LOWER CANADIAN REBELLION, 1837-38 205
bering the fate usually meted out to rebels, exile to Bermuda seems a distinctly mild form of punishment, yet Nelson and his companions were looked upon as martyrs in Lower Canada. Durham had acted wisely and in the best interests of peace and good government, but he had exceeded his authority, in granting a general amnesty to the Rebels and deporting the leaders to a sister Crown Colony, and the Imperial Government, surrendering weakly to the clamour of the Opposition in the Imperial Parliament, repudiated his action. Durham in disgust resigned his High Commissionership and sailed for England on November 1st, 1838, not, however, before he had got together the material for his invaluable Report. Eventually all the rebel leaders were permitted to return to their native province.
Hardly had Durham left the country, and Colborne resumed for a time the reins of government, than the out-laws began to make further trouble. As part of a general scheme of invasion, a party of rebels and sympathisers crossed the boundary near St. Johns, in the Eastern Townships, armed with American muskets and ammunition. Fortunately the Government had had ample warning, and the rebels were dispersed by detachments of the 15th Regiment and the Dragoon Guards, a number being captured. About the same time revolt broke out again in Beauharnois, on the Chateauguay, and up and down the Richelieu. The homes of loyal settlers along the boundary were burned, and some of them murdered in cold blood. A number of armed rebels even had the temerity to appear on the south bank of the St. Lawrence opposite Montreal, and near the village of the Caughnawagas. The loyal Indians went out after them, raised the war-whoop, and captured the entire party.
Trouble also broke out again for a time in the Lake of Two Mountains district, and the volunteers were once more called out in Montreal. Colborne proclaimed martial law and took energetic steps to stamp out the rebellion. The scene moves again to the boundary, where,