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  168
  THE CELTIC MONTHLY
  British right with such impetuosity that it
  wavered. General Fraser noticing the critical
  situation of the centre hurried to its succour the
  24lh Regiment. Dressed in full uniform, General
  Fraser was conspicuously mounted on an iron
  grey horse. He was all activity and vigilance,
  riding from one part of the division to another,
  and animated the troops with his example. At
  a critical point, Morgan, who, with his riflemen
  was immediately oppcsite to Fraser's corps,
  jierceiving that the fate of the day rested upon
  that officer, called a few of his sharp-shooters
  aside, among whom was the famous marksman,
  Tim Murphy, men on whose precision of aim he
  could rely, and said to them, '• That gallant
  officer yonder is General Fraser ; I admire and
  respect him, but it is necessary for our good that
  he should die. Take your station in that cluster
  of bushes and do your duty " A few moments
  later, a rifle ball cut the crouper of Fraser's
  horse, and another passed through the horse's
  mane. Fraser's aid, catling attention to this,
  said : " It is evident that you are marked out
  for particular aim ; would it not be prudent for
  you to retire from this place? " Fraser replied,
  "My duty forbids me to fly from danger." The
  next moment he fell wounded by a ball from the
  rifle of Murphy, and was canied off the field by
  two grenadiers. After he was wounded fi'raser
  told his friends " that he saw the man who shot
  him, and that he was a rifleman posted in a tree."
  From this it would appear that after Morgan
  had given his orders Murphy climbed into the
  forks of a convenient tree.
  Upon the fall of Fraser, dismay seized the
  British. A retreat took place exactly fifty-two
  minutes after the first shot was fired. Burgoyne
  left the cannon on the field, except two howit-
  zers, besides sustaining a loss of more than four
  hundred men, and among them the flower of his
  officers. Contemjiorary military writers affirmed
  that had Fraser lived the Bi-itish would have
  made good their retreat into Canada. It is
  claimed that he would have caused Burgoyne to
  have avoided the blunders which finally resulted
  in hi.s surrender.
  The closing scene of General Fraser'.s life has
  been graphically described by Madame Kiedesel,
  wife of the German General. It has been oft
  quoted, but Is here given again: "All at once,
  on the 7th of October, he (Riedesel) marched
  away with the whole staff, and then our misfor-
  tunes began. While breakfasting with my
  husband, I heard that something was under
  contemplation. General Fraser, and I believe.
  Generals Burgoyne and Phillips were to dine
  with me on that day. I remarked much move-
  ment in the camp. My husband told me that it
  was a mere reconnaissance, which, however, did
  not surpri.se me, us this oflen happened Oil
  my way homeward I met a number of Indians
  armed with guns, and clad in their war dresses.
  Having asked them where they were going,
  they replied, ' War, war;' by which they meant
  they were about to fight. 'This made me very
  uneasy, and I had scarcely got home, before I
  heard reports of guns ; and soon the fire became
  brisker, till at last the noise grew dreadful, upon
  which I was more dead than alive. About three
  o'clock in the afternoon, instead of guests whom
  I had exjjected to cline with me, I saw one of
  them, poor General Fraser, brought upon a litter,
  mortally wounded. The table, which was
  already prepared for dinner, was immediately
  removed, and a bed jilaced in its stead for the
  General. I sat terrified and trembling in a
  corner. The noise grew more alarming, and I
  was in a continual agony and tremor, while
  thinking that my husband might soon be brought
  in, wounded like General Fraser. That poor
  general said to the surgeon, ' Tell me the tiuth :
  is there no hope?' The ball had passed through
  his body, but unhappily for the general, he had
  that morning eaten a full breakfast, by which
  the stomach was distended, and the ball, as the
  surgeon remarked, passed directly through it.
  I heard often amidst his groans, such words as
  these, ' Oh, fatal ambition ! poor General Bur-
  goyne ! my poor wife ! ' Prayers were read,
  after which he desired that General Burgoyne
  should be requested to have him buried on the
  next day at six o'clock in the evening, on a hill
  where a breastwork had been constructed. I
  knew not what to do ; the entrance and all the
  rooms were full of sick, in consequence of the
  dysentery which prevailed in the camp. . . .
  I divided the night between her (Lady Ackland)
  whom I wished to comfort, and my children who
  were asleep, but who, I feared, might disturb
  the poor dying general. He sent several
  messages to beg my pardon for the trouble he
  thought he gave me. About three o'clock, I
  was informed that he could not live much longer,
  and as I did not wish to be present at his last
  struggle, I wrapped my children in blankets, and
  retired into the entrance hall. At eight o'clock
  in the morning he expired.
  " After he had been washed, he was wrapped
  in a sheet and laid out. We then returned into
  the room, and had this melancholy spectacle
  before us the whole day. Many officers of my
  acquaintance were brought in wounded, and the
  cannonade continued. There was some talk of
  retreating, but I saw no indications of it. About
  four o'clock in the afternoon, I saw the house
  which had been built for me, in flames, from
  which I inferred that the enemy was near. We
  were informed that General Burgoyne intended
  to comply with General Fraser's last reque.st,
  and to have him buried at six o'clock, in the

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