ROGERS, ROBERT (1731-1795), American frontier sol dier, was born at Methuen, Mass., and in 1739 removed to Starktown (now Dunbarton), N.H. During the Seven Years' War he raised and commanded a force of militia, known as Rogers's Rangers, which won wide reputation for its courage and endurance in the campaigns about Lake George. He took part in Wolfe's expedition against Quebec and in the Montreal cam paign of 1760. Afterwards he was sent by Gen. Amherst to take possession of the north-western posts, including Detroit. He was again in the West in 1763 during the Pontiac uprising, accom panying Dalyell's expedition and participating in the battle of Bloody Bridge. Soon after he went to England and in 1765 published in London a Concise Account of North America and his Journals of service in the Seven Years' War. In 1766 was published Ponteach: A Tragedy, one of the first American dramas, supposedly also written by Rogers. He further laid before the king a memorial proposing to lead an overland expe dition from the Mississippi river to the Pacific ocean. This was refused him but instead he was given command of the north west post of Michilimackinac. From here in 1766 he sent out
on his own initiative, under Captains Tute and Carver, the first English expedition to explore the upper Mississippi and Great Lakes region, but it failed to penetrate to the Pacific as intended.
Rogers's ambitions caused him to be tried for treason but he was acquitted. He again went to England to retrieve his fortune but was unsuccessful. During the Revolutionary War he came to America but was regarded as a loyalist spy. He then openly joined the British and organized and commanded the Queen's Rangers which saw service in operations around New York city. Later he organized the King's Rangers, but the command was taken by his brother, James Rogers, and Robert Rogers returned to England, where he lived in obscurity until his death in 1795.
There is a scholarly biography by Allan Nevins of 172 pages in the Caxton Club edition of Ponteach (Chicago, 1914). See also F. Park man, Montcalm and Wolfe (Boston, 1884).