made a false step by saying they would stop overnight further on, with either
Colonel Gilbert Drake1 or Major Joseph Strang, both of Boyd's regiment. At this
Boyd must have suspected him, for he told him Strang was absent, and Drake
removed to another town. He represented the danger of travelling White Plains-
ward by night as so great, because of a band of § Cowboys " known to be within
the lines, that Smith's fears were aroused2 (probably also by Boyd's evident suspicions of him), and he agreed to stop at a house nearby. Andre, to whom the
marauders were far more likely to be friends than foes, and who was depressed by
his anomalous and dangerous position, disguised and in the enemy's country, was
naturally anxious to push ahead. But Smith carried his point, and they went back
to Andreas Miller's house,3 on the south side of the road, about one-third of a mile east of Hog Lane (an existing road now bearing the more euphonious but
absurd name of "Lexington Avenue") and just over the boundary line in the
town of Yorktown (Peekskill is in the town of Cortland). Miller's accommodations for travellers were decidedly limited—apparently to one bed, which Smith
shared with Andre, who went to bed in his boots, not even removing his spurs, and spent the time in restless weariness, disturbing Smith's slumbers. The
dwelling4 has disappeared, save the foundation and a few timbers. A growth of young locust trees and flowering shrubs surrounds the spot, and some search is
required to find it. Before dawn—Saturday, the twenty-third—the trio were again in the
saddle, and rode to a point half a mile east of the Presbyterian church,5 at
Crompond Corner. By this time Andr6 had recovered his spirits, as though
feeling entirely safe, and displayed to the full those accomplishments of mind and
manner which had invariably charmed all who met him, and which had their
effect on Smith. At the Corner, in the angle made by the junction, from the north, of the Somerstown road, stood a tavern known as Strang's6 (or Mead's).
Near it, the three riders were suddenly halted by a picket-guard, and detained
1 One account has lieutenant Colonel Delavan instead of Drake.
2 If Smith.suspected Andrews real character, he knew there could not be much danger from these marauders;
but, on the other hand, his Whig reputation would be endangered by the very fact, if they were met, and
yet suffered nothing by the meeting. He was, in short, trying to '' run with the hare and hunt with the
hounds." It was more prudent to allay Boyd's suspicions by staying over night—but the delay was fatal
to Andre' the next day.
3 Marked 2 on the map. Smith's Narrative is clearly misleading here, when he speaks of going "back some
miles, to a tavern kept by one McKoy." At his trial, Captain Boyd testified that Miller's house was
* In the case of this house tradition has especial value, as there is but one life between 1780 and 1898. In 1784 the
dwelling was sold to John Strang, son of Major Joseph, and a new one took its place. In 1795 this was
bought by Abraham Requa, a soldier of the Westchester militia, of much active service. His son Edmund
inherited it, and his grandson Amos C. was born in it. The son of Edmund, and grandson of Abraham,
Rev. Amos C. Requa, lives in Peekskill,. and is. my authority for identifying the house.
5 Marked 4 on the map. The edifice itself was not then standing, for on June 24, 1779, Tarleton's and Simcoe's
cavalry came up from White Plains by way of Pine's Bridge, and burnt it. The parsonage, ten days
earlier, had met the same fate, at the hands of a detachment from Verplanck's Point, under lieutenant
Colonel Robert Abercromby, of the 37th Regiment.
The two incidents well illustrate the harassed condition of the Neutral Ground at the time.
6 Marked 5 on the map. On a map made by Erskine, the patriot geographer, it is called Mead's Tavern.
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