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7. State the immediate causes that led to the Declaration of Inde
pendence. 8. Read the Declaration in class and note or underline the passages that
show most strongly why the colonists felt they were justified in their
position. 9. What advantages had the Americans in the contest? What disad
vantages? 10. Contrast the purpose of King George with that of the Americans. 11. What events do you associate with these places: St. John's Church,
Richmond, Virginia; Faneuil Hall; Old South Church; Concord Bridge;
Old North Church; Washington Elm, Cambridge? 12. Prepare a chronological table of important Revolutionary events in the New England section; thus:
New England in the Revolution
Names of Leaders
Effect on the Colonists
13. Make an outline of the chapter.
COMPOSITION SUBJECTS 1. Imagine that you are thirteen years old on April 19, 1775, and that
you live on the road between Boston and Lexington. What wakens
you in the night? What do you hear and see during the day? 2. “What heroes from the woodland sprung!” From the suggestion
in this line by the poet Bryant, review the scene when George Washington took command of the army at Cambridge. Describe the landscape, the commander, the onlookers, and the army. Of what sorts of
individuals was the army composed? 3. Give a conversation between a “Tory” boy and the son of a “Patriot."
Camden SOUTH CAROLINA
THE FIELD OF WAR
DURING THE REVOLUTION
TWO YEARS OF FIGHTING IN THE MIDDLE STATES
169. The British go to the Middle States. When Howe evacuated Boston, British military operations were, for this and the two following additional reasons, transferred from New England to the Middle States:
(a) The Middle States people were supposed to be more loyal to the King than were the New Englanders.
(6) The Middle States had more good harbors and rivers than New England, in which to land troops and supplies.
170. They capture New York. The British planned to capture Manhattan Island. They hoped by this means not only to make it impossible for Americans to attack Canada over the Hudson-Champlain waterway, but to cut off the Middle and Southern States from any help that they might expect from New England.
In the hope of preventing this, the Continental Army hurried to protect the city of New York. On August 27, 1776, a sharp battle took place on Long Island, in which Howe's forces, now twice as large as Washington's, and in far better condition, easily defeated the Americans. Washington would have been unwise to fight when the odds against him were so great, so he followed the methods often adopted by the best generals, when they are outnumbered, by seeking a more secure position, whence he could hope to worry the enemy in some other way.1 Under cover of a dense fog he successfully retreated at night across East River with ten thousand of his men. The enemy pressed him so closely, however, that about a fortnight later he felt obliged to evacuate
1 This waiting method is called the “Fabian policy,” because it was practiced by a famous Roman general, Fabius Maximus.
Manhattan Island and retreat a short distance up the Hudson River.1
171. Washington retreats across New Jersey. Having taken New York, Howe next prepared to capture Philadelphia. Hearing of this, Washington took most of his soldiers over into New Jersey, thus placing himself as a barrier between the enemy and the Quaker capital. The British followed him closely; but his movements were more rapid than theirs, and he burned bridges behind him, besides destroying food and such other material along his road as might have been useful to the foe. This so delayed the British that once they were three weeks in marching seventy miles.
172. Battle of Trenton. Nevertheless, Washington saw that he was not yet strong enough to hold New Jersey. He had ordered General Charles Lee to join him, with seven thousand soldiers, from the east side of the Hudson; but that officer had himself aspired to be commander-in-chief and disobeyed, apparently hoping that Washington would be beaten. On account of this, the latter, early in December (1776), deemed it prudent to retreat across the Delaware River into Pennsylvania. In doing so he seized all the boats on this broad and deep stream, up and down for a hundred miles, in order that the enemy might not easily follow him ; for having no boats they would have to wait until the river froze over, so as to cross on the ice.
Over a thousand Hessian soldiers were stationed at the village of Trenton, near the east bank, to prevent the Americans from returning into New Jersey. But their officers were careless and did not keep a good watch of the “rebels, ”
1 While Washington was in New York, and Howe occupying the abandoned American trenches on Brooklyn Heights, across the East River, Captain Nathan Hale, a talented and lovable young colonial, twenty-one years of age, was sent as a spy into Howe's camp, to learn about the movements of that general. In performing this duty he of course ran a great risk, for a spy caught in the act expects, under the rules of war, to suffer death. He was captured, and after somewhat harsh treatment was hanged the following morning. Before dying, Hale declared, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.
for whose military ability they had much contempt. On Christmas night, while the Hessians were feasting, Washington and his men at great risk secretly recrossed the Delaware, which now was filled with cakes of floating ice, and in a heavy snowstorm captured most of the astonished revelers, together with their valuable military supplies.
173. The patriotic services of Robert Morris. But although Washington had won this victory, his army was
slowly breaking up.
The soldiers were poorly armed, clothed, and fed, and were not receiving their pay, upon which their families must be supported. Moreover, the men had enlisted for short terms, which in most cases had ended; and worn-out and discouraged they now wished to return to their homes.
At this critical time there came to the rescue a rich and influential Philadelphia merchant and banker, Robert Morris, to whom Washington had appealed for aid. He not only himself gave freely to the support of the patriot army, but went from house to house in that city and borrowed money to pay the poor, barefooted, and half-starved soldiers. He was soon able to send $50,000 to the army; and this sum,