John, British soldier, born in Petincrief, Fifeshire, Scotland, in 1710;
died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 11 March 1759. He became a physician, but
abandoned his profession to enter the army, and was made lieutenant colonel of
the Scotch Greys in 1745. In the German war he was on the staff of Lord Stair,
General Ligonier, and General Campbell, was made colonel of the 17th foot, 25
February 1757, and acted as quartermaster general under the Duke of Cumberland.
He was appointed brigadier general in America, 28 December 1757, and was
adjutant general in the expedition against Louisburg. In the autumn of 1758 he
was placed in command of the expedition against Fort Duquesne, numbering 1,200
highlanders, 350 royal Americans, and about 5,000 provincials, including about
1,000 Virginians under the command of Washington. When Forbes arrived at
Raystown, Pennsylvania, with his army, in September 1758, he was carried in a
litter, as he was already prostrated by the illness that shortly afterward
caused his death, but his head was clear and his will firm, and he retained
command of the expedition.
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