Who Was the Commander at Bunker Hill?

20 The author omits, in his extracts from Adams’s letter, far the most interesting and important part of it, as it regards the subject, and especially Putnam’s claims. Adams thinks his objections to the legality of the army extend to it, and to Washington, when he took command. Now, this fortunately gives us the conclusive authority of Washington, to show that all these legal subtleties are of no practical importance. Adams doubts whether the army was sufficiently organized to authorize Washington to try by courts-martial the delinquents in the battle. But Washington did not hesitate a moment to cut this Gordian knot. He brought Mansfield, Gerrish, Scammans, and all other delinquents, before courts- martial ; and made Gen. Greene, of Rhode Island, the president of them, as if for the express purpose of declaring his opinion, that this colonial question did not affect in the slightest degree the organization of the army, or the authority and liabilities of the officers. Our author labors to make out an argument against Putnam’s command, by showing that there was more legality and intimacy in the connection of the New Hampshire troops with the rest of the army, than in that of the troops from Connecticut. So complete was the union of the Connecticut troops with the rest of the army, that Putnam could not obtain Ward’s permission to lake the Connecticut regiment to Charlestown the niarht before the battle, though he strenuously urged it. The most he could obtain was two hundred of them; and they were placed under the command of Prescott, who had likewise a company from New Hampshire (Capt. Dow’s) under his command. Could any thing be more conclusive as to the consolidation of the army ? We have the pay-rolls of New Hampshire to prove, that her troops were adopted and paid by her from the first moment they went to Cambridge. On the side of Connecticut this union was not onfy expressed by the manner in which their officers were detailed for duty by Ward ; but he placed under the immediate command of Putnam, Patterson’s Massachusetts and Sargent’s New Hampshire regiments, in addition to one from Connecticut, at Inman’s Farm,