Image courtesy of Colonial National Historical Park, Yorktown.

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Meeting Notes: March 17, 2021

ARRT-Richmond 3/17/21 Meeting Notes

Pre-Guest Speaker Notes:

ARRT-R’s next meeting is scheduled for 5/19/21 at 6:30 p.m.  This is a zoom meeting!  Sign in

details will be provided in the May newsletter.  Thanks again to Peggy Watson for allowing us to utilize the Osher network.

Jack Kelly will be our May 19 speaker, presenting virtually on his new book “Valcour: The 1776 Campaign That Saved the Cause of Liberty.”

Mr. Kelly is an award-winning author and historian.  His books include Band of Giants: The Amateur Soldiers Who Won America’s Independence, which received the DAR History Medal.  He is also the author of The Edge of Anarchy, Heaven’s Ditch, and Gunpowder and is a New York Foundation for the Arts fellow in Nonfiction Literature.  Kelly has appeared on The History Channel, National Public Radio, and C-Span.  He lives in New York’s Hudson Valley.

Guest Speaker:

Gary Ecelbarger, “Observing George Washington During the First Month of the Philadelphia Campaign: Old Challenges and New Discoveries, August 24 – September 23, 1777.”

Mr. Ecelbarger is the author of seven books on the Civil War and Lincoln.  He is an experienced tour guide of Revolutionary War and Civil War sites and is authoring a campaign biography of Washington during the struggle for Philadelphia.  He’s also an ARRT-Richmond member and a long-time friend.

Washington to the Continental Congress – September 10 from Chad’s Ford:

“The Enemy are now lying near Kennets Square and in a tolerably compact body. They have parties advanced on the Lancaster Road and on those leading over this Ford & to Wilmington.  Maneuvering  appears to be their plan; I hope, not with-standing, that we shall be able to find out their real – intended route & to defeat their purposes . . .”

Challenges in Defining the Continental Army in late August/early September 1777:

Numerical size

                Types and quality of arms


Number of cannons

Number of wagons

How Many Continental’s in Delaware?

Five Infantry Divisions; 11 Brigades (12th Brigade formed August 31st)

Troop Strength Returns: May 20th vs. November 3rd

13,000 Infantry present + 1,200 – 1,500 Dragoons and Artillery 

                14,500 present – 13,000 to 14,000 fit for duty

3,000 with combat experience

Washington’s Extended Military Family in Delaware & Pennsylvania:

“Washington’s Pen Men”

Colonel Robert Harrison

Colonel Timothy Pickering

Lt. Colonel Richard Meade

Lt. Colonel John Fitzgerald

Lt. Colonel Alexander Hamilton

Lt. Colonel Tench Tilghman

Lt. Colonel Peter Thornton

        Captain Caleb Gibbs

MG Marquis de Lafayette

MG Arthur St. Clair

MG of the Day (ex. Greene, Stirling)

BG Casimir Pulaski

BG Henry Knox

BG John Cadwalder

Colonel Charles Pinckney

Colonel Clement Biddle

Lt. Colonel Peter Thornton

Captain George Lewis

Dr. Benjamin Rush

Jacob Broom

Campaign Timeline:

August 25th – British land at Head of Elk

September 11th – Battle of Brandywine

September 26th – British occupy Philadelphia

October 4th – Battle of Germantown

December 19th – Americans arrive at Valley Forge

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