing very enjoyable time. m.e. But Sam Bostwick stood his ground. She looked up into Sam's face with such a roguish ex"Back!" he cried. "You need not think that because that the youth could not help himself, and quick you are soldiers of the king, and are armed, that you a flash he gave her a smack. Molly happened to be can come in here and do as you please! You had better l 0oking at the time and she cried o .ut: be careful!" "You think you're awfully smart, don't you, Sam Bost"Get out of the "'ay !" cried the British soldier, menwick? well, I'll you that that is a game that two acingly. can play!" and quick as a flash she kissed Dick. [ won't!" was the undaunted reply. "Boys, come here The young man laughed and stand by me Let's not let these redcoats do they \ "ThankR !" he s aid. "I certain l y cannot complain of please. I for one will die before I will stand by and see y treatment h ere to-night. I'm awfully glad I stopped." them force our girls to dance with them!" The youths and girls who were not dancing, all of whom "Then die, curse you!" cried the li e utenant, drawing aw what was going on, laughed and teased and joked Joe his sword and drawing back to cut the brave young VirHarper at a great rate. "Lucy has gone back on you, Joe was the cry, but he did not seem to be at all alarmed. ginian down. There was no doubt but that the redcoat meant to kill Sam Bostwick. All who witnessed the man's action real"That i s all right," he said; "I know what Lucy is ized this, and a scream went up from the lips of the girls, up to. She is full of the Old Nick, and she did that to while a cry of horror escaped the youths, several of whom tea c Molly." leaped forward with the intention of trying to save their The waltz had just come to an end when all present friend. They would have been too late, however, for the were startled by the sudden appearance of eight British sword would have descended before they could have got soldiers who had pushed their way into the room without within reach of the redcoat fiend. Sam was not to die ceremony. on this night, however, and just as the sword startea to "Hello, here!" cried the leader of the redcoats, a darkdescend and a shriek went up from the girls, there came faced fellow, 1rearing a lieutenant 's uniform. ou are the sharp crack of a pistol and the li e utenant 's arri.J. fell having a fin,e time, aren t you? Well, we will take a to his side, broken by the bullet, while a wild cry of pain 11and. Boys, select your partners for a quadrille!" and rage escaped its owner. The sword fell to the floor CHAPTER II. PUTTING THE REDCOATS TO FUGH'f. with a clatter. All looked to see who had fired the s hot, and saw the young stranger, Dick Slater, standing at one side of the room with a smoking pistol in his hand. He had fired the shot and saved Sam's life. He at once took charge of affairs. He leaped forward and attacked the amazed and almost paralyzed redcoats The girls uttered a chorus of screams and retreated towith great fury, striking about him with the clubbed pistol ard a corner of the room, while the youths glared at the to wonderful effect. ntruders in an angry and defiant manner. "Go for them, boys!" he cried. "Com e on, and teach Sam Bostwick stepped forward, and, confronting the the cowardly scoundrels a lesson they will not forget in edcoats, said: a hurry!" "By what right do you intrude in. this manner?" The youths were quick to respond 1'hey leaped forDick, who was watching affairs closely, was surprised ward, and although the redcoats tried to draw weapons they o see that the light-hearted, seemingly frivolous youth were not given time or opportunity. They were knocked ad become serious and grim-looking, and that there was and beaten, and handled so roughly that they could do glint of danger in his eyes. nothing; and finally they found themselves thrown head what right, you ask?" said the lieutenant, sneer long out of doors


4 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. "Now, get on your horses and get away rom here youth was right in for it. The plan was to slip out as quickly as you can_!" cried Dick. "Yeu are not wantthrough a rear door and go around and attack .the red ed here, and i you try any more tricks you will not get coats rom both the right and the left, simultaneously. off with a few broken heads. Go; and be in a hurry about it, too!" The redcoats made all possible haste to get out of the yard," but paused just outside and began talking, eagerly and excitedly. "They are planning mischief," said Dick to Sam; "they will come back and try to enter the house. As. they are The youths armed themselves with the weapons and then those who had no firearms secured such things as they could lay hands on, that would answer for implements of warfare. Thus equipped they left the house by the rear door, and dividing into two equal parties, rushed around the house and attacked the redcoats with great fury. Several shots were fired and two of the redcoats were armed, they may be able to cause us some trouble. Quick, wounded; and then the rest received such a beating as they let's get inside and bar the door; and then, i there are had never had before. They were knocked down ?-nd their firearms the house, o you boys get them. We weapons taken away rom them and then they were again will have to fight the scoun,drel s." hustled out of the yard, being thrown bodily over the The youths hastened within doors and dosed and barred fence. door. 'I'hen Dick told the girls to go upstairs. ow go cried Dick; "and don't be slow about it, "We are going to have a fight with redcoats," he either!" said, "and we don't want you girls to be where you will run any chance o being hit by a bullet." The girls were frightened, with exceptions, an,d hastened to go upstairs: The exceptions were Molly Mars den and Lucy Whitcomb. The redcoats hastened to untie their horses and mount, the wounded ones-three, counting the lieutwant-not being so badly wounded as to make them incapable of climbing into the saddles. As they turned their horses to ride away the lieutenant cried out: , "Oh, let me stay downstairs and help you fight!" Molly "We go, now, but we will return again. I understand implored. "I can shoot just as good as any o the boys." that this is a Whig neighborhood and I will come back . "And so can I!" said Lucy Whitcoml,l. "Let me help and bring a sufficient force with me s o that we will be able you fight those insolent redcoats!" But Dick and the otb,er youths to do as we please, and then you will realize that this is them from about the worst night's work you ever did .J. this. "That will do," said Dick, sternly. "Don't make any "We cannot permit it,"' said Dick, decidedly; "besides, threats. Go and bring a force here, if like; we will we do not need any assistance. There are enough o us be ready or you, and I think that you will get all you to whip twice as many .o the redcoat s as there are out want!" ,, (l' there." "Bah! when you see all your homes in flames you will A rifle and a musket ai{d three pistols ; as well as an old think cried the British officer, venomously. sword and plenty of powder and 'bullets found, ''And as for you, you young scoundrel, I have a score (o the youths felt that they cduld put the enemy to flight. Mr. settle with you. 'X'ou shot me in the arm and nothing Hardy, at whose house the dance was heing held, was a but your heart's blood will cancel the-debt!" warm patriot, and he was ready to help the youths fight. I am afraid the debt will have to remain uncanceled, Two or three of the youths, Dick noted, were anything then, for I haven't any heart's blood to spare," replied but enthusiastic for the work in hand and he was shrewd Dick, quietly. Then he pointed down the road. enough to guess that they were inclined to Toryism. "We have heard quite enough of you!" he added, stern-Just then there came the noise of pounding on the ly. "Go! and thank your lucky stars that you are perfront door ; and a hoarse, angry voice called out: f. mitted to do so. I will just add that i you will tak "Open the door! Open it at once or we will break it my advice you will stay away from this neighborhood." down!" "I will be back here with two hundred men in less tha The lights had all been extinguished in the front room forty-eight hours!" was the fierce reply. "And we so that the enemy could not see in and take aim at the get here, look out. We will burn down the house o ever defenders, but a s udden thought came to Dick and he Whig in this part of the country!" made up his mind to carry the war into Africa, so to "Go!" cried Dick. "And I will just say that i you d speak. come, you had better be prepared to look out for yourselves He. his plan to Sam BostWick, and the you will not get off so easy as you have this time."


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. "Bah!" sneered the lieutenant; "that is mere boy earned the dislike of the :roung fellows. As it was, howbravado. Come, men," and whirling his horse be galloped ever, not one of them but what was willing that his girl away down the road. He had tucked his wounded arm dance with the young stranger. inside the front of his overcoat, thus making an improlnptu For once in : his life Dick had all the dancing that he sling, and had no trouble in guiding his horse with one wanted, and he certainly enjoyed himself hand. About midnight supper was announced and Di:ck had "Say, he must be a pretty nervy fellow, Dick," said Sam the honor Jf taking Molly Marsden in to the Two Bostwick; "that arm of his must have been giving him or three tables had been placed in a row, end to end; considerable pain, yet he sat there and talked as boldly covers laid over these and they fairly groaned with and fiercely as if he were not wounded at all." the weight of good things upon them. It was really one "He has plenty of nerve," agreed Dick, "ahd he is a long table and all the young people were enabled .to have big scoul\drel, too, or I'm no judge." The youths now hastened back into the house to let ihe girls know they had triumphed and the enemy to flight. The big front room was lighted up again and the girls had come downstairs. As the youths entered the house they were surrounded by the girls who chattered like magpies, asking innumerable questions. "Oh, Mr. Slater, you saved Sam's life!" cried Molly Marsden. "I'm going to give you a kiss for that!" and she threw her arms around Dick's neck and gave him a smack. Then she leaped into Sam's arms and kissed him, again and again. places at it at the same time. It was a jolly crowd. The young people ate and : drank Rnd laughed and talked and. enjoyed themselves ly. Dick was given the position of honor at the head of ) the table, and there was mucb good-natured rivalry among the girls, each of whom tried to get the youth to talk to them as much as possible. Molly being his partner at the table, naturally bad the advantage and she used it t6 the extent. r As there had been just fifteen boys and fifteen iirls before Dick arrived at the farmhouse, there was no one for Sam to take out to supper. He was not a whit however, but took his position at the foot of the tible and soon had all roaring at his comical remarks. "J'ye lost :Uy best girl, -

6 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. good-n&ured she enjoyed the fun almost a!' much as the young folks and entered into the affair with zest. "Now, where are you, Molly Marsden?" cried Sam, with a grandiloquent air. "There's no use of your trying to get ahead of Sam Bostwick!" "It is quite probable that we will meet a number of times. I have about made up my mind to remain in thit: neighborhood a week or so." This was pleasing news to all, and they told him that if he would do so they would see to it that another dance "Oh, that's all right!" retorted Molly, tossing her head or two should be held. with an independent air. When all had gone, Dick turned to Mr. Hardy and "Do you remember what I told you when we were danesaid: ing together this evening, Sam?" asked Lucy. "If you have no objections, sir, I will spend the rest "What was it, Lucy?" of the night with you." "Why, that there is as good fish in the sea as ever came "I should certainly object if you were to try to go away," out. You 've found that to be true, haven't you?" with was the hearty reply. "You are welcome to stay, not only a nod toward Mrs. Hardy. the rest of the night, but a week, two weeks, or as long "Yes, indeed!" replied Sam, promptly; "just as good you care to remain. I assure you we shall consider it an ,ones-and bigger ones, too." 'l'his caused an outburst of honor to have you with us." lau ghter and none laughed more than Mrs Hardy, who "Thank you," said Dick. "I may talm advantage of could appreciate the joke even though it was at her own your kind invitation." expense. Dick was shown to the spare room, and was soon sound W)1en supper was over the young folks returned to the asleep. l arge front room and while waiting for the negro musicHe was up bright and early, however, for he knew that ian to eat his supper, Dick took up the violin and placing there was work for him to do. it under his chin, drew the bow across the strings in a manner which betokened the fact that he was a master of the instrument. Then he played piece aftm piece, while the boys and girls listened with breathless eagerness. Never in their CHAPTER III. lives had they heard such music. Mr. and Mrs. Hardy came to the door and listened, and behind them were a dozen negro slaves who had been drawn hither by tM music. DICK AND SAM: AT WORK. After breakfast next morning Dick called Mr. Hardy to At last Dick laid the instrument down with a sigh one side. 'l'he old fiddle was a good one and he could have played all "I wish to talk to you," he said. night. "What about, Mr. Sl,.ater?" Instantly a roar of applause went up. A ll clapped their hands and the girls crowded aro und the youth and all "About the redcoats. You know those scoundrels who were here last night said they would be back within forty talked at once, congratulating him on his wonderful playeight hours with two hundred men, and that they would ing. the home of every patriot in the neighborhood." "Say, that was Dick!" said Sam Bostwick, when "I know they did, and the matter has been giving me a be could make himself heard; "it beats anything I ever great deal of worry. It will not be pleasant to be burned heard, and if you ha.d kept it up a minute or two longer out of hnuse and home." :I almost believe I could have forgiven you for taking Molly "No, indeed; but I don't think there \s any necessity away from me." of it." The negro musician showed up at this juncture and "How are we to help ourselves?" dancing was. immediately resumed. It was kept up til1 "Mr. Hardy, how many patriot familieare there ip. this three o'clock and then the party broke up and dispersed to their various homes, but not until each and every one had shaken hands with Dick Slater and told him how The man was silent for a few moments, and then said : "Within a radius of five miles there are at least forty glad they were they had made his acquaintance. To some j Whig families." of them who inquired if he thought it possible that they J "Forty, eh?" ever meet again, the youth said: ;" "Yes." \


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. "And about how many young men are there in those you would be away down here in Virginia," he added. forty families?'' "1 supposed you were away up North somewhere." "Oh, I should say there are one hundred and twenty"I have been sent down her.e by General Washington, five." for the purpose of assisting in holding Arnold in check," "Good! Then there is not the least use of permitting Dick explained,. the redcoats to com e in here and burn the patriot families "But how comes it that you are alone? Where are out of hpuse and home your 'Liberty Boys?'" '"How will you prevent it?" "The commander-in-chief had some work for them to "By o'rganizing a company among the young men of the do, and so I came on ahead, in ordt\r to learn the lay of the neighborhood and showing fight when the redcoats come." land. I am glad that I did so, as now I shall be able to Hardy was surprised. Such a thought had not ac-help you people save your homes." curred to him. "I am glad of it, too," said Mr. Hardy, and then he "Why," he went on, "whtJ.t could boys do? You could rushed into the house and told his wife and daughter not cope with the trained soldiers of the king!" Mabel that their guest was Dick Slater,1 the captain of the "And why not?" company of "Liberty Boys" they had heard s o much about, "Well-because you are only boys." "That doesn't make any difference; boys can fight just as well a s men. Listen here! Have you e ver heard of "11he and that the "Liberty Boy s were on their way down into Virginia, and that Dick had come on ahead to get the lay of the ground. Liberty Boys of '76'?" "Ob, goodness! Won't the girls b e tickled when they Hardy thought a moment. 'l'hen a look of intellilearn who the young man really was that they danced with gen c e appeared in his eyes, and he nodded his head. last night!'' exclaimed Mabel her eyes s parkling. "Just to "Yes, yes!" he said. "I have heard of them, and how think of it! And I danc e d with him twice." they hav e done such wonderful work in the North, with "And he' s going to organize a company among the boys Oeneral Was hington's army. But, then, they are-" of our neighborhood, and fight the redcoats when they "Me r e boys, the sam e as are 'the youths of this neighcome to burn our homes," add e d Mr. Hardy". borho o d and the boys of the South are just as brave as "Oh, glory!" cried MabeL "A c ompany of 'Liberty Boys' thr y o uths of the North and there i s no reason why the)' right her e at home! Won t t h a t be fine! Oh, I wish I was should not mak e just as good fight e rs." "That is undoubtedly true," acquiesced the farmer; "but they would have to hav e training, and would they get it? Those 'Liberty Boys' you speak of had splendid a boy, so I could join the company! But maybe he get up a company of girls, or let us join, anyway!" "Oh, no, Miss Mabel!" exclaimed Dick, who had en tered and heard the girl's last words. "There will be training, and had good officers. Why I remember, now, enough of the boys without you girls having to take up of hearing the mo s t wonderful s tprie s regarding the captain arms. You give us the encouragement of your good of the 'Liberty Boy s .' His name was Dick Slater, and-" wis hes, and that will be sufficient." Mr. Hardy s uddenly stopped and s tared at Dick in open"Oh, if you will whip the redcoats and save the homes mouthed amaz e ment. His looks were so comical the youth of the patriots, we will do more than that--we will love could not help s miling. you, oh, so much!" the impulsive girl cried. "W-why, y-your name is D-Dick S-Slater!" the man "Te ll that, to the boys and they will fight like demons!" gasped "It can't be possible that-that--" smiled Dick. "That what?" asked Dick, enjoying the man's excite ment "We girls \\jll tell them, never fear!" Dick knew that he would have but little time to spare, "That you are Dick Slater-the Dick Sla.ter we have and a s ked Mr. Hardy if he would assist him in organizing h e ard so much about, I mean?" the company by going with him telling "I am Dick Slater and am the captain of 'The Liberty patriot youths lived. i. ', .. Roys of '76,' was the quiet reply. "I s hall be only too glad to do so, Dick was th' e epl:y. Mr. Hardy was greatly excited. He wondered that he They s addled horses, mounted, and half an hour _l!ljll r had not thought that Dick might be the young man he wer e on their way to the nearest Whig neighbor's hofue. had heard so much about as soon as he had heard the: Tt happened that this was where Sam Bostwick lived youth's name the night before. "But, then, I never thought of such a thing 1 When he saw Dick he gave the youth a joyous greeting as With all his frivolous manner, Sam was a manly, good-


8 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. hearted 'and he would never forget that the young They brought their horses to a stop, and Sam called man had saved his life. to Joe to come the fence. The youth obeyed. When he learned that Dick was the Dick Slater who had "What do you want?" he asked, leaning over the fence be come so famous in the North, both as a soldier and as a and eyeing the two in a not too friendly fashion. spy, he was as greatly surprised as Mr. Hardy had been, and when he learned that it was the youth's intention to organize a company from among the Whig boys of the neighborhood to fight the redcoats and protect the patriots' homes, he was wild with delight, and was right in for it. "We want you to join us, Joe." "To join you?" .Toe evidently did not know what to think. "Yes; to join 'the company which are going to or ganize to iight the redcoats with "The boys will be crazy to he declared; "you will Joe turned pale. "You are going to organize a company Jwve no difficul y in getting enough for a company." to :fight tl1e British?" 'be almost gasped. Dick knew that there was. good stuff in Sam, and told u Yes. Of course you'll join! All the boys will be glad i1im that he should be the second in command, and that tc Jo sn. This is Dick Slater, who was at the dance last they : w9uld togeth()r organize the, company.___ night. yc.iu know. Well, he is the tell ow we have heard so T-9is pleased Sam_ greatly, though he said t)lat there were inuch abort-the captain of 'The Libert. y Boys of ''16' you of the boys would niake a better officer than he. know-and he is going to be the captain of our company, .'I his : Dick did not believe, however, and said so, and it and drill us and teach us how to fight." was decided that Sam should be second in "You boys can't expect to stand before the trained sol sue!). a youth for a right-hand man, Dick felt that there diers of the king," said Joe, with a sulky air. ''They will would be no trouble m getting things in good working kill every one of you." shape very quickly. Dick told Mr. Hardy that he might return home,as with Sam to aid him he would not need any _other assist ance; The farmer was glad to do this, as there was work he wished to qo; so, wishing the youths success, he rode back to his home. "You think so?" "Yes; you had better give up the idea of fighting them." "Do you mean by that that you will not join us?" "I certa inly shall not join you! I have no desire to die a sudden and violent death." Sam'$ eyes flashed. Dick and Sam set out at onc .e. Sam ma. de : no move to"You are either a Tory, and sympathize with the king, stopping at the first house they cal!le to, although or y0u are a big cowarQ., Joe Hooker!" he cried hotly a y oung man was to be seen out in the barnyard watering Joe's face flushed. "I'm no coward, Bostwick!" some stoc k. he replied; "and if I don't see fit to join this company, Dick mentioned this, and his companion explained by utwhich you say you are going to organize, I don't know that tering the one word, "Tories." "Ah! That's it, eh?" remarked Dick. "Wasn't that fel low at the dance last night?'! "Yes_; a .nd didn't you notice that he wasn't enthusi astic when you said we wonld fight the redcoats?" it is anybody's business." "It ought to be your 11usiness to wish to fight to save the homes of your neighbors from being burned down, .Joe Hooker; but I suppose you think that because your folks are Tories your house will escape the general ruin, "Yes, I noticed that, and there were two more in the and you don't care what becomes of the rest." same fi'l:, UJJlcss I am badly fooled." "I don't have to stand here and listen to your talk," said "Yes; there were three Tory boys there. This one here Joe, with a sullen look on his face, and he turned and went is Joe Hooker; the other two live five or six miles away." They were almost opposite the youth in the barnyard now, and he nodded to the two, and called out, "Good morning," though in not a very pleasant way, they thought. '"Hello, Joe!'' called out Sam. Then he winked at Dick, back to his work of watering the stock. The two rode onward. A quarter of a mile further they came to the home of Molly Marsden .. The girl happened to step out of doors just as the two, having dismounted and tied their horses, were approaching the house, and she gave a cry of delight and advanced to and said in a low voice: "Let's ask him to join us, and see meet them. what he says.'' Dick nodded. ''All right," he said. "You do the talking." ., "I am so glad to see you again, Mr. Slater!" she ex. claimed, giving Dick her hand. "And I am very glad, indeed, to see you again, Miss


I .. I THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 9 "Marsden," snid D i'ck, shaking with the beautiful Of cour se, there a diversity of So_me were girl. s anguine the youths would be able to :fight the British Sam held . out hi s hand. "Aren't you going to shake s oldiers while others shook their heads and hands with me, Molly?" he a s k ed. grave doubts regarding this. She Elaced her hand s behind her and shook her head. "They are only boys," was the remark of these, "and "Not yet," she declared; "you acted just too awfully c annot hope to successfully cope with the trained soldiers mean last night for me to forgive you so soon. I am not o f King George. It will simply result in all of losgoing to be friends with you for a whole week!" ing their lives, and our homes will be burned "Not even if I am going to go, to war and run the same." risk of being killed, Molly?" Others said: "The young man who is at the head of Therewas a serious, half-beseeching tone to the youth's this is Dick Slater, the famous captain of the 'Liberty voice which was not lost upon the girl, for she looked Boys,' of whom we have heard so much, and what he doesn't at him quickly and inquiringly and said: about fighting isn't worth knowing. His coib'pany, "What do you mean?" that has done such wonderful fighting, is made 'up of "I mean that we are going to organize a compan y from boys, and they are no brave, naturally, than are our among the boys of the n e ighborhood and fight the red-boys. Dick .'_"ill teach how to and when i:hose coats when they come h e re to burn our homes, Molly redcoats come they will meet with a such as they The girl opened wide her bright eyes. are not dreaming of." "Are you, really?" she cried, eagerly. was great The youths were OD;lY too and truly." glad to join the company They were eager for the chance "Then I'll do more than shake hands with you, Sam; to get a blow in for the great cause. I'll do-this!" and she leaped into his arms and kissed By noon Dick and Sam had recruited more a him, again and again. hundred youths, and in compliance with orders; they "I feel as if I could whip a regiment of soldiers all by met in a large, open field, back of Mr. Hardy's, at :Oae myself!" said Sam, with a grin, when Molly had released o clock, for the purpose of doing some drill work. Each him. "I'm glad1I am going to be one of the members of and every youth had a rifle or musket and a pair of..pisthe company, Dick!" CHAPTER IV. THE BOY DEFENDERS. as well as plenty of ammunition; and many had knives, while a few sported swords. Sam was one who had unearthed a sword which had been used by his father in the French and Indian war, and he gave this to Dick. A great c:r;owd had gathered to see the drilling, imd to cheer the young soldiers with their presence: Dick losLno time, !lS there was none to spare. The red coats would reach the neighborhood some time next day, The news that the young man who had stopped in at the and they must be ready to meet the enemy. He set the dance at M;r. Hardy 's, and who shot the redcoat lieutenant boys at work ,at once and it was soon seen by the spectators, and saved Sam Bostwick's life was the gre(lt Dick Slater, some of whom were old soldiers who had seen service in the famous scout and spy, of whom all had heard, and other campaigns, that Dick Slater knew his business . HI'! that he was going to get up a company from among the pnt the boys through the manoouvres with a speed and {! youths of the neighborhood to fight the redcoats when energy that aroused all to enthusiasm, and the people they came to burn the homes of the patriot s spread with cheered themselves hoarse applauding the work of the boy wonderful qui c kne ss. Soon everybody in the settlement knew it, and the r e was gre at excitement. All had been They worked rapidly and steadily for a couple of worried when their young folks told them what the redand then paused to rest a few minutes. Of course; the eoat lieut enant had s aid he would do, and had been at a girls crowded around the youths and there was fun and loss what to do. Some had thought of taking such of jollity galore. their world s good s as they could a:Qd fleeing before the . "Oh, just whip those redcoats, Sam Bostwick, and will British came, but now that they knew there was a chance love you always!" qied Molly Mar s den. that they might save their homes, they decided to remain "I pity the redcoats!" said Sam, with a fierce air. and take chances. "Jove! if a lot of you girls were to talk that way .to a


f 10 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. lot of ihc boys, we could whip a regiment of the British often told mr r 11a. the most beautiful girl living, 'and you and not more than half try, either." know it!" "Then I'll see to it that they do talk that way to a There was a shout of laughter at this, and for a roolot of the boys!" cried Molly, and she began circulating went Sam was taken somewhat aback. Then he laughed, among the girls and talking to them. There was much too, and said: laughter, and sidewise glancing at the youths, and after "If I ever told you that I must have been temporarily :>. while the girls began singling out the youths and soon crazy, or thought you were some one else.'' every girl had button-holed a boy. In almost every case The boys returned to their work of drilling, now, and ihe pair had been "keeping company" for a year or so, kept at it for another two hours Most of the older people and when, after a brief conversation, the youths were seen who had been watching the drilling had gone home, but to take the girls in their arms and kiss them, the action ihe girls remained, and when the drilling was finished the was understood by all: A hundred betrothals had been boys walked home with them "signed and sealed A great cheer went up from the Dirk had arranged for the youths to meet again early spectators. The majority were parents of the boyil and ihe next morning, and they promised to be on hand. He girls, and were pleased to know that the formation of the was very well pleased with the progress made, and said i.o company of young soldiers was to be responsible for many Sam that he thought they would be able to make the weddings in the not far distant future redcoats wish they had stayed away. Dick, of course, was only a spectator of this, for had a sweetheart of his own in far-away New York, but he was young and his eyes shone with pleasure and sympathy as he gazed upon the scene Presently the girls r e lea se d themselves from. the arms of their sweethearts, and, h eaded by Molly Marsden, march-ed in a body to where Dick s tood. CHAPTER V. LIEUTENANT SHARPLEY AND TRAITOR ARNOLD. "Mr. Slater," said Molly, as Dick doffed his hat and The eight redcoats who had been treated so roughly stood uncovered before them, "we have come to tell you by the boys when they intruded at the hom e of Mr. Hardy, that if you lead our boys to victory and whip and drive rode at as. rapid a pace as was possible, and kept it up the redcoats away, we girls will each and every one of us for hours. Finally, however, they stopped at a farmhouse give you a hug and a kiss, and keep a warm spot in our and put up for the night, and the lieutenant's broken hearts for you always." arm was set and the woonds of the other two soldiers were "'rhanks, Miss Molly," said Dick, bowing ; "I shall do dressed. my utmost' to earn those hugs and kisses, and if earned, will accept them in the same spirit in which they are ten dered, and I know when I return to my home in New York and tell my sweetheart about it, she will love you girls for being kind to me." "Oh-h-h-h-h !" shrieked the girls, with eager eyes; "you have a sweetheart! How nice--how glad we are!" and they clapped their hands gleefully and fairly danced Next morning they were away again, however, and about four o'clock in the afternoon they reached the encampment of Arnold, the traitor, who was now in command of a force of British, down in Virginia. Their entry into the camp, with three of their number wounded and minus their weapons, created considerable excitement, and when they told their story of how they had been disarmed and kicked and cuffed by a crowd of "Yes, and how g lad we are, too!" said Sam, with a droll "rebel" boys, the anger of all Knew no bounds. air; "for now we boys can breathe more freely, knowing When the reported to Arnold, the arch traitor that there isn't so much danger that Dick will take one was very angry, and raged like a lion. of the girls away fJ:9m one of our fellows!" "Why, this beats anything I ever heard of!" be cried; "Oh, you m ea n, jealous-hearted thing!" said Molly, with "to be beaten and kicked by a band of cubs and robbed mock severity. of your weapons !-it is disgusting, and we must tak e "Oh, I wasn't speaking for myself, but for the other some measures to have revenge, Lieutenant Sharpley!" fellows!" said Sam "I knew there wasn't any danger \ of Dick falling in love with such a homely girl as you are." Smack! Molly's hand struck Sam on the cheek. "That is what I want-revenge!" almost hissed the lieu tenant; "and I have come, sir, to ask permission to take a party and return to that neighborhood and punish the "Take that for your impudence!" she cried. '(You've young scoundrels as they deserve


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 11 'You have my permission to do so, lietftenant," said I Arnold; "buJ your arm-the wound will preventyou from going, will it not?" "No!" fiercely. "It isn't dang e rous, and I should suiTm worse if forced Lo remain behind than if allowed to go.'' . "True; doubtless you are right. Well, you may go. How many men wi_ll you need?" "I don't s uppose I shall need a score, but to make assur ance doubly s ure I think shall take a hundr ed.'' ''Ycry good; a hundred it is. Go, and make a good job of it, lieutenant. Scorch the rebels thoroughly." "I'll do that!;' viciously. "I understand it is a Whig neighborhood, and I will burn the house of every rebel in that part of lhe country, and kill a few of tho e young ocoundrels to gei even for this arp1 of mine." "That's the talk! W e ll, I shall expect a good report when you return.'' "You'll hear a good report, too, never fear Lieutenant Sharpley went forth from the headquarters of A mold well plea sed. "I'll make those impudent young sc:oundrels ish they behaYerl themselves!" he mut tered. "No" to get my men, and away. I want to get back into the vicinity of i.he Whig settlement by to-morrow afternoon and then begin work as soon as it becomes night.'' r He had no trouble in securing the number of men he wished. Indeed, he could have secured five times that number without difliculty. When this had been finished, and the men had made the necessary arrangement s for the journey, they ate and mounting rode away at a gallop. They rode steadily till midnight, and then went into "From the young men of the "Oh, from the young men of the., settlement, eh.?" i a a sneering tone. It was evident the lieutenant war> not much impres sed. "Yes; they ha\ e banded themselves together and are go ing to fight you. 'rhey call themselves 'The Boy Defend-crs.' "Oho! 'The Boy Defender s,' eh? Do you hear that, men? We are to have a fight-ha, ha, hal" and the lieu tenant laughed loudly, the men following suit. "I don't think you will find it anything to laugh about, 1>ir," ventured Joe Hooker. "There are more than a hun dred of the Boys, and they are all well armed and will :fight. They were drilling in the field close to Mr. Hardy's when I left there two hours ago." The lieutenant looked surprised. "Drilling, you say? Wh y, who is there in the settle ment who know s anything about militar y tactics?'' "Why, there is a young fellow there by the name of Dick Slater lie is from the J and has a big reputa tion as a scout, s py and a fighter He is the captain of a company of youths known as 'The Liberty Boy s of ''76.' He organized this company of 'Boy DefendeJ;S,' and is drilling them." An exclamation escaped the lips of Lieutenant Sharpley. "I've heaPd of the fellow!" he exclaimed. "So have I," remarked one of hi, men: "And I from still another. "They say he is a regular dare devil, a fiend in battle, and the most s uccessful and famous scout and spy in the rebel army." l "I understand that there is a standing reward of five camp. hundred pounds offered for hin capture," said another of They were up and away early next morning, and by the soldiers. four o'clock in the afternoon were within five miles of Mr. "In that case," said Lieutenant Sharpley, "we mu st try Hardy's home. to capture him and secure the reward. If we C'ln do that, The' were riding along at a good gait, when a youth and kill fifty or seventy-five of those boy s, and burn down of about eighteen leaped forth from the timber at the all the 1lomes o.f the Whigs, we will be doing a good st roke of the road and motioned for them to stop. Lieutenant Sharpley reined up his horse in front of the youth, and eyeing him sternly, said: ""W'ho are you, sir, and what do you want?" of work." "It's not going to be such an easy thing, though, lieu tenant," remarked one of the men. "If half we have heard about this Dick Slater is true, he will be a hard one to "My name is Joe _Hooker, sir, and I have come to warn capture, and we may have quite a fight on our hands when you." The lieutenant looked surprised. "To warn me?" he exclaimed. "Yes.'' "Of what?" "Of danger.'' "Of danger--from what source?" we tackle those youths.'' "Bah! A pack of boys. Dick Slater himself may be a great fighter, but that won't make warriors of those young s ters; one charge will scatter them to the four winds "Don't be too sure of that, sir," said Joe Hooker. "The boys are not cowards, by any means, and they are all good marksmen."


12 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. "That's all right, my_ boy," said the lieutenant, patron izingly. ''I am much obliged to you for the information you have brought me. l suppose you live in the settle ment." "Yes, sir." "All right; hang a white rag out of one of th.e upstairs "Keep a sharp lookout for the redcoats," he said, ''and at the fir s t sign of their approach bring in the news." The youths said they would, and ha s tened away, eager to do th e fir s t work to which they had been assigned by their famous young commander. Dick expected to hear s ome word of the approach of the windows of your house when you go back home, and we enemy some time that afternoon, and he was not disapwill not burn your house down." pointed. "Oh, thank you, sir." 1 About half-past four o'clock one of the youths who had "That's all right; you may go-but hold! How long been sent out as a scout came galloping in with the new!' has this fellow, Dick Slater, been in the settlement?" that the r e d c oat s were coming. "Since night before last. He was passing along the road and stopped in at the dance at Mr. Hardy's, and then when you. said that you wohld be back with a large force and burn the home s of all the Whigs in the neighborhood, he decided to remain and get up this company and fight you when you came." "Great guns!" exclaimed the lieutenant. "Wa he at the dance the other night?" "Yes; he is the fellow who shot you in the arm.'' A curse escaped the lips of Lieutenant Sharpley. "How many of them are there?" asked "About a hundred, I should say." "How far away arl:l they?" "About a mile and a half." "We must move quickly, then," said Dick. "There is a splendid place for an ambush down the road about half a mile; we mus t get there as quickly as possible." The youths set out on the doubl e -quick, and were soo:n at the point spoken of by Dick. This was at a bend in the road where it led through a strip of timber. "So that was Dick Slater, eh ?" he exclaimed. "Goorl! Dick divided his force into tw'O lines, one being about I'm glad of it! I can get revenge on him by capturing him five feet in front of the other. and secure the five hundred pounds at the same time. Boy, "We will not all fire at once," he said; "but the front I am indeed much obliged to you for the information.:' line will fire first, and then the other line; in that way we "T.\lat's all right, sir; I'll hang out the white rag when .I will be able to fire double the number of volleys, and will get home, as you told me to do.'' not be EO apt to get caught with empty weapons." "Do so, and your house shall not be burned." The youths thought this was a good ida, and said that The boy stepped aside an,d disappeared in the timber. they would obey Dick's commands implicitly. "Forward!" shouted: Lieutenant Sharpley. "Forward, ('There is one thing I wish to impre s s upon your minds," and we will quickly teach the 'Boy Defenders,' as they said the youth; "and that is this: Take good aim before call themselves, a lesson that they will not forget in a fire; don t fire haphazard; you are all good shots, and hurry!" ought to be able to hit a man at a dis tance of tw1:mty yards The party of redcoats dashed on up the road at a gallop. without any difficulty; take aim as coolly as if you were shooting at a turkey, and then when you fire you will do ., CHAPTER VI. "THE BOY DEFE::iDERS', FIRST VICTORY. good execution. Don't hesitate or be squeamish; the men we are waiting for are enemies of our country, ffhd ar< coming with the avowed intention of burning your homes; don't forget this." The youths said that they would not forget it. "We'll take good aim, Dick," they declared, "and we Meantime, Dick Slater had not been idle. In accord-will shoot to kill.'' ance with his order the boys congregated in the field near "That is right; you may be sure that if the redcoats get Mr. Hardy's at eight o'clock next morning, and they drilled a chance to kill any of us they will do. it." steadily from that time till noon. There was no more talk now, for the enemy might put All had brought food with them, and they ate their din-in an appearance at any moment. All remained motionless ner in Mr. Hardy's large front room, Mabel and her supplying them with hot coffee. other and await e d the coming of the British. They did not have long to wait. Not more than five Soon after dinner Dick se.nt out a dozen of the boys to minutes had elapsed when around the bend in the road do scout work. the party of redcoats.


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 13 They were strung out a distance of a hundred yards or "I think it will be a good plan to have a wounded redmore, and Dick waited till twenty or thirty had passed the coat in you r said Dick; "then, if the Britis h point where he was concealed Then he gave the signal should send a strong enough force here so that we boys for the youths to take aim. could not handle it they would not dare your houses Instantly up came the muskets to the shoulders of "The fo; fear of burning their own men." l1oy Defenders." The patriots said this was well thought of, and one of Dick waited just long enough for the boys to take aim, the wounded men was left at Mr. Hardy's, after which and then in a loud voice cried: the wagon was started on the rounds, four of the boys 'Boy Defenders,' :fire!" accompanying the driver, and a wounded man was left at The fifty youths fired almost as one, and the result prov the home of each of the patriots, as the house was reached. eel: that they had taken good aim before they fired, .for at The news of the wonderful victory of the "Boy De least a score of the redcoats went down, while a number fenders" over the party of redcoats traveled on the wings of horses were killed and wounded. of the wind, as it were It was known far and wide very The scene which followed baffies description. quickly; and a great crowd came to Mr. Hardy's, where The stroke had come upon the British like a thunder the boys had their headquarters, to congratulate them. bol t from a clear sky. They had not been looking for anything of this kind. Dick was praised to the skies for his shrewdness and care fulness in handling the boys, and not letting them be Yells, groans, shrieks and curses went up. The horses C:'Xposed to the fire of the British soldiers. kicked, reared and plunged. Lieutenant Sharpley yelled Joe Hooker, who had taken a roundabout way to get for his men to charge the "rebels," and then all of a sudhome, after meeting and warning Lieutenant Sharpley, den came again the sharp command from the roadside: did not learn of the result of the encounter-or, indeed, 'Boy Defenders,' fuel" that any encounter had taken place--until he a:rrived at The second line of "Boy Defenders" fired a volley his home. Then he was informed of the great victory of F i fty muskets and rifles belched forth their leaden messen the "Boy Defenders," and hardly knew what to thi nk. gers, with almost as terrible \ results as had followed the "I wouldn t have believed it possible that the bO>ys firing of the first volley. It was more than flesh and blood could have whipped the British!" he exclaimed. "Jove, could stand, and with yells of fear the readcoats who had I can't understand it!" escaped injury, or were only slightly wounded, fled from "'rhat young fellow from the North, Dick S l ater, was the spot with all possible speed, Lieutenant Sharpley being the cause of it all," said Joe's father, bitterly; "they say r-mong the ones who had escaped. he is one of the shrewdest fellows that ever lived, and A cheer went up from the "Boy Defenders," and, leapthat he knows more about war and military tactics than ing out from cover, they fired a volley from their pistols nille out of ten 1@f the old generals." which had the effect of still further accelerating the speed "I guess you're right about that, father," replied Joe; of the redcoats. 'some of the redcoats said that Dick Slater was so danger The youths congratulated one another on their success in routing the redcoats and then Dick sent a couple of the boys around the bend to keep watch on the enemy and give the alarm in case they should start to return. Then he and his comrades to learn the full extent of the damage they had inflicted upon the enemy They found that they had killed twenty-two outright, and that fourteen were wounded more or less seriously. Dick sent a couple of the boys back to Mr. Hardy's to get spades and a team, and carry the good news of the victory. The two returned within the hour and the dead redcoats were buried, after which the wounded men were lifted into J the wagon. Dick decided to distribute the wounded soldiers around at the different homes of the patriots, and they were quite willing when he asked some of them about it. ous that the British commander-in-chief has a standing offer of :five hundred pounds reward for his capture." "Indeed!" exclaimed Mr. Hooker; "that is a sum of money." There was a peculiar light in the man's eyes and he I seemed thoughtful for quite a while and then he call e d Joe to one side and told him to go over to the home of I r.nother 'l'ory, two miles distant, and bring the of i;he house, one Dave Bloggs, back with h im. Joe .hastened away and in a little more than a n hou r returned, accompanied by the man in question. Supper was on the table and Bloggs sat down and ate supp er with the Hooker family. During the course of the meal Mr. explained why he had sent for his brother Tory. "l have a scheme, Dave," he said, "and one which, if carried to a successful conclusion, will be considera ble


I* .. ... H THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. money in our pockets. How would you like to get hold of not dare say a word to that effect in th hearing of h two hundred and :fifty pounds of British gold?" parents, she was delighted over the victory of "The B< The eyes of Dave Bloggs sparkled covetously. Defenders" over the red'coats, and now she was horrifi< ''How would I like it?" he. remarked. "I would like it to think that her father was gf,/ing to become engaged fine, I tell you! But is there any chance of such a thing an attempt to capture Dick Slater, whom she, in comm< takimg place?" with all the other girls of the settlement, admired great! "Yes; if you have the nerve for a little piece of dangerTom Wil so; had praised Dick to the skies and she knc ous work." it would be a terrible blow to all the boys should h "It would have to be pretty dangerous to frighten me father and Dave Bloggs succeed in capturing him. off, if there is two hundred and :fifty pounds of gold in it," Daisy was sorely troubled and got away from the suppe was the grim reply "But what is your scheme, anyway?" table a quickly as possible, for fear the others might s ''I'll tell you: You have heard of this young f-ellow, that something was wrong. Dick Slater, who has been drilling the boys and who led What should she do? she asked herself. Should she r them against the king's soldiers to-day, of course main quietly at home and permit her father and Da ''Yes, yes; that was a bad piece of business to-day, Bloggs to make a success of their plot? aturally, it w Hooker; just to think that those boys killed and wounded a hard question to answer, for, althougb he was a Tor thirty-six British s oldiers." Tom Hooker was a kind husband and :father, and the gi "Yes, it is bad, Dave. Well, that fellow, Dick Slater, I feared that i:f she revealed the plot. to Dick Slater 1s, I have learned to-day, worth five hundred pounds to .. The Boy Defenders," her father m 1 ght get mto seno the commander-in-chief of the British army; in other trouble. word s he has placed that sum on the youth's head and will pay the amount to any one who will deliver the youth into his hands a prisoner." "Aha!" exclaimed Bloggs rubbing his hands; "I think "I must go and tell them, though," she s aid, determine ly; "Tom would be very angry if he should learn that knew of the plot and did not tell of the faot, and th it would be terrible if Dick Slater should be captured, f I understand your scheme. It is to capture him and take without him to command them they would not know wh him to the commander-in-chief and secure the reward." to do, and the British would come and burn the home ''-That is it, exactly, Dave; and I sent for you to ask if every patriot in the settlement, after all. Yes, I will you would go in with me. If you do, and we succeed, d 1 th 1 t tl h t t f th . an revea e p o even 1oug 1 ge s my a er m 1t Will J;D.ean two hundred and fifty pounds for each of us, bl T .11 I d'd ht c1 d I tl ,,,.,, I trou e om w1 say 1 ng m omg s o an 111 an

THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. lfi there! little sweetheart; don't cry!" said Tom, 1'Then I shall have to be on my guard and keep my othingly. "'ren me all about it." eyes open." The girl then did 80, with many stop and much hesi'ta"That is what you will to do," agreed Tom; "and n, and 1rhen she had finished the youth gave her a hug now, Daisy, you had better go back home, as they might kiss, and cried: miss you and become suspicious . I'll walR over pretty 'Daisy, you are the bravest, the best and the sweetest near to the hot1se with you." l that. ever lived!" "Very well; ancl now good-by, Mr. Slater; you won't \ little cry of pleasure escaped the girl. forget-about-father?" D-do you really t-think ?"she asked, stammeringly. "Irideed I will not, Daisy. Have no fears; your Do 1 think so? 1 know so, my little darling! Why, father sha ll not suffer. Good-by, and thank you!;' t to think that you have come here and told this when Tom and Daisy set out and Dick went to the boys ur own father is the main person implicated in the were cncfqnped and told them that a plot was on foot to t to capture Dick! Only a heroine would have acted capture him. you have!" "I wish to capture : Mr. Hooker and his companion," he I'm so glad you think I c1 id right, Tom." said, in conclusion "1 am going to give them a good scare, Oh, tl cre is absolutely no doubt regarding that, Daisy. and thoroughly discourage them from making any such course you did right. But for your having told us of attempts the future. Of course, I would not injure plot it might haYe succeeded and that would have meant Daisy's father for the world, but it will be no harm to give him a scare." t we 'Boy Defenders' would have lot our commander, not knowing anything of the art or strategy of war The youths thought as Dick did with regard to the should haYe been no match for the soldiers of King matter, and told him to tell them 'what he wished to do. orge, aud they would have succeeded in burning our they said they would do." 'That would have been dreadful, Tom!" , o it would, Daisy; but wait here till I go and call k. He will know just what to do." f 'Oh, Tom, ask Dick if he will be easy on father, won't ''I want you to send a dozen of your number to keep watch on the house I think they will try to decoy me out of the house and away to some place where they will feel safe in leaping upon me and making a prisoner of me." "Probably they will send Joe to decoy you out of the house and away," suggested Sam Bostwick. "Quite likely; well, if he comes, I shall go along with ? I should feel so bad if any harm should come to him, just as if I suspected nothing, and you boy must I think he believes he is doing right-or at least n follow and then when we get to where the men are you t he is not doing wrong." I'll bring Dick here and you ask him your,elf, Daisy. m sure that after you have done what you have he not be in for harming your father." 'om hastened away and returned in a few minutes, ac panied by Dick Slater. The youth greeted Daisy pleas 'y, and then said, gently: must appear and capture them." "All right," replied Sam ; "we'll be there." "And bring a good, stout" rope, Sam." "All right." Dick then returned to the house, feeling very well sati:s fled with the way things had 3"one, so far. Some of his scouts tad come in just afte1: dark and reported that the Tom has told me why you are here, Daisy. I am very, party of redcoats had gone into camp at a point five miles 1 much obliged to you for bringing m\=l the information to the eastward from Mr. Hardy's, and that, judging from he plot to capture me, and I assure you that if I can nppearances, they had no intention of making another atii-and I am sure that I can-no harm sha ll come tack. One of the scouts said that a single horseman had rour father as a result." ridden away, toward the southeast} and Dick shrewdly thank thank you!" cried Daisy. "l'm so ld d h h that he was a messenger to Arno an t at e !" was going after reinforcements. It would be two days It is I who should thank you, Daisy, and I do thank at least before the reinforcements could get there, how. Then he asked: "You nothing of the details ever, and this :voulcl give the "Boy Defenders" time to he plot-how they intended to try to work it to capget in shape to repel them when they did come. me?" Dick was even thinking of taking the offensive and going No; they did not have any plans foriQulated. They said out and attacking the enemy, and he felt that they would 1 would lea1e the matter to cir.e.ums.tances"


16 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. matter from his mind for the present, however, and going Rooker and comrade, you are going to get yourselves in to the house, entered, determined to await the working of trouble!" the plot to entrap him. Instead of turning up the road, Joe led the way aero He told Mr. Hardy's folks about it, and they were very it and leaped over the fence at the farther side. indignant. "1 thought you said you wished me to go up the ro: "The idea of Hooker going into such an affair as that!" with you, Joe?" said Dick. said Mr. Hardy, angrily; "he ought to J:re tarred and feath"I meant across the road. There is a man right ov ered and ridden out of the neighborhood on the sharp here in the edge of the timber who is waiting for you edge of a rail!" "Who is he ?" "I don't know; he said he had some information f you and se!lt me after you, that's all I know about it." "What a cheerful liar you are!" thought Dick, and : made up his mind to give Joe a little taste of trouble ah It was quite dark Dick could just make out t : flitting forms of the dozen "Boy Defenders" who_ we following them. Joe, being unsuspicious of the tb "What will you do to the two .rascally Tories when you they \fere being followed, never even thought of looki1 "It would serve him right," agreed Mrs. Hardy; "but I should be for his wife and Daisy." "Oh, wasn't it just splendid of Daisy to come and tell you of the plot!" exclaimed Mabel. "Indeed it was, Mabel," agreed Dick; "she is a noble hearted girl." get hold of them?" inquired Mr. Hardy. "I don't know,exactly; but I am going to give them a good scare in some way." "Good! I'm glad you are!" cried Mabel. An hour passed, and then there came a knock on the front door. Mr. Hardy opened the door and Joe Hooker stood there. behind him. His mind was on what lay ahead of them. The timber was only about seventy-five yards dist and they soon reached it. Dick paused and hesitated. did this for the purpose of seeing what Joe would do. "Where is the person you spoke of?" he asked. "He's back in the timber here, a little ways; co along." "Good evening; come in, Joe, said Mr. Hardy, though J oe strode onward and Dick followed. A glance o there was not much cordiality in his tones. his shoulder showed him that his comrades were cl "No, thank you, I haven't time," was reply; "I at band, but for that matter Dick would not have b wish to speak to Mr. Slater." afraid to go with Joe had his friends not been th Mrs. Hardy and Mabel exchanged meaning looks, and Dick got up and went to the door. "You wish to speak to me?" he asked. "Yes." "What is it you wish to say?" "I wish to speak to yon in "Oh, in private, eh ?" "Yes; I have some information for you." "Why not tell ,me here? I have no secrets folks." His enemies numbered only two men and a boy and had overcome greater odds than that, many a time. A dozen steps forward brought the mout into a liiJ opening among the trees. There was a sudden rush footsteps and two men l eaped forward and seized Dick. "Aha! you are our prisoner, Dick Slater!" cried one. Then there was another rush of footsteps and Die assailants and Joe Hooker, as well, were seized and m from the prisoners in a twinkling. It was done so quickly thatt] did not have time to offer resistance. "There are reasons which I cannot give, why I should "Aha! now Y

THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 1idden behind the clouds; suddenly came into view and loaded the little opening in the forest with its mellow i.ght. su re, but the probabilities are that if you make a clean breast of it I won't hang your father." "All right, I'll tell." Then Joe did so, detailing how The features of the prisoners could be seen quite plainly he had met the British force under Lieutenant Sharpley, md the "Boy Defenders" who had been posted by Dick, that afternoon, and had heard one of the redcoats say 1ttered exclamations of pretended amazement. "Why, it's Mr. Hooker!" "And Dave Bloggs !" "I'm surprised "So am I!" that there was a reward of five hundred pounds offered for Dick's capture. "I told fath er," said Joe, in conclusion, "and then he conceived the plan of capturing you in order to secure the reward." "And he sent -for me and persuaded me to go into 1t "What does it mean?" with him," saM Dave Bloggs; "I didn't want to, but he "I think I know what it means!'.; said Dick, sternly. finally persuaded me." ''l'hese men are Tories, are they not?" "Yes, they are," replied Sam Bostwick; "but I don t 'ee why they should wish to capture you." "What a liar you are, Dave Bloggs !" said Mr. Htioker, in disgust. "You wer-e glad of the chance to go into it with me, and you know it!" "Neither do I," said Dick ; "but I'm going to find out why they wished to do it. One of you boys run back to "Of course he was," said Joe; "you're just trying to get off easy, Dav-e Bloggs." the house and get a rope "Well, he's not going to get off any easier than you two,'' The youths had left the rope at the fence and one. of said Dick, sternly; "you're all in the same bout." t heir number hastened to go and get it. He was back in "But surely you will not hang us!" said Mr Hooker. L few minutes, and Dick quickly made a running noose tn one end of the rope and placed it around Mr. Hooker's "I will not, on one condition,". r eplied Dick. "What is the condition?" neck. He threw the other end over a convenient limb and "'l'hat each one of you take the oath of allegiance t hree or four of the ''Boy Defenders" seized hold of it. to the great cause of Liberty, at the s ame time renouncing "Now," said Dick, sternly, "tell why you tried to capallegiance to the tyrant, King George." ture ine, or up' you go!" "That's the talk, Dick!" cried Sam Bos twick. "We . I Mr. Hooker was badly frightened. So was his son, have the three traitors here at our mercy and we can just ' Joe, who began to beg and plead for his father's life. as well as not put thenl out of the and make sure "Don't hang him, boys!" he said, in a trembling voice. t}+at they will never again do anything to injure the cause "Surely you wouldn't do such a thing; it would be murof Liberty. The least that they can do, therefore; is to der !" renounce allegiance to the king all:d take the oath of "Shut up !'' crie d Dick, with assumed harshness. "It'll allegiance to the cause of Liberty." be turn next!" and then Dick turned toward Mr. "That is the way : I look at it,'' said Dick; "and they Hooker. have got to do that very thing or we will hang them to this ."Are you going to tell me why you wished to make a tree!" I prisoner of me?" he asked. "You better tell and Dick spoke in such-a grim and determined tone that the quickly, too, if you don't want to hang!" had no doubt that he meant what he said. The Dick was a good ador, and neither of the three prisoners result was that it did not take them lorig to make up their doubted for a moment that he mean what he said. minds. "I-l'll tell," stammered the Tory; "we w-wished to "We will take the oath," said Mr. Hooker, hastily; "or, m-make you a p-prisoner so as to secure the reward offerat l east, Joe and I will." ed _for y-your capture." "So will I!" Dave Bloggs hastened to say. It was evi" Oh, that is it, eh ?" dent that hewas an arrant -coward. "Y-yes." "The next time you go into anything, Mr. Hooker," "How did you know there was a reward offered for my said Dick, quietly, "you had better choose a braver man capture?" for an associate; your friend Bloggs is, I think; about "I'll tell!" cried Joe. "If you won't hang father I'll the biggest coward I ever saw." tell everything." "You're right about that, Dick," said Sam Bostwick; " t 1 r " > 1.


18 THE L1DBR'rY BOYs S'PRATEGY: ======:=, ====-I think he will kccp 'his oath of allegianc-e. ju!'t about ''They had juRi broken camp," was the reply, ''and wer long as it takes him to make it." ready to start." "If he goes uack on it and becomes _a Tory again, and ,\t this moment another scoui. came galloping up, and I ever get a chance at him, I will kill. him with a::; little reported that the redcoat were coming, but were at lea!' compunction as though he were a mad dog!" three miles away.' He had ridden h:i.s horse at top speed Dick's tone so grim, stern and cold withal, that while the enemy were comi'ng at a moderate pace. Dave B l oggs shuddered and h_astened to say: Dick pondered a few minutes. He was a born strate"No, no; I'll be true I'll keep my swear; I'll never be a 'rory again, b u t will remain a patriot as long as I live!" "And if you don't. remain a patriot, _,ou won't live long!" said Dick. Then he made each of the three hold up tt1eir right hand and repeat the oath of allegianae after him as be / said it over. When this bad been d one the rope was taken from gist, and he 1-vas turning over various plans in his mind for getting the better of the redcoats without incurring loss of life in his own force. He was not afraid but that his "Boy 'tefenders could whip the Britit>h, but he did not wish to lose a single life, if he could poRsibly a;-oid it. He knew that the parents of the boys had implicit faith in him, and he knew, too, that there \Y'Crc one hundred innocent, loving girls who would suffer terribly if any of the youths were to be killed. He did not wish to cause a single one of around Mr. Hooker's neck, the arms of the three were unthe maidens sorrow by having them lose a sweetheart. bound and they were told that they were free to go. SQ he pondered the situation, and presently evolved a "But remember," said Dick, as the three started away, plan which a a stroke of strategy was wo_rthy of going "a watch will be kept on you, and at the first sign of upon the of history. His plan was to have his boy" treachery you will be shot without ceremony. Remember mount horse and ride around and get in the rear of th this and beware!" approaching body of redcoats, then they would coine for '

THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 19 while it was light enough so that large bodies could be hrenty minutes later were at Hardy's. They found a dimly seen at a short distance, it was not light so that the color of clothing, or the lack of uniforms could be half a mil e had been traversed, a. dark body was seen in front, and the "Boy Defenders" were close upon this dark body. At this instant came a hail: "Hello, there! Who are you?" "Friends!" called out Dick, in a disguised voice. crowd uf neighbors there, waiting in fear aml the return oi the boys, and when learned that the boyt> had whipped the redcoats, and had fiot received so muc;h as a scratch in return, their joy knew no bounds They cheered wildly, and yo ted Dick Slater the com" mander and of ihe war. Three cheers were g ircn :for him. Molly Lucy Whitcomb and a score of i.he girls Reinforcement!> have come!'' was the answerof the vicinity were the1:e, and they gave their ing cry "Now 1re will give those young scoundre l s a such a greeting as was very pleasing to them. Daisy llooktrouncing they won't forget in a hurry!" er was there to kiss and mile upon Tom Wilson, anSJ. "Yes-maybe you will!" cried Dick, and then in a when she had her sweetheart she went ancl ad Eharp voice he cried: dressed Dick. 'Boy Defenders,' fire!" "What did you do io father?" she asked, m an Crash-roar! rang out a hundred musket shots, and wild "He says he is a patriot now, and he did not objce:t to Jnieks and yells went up from the

20 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. we will be in for it, for the \vill then be down they showed considerable improvement. "You are doing upon us in f?rce, or I miss my guess." splendidly," the youth declared. "If I had you for a ''What will you do then, Dick?" asked Sam, while a month you would be able to go through all the maneuvers number who were near looked at the youth eagerly-the !Prls and women anxiously as well. "I hardly !mow yet, as regards the details," replied Dick. "We will fight them to the last ditch, however. We will not let them have their own way, and come in here and burn our houses down with impunity." This statement was greeted with a cheer. Evidently these good people thought that Dick Slater was all right. And in they were right. ""' "1'here is one thing that I ain hoping for," went on Dick, "and that is that my 'Liberty Boys' may reach here before the reinforcements for the British can do so. If they get here we will put up such a fight as will make the redcoats wish they had stayed away!" This intelligence-:-that Dick was expecting his "Liberty Boys"-was very pleasing to all, and especially to the parwith the best of the old veterans." This pleased the boys, and they made up their minds to become soldiers, if such a thing..,Jere possible. Many of them were thinking of joining the Liberty Boys," if Dick would permit them to do so. Scouts came in at intervals, reporting that the redcoats were remaining quietly in camp, and were not moving abroad at all. "I guess they have had enough of trying to get at us," said one. This was undoubtedly the case, and there was no dan ger that they would try another attack until after the re inforcements arrived. After supper that night Dick and the "Boy Defenders," having loaded a dozen axes and saws into a wagon, made their way to a bridge which crossed a stream at a point about two miies from Mr. Hardy's. As soon as they reachents of the "Boy Defenders," who were beginning to fear ed there Dick sent out scouts with instructions to see the that their son s would soon be butchered by the British. advanced scouts and learn whether or no t the redcoats were The reputation of the "Liberty Boys" was such that all still in their camp. The scouts returned in about an hour felt that if theygot there in time the redcoats would have with the report that the enemy were in camp, and that hard work making muGh lfnless they came in everything wa.s quiet. overwhelming -force, which was not probable. The youths escorted their girls to their homes, and then returning went to sleep, rolled up in blankets beside camp "Good!" exclaimed Dick. "Now we will get to work." "What are you going to do, Dick?" asked Sam. "We are going to cut all the supports of the bridge save fires in Mr. Hardy's timber lot, just bac,k of the stable. two-one on each side, Sam-so that when we wish to Dick, Sam and a few more of the boys in the house. tiO we can drop the bridge into the water." Next morning a scout came in, and reported that the : "Aha! I understand. That is some more strategy, isn't redcoats had returned to their old camping spot, and we it?" encamped there, waiting for the coming the reinforce-! "I suppose you might call it that; it will be mighty uncomfortable for the enemy, anyway. if we can m1ake a many did we kill last night, do you think?" success of letting the structure down into the water wheb asked Dick. "Were you close enough to see whether many it is filled with redcoats." were missing or not?" "I was pretty close, and it looked-to me as if there were a good. many missing." "I guess you are right, old man!.'' The idea was a pleasing one to the "Boy Defenders," and th'ey set to work with a will to do the work Dick Dick nodded. ."I shouldn't wonder," he said. think we and wounded quite a number." "I wished done. He gave orders and bossed the job, and after After breakfast Dick selected four of the boys, and sent them away, with instructions to keep a sharp lookout for a party of one hundred horsemen, which would be coming from the north. "When you get eyes on them, head them off, and bring the!ll here," he instn15!ted. "Ask for Bob Bstabrook-he is in command in my absence-and tell him that I am and need them badLy." The youths said they would, and rode away eager to a couple of hours' work the thing was done. Then they loaded the tools into the wagon, and went back to their camp at Mr. Hardy's, feeling well satisfied. \ CHAPTER IX. BLOGGS IN get sight of the famous "Liberty l;3oys." To say that Lieutenant Sharpley was disgusted when Dick put in the day drilling the "Boy Defenders,') and his men were routed, the afternoon when they first made


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 21 \ttempt to reach the Whig settlement, is putting it lieutenant, and it was evident that if they got a chance at lly He was wild with rage. tbe "Boy Defenders" it would go hard with youths [e ordered his force to retire to a point :five miles from As we have s e en, they did make the attempt, but were settlement, and here it went into camp. Many' of out-generaled by Di c k Slater, and routed a second time . men were wounded, and when he took count of those The youth's strategy was too much for them . 1 were missing and found that he had lost thirty-six, I wrdly knew what to think. was a terrible blow, and the officer could hardly be e, at :first, that such a blow had been struck by a "gang wys," as he had derisively termed them. But he had that the boys could strike, and strike hard, right him. he lieutenant was a stubborn fellow, however. He was he more determined to do what he had set out to do. [ will yet burn the home of every Whig in that settle lt, or I wi. ll die trying!" he declared, grimly; "and They returned to their encampment minus a number of men, after :first returning (in --accordance with Dick Slater's words to the lieutenant to "come back and look after his dead and wounded") and burying the dead, and carrying the wounded away. If the lieutenant had been angry before, he was doubly so now. He raged like a wild man and threatened the most terrible things when he should get a chance at those "young scoundrels." "Those young fellows are dangerous chaps to fool with/' said one of the men ; "I guess it won't pay us to try to t is more, I will never rest till I have killed a suffi-go for them again lmtil after the reinforcements come." t number of those young scoundrels to give me revenge the brave boys who went down to-day!" "No; there are too many of them," was the lieutenant's sulky reply; "there must be four or :five hundred of them Which proves tha t the lieutenant was bad in mathematics. Still the redcoats were J?Ot to be blamed for thinking they had peen outnumbered, for they had been put tc;> flight so easily that they supposed there be a very large [ know; and I am going to send a messenger to Arnold nee, asking that three hundred men be sent me. I force of the enemy. We will have to have more men, then, lieutenant," one of the men; "those boys are demons, and they e Dick Slater to tell them what to do, you know." The British, now reduced to scarcely more than half crush the life out of Dick Slater and his gang of the number which had come to the place, remained in Defenders,' as sure as m_y name is Sharpley!" .e at once despatched a messenger, who rode away at tllop. He had instructions to kill his horse, if necesbut to get to his destination at the earliest possible ent, anyway. hen he comes back with the three hundred men we Tide into the settlement and burn every rebel house and t every man or boy who looks crosswise at us!" the tenant cried. What is to hinder us from slipping into the settlement 1.ght and getting in some of our work?" asked one of a painful, though not serious wound, was eager to get revenge on the youths who had cted it. camp the rest of that night and next day Along about three o'clock in the afternoon a prisoner was brought into the camp by a couple of scouts He was taKen before Lieutenant Sharpley, who looked at the fellow sternly and asked: 11What is your name?" "Bloggs," was the reply. "Bloggs, eh ?" "Yes; Dave Bloggs." "Well, Dave Bloggs, what were you doing spying around our camp?" "I wasn't spying around your camp, sir," Bloggs ha st ened to say. "You were not?" the lieutenant's tone indicated that i e lieutenant thought there was nothing to hinder. he did not believe the statement of the worthy Bloggs. We will try it at any rate," he said; "and if we can a hard blow before the reinforcements get here, uch the better. Arnold will not blame me so much I what has already occurred." preparations were quietly tnade for the attempt was to be made to even up things with the defend the settlement. e soldiers were eager to make the attempt. They I smarting under the defeat almostas much as was the "No." "What were you doing, then?" "I was coming here to see you." "Coming here to see "Yes." "What for?" "I wanted to help you." "Help me?" "Yes." I


22 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. "In what way?" "I wanted to act as a guide to you so as to lead you into the settlement by a route they are not guarding, and then you could kill a lot of those 'Boy Defenders' and burn the houses of the Whigs." "Humph!" Lieutenant Sharpley eyed the man, searchingly It was evident that he was suspicious of Blogg s and was trying to decide whether or not he was telling the truth or lying in an attempt to get out of the hole in which "I wanted revenge," concluded Bloggs, "and why I am here." "Don' t believe a word of your story," said Sharpie: cui:tly; "take him away, boys, and later on we' ll have hanging bee Bloggs was almost paralyzed with terror and disa1 pointment, bu t recovered his faculties sufficiently to be and plead as he was being led away. It did him no gooc however, the men merely laughing and jeering at him. "Oh, you'll hang, all right!" was their comforting ru lw found himself. The soldiers who had gathered around surance; "the lieutenant is in a bad humor on account < t o hear what the prisoner had to say, looked at one another, ihe way we have been handled by those 'Boy Defender doubtfully. They, too, had doubts regarding the truthfuland he is rather glad to get hold of somebody to ne!"s sincerity of the worthy Mr. Bloggs. on. I wouldn t give two shillings for your chanc1 That individual fidgeted and s tood on first one leg and of getting away from here alive!" then the other, and was so pale and seemed so ill at case Just after noon next day a scout came in and reporte that there was ample reason why the redcoat s should oe to the lieutenant that a body of troops was approachillj suspicious and doubtful of him. Finally the lieutenant a'Dd the news caused great excitement and joy in t spoke. British camp. "So that is what you came here for, is it?" he asked. There was a tinge of sarcasm in his tones. "Yes, sir; that is what I came for, and if yonwill--" "But I won't!" interrupted the officer. "It's no use, Mr. Bloggs; your scheme won't work. You won't succeed in leading us into a and for once Dick Slater has over-reached himself." "'rhc reinforcements are coming! The reinforceme are coming I" was the cry. 4-nd this was the case. Three-quarters of an hour la the British soldiers, two hundred strong, rode into t camp, and they were greeted with wild cheers. "Now we'll teach those 'Boy Defenders' a thing or two was the cry. Lieutenant Sharpley would have been better pleased "What do you mean?" gasped Bloggs, turning paler still. Arnold had sent three hundred men instead of two h dred, but the messenger explained that two hund.xed "Just what I say as many as horses could be foun d for, and the lieuten "Y-you d-don't mean that y you think D-Dick Slater acknowledged that under the circumstances no more co sent m-me here?" have been sent "I do. rriean that very thing. I think you came here to "Oh, well, with two hundred and fifty men we will spy on u s with the understanding that if you were capable to whip those young scoundrels out of their boo tured you should pretend to want to lead us into the he said, grimly. "And we will get to work at it at 0 settlement, and then lead us into a trap instead. Oh, it Before sundown, this evening, we will have revenged won't work, friend Bloggs! And you arc in a.nice sna rl. selves for the lives of the British soldiers which have 1 I rather think that y ou will be chief performer at a lost, and a score of Whig homes shall be in flames-I sw hanging bee, and that before many hours have passed!" it!" "Oh, say; you are wrong about that, I swear you are!" But the "Boy Defenders" would have something to cri.ed Bloggs. "l'1n a loyal king's man, and I hate that about that. fellow, Dick Slater, and it was to square with him that I came here. Let me explain Sharpley hesitated and then said: "Well, go ahead and be quick about it." Bloggs obeyed, hn9, told the story of how he and Mr. Hooker and his son Joe hap tried to capture Dick Slater, in order to secure the reward and how they themselves had I been captured instead, and how they had been forced to t<1 ke the oath of allegiance to the patriot cause. CHAPTER X. THE "LIBERTY BOYS" APPEAR. Dick knew what was, going on in the British encamp almost as well as did the redcoats themselves. He


THE LIBERTY BOYS STRATEGY. 23 't a lo't of s couts and spies, anti the youths vied with e drrother in th eir e fforts to learn what the re doing. They kept Dick well posted by sending word him every hour or hvo during both day and night. Consequently the youth knew when the reinforcements ived at the British e ncampment and was informed as They bad gone not more than a third of a mile when one of the boy scout s leaped out in the road and motioned for them to stop. He has ten e d up to Dick and reported that the redcoats were coming . "How far away are they?" a s ked Dick. "Not more than half a mil e ." the numbers of the newcomers as well. ''Then we mu s t tak e to the woods at once, and turn'Two hundred and fifty of them, eh ?" be said to himing to his comrade s h e gave the ord e r. f. "Well, that is a good many, but I think we can make All ste pped a s ide into the timber, and then Dick gave so hot for them that they will be glad to give it up and them their instructions. away. If my brave 'Liberty Boys' would only put an appearance in time I know we co':ld thrash the coats soundly I hope they will get here." at once told the boys to get ready for work. "We are going to meet the enemy," be said, "and we st whip them as we have done twice before!" The youth s cheered wildly at thi s and said they would "We will wait till th e front of the column is almost to us," he said, "and then we will fire and retire back up th e road, but keeping just within the edge of the timber so they can't see us. When we have retreated a couple of hundred yards we will stop and wait till they come within range and then we will give them another volley and retire again. We will keep this up till w e are within a hundred yards of the bridge, when we will make a sudden to it that the enemy was whipped. dash and get across it. Of course, the redcoats will make ick warned them that it was going to be a more diffi-a dash to follow, and we will cut fue stringers and let a t task, this time, than it had been before. 'They have two hundred and fifty men," be said, hile we have only a little more than a hundred." "But by ambushing them and getting in a number of leys before they have a chance to fire upon us, we can n matter s up with them," said Sam Bostwick. "Isn't t so, Dick?" ''Ye s it will go a good way toward equalizing matters," owle dged the youth; "but come, let u s be going." The news that the British had received reinforcements d that the "Boy Defenders" were going to go out to lot of them down into the str e am and check their advance-for a while, at any rate." The youths li s tened intently, and told Dick they would follow his instruction s implicitly. They waited, eag e rly, and pre sently the redcoats came in sight around a bend in the road. They wer e on foot. Doubtless they thought they would stand a better chance that way. Dick shr e wdly gues sed that this was done s o that the men could charge into the timber in case they were attacked. "We will have to move lively after we have fired the t the enemy, had traveled on the winds and soon a volley, boys!" was the word be sent along the line. wd of the nearest neighbors was on hand to encourage Onward came the redcoat s and Dick waited till the head boys and wish them good luck. A number of the of the column was well within range, and then gave the Is were present, and they hugged and kissed their sweetorder to fire. rts and gave the m all the encouragement that lay in Instantly the volley rang out and more than a dozen 'r power. They were as brave as they were sweet, were of the enemy went down. It was not like shooting into e girl s and ther e was not a boy in the company who the ranks s idewise, at close range, and such deadly execu not strengthened in his resolve to fight to the last Lion could not be don e but roou g h had been done to throw if necessary, in defense of the girls and of their the rE'dcoats into confu s ion and di s order. Yell s and curses went up, and then a rush was mad e toward the spot whe r e t last the words was given, and the company of "Boy the volley bad bee n fired from. enders" marched away, down the road, followed by cheers of the parents, sisters and sweethearts. nward they marched, and half an hour later they "Give them a voll e y and the n the bayonet!" yell e d Lieutenant Sharpley, wild with rag e "Fire!" The redcoats fir e d a voll e y into the timber, but thanks hed the bridge acros s the stream. Dick had caused a to the promptne s s with which the "Bo y D e fenders" had le of axes to be brought along, and he placed them evacuated the spot, not a bullet came a n y where near the the end of the bridge where they could be seized youths. They were fifty y ard s furth e r on, and rtmning tly when needed. This done, he led the way across like deer. bridge and on the road. I Into t)le timber dashed the redcoat s with inu s kets held


24 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. ready to bayonet the enemy the in stan t they were within paid no attention 1 o it, for they did not hesitate a bit reach; but the minions of King George were to be sadly s lacken their speed, but rushed onto the bridge at f disappointed. There was no enemy there to be bayoneted. speed They were so eager to get at th1:1ir intended victi I 'rhey understood the move of their cunning enemy, how-that they did not even think to fire upon Dick, who st ever, or thought they did, and rushed back into the road there in full view, axe in hand, and faced them, unda and on up it. edly. ''We'll catch the scoundrels !"cried Lieutenant Sharpley; "'lfter them, men!" The redcoats gave utterance to wild cheers and dashed forward at top speed-to their death! For suddenly there came a volley from the edge of the timber and down went Lieutenant Sharpley was in the advance, and as redcoat leader reached the middle of the bridge Dick the stringer with a blow from the axe and down into water went bridge, officer and some of his men. Shrieks went up from their lips as they struck on a dozen or more of the redcoats This was too much, and rocks and in the water, and yells of rage and disappoi with wild yells the soldiers rushed forward, eager to avenge ment went up from those who had been on the point the deaths of their comrades. Again they fired a volley, stepping onto the bridge. They raised their muskets and again they did no damage--for the enemy had fled fire at the daring youth who had played such a cute tr with such speed that none of the bullets came anywhere on them, found no one to shoot at-Dick had dis ncar any of the youths. And, as before, the redcoats peared within the timber at the side of the road. found nothing to bayonet save the trees of the forest. To say that the British were angry and disgusted This was maddening, and they rushed out into the road the turn affairs had taken is putting it mildly. They m and down it at the top of their speed, Lieutenant Sharpley aged to fish the lieutenant out of the water, and the urging them on; with voice and waving sword. Although he had one arm in a sling, he seemed to be able to get -. over the ground with the best of them. Seventy-five yards they ran and then-crash! roar! They were greeted with another volley. jol'ity of the men who had fallen in with him succeeded getting out, but two or three were drowned, through h ing struck on rocks and being knocked senseless. The strea1n was not a very wide or deep one, but quite an obstruction from a military standpoint, and "Ten' thousand curses!" roared Sharpley, as soon as he ld b t bl k tt' t H wou e rou esome wor ge mg across 1 owe could make himself heard "Charge, me;n! Charge the. th ed t t h t h th t th . e r coa s were a sue a p1 c now a ey were scoundrels, and don t stop till you have pmned every .J. t 'f th h d t l th bl leril:)I,Ileu::' o cross 1 ey a o mmg e e1r own mother's son of them to the ground w1th your bayonets t" : .1.1--th t d th h W1tu e wa er an sw1m roug A wild yell went up from the redcoats and tbey.,rushed f d t t t tl tl f h -' bl Lieutenant Sharpley was nearly insane so great was orwar eager o ge a 1e au 1ors o t eu. trou e rage. To be handled thus by a band of boys was al As before, however, when they rushed into the timber, they found nobody there; the enemy had flown. This was the last stand the youths made on that side o'f the stream. Dick gave the to retreat to the s tr e am and dash across the bridge, and the youths obeyed. 'l'he redcoats caught sight of them just as they were crossiP. g, and came running at the top of their speed,. yelling lik e fiends Dick and Sam seized the axes and began chopping at th e two stringers, and soon had them so that a single blow would sever them. Indeed, Dick told Sam to cut his t:ntirely through, knowing that the one on his own side would hold the bridge up till the redcoats got onto it. Sam obeyed, and then reluctantly withdrew into the timber in accordance with Dick's further order. The other youths had already taken refuge there and were re loading their muskets and rifle s with all possible despatch. On came the redcoats, yelling like wild men, and if they had taken note of what Dick and Sam had been they too much for him to endure; but he was forced to n his wrath and his sore arm and wait till tlw stream co be crossed. The redcoats rushed along the bank of the stream, going up, some down, and presently there came a s from down stream a w,ays. I "They've found a place where the stream is fordab cried Sharpley. "Hurry, men; we must get across after those scoundrels before they can get clear away I He was to quickly learn that the "scoundrels" were trying to run away, however. When the soldiers trying to cross on a tree which had fallen across and a. narrow foot-bridge, they found that they were their in their hands, for the "Boy Defenders" on hand and fired with such coolness and precision aa 8 drop every man who started across. This speedily put a stop to the work of crossing a t point, and, more enraged than ever, the redcoats


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 25 D. down the bank of the stream, looking for a point where or three wounded. They were :fighting on the defensive, ley could cross in numbers. true, but had managed to get much the better of the fight, A quarter of a mile farther down they .found a place nevertheless. he: e the water was shallow, there being rapids for quite They loaded and fired as rapidly 'as they could, and kept ways, and they rushed across like madmen, making the 'B.ter fly at a great rate. The "Boy Defenders" had aoved quickly down the stream on the opposite side, anc\ fired two volleys right in the faces of the redcoats1 pping a dozen or more in the water, dead or wounded. The youths then retreated, loading as they went, a feat t took considerable skill, but one which they accomplish successfully. The redcoats followed as closely as possible, a nple of volleys, but did no damage other than to inflict few flesh wounds. Then a game of strategy, and Dick and his brave boys were much better woodsmen n their enemies, they easily got the better of the con -t and succeeded in to the main road and on retreating up the road. For a mile or more they had pur sued these tactics and had eluded the redcoats so repeatedly and so successfully that the latter were wild with rage and rushed into the timber and out again in great confusion. Dick gave the order .for the boys to retreat rapidly, and draw the redcoats as far up the road as possible, in order that the "Liberty Boys" might come in behind them give the enemy a surprise from the rear. The youth;; obeyed and moved up the road as rapidly as possible, keeping just within the edge of the timber so as to l::ic shielded from the bullets of the enemy. / The entire force of redcoats had passed the end of tile road leading clown from the when a body of horse men dashed out of it and attacked the British ftom the it in the direc'tion of the settlement, lo ading and firing _rear. Right into the m.idst of the redcoats rode the horse they went and bringing down a few redcoats almost men, firing right and ieft with their pistols and yelling ry time. The British kept pressing forward, however, and Dick ' gan to fear that he might have to meet them, face to ce, in a hand-to-hand combat. This he did not wish to as he knew that in such a contest many of the brave ys would inevitably fall, and he did not wish to have to rn. to the settlement arid report that a single one cif youths had lost his life If he could keep in the tim r and. not be forced to meet the redcoats in the open, might be successful in doing this, but otherwise he would 1 ''Oh if my brave Boys' would only come!" he ught. "Jove! how we would give it to those rascally coats We would make them wish they had stayed back d never come within fifty miles of this place!" As this ught came to him, Dick found they were opposite a d which entered the main road almost at right angles, ding down from the north, and far up this road he saw ely of horsemen. A cry escaped hiin-a cry of joy. "They come!" he cried. "The 'Liberty Boys' are com Hold out yet a few minutes longer, boys, and the ' coats will be given a surprise such as they are not ecting !" \ The "Boy Defend ers" were greatly encouraged, and kept the good work with renewed vim and energy. They w that when the famous "Liberty Boys" got there the ht would be more evenly balanced. So far as that concerned they had nothing to complain of. They killed and wounded seven_ty-five of the enemy, least, of the boys had been killed and only two anfl cheering like mad. "Down with the king! Long live Liberty!" was the cry, and the "Boy Defenders / took up the cry and re peated it, again and again. 1.1hey poured a galling fire into the front ranks of the British, and the "Liberty Boys" were giving it to the enemy from the rear. Thus caught between two fires the redcoats were into the wild est confusion, and became a_ mere disorganized mob. It was every fellow for himself, and their one object in life, seemingly, became that of getting into the timber and away as quickly as possible. They had never encountered: s uch fierce fighters as were the "Liberty Boys," and did not know what to do save to try to save their lives by fleeing. The greater number of those who were not wounded got away, but there were some who were unable to escape and they threw down their arms and surrende red. The battle was over and the lrrival of the "Liberty Boys" had quickly turned the scale in favor of the "Boy To c;ay that the "Liberty Boys" were glad to see their young commande r is putting it mildly. Some one yelled: "Three cheers for Dick Slater, captain of 'The Liberty Boys of 76' and the cheers were given with a will. 'rhen Bob Estabrook l eaped down off his horse and shook Dick's hand heartily. 0 "How are you, old man?" he "And how hav.:: you been getting along?" "I'm all right, Bob," was the reply; "and we are getting along all right, now that you boys have got here. The


26 THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. redcoats were making it lively for us before you cam!f, how-without making one more attempt to get even with t ever." youths who had given his force such a thrashing. "Well, I'm glad we got here .in time, then." The ''Boy Defenders" had been wonderfully fortum '.rhe scouts that had been sent out by Dick to head that day. Not a one had been killed, and only four w off the "Liberty Boys" and bring thein to the assistance W'Ounded, and none of these very seriously. This was o of the "Boy Defenders" now reported. They had headed ing to the fact that they had kept themselves sheltered the "Liberty Boys" off, explained what was wanted, and the trees the whole of the time, and had shifted their po then the party had headed toward the settlement and ridtion with such frequency and rapidity that hardly a voll den hard, arriving there just in time, as has been seen from the British was directed toward the spot where t The four scouts had become well acquainted with the youths really were at the time. The tactics of the be majority of the "Liberty Boys," and now proceeded to had completely fooled the enemy, and rendered their 1 make their own comrades acquainted with them 'I:1e two tempts impotent. riarties of youths mingled, and were soon on the best of When the force reached Mr. Hardy's a large crowd terms. found there. waiting to learn the result of the encoun Three of the "Liberty Boys" had been wounded, but with the redcoats. The firing had been heard, and all neither of them seriously. The attack had come so sud denly and unexpectedly to the redcoats that they h:a,d pQt . ,, been able to offer any resistance to speak of, and the three ''Liberty Boys" who were wounded owed the fact to accident than aught else. non-combatants of the settlement had gathered, and, a fever of excitement, had waited for the return of b1ave "Bov Defenders." When it was learned that not one qad fallen a great of joy and relief went up. The boys' sw.eethearts lea Dick turned his attention to the prisoners, of whom into their arms and hugged and kissed them, and cau there were ten. He did not wish to have them on his the boys to forget that they were tired as a result of th hands, and so he told them that they might go free; but exertions in trying to hold the redcoats in check. that he wished them to te'll their commander that if he did Dick Slater was praised by the parents of the boys not at once leave that part of the country it would go hard bringing the youths all back, and the four who w with him. wounded received so much attention, and were hugged "I shall permit him to come back here and bury his caressed by their sweethearts to such an extent, that t dead and take care of his wounded," said Dick; "but when said they were of a mind to go back and hunt up the r that has been done he must get aw.ay from this part of the coats and get wounded some more. at Will you tell him?" "Oh, but you might get killed next time/' said D 'rhe men said they would. They were only too glad to Hooker, Tom Wilson being one of the wounded ones. get away, and would have promised anything. you will just stay right here where you are." "We have put at least one hundred of your men out of "I'm willing," sltid Tom, gathering her to him, commission to-day," went on Dick, "and that leaves you giving her a bear-like squeeze. "I'm satisfied to remai not to exceed one hundred and fifty. We are more than "I should think he would be!" growled Bob Estabro two hundred, and we the ground, and you do not. If who, with the rest of the "Liberty Boys," was a silent your commander tries to get at us again we will go in to interested epectator of it all. "I think I should be i make a clean sweep of it, and wiU not rest until we have were in his place." killed every one of you." Presently Molly Marsden approached Dick and s The ten redcoats said they would tell Lieutenant Sharp-"Mr. Slater, do you remember what we girls said we wo ley what Dick had said, and then took their departure, has-do if you brought the boys all back safe?" tening away in the direction taken by their fleeing com rades. Dick and his comrades then did what they could to re lieve the suffering of '"the worst wounded redcoats, and after doing this all set out for the settlement. Dick left scouts all along the line, however, as he did not intend to let the British surprise him. He had doubts regarding the matter of the enemy withdrawing. He suspected that Sharpley would not be satisfied to go away Dick smiled. "I have a pretty good memory, Molly," he said "Yes, I "We said we would each and every one of us give yo hug and a kiss, and we are going to keep our word. C on, girls!" lifting up her voice. "Come on, and keep y word to Mr. Slater. You owe him a hug and a kiss; you must pay your debts!" Then she leaped forward gave Dick a hug and a kiss. A groan went up from several of the "Liberty Bo


I \ THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY. 27 1d Bob, who was standing near, said: "Oh, what luck! be angry, but would be proud to know that I had been so ick always was the luckiest fellow alive honored, and she would love you girls like sisters if she As the girls came running up, laughing and replying knew you." the teasing remarks of their who pretended "I knew it!" cried Molly. "And I love Alice Estabrook, be jealous, Dick lifted his hand, and said: even though I have never seen her." "One moment, young l adies. You must know and un"And how about her brother Bob?" asked that youth, rstand it would be happiness, indeed, for me to be hugwith a grin. d and kissed by you, but I do not feel that itis fair, un"Hello! Some one else will have to be careful!" laughed !I' the circumstances. You see these young fellows' here?" Dick. "Supposing I were to tell sistei Edith how you are dicating the ''Liberty Boys" by a wave of the hand. carrying on, Well, they have been my comrades, night and day, in fair "Oh, is your sister his sweethe_art?" cried Molly eather and foul, in peace and in battle, for nearly :five And then, when Dick acknowledged that such was the fs; we are like brothers, and there is not one among us case, the jolly girl gave a scream of delight, and rushed no would not cheerfully give up his life in defense of any away to tell everybody how Dick Slater and Bob Esta le of the others. In their behalf, as their comrade and brook had each other's sister for a sweetheart. She thought other I am going to ask you brave, true-hearted girls to it was quite a romance, and so did the majority of the ve them the kisses you intended to give to me. 'l'hey girls, and it furnished them the theme ior considerable talk e true-hearted lj.Ild manly, have sweethiarts at home, and for many a day afterward. receive the .ki sses in the spirit in which they are ten-'rhe "Liberty Boys" were given a hearty welcome by And they have really earned them, too, more than ihe men and women of the settlement, for they realized ]lave, for if they had not put in an appearance to-day that these bronzed and youthful veterans had been the t when they did the redcoats might have succeeded in means of tJ1eir getting back their sons alive, when otherUing a number of the boys of the settlement. The com -wise many of them might never have returned. of the 'Liberty Boys' turned the tide, and the British The youths went iuto camp along with the "Boy De ,re routed. Now, I leave it to you girls to say. Don't fenders," and they were soon as .well acquainted as though 11 think they < re entitled to the kisses?" they had been campaigning together for a year. 'Yes, yes!'' the girls cried, and without a word they Dick told them tb rest up and take it easy, as he felt .gled out the "Liberty Boys," and gaye them the kissei certain there would be work for tl1em to do that night; lt had been intended for Dick Slater. he believed the British would make at least one more at Oh, Dick, you are a man and a brother!" murmured tempt to strike the defenders of the settlement a blow. rb Estabrook, who had received a from pretty Lucy In this he was right, for about ten o'clock that night iritcomb. ''It is all right, old man; and I'll never whisa scout carne in, and reported that the British were moving r a word to Sis about how you were kissed by the sweet in a roundabout way, evidently with the intention of try rginia girls!" ing to enter the settlement from the opposite direction Molly heard what Bob s at'l, and running to him, she from the way they had tried to enter it before. zed him by the arm, and asked eagerly: :oh, is your sister Mr. Slater's sweethe:ut?" "Yes," replied Bob, "I guess I shal l have to be his >ther -in-law one of these days, whether I like it or not. ; is a regular fire-eater, though, and if I were to tell r how you girls have been kissing Dick, I expect she uld give him a piece of l1er mind." "I don't believe she would," cried Molly. "I know bet and I wish I cou ld see her and tell her how we admire r s\veetheart. He has saved our sweethearts for us, and red our homes from being burned, and if she shoul(l get 1cl because we kissed him I shouldn't lik e her a bit-and lon't think any girl 1\fr. Slater would love could do such ;hing." "You are right, Molly,'' milecl Dick. "Alice would not "Get ready, boys!" cried Dick. "We will give more good thrashing, and I think that will end it." CHAPTER XI. CELEBRATING THE VICTORY. The youths were eager for the fray. They had had such good luck so far that they felt that they could easily dispose of the enemy Then, too, the "Liberty Boys" were with them, and they felt that they were utterly invincible. Dick left several youths behind, as messengers, whose


I \ 2R 'l'HE LIBER'rY BOYS' STRATEGY. duty it wmlld be to bring the reports to him that were been killed and wounded. Not a single one of the you1 brought in b y the scouts had been killed, though several were wounded-and t .Qick lecl his force away in a sout hwesterly direction, is not so strange when it is taken into consideration tl and moved leisurely, he kne1v that they had plenty of i.he redcoats were taken by surprise and were treated time. From time tg time he received r e ports of the progvolley after volley in such rapid s uccession as to complet, ress of the British, and at la st he found himself almost in demoralize them. They had become so rattled that tl front of them. There was heavy timber at this point, and did not know what to do, and the few. shots that W4 It would make a splendid place for an ambush; so Dick de-fired in return were fired almost without the knowlec cided to secrete his men here and await the co:rping of the of the men who did the shooting, the training of the sold enemy. having prompted it, and the performance having bE He arranged the youths in the be st possible position for practically mechanical. doing good execution, and then gave all such instructions as he thought necessary. 'l'wenty minutes later the redcoats in sight. The moon was shining brightly, and it was easy to see such a large body at quite a distance. Dick sent the word down the line for the boys to' make ready, and the cli cking of the lock-s was heard. Among those captured was Lieutenant Sharpley, and was so thoroughly disgusted and disheartened that he s1 to Dick: "Shoot me and have done with it! I am ashamed to back and report that I have been whipped by a gang boys., and have no desire td live Shoot me!" "Oh, no; I wQJJ.' t do that," said Dick. "The fortur On carne the redcoats They were unsuspecting, and of war have gone against you, that is all." thought that they were going to catch the defenders of "I am disgraced forever, and all chance for advanceme settlement napping by coming into it from a diis gone. I have no desir e to live!" rection from the one that would be watched. They little knew they were marching to their death, put they were soon to learn that s uch was the case. .' / Dick waited till about half the force had got past, and then he gave the word for a volley to be fired. He had divided the two hundred youths up into four sections; and one section was to fire 'at a time. In this way they would be able to fire four volleys before all the loads were gone "Oh, I think you will change your mind about tha1 said Dick. "I certainly shall not shoot you; on the co trary, I am going to let you go free, and your men as WE We use for prisoners." Lieutenant Sharpley still protested that he had no desl to live, but all noticed that he brightened up considerak when he learned that he was not to be held a prisoner. Dick told the lieutenant that he and his men mig from their mu s kets and rifles, after which they could fall remain on the ground and recall their comrades and bu back on the pistols, and as each youth had at least two of their dead and take care of their wounded. the small firearms, that would make eight more volleys which would be at their command before it would be nec essary to reload a weapon-and Dick did not believe the redcoats would make it necessary for them to have to do any reloading. In this he was right. The attack came as a clap of thunder from a clear sky. The British were not expecting 11nything of the kind, and were taken wholly by surprise. They tried to rally and return the fire, but as volley "As for us, we wil'r return to the settlement," he sai in conclusion. "I shall keep scouts out, however, and you make another move tow rd attacking the people the settlement I shall go to work and finish you i good and all I will shoot your men without mercy aj will give no quarter. You are free to depart, and will do well to do so at once; arid when you get ba to Arnold tell him that 'The Liberty Boys of '76" a after volley was poured into their ranks they became com-coming for him with a rope woven especially to hang ar pletely demoralized and finally turned and fled at the top traitors such as he!" of their speed. The majority threw away their weapons The lieutenant made no reply, but it was plain that and many yelled in fright as they ran. They had never had had all he wanted. been so terribly handled in all the time they had been in It was the general belief among the "Liberty Boys'., aJ America, and they bad been engaged in a number of des"Boy Defenders" that the redcoats would give up t pera:te battles, too. attempt to burn the homes of the Whigs of the settleme1 A number threw down their m).lskets ana. surrendered, and return to the main force under Arnold, and it tum begging for quarter. They were made prisoners, and wlien out that they were right. Next morning, just after brea it was all over it was found that a : t least had fast, a scout brought in the word that the remnant


THE LIBERTY BOYS' STRATEGY.' 29 the British force had broken camp and was riding away f girls of the settlement had their love of dancing gratified to in the direction from which they had come. the fullest extent. '"l'he danger is past," said Dick, quietly; "now you When the dance broke up in the early morning all who patriots may breathe freely once more, and unless I miss lived at a distance bade Dick and his "Liberty Boys" goodmy guess you will not be bothered soon again, for I think by, as the youths had announced that they would take their Arnold will have enough to do to look out for himself from departure from the settlement at noori. now on." After a few hours' sleep and a hearty meal, was The people of the settlement were delighted. They had gathered at Mr. Hardy's that morning to see the youths and hear the story of the fight with the redcoats, and they could not say enough in praise of Dick Slater. They declared\ that he was a great strategist, second only to the great Washington himself. The girls were out in full force, of course, and a hap pier set of gitls never lived. They were proud of the boys and were honest enough to let them know it. The result was that everybody was happy-;-so much so, in fact, that when Sam Bostwick suggested that they give a dance that night in honor of their victory over the redcoats he was almost mobbed by the delighted maidens who, headed by at once breakfast and dinner, Dick and his "Liberty Boys" got ready to take their deparhl!"e. It1 really gave Dick considerable pain to have to part from Sam Bost":ick, Tom Wilson and all the other young fellows who had constituted the company of "Boy Defenders," and he noted tha t there was a very sober look on the faces elf Molly Marsden, Lucy Whitcomb, Mabel Hooker and the other girls who were present. "May your life be preserved and you be safely returned to the arms of your sweetheart, Alice, when this cruel war is over!" b reathed Molly Marsden as she shook hands with Dick. "Thank you, Molly," replied Dick, gently; "plea!)e accept my best wishes for your happiness-and Sam 's!" Molly pulled and hauled and slapped the poor fellow around to such an extent that an onlooker who did Five minutes later the "Liberty Boys" rode away from not understand the matter would have thought they were trying to tear him to pieces instead of simply trying, in their impulsive, enthusiastic to show their approval of his suggestion. < \ The dance was held that night. All the girls of the settlement, more than a hundred in number, present, and \he dancing was kept up all night. There were three large rooms downstairs at Mr. Hardy's, and the was taken out and dancing went on in all three rooms at once. From forty to fifty couples were dancing at th'e Whig settlement, followed, far as they could bear the voices, by cheers from the lips of the "Boy Defenders," their sweethearts and parents. Five miles east of Mr. Hardy's the youths saw a human form swinging at the -end of a rope tied to the limb of a by the roadside. Dick spurred his horse up near enough so that he could see the face of the corpse. "Dave Bloggs !" he exclaimed. 'He did not keep his oath, after all; in endeavoring to get revenge on me he undoubtedly ventlJ,red into the camp of the redcoats, was taken for a patriot spy and hanged. His fate was dethe same time, and the only let up was for an hour, from served." l. twelve to one, when the dancers stopped long enough to partake of a bountiful supper which was served in the big kitchen. Then the "Liberty Boys" rode onward. THE END. Dick was the hero of the occasion, and as every girl present wished to with him, he was kept pretty busy. The next number (56) of "The Liberty Boys of '76" "I am working harder than I ever worked in my life," will contain "THE LIBERTY :BOYS' W WORK; he said to Mr. Hardy; "but I'm having a fine time, neverOR, SHOWING THE REDCOATS HOW TO FIGHT," theless, and I guess, to judge from appearances, that all by Harry Moore. >1re enjoying themselves." "It would certainly seem so," agreed Mr. Hardy. "Well, you have earned your enjoyment." Of all present perhaps none enjoyed themselves so much as did the "Liberty Boys." They, as Bob expressed it after ward, "almost danced their legs off." They danced with the same vim and energy that they usually displayed when going aHer the redcoats, and for once in their lives the SPECIAL NOTICE: All back numbers of his weekly are always in print. If you cannot obtain them from any newsdealer, send the price in money or postage stamps by mail to FRANK TOUSEY, PUBLISHER, 24 UNION SQUARE, NEW YORK, and you will 1;eceive the copies you order by return mail.


.-.,., ._....,. OLD AND YOUNG KING BRADt DtTECTIVES. 'Wtdtg-By U.':>Q ,di 'Enid4d 4.1 Steoiid -z,za;; tl..i .N;;u Yarlo Olfl,tf, MGI'M t 1899: iii.' r-.:--No. 1M. NEW YORK, tTANU !RY 10, 1902. Price r. Cent& "'-...... -1,.......


SECR.IET SER.VICE OtD AND YOUNG BRADY, DETECTIVES. BICE 5 CTS. 32 PAGES. COLORED COVERS. ISSUED WEEKLY LA'.I'.ES'.I' ISSUES: The Bradys In Chicago ; or, ::iol ving the lllystery of the Lake Front. The Bradys' Great llllstake; or, Shadowing the Wrong lllan. The Bradys and the Mall Mystery; or, Working for the Government. 'l'he Bradys Down South; or, The Great Plantation lllystery. The House in the ::iwawp; or, 1.'he Bradys' Keenest Work. 1.'he Knocl;-outDrops Gang; or, 'l'he Bradys' Risky Venture. The Bradys' Close Shave; o r, lnto the Jaws of Death. The Bradys Star Case; or, Working for Love and Glory. The Bradys In '!frisco; or, A 'l'hree Thousand Mile Bunt. The Bradys and the Express 'l'hleves ; or, 'J.'raclng the Package Marked "l'aid." The Bradys' Hot Chase; or, After the Horse Stealers. The Bradys' Great Wager; or, The Queen of r.tttle Monte Carlo. The Bradys' Double Net; or. Catr.blng the Keenest of Criminals. The Man in the Steel Mask; or, The Bradys' Work for a Great Fortune. 'l'he Bradys and the Blac._ Trunk: or, Working a Silent Clew. Going It Bllnd ; or, 'l'he Bradys' Good Luck. The Bradys Balked; or, Working up Queer Evidence. Against Big Odds; or, The llradys Great Stroke. 'l'he Bradys and the l!'orger: or, Tracing the N. G. Check. The Bradys' '!'rump Card; or, Winning a Case by Bluff. The Bradys and the Grave Robbers; or, Tracking the Cemetery Owls. 92 The Bradys and the Spy, or, Working Against the Pollee Depart ment. 93 The Bradys' Deep Deal; or, Hand-in-Glove with Crime. 94 'l'he Bradys In a Snare; or, The Worst Case of All. 95 The Bradys Beyond Their Depth; or, The Great Swamp Mystery. 96 The Bradys' Hopeless Case ; or, Against Plain Evidence. 97 'l'he Bradys at the Helm; or, the Mystery of the River Steamer. 98 The Bradys in Washington; or, Working for tbe President. 99 'l'he Bradys Duped; or, 'l'he Cunrdng Work of Clever Crooke. 100 'l'he Bradys in Maine; or, Solving the Great Camp Mystery. 101 The Bradys on the Great Lakes ; or, Tracking the Canada Gang. 102 The Bradys in Montana; or, The Great Copper Mine Case. 108 The Bradys Hemmed In ; or, 1'heir Case in Arizona. 104 The Bradys at Sea or, A Hot Chase Over the Ocean. 105 The Girl from London; or, The l!radys After a Confidence Queen. 106 The Bradys Among the Chinamen ; or, The Yellow Fiends of Opium Joints. 107 The nradys and the Pretty Shop Girl ; or, The Grand Street Mystery. lOQ The Bradls and the or, Chasing the Child Stealers. 109 and the 7rong Man; or, Story of a Strange 110 111 112 The I!radys E<:trayed; or, In the Hands of a Traitor. The P.radys and Their Doubles; or, A Strange Tangle of Crime. in the Everglades; or, The Strange Case of a Summer The Brad s and the Missing Boy; or, The Mystery of School No. 6 The Bradys Behind the Scenes; or, The Great 'l'heatrical Case. 113 The Bradys Defied; or, The Hardest Gang In New York. The Bradys and the Opium Deus; or, '!'rapping the Crooks, of n4 The Bradys In High Life; or, 'J.'he Great Society Mystery. East . or, The Mf1stery of a Country Town. 115 The Bradys Among Thieves; or, Hot '\Vork in the Bowery. 116 The Bradys and the Sharpers; Darkest New York. Working or the 'Tr easury'; or, The radys and the Bank Burglars. \17 The Bradys and the Bandits; or, n.unting for a Lost Boy. The Brady a' Fatal Clew; or, A Desperate Game for Gold. 118 The Bradys in Central Park; or, The Mystery of the Mall. Shadowing the Shat pets : or, The Bradys' $10,000 Deal. 119 'J.'he Bradys on their Muscle ; or, Shadowing the Red Hook Gang. The Bradys and the Firebug; or, Found In the Flames. 120 The Bradys' Opium Joint Case; or, Exposing the Chinese Crooks. The Bradys In Texas; o1, 'l'he Great Ranch Mystery. 121 The Bradys' Girl Decoy; or, Rounding Up the East-Side Crooks. 'l'he.Bradys on the Ocean: or, 'l'he l\Iystery of Stateroom No. 7. 122 The Bradys Under Fire; or, Tracking a Ganf of Outlaws. The Brlldys and the Office Boy; or, Working Up a Business Case. 123 'l'h' B d t th B h Th J\1 t th B th H J.'he Br-ltd"S in the Backwoods, or, 'l'he Mystery of the Hunters' e ra ys a e eac ; or, e ys ery o e a ouse. Camp. J 124 The Bradys and the Lost Gold l\Iine; or, Hot Work An10ng the Cowboys. Ching Foo, the Yellow Dwarf; or, The Bradys and the 0pium 125 The Bradys and the Missing Girl; or, A'Ciew Found In the Dark. Smokers. 126 The Bradys and the Banker: or, The Mystery of a Treasure Vault The Bradys' Still Hunt; or, The Case that was Won by Waiting. 127 The Bradys and the Boy Acrobat; or, Tracing np a Theatrical Case. Caught by the Camera: or, 'l'he Bradys and the Girl from Maine. 128 The Bradys and Bad Man Smith; or, The Gang of Black Bar. The Bradys In Kentucky ; or, Tracking 11 Mountain Gang. l 29 The Bradys and the Veiled or, Piping the Tombs Mystery. The Bank Note; or. 'l'h e Bradys Below the D ea d Line. 130 The Bradys and the Deadshot Gang; or, Lively Work on the Frontier. The Bradys on Deck; or, 'l'he Mystery of the Private \acht. 131 The Bradys with a Circus; or, On the Road with the Wild Beasb The Bta!lys In a Trap; or, Working Against a liard Tamers. Over the Line; or, The Bradys' Chase Through Canada. 132 The Bradys in Wyoming; or, Tracking the Monntain Men. The nradys In Society: or, Case of Mr. Barlow. 133 The Bradys at Coney Island; or, Trapping the Sea-side Crooks. The Bradys In the Slums; or, Trapping the Crooks of the "Red 134 'l'heBradys and the Road Agents; or, The Great Deadwood Caee. Light District." 135 'l'he Bradys and the Bank Clerk; or, Tracing a Lost Money Package. Found, in the River; or, The Bradys and the Brooklyn Bridge 136 The Bradys on the Race Track; or, Beating the Shali\>ers. Mystery. 137 The Hradys in the Chinese Quarter; or, The Queen oftheOpiumFienda. The Bradys and the Missing Box; or, Running Down the Itnilroad 138 The Bradys and the Counterfeiters; or, Wild Adventures in the Blue Thieves. Ridge Mountains. The Queen or Chinatown: or, The Bradys Among the "Hop" Flena!L 139 The Bradys in the Dens of New York; or, Working on the John Street The Bradys and the Girl Smuggler; or, Wotking for the Custom 14 0 and the Rail Road 'fhieves; or, The Mystery of and the Runaway Boys; or, Shadowing the Circus night Train. Sharps. 141 The Bradys after the Pickpockets; or, Keen Work in the Shopping The Bradys and the Ghosts; or, Solving the Mystery of the Old 142 and the Broker; or. The-Plot to Steal a Church Yard. 14 3 The Bradys as Reporters or, Working for a Newspaper. The Bradys and the Brokers: or, A Desperate Game In Wall Street. 144 The Bradys and the Lost Ranche; or, The Strange Case in Texas. The Bradys' Fight to a Finish: or, Winning a Desperate Case. 145 The Bradytrand the ::iignal Boy; or. The Great Train Robbery. The Bradys' Race for Life; or, Rounding Up a .rough Trio. 146 The Bradys and Bunco Bill; or, The Cleverest Crook in New York. The Bradys' Last Chance; or, The Case In the Dark. 147 The Bradys and the Female Detective; or, Leagued with the Custom The Bradys on the Road : or, 'l'be Strange Case of a Drummer. Inspectors. The Girl in Black; or, 'l'he Bradys '!'rapping a Confidence Queen. 148 The Bradys and the Bank Mystery; or, The Search for a Stolen Million. The Bradys In Mulberry Bend; or, The Boy Slaves of "Little Italy." 14 9 The Bradys at Cripple Creek;_ or, Knocking out the "Bad Men." The Bradys' Battle for Life; or, The Keen Detectives' Greatest 15 0 The Bradys and the Harbor tiang; or, Sharp Work After Dark. Peril. 151 The Bradys in Five Pointe; or, The Skeleton in the Cellar. The Bradys and the Mad Doctor; or, The Hated 111111 In the 152 Fan Toy, the Opium Queen; or, The Bradysand theChineseSmuggle1e. 1\Iarsb. 15 3 The Bradys' Boy Pupil; or, Sifting Strange Evidence. The Bradys on the Rall; or, A l\lystery of the Lightning Express. 15 4 The Bradys in the Jaws of Death; _or, Trapping the Wire Tappers. For sale by all newsdealers, or sent pastpaid on teceipt of price, 5 cents per copy, by 1BANK TOUSEY, Publisher, 24 Union Square, New York, IF YOU WANT ANY BACK NUMBERS our Libraries and cannot procure them from newsdealers they can be obtained from this office direct. Cut out and fi!: the following Order Blank and send it to us with the price of the books you want and we will send them to you by rO> ru mail. POSTAGE STAMPS 'l'AiiEN 'J'B.E SAME AS MONEY. 'RANK TOUSEY Publisher, 24 Union Square, New York. .......................... DEAR SmEnclosed find .. ... cents for which please send me: copies of WORK AND WI Nos ............................. . . " PLUCK AND LUCK .............. .............. ;.... . " SECRET SERVICE .......................... ... .-. . " THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76, Nos ........... -........ . . . " Ten-Cent Hand Books, Nos ..................... ..... . . . fame ..................... Street and N-o........ .... Town .......... State., .. e