Expanding on History – Connecticut, Delaware and New Jersey
Today’s post is going to take a look at two of the smaller states in the colonies and end with a look at one of the most central. Benedict Arnold hailed from the first state we will be taking a look at, Connecticut.
Even before the war began, Connecticut had passed anti-tory laws that forced many British loyalists to flee their homes or risk imprisonment. During the war, Connecticut remained largely free of occupation, and was able to provide enough food, cannon and other goods to become known as the Provision state. Despite the lack of occupation, Connecticut was the site of many British raids, including the burning of New London. Connecticut’s governor, Jonathan Trumbull, was the only colonial governor to champion the colonial cause. The state issued letters of marque to about 250 privateers, allowing them to receive prizes for damaging and capturing British ships and also contributed 2 frigates to the growing American naval forces.
Moving south to Delaware, we find a state that initially lacked enthusiasm for a separation from England. Eventually the state’s desire to remain a separate entity lead it’s leadership to support revolution as it’s larger, stronger neighbors did. The only real engagement on Delaware soil was fought on September 3, 1777 at Cooch’s Bridge in New Castle County. It is believed to be the first time that the Stars and Stripes was flown in battle.
Our final colony to discuss in this post is New Jersey, where everything is legal (just a little Hamilton joke). New Jersey’s strategic location made it vital to the war effort and George Washington spent more time in New Jersey than any other colony during the war. More than 90 military engagements were fought in New Jersey, including the landmark battles of Trenton, Princeton and Monmouth. Despite this military pedigree, support for revolution was not universal among New Jersey’s citizens. A strong and organized Loyalist faction would keep the state bitterly divided throughout the war. William Franklin, Ben Franklin’s son, was the last royal governor of New Jersey and perhaps her best-known Loyalist. The battle of Monmouth was fought in New Jersey and was the longest battle of the war. Monmouth proved to be the last major confrontation between the British and American armies in the northern theater.
So as we continue south, we find the sentiments toward rebellion are quieter and more reserved then the New England states. Will you take the more reserved path towards independence, or will you work in congress to convince your comrades that leaving England is suicide?
You can make those decisions and more by joining us on December 3rd in Smithtown, NY for The World Turns Upside Down – Tickets are on sale now! Do not throw away your shot…
- Brian Stacy
- November 2, 2016
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