The Liberty Boys and the Queen's Rangers, or, Raiding the raiders

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The Liberty Boys and the Queen's Rangers, or, Raiding the raiders

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The Liberty Boys and the Queen's Rangers, or, Raiding the raiders
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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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The University of South Florida Libraries believes that the Item is in the Public Domain under the laws of the United States, but a determination was not made as to its copyright status under the copyright laws of other countries. The Item may not be in the Public Domain under the laws of other countries.
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025745119 ( ALEPH )
72801842 ( OCLC )
L20-00242 ( USFLDC DOI )
l20.242 ( USFLDC Handle )

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} I THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76 A Weekl y Magazine Containing Stories of the American Revolution Issued 1" prir.r.. $3.00 per Canada, $3.50; Foreign $4.00. 'Fra1 J Tousey, Pu). lisker, 168 West 23d St., New York, N. Y. Entered as second cl ... :,s 1111..Llt..r, Ja1war • . 13, ut .i, ,.vJ]Kt •• ir fork, N. Y. () .. , , 11 '-\!:>'< ,,. ?\ o . 1'KW YORK , DECl!.MBrRi2, .. 6 Cents. / •"' :1:>'-e\•,,-,,..= / .,_\:f>e :-,1.1 • C"'':/ . TAKE NOTICE! ,,.,,.,. On account of the pteilmt •-fu Ne w York, o issue this num• ber in ib present form. soon :.... LU .. J.ifticulty is adjm u).,,.. rual appear:mce of this weekly will be reaumecl.-The Publisher . (>_,,' THE LIBERTY BOYS AND THE QUEEN'S RANGERS . -OR-RAIDIN G THE RAIDERS By H AR R Y MOORE " CHAPTER I. "Very good, Jack. This way. W'hat's your name?" "Henry Clinton." Hen'r1J Clint

I {.rBE LIDERTY BOYS OF '76. 3 "I know some Of the nouses whicn they intend raiding. ! have copied the list. I would have taken it, but they would have missed it." "And perhaps made up another, which you would have known nothing about. Yours was the better plan. Won't you sit down? Harry!" looking out. " Yes?" Ilarry being at some little distance. "Send Bob here." Bob Estabrook was the firs t lieutenant of the Liberty Boys and D;C;k Slate r ' s dearest friend. I "All right," s aid Harry. "What is your name ?" asked Dick. "Henry Clinton. I live at Kingsbridge. My father keeps an inn, the 'Sheaf and Sickle.' You may know the place?" "Yes, I hav e seen it." .At that moment Bob enterr d. "This boy wants to join, tlie , Liberty Boys, Bob," ly. "Well, he seems al: right. Ride, shoot, run, swim and all that?" "So he says. I'll b" there in a m o ment, boys.'' The two lieutenants left the tent and Dick said: "Th:!re is only o n e obje c t i on, Henry.'' '"W haG is t! .... i;?" "That are no gir ls smong the Liberty Boys!" CH APTER II. A S urprise for the Rairlers . Henry had taken a seat on a stool, and now :Cick said: H enry C li n to flushed v i o l en tl y , t h e n turned pale and "This boy has brought some important informat ion, Bob ; 1 seeme.-! to sw oon, a n d finally s . a id, i n a lo w t on e : no less than a li s t of houses which the Queen's Rangers " T h e n y o u kno ,,.'! " ' are going to raid." "Yes , :rnnt in a hurry. Di c k the n went jumped upon. a beautiful, coal-black "So you wish to j oin the Liberty Boys?" Dick asked. h o E s e ?f purse Arab1ar; blo od, and "Yes, to serve my country.'' "Ca1l, . ge t Henry . a horse. . . "Can you ride a horse?" . All n g hd, Gap tam, said a fat German boy, we1ghmg "Very well.'' qm t e two hundre d pounds. . . " Can you shoot a musket or a pistol?" He ran off and soon with a horse, which Henry "Both. I am a good shot.' and t?ok plac e with the boz,s. . "Can you swim run and do oth thin like that?" . Dot was em fme veller, I bet me, said Carl "Yes,, ' er gs sp1eler to Patsy, as they rode off at a gallop, "und will "Yo,; are ready to face death in the cause?" one of f do:ie Poys pooty goot, I bet me.'' The boy trembled but answered. Y1s, so he will, said Pats y. . "Yes; if I die it be in a good cause.'' Off, they rode, at. good for the house on the "Then you are ready to take the oath to do all in your Queens h s t was still at a good power for your country and to stand by the Liberty Boys may already set out, and it was there-in all things right?" fore 1mpe1ative to ex ercis e all haste. "I am!" firmly. On they went, and patriots cheered them as they rode Sounds of preparation for the march were heard with-past: . out and all was bustle, but no confusion. I Mile after mile they rode, '.lnd Henry showed she In a short time a number of the Liberty Boys bad drawn had not boasted when she said tha t she r i d e well. up in a line, mounted and ready, in the com an street . They pass ed one house afte r ai;other which had been outsi de Dick's tent. p y listed plunder, b!lt as yet nothlng had. been dof1:e "You swear that this list is absolutely correct?" asked _The first the hst was yei to be reached, and it was Dick s till at som e distance by the r o ad. . There was a short cu t to it across fields and through "Yes. I copied it from the list one of S i mcoe's officers wood s to the r ear, however. showed to my father. I found it in his room.'' Then ::;uddenly a boy appeared, riding furiously on a "He lived at the inn?" hors e without sadd le or bridle. had quarters there. He is one of the higher offi"Whoa!" he y e ll e d , digging his heels into the horse' s cers. sid es . "And you said nothing to any one about it?" The boys parted their ranks to give him time to stem. "You are the first.'' "The Rangers are raidin' our house!" he gasped. "Do you know the risk you ;:-:;;-; ?" 1 ""i.'b.ey've <'lh ven everybody out oi .it, and they're i:oing U> "Thoroughly. I am sick of the hypocrisy I see arounCI set it on fire!" me every day, indignant at the excesses of these men who "Dismount, half of you," said Dick, quickly leaping frol1'1 call soldie..Ts, and ruix.ious to do something .for his black Arabian. "Take the other by the huq,. my country."Good! You shall do something. I will help you all Mark, .Jack, Harr y Thurber and two-score more leaped I can.'' from thei r hcrse s and followed Dick. "And you will take me into the Liberty Boys?" The y fairly race d across fields and through the woodi, More and more of the boys had gathered outside and to g e t to the hou se. all seemed eager to get off. It, -0 l a thlrd of the distance by the road. Bob and Mark came into the tent, and Bob said: Once t; •ght a glimp s e of the h :mse through the "We are all ready, Dick. Major is saddled and just trees and saw building a fire on the la vn. putside.'' The house was a. large, roomy one, with a cen tral hall


THE .illERTY BOYS OF '76. and a great front porch and had been open to many a good patriot on all occasions. "Forward!" cried Dick. "We may yet be in time to save it." Redcoats were seen coming out and going into the house, and there was no doubt that they were plundering it. They had not seen the Liberty Boys, being too busy at their lawl ess work. On dashed the boys, Dick in the lead, all aro..ious to fall upon the Que en's Rangers and raid the r a id ers. Every boy held his musket in readiness to fire upon the enemy at si g ht. At last they were in the woods just back of the house, their com i n g being as yet unsuspected. The raiders , having got all of the valuables out of the house, w ere about to set fire to it, gathering brands for that purpo se. At this moment Dick and the Liberty Boys appeared, firing a volley as they pressed forward. The R angers were taken completely by surprise. One brawny redc oat, rushing forward with a firebrand in one h and and a musket in the other, staggered backward as a bullet struck him. Another, taking a brand from the fire to help with the evil work, fell forward, almost upon the fire itself. He picked himself up hastily and fled toward the road. The gallant boys, led by Dick, came dashing up with a cheer, firing a pistol v o lley. The plunderers, coming out of the house, dropped their bundles a n d fled. "Yes," said Dick, with a smile. Later, as they were riding on at an easy gait, Marlt said to Jack. "You did not tell me what you were whistling about." "No, so I did not," wit h a laugh. "And what did you whi sper to Di c k just now?" "That was what I was whistling about,'' with another • "Yes, but what was it?" Jack fell ba c k, and wh e n Mark joined him said: "Yo u reme mb e r my s i ster D olly?" "Yes; but what has that got to--" ''You know h o w s h e put o n a suit of my clothes and my name a s w e ll and joined the Liberty Boys, just before the battle 0f Monmouth ?" "Yes, I remember. Moll Pitcher found her out and then you joined in h e r place." "Ex actly. D ic k is wis e r now. That's why I whistled when she came in." " S he? Who is she?" "Henry Clinton,' ' shortly. "Jove! Do you mean it, Jack? Is Henry a girl?" "Yes." "How do you know?" "I asked Dick and he said yes. You heard him, didn't you?" "Well, I never thought of such a thing." "You want to study girls more," laughed Jack. Some f e ll as they ran and some escaped. Other Rangers now came swarming up, .but _the , Boys mass ed themselves on the lawn, forming m open hne and met the enemy resolutely. Then a loud cheer was heard, and Bob Estabrook and the rest of the Liberty Boys were seen coming up at a CHAPTER IIL T'Y'oublesome Tories. gallop. . ,, . "Down with the Rangers! Scatter the raiders! cried Dick. "Liberty forever!" echoed the fearless youths. "Raid the raiders! Down with them!" The R angers, not knowing how many were coming and fearing an entire army, fled in the greatest consternation. "Hooroo !" roared Patsy, who was with Bob. "Don't give thim no quarther, the vilyans ! Shoot thim down loike wolves, for th, at's all they are, the robbers!" The L iberty Boys had no love for the Queen's Rangers and sought every opportunity to do them harm. These men were native-born, who had espoused the Loyalist cause and turned their hands against their country, and the Liberty Boys had only contempt for them. They had an honest dislike for the Bi;itish, but !or Hessians, Yagers, Cowboys and these American Loyalists they had a supreme c o ntempt. Assailed on all sides, the Rangers filed in the direction of Kingsbridge and before long not one of them was to be seen. . "They won't return in a hurry," said Dick; "hut it may be as well to follow them up a bit and see that they are well on their way." Bob had brought up the horses ridden by Dick and the others, who had taken the short cut, and now the boys remounted. Riaing up to Dick, Henry dismounted and said: "I would better return as I came, in order not to excite suspicion." "Very g ood. But we will hear from you shortly?" "Yes and thank you very much for your kindness." "I shall no doubt have some suggestions for your shortly, upon which you can work." "Very good. I will do my best." Then the boy, as the greater part of the Liberty Boys supposed Henry to be, struck off down a path leading to the wQPu ble go at once to the spot." Then h e and Dick set off to a few miles north. Dick and Bob lived in Westchester and Dick wished to go for a short time. Dick's s ister Edit h was Bob's sweetheart, while Alice Estabrook reversed these relations, being the sweetheart of Dick and the sister of Bob. The boys set off at a gallop and arrived in the neigh borhood of their homes early in the afternoon. They were rirling at a leisurely gait to give their horses a rest, when along came a dozen evil-looking boys of their own age or a little younger. "There are those Tory bullies,'' said Bob. "Look out for trouble, Dick." "They may get more than they bargain for," in a tone of determination. The crowd of boys, who were Tories, as Bob had said, and bore an evil reputation, now came forward. A big, hulking boy, with a red, and not overclean face, broke off a good sized splinter from a rail fence and said, boastingly: "We're goin' ter lick you young rebels, so look out for yerselves." "We've just scattered a lot of Queen's Rangers, Scroggs, so you'd better go slow,'' said Bob. . , "Git down off'n your horses an' we'll hck yer good an' hard,'' said another boy, whose name was Hank Jones. "Get out of the way, you bullies!" said Dick, sharply. "We have no time to waste on you, so clear out. Come along, ' Bob!" The two boys then put their horses to their paces and shot forward. The Tory boys would not be advised and tried to stop the two young patriots. The result was most disastrous to the bullies. Young Scroggs was sent rolling into the ditch with a biack eye. Hank Jones was thrown against the fence and others roughly handled. Some were upset in the dusty road; some got cuts from


THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76. ' •• Dick's or Bob's whips as the boys flew past, and scarcely one escaped a rough shaking. Then Dick and Bob went on and soon disappeared. Reaching the Estabrook cottage, the boys found both girls there , the two being frequent visitors and rarely to be found apart. Dick related the adventure of the morning, and added: "I think the girl will make a good spy, but she may not want to r emain at home, and so I thought I would get you two g irls interested." "Bring her up here, Dick," said Alice. "I should very muc h like to m eet h er." "She is a brave girl, brother," added Edith; ''but if she would like to be with us part of the time, I am sure we could make it pleasant for her." "That's the sort of girl," declared Alice, who was much like her brother Bob. "She will be sure to do something . It seems to me, som etimes as if I did not do all I could." " N o one else thinks so, then, my girl," laughed Dick. "Why, you are a famous patriot, and are all the time doing something." "They b oth of them are," added Bob. "Why, you don't have to put on boots and breeches to be a patriot." "As if I would!" laughe d Alice. • "Jack Warren's sister did it, and so I did Henry; but, as I say, it is not necessary." "You b o ys are afraid we would get all the attention if we did," returned Alice, shyly. "Why, Alice, you know we couldn't do that," said Edith, who was of a gentler nature, but a very lovable girl. "I don't w ant to," laughed Alice; "but I don't think any the less of Dorothy Warren and Henry Clinton for doing so." "Why, no, and I hear that Jack's sister is a very fine girl." "Will Freeman has been talking to you," chuckled Bob, Will having a great liking for Jack's sister. "Then I'll send o r bring her up," said Dick, "and now I think we will run over to the house for a short time and then return." Reaching the camp some time before dark, tney folilld that the Liberty boys had returned. "We had a brush with a party of Delanc ey's Cowboys,,,. said Mark, "and put them to flight." "Good!" exclaimed both Dick and Bob in a breath. "We didn't hear any more of the other raiders, how e ver, and so we returned." "General Scott will keep a watch on them," said Dick, "and I think they will be careful when they start to fill out that list of theirs." "They never will fill it out if we can help it,'' declared Bob, hotly. "I don't suppose you two boys have been gone all this time without having something happen?" said one of the jolliest of the troop, a boy of the name of Ben Spur• l o ck. "It would be something very unusual if they did not have some sort of an adventure," put in Harry Judson, Harry Thurber's chum. "There was nothing particular," laughed Bob. "We scattered those young Tory bullies and afterward had a brief discussion with the fathers of some of them; but it was hardly worth talking about." "I knew something must have happened," observed Mark. "It is rare t!:iat it does not when you two g() out." Early the next morning Dick put on an ordinary suit of clothes, jumped on Major and set off for Kingsvbddge to see if he could lea1n anything of the enemy's plans. • It was a dangerous undertaking, but Dick never held back on account of danger, and, in fact, it was often incentive to him. Riding on at good speed, he reached Kingsbridge in good t_ime, and, putting up his horse, entered the Shea{ and Sickle, where almost the first person that he met was Henry. CHAPTER IV. Dick Slater in Danger. Dick Slater's father had been killed at. the beginning of the war by a treacherous Tory neighbor-the father The girl was dressed in a p lain, dark frock, without4 of young Scroggs, by the way-and his mother was an the least bit of ribbon or o.f any sort. invalid, having never wholly recovered from the shock. She looked very attractive, n e v e r t heless and Dick di4 J When his father fell dead Dick had seized a rifle and not wonder that Jack had noticed her. ' shot Scroggs, inflicting a mortal wound. "It is dangerous for you to be h ere " Henry said in a low tone. "The Hessians are not far ' Young Scroggs had sworn to be avenged on Dick for "Th d 1 this and was always throwing it up to him; but up to me," no anger so on g as they do not recognize this time b e bad never done anything. "No, I suppose not; but your black horse is well known On the contrary, the boys seldom encountered each to them." other that Dick did not give the Tory bully a well-deserved "I have put him in the barn, where he will not be thrashing. noticed." The two girls accompanied Dick and Bob to the Slater Dick entered the coffee room and took a seat at a window cottage, but nothing was said of the affair of the morn-looking out upon the road. ing, as neither Dick nor Edith wished to excite their There were few persons in the room, all being farmers mother. of the neighborhood. After a short visit, therefore, the two boys jumped into One or two of them knew to be Tories, but of the ' the s a ddle and set off at a lively rate for the camp. rest he was doubtful. The y had gone about two miles when, as they turned a There were no soldiers present, and the conversation was bend in the road, Bob said: likely to interest him. "Here' s more trouble, Dick. Those boys have been "You have heard nothing?" asked Dick, cautiously, as telling their fathers that we beat them without cause, as Henry came forward to take his order. usual, and the men are going to take it up." "See what the young gentleman requires, Henry," said Three or four rough-looking men were standing in the t1\e landlord. a red-faced man of most road, evidently waiting for the boys to come alon g . officious manners. As Dick and Bob on the men advanced and spread Dick ordered some bread and cheese and a glass of but. out. termilk. "Look here, Slater!" began one, an evil-looking fellow. "No, they are quiet for the moment," the girl answeredJ 1 "You just gotter stop--" as she went away. "Yes, I know all about it," answered Dick, shortly. The landlord came up. "Hank has been telling you lies again and you have be"Stranger in the neighborhood?" he asked, taking .., lieved him." seat. "Now, see here, I ain't ergoin' ter have yer torkin' erbout "No, not entirely." my boy like that." "Your face does not seem very familiar ... "I don't see how you can help it, seeing that it is the "I have not been luu-e of lat?," shortlv. tl'uth," snapped Dick. 1 " "You like tne placs, c;of course? Otherwise woatl" He had stopped, but now he urged his horse forward and I not come a second tlme:"Jones was obliged to jump aside in great haste. "No." The others were forced to do the same, and the two I "Not in the army, I suppose? You seem boys rode on umnolested. young."


THE LffiERTY BOYS OF '76. . "Your sympathies are on the right side, no doubt." "So I think," carelessly. The landlord was wary and would not ask a direct ques tion for fear of not getting the right one. "Search the house, gentlemen," said the host. "I cannot have any rebels here. If I had been certain of it, I would have arrested him myself." There were Hesfians inside and out, and it seemed cer tain that the y must dnd Dick. "You mus t have thought on the subject, of course. You seem to p osses s intelligence." "Ye s, " in the same non-committal tone. '.'What do y o u think the outcome will be?" "Of t h e crops?" carele ssly. No one had seen him go out, and yet no one could say that he had not done so. Hessians were posted at every door and a thorough search was begun. "l'{o, n u t o f the crops, but--" Htnry n o w came up and set some dishes on the table. The n th re was the rattle of wheels and the tramp <>f h orse s outs i de. A r u m b ling, old , family coach had come in from the Sou th." . ' ' Ah, so m e of my p11t ro n s !" said t he host, getting up. " I t rust tlwt you will be w ell served.'' w • . ;; out of. hearing the girl said: I . i s hk('ly that a>.nothcr r a id will h e made. The Ran g ers a r e grea tly incen s ed that you interrupted them at their w ork." " N o doubt, " with a smil e . ':Ar.d next tim e t h e y will take a l2rgm party." ' We b e for them," s h ortly. Glancmg ou t 01 the window Dick recoo-nized the persons a lighting fro m the c o ach. ' "' . O ne w a s an pompous-looking man of the namP of Burges s, who lived at White Plains, the other being hi f son , a boy of Dick's own age. He had been m the party who had attacked Dick the day before. .In short, Dick had had many an encounter with young Burgess and had always come out with the best of Bill had no love for him, therefore, and would not fail to do him an evil turn if he could. In a short time old man Burgess and Bill came in ancl took s eats in a corner near a door. Bill looked at Dick sharply, but said nothing. Dick suspected that Bill knew him even in his disguise, but he said nothing. ' In a litt le while Bill got up, saying: "I forgot my handkerchief; left it in the coach.'' Then he went out and Dick wondered what his errand was. "The bully is up to some mischief," was his thought. "He did not forget his handkerchief, any more than J did." The landlord went over and spoke to old man Burgess and was t horoughly Tory in his talk. In a few m inutes Dick looked out of the window and saw a d oze n Hezzians coming along at a quickstep, led by Bill Burgess. "Ha I That's what he was up to!" thought Dick. "He knows me and wants to cause my arrest." He had finished his luncheon and now he arose, as if in no haste, and glanced at Henry. She came over to the table, looked out and said, in a low tone. On the ground floor, upstairs, in the laundry, down cellar, and even in the garret, went the Hessians in search of Dick. The lancllord sho wed them into this room and that, while Henry we 1t about h e r w ork, appare n tly unintereste d. "Ditl y ou se e the r ebel go out, Henry?" the landlord asked. "You wai t e d on him." "I saTI nc. rebe l s," the giri answere d. "IIow should I ! m ow w h d any o ne t h inks w h en t h e r s, :-r notli ing? " "That was Di c k Sl.tter ov e r t h e r e by the window." "And who might h e b e ?" car el e s s ly. 'He's a T<)b e L Yo u ou ght to know him. I believe you're a ,11lfr e b e l yourse l f. Did you s ee h i m g o out?" " No , I d i d n ot," which w a s the truth. " hat time hwe I to catch every one who enter s ? He p a id hjs score anver by ther winder." "Dick Slater, the rebel!" gasped the old man. "Where is he? " "A rebel in my house!" muttered the landlord. "The who sat b; the window? Egad! I might have known it. He would never answer more than 'Yes' or 'No' to a thing I said. I always suspect such close-mouthed folk." "Which wr-y did he go?" asked Bill. "He can't have left the tavern so quick." "You see the rebel, Slater; he was here, yes?" asked the leader of the redcoats of Burgess. "Yes, I saw him; but I didn't know him. He was sitting over the1e." He could hear persons go hurrying by, opening this door and that, hear footsteps overhead, hear voices in the rear and the tramp of feet on the stairs. Up and down, in an out of one room and another, he heard the tramp of feet and the sound of voices. Sometimes they were n ear and then distant, and now and then it seemed a s if some one mus t discoved his hiding place. Once he heard the closet door open and some one came in and he drew the pistol to be ready for a dash. Then the door was shut and the footsteps went away and all was still in that part of the h ouse. He could hear the Hessians calling to each other outside, hear hors es go dashing up and down and then the tramp of footsteps, the opening of doors, the creaking of stairs and all the sounds which betokened that a thorough search was going on. At length he heard Henry say, quite near to him: "If that was Dick Slater and your son knew him, he must have known your ioon."


THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76. i 1J ''I didn't make out that I knowed him ertall," said Bill.] . "Mr. Wheeler?" he asked, as he went forward. "An ddid he make out that he knew you?" I "Yes, that is my name.'' "No; but he must have, er course, 'cause I don't live so far "I am Dick Slater, of the Liberty Boys. I have good from where he does and' I've knowed him er lot er years." son to believe that your hause may be plundered by Simcoe's "If you knew him, he knew you. When you went out, he Rangers, but I do not know just when." went out, knowing that you would go for the soldiers." "Say you so? I was afraid that some such thing would "H'm! I guess that's so, but how in time he got away, happen and have removed :ill of my valuables." with my watchin' of ther house most every minute, gets me.'' "They may burn the house," said Dick. "I am off now to "You can't see through the house, can you? When you were get the Liberty Boys. 'Get all you can to help you. I will on one side he would be on the other.'' be back as soon as possible." "Yus, but I sent ther sogers two diff'rent ways. Huh! I Then he rode away at f'.ll! speed, and in half an hour was know hew ter tell!" at the camp. "Well?" asked the landlord. . He at once aroused the Liberty Boys, saying to Bob: "Look in ther barn. He's got a fine, black hoss what he "We must raid the raiders and show them that we are al• rides. Ef ther hoss is there he's hidin' somewheres yet an' ways ready for them." we just gotter find him." "Good!" cried Bob. "The boys are always ready for such Then there was the tramp of hurrying feet, nnd in a short work." time all was still again. In five minutes the Liberty Boys were all in their sad"If they find Major thos e Hessians will run off with him," dles and riding like the wind. was Dick's thought. "I wonder if Henry thougU of that?" They arrived at the Wheeler house none too soon. After a while he heard Bill Burgess say outside•: Even u3 they halted Dick heard the tramp of an oncoming "'''a'll, thl? hoss is gone, ennyhow, ::ind l gues s lw must tioop. . , have went, too; but how he did it when I wasn't gone on'y a TJVenty or more men of the district had already asseml:>led few,I can't makeout." to help the owner of the house protect his property. Then he hea1d a , oice inthehouse saying: These were placed in the barn, with as many more of:the "The rebel .,got away before we came. That fool ought to Liberty .Boys to assist them. have told some one, so that the fellow could have been More than that number were stationed in the house and a watched." number in each of the other outbuildings. "1 After thai there was the tramp of horses, and at length all Dick and a score of the boys remained in the road, just out was still again. of sight of the house. 1 , At last the pauel was shoved back, and Henry said: The tramp of the horMmen grew louder, and at last a ''It is safe for you to go now. Bill Burges. s has gone and party of three-score Queen's Rangers came dashing up a11d the Hessians have returned to camp.'' halted. "What did you do with Major?" asked Dick. "You "Now, then, to show these rebels the i"oily of their ways!" thought of him, I se e.'' cried the leader. "Yes, and put him in a part of ihe barn where no one Then the raiders dismounted and made for the would think of looking." and the outbuildings. "You are a very clever girl, Henry," said Dick, coming out. "Thank you! You will find Major at the back door. You will not want to stay longer, I suppose"?" "No, for there seems to be little or nothing to learn." Turning the Tables. "If there is any news I will contrive t.o 1:;end word.'' "Thank you!" and now Dick made his wa:y to the back CHAPTER VI. door, sprang into the s addle and rode away . . He across man Burgess and B_ill on the road, and' The raider hurried over the lawn an

rrHE LIBERTY 'BOYS OF '76. Two horses were captured, besides a number of JDuskets and a quantity of ammunition. Some of the Queen's Rangers reached the road and went flying toward Kingsbridge at full speed. Others were forced to take to the woods and trust to get back to their camp, somehow. The men of the section, not content with driving off the Rangers, pursued them, firing shot after shot, and wounding many. The Liberty Boys were quite satisfied with having driven off the enemy and capturing horses, muskets and ammunition. "Raiding the raiders is a new idea to those fellows," laughed Bob. "I wonder how they like it!" "It is evidently something they never thought of," retorted Mark. "Suppose we try it often, then, and get them used to it," observed Ben Spurlock. "It has given them an entirely different idea of us," remarked Sam Sanderson, another of the Liberty Boys. "Yes, and they'll be calling us saucy, young rebels more than ever," put in Will Freeman. The Liberty Boys remained in the neighborhood till there seemed to be no likelihood of the enemy returning, and then set out for their own camp with the captured horses. "Now we was caughted all dose horses alretty, we should had ein goot subber, I bet me," observed Carl, when they got back. "Off av the horses, is it, Cookyspiller?" cried Patsy in alarm. "Sure that's phwat yer said." "Humbug! You was t'ought I was eated a horses?" "Sure that' s phwat yez said, just the same. Well, niver moind, Cookyspiller, but as yez do be sayin' something about supper, come wid me an' help me foind something,'' said Patsy. "All righd. I was went mit you," and the two funny fel lows started for the hills. There were many wild places among those hills, and plenty of game to be had. It was said that there were even bears among them, for, near the towns as they were, much of their area was a perfect wilderness. Off went the boys, with their muskets over their shoul ders, Patsy whistling as they entered the thicker woods. "For why you was whistled?" asked Carl. "So dot you don'd was avraid been?" "Go on wid yez!" indignantly. "Whist! There's a cow atin' whortleberries." "WeU. you don'd was wanted to shooted ein cow, did you?" "No. But we kin milk her, begorral" Suddenly that cow arose on its hind legs and proved to be a brown bear. Patsy, in his surprise, let out a whoop and fled, firing off his musket in his alarm. "Who dot was?" asked Carl. "Shoot him, Cookyspiller, an' thin run!" cried Patsy. Carl fired, and then, catching sight of the bear moving toward him, turned and fled. He caught his foot in a vine, tripped and fell headlong. Carl sprang up in great haste. "Sure Oi don't see the bear at all. Phwere is he?" "More bedder you was looked yourselluf," said Carl, mak-ing off. Patsy had no intention of looking, but suddenly came by accident upon the bear lying on the ground, quite d&d. "Sure, Oi kilt him widout knowin' it an' thin yez com plated the job!" the jolly fellow cried. "Off you was killed him now, I was killed him, too?" asked Carl. "Sure, he may not have known it till yez foired, but he's dead now at any rate." They skinned the bear, cut off some of the choicest parts and then returned to the camp and told of their luck. Ben, Sam, the two Harrys and Will Freeman went back, cut up the bear and brought back the meat. leaving the offal to l!e devoured by buzzards and foxes. "It's better to be born lucky than sensible, I .. uabed BP.A. u he picked up his load. "It was just sheer lac.It that sent those fellows across that bear." It was time after supper and quite dark. and Jack Warren, on picket at the edge o f the eanip, 'lieard some one approaching on horseback. "Halt!" he cried. "Who goes there?" "A friend!" answered a voice. "All right, Henry Clinton. Come right in," laughed Jack. It was Henry indeed, but not dressed as a boy this time. She rode into the camp, dismounted, tethered her horse and said: "I want to see the captain. It is important." "You always seem to bring important news," and Jack gave a signal which brought up two or three boys. "Take the young lady to Dick's tent," Jack said. Dick came out as Henry and the boys approached and said: "I am glad to see you. You bring news?" "Yes. The Queen's Rangers, Donop's Yagers and Delan cey Refugees are going to make a raid in this very neighborhood in the morning.'' We will be ready for them," said Dick. CHAPTER VII. A Hot • Chase After tke Raide'TB. The intended raid was to be a more extended one than those which the Liberty Boys had prevented. Dick saw that it would need more than his gallant fellows to keep the raiders in check, therefore. ' Learning from Henry as many of the particulars as she had been able to pick up, Dick determined to go to General Scott' s quarters at once and acquaint him with the facts. General Scott was at this time at Valentine's Hill, on the west side of Mile Square, and thither Dick went without de lay, taking Bob and a goodly party of the Liberty Boys. Mark and the rest were to follow early the next morn• ing. It was quite late now, and Dick wished to send some one back with Henry. She said she could get home alone, and it would be better not to send any of the boys with her. She went away alone, therefore, and Dick set out around the bills to get to the general's quarters. The longer road was the best in this case, and the boys made rapid progress. They arri:ved at daybreak, and Dick at once made known his errand. The expedition was to go up the Hudson on the east bank, keeping along the shore. A detachment of infantry, under Colonel Richard Butler, and one of cavalry,. under Major Henry Lee, were at once despatched to check the marauders. By the time they were ready, soon after sunrise, the rest of the Liberty Boys arrived. They had come by another route and, on the way had heard news of the passing of a party of Hessians bound up the river. The whole detachment hurrted forward, and at Yonkers village beard that the marauding party had gone to Dobba' Ferry. The Hessians and Rangers had been blundering the people, taking not only their provisions and forage, but the very clothes from their backs. The Liberty Boys and their allies pushed on with all speed and something above Dobbs Ferry came upon the marauders. They were right in the midst of their plundering when the patriots burst suddenly upon them. Catching the scoundrels redhanded, Major Lee at once charged and fired a volley. Ten of the Hessians were killed upon the spot and a score captured. The rest took to instant flight, pursued by the Boys. The wildness of the country impeded the action of the cavalry, for the Yagers and Hessians speedily took to the woods and ravines. "Dismount and after them, Liberty Boys I" cried Dick. ''Down with them! Don't let them escape!" "Rout them out, Captain!" cried Major Lee to Dick. "Hunt them t.o their lair, like rataf'


Tl1E LIBERTY BOYS OF '78. • . . The greater part. o f the T:,iberty Boys gave chase. A number of the smaller, weaker and less active boys re mained behind to look after the horses. Dick, Bob and Mark led three parties and divided the territory between them. With Mark were Jack, Will, the two Harrys and a score or more of brave fellows. Following Bob were Ben, Sam, Patsy, Carl and a lot more, all strong, hardy boys, and as brave as lions. Dick Jtad a good party with him, and the three, keeping reasonably close to each other, were sure to cover the ground very thoroughly. They plunged at once into the hills and woods, horses being of little use here. They were all well used to . scrambling over rocks, toiling up hills or descending ravines, and the maurauders would be put to it to escape, once the plucky fellows got upon their track. They were used to fighting in the woods, having fought with the Indians and Tories in the Mohawk Valley, and carried on a running warfare in the northern woods on the retreat from Ticonderoga. They could fight in the open and they could adopt backwoods methods and fire behind trees, stumps, rocks or fences. With such resolute enemies arrayed against them, the Hessians and Yagers were hard put to it to escape. Their enemies were hirelings., . pJ:'.ofessional soldiers, let out to the highest bidder , and the Yagers were the most cruel, treacherous and inhuman of all the foreign mer cenaries. Into the woods dashed the Hessians and Yagers, the Liberty Boys closely following. Dick's party came upon a lot of the enemy as they were scrambling up a high ledge, where the trees grew thick and were heavily leaved. It was like twilight in the place. The green uniforms of some of the fugitives helped them to escape, as they could scarcely be told from the leaves in the obscurity. Those who wore the scarlet coats were more easily dis tinguished. "Pick them off, boys!" cried Dick. "The scoundrels deserve no mercy." Crack--crack--crack! Muskets and pistols rattled and cracked and echoed through the woods. Now and then a crashing among the underbrush and the fall of a heavy body showed that one of the enemy had been hit. The Yagers and Hessians threw away their hats and muskets, and even their coats, as being too cumbersome. They retained their pistols, however, and now and then a party of them would make a stand and fire upon "' the boys. The fire of the boys was delivered from behind trees and rocks and was generally effective. The Hessians and Yagers, however, accustomed to fight ing in the open, made their stands in exposed places and in close column. This exposed them to the fire of the boys, who were scattered here and there and protected by the trees. In a few cases the enemy would adont similar methods, i>ut more f1•equently would fire lrom the open, thas exposing themselves. Reaching the summit of the ledge, they massed them selves and prepared to make a stubborn defense. Dodging from tree to tree, and from rock to rock, the plucky boys kept on firing a shot whenever they saw a mark. Asrending at different points, they nearly surrounded the enemy when they at last got to the top. The n they poured in a volley, and many o! the Hessians and Yagers were wounded. Perceiving their danger, the enemy fled, escaping by the only avenue left open, but which would shortly have been closed had they remained. Across a level span they rushed and went plunging down a ravine. Some jumped from ledge to ledge; some stumbled and fell and some rolled. the upper bank of the i-aviue boJS poured a volley upon them and few escaped hurts of some sort. Dick then halted his boys to allow them to reload, and then, while some went along the top of the ravine and fired upon the Hessians and Yagers held the rest prepared to descend. There was no danger of the boys hitting their comrades and no one feared such a danger. Meantime Bob and his boys chased a party of the enemy to a tumble-down Jog cabin on the edge of a ravine. Here the Hessians took shelter and opened fire upon the boys from the windows. "Drive them out!" said Bob. "Set fire to the place! They have no regard for others, so we need have none for them." . Sheltering themselves behind trees and rocks, some of the boys now cut pine torches and set them on fire. A sudden volley was fired upon the Hessians in the cabin, which drove them inside. Then the boys with the torches suddenly dashed for ward, hurling them upon the roof and throug h the win dows and thrusting them into the holes between the logs. Then they ran to shelter behind nearer trees and opened fire as the Hessians ran out to pull away the torc hes. Those on . the roof quickly ignited the thatch and clouds of smoke began to roll up. Some had not been detached from the s i des of the cabin and the fire began to spread rapidly and furiously. The rear line of boys now advanced and took up positions nearer to the cabin, firing in at the open window s . Threatened by a double danger, the Hes sians and Yagers retreated by the rear door of the cabin and went scrambling down the ravine. CHAPTER VIII. Scattering the Hessians. Dashing forward, some into . the cabin and some around the sides, Bob Estabrook and his gallant lads fairly drove the enemy into the ravine. Some were hit and went rolling down, their muskets making a great clattering as they bounded from rock to rock. Some slipped and fell and went tumbling down at the risk of broken arms or legs. Scurrying into the ravine, the enemy sought shelter behind trees and rocks, under bushes or in holes among the rocks. The cabin was destroyed, many burning fragments fall ing into the ravine among the dry leaves and brush, thus further increasing the peril of the enemy. "They deserve to be smoked out, the miserable sneaks and thieves!" sputtered Bob, angrily. The flames drove some of the enemy from their hic!!ng places and forced them to seek shelter elsewhere. Some descended to the stream at the bottom and waded through it. Others crawled from rock to rock, kee-pine: out or nanra way and making no attempt to offer res1stam .. -e. dats, coats, pistols, rnusket.!I. belts, knapsacks and other accountrements were scattered over the roe.ts tr;m M>p to the bottom of the ravine. "Some of them even tried to carry their plunder with them, I see," observed Ben Spurlock, "but were forced to give it up." "They are natural thieves," declared Sam . "I saw one fellow actually strip a worthless, old coat from a man's bac k and make off with it." "Sure they'd take the coppers from the eyes av a dead man!" sputtered Patsy. "An' that's the manest kind av a thafe!" Bob did not take his boys down into the ravine, as it was a hazardous undertaking, to begin with, rendered more so by the fire. "There would be no particular satisfaction in hunting the Hessians out of their holes, like a lot of woodchucks;" said Bob, "and I am not going to risk you boys on account of any such wretches as the:ie."


I 10 THE LIBERTY BOYS OF '76.r "They'll all get away in time," declared Bob, "and I'll i the ravine to the point where they had first encountered warrant it will be a lesson to most of them." the enem y. "I don't think you will find many of them going on Bo b and his party, hurrying on in the direction of the such maraud," added Sam, "for even their dull came upon Dick and his band, drhing a lot of mtelhgence can comprehend the natural results." Hessians through the ravine. "They're a pretty frightened lot of scoundrels," contin-They at once joined hi m, keeping up a running fire ued Bob, "and wwe 'll Jet it go at that. You won't see one of from the top of the ravine upon the enemy. them around here by to-morrow." "There's not much safety in taking to the woods where Hearing firing in anotlwr direction, Bob now . stopped the Liberty Boys are concerned,'' sputtered Bob. merely long enoug h to allow the boys to reload and then "No, for that is our natural fighting ground," replied hurried away. Ben. Mark Morrison, the plucky second lieutenant, with Jack 1iar1:1ssed and hunted by the determined boys, the Hes-Warren, Will Freeman, the two Harrys and the rest, at once sians and Yagers sought safety in the most inacessible drove a party of Yagers, Hessians and Cowboys into a deep places, and it was a day or more before s ome of them ravjne leading to the river. crept out, worn and haggard, and thoroughly impressed "After them boys!" cried Mark. Give 'em fits! Drive with the spirit of the brave boys. them into the rive r , anywhere!" They were not likely, the most of them, to forget the The boys were thoroughly indignant at the disgraceful lesso n they had learned, and some of them deserted and conduct of the raiders and were determined to give them fled to the upper counties, where they settled down and a most summary punishment. became p eaceful, if not the best, sort of citizens. Firing a volley, they drove the enemy right into the At length, havingdriven the enemy like sheep before ra'l(\ne and then pursued them relentlessly. them and seeing few signs of Hessians or Yagers, the They had seen so many acts of cruelty and treachery pluck boys retraced their step s and returned to the road. on the part of these fellows that they lost all patience and Before lon g they were joined by Mark and his boys, were resolved to give a lesson which would be long remem-who reported the utter rout of the enemy. bered. "It will be a long time before another such disgrace-Close to Mark was Jack and right behind him were Will ful raid is made by these foreign mercenaries," said Dick. and the two Harrys. "And in the meantime we've got these Queen Rangers The rest were near enough to form a firm body, and on to look after," added Bob. they pushed, over rocks and fallen trees, teai:ing through "Very true," wa:s reply. "And we need show underbrush and leaping brooks, keeping straight on after them. no more than we have shown these the_, fleeing enemy. Hessian s and Yagers. . . . Now and then a Hessian would turn to fire at the reso-1 . Colonel Butler and Lee. Dick and the lute boys, only to be made a target for their pistols. Liberty boys most heartily for dr1vmg off th: marauders , Once a giant Hessian suddenly sprang up from behind a and then they all mounted and rode off to their camp. rock and rushed at Mark, with his musket uplifted. Jack dashed in upon the fellew instantly and brought his

11 "See here, Bill," said Dick. "There are redcoats about, but if you raise an alarm or betray me, the next time I see you I'll give you a worse thrashing than you ever had, and I have given you some pretty severe ones." ha' telled yer," said young Hank, "an' I gotter have some o' the reward." "Take him ter ther tavern an' toss up," suggested Jones. "Yus, an' I'll settle wi t h ye fur 'em one o' these days!" snarled Bill. "You'll get one now if you don't clear out," said Dick, and Bill hurried a cross and up the road at a good pace. Both the Hessians and Rangers agreed to this. There were no officers, not even a corporal, present, and the proceeding was clearly irregular. . However, Dick was taken to the taxern and l o cked up m a rear room on the upper. floor, Major bein"' put in Farther on Dick saw a camp of Queen's Rangers. the barn belonging to the house. . " "So, the Loyalists are h e rP still, are they?" he said. "We have not finished with Simcoe and his brave marau-ders and we may raid them a g a i n before long." Then the soldiers and Jones sat down in the general room and Jones said: As he rode on a hulking, overgrown boy peered from the door of a n;,t overreputable dri:iking place and mut tered: "H'm! There goes Dick Slater, ther rebel. I wouldn't ha' ln1owed him, but I kno w thet boss." T h e boy was Han k Jone s and his father was in the groggery at that moment, drinking punch anp smoking a long pipe. "Ef I c'n git word to ther sogers," muttered young Hank, "it won't be so e asy fur M r . Di c k Slater." He thlm hurri ed in s ide and wh.ispered to his father: "Say, dad, Dick Slater has just went by, toward ther bridge." "He has?" muttered Jones, starting. "Go arter ther sogers, Hank." "Mebbe they won't b'lieve m e , dad. Bill t old ' e m Di c k Slater was 'round t'other day an' they didn't ketch h i m an' said Bill was !yin'." Jones looked out of the window and muttered: "Yus, that's h i m . Hey, Gil e s , send some un an' tell ther sogers thet Dick Slater, ther rebel, is 'round." "H'm! Soldiers don ' t patro nize me, and why sh ould I do favors .for them?" snarled the landlord. "Let them find out for themselves. They neve r show the col o r of gold or silver or even copper in my house." "Then I'll go arter them myself," growled Jones, ris ing. "You haven't paid your score, I supp'lse you know?" "Well, I'm goin' to pay it, ain't I?" with a growl, taking some silver tied up in a very dirty handkerchief from his breeches pocket. "Indeed you are, Mr. Jones," with a grin. Jones counted out some silver and a few coppers and snarled: "There et is, and et's the last time I'll come here." "Till the next time," with a laugh. "And if you didn't it's no loss. You don't add any to the reputation of the house.'' Jones snarled, jumped upon a horse tethered at the side of the house and galloped up the road. It was half an hour later when Dick returned. He had b een as far a s the bridge and had noticed a certain activity among the troops. This would mean one of two things, either that they were preparing for another raid in lower Westchester or they were goin g back to New York. He could not learn which of these reasons for the bustle he saw was the real one, but he had learned enough to know that the Liberty Boys must be on the alert. Opp osite the groggery he had seen a thick clump bushes and trees. Dick never rod e clo se to such places, and he now took the opposite side of the road. He was passing the place rwhen he saw a movement among the b us h e s and suspected an ambua h. He im med i a t ely u r ged Maj J r forward as a number of Hessia n s spmn g o u t and fire d at h i m. The n, 1rom ano t he r direction, ca: n e J ones and a party of Queen'!:' Rangers. Dic k t r ied to dash off to one s i

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