Letters from DU BUYSSON des Hays, Charles-Francois,
Le Chevalier, Lt.Col., aide-de-camp of Gen. DeKalb

These letters are found on page 189-191 of Kennedy & Kirkland, Historic Camden

Charlotte Aug 26th 1780.

To Generals Smallwood and Gist:

Having received several wounds in the action of the sixteenth instant, I was made prisoner with the honorable Major-General the Baron de Kalb, with whom I served as aide-de-camp and friend, and had an opportunity of attending that great and good officer, during the short time he languished with eleven wounds, which proved mortal on the third day.

It is with pleasure I obey the Baron's last commands, in presenting his most affectionate compliments to all the officers and men of his division; he expressed the greatest satisfaction in the testimony given by the British army of the bravery of his troops, and he was charmed with the firm opposition they made to superior force when abandoned by the rest of the army. The gallant behaviour of the Delaware regiment and the companies of artillery attached to the brigade, afforded him infinite pleasure, and the exemplary conduct of the whole division gave him an endearing sense of the merit of the troops he had the honor to command.

I am dear generals
Your most obedient humble servant


[To unknown addressee:]

Hillsboro Sept. 2nd 1780.


The Baron DeKalb, taken by the British and mortally wounded, desired me to repair immediately to Philadelphia, to give, in his name, to Congress, a full account of his transactions relative to his command of the Maryland and Delaware line, since his departure from Pennsylvania, to clear his memory of every false or malignant insinuation, which might have been made by some invidious persons, but as my wounds do not permit me to travel as fast as I could desire, I thought it convenient to acquaint you, Sir, of my repairing to Congress with all the baron's papers and accounts, that no measure be taken towards this affair before my arrival in Philadelphia, which will be as speedily as possible.

The Baron DeKalb, deserted by all the militia, who fled at the first fire, withstood with the greatest bravery, coolness and intrepidity, with the brave Marylanders alone, the furious charge of the whole British army; but superior bravery was obliged at length to yield to superior numbers, and the baron, having had his horse killed under him, fell into the hands of the enemy, pierced with eight wounds of bayonets and three musket balls. I stood by the baron during the action and shared his fate, being taken by his side, wounded in both arms and hands. Lord Cornwallis and Rawdon treated us with the greatest civility. The baron, dying of his wounds two days after the action, was buried with all the honors of war, and his funeral attended by all the officers of the British army. The doctor having reported to Lord Cornwallis the impossibility of curing my wounds in that part of the continent, he admitted me to my parole, to go to Philadelphia for effecting an exchange between me and Lieut.-Col. Hamilton &c.