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Posted on Jul 24, 2006 in Front Page Features, Stuff We Like

Walk Where They Fought: Path to Victory!

By Barnet Schecter and Robert A. Selig

Tour Section 5 – Pennsylvania

At the end of August 1781, the French and American troops reached Trenton and crossed the Delaware River into Pennsylvania. Marching south, with the Americans in front, they paraded through Philadelphia on September 2-3. With about half of the Continental troops traveling by row-barge, they proceeded to Delaware.

Philadelphia: City Tavern; Independence Hall; American Philosophical Society Hall; Carpenters’ Hall; Penn’s Landing area; Tablet for Continental Army Camp at City Hall (behind a construction fence on the inner court of City Hall); Fort Mifflin; Bartram House; Declaration House; Old St. Joseph’s Catholic Church; “A Man Full of Trouble” Tavern; Powell House; Chew House (Cliveden). Fairmount Park mansions: Belmont Mansion; Boelsen House; Laurel Hill; Mount Pleasant; Ridgeland; Woodford; Lemon Hill Mansion; Sweetbriar Mansion; Strawberry Mansion; and the Woodlands

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Germantown: Battlefield at Germantown

Chadds Ford: Battlefield at Brandywine

Chester City: Chester Courthouse

Lower Dublin: Continental Army Camp

Prospect Park: Campsite near Morton Homestead

Bristol: Campsite of Second New York Regiment and King George II Inn

Markus Hook: Campsite of Second New York Regiment

Red Lion: Red Lion Tavern (building burned circa 1980; only the site remains)

Tour Section 6 – Delaware

Like Connecticut, Delaware is in the process of installing interpretive panels. For more information, contact the Historical Society of Delaware at hsd -at- hsd.org or contact J. Harry Feldman at the Greater Wilmington Convention & Visitors Bureau, 800-489-6664. For a calendar of events in Delaware, contact DelRev225th -at- @aol.com.

In Delaware, unlike the other states, the allied forces traveled along a single land route – Old Baltimore Pike – the road from Christiana, Delaware, to Elkton, Maryland.

Claymont: Thomas Robinson House and Swan Tavern

Wilmington: Arthur Penny House; Brandywine Village State Park and Marker; Continental Army Camp; Richard Richardson House and Mill; Continental Army Hospital; French Army Camp; Mordecai Woodward Ropewalk and Houses; and “Tavern at the Sign of the Ship” Marker

Newark: Cooch’s Bridge Monument; Thomas Cooch House; and Continental Army Camp

Christiana: Continental Army Landing Site/Camp and Christiana Historic District

Newport: French Army Camps

Tour Section 7 – Maryland

Arriving at Head of Elk (now Elkton), Maryland, the allied forces proceeded in three basic groups along different routes. Some 2,000 troops were transported by water from Plum Point (now Charlestown) to Annapolis. Washington rode on horseback to Baltimore and continued to Mount Vernon, Virginia, with Rochambeau following a day later, on September 10. The remaining French units traveled overland, crossing the Susquehanna River to reach Annapolis.

For a calendar of events at Elkton, contact Eric Mease at Eric.F.Mease -at- @USA.dupont.com.

Perryville: Principio Iron Works and Rodgers Tavern

Darlington: Deer Creek Friends Meeting House

Baltimore: Camden Yards Baseball Stadium with Commemorative Marker; Mount Clare Mansion; Mount Vernon Place Historic District with London Coffee House; South Central Avenue Historic District with Harford Run Encampment Site; Old Town Friends Meeting House; and Ridgely’s Delight Historic District

Crownsville: Scott’s House (Belvoir)

Millersville: Rising Sun Inn

Dorsey: Rockburn; Belmont; and Troy Hill

Annapolis: Colonial Annapolis Historic District; Maryland Statehouse; U.S. Naval Academy; Crypt of John Paul Jones; and Monument to French Soldiers

Bowie: Belaire Mansion

Elkton (Head of Elk): Historic Elk Landing, including Hollingsworth House and Mitchell House

Elkville: Elkridge Furnace Inn

Tour Section 8 – Virginia

While most of the French and American forces embarked from Annapolis, Baltimore, and Head of Elk, the French army’s wagon train traveled overland from Annapolis to Williamsburg, Virginia, after transferring its load to vessels in Annapolis. Departing from Mount Vernon, Washington and Rochambeau joined Lafayette in Williamsburg on September 14. Two weeks later, with their forces assembled, the allies set out to besiege Cornwallis at Yorktown.

For a calendar of events, visit www.historyisfun.org/news/calendar.cfm and www.siegeofyorktown.org.

Stafford County: Aquia Church

Alexandria: Christ Church; Gadsby’s Tavern; and Alexandria Encampment Marker

Zion Crossroads: Green Springs Historic District

Hanover: Hanover Tavern

Near Mount Vernon: W3R Marker and Washington-Rochambeau Route to Victory Display, near the entrance to Historic Mount Vernon; the reconstructed stonework of Washington’s Grist Mill; and “Washington-Rochambeau Highway” (from Mount Vernon to Yorktown)
Lorton: Gunston Hall and Pohick Church

Prince William County: Rippon Lodge and Prince William County Marker, indicating preserved segment of the original Potomac Path
Fredericksburg: Fredericksburg Historic District, including a marker at the northern end of the city; Kenmore House; Home of Mary Washington, George Washington’s mother; James Monroe Museum; and Rising Sun Tavern

New Kent: Marker at New Kent Courthouse

Williamsburg: Williamsburg Historic District (for the Battle of Green Spring re-enactment, visit www.battleofgreenspring.org)
Charlotte County: Charlotte Courthouse Historic District

Gloucester: Gloucester County Court House Square Historic District

Yorktown: Washington-Rochambeau sign at Route 1020 and Colonial Parkway; Yorktown Battlefield; and Yorktown Victory Center.

17_WWF_19_d_LOC_VicMon_s.jpg 17_WWF_20_d_NPS_30671_s.jpg
Image Credit: NATIONAL PARK SERVICE
The Yorktown Victory Monument stands in Colonial National Historical Park in Yorktown, Va.
Image Credit: NATIONAL PARK SERVICE
Cannons are lined up on the Yorktown Battlefield.

17_WWF_21_d_DOD_04405_s.jpg
Image Credit: DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
Dressed in Revolutionary War uniforms, members
of Britain’s Fourth Royal Artillery Unit demonstrate
cannon firing at the Yorktown Battlefield.

Tour Section 9 – Massachusetts

In June 1781, a convoy from France arrived at Boston with some 600 soldiers and two companies of artillery for Rochambeau’s force. The artillery units and 400 of the men were healthy enough to march to Dedham, then to Wrentham the next day, and finally to Providence, Rhode Island, where they joined the main force for the march south.

When the French came north in 1782, they retraced the route to Providence and then went on to Boston rather than to Newport. About 5,000 French troops marched into Boston in December 1782 and boarded troop transports bound for the Caribbean Islands.

Charlestown: Bunker Hill

Cambridge: Longfellow House; Fort Washington; Harvard Yard Historic District; and Massachusetts Hall at Harvard University

Boston: Castle Island (Fort Independence)

About the Authors

Barnet Schecter is a Yale-educated scholar and noted historian who specializes in military history related to New York. His is also the author of “The Devil’s Own Work: The Civil War Draft Riots and the Fight to Reconstruct America” and “The Battle for New York: The City at the Heart of the American Revolution.”

Robert A. Selig has a PhD in German history from the Universität Würzburg in Germany. He has authored two books and nearly 100 articles on the American Revolutionary War and German-American history.

Since this article was published, we have received feedback which can be found here.

Play It!

You can relive the American Revolution by playing games such as Campaign 1776: The American Revolution (HPS), Birth of America (Ageod), For Liberty! (Battlefront), and Horse & Musket (Shrapnel Games) at playit.armchairgeneral.com.

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1 Comment

  1. Can you please edit your comment under the picture of the Artillery above Section 9. These are not British uniforms, but Continental Artillery; they have light blue field pieces (a color established by BG Knox) the yellow hat trim of artillery (lasted up though the War of 1812) , and the black faced with red coats of the Ist Continental Artillery.

    I have been in the Artillery since 1975 and can send you references if you need them.

    Thank you,

    Ralph S. Siegrist
    LTC, PAARNG
    Rear Det Commander
    1-108th FA BN

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