Battle of Long Island

Battle of Long Island

Overview
The Battle of Long Island, also known as the Battle of Brooklyn or the Battle of Brooklyn Heights, fought on August 27, 1776, was the first major battle in the American Revolutionary War
American Revolutionary War
The American Revolutionary War , the American War of Independence, or simply the Revolutionary War, began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen British colonies in North America, and ended in a global war between several European great powers.The war was the result of the...

 following the United States Declaration of Independence
United States Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence was a statement adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, which announced that the thirteen American colonies then at war with Great Britain regarded themselves as independent states, and no longer a part of the British Empire. John Adams put forth a...

, the largest battle of the entire conflict, and the first battle in which an army of the United States engaged, having declared itself a nation only the month before.

After defeating the British in the Siege of Boston
Siege of Boston
The Siege of Boston was the opening phase of the American Revolutionary War, in which New England militiamen—who later became part of the Continental Army—surrounded the town of Boston, Massachusetts, to prevent movement by the British Army garrisoned within...

 on March 17, 1776, General George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

, Commander-in-Chief, brought the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

 to defend New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

, then limited to the southern end of Manhattan Island.
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Encyclopedia
The Battle of Long Island, also known as the Battle of Brooklyn or the Battle of Brooklyn Heights, fought on August 27, 1776, was the first major battle in the American Revolutionary War
American Revolutionary War
The American Revolutionary War , the American War of Independence, or simply the Revolutionary War, began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen British colonies in North America, and ended in a global war between several European great powers.The war was the result of the...

 following the United States Declaration of Independence
United States Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence was a statement adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, which announced that the thirteen American colonies then at war with Great Britain regarded themselves as independent states, and no longer a part of the British Empire. John Adams put forth a...

, the largest battle of the entire conflict, and the first battle in which an army of the United States engaged, having declared itself a nation only the month before.

After defeating the British in the Siege of Boston
Siege of Boston
The Siege of Boston was the opening phase of the American Revolutionary War, in which New England militiamen—who later became part of the Continental Army—surrounded the town of Boston, Massachusetts, to prevent movement by the British Army garrisoned within...

 on March 17, 1776, General George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

, Commander-in-Chief, brought the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

 to defend New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

, then limited to the southern end of Manhattan Island. There he established defenses and waited for the British to attack. In July the British, under the command of General William Howe
William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe
William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe, KB, PC was a British army officer who rose to become Commander-in-Chief of British forces during the American War of Independence...

, landed a few miles across the harbor on Staten Island
Staten Island
Staten Island is a borough of New York City, New York, United States, located in the southwest part of the city. Staten Island is separated from New Jersey by the Arthur Kill and the Kill Van Kull, and from the rest of New York by New York Bay...

, where they were slowly reinforced by ships in Lower New York Bay
Lower New York Bay
Lower New York Bay is that section of New York Bay south of the Narrows, the relatively narrow strait between the shores of Staten Island and Brooklyn. The southern end of the bay opens directly to the Atlantic Ocean between two spits of land, Sandy Hook, New Jersey, and Rockaway, Queens, on Long...

 over the next month and a half, bringing their total force to 32,000 men. With the British fleet in control of the entrance to New York Harbor
New York Harbor
New York Harbor refers to the waterways of the estuary near the mouth of the Hudson River that empty into New York Bay. It is one of the largest natural harbors in the world. Although the U.S. Board of Geographic Names does not use the term, New York Harbor has important historical, governmental,...

, Washington knew the difficulty in holding the city. Believing Manhattan would be the first target, he moved the bulk of his forces there.

On August 22, the British landed on the western end of Long Island
Long Island
Long Island is an island located in the southeast part of the U.S. state of New York, just east of Manhattan. Stretching northeast into the Atlantic Ocean, Long Island contains four counties, two of which are boroughs of New York City , and two of which are mainly suburban...

, across The Narrows
The Narrows
The Narrows is the tidal strait separating the boroughs of Staten Island and Brooklyn in New York City. It connects the Upper New York Bay and Lower New York Bay and forms the principal channel by which the Hudson River empties into the Atlantic Ocean...

 from Staten Island, more than a dozen miles south from the East River
East River
The East River is a tidal strait in New York City. It connects Upper New York Bay on its south end to Long Island Sound on its north end. It separates Long Island from the island of Manhattan and the Bronx on the North American mainland...

 crossings to Manhattan. After five days of waiting, the British attacked American defenses on the Guana (Gowanus) Heights. Unknown to the Americans, however, Howe had brought his main army around their rear and attacked their flank soon after. The Americans panicked, although a stand by 400 Maryland troops prevented most of the army from being captured. The remainder of the army fled to the main defenses on Brooklyn Heights. The British dug in for a siege but, on the night of August 29–30, Washington evacuated the entire army to Manhattan without the loss of material or a single life. Washington and the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

 were driven out of New York entirely after several more defeats and forced to retreat through New Jersey
New Jersey
New Jersey is a state in the Northeastern and Middle Atlantic regions of the United States. , its population was 8,791,894. It is bordered on the north and east by the state of New York, on the southeast and south by the Atlantic Ocean, on the west by Pennsylvania and on the southwest by Delaware...

 and into Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is a U.S. state that is located in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. The state borders Delaware and Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, New York and Ontario, Canada, to the north, and New Jersey to...

.

Boston to New York


Following the Battles of Lexington and Concord
Battles of Lexington and Concord
The Battles of Lexington and Concord were the first military engagements of the American Revolutionary War. They were fought on April 19, 1775, in Middlesex County, Province of Massachusetts Bay, within the towns of Lexington, Concord, Lincoln, Menotomy , and Cambridge, near Boston...

 on April 19, 1775, the British Army was trapped
Siege of Boston
The Siege of Boston was the opening phase of the American Revolutionary War, in which New England militiamen—who later became part of the Continental Army—surrounded the town of Boston, Massachusetts, to prevent movement by the British Army garrisoned within...

 in Boston
Boston
Boston is the capital of and largest city in Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is regarded as the unofficial "Capital of New England" for its economic and cultural impact on the entire New England region. The city proper had...

. On March 4, 1776, General George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

, Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

, had artillery placed on Dorchester Heights
Dorchester Heights
Dorchester Heights is the central area of South Boston. It is the highest area in the neighborhood and commands a view of both Boston Harbor and downtown.-History:...

. The British Commander, William Howe
William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe
William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe, KB, PC was a British army officer who rose to become Commander-in-Chief of British forces during the American War of Independence...

, knew that he could not hold the city, with the artillery on the heights that would threaten the British Fleet in Boston Harbor
Boston Harbor
Boston Harbor is a natural harbor and estuary of Massachusetts Bay, and is located adjacent to the city of Boston, Massachusetts. It is home to the Port of Boston, a major shipping facility in the northeast.-History:...

. Two weeks later, on March 17, Howe had the army evacuate the city and they headed for Halifax, Nova Scotia
City of Halifax
Halifax is a city in Canada, which was the capital of the province of Nova Scotia and shire town of Halifax County. It was the largest city in Atlantic Canada until it was amalgamated into Halifax Regional Municipality in 1996...

.

After the British abandoned Boston, Washington began to send regiments to New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 where he believed that the British would attack next because of its strategic importance. Washington left on April 4. The army took a route through Rhode Island
Rhode Island
The state of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, more commonly referred to as Rhode Island , is a state in the New England region of the United States. It is the smallest U.S. state by area...

 and Connecticut
Connecticut
Connecticut is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, and the state of New York to the west and the south .Connecticut is named for the Connecticut River, the major U.S. river that approximately...

, and civilians came out to cheer and offer food and drink to the soldiers. On April 5, the army paraded into Providence
Providence, Rhode Island
Providence is the capital and most populous city of Rhode Island and was one of the first cities established in the United States. Located in Providence County, it is the third largest city in the New England region...

 and thousands of civilians came out to see Washington and the army. Eight days later, on April 13, Washington arrived in New York. Washington took up headquarters on Broadway
Broadway (New York City)
Broadway is a prominent avenue in New York City, United States, which runs through the full length of the borough of Manhattan and continues northward through the Bronx borough before terminating in Westchester County, New York. It is the oldest north–south main thoroughfare in the city, dating to...

 and quickly set to work. In February, Washington had sent his second in command, Charles Lee
Charles Lee (general)
Charles Lee was a British soldier who later served as a General of the Continental Army during the American War of Independence. Lee served in the British army during the Seven Years War. After the war he sold his commission and served for a time in the Polish army of King Stanislaus II...

, to New York to build the defenses for the city. Lee remained in control of the city's defenses until Congress
Second Continental Congress
The Second Continental Congress was a convention of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies that started meeting on May 10, 1775, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, soon after warfare in the American Revolutionary War had begun. It succeeded the First Continental Congress, which met briefly during 1774,...

 sent him to South Carolina
South Carolina
South Carolina is a state in the Deep South of the United States that borders Georgia to the south, North Carolina to the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. Originally part of the Province of Carolina, the Province of South Carolina was one of the 13 colonies that declared independence...

 in March, and the job of preparing the defenses was left to General William Alexander (Lord Stirling). Because Lee and Stirling had too few troops to do the job, Washington found the defenses only half done. Lee had concluded that if the British commanded the sea it would be impossible to hold the city, so he built his defenses so as to force the British to pay with heavy casualties if they were to take any ground from the Americans. Lee had barricade
Barricade
Barricade, from the French barrique , is any object or structure that creates a barrier or obstacle to control, block passage or force the flow of traffic in the desired direction...

s and redoubt
Redoubt
A redoubt is a fort or fort system usually consisting of an enclosed defensive emplacement outside a larger fort, usually relying on earthworks, though others are constructed of stone or brick. It is meant to protect soldiers outside the main defensive line and can be a permanent structure or a...

s established in and around the city along with a bastion
Bastion
A bastion, or a bulwark, is a structure projecting outward from the main enclosure of a fortification, situated in both corners of a straight wall , facilitating active defence against assaulting troops...

, called Fort Stirling, on Brooklyn Heights. While in New York, Lee sent out troops to clear Long Island of Loyalists.

Defenses and discipline


Washington began moving troops to Long Island in early May. Within a short time, there were a few thousand men on Long Island. On the eastern side of the hamlet of Brooklyn, three more forts were under construction to support Fort Stirling, which was to the west of the hamlet. The three forts were named Fort Putnam (for Rufus Putnam
Rufus Putnam
Rufus Putnam was a colonial military officer during the French and Indian War, and a general in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War...

), Fort Greene (for Nathanael Greene
Nathanael Greene
Nathanael Greene was a major general of the Continental Army in the American Revolutionary War. When the war began, Greene was a militia private, the lowest rank possible; he emerged from the war with a reputation as George Washington's most gifted and dependable officer. Many places in the United...

) and Fort Box (for Major Daniel Box). Fort Putnam was furthest to the north, with Greene slightly to the southwest and Box slightly further southwest. All of these forts were surrounded by a large ditch and they were all connected by a line of entrenchments. The forts had 36 cannons total, mostly 18-pounders. Fort Defiance was also being built at this time, located further southwest, past Fort Box, near present day Red Hook
Red Hook, Brooklyn
Red Hook is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, USA. The neighborhood is part of Brooklyn Community Board 6. It is also the location where the transatlantic liner, the , docks in New York City.- History :...

. In addition to these new forts, a mounted battery was established on Governors Island
Governors Island
Governors Island is a island in Upper New York Bay, approximately one-half mile from the southern tip of Manhattan Island and separated from Brooklyn by Buttermilk Channel. It is legally part of the borough of Manhattan in New York City...

, cannons were placed at Fort George
Fort Amsterdam
For the historic fort on the island of Saint Martin, see Fort Amsterdam Fort Amsterdam was a fort on the southern tip of Manhattan that was the administrative headquarters for the Dutch and then British rule of New York from...

 and more cannons placed at the Whitehall Dock, which sat on the East River
East River
The East River is a tidal strait in New York City. It connects Upper New York Bay on its south end to Long Island Sound on its north end. It separates Long Island from the island of Manhattan and the Bronx on the North American mainland...

. Hulks
Hulk (ship)
A hulk is a ship that is afloat, but incapable of going to sea. Although sometimes used to describe a ship that has been launched but not completed, the term most often refers to an old ship that has had its rigging or internal equipment removed, retaining only its flotational qualities...

 were sunk at strategic locations to deter the British from entering the East River and other waterways.

Washington had been authorized by Congress to recruit an army of up to 28,500 men; he had, however, only 19,000 troops when he arrived in New York. There was almost no discipline in the army and simple orders had to be repeated constantly. Men fired their muskets off in camp, ruined their flints, used their bayonets as knives to cut food, and often did not bother to clean their muskets. As this was the first time most men had seen others from different regions, there were occasional differences that caused conflict.

Due to a shortage of artillerymen, the commander of the artillery, Henry Knox
Henry Knox
Henry Knox was a military officer of the Continental Army and later the United States Army, and also served as the first United States Secretary of War....

, persuaded Washington to transfer 500 or 600 men who lacked muskets to the artillery. In early June, Knox and Greene inspected the land at the north end of Manhattan
Manhattan
Manhattan is the oldest and the most densely populated of the five boroughs of New York City. Located primarily on the island of Manhattan at the mouth of the Hudson River, the boundaries of the borough are identical to those of New York County, an original county of the state of New York...

 and decided to establish Fort Washington
Fort Washington (New York)
Fort Washington was a fortified position near the north end of Manhattan Island and was located at the highest point on the island. The Fort Washington Site is listed on the U.S...

 there. Another fort, Fort Constitution
Fort Lee, New Jersey
Fort Lee is a borough in Bergen County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the borough population was 35,345. Located atop the Hudson Palisades, the borough is the western terminus of the George Washington Bridge...

, later named Fort Lee, was planned for the other side of the Hudson River
Hudson River
The Hudson is a river that flows from north to south through eastern New York. The highest official source is at Lake Tear of the Clouds, on the slopes of Mount Marcy in the Adirondack Mountains. The river itself officially begins in Henderson Lake in Newcomb, New York...

 from Fort Washington. The purpose of these forts was to stop British ships from sailing up the Hudson.

British arrival



On June 28, Washington learned that the British fleet had set sail from Halifax on June 9 and were heading toward New York. On June 29, signals were sent from men stationed on Staten Island
Staten Island
Staten Island is a borough of New York City, New York, United States, located in the southwest part of the city. Staten Island is separated from New Jersey by the Arthur Kill and the Kill Van Kull, and from the rest of New York by New York Bay...

 that the British fleet had appeared. Within a few hours 45 British ships dropped anchor in Lower New York Bay
Lower New York Bay
Lower New York Bay is that section of New York Bay south of the Narrows, the relatively narrow strait between the shores of Staten Island and Brooklyn. The southern end of the bay opens directly to the Atlantic Ocean between two spits of land, Sandy Hook, New Jersey, and Rockaway, Queens, on Long...

. Less than a week later, there were 130 ships off Staten Island under the command of Richard Howe, the brother of the General. The population of New York went into panic at the sight of the British ships, alarms went off and troops immediately rushed to their posts. On July 2, British troops began to land on Staten Island. The Continental regulars on the island took a few shots at the British before fleeing and the citizen's militia
Militia
The term militia is commonly used today to refer to a military force composed of ordinary citizens to provide defense, emergency law enforcement, or paramilitary service, in times of emergency without being paid a regular salary or committed to a fixed term of service. It is a polyseme with...

 switched over to the British side.

On July 6, news reached New York that Congress had voted for independence four days earlier. On Tuesday, July 9, at 6:00 in the evening, Washington had several brigades march onto the Commons of the City to hear the Declaration of Independence
United States Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence was a statement adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, which announced that the thirteen American colonies then at war with Great Britain regarded themselves as independent states, and no longer a part of the British Empire. John Adams put forth a...

 read. After the end of the reading, a mob ran down to Bowling Green
Bowling Green (New York City)
Bowling Green is a small public park in Lower Manhattan at the foot of Broadway next to the site of the original Dutch fort of New Amsterdam. Built in 1733, originally including a bowling green, it is the oldest public park in New York City and is surrounded by its original 18th century fence. At...

, where, with ropes and bars, they tore down the gilded lead statue of King George III on his horse. In their fury the crowd cut off the statue's head, severed the nose, and mounted what remained of the head on a spike outside a tavern, and the rest of the statue was dragged to Connecticut and melted down into musket balls.

On July 12, two British ships, the Phoenix and the Rose
HMS Rose (1757)
HMS Rose was a 20-gun sixth-rate post ship of the Royal Navy, built in Hull, England in 1757. Her activities in suppressing smuggling in the colony of Rhode Island provoked the formation of what became the Continental Navy, precursor of the modern United States Navy. In the Seven Years' War, Rose...

, sailed up the harbor toward the mouth of the Hudson. The American batteries stationed at Fort George
Fort George, New York
Fort George, New York was the name of five forts in the state of New York.The first Fort George was built in 1626 in New Amsterdam and named Fort Amsterdam. The British Army occupied it as Fort James from 1664 to 1687. Briefly re-occupied by the Dutch from 1673-1674 as Fort Willem Hendrick, it was...

, Red Hook
Red Hook, Brooklyn
Red Hook is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, USA. The neighborhood is part of Brooklyn Community Board 6. It is also the location where the transatlantic liner, the , docks in New York City.- History :...

 and Governors Island
Governors Island
Governors Island is a island in Upper New York Bay, approximately one-half mile from the southern tip of Manhattan Island and separated from Brooklyn by Buttermilk Channel. It is legally part of the borough of Manhattan in New York City...

 opened fire, but the British returned fire into the city. The ships sailed along the New Jersey shore and continued up the Hudson, sailing past Fort Washington and arriving by nightfall at Tarrytown
Tarrytown, New York
Tarrytown is a village in the town of Greenburgh in Westchester County, New York, United States. It is located on the eastern bank of the Hudson River, about north of midtown Manhattan in New York City, and is served by a stop on the Metro-North Hudson Line...

, the widest part of the Hudson. The goal of the British ships was to cut off American supplies and encourage Loyalist support. The only casualties of the day were six Americans who were killed when their own cannon blew up.
The next day, July 13, General Howe attempted to open negotiations with the Americans. Howe sent a letter to Washington delivered by Lieutenant Philip Brown, who arrived under the flag of truce. The letter was addressed George Washington, Esq. Brown was met by Joseph Reed
Joseph Reed (jurist)
Joseph Reed was a Pennsylvania lawyer, military officer, and statesman of the Revolutionary Era. He served as a delegate to the Continental Congress and, while in Congress, signed the Articles of Confederation...

, who on Washington's orders had hurried to the waterfront accompanied by Henry Knox
Henry Knox
Henry Knox was a military officer of the Continental Army and later the United States Army, and also served as the first United States Secretary of War....

 and Samuel Webb. Washington asked his officers whether it should be received or not, as it did not recognize his rank as General, and they unanimously said no. Brown was told by Reed that there was no one in the army with that address. On July 16 Howe tried again, this time with the address George Washington, Esq., etc., etc. but it was again declined. The next day Howe sent Captain Nisbet Balfour to ask if Washington would meet with Howe's adjutant
Adjutant
Adjutant is a military rank or appointment. In some armies, including most English-speaking ones, it is an officer who assists a more senior officer, while in other armies, especially Francophone ones, it is an NCO , normally corresponding roughly to a Staff Sergeant or Warrant Officer.An Adjutant...

 face to face, and a meeting was scheduled for July 20. Howe's adjutant was Colonel James Patterson. Patterson told Washington that Howe had come with powers to grant pardons but Washington said, "Those who have committed no fault want no pardon." Patterson departed soon after. Washington's performance during the meeting was praised throughout the United States.

Meanwhile, British ships continued to arrive. On August 1, 45 ships with Generals Henry Clinton
Henry Clinton (American War of Independence)
General Sir Henry Clinton KB was a British army officer and politician, best known for his service as a general during the American War of Independence. First arriving in Boston in May 1775, from 1778 to 1782 he was the British Commander-in-Chief in North America...

 and Charles Cornwallis arrived, along with 3,000 troops. By August 12, 3,000 more British troops and another 8,000 Hessians had arrived. At this point the British fleet numbered over 400 ships, including 73 war ships, and 32,000 troops were camped on Staten Island. Faced with this large force, Washington was unsure as to where the British would attack. Both Greene and Reed thought that the British would attack Long Island, but Washington felt that a British attack on Long Island might be a diversion for the main attack on Manhattan. Washington broke his army in half, stationing half of it on Manhattan, and the other half on Long Island; the army on Long Island was commanded by Greene. On August 20 Greene became ill and was forced to move to a house in Manhattan where he rested to recover. John Sullivan
John Sullivan
John Sullivan was the third son of Irish immigrants, a United States general in the Revolutionary War, a delegate in the Continental Congress and a United States federal judge....

 was placed in command until Greene was well enough to resume command.


Invasion of Long Island


At 5:10 a.m., on August 22, an advance guard of 4,000 British troops, under the command of Clinton and Cornwallis, left Staten Island to land on Long Island. At 8:00 am, all 4,000 troops landed on the shore of Gravesend Bay, unopposed. Colonel Edward Hand
Edward Hand
-Early life and career:Hand was born in Clyduff, King's County, Ireland January 10, 1742, and was baptised in Shinrone. His father was John Hand. Among his immediate neighbours were the Kearney family, ancestors of U.S. President Barack Obamba [1]...

's Pennsylvanian riflemen had been stationed on the shore, but they did not oppose the landings and fell back, killing cattle and burning farmhouses on the way. By noon, 15,000 troops had landed on shore along with 40 pieces of artillery. As hundreds of Loyalists came to greet the British troops, Cornwallis pushed on with the advance guard, advancing six miles on to the island and establishing camp at the village of Flatbush
Flatbush, Brooklyn
Flatbush is a community of the Borough of Brooklyn, a part of New York City, consisting of several neighborhoods.The name Flatbush is an Anglicization of the Dutch language Vlacke bos ....

; Cornwallis was given orders to advance no further.

Washington received word of the landings the same day they occurred, but was informed that the number was 8,000 to 9,000 troops. This convinced Washington that it was the feint he had predicted and therefore he only sent 1,500 more troops to Brooklyn, bringing the total troops on Long Island to 6,000. On August 24, Washington replaced Sullivan with Israel Putnam
Israel Putnam
Israel Putnam was an American army general and Freemason who fought with distinction at the Battle of Bunker Hill during the American Revolutionary War...

 who commanded the troops on Long Island. Putnam arrived on Long Island the next day along with six battalions. Also that day the British troops on Long Island received 5,000 Hessian reinforcements, bringing their total to 20,000. Although there was little fighting on the days immediately after the landing, some small skirmishes did take place with American marksmen
Marksman
A marksman is a person who is skilled in precision, or a sharpshooter shooting, using projectile weapons, such as with a rifle but most commonly with a sniper rifle, to shoot at long range targets...

 armed with rifle
Rifle
A rifle is a firearm designed to be fired from the shoulder, with a barrel that has a helical groove or pattern of grooves cut into the barrel walls. The raised areas of the rifling are called "lands," which make contact with the projectile , imparting spin around an axis corresponding to the...

s picking off British troops from time to time.

The American plan was that Putnam would direct the defenses from Brooklyn Heights while Sullivan and Stirling and their troops would be stationed on the Guana Heights. The heights were up to 150 feet high and blocked the most direct route to Brooklyn Heights. Washington believed by stationing men on the heights that heavy casualties could be inflicted on the British before the troops fell back to the main defenses at Brooklyn Heights. There were three main passes through the heights; the Gowanus Road furthest to the west, the Flatbush Road slightly farther to the east, in the center of the American line where it was expected the British would attack, and the Bedford Road
Bedford Avenue (Brooklyn)
Bedford Avenue is the longest street in Brooklyn, New York City, stretching and 132 blocks from Greenpoint south to Sheepshead Bay, and passing through the neighborhoods of Williamsburg, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Crown Heights, Flatbush and Midwood....

 farthest to the east. Stirling was responsible to defend the Gowanus Road with 500 men, and Sullivan was to defend the Flatbush and Bedford Roads where there were 1,000 and 800 men respectively. 6,000 troops would remain behind at Brooklyn Heights. There was one lesser-known pass through the heights farther to the east called the Jamaica Pass. This pass was defended by just five militia officers on horses.

On the British side, General Clinton learned of the almost undefended Jamaica Pass from local Loyalists. Clinton drew up a plan and gave it to William Erskine
Sir William Erskine, 1st Baronet
Lieutenant-General Sir William Erskine, 1st Baronet was a British Army commander and the 1st baronet of the Erskine of Torrie creation.-Background:...

 to propose to Howe. Clinton's plan had the main army making a night march and going through the Jamaica Pass to turn the American flank while other troops would keep the Americans busy in front. On August 26, Clinton received word from Howe that the plan would be used, and that Clinton was to command the advance guard of the main army of 10,000 men on the march through the Jamaica Pass. While they made the night march, General James Grant's British troops along with some Hessians, a total of 4,000 men, would attack the Americans in front to distract them from the main army coming on their flank. Howe told Clinton to be ready to move out that night, August 26.

Washington's defeat revealed his deficiencies as a strategist who split his forces, his inexperienced generals who misunderstood the situation, and his raw troops that fled in disorder at the first shots. On the other hand his daring nighttime retreat has been seen by some historians as one of his greatest military feats. Other historians concentrate on the failure of British naval forces to prevent the withdrawal. Washington had no warships, but did use shore batteries, underwater trees and obstacles, fireships that retarded British movements. Washington brought the Continental Army to defend New York then he waited for the British Attack....

Night march


At 9:00 p.m. the British moved out. No one, except the commanders—not even the officers—knew of the plan. Clinton led a crack brigade of light infantry with fixed bayonets in front, followed by Cornwallis who had eight battalions and 14 artillery pieces. Cornwallis was, in turn, followed by Howe and Hugh Percy
Hugh Percy, 2nd Duke of Northumberland
Lieutenant-General Hugh Percy, 2nd Duke of Northumberland, FRS was an officer in the British army and later a British peer...

 with six battalions, more artillery, and baggage. The column consisted of 10,000 men who stretched out over two miles. Three Loyalist farmers led the column toward the Jamaica Pass. The British had left their campfires burning to deceive the Americans into thinking that nothing was happening. The column headed northeast until it reached what later became the village of New Lots
New Lots, Brooklyn
New Lots is a sub-section of the East New York neighborhood in the eastern part of the New York City borough of Brooklyn. It was known as the Town of New Lots from 1852 when the area seceded from the Town of Flatbush until it was annexed in 1886 as the 26th Ward of Brooklyn. The population is...

 when it headed directly north, toward the Heights.

The column had yet to run into any American troops when they reached Howard's Tavern (also known as Howard's Half-Way House), just a few hundred yards from the Jamaica Pass. The tavern keeper William Howard and his son William Jr. were forced to act as guides to show the British the way to the Rockaway Foot Path, an old Indian
Lenape
The Lenape are an Algonquian group of Native Americans of the Northeastern Woodlands. They are also called Delaware Indians. As a result of the American Revolutionary War and later Indian removals from the eastern United States, today the main groups live in Canada, where they are enrolled in the...

 trail that skirted the Jamaica Pass to the west (located today in the Cemetery of the Evergreens). Five minutes after leaving the tavern, the five American militia officers stationed at the Pass were captured without a shot fired, as they thought the British were Americans. Clinton interrogated the men and they informed him that they were the only troops guarding the pass. By dawn the British were through the pass and and stopped so the troops were could rest. At 9:00 am, they fired two heavy cannons to signal the Hessian troops below Battle Pass to begin their frontal assault against Sullivan's men deployed on the two hills flanking the pass while Clinton's troops simultaneously flanked the American positions from the east.

William Howard Jr. describes meeting General Howe:

“It was about 2 o’clock in the morning of the 27th of August that I was awakened by seeing a soldier at the side of my bed. I got up and dressed and went down to the barroom, where I saw my father standing in one corner with three British soldiers before him with muskets and bayonets fixed. The army was then lying in the field in front of the house ...General Howe and another officer were in the barroom. General Howe wore a camlet
Camlet
Camlet, also commonly known as camelot or camblet, is a woven fabric that might have originally been made of camel or goat's hair, now chiefly of goat's hair and silk, or of wool and cotton...

 cloak over his regimentals. After asking for a glass of liquor from the bar, which was given him, he entered into familiar conversation with my father, and among other things said, ‘I must have some one of you to show me over the Rockaway Path around the pass.’

“My father replied, ‘We belong to the other side, General, and can’t serve you against our duty.’ General Howe replied, ‘That is alright; stick to your country, or stick to your principles, but Howard, you are my prisoner and must guide my men over the hill.’ My father made some further objection, but was silenced by the general, who said, ‘You have no alternative. If you refuse I shall shoot you through the head.’”

Opening engagements



In the early morning hours of August 27, 1776, the first shots of the Battle of Brooklyn were fired near the Red Lion Inn
Red Lion Inn (Brooklyn)
The Red Lion Inn was a tavern in Colonial New York located on Long Island in what is today the New York City borough of Brooklyn. The inn named in honor of King Henry V for the tavern he rested in after the Battle of Agincourt, was at the junction of three country roads: the Narrows Road which led...

 (near present-day 39st. and 4th ave.) when a British scouting party from the diversionary force led by General James Grant encountered American pickets stationed at the Red Lion. According to some accounts the British troops were foraging in a watermelon patch. After an initial exchange of musket fire the British initially retreated then returned with reinforcements, the American troops then fled in up the Gowanus Road toward the Vechte-Cortelyou House. Major Edward Burd
Edward Burd
Edward Burd was a Revolutionary War officer in Pennsylvania and later a Prothonotary of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.-Life:...

 who had been in command was captured along with a lieutenant and 15 privates.

Colonel Samuel Holden Parsons
Samuel Holden Parsons
Samuel Holden Parsons was an American lawyer, jurist, and military leader.Parsons was born in Lyme, Connecticut, the son of Jonathan Parsons and Phoebe Parsons...

 a lawyer from Connecticut who had recently secured a commission in the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

, and Colonel Samuel Atlee of Pennsylvania, a veteran of the French and Indian War
French and Indian War
The French and Indian War is the common American name for the war between Great Britain and France in North America from 1754 to 1763. In 1756, the war erupted into the world-wide conflict known as the Seven Years' War and thus came to be regarded as the North American theater of that war...

 were stationed further north on the Gowanus Road. The two colonels roused from their sleep from the sound of musket fire managed to intercept the troops fleeing from the British at the Red Lion and form them into a skirmish line. At daybreak the Americans would be reinforced with 400 troops sent by General Sullivan
John Sullivan
John Sullivan was the third son of Irish immigrants, a United States general in the Revolutionary War, a delegate in the Continental Congress and a United States federal judge....

 stationed at the Flatbush Pass.

At 3:00 am, Putnam was awakened by a guard and told that the British were attacking through the Gowanus Pass.Putnam lit signals to Washington who was on Manhattan and then rode south to warn Stirling of the attack. Stirling led two regiments of Delaware and Maryland Continentals, a total of 1,600 troops, taking them to establish line to stop the British advance. The British and the Americans engaged each other from about 200 yards apart, both sides under cannon fire, and the British twice assaulted Stirling's troops on the high ground, but each time they were repulsed. The Americans, however, were unaware that this was not the main British attack.

The Hessians, in the center under the command of General von Heister, began to bombard the American lines. The Hessian brigades, however, did not attack and Sullivan sent four hundred of his men to reinforce Stirling. Howe fired his signal guns at 9:00 AM and the Hessians began to advance in front while the main army came at Sullivan from the rear. Sullivan left his advance guard to hold off the Hessians while he turned the rest of his force around to fight the British. Heavy casualties mounted up between the Americans and the British and men on both sides fled out of fear. Sullivan attempted to calm his men and tried to lead a retreat. By this point the Hessians had overrun the advance guard on the heights and the American left had completely collapsed. Hand-to-hand fighting followed with the Americans swinging their muskets and rifles like clubs to save their lives. Many of the Americans who surrendered were bayoneted by the Hessians. Sullivan, despite the chaos, managed to evacuate most of his men to Brooklyn Heights though Sullivan himself was captured.

Retreat


At 9:00 am, Washington arrived from Manhattan. Washington realized that he had been wrong about a feint on Long Island and he ordered more troops to Brooklyn from Manhattan. Washington's location on the battlefield is not known for sure, because accounts differ, but most likely he was at Brooklyn Heights where he could view the battle.

On the American right, to the west, Stirling still held the line against Grant. Stirling held on for four hours, still unaware of the British flanking maneuver, and some of his own troops thought they were winning the day because the British had been unable to take their position. However, by 11:00 am, Grant, reinforced by 2,000 marines, hit Stirling's center and Stirling was attacked on his left by the Hessians. Stirling pulled back but British troops were, at this point, coming at him in his rear too. The only escape route left was across a saltmarsh and Gowanus Creek which was 80 yards wide, on the other side of which was Brooklyn Heights.

Stirling ordered all of his troops, except 400 Maryland troops under the command of Major Mordecai Gist
Mordecai Gist
Mordecai Gist was a member of a prominent Maryland family who became a general in command of the Maryland Line in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War....

, to cross the creek. The 400 Maryland troops attacked the British, trying to buy time for the others to withdraw. Stirling and Gist led the 400 men in six consecutive attacks against the British. After the last assault the remaining troops retreated across the Gowanus Creek. Some of the men who tried to cross the marsh were bogged down in the mud under musket fire and others who could not swim were captured. Stirling was surrounded and, unwilling to surrender to the British, broke through the British lines to von Heister's Hessians and surrendered to them. 256 Maryland troops were killed in the assaults in front of the Old Stone House and over 100 were captured or wounded. Washington, watching from a redoubt on nearby Cobble Hill (intersection of today's Court Street and Atlantic Avenue), was to have said, "Good God, what brave fellows I must this day lose!". Although the troops did not want to stop advancing, Howe ordered all of his troops to halt, against the wishes of many of his officers, who believed that they should push on to Brooklyn Heights. Howe disagreed. Rather than assaulting the entrenched American position, he began more methodical siege operations to penetrate it.

Howe's failure to press the attack, and the reasons for it, have been disputed. He may have wished to avoid the casualties his army suffered when attacking the Continentals under similar circumstances at the Battle of Bunker Hill
Battle of Bunker Hill
The Battle of Bunker Hill took place on June 17, 1775, mostly on and around Breed's Hill, during the Siege of Boston early in the American Revolutionary War...

. He may also, in the European gentleman-officer tradition, have been giving Washington an opportunity to conclude his position was hopeless and surrender. Howe wrote that it would have been "inconsiderate and even criminal" to attack the surrounded Americans.

Aftermath



Escape to Manhattan


Washington and the army were surrounded on Brooklyn Heights with the East River to their backs. As the day went on, the British began to dig trenches, slowly coming closer and closer to the American defenses. By doing this, the British would not have to cross over open ground to assault the American defenses as they did in Boston the year before. Despite this perilous situation, Washington ordered 1,200 more men from Manhattan to Brooklyn on August 28. The men that came over were two Pennsylvania regiments and Colonel John Glover's regiment from Marblehead, Massachusetts
Marblehead, Massachusetts
Marblehead is a town in Essex County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 19,808 at the 2010 census. It is home to the Marblehead Neck Wildlife Sanctuary and Devereux Beach...

. In command of the Pennsylvania troops was Thomas Mifflin
Thomas Mifflin
Thomas Mifflin was an American merchant and politician from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was a major general in the Continental Army during the American Revolution, a member of the Pennsylvania Provincial Assembly, a Continental Congressman from Pennsylvania, President of the Continental...

 who, after arriving, volunteered to inspect the outer defenses and report back to Washington. In these outer defenses, small skirmishes were still taking place. On the afternoon of August 28, it began to rain and Washington had his cannon bombard the British well into the night.

As the rain continued Washington sent a letter instructing General William Heath
William Heath
William Heath was an American farmer, soldier, and political leader from Massachusetts who served as a major general in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War....

, who was at Kings Bridge
Kingsbridge, Bronx
Kingsbridge is a working class residential neighborhood geographically located in the northwest Bronx in New York City. The neighborhood is part of Bronx Community Board 8. Its boundaries are Van Cortlandt Park to the north, Goulden Avenue to the east, West 225th Street to the south, and Irwin...

 between Manhattan and what is now the Bronx, to send every flat bottomed boat or sloop without delay in case battalions of infantry from New Jersey might come to reinforce their position. At 4:00 p.m., on August 29, Washington held a meeting with his generals. Mifflin advised Washington to retreat to Manhattan while Mifflin and his Pennsylvania Regiments made up the rear guard, holding the line until the rest of the army had withdrawn. The Generals agreed unanimously with Mifflin that retreat
Withdrawal (military)
A withdrawal is a type of military operation, generally meaning retreating forces back while maintaining contact with the enemy. A withdrawal may be undertaken as part of a general retreat, to consolidate forces, to occupy ground that is more easily defended, or to lead the enemy into an ambush...

 was the best option and Washington had orders go out by the evening.

The troops were told that they were to gather up all their ammunition and baggage and prepare for a night attack. By 9:00 p.m., the sick and wounded began to move to the Brooklyn Ferry in preparation for being evacuated. At 11:00 p.m. Glover and his Massachusetts troops, who were sailors and fishermen, began to evacuate the troops.
As more troops were evacuated, more troops were ordered to withdraw from the lines and march to the ferry landing. Wagon wheels were muffled, and men were forbidden to talk. Mifflin's rear guard was tending campfires to deceive the British and convince them that nothing was going on. At 4:00 am, on August 30, Mifflin was informed that it was his unit's turn to evacuate. Mifflin told the man who had been sent to order him to leave, Major Alexander Scammell
Alexander Scammell
Alexander Scammell 1744 - October 6, 1781) was a Harvard educated attorney and an officer in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War...

, that he must be mistaken, but Scammell insisted that he was not and Mifflin ordered his troops to move out. When Mifflin's troops were within a half mile of the ferry landing Washington rode up and demanded to know why they were not at their defenses. Edward Hand
Edward Hand
-Early life and career:Hand was born in Clyduff, King's County, Ireland January 10, 1742, and was baptised in Shinrone. His father was John Hand. Among his immediate neighbours were the Kearney family, ancestors of U.S. President Barack Obamba [1]...

, who was leading the troops, tried to explain what had happened, but Mifflin arrived shortly. Washington exclaimed "Good God! General Mifflin, I am afraid you have ruined us!" Mifflin explained that he had been told that it was his turn to evacuate by Scammell; Washington told him it had been a mistake. Mifflin then led his troops back to the outer defenses.

Artillery, supplies, and troops were all being evacuated across the river at this time but it was not going as fast as Washington had anticipated and daybreak soon came. A fog settled in and concealed the evacuation from the British. British patrols noticed that there did not seem to be any American pickets and thus began to search the area. While they were doing this Washington, the last man left, stepped onto the last boat. At 7:00 am, the last American troops landed in Manhattan. All 9,000 troops had been evacuated without a single life lost.

Conclusion of the campaign


The British were stunned to find that Washington and the army had escaped. The next day, August 30, the British troops occupied the American fortifications. When news of the battle reached London, it caused many festivities to take place. Bells were rung across the city, candles were lit in windows and King George III gave General Howe the Order of the Bath
Order of the Bath
The Most Honourable Order of the Bath is a British order of chivalry founded by George I on 18 May 1725. The name derives from the elaborate mediæval ceremony for creating a knight, which involved bathing as one of its elements. The knights so created were known as Knights of the Bath...

.

General Howe remained inactive for the next half month, not attacking until September 15 when he landed a force
Landing at Kip's Bay
The Landing at Kip's Bay was a British amphibious landing during the New York Campaign in the American Revolutionary War on September 15, 1776, occurring on the eastern shore of present-day Manhattan....

 at Kip's Bay. The British quickly occupied the city. On September 21, a fire
Great Fire of New York (1776)
The Great Fire of New York was a devastating fire that burned through the night of September 21, 1776 on the west side of what then constituted New York City at the southern end of the island of Manhattan...

 of uncertain origin destroyed a quarter of New York City. In the immediate aftermath of the fire Nathan Hale
Nathan Hale
Nathan Hale was a soldier for the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. He volunteered for an intelligence-gathering mission in New York City but was captured by the British...

 was executed for spying. Although the Continentals were able to mount a victory at Harlem Heights
Battle of Harlem Heights
The Battle of Harlem Heights was fought during the New York and New Jersey campaign of the American Revolutionary War. The action took place in what is now the Morningside Heights and west Harlem neighborhoods of Manhattan in New York City on September 16, 1776....

 in mid-September, Howe defeated Washington in battle again at White Plains
Battle of White Plains
The Battle of White Plains was a battle in the New York and New Jersey campaign of the American Revolutionary War fought on October 28, 1776, near White Plains, New York. Following the retreat of George Washington's Continental Army northward from New York City, British General William Howe landed...

 and then again at Fort Washington
Battle of Fort Washington
The Battle of Fort Washington was fought in the American Revolutionary War between the United States and Great Britain on November 16, 1776. It was a decisive British victory, forcing the entire garrison of Fort Washington to surrender....

. Because of these defeats, Washington and the army retreated across New Jersey and into Pennsylvania.

Casualties


At the time, it was by far the largest battle ever fought in North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

. If the Royal Navy
Royal Navy
The Royal Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the British Armed Forces. Founded in the 16th century, it is the oldest service branch and is known as the Senior Service...

 is included, over 40,000 men took part in the battle. Howe reported his losses as 59 killed, 268 wounded and 31 missing. The Hessian casualties were 5 killed and 26 wounded. The Americans suffered much heavier losses. About 300 had been killed and over 1,000 captured.

Commemorations


Commemorations of the battle include:
  • The Minerva Statue: The battle is commemorated with a statue of Minerva
    Minerva
    Minerva was the Roman goddess whom Romans from the 2nd century BC onwards equated with the Greek goddess Athena. She was the virgin goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, commerce, weaving, crafts, magic...

     near the top of Battle Hill, the highest point of Brooklyn, in Green-wood Cemetery
    Green-Wood Cemetery
    Green-Wood Cemetery was founded in 1838 as a rural cemetery in Brooklyn, Kings County , New York. It was granted National Historic Landmark status in 2006 by the U.S. Department of the Interior.-History:...

    . The statue on the northwest corner of the cemetery looks toward the Statue of Liberty
    Statue of Liberty
    The Statue of Liberty is a colossal neoclassical sculpture on Liberty Island in New York Harbor, designed by Frédéric Bartholdi and dedicated on October 28, 1886...

    . In 2006, the Minerva statue was evoked in a successful defense to prevent a building from blocking the line of sight
    Sightline
    A sightline, or sight line, is a normally unobstructed line-of-sight between an intended observer and a stage, arena, or monument, for example. Sightlines are a particularly important consideration in theatre and stadium design, road junction layout and urban planning...

     from the cemetery to the Statue of Liberty in the harbor.
  • The Prison Ship Martyrs' Monument
    Prison Ship Martyrs' Monument
    The Prison Ship Martyrs' Monument in Fort Greene Park, in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, is a memorial to the more than 11,500 prisoners of war who died in captivity, known as the prison ship martyrs. The remains of a small fraction of all those who died on the ships are in a crypt below...

    : A freestanding Doric column in Fort Greene memorializing all those who died while kept prisoner on the British ships just off the shore of Brooklyn
    Prisoners in the American Revolutionary War
    During the American Revolutionary War the management and treatment of prisoners of war was very different from the standards of modern warfare. Modern standards, as outlined in the Geneva Conventions, expect captives to be held and cared for by their captors...

    , in Wallabout Bay
    Wallabout Bay
    Wallabout Bay is small body of water in Upper New York Bay along the northwest shore of the New York City borough of Brooklyn, between the present Williamsburg and Manhattan bridges, opposite Corlear's Hook on Manhattan to the west, across the East River...

    .
  • The Old Stone House: A re-constructed farmhouse (c.1699) that was at the center of the Marylander's delaying actions serves as a museum of the battle. It is located in J.J. Byrne Park, at 3rd Street and 5th Avenue, Brooklyn, and features models and maps.
  • Prospect Park
    Prospect Park (Brooklyn)
    Prospect Park is a 585-acre public park in the New York City borough of Brooklyn located between Park Slope, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Kensington, Windsor Terrace and Flatbush Avenue, Grand Army Plaza and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden...

    , Brooklyn, Battle Pass: along the eastern side of Center Drive in Prospect Park, Brooklyn is a large granite boulder with a brass plaque affixed, and another marker lies near the road for the Dongan Oak, a very large and old tree felled to block the pass from the British advance. In addition, in the park resides the Line of Defense marker erected by the Sons of the American Revolution
    Sons of the American Revolution
    The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution is a Louisville, Kentucky-based fraternal organization in the United States...

    , and the Monument& Maryland Memorial corinthian column.

See also


  • Dr. John Hart
    John Hart (doctor)
    Dr. John Hart A highly respected and eminent surgeon originally from Ipswich, Massachusetts, served as a Regimental Surgeon during the American Revolution...

    , Regimental Surgeon of Col Prescott's Regiment who was stationed at Governor's Island
  • Long Island order of battle
    Long Island order of battle
    The Battle of Long Island was a decisive British victory early in the American Revolutionary War over American forces under the command of Major General George Washington, and the opening battle in a successful British campaign to gain control of New York City in 1776...

  • New York and New Jersey campaign
    New York and New Jersey campaign
    The New York and New Jersey campaign was a series of battles for control of New York City and the state of New Jersey in the American Revolutionary War between British forces under General Sir William Howe and the Continental Army under General George Washington in 1776 and the winter months of 1777...


External links