Saturday, November 24, 2012

Edward Braddock, described by Mrs. Bellamy

Edward Braddock--the first British general to fight on the North American continent.  His army was defeated and himself killed in the Battle on the Monongahela.  In the years following the battle, Braddock has not been portrayed well.  He appears as a brutal, self-confident general.

One person, however, knew and was known by Braddock very well: the actress Mrs. George Anne Bellamy.  She had, as she says, "been known from my infancy" by General Braddock.

She gives this interesting account:

"This great man having been often reproached with brutality, I am induced to recite the following little accident, which evidently shews the contrary.
"As we were walking in the Park one day, we heard a poor fellow was to be chastised; when I requested the General to beg off the offender.  Upon his application to the general officer, whose name was Drury, he asked Braddock, How long since he had divested himself of brutality, and of the insolence of his manners?  To which the other replied, "You never knew me insolent to my inferiors.  It is only to such rude men as yourself, that I behave with the spirit which I think they deserve."--pg. 29, volume 3, An Apology for the Life of Mrs. George Anne Bellamy, found here

Not only does Mrs. Bellamy recount that Braddock was not as brutal as he seemed, she even writes in a stated effort to dispel the idea!

1 comment:

  1. This is cool! I have heard Braddock described as being a tough disciplinarian with his men and rather arrogent with the colonials, but I haven't heard any other particular reasons why he was identified as "brutal", such as the scenarios given with Cumberland and Hawley. This is nice little anecdote to balance out the picture of the man.