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The account given by Vicars of the state of the defences was scarcely more flattering. He reported that the principal fort had no cannon on the side most exposed to attack. Two pieces had been mounted on the trading-house in the centre; but as the concussion shook down stones from the wall whenever they were fired, they had since been removed. The second work, called Fort Ontario, he had not seen since it was finished, having been too ill to cross the river. Of the third, called New Oswego, or "Fort Rascal," he testifies thus: "It never was finished, and there were no loopholes in the stockades; so that they could not fire out of the fort but by opening the gate and firing out of that." V1 the camp, and found the General waiting restlessly for the report of the agents whom he had sent to collect wagons. "I stayed with him," says Franklin, "several days, and dined with him daily. When I was about to depart, the returns of wagons to be obtained were brought in, by which it appeared that they amounted only to twenty-five, and not all of these were in serviceable condition." On this the General and his officers declared that the expedition was at an end, and denounced the Ministry for sending them into a country void of the means of transportation. Franklin remarked that it was a pity they had not landed in Pennsylvania, where almost every farmer had his wagon. Braddock caught eagerly at his words, and begged that he would use his influence to enable the troops to move. Franklin went back to Pennsylvania, issued an address to the farmers appealing to their interest and their fears, and in a fortnight procured a hundred and fifty wagons, with a large number of horses.  Braddock, grateful to his benefactor, and enraged at everybody else, pronounced him "Almost the only instance of ability and honesty I have known in these provinces."  More wagons and more horses gradually arrived, and at the eleventh hour the march began.
From the moment when the Canadians found a chief whom they could trust, and the firm old hand of Frontenac grasped the reins of their destiny, a spirit of hardihood and energy grew up in all this rugged population; and they faced their stern fortunes with a stubborn daring and endurance that merit respect and admiration.
The burly one brushed by, his foolish eyes looking everywhere but at them, his mouth pursed up to whistle.
His first and chief task was to finish the work that Frontenac had shaped out, and bring the Iroquois to such submission as the interests of the colony and its allies demanded. The fierce confederates admired the late governor, and, if they themselves are to be believed, could not help lamenting him; but they were emboldened by his death, and the difficulty of dealing with them was increased by it. Had they been sure of effectual support from the English, there can be little doubt that they would have refused to treat with the French, of whom their distrust was extreme. The treachery of Denonville at Fort Frontenac still rankled in their hearts, and the English had made them believe that some of their best men had lately been poisoned by agents from Montreal. The French assured them, on the other hand, that the English meant to poison them, refuse to sell them powder and lead, and then, when they were helpless, fall upon and destroy them. At Montreal, they were told that the English called them their negroes; and, at Albany, that if they made peace with Onontio, they would sink into "perpetual infamy 440 and slavery." Still, in spite of their perplexity, they persisted in asserting their independence of each of the rival powers, and played the one against the other, in order to strengthen their position with both. When Bellomont required them to surrender their French prisoners to him, they answered: "We are the masters; our prisoners are our own. We will keep them or give them to the French, if we choose." At the same time, they told Callires that they would bring them to the English at Albany, and invited him to send thither his agents to receive them. They were much disconcerted, however, when letters were read to them which showed that, pending the action of commissioners to settle the dispute, the two kings had ordered their respective governors to refrain from all acts of hostility, and join forces, if necessary, to compel the Iroquois to keep quiet.  This, with their enormous losses, and their desire to recover their people held captive in Canada, led them at last to serious thoughts of peace. Resolving at the same time to try the temper of the new Onontio, and yield no more than was absolutely necessary, they sent him but six ambassadors, and no prisoners. The ambassadors marched in single file to the place of council; while their chief, who led the way, sang a dismal song of lamentation for the French slain in the war, calling on them to thrust their heads above ground, behold the good work 441 of peace, and banish every thought of vengeance. Callires proved, as they had hoped, less inexorable than Frontenac. He accepted their promises, and consented to send for the prisoners in their hands, on condition that within thirty-six days a full deputation of their principal men should come to Montreal. The Jesuit Bruyas, the Canadian Maricourt, and a French officer named Joncaire went back with them to receive the prisoners.When Monckton and the Massachusetts men laid siege to Beausjour, Governor Lawrence thought the moment favorable for exacting an unqualified oath of allegiance from the Acadians. The presence of a superior and victorious force would help, he thought, to bring them to reason; and there were some indications that this would be the result. A number of Acadian families, who at the promptings of Le Loutre had emigrated to Cape Breton, had lately returned to Halifax, promising to be true subjects of King George if they could be allowed to repossess their lands. They cheerfully took the oath; on which they were reinstated in their old homes, and supplied with food for the winter.  Their example unfortunately found few imitators.
"If there were no conditions."And counts the numbers of their slain
V2 St. Charles in canoes to the town. Bougainville followed close with a larger supply. Vaudreuil sent Ramesay a message, revoking his order to surrender if threatened with assault, telling him to hold out to the last, and assuring him that the whole army was coming to his relief. Lvis hastened to be gone; but first he found time to write a few lines to Bourlamaque. "We have had a very great loss, for we have lost M. de Montcalm. I regret him as my general and my friend. I found our army here. It is now on the march to retrieve our fortunes. I can trust you to hold your position; as I have not M. de Montcalm's talents, I look to you to second me and advise me. Put a good face on it. Hide this business as long as you can. I am mounting my horse this moment. Write me all the news." The king accepted the plan with modifications, which complicated and did not improve it. Extreme precautions were taken to insure secrecy; but the vast distances, the difficult navigation, and the accidents of weather appear to have been forgotten in this amended scheme of operation. There was, moreover, a long delay in fitting the two ships for sea. The wind was ahead, and they were fifty-two days in reaching Chedabucto, at the eastern end of Nova Scotia. Thence Frontenac and Callires had orders to proceed in a merchant ship to Quebec, which might require a month more; and, on arriving, they were to prepare for the expedition, while at the same time Frontenac was to send back a letter to the naval commander at Chedabucto, revealing the plan to him, and ordering him to sail to New York to co-operate in it. It was the twelfth of September when Chedabucto was reached, and the enterprise was ruined by the delay. Frontenac's first step in his new government was a failure, though one for which he was in no way answerable.