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A single man and without killing any of the enemy. After sufficiently working on the fears of the natives, Clark told them they were at perfect liberty to worship as they pleased, and to take whichever side of the great conflict they would; also he would protect them against any barbarity from British or Indian foe. The had the desired effect; and the inhabitants, so unexpectedly and so gratefully surprised by the unlooked for turn of affairs, at once swore allegiance to the American arms; and when Clark desired togo to Cahokia on the 6th of July, they accompanied him, and through their influence the inhabitants of the place surrendered and gladly placed themselves under his protection.

In the person of M. Gibault, priest of Kaskaskia, Clark found a powerful ally and generous friend. Clark saw that, to retain possession of the Northwest and treat successfully with the Indians, he must establish a government for the colonies he had taken. St. Vincent, the post next in importance to Detroit, remained yet to be taken before the Mississippi valley was conquered. M. Gibault told him that he would alone, by persuasion, lead Vincennes to throw off its connection with England. Clark gladly accepted this offer, and July 14th, in company with a fellow- townsman, Gibault started on his mission of peace. On the 1st of August he returned with the cheerful intelligence that everything was peaceably adjusted at Vincennes in favor of the Americans. During the interval, Col. Clark established his courts, placed garrisons at Kaskaskia and Cohokia, successfully re-enlisted his men, and sent word to have a for (which proved the germ of Louisville) erected at the falls of the Ohio.

While the American commander was thus negotiating with the Indians, Hamilton, the British Governor of Detroit, heard of Clark's invasion, and was greatly incensed because the country which he had in charge should be wrested from him by a few ragged militia. He therefore hurriedly collected a force, arched by way of the Wabash, and appeared before the fort at Vincennes. The inhabitants made an effort to defend the town, and when Hamilton's forces arrived, Captain Helm and a man named Henry were the only Americans in the fort. These men had been sent by Clark. The latter charged a cannon and placed it in the open gateway, and the Captain stood by it with a lighted match and cried out, as Hamilton came in hailing distance, 'Halt!' The British officer, not

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Submitted: 01/18/08

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