Episcopalian churches, which had been closed owing to the riotous conduct of the patriot mob, were reopened. The hangers-on of the army,the camp-followers, loose women, and the like,formed a regular banditti, who infested the streets after dark, and made all outgoings dangerous. There was a completely organized system of gigantic jobbery and swindling, by which the contractors and commissaries, and not a few of the kings officers as well, were enriched at the expense of the British government; and when they plundered the government wholesale, it was not to be supposed that they would spare Tories. The rich Royalists, besides of course all the Whigs, had their portable property, their horses, provisions, and silver taken from them right and left,sometimes by bands of marauding soldiers, sometimes by the commissaries, but always without redress or compensation, their representations to the officers in command being scornfully disregarded. They complained in their bitter anger that the troops sent to reconquer America seemed bent on campaigning less against the rebels than against the kings own friends and the kings own army-chest. Many of the troops lived at free quarters in the private houses, behaving well or ill according to their individual characters.
A few days after New York was captured it took fire, and a large portion of it was burnt up before