This morning part of the second divisions of the troops from New York arrived; but they had fallen in with three French men of war
and some frigates in their passage, who took five or six transport
s with about 500 men: a great loss at this time; but would have been much greater had the French acted with vigour and judgment.
August 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10th
All these days we were employed in finishing the batteries on the Cavannes hill; carrying cannon and stores to them; and as plank was wanted, the Admiral directed one of the prize frigates to be immediately ripped up, which supply’d us with platforms. Her very beams being fawed up. Water was kept constantly passing from the other side in vessels to us at the expence of the lives of many poor seamen, who were obliged to be day and night filling for the navy as well as for us. Some men of war
were sent down with many transport
s to Mariel
, who for want of men were not able to be longer ventmed on this most open and frightful coast, and where the Spaniards, expressed their surprise and dread at feeing such a fleet ride so long in such a season. I will not mention any more the melancholy situation we were in, but veil over so serious and so shocking scene by the glorious close of this very long, very fatiguing, and very destructive siege.
The 10th, as our batteries were all compleat, Lord Albemarle sum moned the city to surrender, but the Governor refused.
A day-break the enemy was saluted from the Cavannes hill, which consisted of 43 pieces of cannon, 12 mortars & etc. Three of these batteries were fought by seamen, who soon silenced the Puntal, and made a practicable breach in it.
About noon the enemy was near silenced the Puntal, and made a practicable breach in it.
About noon the enemy was near silenced on every battery; and about three in the afternoon, flags of truce were thrown out from all quarters of the town; a parley beat, and firing ceased. The Governor then sent the Town-major and other officers to our headquarters, with proposal for 24 hours cessation of arms, in order to fix upon articles of capitulation.
This was agreed to by the Admiral and General; and after some messages.
August 12, 13, 14, and 15th
The morning of the 13th produced those articles of capitulation which gave us possession of town and port of the Havana
, with 180 miles eastwar
d of the town; and all that track of Land to the westwar
d which terminates the island of Cuba on that side. Nine ships
of the line, of 74 and 64 guns, and two very large ones on the stocks, near compleat; about 25 loaded merchant ships
; near three million of dollars belonging to the King and Royal Company, about 600 pieces of cannon in the town and forts; great magazines of stores and merchandizes of all kinds. But the most grateful at this time was, that it furnished us with fresh provisions, rest, and shelter, for the many thousands poor sick wretches we had in our camp and hospital-ships
, all mouldering away for want of nourishment when their disorders had left them.
Our battalion is so weak that we have not above 150 men fit for duty. I am told the navy is badly off. Our loss of killed and wounded is very trifling, in comparasion of that of the enemy. Theirs amounts to upwar
ds of 6000 killed and dead of their wounds since, and of sickness. Our men of war
are now going into the harbour, notwithstanding the enemy’s three ships
sunk (and one of the company’s ship overset) at the entrance. English colours are flying on board all the Spanish ships
, which is as pleasing and reviving a prospect to us, as I hope it will prove a glorious and beneficial acquisition to England.