Soldier In A Longboat

Three times John Glover’s Marblehead fishermen saved Washington’s army; in a final battle, the “amphibious regiment” rowed him to victory across the Delaware

 

Some years after the Revolutionary War, Henry Knox, onctime major general and chief of artillery in the Continental Army, rose before the Massachusetts legislature to speak on a bill in behalf of his former comrades in arms, the Marblehead fishermen. Standing there, his hulking aSo-pound frame commanding every eye, Knox recalled the cold Christmas night in 177(1 when these brave men had ferried Washington’s army across an ice-jammed river to launch the attack against Trenton.

 
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General Clinton’s Dumbbell Code

Late in July, 1777, the British general John Burgoyne found himself trapped by a colonial army in the upper reaches of the Hudson; he was about to lose the Battle of Saratoga. In desperation he wrote to Sir Henry Clinton in New York, asking for reinforcements. But the only available troops, under Sir William Howe, were off in Maryland. Clinton’s discouraging answer was a letter which had no apparent meaning until Burgoyne’s staff fitted a prearranged dumbbell-shaped mask over it.Read more »

‘The Smoke, The Thunder, The Roar Of The Battle…”

It is an interesting paradox that, of the two most famous paintings of Bunker Hill, the one that most suggests a real battle was painted by Pyle, the illustrator who lived long afterward, and not by John Trumbull, the painter who saw it (albeit from a distance) and served briefly in the Revolution (see AMERICAN HERITAGE , June, 1958).

For King Or Congress

Hark, Hark the trumpet sounds,
O’er seas and solid grounds,
Who for king George do stand,
Their ruin is at hand,
The Acts of Parliament,
I hate their curst intent,Read more »

Rebels And Redcoats

Participants describe the opening of the American Revolution

 

The tension between American colonists and English rulers had at last reached the breaking point. British troops held Boston, and their commander, General Thomas Gage, believed the time had come to put some sort of curb on the rebellious colonial leaders. On an April day in 1775 he sent out a detachment of soldiers to take action against what seemed clearly a rebellious movement.

The Good Soldier White

Modern G. I.’s will recognize a fellow spirit in the sergeant who wrote this account of life in General Washington’s army

I enlisted in the regiment of artillery commanded by Col. Richard Gridley, the beginning of May 1775, for 8 months, as a bombardier, in Capt. Samuel Gridley’s company; but had not been very long in that capacity, before the Adjutant came to me and said, I understand that you are a good speller, I told him I could spell most any word. Why cannot you come and be my Assistant said he. … He said he paid five shillings per week, besides his rations, and mine would be the same, which he would pay. …

 
 
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America’s Most Imitated Battle

At Cowpens, Dan Morgan showed how militia can be used. The formula worked in three later fights.

On a January morning in 1781 a battle was fought in the South Carolina backwoods which became the tactical show piece of the American Revolution. It set a pattern not only for two other decisive actions of that war but also for a hard-fought engagement of the War of 1812.

This was the Battle of Cowpens, an American victory resulting in the destruction of Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton’s materially superior British force.

 
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Lafayette’s Two Revolutions

Washington was his idol, but he could not apply his American ideals to a France sliding into the Terror

Lafayette, at the head of a group of young French nobles, first landed on American soil amid the live oaks hung with Spanish moss on the swampy shores of the little port of Georgetown in the southern Carolinas, in the early summer of 1777. He came in his own private brig, chartered from a Spaniard.Read more »