Wolfe then held a council with his two next in command, the Brigadiers Monckton and Townshend, and they resolved, as a desperate attempt, to move up the river, and thus endeavour to draw Montcalm from his unassailable position. Accordingly, leaving detachments to defend the Isle of Orleans and Point Levi, the rest of the army ascended the St. Lawrence for some miles, and pitched their camp on the right bank. To attract still more attention, Admiral Holmes was ordered to put his vessels in active motion for some days, as if seeking a landing-place higher up the river. This stratagem, however, produced no other result than that of Montcalm sending a detachment of one thousand five hundred men to watch their proceedings. He himself maintained his old ground.
Nothing could exceed the indignation of the public at the attempt that was being made by the Court, in league with an intriguing faction, to resist the national will. All classes, high and low, rich and poor, nobles and commoners, Churchmen and Dissenters, were roused into a state of wild excitement and fierce determination. Indignation meetings were everywhere held and threatening resolutions passed. The House of Commons was called upon to stop the supplies; placards were put up in the windows of shops expressing the determination of the inhabitants to pay no taxes. This determination was not confined to the middle classes; men of the highest rank and largest property, such as Lord Milton, told the tax-collector not to call again. A complete and active organisation existed in London for the purpose of stimulating and directing public feeling in the provinces, and obtaining from the people vehement petitions, which poured in to both Houses rapidly, especially to the House of Commons. The political unions were everywhere preparing for actual insurrection. In London meetings were held by day and by night, at which the most violent language was used even by persons of property and rank. The Common Council of London met, and passed resolutions denouncing those who had advised the king not to create peers as enemies of their Sovereign, who had put to imminent hazard the stability of the Throne and the security of the country. A standing committee was appointed to watch the course of events. The feeling excited by these extraordinary proceedings proved, beyond the possibility of doubt, that the whole mercantile and trading classes in the metropolis were prepared to adopt revolutionary measures, if such were necessary, for the attainment of the Reform Bill. Immense numbers of persons who had hitherto considered the proceedings of the National Political union in London too violent, were now, says the Times of the 11th of May, at their own solicitation, admitted members. Similar excitement prevailed throughout the provinces.