American Revolution: Major Events 1776

The following list is important dates during the year 1776;

                                                                     1776

1 January: American forces besieging Boston reorganized in accordance with Congressional resolve of preceding November, making this portion of patriot Army “Continental in every respect”; but only about 5,500 were present and fit for duty.

1 January: First patriot flag bearing seven red and six white stripes raised at Cambridge, Massachusetts, in recognition of reorganization of Continental forces before Boston.

1 January: Governor Dunmore, following patriot refusal to allow him to send ashore parties for provisions, bombarded and set fire to Norfolk, Virginia’s largest town.

5 January: New Hampshire adopted new written constitution replacing its colonial charter, first of 13 colonies to do so.

5 January: Continental Congress ordered work on Constitution Island (opposite West Point) suspended and emphasis placed on Fort Montgomery.

6 January: Alexander Hamilton’s New York artillery battery constituted organization that became only Continental Army unit to have officially recognized modern active army descendant, the 1st Battalion, 5th Artillery.

10 January: Royal Governor Josiah Martin of North Carolina, from aboard British sloop Scorpion, urged loyalists to gather near Wilmington on Cape Fear River to collaborate with forthcoming British Army offensive in South.

10 January: Thomas Paine’s pamphlet Common Sense published in Philadelphia, urging American declaration of independence.

12-14 January: Sailors from British ships stationed at Newport raided Patience, Hope, and Prudence Islands in Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island, and on Prudence engaged militia from Bristol and Warren in 3-hour fight.

20 January: Patriot General Philip Schuyler in New York leading 3,000 militia forced Sir John Johnson of Johnstown, New York, and 700 other loyalists, to surrender, thereby breaking back of loyalist resistance in Albany area and assuring neutrality of neighboring Indians for some time to come.

20 January: General Henry Clinton left Boston with about 1,200 troops to lead British expedition against Carolinas.

23 January: Patriot group from Elizabethtown (modern Elizabeth), New Jersey, led by William Alexander (better, if inaccurately, known as Lord Stirling) and Elias Dayton, captured British supply ship Blue Mountain Valley 40 miles off Sandy Hook.

24 January: Colonel Henry Knox, Washington’s artillery chief, who on the proceeding 15 November had been sent to fetch cannon captured at Ticonderoga, returned to Cambridge, Massachusetts, with 55 guns.

27 February: Congress resolved to establish separate Middle and Southern Departments of Continental Army, former including New York through Maryland and latter Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia.

27 February: Loyalist force of 1,400 including 1,000 Scotch Highlanders advancing toward Wilmington in hope of joining up with British Army force under Clinton was ambushed at Moore’s Creek Bridge, North Carolina, about 15 miles north of Wilmington, and then caught between patriot forces in front and rear. In the fight at bridge, loyalists lost 50-70, patriots 2; but afterward more than 850 loyalists were taken prisoner.

2-5 March: Heavy patriot bombardment of Boston began on 2 March, and on night of 4-5 March darkness concealed Washington’s occupation of Dorchester Heights and emplacement there of cannon from Ticonderoga.

3 March: Secret Committee of Correspondence decided to send “commercial” agent to France to purchase military supplies, and Congress selected Silas Deane of Connecticut for this mission.

3-4 March: Patriot sailors and marines attacked New Providence (now Nassau) in Bahamas, capturing 100 cannon and mortars and a large quantity of other useful military stores. This action was first in which American marines participated as an organized unit.

7 March: Royal Governor Sir James Wright, who fled Savannah, Georgia, on 11 February to take refuge on British warship, returned with naval reinforcements on 6 March, captured 11 rice laden merchant ships, and threatened to attack Savannah from Hutchinson’s Island opposite. Counterattack drove off British and left patriots in control of Savannah for next three years.

9-13 March: British sloop Otter sailing up Chesapeake Bay was attacked and driven away by Maryland ship Defense and two Maryland militia companies stationed at Chariton Creek, Northampton County, Virginia.

17 March: General Howe having abandoned initial plan to attack new patriot fortifications on Dorchester Heights and realizing they made British position in Boston untenable, had decided on 7 March to evacuate Boston and on this date did so, taking with him 1,000 loyalists, and sailing to Halifax, Nova Scotia.

23 March: Congress authorized privateering, resolving “that the inhabitants of these colonies be permitted to fit out armed vessels, to cruise on the enemies of the United Colonies.”

25 March: Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Charles Carrol of Carrolton, and Samuel Chase left Philadelphia as envoys of Congress to Canada, to negotiate with Canadians toward union with 13 coastal colonies in rebellion.

6 April: Congress, disregarding British Navigation Acts and Prohibitory Act of December 1775, opened ports of United Colonies to trade of all nations, except for trade with British dominions and in British goods, and except also for import of slaves.

12 April: Provincial Congress of North Carolina instructed its delegates in Continental Congress to vote for independence first of new governments of United Colonies to do so.

13 April: General Washington arrived in New York, to which bulk of Continental forces that had besieged Boston had already been moved.

2 May: France secretly allotted munitions from royal arsenals valued at one million livres ($200,000) to American patriots, and Spain followed suit.

4 May: Act known as “Rhode Island Declaration of Independence” passed by its General Assembly. While not mentioning independence specifically it denied King’s authority and authorized Rhode Island delegates to accept any Congressional measures they deemed prudent and effectual.

6 May: With large reinforcements under General John Burgoyne about to reach Quebec, Canada, General Carleton led sally from city that ended American siege begun preceding December and started patriot troops under General John Thomas on precipitous retreat.

8-9 May: Thirteen Pennsylvania galleys attacked two British warships in Delaware River off mouth of Christiana Creek (near Wilmington), Delaware, and drove them down the river. Patriots lost one killed and two wounded in actions on successive days.

15 May: Virginia Convention instructed Richard Henry Lee and its other delegates to Continental Congress to propose independence.

16 May: At The Cedars, Canada, on St. Lawrence River about 30 miles below Montreal, patriot force of 400 surrendered almost without fighting and smaller relieving force was also overwhelmed.

19 May: Near Nantasket, Massachusetts, long boats from British men-of-war attempted to board patriot ships Franklin and Lady Washington, but were driven off after hand-to-hand fighting in which captain of Franklin and one other were killed and British may have lost as many as 70 killed including those drowned.

4 June: British expeditionary force of more than 2,000 troops under General Clinton and nine warships under Admiral Sir Peter Parker arrived off Charleston, South Carolina. General Charles Lee assigned by Congress to command Southern Department, arrived same day to direct defenses.

7 June: Richard Henry Lee, delegate from Virginia, proposed resolution by Congress declaring independence of 13 United Colonies from Great Britain.

8-9 June: After retreat from Quebec, 2,000 of best troops of reinforced patriot Army in Canada attacked Three Rivers (Trois Riveres), half way between Montreal and Quebec. Unknown to patriots Three Rivers had been heavily reinforced and attackers lost nearly 400 in casualties, British 17. This action ended any American hope of maintaining hold on St. Lawrence valley.

9 June: Montreal, Canada, evacuated by patriot force of 300 under General Arnold.

10 June: Pierre Augustin Caron Beaumarchais, French playwright and watchmaker, who had set up fictitious Hortalez et Cie as intermediary to transmit French and Spanish munitions to American patriots, received one million livres in gold from French government to initiate financing of his operations.

11 June: Congress appointed committee of five delegates to draft declaration of independence.

12 June: Virginia Convention adopted Declaration (or Bill) of Rights, drafted by George Mason.

12 June: Remnants of American forces, beaten at Trois Riveres and subject to numerous ambushes in route, arrived at base at Sorel, Canada.

12-13 June: On 12 June, Congress resolved to establish Board of War and Ordnance, to consist of five of its members, and next day this board, ancestor of War Department-Department of the Army headquarters, was established.

14 June: Remnant of American troops in St. Lawrence valley, now under General John Sullivan, began retiring from Sorel, Canada, pressed by advancing British forces. Patriots retreated first to Isle aux Noir at north end of Lake Champlain and by early July to Crown Point, New York, thus ending Canadian invasion of 1775-76.

25 June: General William Howe arrived off Sandy Hook, New Jersey, with small British force, but one that was to grow to nearly 32,000 encamped on Staten Island, New York, by 12 August, largest single military body in America during Revolutionary War.

28 June: In New York City Thomas Hickey, belonging to General Washington’s personal guard, executed for “sedition and mutiny,” after discovery of loyalist inspired plot that allegedly included plan to assassinate Washington and other patriot generals.

28 June: British naval forces attacked fortified Sullivan’s Island guarding entrance to harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. Coordinated land attack by Clinton’s troops from neighboring Long Island proved impossible because of deep water, and British warships were worsted in spirited exchange of fire with patriot forces. Patriots lost about 37, the British 225, and British gave up and sailed away, ending efforts to invade the South for nearly three years.

2 July: General Howe with 9,300 troops landed unopposed on Staten Island, New York.

2 July: Congress at Philadelphia approved resolution of independence introduced by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia on 7 June.

4 July: Congress at Philadelphia approved formal Declaration of Independence, as drafted by Thomas Jefferson and other members of committee appointed for this purpose, and in doing so “solemnly published and declared that these United Colonies are, and of Right, ought to be Free and Independent States.”

8-10 July: Patriot forces attacked and captured Gwynn Island, Virginia, off western shore of Chesapeake Bay where Governor Dunmore had taken refuge with some 500 white and Negro loyalist’s troops. Dunmore and survivors were forced to flee, and after raid up Potomac River went to Lynnhaven Roads near Cape Henry and then to New York.

16 July: Lord Dunmore landed some of his force on St. George’s Island, Maryland, near mouth of Potomac River, but was driven off by local militia.

23 July: Lord Dunmore in sailing up Potomac River destroyed several plantations and then turned into Occoquan Creek, Virginia, to its falls and village, where he destroyed mill before being driven off by Prince William County militia.

22 August: British disembarked 15,000 troops on Long Island, New York, and during next few days Washington sent large patriot reinforcements to Long Island to meet this threat and British also built up their initial landing force.

27 August: Battle of Long Island (Long Island Campaign) fought between about 10,000 American defenders and 22,000 British and German troops. Americans were badly defeated and pushed into narrow confinement of Brooklyn Heights, losing about 1,400 (1,100 captured) against British losses of 375.

28 August: At Jamaica, New York, after British victory day before, militia detachment of 100 commanded by patriot General Nathaniel Woodhull was overwhelmed by much larger British force.

29-30 August: Washington first reinforced Brooklyn Heights after the defeat in Battle of Long Island, then in masterly fashion secretly withdrew his entire force at night across the East River onto Manhattan Island, above New York City, without loss.

6-7 September: In New York harbor Sgt. Ezra Lee attempted first submarine attack in history of warfare in David Bushnell’s “American Turtle,” but copper bottoms of British ships off Governor’s Island were too thick to be damaged by powder charges released from “Turtle.”

9 September: Congress resolved that in future all of its commissions and other instruments should be issued in name of United States instead of United Colonies as heretofore.

11 September: Three-man delegation from Congress (Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and Edward Rutledge) discussed possibilities of peace with Admiral Lord Richard Howe on Staten Island, but fruitlessly when Americans discovered Howe had no powers to negotiate, only to refer proposals to London.

15 September: British troops from Long Island, under protection of warships, crossed East River and routed patriot forces at Kip’s Bay (presently 34th Street) on Manhattan Island almost without firing shot. Washington managed to extricate his troops from New York City which British then occupied.

16 September: After Washington withdrew his army to heights of northwestern Manhattan Island, he sent out small reconnaissance force to check British near site of present Columbia University. With both sides putting in reinforcement’s as the battle of Harlem Heights developed. Patriots lost 130, British and German troops involved about 170, and American morale was much improved by this successful holding action

16 September: Congress resolved that 88 battalions of Continental Army troops, apportioned among the states according to population, should be enlisted as soon as possible for duration of war. This action was essential since existing Continental forces were enlisted only to end of 1776.

20 September: Congress adopted Articles of War, “rules and articles to govern the armies of the United States.”

21-22 September: Captain Nathan Hale of Connecticut captured by British on Manhattan Island while returning to American lines, and executed as spy. On 12 September he had volunteered for an intelligence mission within British lines on Long Island.

23 September: Patriot force of 240 attempted to recapture Montresor’s (now Randall’s) Island, New York, at East River end of Harlem River, but was repulsed with loss of 14.

26 September: Congress appointed Benjamin Franklin, Silas Deane, and Thomas Jefferson as commissioners to court of France. When Jefferson declined to serve, Arthur Lee was appointed in his place.

11-13 October: By June 1776 British had 13,000 troops in Canada, but invasion path by water route southward from the St. Lawrence River was barred until October by flotilla hastily constructed by General Benedict Arnold on Lake Champlain. On 11 October, Arnold led his ships northward and met principal British ships at Valcour Island, New York, then lost most of his ships in next two days and a quarter of his troops were casualties. Although Arnold was defeated, his operations thwarted British invasion from Canada in 1776, when it might have been fatal to patriot cause.

12 October: General Howe’s attempt to flank Washington’s force in northern Manhattan started with landing at Throg’s Neck, New York (northern end of modern Throg’s Neck Bridge over Long Island Sound), but British were unable to get across bridge and causeway to dry ground because of stiff patriot rifle and cannon fire.

14 October: After defeating Arnold’s flotilla on Lake Champlain, General Carleton’s invading force on this date occupied Crown Point, New York, but because of American strength at Ticonderoga and lateness of season withdrew to Canada on 3 November.

18 October: Frustrated at Throg’s Neck, General Howe shifted northward to Pell’s Point and fought an action at Pelham, New York. American units posted there delayed British advance and helped Washington’s safe withdrawal with main Continental force from Manhattan to White Plains.

22-23 October: Force of Continentals attempted to surprise and cut off from main British Army Maj. Robert Rogers’ “Queen’s American Rangers,” stationed at Mamaroneck, New York. Surprise was incomplete, but patriots came off with 36 prisoners and booty, at cost of 15 casualties.

27 October: British attacked Fort Washington, New York, from both land and river sides, but attack was driven off with considerable loss to enemy, including one warship badly damaged.

28 October: Having failed to flank Washington’s main force of 14,500, Howe attacked it with 13,000 at White Plains, New York. Although Americans again withdrew northward after battle, British suffered heavier losses (300 or more to 150) and once again failed to trap and destroy Washington’s army.

9-10 November: Washington with part of his army crossed Hudson River and moved into northeastern New Jersey.

13-29 November: Patriots from Machias, Maine, and Bay of Fundy region, attacked and besieged Fort Cumberland, Nova Scotia (near modern Amherst), but were repelled when reinforcements arrived from Halifax. This was principal armed effort of American patriots to get New England settlers of Acadia aligned with American cause.

16 November: Fort Washington, New York, surrendered to British. After battle of White Plains, Howe pulled his army back for another attack on Fort Washington on northern Manhattan Island overlooking Hudson River. Using 8,000 troops he forced surrender of more than 2,800 Continentals after fighting that cost enemy about 450 killed and wounded and Americans about 300.

20 November: Fort Lee, New Jersey, on Hudson River opposite Fort Washington, made untenable after latter’s capture, was abandoned to British with heavy losses in materiel, and some 160 Americans were taken prisoner.

21 November-7 December: After loss of Fort Lee, Washington with about 4,000 troops retreated across New Jersey and Delaware River into Pennsylvania, with some of Howe’s forces under General Charles Cornwallis following in close pursuit to Delaware.

8 December: With Washington’s forces safely across Delaware River and in possession of all small boats that might have been used to follow him across, Howe’s advanced forces occupied Trenton, New Jersey.

12 December: Constitution by Congress of regiment of light dragoons and appointment of Elisha Sheldon of Connecticut as its commander mark establishment of Cavalry.

13 December: American General Charles Lee captured at Basking Ridge, New Jersey, after two of his guard were killed and two wounded.

19 December: Opening tract of The Crisis, “these are the times that try men’s souls,” by Thomas Paine, published in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

20 December: Congress, with British so near, adjourned at Philadelphia and on this date met in Baltimore, Maryland.

26 December: General Clinton and Admiral Parker with 6,000 British troops occupied Newport, Rhode Island, providing the British with an important naval base in New England.

26 December: About 2,400 patriot troops under Washington having re-crossed the Delaware River surprised 1,400-man Hessian garrison at Trenton, New Jersey (Trenton Campaign), killing and wounding about 105 and capturing 918, with American losses at most 4 killed and 4 wounded.

27 December: In view of critical situation, Congress in Baltimore resolved to grant General Washington almost dictatorial powers over military affairs for ensuing six months including authority to recruit 22 additional battalions.

29-31 December: After escorting Hessians captured on 26 December across Delaware, Washington returned to New Jersey and reoccupied Trenton.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: War of the American Revolution; BY: Robert W. Coakley & Stetson Conn
CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson

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American Revolution: Major Events 1775

The following is a list of major events for 1775, and the embryo of a new nation.

                                                                       1775

 26 February: British troops went by sea via Marblehead to destroy ordnance gathered by patriots at Salem, Massachusetts. Tense confrontation developed with Salem militia, and first, though slight, bloodshed occurred between British troops and militia prelude to Lexington and Concord.

 23 March: Virginia Convention resolved that colony ought immediately to be put into posture of defense, and Patrick Henry in this connection delivered his “liberty or death” speech.

 15 April: In Boston, 23 flank (light infantry and grenadier) companies of 11 British regiments then composing garrison were detached, ostensibly for separate training.

 18 April: In late evening, British assembled flank companies in Boston for expedition to destroy colonial stores at Concord, and Paul Revere and William Dawes set out with this news to arouse militia and minutemen of towns along and surrounding line of march.

 19 April: In battles of Lexington, Concord, and during British retreat to Boston, about 4,000 patriot minutemen and militia and about I ,800 British troops were engaged, sustaining losses totaling about 95 on patriot side and 270 on British. Lexington and Concord marked transition from agitation to armed rebellion, and patriot propagandist versions of action did much to cement popular sentiment in 13 colonies behind armed rebellion.

 19 April: Secret committee in Charleston, South Carolina, seized mail arriving on British packet ship Swallow disclosing intentions of British Government to coerce colonies into submission. This action gave timely warning to patriots in Carolinas and Georgia, and disclosed to Second Continental Congress first clear evidence of British intentions.

 19 April 1775-17 March 1776: Patriot forces besieged Boston for nearly a year, although officially designated Boston Campaign dates from 17 June rather than 19 April.

 20 April: Massachusetts Committee of Safety, acting on behalf of Provincial Congress, called out entire militia of colony. 

20-21 April: When Virginia Governor Lord Dunmore (John Murray) seized provincial powder supply at Williamsburg, open fighting with patriots was barely averted. 

21 April: Patriots in Charleston, South Carolina, seized all powder from public magazines.

 23 April: Massachusetts Provincial Congress resolved that volunteer New England Army of 30,000 should be raised, to which Massachusetts would contribute 13,600. The other New England Colonies were asked to furnish the rest.

 25 April: People of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, after hearing news of Lexington and Concord, agreed to associate “for the purpose of defending with arms, their lives, their property, and liberty.” I May: People of New York City chose Committee of One Hundred to “stand or fall with the liberty of the continent.”

 10 May: Second Continental Congress met in State House (Independence Hall), in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Delegates from all colonies except Georgia were present.

 10 May: Fort Ticonderoga, New York, guarding portage between Lake Champlain and Lake George on strategic Montreal-New York waterway, was captured by mixed force of Green Mountain Boys and others led by Ethan Allen and Colonel Benedict Arnold (Ticonderoga Campaign). Capture included 50 British soldiers and large quantities of cannon and other ordnance supplies.

 11 May: Patriots in Savannah, Georgia, seized powder from royal magazine.

 12 May: Patriots captured Crown Point, New York, British post on Lake Champlain 10 miles north of Ticonderoga, and its ordnance stores.

 15 May: Acting on request of City and County of New York through colony delegates, Continental Congress appointed committee to determine military posts and number of troops needed to man them in New York, first step toward absorbing New York forces into a Continental army.

 17-18 May: St. Johns, Canada, on Richelieu River east of Montreal, was occupied briefly by Col. Benedict Arnold and on next day by Ethan Allen and Green Mountain Boys.

 25 May: Major Generals John Burgoyne, Henry Clinton, and William Howe arrived in Boston as part of reinforcements for General Gage. By mid-June British had force of 6,500 rank and file in Boston.

 25 May: Acting on committee report, Continental Congress resolved that posts were needed at Kings Bridge, Hudson Highlands, and Lake George in New York, which should be manned by not more than 3,000 men, with action by New York provincial Congress “until further order is taken by this Congress.”

 27 May: Patriot attack on Noddle’s (now East Boston) and Hog Islands in Boston harbor included destruction of British armed schooner Diana. In day of skirmishing four patriots were slightly wounded and two British killed and several wounded.

 31 May: Mecklenburg Resolves (Mecklenburg County, North Carolina) declared British laws null and void.

 31 May: Governor Josiah Martin of North Carolina fled from New Bern first to Fort Johnson on Cape Fear and then on 18 July to British sloop Cruzier in Cape Fear River.

 2 June: Massachusetts requested Continental Congress to take over regulation and direction of New England Army, since it had been raised for general defense of American rights.

 2 June: Provincial Congress of South Carolina avowed citizens of colony “ready to sacrifice their lives and their fortunes” in patriot cause.

 8 June: Flight of Governor of Virginia, Lord Dunmore, to British warship Fowey at Yorktown, marked beginning of open conflict between patriots and loyalists in Virginia.

12 June: At Machias, Maine, patriots seized British armed cutter Margaretta with loss of seven on each side. Captain of British vessel was killed.

 14 June: BIRTHDAY OF UNITED STATES ARMY. On or before this day Continental Congress secretly adopted New England forces besieging Boston and New York forces guarding strategic positions; and openly this day Congress appointed committee to draft regulations for new Continental Army and authorized addition of 10 companies of riflemen to be drawn from Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia. These actions also mark establishment of Infantry on this date.

 15 June: Continental Congress appointed George Washington General and Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army.

 16 June: Congress appointed for Continental Army two major generals, eight brigadier generals, Adjutant General, Quartermaster General and deputy, Commissary General of Stores and Provisions, Commissary of Musters, Paymaster General and deputy, and Chief Engineer and two assistants. These actions mark establishment of Adjutant General’s Corps, Quartermaster Corps, Finance Corps, and Corps of Engineers.

 17 June: Battle of Bunker Hill followed overnight patriot fortification of Breed’s Hill, in front of Bunker, overlooking Charlestown, Massachusetts. In action about 2,000 patriots fought 2,500 British troops, and resulting casualties in killed and wounded were among heaviest of Revolutionary War engagements-the patriots losing 441, including 140 killed, and British 1,150 (40 percent of those engaged), including 251 killed.

 22 June: Congress resolved to issue $2,000,000 in bills of credit first Continental currency.

 25 June: Major General Philip Schuyler named commander of the Northern Department by Washington.

 27 June: Schuyler directed by Congress to proceed to Ticonderoga and Crown Point and if found practicable and “agreeable to the Canadians” to take possession of St. Johns, Montreal, and other parts of Canada.

 30 June: Congress approved rules and regulations for governance of Continental Army.

 3 July: At Cambridge, Massachusetts, General George Washington assumed command of Continental Army forces besieging Boston.

 5 July: Continental Congress adopted “Olive Branch Petition” which, while reiterating grievances of colonists, professed their attachment to the king and desire for reconciliation and avoidance of further hostile action. George III refused to receive this petition, and instead issued his 23 August proclamation declaring colonies to be in state of rebellion. 

6 July: Congress adopted Declaration of the Causes and Necessities of Taking Up Arms, which endorsed further resistance by force rather than unconditional submission to Great Britain, and threatened dissolution of ties with mother country if no just resolution of differences was forthcoming. 

10 July: Georgia sent out first patriot vessel commissioned for naval warfare. 

18 July: Congress recommended that colonies adopt a uniform organization and equipment of militia, that one-fourth of it be segregated into separate minuteman organizations, that each colony appoint committee of safety to direct its defense, and that each provide armed vessels as required to protect its harbors and navigation along its coasts. 

19 July: Congress authorized Washington to appoint Commissary General of Military Stores marking beginning of Ordnance Department. 

20 July: Patriots in surprise raid seized royal stores and their guard at Turtle Bay, Manhattan Island (presently 47th St. at East River), and sent stores to patriot forces at Boston and on Lake Champlain. 

21 July: Patriot forces raided Nantasket Point in Boston harbor, driving off guard and seizing forage, then destroyed equipment on adjacent Light-House (Great Brewster) Island, at harbor entrance, with casualties of two patriots wounded. 

25 July: First of rifle companies authorized by Congress on 14 June, led by Captain Michael Doudel of York County, Pennsylvania, reached Continental force besieging Boston.  

27 July: Action of Congress setting up “hospital” or medical service for army of 20,000 headed by “Director General and Chief Physician” marks establishment of Army Medical Department. 

29 July: Congressional action authorizing $20.00 monthly pay for chaplains then in Continental service, earliest official recognition of chaplaincy in Army, marks establishment of Chaplain’s Corps. 

29 July: Congressional action authorizing $20.00 monthly pay for Army Judge Advocate, and electing William Tudor, Esquire, to this position, marks establishment of Judge Advocate General’s Corps. 

31 July’: Patriots again attacked Great Brewster (Light-House) Island in Boston harbor, destroying repair work and capturing 33-man British marine guard and 10 workmen. Several British and two patriots were wounded. 

8-9 August: British sloop Falcon on 8 August pursued American schooner into harbor of Gloucester, Massachusetts but intense shore fire drove Falcon away without its prizes and with 35 wounded aboard. Patriots seized 26 British sailors (prize crews) as prisoners of war. 

14 August: Patriot ships raided Bermuda, capturing its forts and carrying off all powder in their magazines. 

18 August: New York provincial Congress recommended that the Hudson River Highlands be fortified immediately; appointed commission to supervise construction on Constitution Island (opposite West Point). 

23 August: King George III issued proclamation declaring 13 American colonies to be in state of rebellion and sedition and directing suppression of American resistance. 

28 August: Patriot invasion of Canada from Lake Champlain began from Ticonderoga under leadership of Generals Philip Schuyler and Richard Montgomery. 

30 August: British naval bombardment of Stonington, Connecticut, killed two and destroyed a number of houses. 

5 September: Advanced detachment of General Schuyler’s patriot force was ambushed near St. Johns, Canada, by Indian force led by New York loyalist. Patriots drove Indians off in bush fight but not before losing eight killed and eight wounded. 

11 September: Colonel Benedict Arnold’s march to Quebec began. Departing Cambridge, Massachusetts, this date, 1,150 men traveled mostly by water to and up Kennebec River in Maine, then by portages across height of land to Chaudière River and thence to St. Lawrence River opposite. Quebec. Only 600 reached this destination on 9 November after one of the most remarkable military marches in history.

 15 September: Lord William Campbell, Royal Governor of South Carolina, took refuge on British sloop Tamar. 

16 September-2 November: Patriot troops under General Montgomery besieged St. Johns, Canada, key to defense of Montreal. 

25 September: Leading impulsive and premature attack on Montreal, Canada, Ethan Allen and about 40 of his men were captured after some brisk skirmishing. Eventually (1778) exchanged, Allen became Continental Army colonel but spent remainder of war in Vermont. 

7 October: Small British fleet operating out of Newport bombarded Bristol, Rhode Island, until its inhabitants provided 40 sheep for British Army consumption. This was only first of series of marauding attacks on islands and shores of Narragansett Bay that led to virtual extinction of loyalist support in area. 

10 October: General William Howe replaced General Gage as Commander of British Army forces in Boston, and formally succeeded Gage as Commander-in-Chief of British Army forces in the United Colonies in April 1776. 

13 October: BIRTHDAY OF UNITED STATES NAVY. Congress this day directed fitting out of two vessels to intercept ships carrying warlike stores and other supplies to British forces, and appointed a “Marine Committee” to administer this action. 

18 October: Governor William Tryon of New York took refuge on British warship Halifax in New York harbor. 

18 October: Two British warships bombarded and burned West Falmouth (now Portland), Maine, destroying 400 of its 500 buildings and burning or capturing 15 ships. 

19 October: During siege of St. Johns, Canadian-American patriot force with some 9-pounders attacked thin-walled fortress at Chambly, Canada, and forced surrender of its 88 British regulars and other inhabitants and seized quantities of powder and ordnance supplies. This action cut water escape from St. Johns and expedited its surrender. 

24-25 October: Lord Dunmore sent British naval captain and several small ships to bombard and destroy Hampton, Virginia. Militia riflemen drove off landing party on first day of bombardment, and with addition of another rifle company repelled second day’s attack with heavy loss to British in men and ships. 

30 October: Congress authorized construction of four armed vessels “for the protection and defense of the United Colonies“-thus providing first ships of Continental Navy. 

2 November: British post of St. Johns, Canada, and its garrison of about 600 regulars and militia, surrendered. While this action opened way to capture of Montreal, British “forward” defense at St. Johns and Chambly forced patriots into costly and unsuccessful winter campaign and may have saved Canada for British. 

4 November: Congress approved reorganization of Continental Army before Boston, effective with new year; reorganized force was to consist of 20,372 officers and men to be enlisted through calendar year 1776; Congress also established a uniform ration for the Army. 

7 November: Lord Dunmore, Virginia Governor, ordered colony placed under martial law. 

9 November: Colonel Arnold’s force of 600 arrived at St. Lawrence River opposite Quebec, Canada.

 10 November: BIRTHDAY OF UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS. Although colonies and Continental Army had employed marines since spring of this year, action of Congress on this day directing that two marine battalions be raised and appropriately officered is counted as beginning of Marine Corps. These battalions were to be part of Continental Army establishment under Washington’s command.

 13 November: General Montgomery’s troops occupied· Montreal, Canada, after small British force under General and Governor Sir Guy Carleton withdrew on II November. 

17 November: Appointment of Colonel Henry Knox to command of Continental Regiment of Artillery marks formal establishment of Artillery.

19 November: Patriot forces blocking St. Lawrence River near Sorel, Canada, captured three British armed vessels and eight smaller craft with their crews and cargoes, and also British Montreal garrison except General Carleton who escaped in disguise with one or two of his officers. 

19 November: Arnold, after laying siege to Quebec, withdrew forces to Point aux Trembles in face of threatened British sortie with superior force. 

22 November: Patriot force of more than 4,000 overawed smaller loyalist force at Reedy River, South Carolina (south of modern Greenville), leading to capture of principal loyalist leaders and collapse of armed loyalist opposition in South Carolina almost without bloodshed. 

27 November: Captain John Manley, commissioned by General Washington in Continental Army and master of armed schooner Lee) captured British ordnance brig Nancy at entrance of Boston harbor with cargo of tremendous value to patriot force besieging Boston-most notable of a number of captures by Washington’s “Navy” in fall and winter of 1775-1776. 

29 November: Congress appointed 5-man Secret Committee of Correspondence to develop foreign ties and support-embryo of Department of State. 

2 December: First of General Montgomery’s troops joined Arnold’s at Point aux Trembles and combined patriot force of 800 effectives began siege of Quebec, a well-fortified city defended by 1,800 British regulars and British and French-Canadian militia. 

9 December: Lord Dunmore sent force of 400 or so, half British regulars, to intercept patriot force advancing on Norfolk, Virginia. In rashly attacking instead of defending crossing at Great Bridge, Virginia, British forces suffered 62 casualties as against one patriot slightly wounded, and were completely routed in this first military action of war in Virginia. 

10 December: Connecticut men in Washington’s Army, enlisted only until this date, departed for home, emphasizing Washington’s problem in enlisting an adequate army. 

13 December: After action at Great Bridge, Norfolk, Virginia, was occupied by patriots. 

13 December: Congress authorized construction of thirteen ships five 32’s, five 28’s, and three 24’s–for Continental Navy. 

22 December: Parliament passed Prohibitory Act, interdicting foreign trade and intercourse with thirteen revolting colonies. 

31 December: With enlistments expiring, Montgomery and Arnold led 800 patriots in desperate and unsuccessful attack on Quebec, Canada (Quebec Campaign), during blinding snowstorm in early morning hours of New Year. Montgomery was killed and Arnold wounded among 60 patriots killed and wounded and 426 captured. British lost 5 killed and 13 wounded.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: War of the American Revolution BY: Robert W. Coakley & Steton Conn (United States Army Center of Military History)
CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson

World War I Medal of Honor Recipients (Army)

Note: An asterisk in the citation indicates that the award was given posthumously.

ADKINSON, JOSEPH B.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company C, 119th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Bellicourt, France, 29 September 1918
Citation: When murderous machinegun fire at a range of 50 yards had made it impossible for his platoon to advance, and had caused the platoon to take cover Sgt. Adkinson alone, with the greatest intrepidity, rushed across the 50 yards of open ground directly into the face of the hostile machinegun kicked the gun from the parapet into the enemy trench, and at the point of the bayonet captured the 3 men manning the gun. The gallantry and quick decision of this soldier enabled the platoon to resume its advance.

ALLEX, JAKE
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company H, 131st Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: At Chipilly Ridge, France, 9 August 1918
Citation: At a critical point in the action, when all the officers with his platoon had become casualties, Cpl. Allex took command of the platoon and led it forward until the advance was stopped by fire from a machinegun nest. He then advanced alone for about 30 yards in the face of intense fire and attacked the nest. With his bayonet he killed 5 of the enemy, and when it was broken, used the butt of his rifle, capturing 15 prisoners.

ALLWORTH, EDWARD C.
• Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 60th Infantry, 5th Division
• Place and date: At Clery-le-Petit, France, 5 November 1918
Citation: While his company was crossing the Meuse River and canal at a bridgehead opposite Clery-le-Petit, the bridge over the canal was destroyed by shell fire and Capt. Allworth’s command became separated, part of it being on the east bank of the canal and the remainder on the west bank. Seeing his advance units making slow headway up the steep slope ahead, this officer mounted the canal bank and called for his men to follow. Plunging in he swam across the canal under fire from the enemy, followed by his men. Inspiring his men by his example of gallantry, he led them up the slope, joining his hard-pressed platoons in front. By his personal leadership he forced the enemy back for more than a kilometer, overcoming machinegun nests and capturing 100 prisoners, whose number exceeded that of the men in his command. The exceptional courage and leadership displayed by Capt. Allworth made possible the re-establishment of a bridgehead over the canal and the successful advance of other troops.

ANDERSON, JOHANNES S.
• Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company B, 132d Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: At Consenvoye, France, 8 October 1918
Citation: While his company was being held up by intense artillery and machinegun fire, 1st Sgt. Anderson, without aid, voluntarily left the company and worked his way to the rear of the nest that was offering the most stubborn resistance. His advance was made through an open area and under constant hostile fire, but the mission was successfully accomplished, and he not only silenced the gun and captured it, but also brought back with him 23 prisoners.

*BAESEL, ALBERT E.
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 148th Infantry, 37th Division
• Place and date: Near Ivoiry, France, 27 September 1918
Citation: Upon hearing that a squad leader of his platoon had been severely wounded while attempting to capture an enemy machinegun nest about 200 yards in advance of the assault line and somewhat to the right, 2d Lt. Baesel requested permission to go to the rescue of the wounded corporal. After thrice repeating his request and permission having been reluctantly given, due to the heavy artillery, rifle, and machinegun fire, and heavy deluge of gas in which the company was at the time, accompanied by a volunteer, he worked his way forward, and reaching the wounded man, placed him upon his shoulders and was instantly killed by enemy fire.

BALCH, JOHN HENRY
• Rank and organization: Pharmacist’s Mate First Class, U.S. Navy
• Place and date: Vierzy, France, and Somme-Py, France, 19 July and 5 October 1918
Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty, with the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in action at Vierzy, on 19 July 1918. Balch unhesitatingly and fearlessly exposed himself to terrific machinegun and high-explosive fire to succor the wounded as they fell in the attack, leaving his dressing station voluntarily and keeping up the work all day and late into the night unceasingly for 16 hours. Also in the action at Somme-Py on 5 October 1918, he exhibited exceptional bravery in establishing an advanced dressing station under heavy shellfire.

BARGER, CHARLES D.
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company L, 354th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Bois-deBantheville, France, 31 October 1918
Citation: Learning that 2 daylight patrols had been caught out in No Man’s Land and were unable to return, Pfc. Barger and another stretcher bearer upon their own initiative made 2 trips 500 yards beyond our lines, under constant machinegun fire, and rescued 2 wounded officers.

*BARKELEY, DAVID B.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company A, 356th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Pouilly, France, 9 November 1918
Citation: When information was desired as to the enemy’s position on the opposite side of the Meuse River, Pvt. Barkeley, with another soldier, volunteered without hesitation and swam the river to reconnoiter the exact location. He succeeded in reaching the opposite bank, despite the evident determination of the enemy to prevent a crossing. Having obtained his information, he again entered the water for his return, but before his goal was reached, he was seized with cramps and drowned.

BARKLEY, JOHN L.
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company K, 4th Infantry, 3d Division
• Place and date: Near Cunel, France, 7 October 1918
Citation: Pfc. Barkley, who was stationed in an observation post half a kilometer from the German line, on his own initiative repaired a captured enemy machinegun and mounted it in a disabled French tank near his post. Shortly afterward, when the enemy launched a counterattack against our forces, Pfc. Barkley got into the tank, waited under the hostile barrage until the enemy line was abreast of him and then opened fire, completely breaking up the counterattack and killing and wounding a large number of the enemy. Five minutes later an enemy 77-millimeter gun opened fire on the tank pointblank. One shell struck the drive wheel of the tank, but this soldier nevertheless remained in the tank and after the barrage ceased broke up a second enemy counterattack, thereby enabling our forces to gain and hold Hill 25.

BART, FRANK J.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company C, 9th Infantry, 2d Division
• Place and date: Near Medeah Ferme, France, 3 October 1918
Citation: Pvt. Bart, being on duty as a company runner, when the advance was held up by machinegun fire voluntarily picked up an automatic rifle, ran out ahead of the line, and silenced a hostile machinegun nest, killing the German gunners. The advance then continued, and when it was again hindered shortly afterward by another machinegun nest this courageous soldier repeated his bold exploit by putting the second machinegun out of action.

*BLACKWELL, ROBERT L.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company K, 119th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near St. Souplet, France, 11 October 1918
Citation: When his platoon was almost surrounded by the enemy and his platoon commander asked for volunteers to carry a message calling for reinforcements, Pvt. Blackwell volunteered for this mission, well knowing the extreme danger connected with it. In attempting to get through the heavy shell and machinegun fire this gallant soldier was killed.

*BLECKLEY, ERWIN R.
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Corps, 130th Field Artillery, observer 50th Aero Squadron, Air Service
• Place and date. Near Binarville, France, 6 October 1918 (Air Mission)
Citation: 2d Lt. Bleckley, with his pilot, 1st Lt. Harold E. Goettler, Air Service, left the airdrome late in the afternoon on their second trip to drop supplies to a battalion of the 77th Division, which had been cut off by the enemy in the Argonne Forest. Having been subjected on the first trip to violent fire from the enemy, they attempted on the second trip to come still lower in order to get the packages even more precisely on the designated spot. In the course of his mission the plane was brought down by enemy rifle and machinegun fire from the ground, resulting in fatal wounds to 2d Lt. Bleckley, who died before he could be taken to a hospital. In attempting and performing this mission 2d Lt. Bleckley showed the highest possible contempt of personal danger, devotion to duty, courage, and valor.

BOONE, JOEL THOMPSON
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant (Medical Corps), U.S. Navy
• Place and date: Vicinity Vierzy, France, 19 July 1918
Citation: For extraordinary heroism, conspicuous gallantry, and intrepidity while serving with the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in actual conflict with the enemy. With absolute disregard for personal safety, ever conscious and mindful of the suffering fallen, Surg. Boone, leaving the shelter of a ravine, went forward onto the open field where there was no protection and despite the extreme enemy fire of all calibers, through a heavy mist of gas, applied dressings and first aid to wounded marines. This occurred southeast of Vierzy, near the cemetery, and on the road south from that town. When the dressings and supplies had been exhausted, he went through a heavy barrage of large-caliber shells, both high explosive and gas, to replenish these supplies, returning quickly with a sidecar load, and administered them in saving the lives of the wounded. A second trip, under the same conditions and for the same purpose, was made by Surg. Boone later that day.

BRADLEY, WILLIS WINTER, JR.
• Rank and organization: Commander, U.S. Navy
• Appointed from: North Dakota
Citation: For extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty while serving on the U.S.S. Pittsburgh, at the time of an accidental explosion of ammunition on that vessel. On 23 July 1917, some saluting cartridge cases were being reloaded in the after casemate: through an accident an explosion occurred. Comdr. Bradley (then Lieutenant), who was about to enter the casemate, was blown back by the explosion and rendered momentarily unconscious, but while still dazed, crawled into the casemate to extinguish burning materials in dangerous proximity to a considerable amount of powder, thus preventing further explosions.

BRONSON, DEMING
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, Company H, 364th Infantry, 91st Division
• Place and date: Near Eclisfontaine, France, 26-27 September 1918
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy. On the morning of 26 September, during the advance of the 364th Infantry, 1st Lt. Bronson was struck by an exploding enemy hand-grenade, receiving deep cuts on his face and the back of his head. He nevertheless participated in the action which resulted in the capture of an enemy dugout from which a great number of prisoners were taken. This was effected with difficulty and under extremely hazardous conditions because it was necessary to advance without the advantage of cover and, from an exposed position, throw hand-grenades and phosphorous bombs to compel the enemy to surrender. On the afternoon of the same day he was painfully wounded in the left arm by an enemy rifle bullet, and after receiving first aid treatment he was directed to the rear. Disregarding these instructions, 1st Lt. Bronson remained on duty with his company through the night although suffering from severe pain and shock. On the morning of 27 September, his regiment resumed its attack, the object being the village of Eclisfontaine. Company H, to which 1st Lt. Bronson was assigned, was left in support of the attacking line, Company E being in the line. He gallantly joined that company in spite of his wounds and engaged with it in the capture of the village. After the capture he remained with Company E and participated with it in the capture of an enemy machinegun, he himself killing the enemy gunner. Shortly after this encounter the company was compelled to retire due to the heavy enemy artillery barrage. During this retirement 1st Lt. Bronson, who was the last man to leave the advanced position, was again wounded in both arms by an enemy high-explosive shell. He was then assisted to cover by another officer who applied first aid. Although bleeding profusely and faint from the loss of blood, 1st Lt. Bronson remained with the survivors of the company throughout the night of the second day, refusing to go to the rear for treatment. His conspicuous gallantry and spirit of self-sacrifice were a source of great inspiration to the members of the entire command.

CALL, DONALD M.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, 344th Battalion, Tank Corps
• Place and date: Near Varennes, France, 26 September 1918
Citation: During an operation against enemy machinegun nests west of Varennes, Cpl. Call was in a tank with an officer when half of the turret was knocked off by a direct artillery hit. Choked by gas from the high-explosive shell, he left the tank and took cover in a shell hole 30 yards away. Seeing that the officer did not follow, and thinking that he might be alive, Cpl. Call returned to the tank under intense machinegun and shell fire and carried the officer over a mile under machinegun and sniper fire to safety.

CANN, TEDFORD H.
• Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: New York
Citation: For courageous conduct while serving on board the U.S.S. May, 5 November 1917. Cann found a leak in a flooded compartment and closed it at the peril of his life, thereby unquestionably saving the ship.

*CHILES, MARCELLUS H.
• Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 356th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Le Champy Bas, France, 3 November 1918
Citation: When his battalion, of which he had just taken command, was halted by machinegun fire from the front and left flank, he picked up the rifle of a dead soldier and, calling on his men to follow led the advance across a stream, waist deep, in the face of the machinegun fire. Upon reaching the opposite bank this gallant officer was seriously wounded in the abdomen by a sniper, but before permitting himself to be evacuated he made complete arrangements for turning over his command to the next senior officer, and under the inspiration of his fearless leadership his battalion reached its objective. Capt. Chiles died shortly after reaching the hospital.

*COLYER, WILBUR E.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company A, 1st Engineers, 1st Division
• Place and date: Near Verdun, France, 9 October 1918
Citation: Volunteering with 2 other soldiers to locate machinegun nests, Sgt. Colyer advanced on the hostile positions to a point where he was half surrounded by the nests, which were in ambush. He killed the gunner of one gun with a captured German grenade and then turned this gun on the other nests silencing all of them before he returned to his platoon. He was later killed in action.

*COSTIN, HENRY G.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company H, 115th Infantry, 29th Division
• Place and date: Near Bois-de-Consenvoye, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Baltimore, Md.
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D., 1919
Citation: When the advance of his platoon had been held up by machinegun fire and a request was made for an automatic rifle team to charge the nest, Pvt. Costin was the first to volunteer. Advancing with his team, under terrific fire of enemy artillery, machineguns, and trench mortars, he continued after all his comrades had become casualties and he himself had been seriously wounded. He operated his rifle until he collapsed. His act resulted in the capture of about 100 prisoners and several machineguns. He succumbed from the effects of his wounds shortly after the accomplishment of his heroic deed.

COVINGTON, JESSE WHITFIELD
• Rank and organization: Ship’s Cook Third Class, U.S. Navy
• Place and date: At sea aboard the U.S.S. Stewart, 17 April 1918
Citation: For extraordinary heroism following internal explosion of the Florence H. The sea in the vicinity of wreckage was covered by a mass of boxes of smokeless powder, which were repeatedly exploding. Jesse W. Covington, of the U.S.S. Stewart, plunged overboard to rescue a survivor who was surrounded by powder boxes and too exhausted to help himself, fully realizing that similar powder boxes in the vicinity were continually exploding and that he was thereby risking his life in saving the life of this man.

CUKELA, LOUIS
Army Medal
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, 66th Company, 5th Regiment
• Place and date: Near Villers-Cotterets, France, 18 July 1918
Citation (Army Medal): When his company, advancing through a wood, met with strong resistance from an enemy strong point, Sgt. Cukela crawled out from the flank and made his way toward the German lines in the face of heavy fire, disregarding the warnings of his comrades. He succeeded in getting behind the enemy position and rushed a machinegun emplacement, killing or driving off the crew with his bayonet. With German hand grenades he then bombed out the remaining portion of the strong point, capturing 4 men and 2 damaged machineguns.
Navy Medal
Citation (Navy Medal): For extraordinary heroism while serving with the 66th Company, 5th Regiment, during action in the Forest de Retz, near Viller-Cottertes, France, 18 July 1918. Sgt. Cukela advanced alone against an enemy strong point that was holding up his line. Disregarding the warnings of his comrades, he crawled out from the flank in the face of heavy fire and worked his way to the rear of the enemy position. Rushing a machinegun emplacement, he killed or drove off the crew with his bayonet, bombed out the remaining part of the strong point with German handgrenades and captured 2 machineguns and 4 men.

*DILBOY, GEORGE
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company H, 103d Infantry, 26th Division
• Place and date: Near Belleau, France, 18 July 1918
Citation: After his platoon had gained its objective along a railroad embankment, Pfc. Dilboy, accompanying his platoon leader to reconnoiter the ground beyond, was suddenly fired upon by an enemy machinegun from 100 yards. From a standing position on the railroad track, fully exposed to view, he opened fire at once, but failing to silence the gun, rushed forward with his bayonet fixed, through a wheat field toward the gun emplacement, falling within 25 yards of the gun with his right leg nearly severed above the knee and with several bullet holes in his body. With undaunted courage he continued to fire into the emplacement from a prone position, killing 2 of the enemy and dispersing the rest of the crew.

DONALDSON, MICHAEL A.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company I, 165th Infantry, 42d Division
• Place and date: At Sommerance-Landres-et St. Georges Road, France, 14 October 1918
Citation: The advance of his regiment having been checked by intense machinegun fire of the enemy, who were entrenched on the crest of a hill before Landres-et St. Georges, his company retired to a sunken road to reorganize their position, leaving several of their number wounded near the enemy lines. Of his own volition, in broad daylight and under direct observation of the enemy and with utter disregard for his own safety, he advanced to the crest of the hill, rescued one of his wounded comrades, and returned under withering fire to his own lines, repeating his splendidly heroic act until he had brought in all the men, 6 in number.

DONOVAN, WILLIAM JOSEPH
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army, 165th Infantry, 42d Division
• Place and date: Near Landres-et-St. Georges, France, 14-15 October 1918
Citation: Lt. Col. Donovan personally led the assaulting wave in an attack upon a very strongly organized position, and when our troops were suffering heavy casualties he encouraged all near him by his example, moving among his men in exposed positions, reorganizing decimated platoons, and accompanying them forward in attacks. When he was wounded in the leg by machine-gun bullets, he refused to be evacuated and continued with his unit until it withdrew to a less exposed position.

DOZIER, JAMES C.
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, Company G, 118th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Montbrehain, France, 8 October 1918
Citation: In command of 2 platoons, 1st. Lt. Dozier was painfully wounded in the shoulder early in the attack, but he continued to lead his men displaying the highest bravery and skill. When his command was held up by heavy machinegun fire, he disposed his men in the best cover available and with a soldier continued forward to attack a machinegun nest. Creeping up to the position in the face of intense fire, he killed the entire crew with handgrenades and his pistol and a little later captured a number of Germans who had taken refuge in a dugout nearby.

*DUNN, PARKER F.
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company A, 312th Infantry, 78th Division
• Place and date: Near Grand-Pre, France, 23 October 1918
Citation: When his battalion commander found it necessary to send a message to a company in the attacking line and hesitated to order a runner to make the trip because of the extreme danger involved, Pfc. Dunn, a member of the intelligence section, volunteered for the mission. After advancing but a short distance across a field swept by artillery and machinegun fire, he was wounded, but continued on and fell wounded a second time. Still undaunted, he persistently attempted to carry out his mission until he was killed by a machinegun bullet before reaching the advance line.

EDWARDS, DANIEL R.
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company C, 3d Machine Gun Battalion, 1st Division
• Place and date: Near Soissons, France, 18 July 1918
Citation: Reporting for duty from hospital where he had been for several weeks under treatment for numerous and serious wounds and although suffering intense pain from a shattered arm, he crawled alone into an enemy trench for the purpose of capturing or killing enemy soldiers known to be concealed therein. He killed 4 of the men and took the remaining 4 men prisoners; while conducting them to the rear one of the enemy was killed by a high explosive enemy shell which also completely shattered 1 of Pfc. Edwards’ legs, causing him to be immediately evacuated to the hospital. The bravery of Pfc. Edwards, now a tradition in his battalion because of his previous gallant acts, again caused the morale of his comrades to be raised to high pitch.

EGGERS, ALAN LOUIS
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division
• Place and date: Near Le Catelet, France, 29 September 1918
Citation: Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Sgt. Eggers, Sgt. John C. Latham and Cpl. Thomas E. O’Shea took cover in a shell hole well within the enemy’s lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank, which had become disabled 30 yards from them, the 3 soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank, under heavy fire from German machineguns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area Cpl. O’Shea was mortally wounded, but his companions, undeterred, proceeded to the tank, rescued a wounded officer, and assisted 2 wounded soldiers to cover in a sap of a nearby trench. Sgt. Eggers and Sgt. Latham then returned to the tank in the face of the violent fire, dismounted a Hotchkiss gun, and took it back to where the wounded men were, keeping off the enemy all day by effective use of the gun and later bringing it, with the wounded men, back to our lines under cover of darkness.

ELLIS, MICHAEL B.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company C, 28th Infantry, 1st Division
• Place and date: Near Exermont, France, 5 October 1918
Citation: During the entire day’s engagement he operated far in advance of the first wave of his company, voluntarily undertaking most dangerous missions and single-handedly attacking and reducing machinegun nests. Flanking one emplacement, he killed 2 of the enemy with rifle fire and captured 17 others. Later he single-handedly advanced under heavy fire and captured 27 prisoners, including 2 officers and 6 machineguns, which had been holding up the advance of the company. The captured officers indicated the locations of 4 other machineguns, and he in turn captured these, together with their crews, at all times showing marked heroism and fearlessness.

FORREST, ARTHUR J.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company D, 354th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Remonville, France, 1 November 1918
Citation: When the advance of his company was stopped by bursts of fire from a nest of 6 enemy machineguns, without being discovered, he worked his way single-handed to a point within 50 yards of the machinegun nest. Charging, single-handed, he drove out the enemy in disorder, thereby protecting the advance platoon from annihilating fire, and permitting the resumption of the advance of his company.

FOSTER, GARY EVANS
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company F, 118th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Montbrehain, France, 8 October 1918
Citation: When his company was held up by violent machinegun fire from a sunken road, Sgt. Foster with an officer went forward to attack the hostile machinegun nests. The officer was wounded, but Sgt. Foster continued on alone in the face of the heavy fire and by effective use of hand grenades and his pistol killed several of the enemy and captured 18.

FUNK, JESSE N.
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company L, 354th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Bois-deBantheville, France, 31 October 1918
Citation: Learning that 2 daylight patrols had been caught out in No Man’s Land and were unable to return, Pfc. Funk and another stretcher bearer, upon their own initiative, made 2 trips 500 yards beyond our lines, under constant machinegun fire, and rescued 2 wounded officers.

FURLONG, HAROLD A.
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 353d Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Bantheville, France, 1 November 1918
Citation: Immediately after the opening of the attack in the Bois-de-Bantheville, when his company was held up by severe machinegun fire from the front, which killed his company commander and several soldiers, 1st. Lt. Furlong moved out in advance of the line with great courage and coolness, crossing an open space several hundred yards wide. Taking up a position behind the line of the machineguns, he closed in on them, one at a time, killing a number of the enemy with his rifle, putting 4 machinegun nests out of action, and driving 20 German prisoners into our lines.

GAFFNEY, FRANK
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company G, 108th Infantry, 27th Division
• Place and date: Near Ronssoy, France, 29 September 1918
Citation: Pfc. Gaffney, an automatic rifleman, pushing forward alone, after all the other members of his squad had been killed, discovered several Germans placing a heavy machinegun in position. He killed the crew, captured the gun, bombed several dugouts, and, after killing 4 more of the enemy with his pistol, held the position until reinforcements came up, when 80 prisoners were captured.

*GOETTLER, HAROLD ERNEST
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, pilot, U.S. Army Air Corps, 50th Aero Squadron, Air Service
• Place and date: Near Binarville, France, 6 October 1918 (Air Mission)
Citation: 1st. Lt. Goettler, with his observer, 2d Lt. Erwin R. Bleckley, 130th Field Artillery, left the airdrome late in the afternoon on their second trip to drop supplies to a battalion of the 77th Division which had been cut off by the enemy in the Argonne Forest. Having been subjected on the first trip to violent fire from the enemy, they attempted on the second trip to come still lower in order to get the packages even more precisely on the designated spot. In the course of this mission the plane was brought down by enemy rifle and machinegun fire from the ground, resulting in the instant death of 1st. Lt. Goettler. In attempting and performing this mission 1st. Lt. Goettler showed the highest possible contempt of personal danger, devotion to duty, courage and valor.

GRAVES, ORA
• Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: Nebraska
Citation: For extraordinary heroism on 23 July 1917, while the U.S.S. Pittsburgh was proceeding to Buenos Aires, Argentina. A 3-inch saluting charge exploded, causing the death of C. T. Lyles, seaman. Upon the explosion, Graves was blown to the deck, but soon recovered and discovered burning waste on the deck. He put out the burning waste while the casemate was filled with clouds of smoke, knowing that there was more powder there which might explode.

GREGORY, EARL D.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Headquarters Company, 116th Infantry, 29th Division
• Place and date: At Bois-de-Consenvoye, north of Verdun, France, 8 October 1918
Citation: With the remark “I will get them,” Sgt. Gregory seized a rifle and a trench-mortar shell, which he used as a handgrenade, left his detachment of the trench-mortar platoon, and advancing ahead of the infantry, captured a machinegun and 3 of the enemy. Advancing still farther from the machinegun nest, he captured a 7.5-centimeter mountain howitzer and, entering a dugout in the immediate vicinity, single-handedly captured 19 of the enemy.

GUMPERTZ, SYDNEY G.
• Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company E, 132d Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: In the Bois-de-Forges, France, 29 September 1918
Citation: When the advancing line was held up by machinegun fire, 1st Sgt. Gumpertz left the platoon of which he was in command and started with 2 other soldiers through a heavy barrage toward the machinegun nest. His 2 companions soon became casualties from bursting shells, but 1st Sgt. Gumpertz continued on alone in the face of direct fire from the machinegun, jumped into the nest and silenced the gun, capturing 9 of the crew.

*HALL, THOMAS LEE
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company G, 118th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date. Near Montbrehain, France, 8 October 1918
Citation: Having overcome 2 machinegun nests under his skillful leadership, Sgt. Hall’s platoon was stopped 800 yards from its final objective by machinegun fire of particular intensity. Ordering his men to take cover in a sunken road, he advanced alone on the enemy machinegun post and killed 5 members of the crew with his bayonet and thereby made possible the further advance of the line. While attacking another machinegun nest later in the day this gallant soldier was mortally wounded.

HAMMANN, CHARLES HAZELTINE
• Rank and organization: Ensign, U.S. Naval Reserve Fleet
• Appointed from: Maryland
Citation: For extraordinary heroism as a pilot of a seaplane on 21 August 1918, when with 3 other planes Ens. Hammann took part in a patrol and attacked a superior force of enemy land planes. In the course of the engagement which followed the plane of Ens. George M. Ludlow was shot down and fell in the water 5 miles off Pola. Ens. Hammann immediately dived down and landed on the water close alongside the disabled machine, where he took Ludlow on board. Although his machine was not designed for the double load to which it was subjected, and although there was danger of attack by Austrian planes, he made his way to Porto Corsini.

HATLER, M. WALDO
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company B, 356th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Pouilly, France, 8 November 1918
Citation: When volunteers were called for to secure information as to the enemy’s position on the opposite bank of the Meuse River, Sgt. Hatler was the first to offer his services for this dangerous mission. Swimming across the river, he succeeded in reaching the German lines, after another soldier, who had started with him, had been seized with cramps and drowned in midstream. Alone he carefully and courageously reconnoitered the enemy’s positions, which were held in force, and again successfully swam the river, bringing back information of great value.

HAYDEN, DAVID E.
• Rank and organization: Hospital Apprentice First Class, U.S. Navy, serving with the 2d Battalion, 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines
• Place and date: Thiaucourt, France, 15 September 1918
Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. During the advance, when Cpl. Creed was mortally wounded while crossing an open field swept by machinegun fire, Hayden unhesitatingly ran to his assistance and, finding him so severely wounded as to require immediate attention, disregarded his own personal safety to dress the wound under intense machinegun fire, and then carried the wounded man back to a place of safety.

HAYS, GEORGE PRICE
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army 10th Field Artillery, 3d Division
• Place and date: Near Greves Farm, France, 14-15 July 1918
Citation: At the very outset of the unprecedented artillery bombardment by the enemy, his line of communication was destroyed beyond repair. Despite the hazard attached to the mission of runner, he immediately set out to establish contact with the neighboring post of command and further establish liaison with 2 French batteries, visiting their position so frequently that he was mainly responsible for the accurate fire therefrom. While thus engaged, 7 horses were shot under him and he was severely wounded. His activity under most severe fire was an important factor in checking the advance of the enemy.

*HERIOT, JAMES D.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company I, 118th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: At Vaux-Andigny, France, 12 October 1918
Citation: Cpl. Heriot, with 4 other soldiers, organized a combat group and attacked an enemy machine-gun nest which had been inflicting heavy casualties on his company. In the advance 2 of his men were killed, and because of the heavy fire from all sides the remaining 2 sought shelter. Unmindful of the hazard attached to his mission, Cpl. Heriot, with fixed bayonet, alone charged the machinegun, making his way through the fire for a distance of 30 yards and forcing the enemy to surrender. During this exploit he received several wounds in the arm, and later in the same day, while charging another nest, he was killed.

HILL, RALYN M.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company H, 129th Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: Near Donnevoux, France, 7 October 1918
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D., 1919
Citation: Seeing a French airplane fall out of control on the enemy side of the Meuse River with its pilot injured, Cpl. Hill voluntarily dashed across the footbridge to the side of the wounded man and, taking him on his back, started back to his lines. During the entire exploit he was subjected to murderous fire of enemy machineguns and artillery, but he successfully accomplished his mission and brought his man to a place of safety, a distance of several hundred yards.

HILTON, RICHMOND H.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company M, 118th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: At Brancourt, France, 11 October 1918
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: While Sgt. Hilton’s company was advancing through the village of Brancourt it was held up by intense enfilading fire from a machinegun. Discovering that this fire came from a machinegun nest among shell holes at the edge of the town, Sgt. Hilton, accompanied by a few other soldiers, but well in advance of them, pressed on toward this position, firing with his rifle until his ammunition was exhausted, and then with his pistol, killing 6 of the enemy and capturing 10. In the course of this daring exploit he received a wound from a bursting shell, which resulted in the loss of his arm.

HOFFMAN, CHARLES F. (Army Medal)
• Rank and organization: Gunnery Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, 49th Company, 5th Regiment, 2d Division, (Name changed to Ernest August Janson, see p. 444.)
• Place and date: Near Chateau-Thierry, France, 6 June 1918
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D., 1919
• Also received Navy Medal of Honor
Citation: Immediately after the company to which he belonged had reached its objective on Hill 142, several hostile counterattacks were launched against the line before the new position had been consolidated. G/Sgt. Hoffman was attempting to organize a position on the north slope of the hill when he saw 12 of the enemy, armed with 5 light machineguns, crawling toward his group. Giving the alarm, he rushed the hostile detachment, bayoneted the 2 leaders, and forced the others to flee, abandoning their guns. His quick action, initiative, and courage drove the enemy from a position from which they could have swept the hill with machinegun fire and forced the withdrawal of our troops.

HOLDERMAN, NELSON M.
• Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 307th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: Northeast of Binarville, in the forest of Argonne, France, 2-8 October 1918
• G.O. No.: 11, W.D., 1921
Citation: Capt. Holderman commanded a company of a battalion which was cut off and surrounded by the enemy. He was wounded on 4, 5, and 7 October, but throughout the entire period, suffering great pain and subjected to fire of every character, he continued personally to lead and encourage the officers and men under his command with unflinching courage and with distinguished success. On 6 October, in a wounded condition, he rushed through enemy machinegun and shell fire and carried 2 wounded men to a place of safety.

*INGRAM, OSMOND K.
• Rank and organization: Gunner’s Mate First Class, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to. Alabama
Citation: For extraordinary heroism in the presence of the enemy on the occasion of the torpedoing of the Cassin, on 15 October 1917. While the Cassin was searching for the submarine, Ingram sighted the torpedo coming, and realizing that it might strike the ship aft in the vicinity of the depth charges, ran aft with the intention of releasing the depth charges before the torpedo could reach the Cassin. The torpedo struck the ship before he could accomplish his purpose and Ingram was killed by the explosion. The depth charges exploded immediately afterward. His life was sacrificed in an attempt to save the ship and his shipmates, as the damage to the ship would have been much less if he had been able to release the depth charges.

IZAC, EDOUARD VICTOR MICHEL
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant, U.S. Navy
• Place and date: Aboard German submarine U-90 as prisoner of war, 21 May 1918
• Entered service at: Illinois
Citation: When the U.S.S. President Lincoln was attacked and sunk by the German submarine U-90, on 21 May 1918, Lt. Izac was captured and held as a prisoner on board the U-90 until the return of the submarine to Germany, when he was confined in the prison camp. During his stay on the U-90 he obtained information of the movements of German submarines which was so important that he determined to escape, with a view to making this information available to the U.S. and Allied Naval authorities. In attempting to carry out this plan, he jumped through the window of a rapidly moving train at the imminent risk of death, not only from the nature of the act itself but from the fire of the armed German soldiers who were guarding him. Having been recaptured and re-confined, Lt. Izac made a second and successful attempt to escape, breaking his way through barbed-wire fences and deliberately drawing the fire of the armed guards in the hope of permitting others to escape during the confusion. He made his way through the mountains of southwestern Germany, having only raw vegetables for food, and at the end, swam the River Rhine during the night in the immediate vicinity of German sentries.

JANSON, ERNEST AUGUST (Navy Medal)
• Rank and organization: Gunnery Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, 49th Company. (Served under name of Charles F. Hoffman)
• Accredited to: New York
• Also received Army Medal of Honor
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy near Chateau-Thierry, France, 6 June 1918. Immediately after the company to which G/Sgt. Janson belonged, had reached its objective on Hill 142, several hostile counterattacks were launched against the line before the new position had been consolidated. G/Sgt. Janson was attempting to organize a position on the north slope of the hill when he saw 12 of the enemy, armed with 5 light machineguns, crawling toward his group. Giving the alarm, he rushed the hostile detachment, bayoneted the 2 leaders, and forced the others to flee, abandoning their guns. His quick action, initiative and courage drove the enemy from a position from which they could have swept the hill with machinegun fire and forced the withdrawal of our troops.

JOHNSON, HENRY
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company C, 369th Infantry Regiment, 93rd Division, American Expeditionary Forces
• Place and Date: Argonne Forest, Champagne, France | May 15, 1918
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty: Private Johnson distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a member of Company C, 369th Infantry Regiment, 93rd Division, American Expeditionary Forces, during combat operations against the enemy on the front lines of the Western Front in France on May 15, 1918. Private Johnson and another soldier were on sentry duty at a forward outpost when they received a surprise attack from a German raiding party consisting of at least 12 soldiers. While under intense enemy fire and despite receiving significant wounds, Private Johnson mounted a brave retaliation, resulting in several enemy casualties. When his fellow soldier was badly wounded, Private Johnson prevented him from being taken prisoner by German forces. Private Johnson exposed himself to grave danger by advancing from his position to engage an enemy soldier in hand-to-hand combat. Wielding only a knife and gravely wounded himself, Private Johnson continued fighting and took his Bolo knife and stabbed it through an enemy soldier’s head. Displaying great courage, Private Johnson held back the enemy force until they retreated. Private Johnson’s extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the United States Army.

JOHNSTON, HAROLD I.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant (then Private First Class), U.S. Army, Company A, 356th Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date: Near Pouilly, France, 9 November 1918
• Entered service at: Chicago, Ill.
• G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919
Citation: When information was desired as to the enemy’s position on the opposite side of the Meuse River, Sgt. Johnston, with another soldier, volunteered without hesitation and swam the river to reconnoiter the exact location of the enemy. He succeeded in reaching the opposite bank, despite the evident determination of the enemy to prevent a crossing. Having obtained his information, he again entered the water for his return. This was accomplished after a severe struggle which so exhausted him that he had to be assisted from the water, after which he rendered his report of the exploit.

KARNES, JAMES E.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company D, 117th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Estrees, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Knoxville, Tenn.
• G.O. No.: 50, W.D., 1919
Citation: During an advance, his company was held up by a machinegun, which was enfilading the line. Accompanied by another soldier, he advanced against this position and succeeded in reducing the nest by killing 3 and capturing 7 of the enemy and their guns.

KATZ, PHILLIP C.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company C, 363d Infantry, 91st Division
• Place and date: Near Eclisfontaine, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: San Francisco, Calif.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: After his company had withdrawn for a distance of 200 yards on a line with the units on its flanks, Sgt. Katz learned that one of his comrades had been left wounded in an exposed position at the point from which the withdrawal had taken place. Voluntarily crossing an area swept by heavy machinegun fire, he advanced to where the wounded soldier lay and carried him to a place of safety.
KAUFMAN, BENJAMIN
• Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company K, 308th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: In the forest of Argonne, France, 4 October 1918
• Entered service at: Brooklyn, N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 50, W.D., 1919
Citation: He took out a patrol for the purpose of attacking an enemy machinegun which had checked the advance of his company. Before reaching the gun he became separated from his patrol and a machinegun bullet shattered his right arm. Without hesitation he advanced on the gun alone, throwing grenades with his left hand and charging with an empty pistol, taking one prisoner and scattering the crew, bringing the gun and prisoner back to the first-aid station.
KELLY, JOHN JOSEPH
Army Medal
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Marine Corps, 78th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division
• Place and date: At Blanc Mont Ridge, France, 3 October 1918
• Entered service at: Chicago, Ill.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Pvt. Kelly ran through our own barrage 100 yards in advance of the front line and attacked an enemy machinegun nest, killing the gunner with a grenade, shooting another member of the crew with his pistol, and returning through the barrage with 8 prisoners.
Navy Medal
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the 78th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division, in action with the enemy at Blanc Mont Ridge, France, 3 October 1918. Pvt. Kelly ran through our own barrage a hundred yards in advance of the front line and attacked an enemy machinegun nest, killing the gunner with a grenade, shooting another member of the crew with his pistol, and returning through the barrage with 8 prisoners.

*KOCAK, MATEJ
Army Medal
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, 66th Company, 5th Regiment, 2d Division
• Place and date: Near Soissons, France, 18 July 1918
• Entered service at: New York, N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D., 1919
Citation: When the advance of his battalion was checked by a hidden machinegun nest, he went forward alone, unprotected by covering fire from his own men, and worked in between the German positions in the face of fire from enemy covering detachments. Locating the machinegun nest, he rushed it and with his bayonet drove off the crew. Shortly after this he organized 25 French colonial soldiers who had become separated from their company and led them in attacking another machinegun nest, which was also put out of action.
Navy Medal
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving with the 66th Company, 5th Regiment, 2d Division, in action in the Viller-Cottertes section, south of Soissons, France, 18 July 1918. When a hidden machinegun nest halted the advance of his battalion, Sgt. Kocak went forward alone unprotected by covering fire and worked his way in between the German positions in the face of heavy enemy fire. Rushing the enemy position with his bayonet, he drove off the crew. Later the same day, Sgt. Kocak organized French colonial soldiers who had become separated from their company and led them in an attack on another machinegun nest which was also put out of action.

LATHAM, JOHN CRIDLAND
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division
• Place and date: Near Le Catelet, France, 29 September 1918
• Entered service at: Rutherford, N.J.
• G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919
Citation: Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Sgt. Latham, Sgt. Alan L. Eggers, and Cpl. Thomas E. O’Shea took cover in a shellhole well within the enemy’s lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank which had become disabled 30 yards from them, the 3 soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank under heavy fire from German machineguns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area, Cpl. O’Shea was mortally wounded, but his companions, undeterred, proceeded to the tank, rescued a wounded officer, and assisted 2 wounded soldiers to cover in the sap of a nearby trench. Sgts. Latham and Eggers then returned to the tank in the face of the violent fire, dismounted a Hotchkiss gun, and took it back to where the wounded men were keeping off the enemy all day by effective use of the gun and later bringing it with the wounded men back to our lines under cover of darkness.

*LEMERT, MILO
• Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company G, 119th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Bellicourt, France, 29 September 1918
• Entered service at: Crossville, Tenn.
• G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919
Citation: Seeing that the left flank of his company was held up, he located the enemy machinegun emplacement, which had been causing heavy casualties. In the face of heavy fire he rushed it single-handed, killing the entire crew with grenades. Continuing along the enemy trench in advance of the company, he reached another emplacement, which he also charged, silencing the gun with grenades. A third machinegun emplacement opened up on him from the left and with similar skill and bravery he destroyed this also. Later, in company with another sergeant, he attacked a fourth machinegun nest, being killed as he reached the parapet of the emplacement. His courageous action in destroying in turn 4 enemy machinegun nests prevented many casualties among his company and very materially aided in achieving the objective.

LOMAN, BERGER
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company H, 132d Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: Near Consenvoye, France, 9 October 1918
• Entered service at: Chicago, Ill.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: When his company had reached a point within 100 yards of its objective, to which it was advancing under terrific machinegun fire, Pvt. Loman voluntarily and unaided made his way forward after all others had taken shelter from the direct fire of an enemy machinegun. He crawled to a flank position of the gun and, after killing or capturing the entire crew, turned the machinegun on the retreating enemy.

*LUKE, FRANK, JR.
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Corps, 27th Aero Squadron, 1st Pursuit Group, Air Service
• Place and date: Near Murvaux, France, 29 September 1918 (Air Mission)
• Entered service at: Phoenix, Ariz.
• G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919
Citation: After having previously destroyed a number of enemy aircraft within 17 days he voluntarily started on a patrol after German observation balloons. Though pursued by 8 German planes which were protecting the enemy balloon line, he unhesitatingly attacked and shot down in flames 3 German balloons, being himself under heavy fire from ground batteries and the hostile planes. Severely wounded, he descended to within 50 meters of the ground, and flying at this low altitude near the town of Murvaux opened fire upon enemy troops, killing 6 and wounding as many more. Forced to make a landing and surrounded on all sides by the enemy, who called upon him to surrender, he drew his automatic pistol and defended himself gallantly until he fell dead from a wound in the chest.

LYLE, ALEXANDER GORDON
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant Commander (Dental Corps), U.S. Navy
• Appointed from: Massachusetts
• Other Navy award: Legion of Merit
Citation: For extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty while serving with the 5th Regiment, U.S. Marine Corps. Under heavy shellfire, on 23 April 1918, on the French Front, Lt. Comdr. Lyle rushed to the assistance of Cpl. Thomas Regan, who was seriously wounded, and administered such effective surgical aid while bombardment was still continuing, as to save the life of Cpl. Regan.

MacKENZlE, JOHN
• Rank and organization: Chief Boatswain’s Mate, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: Massachusetts
• G.O. No.: 391, 1918
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving on board the U.S.S. Remlik, on the morning of 17 December 1917, when the Remlik encountered a heavy gale. During this gale, there was a heavy sea running. The depth charge box on the taffrail aft, containing a Sperry depth charge, was washed overboard, the depth charge itself falling inboard and remaining on deck. MacKenzie, on his own initiative, went aft and sat down on the depth charge, as it was impracticable to carry it to safety until the ship was headed up into the sea. In acting as he did, MacKenzie exposed his life and prevented a serious accident to the ship and probable loss of the ship and the entire crew.

MADISON, JAMES JONAS
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant Commander, U.S. Naval Reserve Force
• Appointed from: Mississippi
Citation: For exceptionally heroic service in a position of great responsibility as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Ticonderoga, when, on 4 October 1918, that vessel was attacked by an enemy submarine and was sunk after a prolonged and gallant resistance. The submarine opened fire at a range of 500 yards, the first shots taking effect on the bridge and forecastle, 1 of the 2 forward guns of the Ticonderoga being disabled by the second shot. The fire was returned and the fight continued for nearly 2 hours. Lt. Comdr. Madison was severely wounded early in the fight, but caused himself to be placed in a chair on the bridge and continued to direct the fire and to maneuver the ship. When the order was finally given to abandon the sinking ship, he became unconscious from loss of blood, but was lowered into a lifeboat and was saved, with 31 others, out of a total number of 236 on board.

MALLON, GEORGE H.
• Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 132d Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: In the Bois-de-Forges, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: Minneapolis, Minn.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Becoming separated from the balance of his company because of a fog, Capt. Mallon, with 9 soldiers, pushed forward and attacked 9 active hostile machineguns, capturing all of them without the loss of a man. Continuing on through the woods, he led his men in attacking a battery of four 155-millimeter howitzers, which were in action, rushing the position and capturing the battery and its crew. In this encounter Capt. Mallon personally attacked 1 of the enemy with his fists. Later, when the party came upon 2 more machineguns, this officer sent men to the flanks while he rushed forward directly in the face of the fire and silenced the guns, being the first one of the party to reach the nest. The exceptional gallantry and determination displayed by Capt. Mallon resulted in the capture of 100 prisoners, 11 machineguns, four 155-millimeter howitzers and 1 antiaircraft gun.

MANNING, SIDNEY E.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army Company G, 167th Infantry, 42d Division
• Place and date: Near Breuvannes, France, 28 July 1918
• Entering service at: Flomaton, Ala.
• G.O. No.: 44, W.D., 1919
Citation: When his platoon commander and platoon sergeant had both become casualties soon after the beginning of an assault on strongly fortified heights overlooking the Ourcq River, Cpl. Manning took command of his platoon, which was near the center of the attacking line. Though himself severely wounded he led forward the 35 men remaining in the platoon and finally succeeded in gaining a foothold on the enemy’s position, during which time he had received more wounds and all but 7 of his men had fallen. Directing the consolidation of the position, he held off a large body of the enemy only 50 yards away by fire from his automatic rifle. He declined to take cover until his line had been entirely consolidated with the line of the platoon on the front when he dragged himself to shelter, suffering from 9 wounds in all parts of the body.

McGUNIGAL, PATRICK
• Rank and organization: Shipfitter First Class, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: Ohio
• G.O. No.: 341, 1917
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while attached to the Huntington. On the morning of 17 September 1917, while the U.S.S. Huntington was passing through the war zone, a kite balloon was sent up with Lt. (j.g.) H. W. Hoyt, U.S. Navy, as observer. When the balloon was about 400 feet in the air, the temperature suddenly dropped, causing the balloon to descend about 200 feet, when it was struck by a squall. The balloon was hauled to the ship’s side, but the basket trailed in the water and the pilot was submerged. McGunigal, with great daring, climbed down the side of the ship, jumped to the ropes leading to the basket, and cleared the tangle enough to get the pilot out of them. He then helped the pilot to get clear, put a bowline around him, and enabled him to be hauled to the deck. A bowline was lowered to McGunigal and he was taken safely aboard.

McMURTRY, GEORGE G.
• Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 308th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: At Charlevaux, in the forest of Argonne, France, 2-8 October 1918
• Entered service at: New York, N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 118, W.D., 1918
Citation: Commanded a battalion which was cut off and surrounded by the enemy and although wounded in the knee by shrapnel on 4 October and suffering great pain, he continued throughout the entire period to encourage his officers and men with a resistless optimism that contributed largely toward preventing panic and disorder among the troops, who were without food, cut off from communication with our lines. On 4 October during a heavy barrage, he personally directed and supervised the moving of the wounded to shelter before himself seeking shelter. On 6 October he was again wounded in the shoulder by a German grenade, but continued personally to organize and direct the defense against the German attack on the position until the attack was defeated. He continued to direct and command his troops, refusing relief, and personally led his men out of the position after assistance arrived before permitting himself to be taken to the hospital on 8 October. During this period the successful defense of the position was due largely to his efforts.

*MESTROVITCH, JAMES I.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company C, 111th Infantry, 28th Division
• Place and date: At Fismette, France, 10 August 1918
• Entered service at: Pittsburgh, Pa.
• G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919
Citation: Seeing his company commander Iying wounded 30 yards in front of the line after his company had withdrawn to a sheltered position behind a stone wall, Sgt. Mestrovitch voluntarily left cover and crawled through heavy machinegun and shell fire to where the officer lay. He took the officer upon his back and crawled to a place of safety, where he administered first-aid treatment, his exceptional heroism saving the officer’s life.

MILES, L. WARDLAW
• Rank and organization. Captain, U.S. Army, 308th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: Near Revillon, France, 14 September 1918
• Entered service at: Princeton, N.J.
• G.O. No.: 44, W.D., 1919
Citation: Volunteered to lead his company in a hazardous attack on a commanding trench position near the Aisne Canal, which other troops had previously attempted to take without success. His company immediately met with intense machinegun fire, against which it had no artillery assistance, but Capt. Miles preceded the first wave and assisted in cutting a passage through the enemy’s wire entanglements. In so doing he was wounded 5 times by machinegun bullets, both legs and 1 arm being fractured, whereupon he ordered himself placed on a stretcher and had himself carried forward to the enemy trench in order that he might encourage and direct his company, which by this time had suffered numerous casualties. Under the inspiration of this officer’s indomitable spirit his men held the hostile position and consolidated the front line after an action lasting 2 hours, at the conclusion of which Capt. Miles was carried to the aid station against his will.

*MILLER, OSCAR F.
• Rank and organization: Major, U.S. Army, 361st Infantry, 91st Division
• Place and date: Near Gesnes, France, 28 September 1918
• Entered service at: Los Angeles, Calif.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D. 1919
Citation: After 2 days of intense physical and mental strain, during which Maj. Miller had led his battalion in the front line of the advance through the forest of Argonne, the enemy was met in a prepared position south of Gesnes. Though almost exhausted, he energetically reorganized his battalion and ordered an attack. Upon reaching open ground the advancing line began to waver in the face of machinegun fire from the front and flanks and direct artillery fire. Personally leading his command group forward between his front-line companies, Maj. Miller inspired his men by his personal courage, and they again pressed on toward the hostile position. As this officer led the renewed attack he was shot in the right leg, but he nevertheless staggered forward at the head of his command. Soon afterwards he was again shot in the right arm, but he continued the charge, personally cheering his troops on through the heavy machinegun fire. Just before the objective was reached he received a wound in the abdomen, which forced him to the ground, but he continued to urge his men on, telling them to push on to the next ridge and leave him where he lay. He died from his wounds a few days later.

MORELOCK, STERLING
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company M, 28th Infantry, 1st Division
• Place and date: Near Exermont, France, 4 October 1918
• Entered service at: Oquawka, Ill.
• G.O. No.: 43, W.D., 1922
Citation: While his company was being held up by heavy enemy fire, Pvt. Morelock, with 3 other men who were acting as runners at company headquarters, voluntarily led them as a patrol in advance of his company’s frontline through an intense rifle, artillery, and machinegun fire and penetrated a woods which formed the German frontline. Encountering a series of 5 hostile machinegun nests, containing from 1 to 5 machineguns each, with his patrol he cleaned them all out, gained and held complete mastery of the situation until the arrival of his company commander with reinforcements, even though his entire party had become casualties. He rendered first aid to the injured and evacuated them by using stretcher bearers 10 German prisoners whom he had captured. Soon thereafter his company commander was wounded and while dressing his wound Pvt. Morelock was very severely wounded in the hip, which forced his evacuation. His heroic action and devotion to duty were an inspiration to the entire regiment.

NEIBAUR, THOMAS C.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company M, 167th 1 Infantry, 42d Division
• Place and date: Near Landres-et-St. Georges, France, 16 October 1918
• Entered service at: Sugar City, Idaho.
• G.O. No.: 118, W.D., 1918
Citation: On the afternoon of 16 October 1918, when the Cote-de-Chatillion had just been gained after bitter fighting and the summit of that strong bulwark in the Kriemhilde Stellung was being organized, Pvt. Neibaur was sent out on patrol with his automatic rifle squad to enfilade enemy machinegun nests. As he gained the ridge he set up his automatic rifle and was directly thereafter wounded in both legs by fire from a hostile machinegun on his flank. The advance wave of the enemy troops, counterattacking, had about gained the ridge, and although practically cut off and surrounded, the remainder of his detachment being killed or wounded, this gallant soldier kept his automatic rifle in operation to such effect that by his own efforts and by fire from the skirmish line of his company, at least 100 yards in his rear, the attack was checked. The enemy wave being halted and Iying prone, 4 of the enemy attacked Pvt. Neibaur at close quarters. These he killed. He then moved alone among the enemy Iying on the ground about him, in the midst of the fire from his own lines, and by coolness and gallantry captured 11 prisoners at the point of his pistol and, although painfully wounded, brought them back to our lines. The counterattack in full force was arrested to a large extent by the single efforts of this soldier, whose heroic exploits took place against the skyline in full view of his entire battalion.
Note1: The U.S. Senate report which is the source for these citations indicates that Private Niebaur’s service for this award was with the 107th Infantry, part of the 42d Division. The 107th Infantry Regiment, however, was not a part of the 42d Division. The award citation was originally published in War Department General Orders 118, 1918, and shows Private Niebaur’s unit as the 167th Infantry (which was an element of the 42d Division). Based on this evidence, it appears that the Senate report contains a typographical error, and the citation posted here has been changed to reflect the unit as the 107th Infantry, as listed in the General Orders. (CMH Website Operations)

O’NEILL, RICHARD W.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company D, 165th Infantry, 42d Division
• Place and date: On the Ourcq River, France, 30 July 1918
• Entered service at: New York, N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 30, W.D., 1921
Citation: In advance of an assaulting line, he attacked a detachment of about 25 of the enemy. In the ensuing hand-to-hand encounter he sustained pistol wounds, but heroically continued in the advance, during which he received additional wounds: but, with great physical effort, he remained in active command of his detachment. Being again wounded, he was forced by weakness and loss of blood to be evacuated, but insisted upon being taken first to the battalion commander in order to transmit to him valuable information relative to enemy positions and the disposition of our men.

ORMSBEE, FRANCIS EDWARD, JR.
• Rank and organization: Chief Machinist’s Mate, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: Florida
• G.O. No.: 436, 1918
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while attached to the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Fla., on 25 September 1918. While flying with Ens. J. A. Jova, Ormsbee saw a plane go into a tailspin and crash about three-quarters of a mile to the right. Having landed near by, Ormsbee lost no time in going overboard and made for the wreck, which was all under water except the 2 wing tips. He succeeded in partially extricating the gunner so that his head was out of water, and held him in this position until the speedboat arrived. Ormsbee then made a number of desperate attempts to rescue the pilot, diving into the midst of the tangled wreckage although cut about the hands, but was too late to save his life.

*OSBORNE, WEEDON E.
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant, Junior Grade, (Dental Corps), U.S. Navy
• Appointed from: Illinois
• Entered
• Other
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while attached to the 6th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in actual conflict with the enemy and under fire during the advance on Bouresche, France, on 6 June 1918. In the hottest of the fighting when the marines made their famous advance on Bouresche at the southern edge of Belleau Wood, Lt (j.g.). Osborne threw himself zealously into the work of rescuing the wounded. Extremely courageous in the performance of this perilous task, he was killed while carrying a wounded officer to a place of safety.

*O’SHEA, THOMAS E.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Machine Gun Company, 107th Infantry, 27th Division
• Place and date: Near Le Catelet, France, 29 September 1918
• Entered service at: Summit, N.J.
• G.O. No.: 20, W.D., 1919
Citation: Becoming separated from their platoon by a smoke barrage, Cpl. O’Shea, with 2 other soldiers, took cover in a shell hole well within the enemy’s lines. Upon hearing a call for help from an American tank, which had become disabled 30 yards from them, the 3 soldiers left their shelter and started toward the tank under heavy fire from German machineguns and trench mortars. In crossing the fire-swept area Cpl. O’Shea was mortally wounded and died of his wounds shortly afterwards.

PARKER, SAMUEL I.
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, Company K, 28th Infantry, 1st Division
• Place and date: Near Soissons, France, 18-19 July 1918
• Entered service at: Monroe, N.C.
• G.O. No.: 1, W.D. 1937
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. During the attack the 2d and 3d Battalions of the 28th Infantry were merged, and after several hours of severe fighting, successfully established a frontline position. In so doing, a gap was left between the right flank of the French 153d Division on their left and the left flank of the 28th Infantry, exposing the left flank to a terrific enfilade fire from several enemy machineguns located in a rock quarry on high ground. 2d Lt. Parker, observing this serious situation, ordered his depleted platoon to follow him in an attack upon the strong point. Meeting a disorganized group of French Colonials wandering leaderlessly about, he persuaded them to join his platoon. This consolidated group followed 2d Lt. Parker through direct enemy rifle and machinegun fire to the crest of the hill, and rushing forward, took the quarry by storm, capturing 6 machineguns and about 40 prisoners. The next day when the assault was continued, 2d Lt. Parker in command of the merged 2d and 3d Battalions was in support of the 1st Battalion. Although painfully wounded in the foot, he refused to be evacuated and continued to lead his command until the objective was reached. Seeing that the assault battalion was subjected to heavy enfilade fire due to a gap between it and the French on its left, 2d Lt. Parker led his battalion through this heavy fire up on the line to the left of the 1st Battalion and thereby closed the gap, remaining in command of his battalion until the newly established lines of the 28th Infantry were thoroughly consolidated. In supervising the consolidation of the new position, 2d Lt. Parker was compelled to crawl about on his hands and knees on account of his painful wound. His conspicuous gallantry and spirit of self-sacrifice were a source of great inspiration to the members of the entire command.

PECK, ARCHIE A.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company A, 307th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: In the Argonne Forest, France, 6 October 1918
• Entered service at: Hornell, N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: While engaged with 2 other soldiers on patrol duty, he and his comrades were subjected to the direct fire of an enemy machinegun, at which time both his companions were wounded. Returning to his company, he obtained another soldier to accompany him to assist in bringing in the wounded men. His assistant was killed in the exploit, but he continued on, twice returning safely bringing in both men, being under terrific machinegun fire during the entire Journey.

*PERKINS, MICHAEL J.
• Rank and organization: Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company D, 101st Infantry, 26th Division
• Place and date: At Belieu Bois, France, 27 October 1918
• Entered service at: Boston, Mass.
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D. 1919
Citation: He, voluntarily and alone, crawled to a German “pill box” machinegun emplacement, from which grenades were being thrown at his platoon. Awaiting his opportunity, when the door was again opened and another grenade thrown, he threw a bomb inside, bursting the door open, and then, drawing his trench knife, rushed into the emplacement. In a hand-to-hand struggle he killed or wounded several of the occupants and captured about 25 prisoners, at the same time silencing 7 machineguns.

PETTY, ORLANDO HENDERSON
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant (Medical Corps), USNRF
• Appointed from: Pennsylvania
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving with the 5th Regiment, U.S. Marines, in France during the attack in the Boise de Belleau, 11 June 1918. While under heavy fire of high explosive and gas shells in the town of Lucy, where his dressing station was located, Lt. Petty attended to and evacuated the wounded under most trying conditions. Having been knocked to the ground by an exploding gas shell which tore his mask, Lt. Petty discarded the mask and courageously continued his work. His dressing station being hit and demolished, he personally helped carry Capt. Williams, wounded, through the shellfire to a place of safety.

*PIKE, EMORY J.
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army, Division Machinegun Officer, 82d Division
• Place and date: Near Vandieres, France, 15 September 1918
• Entered service at: Des Moines, Iowa
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Having gone forward to reconnoiter new machinegun positions, Lt. Col. Pike offered his assistance in reorganizing advance infantry units which had become disorganized during a heavy artillery shelling. He succeeded in locating only about 20 men, but with these he advanced and when later joined by several infantry platoons rendered inestimable service in establishing outposts, encouraging all by his cheeriness, in spite of the extreme danger of the situation. When a shell had wounded one of the men in the outpost, Lt. Col. Pike immediately went to his aid and was severely wounded himself when another shell burst in the same place. While waiting to be brought to the rear, Lt. Col. Pike continued in command, still retaining his jovial manner of encouragement, directing the reorganization until the position could be held. The entire operation was carried on under terrific bombardment, and the example of courage and devotion to duty, as set by Lt. Col. Pike, established the highest standard of morale and confidence to all under his charge. The wounds he received were the cause of his death.

POPE, THOMAS A.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company E, 131st Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: At Hamel, France, 4 July 1918
• Entered service at: Chicago, Ill.
• G.O. No.: 44, W.D., 1919
Citation: His company was advancing behind the tanks when it was halted by hostile machinegun fire. Going forward alone, he rushed a machinegun nest, killed several of the crew with his bayonet, and, standing astride his gun, held off the others until reinforcements arrived and captured them.

*PRUITT, JOHN HENRY
Army Medal
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, 78th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division
• Place and date: At Blanc Mont Ridge, France, 3 October 1918
• Entered service at: Phoenix, Ariz.
• G.O. No.: 62, W.D., 1919
Citation: Cpl. Pruitt single-handed attacked 2 machineguns, capturing them and killing 2 of the enemy. He then captured 40 prisoners in a dugout nearby. This gallant soldier was killed soon afterward by shellfire while he was sniping at the enemy.
Navy Medal
Citation: For extraordinary gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the 78th Company, 6th Regiment, 2d Division, in action with the enemy at Blanc Mont Ridge, France, 3 October 1918. Cpl. Pruitt, single-handed attacked 2 machineguns, capturing them and killing 2 of the enemy. He then captured 40 prisoners in a dugout nearby. This gallant soldier was killed soon afterward by shellfire while he was sniping the enemy.

REGAN, PATRICK
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 115th Infantry, 29th Division
• Place and date: Bois-de-Consenvoye, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Los Angeles, Calif.
• G.O. No.: 50, W.D., 1919
Citation: While leading his platoon against a strong enemy machinegun nest which had held up the advance of 2 companies, 2d Lt. Regan divided his men into 3 groups, sending 1 group to either flank, and he himself attacking with an automatic rifle team from the front. Two of the team were killed outright, while 2d Lt. Regan and the third man were seriously wounded, the latter unable to advance. Although severely wounded, 2d Lt. Regan dashed with empty pistol into the machinegun nest, capturing 30 Austrian gunners and 4 machineguns. This gallant deed permitted the companies to advance, avoiding a terrific enemy fire. Despite his wounds, he continued to lead his platoon forward until ordered to the rear by his commanding officer.

RICKENBACKER, EDWARD V. (Air Mission)
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Corps, 94th Aero Squadron, Air Service
• Place and date: Near Billy, France, 25 September 1918
• Entered service at: Columbus, Ohio.
• G.O. No.: 2, W.D., 1931
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy near Billy, France, 25 September 1918. While on a voluntary patrol over the lines, 1st Lt. Rickenbacker attacked 7 enemy planes (5 type Fokker, protecting two type Halberstadt). Disregarding the odds against him, he dived on them and shot down one of the Fokkers out of control. He then attacked one of the Halberstadts and sent it down also.

ROBB, GEORGE S.
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 369th Infantry, 93d Division
• Place and date: Near Sechault, France, 29-30 September 1918
• Entered service at: Salina, Kans.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: While leading his platoon in the assault 1st Lt. Robb was severely wounded by machinegun fire, but rather than go to the rear for proper treatment he remained with his platoon until ordered to the dressing station by his commanding officer. Returning within 45 minutes, he remained on duty throughout the entire night, inspecting his lines and establishing outposts. Early the next morning he was again wounded, once again displaying his remarkable devotion to duty by remaining in command of his platoon. Later the same day a bursting shell added 2 more wounds, the same shell killing his commanding officer and 2 officers of his company. He then assumed command of the company and organized its position in the trenches. Displaying wonderful courage and tenacity at the critical times, he was the only officer of his battalion who advanced beyond the town, and by clearing machinegun and sniping posts contributed largely to the aid of his battalion in holding their objective. His example of bravery and fortitude and his eagerness to continue with his mission despite severe wounds set before the enlisted men of his command a most wonderful standard of morale and self-sacrifice.

*ROBERTS, HAROLD W.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army Company A, 344th Battalion, Tank Corps
• Place and date: In the Montrebeau Woods France 4 October 1918
• Entered service at: San Francisco, Calif.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Cpl. Roberts, a tank driver, was moving his tank into a clump of bushes to afford protection to another tank which had become disabled. The tank slid into a shell hole, 10 feet deep, filled with water, and was immediately submerged. Knowing that only 1 of the 2 men in the tank could escape, Cpl. Roberts said to the gunner, “Well, only one of us can get out, and out you go,” whereupon he pushed his companion through the back door of the tank and was himself drowned.

ROBINSON, ROBERT GUY
• Rank and organization: Gunnery Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, 1st Marine Aviation Force
• Place and date: Pittham, Belgium, 14 October 1918
• Entered service at: Chicago, Ill.
Citation: For extraordinary heroism as observer in the 1st Marine Aviation Force at the front in France. In company with planes from Squadron 218, Royal Air Force, conducting an air raid on 8 October 1918, G/Sgt. Robinson’s plane was attacked by 9 enemy scouts. In the fight which followed, he shot down 1 of the enemy planes. In a later air raid over Pittham, Belgium, on 14 October 1918, his plane and 1 other became separated from their formation on account of motor trouble and were attacked by 12 enemy scouts. Acting with conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in the fight which ensued, G/Sgt. Robinson, after shooting down 1 of the enemy planes, was struck by a bullet which carried away most of his elbow. At the same time his gun jammed. While his pilot maneuvered for position, he cleared the jam with one hand and returned to the fight. Although his left arm was useless, he fought off the enemy scouts until he collapsed after receiving 2 more bullet wounds, one in the stomach and one in the thigh.

SAMPLER, SAMUEL M.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company H, 142d Infantry, 36th Division
• Place and date: Near St. Etienne, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Altus, Okla.
• G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919
Citation: His company having suffered severe casualties during an advance under machinegun fire, was finally stopped. Cpl. Sampler detected the position of the enemy machineguns on an elevation. Armed with German handgrenades, which he had picked up, he left the line and rushed forward in the face of heavy fire until he was near the hostile nest, where he grenaded the position. His third grenade landed among the enemy, killing 2, silencing the machineguns, and causing the surrender of 28 Germans, whom he sent to the rear as prisoners. As a result of his act the company was immediately enabled to resume the advance.

SANDLIN, WILLIE
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company A, 132d Infantry, 33d Division
• Place and date: At Bois-de-Forges, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: Hyden, Ky.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: He showed conspicuous gallantry in action by advancing alone directly on a machinegun nest which was holding up the line with its fire. He killed the crew with a grenade and enabled the line to advance. Later in the day he attacked alone and put out of action 2 other machinegun nests, setting a splendid example of bravery and coolness to his men.

*SAWELSON, WILLIAM
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company M, 312th Infantry, 78th Division
• Place and date: At Grand-Pre, France, 26 October, 1918
• Entered service at: Harrison, N.J.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Hearing a wounded man in a shell hole some distance away calling for water, Sgt. Sawelson, upon his own initiative, left shelter and crawled through heavy machinegun fire to where the man lay, giving him what water he had in his canteen. He then went back to his own shell hole, obtained more water, and was returning to the wounded man when he was killed by a machinegun bullet.

SCHAFFNER, DWITE H.
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 306th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: Near St. Hubert’s Pavillion, Boureuilles, France, 28 September 1918
• Entered service at: Falls Creek, Pa.
• G.O. No.: 15, W.D., 1923
Citation: He led his men in an attack on St. Hubert’s Pavillion through terrific enemy machinegun, rifle, and artillery fire and drove the enemy from a strongly held entrenched position after hand-to-hand fighting. His bravery and contempt for danger inspired his men, enabling them to hold fast in the face of 3 determined enemy counterattacks. His company’s position being exposed to enemy fire from both flanks, he made 3 efforts to locate an enemy machinegun which had caused heavy casualties. On his third reconnaissance he discovered the gun position and personally silenced the gun, killing or wounding the crew. The third counterattack made by the enemy was initiated by the appearance of a small detachment in advance of the enemy attacking wave. When almost within reach of the American front line the enemy appeared behind them, attacking vigorously with pistols, rifles, and handgrenades, causing heavy casualties in the American platoon. 1st Lt. Schaffner mounted the parapet of the trench and used his pistol and grenades killing a number of enemy soldiers, finally reaching the enemy officer leading the attacking forces, a captain, shooting and mortally wounding the latter with his pistol, and dragging the captured officer back to the company’s trench, securing from him valuable information as to the enemy’s strength and position. The information enabled 1st Lt. Schaffner to maintain for S hours the advanced position of his company despite the fact that it was surrounded on 3 sides by strong enemy forces. The undaunted bravery, gallant soldierly conduct, and leadership displayed by 1st Lt. Schaffner undoubtedly saved the survivors of the company from death or capture.

SCHMIDT, OSCAR, JR.
• Rank and organization: Chief Gunner’s Mate, U.S. Navy
• Place and date: At sea, 9 October 1918
• Entered service at: Pennsylvania
• G.O. No.: 450, 1919
Citation: For gallant conduct and extraordinary heroism while attached to the U.S.S. Chestnut Hill, on the occasion of the explosion and subsequent fire on board the U.S. submarine chaser 219. Schmidt, seeing a man, whose legs were partly blown off, hanging on a line from the bow of the 219, jumped overboard, swam to the sub chaser and carried him from the bow to the stern where a member of the 219’s crew helped him land the man on the afterdeck of the submarine. Schmidt then endeavored to pass through the flames amidships to get another man who was seriously burned. This he was unable to do, but when the injured man fell overboard and drifted to the stern of the chaser Schmidt helped him aboard.

SEIBERT, LLOYD M.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company F, 364th Infantry, 91st Division
• Place and date: Near Epinonville, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: Salinas, Calif.
• G.O. No.: 445, W.D., 1919
Citation. Suffering from illness, Sgt. Seibert remained with his platoon and led his men with the highest courage and leadership under heavy shell and machinegun fire. With 2 other soldiers he charged a machinegun emplacement in advance of their company, he himself killing one of the enemy with a shotgun and capturing 2 others. In this encounter he was wounded, but he nevertheless continued in action, and when a withdrawal was ordered he returned with the last unit, assisting a wounded comrade. Later in the evening he volunteered and carried in wounded until he fainted from exhaustion.

SHEMIN, WILLIAM
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, Company G, 47th Infantry, 4th Division, American Expeditionary Force
• Place and date: Vesle River, South East of Bazoches, France | August 7-9, 1918
Citation. For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty:Sergeant Shemin distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a Rifleman with G Company, 2d Battalion, 47th Infantry Regiment, 4th Division, American Expeditionary Forces, in connection with combat operations against an armed enemy on the Vesle River, near Bazoches, France from August 7 to August 9, 1918. Sergeant Shemin left cover and crossed open space, repeatedly exposing himself to heavy machine-gun and rifle fire, to rescue wounded. After Officers and Senior Noncommissioned Officers had become casualties, Sergeant Shemin took command of the platoon and displayed great initiative under fire until wounded on August 9. Sergeant Shemin�s extraordinary heroism and selflessness, above and beyond the call of duty, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.

SIEGEL, JOHN OTTO
• Rank and organization Boatswain’s Mate Second Class, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: New Jersey
Citation: For extraordinary heroism while serving on board the Mohawk in performing a rescue mission aboard the schooner Hjeltenaes which was in flames on 1 November 1918. Going aboard the blazing vessel, Siegel rescued 2 men from the crew’s quarters and went back the third time. Immediately after he had entered the crew’s quarters, a steam pipe over the door bursted, making it impossible for him to escape. Siegel was overcome with smoke and fell to the deck, being finally rescued by some of the crew of the Mohawk who carried him out and rendered first aid.

*SKINKER, ALEXANDER R.
• Rank and organization: Captain, U.S. Army, 138th Infantry, 35th Division
• Place and date: At Cheppy, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: St. Louis, Mo.
• G.O. No.: 13, W.D., 1919
Citation: Unwilling to sacrifice his men when his company was held up by terrific machinegun fire from iron pill boxes in the Hindenburg Line, Capt. Skinker personally led an automatic rifleman and a carrier in an attack on the machineguns. The carrier was killed instantly, but Capt. Skinker seized the ammunition and continued through an opening in the barbed wire, feeding the automatic rifle until he, too, was killed.

SLACK, CLAYTON K.
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company D, 124th Machine Gun Battalion, 33d Division
• Place and date: Near Consenvoye, France, 8 October 1918.
• Entered service at: Madison, Wis.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Observing German soldiers under cover 50 yards away on the left flank, Pvt. Slack, upon his own initiative, rushed them with his rifle and, single-handed, captured 10 prisoners and 2 heavy-type machineguns, thus saving his company and neighboring organizations from heavy casualties.

*SMITH, FRED E.
• Rank and organization: Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army, 308th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: Near Binarville, France, 29 September 1918
• Entered service at: Bartlett, N. Dak.
• G.O. NO.: 49, W.D., 1922
Citation: When communication from the forward regimental post of command to the battalion leading the advance had been interrupted temporarily by the infiltration of small parties of the enemy armed with machineguns, Lt. Col. Smith personally led a party of 2 other officers and 10 soldiers, and went forward to reestablish runner posts and carry ammunition to the front line. The guide became confused and the party strayed to the left flank beyond the outposts of supporting troops, suddenly coming under fire from a group of enemy machineguns only 50 yards away. Shouting to the other members of his party to take cover this officer, in disregard of his danger, drew his pistol and opened fire on the German guncrew. About this time he fell, severely wounded in the side, but regaining his footing, he continued to fire on the enemy until most of the men in his party were out of danger. Refusing first-aid treatment he then made his way in plain view of the enemy to a handgrenade dump and returned under continued heavy machinegun fire for the purpose of making another attack on the enemy emplacements. As he was attempting to ascertain the exact location of the nearest nest, he again fell, mortally wounded.

*STOCKHAM, FRED W. (Army Medal)
• Rank and organization: Gunnery Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, 96th Company, 2d Battalion, 6th Regiment
• Place and date: In Bois-de-Belleau, France, 13-14 June 1918
• Entered service at: New York, N.Y.
Citation: During an intense enemy bombardment with high explosive and gas shells which wounded or killed many members of the company, G/Sgt. Stockham, upon noticing that the gas mask of a wounded comrade was shot away, without hesitation, removed his own gas mask and insisted upon giving it to the wounded man, well knowing that the effects of the gas would be fatal to himself. He continued with undaunted courage and valor to direct and assist in the evacuation of the wounded, until he himself collapsed from the effects of gas, dying as a result thereof a few days later. His courageous conduct undoubtedly saved the lives of many of his wounded comrades and his conspicuous gallantry and spirit of self-sacrifice were a source of great inspiration to all who served with him.

*STOWERS, FREDDIE
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company C, 371st Infantry Regiment, 93d Division
Citation: Corporal Stowers, distinguished himself by exceptional heroism on 28 September 1918 while serving as a squad leader in Company C, 371st Infantry Regiment, 93d Division. His company was the lead company during the attack on Hill 188, Champagne Marne Sector, France, during World War I. A few minutes after the attack began, the enemy ceased firing and began climbing up onto the parapets of the trenches, holding up their arms as if wishing to surrender. The enemy’s actions caused the American forces to cease fire and to come out into the open. As the company started forward and when within about 100 meters of the trench line, the enemy jumped back into their trenches and greeted Corporal Stowers’ company with interlocking bands of machine gun fire and mortar fire causing well over fifty percent casualties. Faced with incredible enemy resistance, Corporal Stowers took charge, setting such a courageous example of personal bravery and leadership that he inspired his men to follow him in the attack. With extraordinary heroism and complete disregard of personal danger under devastating fire, he crawled forward leading his squad toward an enemy machine gun nest, which was causing heavy casualties to his company. After fierce fighting, the machine gun position was destroyed and the enemy soldiers were killed. Displaying great courage and intrepidity Corporal Stowers continued to press the attack against a determined enemy. While crawling forward and urging his men to continue the attack on a second trench line, he was gravely wounded by machine gun fire. Although Corporal Stowers was mortally wounded, he pressed forward, urging on the members of his squad, until he died. Inspired by the heroism and display of bravery of Corporal Stowers, his company continued the attack against incredible odds, contributing to the capture of Hill 188 and causing heavy enemy casualties. Corporal Stowers’ conspicuous gallantry, extraordinary heroism, and supreme devotion to his men were well above and beyond the call of duty, follow the finest traditions of military service, and reflect the utmost credit on him and the United States Army.

SULLIVAN, DANIEL AUGUSTUS JOSEPH
• Rank and organization: Ensign, U.S. Naval Reserve Force
• Appointed from: South Carolina
Citation: For extraordinary heroism as an officer of the U.S.S. Cristabel in conflict with an enemy submarine on 21 May 1918. As a result of the explosion of a depth bomb dropped near the submarine, the Christabel was so badly shaken that a number of depth charges which had been set for firing were thrown about the deck and there was imminent danger that they would explode. Ens. Sullivan immediately fell on the depth charges and succeeded in securing them, thus saving the ship from disaster, which would inevitably have caused great loss of life.

*TALBOT, RALPH
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Marine Corps
• Appointed from: Connecticut
Citation: For exceptionally meritorious service and extraordinary heroism while attached to Squadron C, 1st Marine Aviation Force, in France. 2d Lt. Talbot participated in numerous air raids into enemy territory. On 8 October 1918, while on such a raid, he was attacked by 9 enemy scouts, and in the fight that followed shot down an enemy plane. Also, on 14 October 1918, while on a raid over Pittham, Belgium, 2d Lt. Talbot and another plane became detached from the formation on account of motor trouble and were attacked by 12 enemy scouts. During the severe fight that followed, his plane shot down 1 of the enemy scouts. His observer was shot through the elbow and his gun jammed. 2d Lt. Talbot maneuvered to gain time for his observer to clear the jam with one hand, and then returned to the fight. The observer fought until shot twice, once in the stomach and once in the hip and then collapsed, 2d Lt. Talbot attacked the nearest enemy scout with his front guns and shot him down. With his observer unconscious and his motor failing, he dived to escape the balance of the enemy and crossed the German trenches at an altitude of 50 feet, landing at the nearest hospital to leave his observer, and then returning to his aerodrome.

TALLEY, EDWARD R.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company L, 117th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Ponchaux, France, 7 October 1918
• Entered service at: Russellville, Tenn.
• G.O. No.: 50, W.D., 1919
Citation: Undeterred by seeing several comrades killed in attempting to put a hostile machinegun nest out of action, Sgt. Talley attacked the position single-handed. Armed only with a rifle, he rushed the nest in the face of intense enemy fire, killed or wounded at least 6 of the crew, and silenced the gun. When the enemy attempted to bring forward another gun and ammunition he drove them back by effective fire from his rifle.

THOMPSON, JOSEPH H.
• Rank and organization: Major, U.S. Army, 110th Infantry, 28th Division
• Place and date: Near Apremont, France, 1 October 1918
• Entered service at: Beaver Falls, Pa.
• G.O. No.: 21, W.D., 1925
Citation: Counterattacked by 2 regiments of the enemy, Maj. Thompson encouraged his battalion in the front line of constantly braving the hazardous fire of machineguns and artillery. His courage was mainly responsible for the heavy repulse of the enemy. Later in the action, when the advance of his assaulting companies was held up by fire from a hostile machinegun nest and all but 1 of the 6 assaulting tanks were disabled, Maj. Thompson, with great gallantry and coolness, rushed forward on foot 3 separate times in advance of the assaulting line, under heavy machinegun and antitank-gun fire, and led the 1 remaining tank to within a few yards of the enemy machinegun nest, which succeeded in reducing it, thereby making it possible for the infantry to advance.

TURNER, HAROLD L.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company F, 142d Infantry, 36th Division
• Place and date: Near St. Etienne, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Seminole, Okla.
• G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919
Citation: After his platoon had started the attack Cpl. Turner assisted in organizing a platoon consisting of the battalion scouts, runners, and a detachment of Signal Corps. As second in command of this platoon he fearlessly led them forward through heavy enemy fire, continually encouraging the men. Later he encountered deadly machinegun fire which reduced the strength of his command to but 4 men, and these were obliged to take shelter. The enemy machinegun emplacement, 25 yards distant, kept up a continual fire from 4 machineguns. After the fire had shifted momentarily, Cpl. Turner rushed forward with fixed bayonet and charged the position alone capturing the strong point with a complement of 50 Germans and 1 machineguns. His remarkable display of courage and fearlessness was instrumental in destroying the strong point, the fire from which had blocked the advance of his company.

*TURNER, WILLIAM B.
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army 105th Infantry, 27th Division
• Place and date: Near Ronssoy, France, 27 September 1918
• Entered service at: Garden City, N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 81, W.D., 1919
Citation: He led a small group of men to the attack, under terrific artillery and machinegun fire, after they had become separated from the rest of the company in the darkness. Single-handed he rushed an enemy machinegun which had suddenly opened fire on his group and killed the crew with his pistol. He then pressed forward to another machinegun post 25 yards away and had killed 1 gunner himself by the time the remainder of his detachment arrived and put the gun out of action. With the utmost bravery he continued to lead his men over 3 lines of hostile trenches, cleaning up each one as they advanced, regardless of the fact that he had been wounded 3 times, and killed several of the enemy in hand-to-hand encounters. After his pistol ammunition was exhausted, this gallant officer seized the rifle of a dead soldier, bayoneted several members of a machinegun crew, and shot the other. Upon reaching the fourth-line trench, which was his objective, 1st Lt. Turner captured it with the 9 men remaining in his group and resisted a hostile counterattack until he was finally surrounded and killed.

UPTON, FRANK MONROE
• Rank and organization: Quartermaster, U.S. Navy
• Accredited to: Colorado
• G.O. No.: 403, 1918
Citation: For extraordinary heroism following internal explosion of the Florence H, on 17 April 1918. The sea in the vicinity of wreckage was covered by a mass of boxes of smokeless powder, which were repeatedly exploding. Frank M. Upton, of the U.S.S. Stewart, plunged overboard to rescue a survivor who was surrounded by powder boxes and too exhausted to help himself. Fully realizing the danger from continual explosion of similar powder boxes in the vicinity, he risked his life to save the life of this man.

VALENTE, MICHAEL
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company D, 107th Infantry, 27th Division
• Place and date: East of Ronssoy, France, 29 September 1918
• Entered service at: Ogdensburg N.Y.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1929
Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action with the enemy during the operations against the Hindenburg line, east of Ronssoy, France, 29 September 1918. Finding the advance of his organization held up by a withering enemy machinegun fire, Pvt. Valente volunteered to go forward. With utter disregard of his own personal danger, accompanied by another soldier, Pvt. Valente rushed forward through an intense machinegun fire directly upon the enemy nest, killing 2 and capturing 5 of the enemy and silencing the gun. Discovering another machinegun nest close by which was pouring a deadly fire on the American forces, preventing their advance, Pvt. Valente and his companion charged upon this strong point, killing the gunner and putting this machinegun out of action. Without hesitation they jumped into the enemy’s trench, killed 2 and captured 16 German soldiers. Pvt. Valente was later wounded and sent to the rear.

VAN IERSEL, LUDOVICUS M. M.
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company M, 9th Infantry, 2d Division
• Place and date: At Mouzon, France, 9 November 1918
• Entered service at: Glen Rock, N.J.
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D., 1919
Citation: While a member of the reconnaissance patrol, sent out at night to ascertain the condition of a damaged bridge, Sgt. Van Iersel volunteered to lead a party across the bridge in the face of heavy machinegun and rifle fire from a range of only 75 yards. Crawling alone along the debris of the ruined bridge he came upon a trap, which gave away and precipitated him into the water. In spite of the swift current he succeeded in swimming across the stream and found a lodging place among the timbers on the opposite bank. Disregarding the enemy fire, he made a careful investigation of the hostile position by which the bridge was defended and then returned to the other bank of the river, reporting this valuable information to the battalion commander.

VILLEPIGUE, JOHN C.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company M, 118th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: At Vaux-Andigny, France, 15 October 1918
• Entered service at. Camden, S.C.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Having been sent out with 2 other soldiers to scout through the village of Vaux-Andigny, he met with strong resistance from enemy machinegun fire, which killed 1 of his men and wounded the other. Continuing his advance without aid 500 yards in advance of his platoon and in the face of machinegun and artillery fire he encountered 4 of the enemy in a dugout, whom he attacked and killed with a handgrenade. Crawling forward to a point 150 yards in advance of his first encounter, he rushed a machinegun nest, killing 4 and capturing 6 of the enemy and taking 2 light machineguns. After being joined by his platoon he was severely wounded in the arm.

WAALER, REIDAR
• Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company A, 105th Machine-Gun Battalion, 27th Division
• Place and date: Near Ronssoy, France, 27 September 1918
• Entered service at: New York, N.Y.
• G.O. No.. 5, W.D., 1920
Citation: In the face of heavy artillery and machinegun fire, he crawled forward to a burning British tank, in which some of the crew were imprisoned, and succeeded in rescuing 2 men. Although the tank was then burning fiercely and contained ammunition which was likely to explode at any time, this soldier immediately returned to the tank and, entering it, made a search for the other occupants, remaining until he satisfied himself that there were no more living men in the tank.

WARD, CALVIN JOHN
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company D, 117th Infantry, 30th Division
• Place and date: Near Estrees, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Morristown, Tenn.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: During an advance, Pvt. Ward’s company was held up by a machinegun, which was enfilading the line. Accompanied by a noncommissioned officer, he advanced against this post and succeeded in reducing the nest by killing 3 and capturing 7 of the enemy and their guns.

WEST, CHESTER H.
• Rank and organization: First Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company D, 363d Infantry, 91st Division
• Place and date: Near Bois-de-Cheppy, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: Los Banos, Calif.
• G.O. No.: 34, W.D., 1919
Citation: While making his way through a thick fog with his automatic rifle section, his advance was halted by direct and unusual machinegun fire from 2 guns. Without aid, he at once dashed through the fire and, attacking the nest, killed 2 of the gunners, 1 of whom was an officer. This prompt and decisive hand-to-hand encounter on his part enabled his company to advance farther without the loss of a man.

WHITTLESEY, CHARLES W.
• Rank and organization: Major, U.S. Army, 308th Infantry, 77th Division
• Place and date: Northeast of Binarville, in the forest of Argonne France, 2-7 October 1918
• Entered service at: Pittsfield, Mass.
• G.O. No.: 118, W.D., 1918
Citation: Although cut off for 5 days from the remainder of his division, Maj. Whittlesey maintained his position, which he had reached under orders received for an advance, and held his command, consisting originally of 46 officers and men of the 308th Infantry and of Company K of the 307th Infantry, together in the face of superior numbers of the enemy during the 5 days. Maj. Whittlesey and his command were thus cut off, and no rations or other supplies reached him, in spite of determined efforts which were made by his division. On the 4th day Maj. Whittlesey received from the enemy a written proposition to surrender, which he treated with contempt, although he was at the time out of rations and had suffered a loss of about 50 percent in killed and wounded of his command and was surrounded by the enemy.

*WICKERSHAM, J. HUNTER
• Rank and organization: Second Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 353d Infantry, 89th Division
• Place and date. Near Limey, France, 12 September 1918
• Entered service at: Denver, Colo.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: Advancing with his platoon during the St. Mihiel offensive, he was severely wounded in 4 places by the bursting of a high-explosive shell. Before receiving any aid for himself he dressed the wounds of his orderly, who was wounded at the same time. He then ordered and accompanied the further advance of his platoon, although weakened by the loss of blood. His right hand and arm being disabled by wounds, he continued to fire his revolver with his left hand until, exhausted by loss of blood, he fell and died from his wounds before aid could be administered.

*WOLD, NELS
• Rank and organization: Private, U.S. Army, Company I, 138th Infantry, 35th Division
• Place and date: Near Cheppy, France, 26 September 1918
• Entered service at: Minnewaukan, N. Dak.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: He rendered most gallant service in aiding the advance of his company, which had been held up by machinegun nests, advancing, with 1 other soldier, and silencing the guns, bringing with him, upon his return, 11 prisoners. Later the same day he jumped from a trench and rescued a comrade who was about to be shot by a German officer, killing the officer during the exploit. His actions were entirely voluntary, and it was while attempting to rush a 5th machinegun nest that he was killed. The advance of his company was mainly due to his great courage and devotion to duty.

WOODFILL, SAMUEL
• Rank and organization: First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, 60th Infantry, 5th Division
• Place and date: At Cunel, France, 12 October 1918
• Entered service at: Bryantsburg, Ind.
• G.O. No.: 16, W.D., 1919
Citation: While he was leading his company against the enemy, his line came under heavy machinegun fire, which threatened to hold up the advance. Followed by 2 soldiers at 25 yards, this officer went out ahead of his first line toward a machinegun nest and worked his way around its flank, leaving the 2 soldiers in front. When he got within 10 yards of the gun it ceased firing, and 4 of the enemy appeared, 3 of whom were shot by 1st Lt. Woodfill. The fourth, an officer, rushed at 1st Lt. Woodfill, who attempted to club the officer with his rifle. After a hand-to-hand struggle, 1st Lt. Woodfill killed the officer with his pistol. His company thereupon continued to advance, until shortly afterwards another machinegun nest was encountered. Calling on his men to follow, 1st Lt. Woodfill rushed ahead of his line in the face of heavy fire from the nest, and when several of the enemy appeared above the nest he shot them, capturing 3 other members of the crew and silencing the gun. A few minutes later this officer for the third time demonstrated conspicuous daring by charging another machinegun position, killing 5 men in one machinegun pit with his rifle. He then drew his revolver and started to jump into the pit, when 2 other gunners only a few yards away turned their gun on him. Failing to kill them with his revolver, he grabbed a pick lying nearby and killed both of them. Inspired by the exceptional courage displayed by this officer, his men pressed on to their objective under severe shell and machinegun fire.

YORK, ALVIN C.
• Rank and organization: Corporal, U.S. Army, Company G, 328th Infantry, 82d Division
• Place and date: Near Chatel-Chehery, France, 8 October 1918
• Entered service at: Pall Mall, Tenn.
• G.O. No.: 59, W.D., 1919
Citation: After his platoon had suffered heavy casualties and 3 other noncommissioned officers had become casualties, Cpl. York assumed command. Fearlessly leading 7 men, he charged with great daring a machinegun nest which was pouring deadly and incessant fire upon his platoon. In this heroic feat the machinegun nest was taken, together with 4 officers and 128 men and several guns.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE

Remember the names of all those who guarded your freedoms: Eddy Toorall

SOURCE:U.S. ARMY CENTER OF MILITARY HISTORY

Eleventh Hour Eleventh Day Eleventh Month

At the 11th hour in the 11th day of the 11th month of the year One thousand Nine hundred and Eighteen of the Common Era; the guns of the greatest slaughter of humanity by force of arms up until that time, went silent. Only the horrible memories of a tragedy which began in the late summer of 1914 remained, along with the emptiness left behind of the dead, and the suffering of the wounded.

What had begun as a misguided attempt to garner territory and prestige by the “Nobile elite” of Europe, who in the detachments from the reality of not only the plight of their own peoples but of the stability of the world in general, initiated a wholesale slaughter of epic proportions, consuming generations of the youth of the world. Producing economic disasters and global chaos, tens of millions died, hundreds of million injured, empires fell; and the misery inflicted upon the world would eventually produce an even greater devastating war.

One Hundred years have passed, seemingly an overly long amount of time, and true all that had participated in that great conflagration are now passed, yet we cannot forget, we dare not forget that unbelievable nightmare. We should never forget those that faced that challenge and gave their all, or those that suffered countless years after with agonizing wounds both physical and mental.

We must remember that the suffering was not confined to the individuals who endured the rigors of that “Great War” but also the families they either left behind or who bore witness to their suffering.

The American Expeditionary Forces arrived in France in June 1917, they would eventually total more than Two Million personnel culminating in 40 combat divisions with support. Of that number over 255, 000 would become casualties of war, with 52,997 battle deaths and over 50,000 non-battle.

Now a Hundred years later we can do little more than pay homage to dead, speak their name so that they shall always be remembered. Adorn their final place of rest and honor with bits of cloth the colors of which they so gallantly marched, fought and died to preserve.

AEF Strength (30 November 1918):
Total: 1,929,760 (80,004 officers; 1,849,756 enlisted)
Logistics Organization: Services of Supply (SOS)
Location: Tours, France
Strength (11 November 1918):
Officers: 30,593
Nurses: 5,586
Enlisted: 602,910
Total: 644,540

Casualties: AEF Casualties:
Killed in action: 37,171 (1,648 officers; 35,523 enlisted)
Died of wounds: 12,934 (559 officers; 12,375 enlisted)
Wounds not mortal: 193,602 (6,904 officers; 186,698 enlisted)
Total casualties: 243,707 (9,111 officers; 234,596 enlisted)
Troops at Sea: Killed in action:
370 (7 officers; 363 enlisted)
Dies of wounds: 0
Wounds not mortal: 5 (1 officer; 4 enlisted)
Total casualties: 375 (8 officers; 367 enlisted)
U.S. Army Non-Battle Deaths: 55,868

American Expeditionary Forces, Siberia:
Commander: Maj. Gen. William S. Graves
Approximate Size of Force: 8,400 (300 officers; 8,100 enlisted)
Length of Campaign: July 1918–April 1920
Purpose: To aid Russian and Czech-Slovak forces and protect war materiel
American Expeditionary Forces, North Russia:
Commander: Col. George E. Stewart (September 1918–April 1919) Brig. Gen. Wilds P. Richardson (April–August 1919) Approximate Size of Force: 4,500 (150 officers; 4,350 enlisted) Length of Campaign: September 1918–August 1919 Purpose: To support Czech-Slovak forces in Russia and protect war materiel
North Russia & Siberia:
Killed in action: 27 (1 officer; 26 enlisted) Died of wounds: 8 (0 officers; 8 enlisted)
Wounds not mortal: 52 (4 officers; 48 enlisted)
Total casualties: 87 (5 officers; 82 enlisted)

SOURCE: United States Army Center of Military History

I leave only this small token of my thanks and gratitude for their deeds with this poem from one of those heroes who fell for my freedoms. (E. T.)

Rouge Bouquet
There is a new-made grave to-day,
Built by never a spade nor pick
Yet covered with earth ten metres thick.
There lie many fighting men,
Dead in their youthful prime,
Never to laugh nor love again
Nor taste the Summertime.

For Death came flying through the air
And stopped his flight at the dugout stair,
Touched his prey and left them there,
Clay to clay.
He hid their bodies stealthily
In the soil of the land they fought to free
And fled away.
Now over the grave abrupt and clear
Three volleys ring;
And perhaps their brave young spirits hear
The bugle sing:
“Go to sleep!
Go to sleep!”

Slumber well where the shell screamed and fell.
Let your rifles rest on the muddy floor,
You will not need them anymore.
Danger’s past;
Now at last,
Go to sleep!”

There is on earth no worthier grave
To hold the bodies of the brave
Than this place of pain and pride
Where they nobly fought and nobly died.
Never fear but in the skies
Saints and angels stand
Smiling with their holy eyes
On this new-come band.

St. Michael’s sword darts through the air
And touches the aureole on his hair
As he sees them stand saluting there,
His stalwart sons; And Patrick, Brigid, Columkill
Rejoice that in veins of warriors still
The Gael’s blood runs.
And up to Heaven’s doorway floats,
From the wood called Rouge Bouquet
A delicate cloud of bugle notes
That softly say: “Farewell! Farewell!

Comrades true, born anew, peace to you!
Your souls shall be where the heroes are
And your memory shine like the morning-star.
Brave and dear,
Shield us here.
Farewell!”
Author: Sargent Joyce Kilmer “Fighting 69th” Infantry Regiment U.S. Army (W.W. I-France) Killed in Action 30 July 1918; Second Battle of the Marne

IN FLANDERS FIELDS
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
AUTHOR: LT. Colonel John McCrea: Canadian Expeditionary Forces (W.W. I-France)

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

CONTRIBUTOR: Eddy Toorall

American Revolution: Continental Marines; Happy Birthday

November 10 is celebrated as the birthday of the United States Marine Corps at post and stations around the globe. Wherever possible–and sometimes when it would seem impossible– there is a birthday cake. November 10 is celebrated because on that date in 1775 the Continental Congress passed the following resolution: Resolved, That two battalions of marines be raised, consisting of one Colonel, two Lieutenant Colonels, two Majors and other officers as usual in other regiments; that they consist of an equal number of privates with other battalions; that particular care be taken that no persons appointed to offices, or installed into said Battalions, but such as are good seamen, or so acquainted with maritime affairs as to be able to serve to advantage by sea when required; that they be enlisted and commissioned to serve for and during the present war between Great Britain and the colonies, unless dismissed by order of Congress; that they be distinguished by the name of the first and second battalions of American Marines.

The resolution was written by a special five-man Congressional Committee that had been established only a week before and, well supplied with Jamaican rum, met evenings in a public house  in Philadelphia. The committee had not intended to create a separate unit of marines but to transfer soldiers from Washington’s Continental Army. When the general objected (the first but not the last case of inter-service rivalry between American soldiers and Marines), Congress agreed to recruit Marines independently.

The wording of the resolution of November 10 indicates the founding fathers had ales than crystal-clear idea of what marines were supposed to be. The battalions are ordered to accept only ‘ such as are good seamen, or so acquainted with maritime affairs as to be able to serve to advantage by sea when required.” But marines are not specialized sailors; they are totally different breed of fighter. In fact, the British Marines, on whom the American establishment is based, were specificity exempt from sea duties. Since 1775, the role of the American Marines has evolved in various forms as their countries’ needs have demanded; but they have not served as sailors.  The committee’s language hung over the original intention to use as marines those of Washington’s soldiers who had some sea experience.

In 1775, the British Marines were only 111 years old. But at least as far back as a thousand years before the birth of Christ, men on ships of war were divided into rowers and fighters (sailors and marines). Marines in the fleet of Ramses III helped keep hordes of invaders out of Egypt. The Greek ships that attacked Troy and of which Homer sang carried marines who fought on a forward deck. At the battle of Salamis in 480 B.C.E., when Greek city states defeated the mighty Persia, marines (epibatai) from Athens and Corinth played a vital part in a naval battle that changed history.

When Rome ruled the seas, her men-of-war carried a powerful force of marines ( milites classici). These warriors helped defeat the naval power of Carthage in 260 B.C.E. At the crucial battle of Mylae off Sicily, the Romans had 120 marines aboard each of their ships to control the rowers and board enemy ships. The victory began the Roman navy’s mastery of the Mediterranean Sea.

As the historian of ancient sea warfare, Lionel Casson, says of those early marines, “Without such fighters to rake the opponent’s deck during the approach or to stand to repel boarders after the impact [of ramming], the attacked vessel’s marines could grapple and board and stand a fair chance of taking over the attacker.”

The British Marines were originally ordered and raised by King Charles II on October 28, 1664, during the Second Dutch war, which turned New Amsterdam in to New York. They were called the Admiral’s Regiment and reputedly were the first unit to be armed with flintlocks rather than muskets. A detachment of the regiment, dressed in yellow coats and red breeches, was sent to Virginia to keep the peace in 1676. A few of them stayed and became colonist. BY 1741, three regiments of Marines were ordered raised in the American colonies under Colonel Alexander Spotswood of Virginia. One regiment, commanded by Virginia’s lieutenant governor, Colonel William Gooch–and known as Gooch’s Marines–fought in the Caribbean against Spain. British Marines helped capture the French base of Louisburg on Cape Breton Island in 1745, and they aided James Wolfe’s capture of Quebec in 1759. Wolfe himself was first commissioned in the Marines, as was John Churchill, who became the Duke of Marlborough.

On the evening of April 19, 1775, British Marines participated in the first shots heard around the world. Major John Pitcairn, who led the advance guard sent to seize the colonist’s military stores at Concord, was a Marine. It was his contingent that killed Minute Men on the snow-covered Lexington green. After the skirmish later that morning at Concord, the 1st British Marine Battalion formed a hollow square at Lexington to give a breathing spell to the redcoats returning from Concord under a hail of Colonial bullets.

Two months later the 1st British Marine Battalion charged on the left flank in the assault against the hastily constructed American entrenchments on Breed’s Hill [Bunker Hill]. Twice the British moved up the hill and were thrown back. Major Pitcairn, at the head of his men, was twice wounded. Major General Gage, the British commander in America, ordered a third assault. The story is told that when a British army battalion in this third attack was held up by heavy Colonial fire, it was enjoined to “Break, then and let the Marines pass through you.”

The Americans on the hilltop finally ran out of gunpowder and, after fighting with musket butts and stones, fled from the British bayonets. The British Marines were the first to penetrate the American lines. Major Pitcairn was killed; but in this “Battle of Bunker Hill,” for the first time, Colonials had stood up to a frontal assault by British Regulars.

British Marines fought in many sea battles and coastal raids during the Revolution. They helped throw Arnold and the Americans back from Quebec in the spring of 1776. They fought Americans hand-to-hand to prevent them from recapturing Savannah in October 1779. The following spring they helped seize Fort Moultrie in Charleston Harbor. And Marines were in the force which Cornwallis surrendered at Yorktown October 19, 1781. (At Yorktown French Marines helped blockade Colonel Balastre Tarleton, who was holding open an escape route for Cornwallis)

In 1802, George III declared British Marines to be “The Royal Marines.” Admiral Horatio Nelson, England’s greatest sea fighter, wrote that “ Every fleet should have a perfect battalion of Marines and, commanded by experienced officers, they would be prepared to make a serious impression on the enemy’s coast.”

The Royal and American Marines began as enemies, but over the years after the War of 1812 they became comrades. They were blooded to gather in the Boxer Rebellion, World War Two and Korea. They share the same traditions. The Royal Marines wear a badge showing the eastern hemisphere of the globe; United States Marines wear one with the western Hemisphere.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: U.S. Marine Corps Story; BY: J. Robert Moskin
CONTRIBUTOR: Cade Pommeraan

American Revolution: Major Events 1763-1774

Listed are major events leading up to the rebellion of the American colonist against the British Crown. Giving cause for their declaring independence.                                                                                                                                           1763

10 February: Treaty of Paris, ending Seven Years’ War signed, in which France ceded mainland North American possessions east of Mississippi River, and Spain ceded Florida, to Great Britain. France and Spain, smarting in defeat, were to find their opportunity for revenge in American Revolution. Coincidentally with signing of treaty, the British Government proposed to maintain 15 regiments in America and to collect at least part of cost of maintaining them from the colonies, thus laying the basis for the agitation and debate over constitutional issues that was eventually to lead the 13 coastal colonies from New England to Georgia to armed rebellion. 

16 November: General Thomas Gage arrived in New York City to assume his new assignment as Commander-in-Chief of British Army in America. 

                                                                               1764

 5 April: In Revenue Act, British Parliament asserted its authority to levy duties on colonial trade to raise revenue in order to defray expenses of defending and securing British Empire.

                                                                            1765

 22 March: Parliament passed Stamp Act to be effective 1 November 1765, placing tax on printed matter and legal documents with objective of raising part of costs of maintaining British troops in American colonies.

 7-25 October: Stamp Act Congress, meeting in New York City, to which nine colonies sent delegates, formulated Declaration of Rights and Grievances which denied Parliament’s right to tax colonies. It also gave impetus to informal agreements not to import British goods until act was repealed, beginnings of nonimportation as measure of economic coercion.

                                                                                 1766

 18 March: Stamp Act repealed, but on same day Parliament passed Declaratory Act asserting its authority to make laws binding on American colonies “in all cases whatsoever.” 

                                                                                 1767

 29 June: King George III approved Townshend Revenue Act imposing duties on selected colonial imports to obtain revenue to help defray costs of military defense and provide independent source of income for paying royal officials. Americans again countered with nonimportation. 

                                                                            1768

 1 October: British troops arrived in Boston, Massachusetts, to enforce customs laws. 

                                                                       1769

 16 May: Virginia Resolves drafted by George Mason and introduced in House of Burgesses by George Washington asserted that only governor and colony’s own legislature had right to levy taxes in Virginia, and condemned Parliamentary proposal to send Americans to England for trial. 

                                                                      1770

 19 January: “Battle” of Golden Hill in New York City followed several days of excitement after cutting down of Liberty Pole by British troops, and was outgrowth of long conflict over British attempts to enforce quartering provisions of Mutiny Act of 5 May 1765. In this scuffle British troops attacking Sons of Liberty party with bayonets wounded several seriously.

 5 March: Boston “Massacre” climaxed rioting in front of customs house, with British guards firing into mob killing five and wounding six others. Whatever the provocation, and misrepresentation of this incident in patriot propaganda, it was significant action in stirring anti-British feeling and leading toward armed rebellion and independence.

 12 April: Parliament repealed all Townshend Revenue Act duties except tax on tea.

 9 June: British armed revenue schooner Gaspee) having run aground in Narragansett Bay seven miles below Providence, Rhode Island, was attacked and burned by a party of local patriots.

 2 November: First Committee of Correspondence was established in Boston, Massachusetts; other colonies followed this example, and these committees served as vehicles to link patriot anti-British agitation and to organize public opinion against British actions.

                                                                  1773

 10 May: Parliament passed Tea Act which, although it retained tea duty from Townshend Act, made it possible for British East India Company to undersell smuggled tea in American colonies if it could be sold. Tea was subsequently turned back or impounded in New York City, Philadelphia, and Charleston, burned in Annapolis, and dumped in Boston.

 16 December: Boston Tea Party occurred when a group organized by Samuel Adams boarded tea ships in Boston harbor and threw overboard 342 tea chests valued at $90,000. This action led to British Coercive Acts of 1774, termed by Americans the Intolerable Acts.

                                                   1774

 31 March: Parliament passed Boston Port Bill, first of Coercive Acts, ordering closing of port on 1 June 1774 until tea destroyed in “Tea Party” was paid for. 

17 May: General Gage landed in Boston to assume duties as Massachusetts Governor in addition to those as British Army Commander-in-Chief. 

20 May: Massachusetts Government Act, another of Coercive Acts, virtually annulled colonial charter and gave governor control of local town meetings. 

1 June: Boston harbor was closed to trade. 

2 June: Parliament passed Quartering Act at request of General Gage, specifically requiring colonists to furnish barracks and supplies to British troops when needed. Colonists viewed this law as another of Intolerable Acts.

 22 June: George III approved Quebec Act, granting religious toleration to French Canadians and extending Canada’s boundaries in west to Ohio River. Most inhabitants of 13 coastal colonies found both provisions highly objectionable, and thus construed this rather enlightened action to be one of Intolerable Acts.

 1 September: General Gage seized Massachusetts stock of powder at Charlestown, across Charles River from Boston, Massachusetts. 

5 September: First Continental Congress, with representatives from 12 colonies, met in Carpenter’s Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

14 September: First Continental Congress approved Suffolk Resolve, drafted by convention meeting in Suffolk County, Massachusetts, which declared so-called Intolerable Acts to be unconstitutional, urged Massachusetts to set up a government independent of Crown until these acts were repealed, advised people to arm, and recommended economic sanctions against Great Britain. 

5 October: Massachusetts Assembly met in Salem and two days later adjourned to Concord where its members organized as Provincial Congress. This extralegal body with John Hancock as president thereafter governed Massachusetts outside of Boston. In due course other colonies established similar provincial congresses.

 14 October: First Continental Congress adopted Declaration of Rights and Grievances summarizing colonial arguments of protest and denying Parliament’s jurisdiction over American colonies except for regulation of colonial commerce and strictly imperial affairs.

 19 October: At Annapolis, Maryland, owner of ship Peggy Stewart, arriving with tea aboard on which tax had been paid, was forced to burn his own vessel to avert mob action toward same end.

 20 October: First Continental Congress approved Continental Association, economic boycott of Great Britain to stop in due course import, export, and consumption of British goods, an action that led to 90 percent decline in British imports by spring 1775. By that time, committees organized for enforcement had become de facto local governments.

 26 October: First Continental Congress adjourned.

 26 October: Massachusetts Provincial Congress directed that militia-men of colony be reorganized so tl).at the most able-bodied third would be in separate companies of Minute men.

 9-10 December: Patriots seized ordinance at Newport, Rhode Island, and carried it to Providence.

 14 December: Patriots in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, seized 100 barrels of powder and some ordinance from Castle William and Mary. (Similar actions followed in other colonies.)

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: The war of the American Revolution: BY: Robert W. Coakley & Stetson Conn (United States Army Center of Military History)

CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson

American Revolution: Winning Independence: 1777-1783 ( Part 3)

Nadir of the American Cause:  In the summer of 1780 the American cause seemed to be at as low an ebb as it had been after the New York campaign in 1776 or after the defeats at Ticonderoga and Brandywine in 1777. Defeat in the south was not the only discouraging aspect of patriot affairs. In the north a creeping paralysis had set in as the patriotic enthusiasm of the early war years waned. The Continental currency had virtually depreciated out of existence, and Congress was impotent to pay the soldiers or purchase supplies. At Morristown, New Jersey, in the winter of 1779-8O the army suffered worse hardships than at Valley Forge. Congress could do little but attempt to shift its responsibilities onto the states, giving each the task of providing clothing for its own troops and furnishing certain quotas of specific supplies for the entire Army. The system of “specific supplies” worked not at all. Not only were the states laggard in furnishing supplies, but when they did it was seldom at the time or place they were needed. This breakdown in the supply system was more than even General Greene, as Quartermaster General, could cope with, and in early 1780, under heavy criticism in Congress, he resigned his position.

Under such difficulties, Washington had to struggle to hold even a small Army together. Recruiting of Continentals, difficult to begin with, became almost impossible when the troops could neither be paid nor supplied adequately and had to suffer such winters as those at Morristown. Enlistments and drafts from the militia in 1780 produced not quite half as many men for one year’s service as had enlisted in 1775 for three years or the duration. While recruiting lagged, morale among those men who had enlisted for the longer terms naturally fell. Mutinies in 1780 and 1781 were suppressed only by measures of great severity.

Germain could write confidently to Clinton: “so very contemptible is the rebel force now … that no resistance . . . is to be apprehended that can materially obstruct . . . the speedy suppression of the rebellion . . . the American levies in the King’s service are more in number than the whole of the enlisted troops in the service of the Congress.” The French were unhappy. In the summer of 1780 they occupied the vacated British base at Newport, moving in a naval squadron and 4,000 troops under the command of Lieutenant General the Comte de Rochambeau. Rochambeau immediately warned his government: “Send us troops, ships and money, but do not count on these people nor on their resources, they have neither money nor credit, their forces exist only momentarily, and when they are about to be attacked in their own homes they assemble . . . to defend themselves.” Another French commander thought only one highly placed American traitor was needed to decide the campaign.

Clinton had, in fact, already found his “highly placed traitor” in Benedict Arnold, the hero of the march to Quebec, the naval battle on the lakes, Stanwix, and Saratoga. “Money is this man’s God,” one of his enemies had said of Arnold earlier, and evidently he was correct. Lucrative rewards promised by the British led to Arnold’s treason, though he evidently resented the slights Congress had dealt him, and he justified his act by claiming that the Americans were now fighting for the interests of Catholic France and not their own. Arnold wangled an appointment as commander at West Point and then entered into a plot to deliver this key post to the British. Washington discovered the plot on September 21, 1780, just in time to foil it, though Arnold himself escaped to become a British brigadier.

Arnold’s treason in September 1780 marked the nadir of the patriot cause. In the closing months of 1780, the Americans somehow put together the ingredients for a final and decisive burst of energy in 1781. Congress persuaded Robert Morris, a wealthy Philadelphia merchant, to accept a post as Superintendent of Finance, and Colonel Timothy Pickering, an able administrator, to replace Greene as Quartermaster General. Greene, as Washington’s choice, was then named to succeed Gates in command of the Southern Army. General Lincoln, exchanged after Charleston, was appointed Secretary at War and the old board was abolished. Morris took over many of the functions previously performed by unwieldy committees. Working closely with Pickering, he abandoned the old paper money entirely and introduced a new policy of supplying the army by private contracts, using his personal credit as eventual guarantee for payment in gold or silver. It-was an expedient but, for a time at least, it worked.

Greene’s Southern Campaign: It was the frontier militia assembling “when they were about to be attacked in their own homes” who struck the blow that actually marked the turning point in the south. Late in 1780, with Clinton’s reluctant consent, Cornwallis set out on the invasion of North Carolina. He sent Major Patrick Ferguson, who had successfully organized the Tories in the upcountry of South Carolina, to move north simultaneously with his “American Volunteers,” spread the Tory gospel in the North Carolina back country, and join the main army at Charlotte with a maximum number of recruits. Ferguson’s advance northward alarmed the “ova-mountain men” in western North Carolina, southwest Virginia, and what is now east Tennessee. A picked force of mounted militia riflemen gathered on the Catawba River in western North Carolina, set out to find Ferguson, and brought him to bay at King’s Mountain near the border of the two Carolinas on October 7. In a battle of patriot against Tory (Ferguson was the only British soldier present), the patriots’ triumph was complete. Ferguson himself was killed and few of his command escaped death or capture. Some got the same “quarter” Tarleton had given Buford’s men at the Waxhaws.

King’s Mountain was as fatal to Cornwallis’ plans as Bennington had been to those of Burgoyne. The North Carolina Tories, cowed by the fate of their compatriots, gave him lime support. The British commander on October In 1780, began a wretched retreat in the rain back to Winnsboro, South Carolina, with militia harassing his progress. Clinton was forced to divert an expedition of 2,500 men sent to establish a base in Virginia to reinforce Cornwallis.

The frontier militia had turned the tide, but having done so, they returned to their homes. To keep it moving against the British was the task of the new commander, General Greene. When Greene arrived at Charlotte, North Carolina, early in December 1780, he found a command that consisted of 1,500 men fit for duty, only 949 of them Continentals. The army lacked clothing and provisions and had little systematic means of procuring them. Greene decided that he must not engage Cornwallis’ army in battle until he had built up his strength, that he must instead pursue delaying tactics to wear down his stronger opponent. The first thing he did was to take the unorthodox step of dividing his army in the face of a superior force, moving part under his personal command to Cheraw Hill, and sending the rest undo Brigadier General Daniel Morgan west across the Catawba over 100 miles away. It was an intentional violation of the principle of mass. Greene wrote: I am well satisfied with the movement….It makes the most of my inferior force, for it compels my adversary to divide his, and holds him in doubt as to his own line of conduct. He cannot leave Morgan behind him to come at me, or his posts at Ninety-Six and Augusta would be exposed. And he cannot chase Morgan far, or prosecute his views upon Virginia, while I am here with the whole country open before me. I am as near to Charleston as he is, and as near Hillsborough as I was at Charlotte; so that I am in no danger of being cut off from my reinforcements.

Left unsaid was the fact that divided forces could live off the land much easier than one large force and constitute two rallying points for local militia instead of one Greene was, in effect, sacrificing mass to enhance maneuver.

Cornwallis, an aggressive commander, had determined to gamble everything on a renewed invasion of North Carolina. Ignoring Clinton’s warnings, he depleted his Charleston base by bringing almost all his supplies forward. In the face of Greene’s dispositions, Cornwallis divided his army into not two but three parts. He sent a holding force to Camden to contain Green, directed Tarleton with a fast-moving contingent of 1,100 infantry and cavalry to find and crush Morgan, and with the remainder of his army moved cautiously up into North Carolina to cut off any of Morgan’s force that escaped Tarleton.

Tarleton caught up with Morgan on January 17, 1781, west of King’s Mountain at a place called the Cowpens, an open, sparsely forested area six miles from the Broad River. Morgan chose this site to make his stand less by design than necessity, for he had intended to get across the Broad. Nevertheless, on ground seemingly better suited to the action of Regulars, he achieved a little tactical masterpiece, making the most effective use of his heterogeneous force, numerically equal to that of Tarleton but composed of three-fourths militia. Selecting a hill as the center of his position, he placed his Continental infantry on it, deliberately leaving his flanks open. Well out in front of the main line he posted militia riflemen in two lines, instructing the first line to fire two volleys and then fall back on the second, the combined line to fire until the British pressed them, then to fall back to the rear of the Continentals and re-form as a reserve. Behind the hill he placed Lieutenant Colonel William Washington’s cavalry detachment, ready to charge the attacking enemy at the critical moment. Every man in the ranks was informed of the plan of battle and the part he was expected to play in it.

On finding Morgan, Tarleton ordered an immediate attack. His men moved forward in regular formation, were momentarily checked by the militia rifles, but, taking the retreat of the first two lines to be the beginning of a rout, rushed headlong into the steady fire of the Continentals on the hill. When the British were well advanced, the American cavalry struck them on the right flank and the militia, having re-formed, charged out from behind the hill to hit the British left. Caught in a clever double envelopment, the British surrendered after suffering heavy losses. Tarleton managed to escape with only a small force of cavalry he had held in reserve. It was on a small scale, and with certain significant differences, a repetition of the classic double envelopment of the Romans by a Carthaginian army under Hannibal at Cannae in 216 B.C., an event of which Morgan, no reader of books, probably had not the foggiest notion.

Having struck his fatal blow against Tarleton, Morgan still had to move fast to escape Cornwallis. Covering 100 miles and crossing two rivers in five days, he rejoined Greene early in February. Cornwallis by now was too heavily committed to the campaign in North Carolina to withdraw. Hoping to match the swift movement of the Americans, he destroyed all his superfluous supplies, baggage, and wagons and set forth in pursuit of Greene’s army. The American general retreated, through North Carolina, up into southern Virginia, then back into North Carolina again, keeping just far enough in front of his adversary to avoid battle with Cornwallis’ superior force. Finally on March 15, 1781, at Guilford Court House in North Carolina, on ground he had himself chosen, Greene halted and gave battle. By this time he had collected 1,500 Continentals and 3,000 militia to the 1,900 Regulars the British could muster. The British held the field after a hard-fought battle, but suffered casualties of about one-fourth of the force engaged. It was, like Bunker Hill, a Pyrrhic victory. His ranks depleted and his supplies exhausted, Cornwallis withdrew to Wilmington on the coast, and then decided to move northward to join the British forces General Clinton had sent to Virginia.

Greene, his army in better condition than six months earlier, pushed quickly into South Carolina to reduce the British posts in the interior. He fought two battles at Hobkirk’s Hill on April 25, and at Eutaw Springs on September 8–losing both but with approximately the same results as at Guilford Court House. One by one the British interior posts fell to Greene’s army, or to militia and partisans. By October 1781 the British had been forced to withdraw to their port strongholds along the coasts Charleston and Savannah. Greene had lost battles, but won a campaign. In so doing, he paved the way for the greater victory to follow at Yorktown.

Yorktown: The Final Act:  As Howe and Burgoyne went their separate ways in 1777, seemingly determined to satisfy only their personal ambitions, so Clinton and Cornwallis in 1781 paved the road to Yorktown by their disagreements and lack of coordination. Clinton was Cornwallis’ superior in this case, but the latter enjoyed the confidence of Germain to an extent that Clinton did not. Clinton, believing that without large reinforcements the British could not operate far from coastal bases, had opposed Cornwallis’ ventures in the interior of the Carolinas, and when Cornwallis came to Virginia he did so without even informing his superior of his intention.

Since 1779 Clinton had sought to paralyze the state of Virginia by conducting raids up its great rivers, arousing the Tories, and establishing a base in the Chesapeake Bay region. He thought this base might eventually be used as a starting point for one arm of a pincers movement against Pennsylvania for which his own idle force in New York would provide the other. A raid conducted in the Hampton Roads area in 1779 was highly successful, but when Clinton sought to follow it up in 1780 the force sent for the purpose had to be diverted to Charleston to bail Cornwallis out after King’s Mountain. Finally in 1781 he got an expedition into Virginia, a contingent of 1,600 under the American traitor, Benedict Arnold. In January Arnold conducted a destructive raid up the James River all the way to Richmond. His presence soon proved to be a magnet drawing forces of both sides to Virginia.

In an effort to trap Arnold, Washington dispatched Lafayette to Virginia with 1,200 of his scarce Continentals and persuaded the French to send a naval squadron from Newport to block Arnold’s escape by sea. The plan went awry when a British fleet drove the French squadron back to Newport and Clinton sent another 600 men to Virginia along with a new commander, Major General William Phillips. Phillips and Arnold continued their devastating raids, which Lafayette was too weak to prevent. Then on May no Cornwallis arrived from Wilmington and took over from Phillips. With additional reinforcements sent by Clinton he was able to field a force of about 7,000 men, approximately a quarter of the British strength in America. Washington sent down an additional reinforcement of 800 Continental, under General Wayne, but even with Virginia militia Lafayette’s force remained greatly outnumbered.

Cornwallis and Clinton were soon working at cross-purposes. Cornwallis proposed to carry out major operations in the interior of Virginia, but Clinton saw as little practical value in this tactic as Cornwallis did in Clinton’s plan to establish a base in Virginia for a pincers movement against Pennsylvania. Cornwallis at first turned to the interior and engaged in a fruitless pursuit of Lafayette north of Richmond. Than, on receiving Clinton’s positive order to return to the coax, establish a base, and return part of his force to New York, Cornwallis moved back down the Virginia peninsula to take up station at Yorktown, a small tobacco port on the York River just off Chesapeake Bay. In the face of

Cornwallis’ insistence that he must keep all his troops with him, Clinton vacillated, reversing his own orders several times and in the end granting Cornwallis’ request. Lafayette and Wayne followed Cornwallis cautiously down the peninsula, lost a skirmish with him at Green Spring near Williamsburg on July 6, and finally took up a position of watchful waiting near Yorktown.

Meanwhile, Washington had been trying to persuade the French to co-operate in a combined land and naval assault on New York in the summer of 1781. Rochambeau brought his 4,000 troops down from Newport in April and placed them under Washington’s command. The prospects were still bleak since the combined Franco-American force numbered but 10,000 against Clinton’s 17,000 in well-fortified positions. Then on August 14 Washington learned that the French Fleet in the West Indies, commanded by Admiral Francois de Grasse, would not come to New York but would arrive in the Chesapeake later in the month and remain there until October 15. He saw immediately that if he could achieve a superior concentration of force on the land side while de Grasse still held the bay he could destroy the British army at Yorktown before Clinton had a chance to relieve it.

The movements that followed illustrate most effectively a successful application of the principles of the offensive, surprise, objective, mass, and maneuver. Even without unified command of Army and Navy forces, Franco-American co-operation this time was excellent. Admiral Louis, Comte de Barras, immediately put out to sea from Newport to join de Grasse. Washington sent orders to Lafayette to contain Cornwallis at Yorktown and then, after making a feint in the direction of New York to deceive Clinton, on August 21 started the major portion of the Franco-American Army on a rapid secret movement to Virginia, via Chesapeake Bay, leaving only 2,000 Americans behind to watch Clinton.

On August 30, while Washington was on the move southward, de Grasse arrived in the Chesapeake with his entire fleet of twenty-four ships of the line and a few days later debarked 3,000 French troops to join Lafayette. Admiral Thomas Graves, the British naval commander in New York, meanwhile had put out to sea in late August with nineteen ships of the line, hoping either to intercept Barras’ squadron or to block de Grasse’s entry into the Chesapeake. He failed to find Barras, and when he arrived off Hampton Roads on September 5 he found de Grasse already in the bay. The French admiral sallied forth to meet Graves and the two fleets fought an indecisive action off the Virginia capes. Yet for all practical purposes the victory lay with the French for, while the fleets maneuvered at sea for days following the battle, Barras’ squadron slipped into the Chesapeake and the French and American troops got past into the James River. Then de Grasse got back into the bay and joined Barras, con

SURRENDER OF CORNWALLIS: fronting Graves with so superior a naval force that he decided to return to New York to refit. When Washington’s army arrived on September 26, the French Fleet was in firm control of the bay, blocking Cornwallis’ sea route of escape. A decisive concentration had been achieved. Counting 3,000 Virginia militia, Washington had a force of about 9,000 Americans and 6,000 French troops with which to conduct the siege. It proceeded in the best traditions of Vauban under the direction of French engineers. Cornwallis obligingly abandoned his forward position on September 30, and on October 6 the first parallel was begun 600 yards from the main British position. Artillery placed along the trench began its destructive work on October 9. By October 11 the zigzag connecting trench had been dug zoo yards forward, and work on the second parallel had begun. Two British redoubts had to be reduced in order to extend the line to the York River. This accomplished, Cornwallis’ only recourse was escape across the river to Gloucester Point where the American line was thinly held. A storm on the night of October 16 frustrated his attempt to do so, leaving him with no hope but relief from New York. Clinton had been considering such relief for days, but he acted too late. On the very day, October 17, that Admiral Graves set sail from New York with a reinforced fleet and 7,000 troops for the relief of Yorktown, Cornwallis began negotiations on terms of surrender. On October 19 his entire army marched out to lay down its arms, the British band playing an old tune called “The World Turned Upside Down.”

So far as active campaigning was concerned, Yorktown ended the war. Both Greene and Washington maintained their armies in position near New York and Charleston for nearly two years more, but the only fighting that occurred was some minor skirmishing in the South. Cornwallis’ defeat led to the overthrow of the British cabinet and the formation of a new government that decided the war in America was lost. With some success, Britain devoted its energies to trying to salvage what it could in the West Indies and in India. The independence for which Americans had fought thus virtually became a reality when Cornwallis’ command marched out of its breached defenses at Yorktown.

The Summing Up: Reasons, Lessons, and Meaning: The American victory in the War of the Revolution was a product of many factors, no one of which can be positively assigned first importance. Washington, looking back on the vicissitudes of eight years, could only explain it as the intervention of “Divine Providence.” American historians in the nineteenth century saw that “Divine Providence” as having been manifested primarily in the character and genius of the modest Commander in Chief himself. Washington’s leadership was clearly one of the principal factors in American success; it seems fair to say that the Revolution could hardly have succeeded without him. Yet in many of the events that led to victory. Bennington, Saratoga, King’s Mountain, and Cowpens, to name but a few of his personal influence was remote.

Today many scholars stress not the astonishment that Washington felt at the victory of a weak and divided confederation of American states over the greatest power of the age, but the practical difficulties the British faced in suppressing the revolt These were indeed great but they do not appear to have been insuperable if one considers military victory alone and not its political consequences. The British forfeited several chances for military victory in 1776-77, and again in 1780 they might have won had they been able to throw 10,000 fresh troops into the American war. American military leaders were more resourceful and imaginative than the British commanders, and they proved quite capable of profiting from British blunders. In addition to Washington, Nathanael Greene, Henry Knox, Daniel Morgan, and Benedict Arnold showed remarkable military abilities, and of the foreign volunteers Steuben and the young Lafayette were outstanding. The resourcefulness of this extraordinary group of leaders was matched by the dedication of the Continental rank and file to the cause. Only men so dedicated could have endured the hardships of the march to Quebec, the crossing of the Delaware, Valley Forge, Morristown, and Greene’s forced marches in the southern campaign. British and Hessian professionals never showed the same spirit; their virtues were exhibited principally in situations where discipline and training counted most.

The militia, the men who fought battles and then went home, also exhibited this spirit on many occasions. The militiamen have been generally maligned as useless by one school of thought, and glorified by another as the true victors in the war. In any balanced view it must be recognized that their contributions were great, though they would have counted for little without a Continental Army to give the American cause that continued sustenance that only a permanent force in being could give it. It was the ubiquity of the militia that made British victories over the Continentals in the field so meaningless. And the success with which the militia did operate derived from the firm political control the patriots had established over the countryside long before the British were in any position to challenge it if the situation that made the British task so difficult in the first place.

For all these American virtues and British difficulties and mistakes, the Americans still required French aid, money, supplies, and in the last phase military forces to win a decisive and clear-cut military victory. Most of the muskets, bayonets, and cannon used by the Continental Army came from France. The French contested the control of the seas that was so vital to the British, and compelled them to divert forces from the American mainland to other areas. The final stroke at Yorktown, though a product of Washington’s strategic conception, was possible only because of the temporary predominance of French naval power off the American coast and the presence of a French army.

French aid was doubly necessary because the American war effort lacked strong national direction. The Revolution showed conclusively the need for a central government with power to harness the nation’s resources for war. It is not surprising that in 1787 nearly all those who had struggled so long and hard as leaders in the Continental Army or in administrative positions under the Congress were to be found in the ranks of the supporters of a new constitution creating such a central government with a strong executive and the power to “raise armies and navies,” call out the militia, and levy taxes directly to support itself.

Strictly military lessons of the Revolution were more equivocal. Tactical innovations were not radical but they did represent a culmination of the trend, which started during the French and Indian War, toward employment of light troops as skirmishers in conjunction with traditional linear formations. By the end of the war both armies were fighting in this fashion. The Americans strove to develop the same proficiency as the British in regular line-of-battle tactics, while the British adapted to the American terrain and tactics by themselves employing skirmishers and fighting when possible from behind cover. Washington was himself a military conservative, and Steuben’s training program was designed to equip American troops to fight in European fashion with modifications to provide for the increased use of light infantry. The guerrilla tactics that characterized many actions, principally those of the militia, were no product of the design of Washington or his leading subordinates but of circumstances over which they had little control. The American rifle, most useful in guerrilla actions or in the hands of skirmishers, played no decisive role in the Revolution. It was of great value in wooded areas, as at Saratoga and King’s Mountain, but for open-field fighting its slow rate of fire and lack of a bayonet made it inferior to the musket.

Since both militia and Continentals played roles in winning the war, the Revolutionary experience provided ammunition for two diametrically opposed schools of thought on American military policy: the one advocating a large Regular Army, the other reliance on the militia as the bulwark of national defense. The real issue, as Washington fully recognized, was less militia versus Regulars, for he never believed the infant republic needed a large standing army, than the extent to which militia could be trained and organized to form a reliable national reserve. The lesson Washington drew from the Revolution was that the militia should be “well regulated,” that is, trained and organized under uniform national system in all the states and subject to call into national service in war or emergency.

The lesson had far greater implications for the future than any of the tactical changes wrought by the American Revolution. It balanced the rights of freedom and equality, proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence, with a corresponding obligation of all citizens for military service to the nation. This concept, which was to find explicit expression in the “nation in arms” during the French Revolution, was also implicit in the American, and it portended the end of eighteenth century limited war, fought by professional armies officered by an aristocratic class. As Steuben so well recognized, American Continentals were not professional soldiers in the European sense, and militia even less so. They were, instead, a people’s army fighting for a cause. In this sense then, the American Revolution began the “democratization of war,” a process that was eventually to lead to national conscription and a new concept of total war for total victory.

The Treaty of Paris ended the Revolutionary War between Great Britain and the United States, recognized American independence and established borders for the new nation. After the British defeat at Yorktown, peace talks in Paris began in April 1782 between Richard Oswarld representing Great Britain and the American Peace Commissioners Benjamin Franklin, John Jay, and John Adams. The American negotiators were joined by Henry Laurens two days before the preliminary articles of peace were signed on November 30, 1782. The Treaty of Paris, formally ending the war, was not signed until September 3, 1783. The Continental Congress, which was temporarily situated in Annapolis, Maryland, at the time, ratified the Treaty of Paris on January 14, 1784.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: American Military History (United States Army Center of Military History)
CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson

American Revolution: Continental Marines; Birth

The story began on the seacoast–Americans have been an amphibious people from the beginning. The Revolutionary War started when the colonists gathered to throw the British army out of Boston seaport. It was ended when Major General Charles Cornwallis, hoping to be resupplied by the British Navy, retreated to the sea at Yorktown, Virginia, and was cut off by the French Fleet. Rather than starve, the British army marched out and laid down their arms. Between those two events, the story of American independence was repeatedly shaped by the sea and the wilderness waterways.

In the fall of 1775, seven months after the first gunfire at Lexington and Concord, George Washington commanded the Colonial Army and although desperately short of guns and gunpowder, ringed Major General Thomas Gage’s Boston troops in an uneasy siege. At Philadelphia, the new-born Continental Navy was organizing its first excursion to sea. The Thirteen Colonies were fighting for their liberty, and young Americans were making up their minds about entering the fight.

In this crisis, John Trevett stepped ashore at Philadelphia from the 75-ton sloop Katy with a number of other volunteers. Trevett was twenty-eight, a Rhode Islander of a seafaring family–with courage, level headed intelligence and a quiet New England sense of humor. He believed earnestly in the revolution: “We are engaged in a good cause,” he wrote later in his journal, “and are fighting the Lord’s battles.”

John Trevett was one of the first men to serve as an American Marine. On November 10, shortly before he reached Philadelphia, the Second Continental Congress, in session there, had resolved that two battalions of American Marines “be enlisted and commissioned to serve for and during the present war between Great Britain and the colonies.” The two battalions, intended as part of an expedition to bring Nova Scotia into the revolution, were never raised; General Washington did not want men taken from his army. But on November 28, the Congress commissioned Captain Samuel Nicholas, a Quaker and blacksmith’s son, as the first Marine officer. The American Marines were born.

The Congress had already begun to pull together a Continental Navy and appointed a longtime merchant sea captain, Esek Hopkins of Rhode Island, as commander-in-chief of the fleet. “Though antiquated in figure,” General Henry Knox wrote his wife of Hopkins, “he is shrewd and sensible.” Commodore Hopkins promptly recruited a hundred men in his home state. Abraham Whipple brought some of them to Philadelphia in Katy, which then joined the Continental Navy as the 12-gun Providence. John Trevett was one of these volunteers, arriving in Philadelphia on December 5. It is possible that Trevett was signed up in Robert Mullan’s Tun Tavern on the east side of King (now South Water) street at the corner of Tun (now Wilco’s) Alley, which led down to the Delaware River. As Trevett wrote in his diary, “I went aboard the Ship Columbus as a First Lieutenant of Marines.” His formal commission was dated February 13, 1776, by which time he was already on board.

While the winter ice imprisoned Hopkin’s eight ships in Delaware Bay, he prepared his fleet and his officers enlisted 234 men to serve as Marines. Captain Nicolas was aboard the 24-gun flagship Alfred with Lieutenant Matthew Parke, son of prominent British family, and Lieutenant John Fitzpatrick. Also on Alfred was a young naval officer, John Paul Jones. John Trevett was lieutenant of Marines on the next largest ship, the 20-gun Columbus, with Marine Captain Joseph Shoemaker and Captain Whipple in command. Isaac Craig, an Irish-born carpenter, was lieutenant of Marines on the Brig Andrea Doria. Captain John Welsh, also Irish-born, led the Marines on the Brig Cabot. Lieutenant Henry Dayton commanded the 20 Marines on Providence. On February 17, the ice freed the squadron.

Hopkins’ orders were to tackle the British men-of-war off the Virginia and Carolina coasts. He decided to use his discretion; he had a better idea. Knowing General Washington was practically out of gunpowder; Hopkins planned to seize a supply of it from the enemy’s naval depot in the Bahamas.

On March 1, the little American fleet rendezvoused of Great Abaco Island in the Bahamas. Hopkins organized a landing force of Marines under Captain Nicholas and 50 sailors led by Lieutenant Thomas Weaver of Cabot. Hopkins ordered them to sail, in Providence and two small captured sloops, to Nassau on the island of New Providence, where, he had heard; they would find 600 barrels of gunpowder.

Speeding ahead to surprise the British, the sloops with the landing force were spotted from the shore. The fort fired an alarm signal. Lieutenant John Paul Jones described the landing: “ We then ran in and anchored at a small key three leagues to windward of the town, and form thence the Commodore dispatched the Marines, with the sloop Providence and schooner Wasp to cover their landing, They landed without opposition.” They went ashore in whaleboats two miles east of Fort Montagu.

At 2 P.M. on Sunday, March 3 1778, American Marines had landed for the first time.

Lieutenant Trevett played a key role in the events that followed: “I took command of one of the companies and marched to the first fort (he wrote in his Journal.) They fired a few 18 pound shot, but did no damage. We saw an officer coming and I went up to know what he wanted. He informed me that Governor [Montfort] Brown[e] would wish to know who we were, and what our business was. We soon gave him his answer and the first fort [Fort Montagu] stopped firing, and that night we lodged in the fort.”

At daybreak, Nicholas marched the mile to the edge of town. There he demanded the keys to the second fort, Fort Nassau, and hauled down the British colors. It was as simple as that. But Nicholas’ decision to spend the night at Fort Montagu–and Hopkins failure to block the harbor–had been fatal to the success of the expedition. During the night, Governor Browne had sent off the bulk of the gunpowder–162 casks–to safety in Florida by two ships that sailed past Hopkins’ squadron.

With the landing force in possession of the forts, Hopkins brought Alfred into the harbor and came ashore. Trevett was assigned to take a detachment of 32 Marines and guard the governor in his house on the hill until they could back to the mainland as a prisoner.

The Americans found only 24 cask of gunpowder. They also took 46 cannon from Fort Nassau, 12 smaller guns from Fort Montagu, and 15 mortars. After loading this booty and assorted ammunition, they set sail on March 17, bringing with them three ships captured from the British and Governor Browne and two other officials as prisoners.

On the return cruise, Hopkins’ fleet met the 20-gun Glasgow off Block Island. At 2 A.M. on April 6, his flagship engaged the long frigate in a battle that opened when a Marine of Cabot tossed a grenade down on Glasgow’s deck. The fight raged for one and a half hours. Among the 11 Americans dead were 2nd Marine Lieutenant John Hood Wilson and two enlisted Marines of Cabot, which met the enemy first, and 2nd Lieutenant Fitzpatrick of Alfred. Fitzpatrick was standing next to Captain Nicholas on the quarter-deck when he was struck in the head by a musket ball. The damaged Glasgow high tailed it to Newport, Rhode Island; and Hopkins’ ships put in at New London. There were only one dead and three wounded on the British ships, all shot by the Marines musket fire.

News of the expedition stirred excitement in the colonies. Commodore Hopkins was congratulated by John Hancock, president of the Continental Congress; and on April 23 General Washington, on his way from Cambridge to New York, stopped at New London and honored Alfred with a visit. But later Hopkins was dismissed from the service on charges brought by a group of officers led by Marine Captain John Grannis.

Historians call the gunpowder expedition “the first fight in the records of the Regular Navy.” John Trevett was paid off in Continental Dollars–which, he noted, would pay him the equivalent of one pair of shoes for five months work–but he did not complain. He wrote cheerfully, “A grand cruise and I am glad it ended so well.”

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: U.S. Marine Corps Story; BY: J. Robert Moskin
CONTRIBUTOR: Cade Pommeraan

American Revolution: Winning Independence; 1777-1783 ( Part 2)

Valley Forge: The name of Valley Forge has come to stand, and rightly so, as a patriotic symbol of suffering, courage, and perseverance. The hard core of 6,000 Continentals who stayed with Washington during that bitter winter of 1777-78 indeed suffered much. Some men had no shoes, no pants, no blankets. Weeks passed when there was no meat and men were reduced to boiling their shoes and eating them. The wintry winds penetrated the tattered tents that were at first the only shelter.

The symbolism of Valley Forge should not be allowed to obscure the fact that the suffering was largely unnecessary. While the soldiers shivered and went hungry, food rotted and clothing lay unused in depots throughout the country. True, access to Valley Forge was difficult, but little determined effort was made to get supplies into the area. The supply and transport system broke down. In mid-1777, both the Quartermaster and Commissary Generals resigned along with numerous subordinate officials in both departments, mostly merchants who found private trade more lucrative. Congress, in refuge at York, Pennsylvania, and split into factions, found it difficult to find replacements. If there was not, as most historians now believe, an organized cabal seeking to replace Washington with Gates, there were many, both in and out of the Army, who were dissatisfied with the Commander in Chief, and much intrigue went on. Gates was made president of the new Board of War set up in 1777, and at least two of its members were enemies of Washington. In the administrative chaos at the height of the Valley Forge crisis, there was no functioning Quartermaster General at all.

Washington weathered the storm and the Continental Army was to emerge from Valley Forge a more effective force than before. With his advice, Congress instituted reforms in the Quartermaster and Commissary Departments that temporarily restored the effectiveness of both agencies. Washington’s ablest subordinate, General Greene, reluctantly accepted the post of Quartermaster General. The Continental Army itself gained a new professional competence from the training given by the Prussian, Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben.

Steuben appeared at Valley Forge in February 1778 arrayed in such martial splendor that one private thought he had seen Mars, the god of war, himself. He represented himself as a baron, a title he had acquired in the service of a small German state, and as a former lieutenant general on the staff of Frederick the Great though in reality he had been only a captain. The fraud was harmless, for Steuben had a broad knowledge of military affairs and his remarkable sense of the dramatic was combined with the common touch a true Prussian baron might well have lacked.

Washington had long sensed the need for uniform training and organization, and after a short trial he secured the appointment of Steuben as Inspector General in charge of a training program. Steuben carried out the program during the late winter and early spring of 1778, teaching the Continental Army a simplified but effective version of the drill formations and movements of European armies, proper care of equipment, and the use of the bayonet, a weapon in which British superiority had previously been marked. He attempted to consolidate the understrength regiments and companies and organized light infantry companies as the elite force of the Army. He constantly sought to impress upon the officers their responsibility for taking care of the men. Steuben never lost sight of the difference between the American citizen soldier and the European professional. He early noted that American soldiers had to be told why they did things before they would do them well, and he applied this philosophy in his training program. His trenchant good humor and vigorous profanity, almost the only English he knew, delighted the Continental soldiers and made the rigorous drill more palatable. After Valley Forge, Continentals would fight on equal terms with British Regulars in the open field.

First Fruits of the French Alliance: While the Continental Army was undergoing its ordeal and transformation at Valley Forge, Howe dallied in Philadelphia, forfeiting whatever remaining chance he had to win a decisive victory before the effects of the French alliance were felt He had had his fill of the American war and the king accepted his resignation from command, appointing General Clinton as his successor. As Washington prepared to sally forth from Valley Forge, the British Army and the Philadelphia Tories said goodbye to their old commander in one of the most lavish celebrations ever held in America, the Mischianza, a veritable Belshazzar’s feast. The handwriting on the wall appeared in the form of orders, already in Clinton’s hands, to evacuate the American capital. With the French in the war, England had to look to the safety of the long ocean supply line to America and to the protection of its possessions in other parts of the world. Clinton’s orders were to detach 5,000 men to the West Indies and 3,000 to Florida, and to return the rest of his army to New York by sea.

As Clinton prepared to depart Philadelphia, Washington had high hopes that the war might be won in 1778 by a co-operative effort between his army and the French Fleet. The Comte d’Estaing with a French naval squadron of eleven ships of the line and transports carrying 4,000 troops left France in May to sail for the American coast. D’Estaing’s fleet was considerably more powerful than any Admiral Howe could immediately concentrate in American waters. For a brief period in 1778 the strategic initiative passed from British hands, and Washington hoped to make full use of it.

Clinton had already decided, before he learned of the threat from d’Estaing, to move his army overland to New York prior to making any detachments, largely because he could find no place for 3,000 horses on the transports. On June 18, 1778, he set out with about 10,000 men. Washington, who by that time had gathered about 12,000, immediately occupied Philadelphia and then took up the pursuit of Clinton, undecided as to whether he should risk an attack on the British column while it was on the march. His Council of War was divided, though none of his generals advised a “general action.” The boldest, Brigadier General Anthony Wayne, and the young major general, the Marquis de Lafayette, urged a “partial attack” to strike at a portion of the British Army while it was strung out on the road; the most cautious, General Lee, who had been exchanged and had rejoined the army at Valley Forge, advised only guerrilla action to harass the British columns. On June 26 Washington decided to take a bold approach, though he issued no orders indicating an intention to bring on a “general action.” He sent forward an advance guard composed of almost half his army to strike at the British rear when Clinton moved out of Monmouth Court House on the morning of June 27. Lee, the cautious, claimed the command from Lafayette, the bold, when he learned the detachment would be so large.

In the early morning, Lee advanced over rough ground that had not been reconnoitered and made contact with the British rear, but Clinton reacted quickly and maneuvered to envelop the American right flank. Lee, feeling that his force was in an untenable position, began a retreat that became quite confused. Washington rode up amidst the confusion and, exceedingly irate to find the advance guard in retreat, exchanged harsh words with Lee. He then assumed direction of what had to be a defense against a British counterattack. The battle that followed, involving the bulk of both armies, lasted until nightfall on a hot, sultry day with both sides holding their own. For the first time the Americans fought well with the bayonet as well as with the musket and rifle, and their battlefield behavior generally reflected the Valley Forge training. Nevertheless, Washington failed to strike a telling blow at the British Army, for Clinton slipped away in the night and in a few days completed the retreat to New York. Lee demanded and got a court-martial at which he was judged, perhaps unjustly, guilty of disobedience of orders, poor conduct of the retreat, and disrespect for the Commander in Chief. As a consequence he retired from the Army, though the controversy over his actions at Monmouth was to go on for years.

Washington, meanwhile, sought his victory in co-operation with the French Fleet. D’Estaing arrived off the coast on July 8 and the two commanders at first agreed on a combined land and sea attack on New York, but d’Estaing feared he would be unable to get his deep-draft ships across the bar that extended from Staten Island to Sandy Hook, in order to get at Howe’s inferior fleet. They then decided to transfer the attack to the other and weaker British stronghold at Newport, Rhode Island, a city standing on an island with difficult approaches. A plan was agreed on whereby the French Fleet would force the passage on the west side of the island and an American force under General Sullivan would cross over and mount an assault from the east. The whole scheme soon went awry. The French Fleet arrived off Newport on July 29 and successfully forced the passage; Sullivan began crossing on the east on August 8 and d’Estaing began to disembark his troops. Unfortunately at this juncture Admiral Howe appeared with a reinforced British Fleet, forcing d’Estaing to re-embark his troops and put out to sea to meet Howe. As the two fleets maneuvered for advantage, a great gale scattered both on August 12. The British returned to New York to refit, and the French Fleet to Boston, whence d’Estaing decided he must move on to tasks he considered more pressing in the West Indies. Sullivan was left to extricate his forces from an untenable position as best he could, and the first experiment in Franco-American co-operation came to a disappointing end with recriminations on both sides.

The fiasco at Newport ended any hopes for an early victory over the British as a result of the French alliance. By the next year, as the French were forced to devote their major attention to the West Indies, the British regained the initiative on the mainland, and the war entered a new phase.

The New Conditions of the War: After France entered the war in 1778, it rapidly took on the dimensions of a major European as well as an American conflict. In 1779 Spain declared war against England, and in the following year Holland followed suit. The necessity of fighting European enemies in the West Indies and other areas and of standing guard at home against invasion weakened the British effort against the American rebels. Yet the Americans were unable to take full advantage of Britain’s embarrassments, for their own effort suffered more and more from war weariness, lack of strong direction, and inadequate finance. Moreover, the interests of European states fighting Britain did not necessarily coincide with American interests. Spain and Holland did not ally themselves with the American states at all, and even France found it expedient to devote its major effort to the West Indies. Finally, the entry of ancient enemies into the fray spurred the British to intensify their effort and evoked some, if not enough, of that characteristic tenacity that has produced victory for England in so many wars. Despite their many new commitments, the British were able to maintain in America an army that was usually superior in numbers to the dwindling Continental Army, though never strong enough to undertake offensives again on the scale of those of 1776 and 1777.

Monmouth was the last general engagement in the north between Washington’s and Clinton’s armies. In 1779 the situation there became a stalemate and remained so until the end of the war. Washington set up a defense system around New York with its center at West Point, and Clinton made no attempt to attack his main defense line. The British commander did, in late spring 1779, attempt to draw Washington into the open by descending in force on unfinished American outpost fortifications at Verplanck’s Point and Stony Point, but Washington refused to take the bait. When Clinton withdrew his main force to New York, the American commander retaliated by sending Major General Anthony Wayne on July 15, 1779, with an elite corps of light infantry, on a stealthy night attack on Stony Point, a successful action more notable for demonstrating the proficiency with which the Americans now used the bayonet than for any important strategic gains. Wayne was unable to take Verplanck’s, and Clinton rapidly retook Stony Point. Thereafter the war around New York became largely an affair of raids, skirmishes, and constant vigilance on both sides.

Clinton’s inaction allowed Washington to attempt to deal with British inspired Indian attacks. Although Burgoyne’s defeat ended the threat of invasion from Canada, the British continued to incite the Indians all along the frontier to bloody raids on American settlements. From Fort Niagara and Detroit they sent out their bands, usually led by Tories, to pillage, scalp, and burn in the Mohawk Valley of New York, the Wyoming Valley of Pennsylvania, and the new American settlements in Kentucky. In August 1779 Washington detached General Sullivan with a force to deal with the Iroquois in Pennsylvania and New York. Sullivan laid waste the Indians’ villages and defeated a force of Tories and Indians at Newtown on August 29.

In the winter of 1778-79, the state of Virginia had sponsored an expedition that struck a severe blow at the British and Indians in the northwest. Young Lieutenant Colonel George Rogers Clark with a force of only I75 men, ostensibly recruited for the defense of Kentucky, overran all the British posts in what is today Illinois and Indiana. Neither he nor Sullivan, however, was able to strike at the sources of the trouble at Niagara and Detroit. Indian raids along the frontiers continued, though they were somewhat less frequent and severe.

British Successes in the South: Late in 1778 the British began to turn their main effort to the south. Tory strength was greater in the Carolinas and Georgia and the area was closer to the West Indies, where the British Fleet had to stand guard against the French. The king’s ministers hoped to bring the southern states into the fold one by one, and from bases there to strangle the recalcitrant north. A small British force operating from Florida quickly overran thinly populated Georgia in the winter of 1778-79. Alarmed by this development, Congress sent General Benjamin Lincoln south to Charleston in December 1778 to command the Southern Army and organize the southern effort. Lincoln gathered 3,500 Continentals and militiamen, but in May 1779, while he maneuvered along the Georgia border, the British commander, Major General Augustine Prevost, slipped around him to lay siege to Charleston. The city barely managed to hold out until Lincoln returned to relieve it.

 In September 1779 d’Estaing arrived off the coast of Georgia with a strong French Fleet and 6,000 troops. Lincoln then hurried south with 1,350 Americans to join him in a siege of the main British base at Savannah. Unfortunately, the Franco-American force had to hurry its attack because d’Estaing was unwilling to risk his fleet in a position dangerously exposed to autumn storms. The French and Americans mounted a direct assault on Savannah on October 9, abandoning their plan to make a systematic approach by regular parallels. The British in strongly entrenched positions repulsed the attack in what was essentially a Bunker Hill in reverse, the French and Americans suffering staggering losses. D’Estaing then sailed away to the West Indies, Lincoln returned to Charleston, and the second attempt at Franco-American cooperation ended in much the same atmosphere of bitterness and disillusion as the first.

Meanwhile Clinton, urged on by the British Government, hall determined to push the southern campaign in earnest. In October 1779 he withdrew the British garrison from Newport, pulled in his troops from outposts around New York, and prepared to move south against Charleston with a large part of his force. With d’Estaing’s withdrawal the British regained control of the sea along the American coast, giving Clinton a mobility that Washington could not match. While Clinton drew forces from New York and Savannah to achieve a decisive concentration of force (14,000 men) at Charleston, Washington was able to send only piecemeal reinforcements to Lincoln over difficult overland routes. Applying the lessons of his experience in 1776, Clinton this time carefully planned a coordinated Army-Navy attack. First, he landed his force on John’s Island to the south, then moved up to the Ashley River, investing Charleston from the land side. Lincoln, under strong pressure from the South Carolina authorities, concentrated his forces in a citadel defense on the neck of land between the Ashley and Cooper Rivers, leaving Fort Moultrie in the harbor lightly manned. On April 8 British warships successfully forced the passage past Moultrie, investing Charleston from the sea. The siege then proceeded in traditional eighteenth century fashion, and on May 12, 1780, Lincoln surrendered his entire force of 5,466 men, the greatest disaster to befall the American cause during the war. Meanwhile, Colonel Abraham Buford with 350 Virginians was moving south to reinforce the garrison. Lieutenant Colonel Banastre Tarleton with a force of British cavalry took Buford by surprise at the Waxhaws, a district near the North Carolina border, and slaughtered most of his men, refusing to honor the white flag Buford displayed.

After the capture of Charleston, Clinton returned to New York with about a third of his force, leaving General Cornwallis with 8,000 men to follow up the victory. Cornwallis established his main seaboard bases at Savannah, Beaufort, Charleston, and Georgetown, and in the interior extended his line of control along the Savannah River westward to Ninety-Six and northward to Camden and Rocky Mount. Cornwallis’ force, however, was too small to police so large an area, even with the aid of the numerous Tories who took to the field. Though no organized Continental force remained in the Carolinas and Georgia, American guerrillas, led by Brigadier Gens. Thomas Sumter and Andrew Pickens and Lieutenant Colonel Francis Marion, began to harry British posts and lines of communications and to battle the bands of Tories. A bloody, ruthless, and confused civil war ensued, its character determined in no small degree by Tarleton’s action at the Waxhaws. In this way, as in the Saratoga campaign, the American grass roots strength began once again to assert itself and to deny the British the fruits of military victory won in the field.

On June 22, 1780, two more understrength Continental brigades from Washington’s army arrived at Hillsboro, North Carolina, to form the nucleus of a new Southern Army around which militia could rally and which could serve as the nerve center of guerrilla resistance. In July Congress, without consulting Washington, provided a commander for this army in the person of General Gates, the hero of Saratoga. Gates soon lost his northern laurels. Gathering a force of about 4,000 men, mostly militia, he set out to attack the British post at Camden, South Carolina. Cornwallis hurried north from Charleston with reinforcements and his army of 2,200 British Regulars made contact with Gates outside Camden on the night of August 15. In the battle that ensued the following morning, Gates deployed his militia on the left and the Continentals under Major General Johann de Kalb on the right. The militia were still forming in the hazy dawn when Cornwallis struck, and they fled in panic before the British onslaught. De Kalb’s outnumbered Continentals put up a valiant but hopeless fight. Tarleton’s cavalry pursued the fleeing Americans for 30 miles, killing or making prisoner those who lagged. Gates himself fled too fast for Tarleton, reaching Hillsboro, 160 miles away, in three days. There he was able to gather only about 800 survivors of the Southern Army. To add to the disaster, Tarleton caught up with General Sumter, whom Gates had sent with a detachment to raid a British wagon train, and virtually destroyed his force in a surprise attack at Fishing Creek on August 18. Once more South Carolina seemed safely in British hands.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: American Military History (United States Army Center of Military History)
CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson

American Revolution: Winning Independence: 1777-1783 (Part 1)

The year 1777 was most critical for the British. The issue, very plainly, was whether they could score such success in putting down the American revolt that the French would not dare enter the war openly to aid the American rebels. Yet it was in this critical year that British plans were most confused and British operations most disjointed. The British campaign of 1777 provides one of the most striking object lessons in military history of the dangers of divided command.

The Campaign of 1777: With secure bases at New York and Newport, Howe had a chance to get the early start that had been denied him the previous year. His first plan, advanced; on November 30, 1776, was probably the most comprehensive put forward by any British commander during the war. He proposed to maintain a small force of about 8,000 to contain Washington in New Jersey and 7,000 to garrison New York, while sending one column of 10,000 from Newport into New England and another column of 10,000 from New York up the Hudson to form a junction with a British force moving down from Canada. On the assumption that these moves would be successful by autumn, he would next capture Philadelphia, the rebel capital, and then make the southern provinces the “objects of the winter.” For this plan, Howe requested 35,000 men, 15,000 more effective troops than he had left at the end of the 1776 campaign. Sir George Germain, the American Secretary, could promise him only 8,000. Even before receiving this news, but evidently influenced by Trenton and Princeton, Howe changed his plan and proposed to devote his main effort in 1777 to taking Philadelphia. On March3, 1777, Germain informed Howe that the Philadelphia plan was approved, but that there might be only 5,500 reinforcements. At the same time Germain and the king urged a “warm diversion” against New England.

Meanwhile, Sir John Burgoyne, who had succeeded in obtaining the separate military command in Canada, submitted his plan calling for an advance southward to “a junction with Howe.” Germain and the king also approved this plan on March 29, though aware of Howe’s intention to go to Philadelphia. They seem to have expected either that Howe would be able to form his junction by the “warm diversion,” or else that he would take Philadelphia quickly and then turn north to aid Burgoyne. In any case, Germain approved two separate and un-coordinated plans, and Howe and Burgoyne went their separate ways, doing nothing to remedy the situation. Howe’s Philadelphia plan did provide for leaving enough force in New York for what its commander, General Clinton, called “a damn’d starved offensive,” but Clinton’s orders were vague. Quite possibly Burgoyne knew before he left England for Canada that Howe was going to Philadelphia, but ambitious “Gentleman Johnny” was determined to make a reputation in the American war, and evidently believed he could succeed alone. Even when he learned certainly on August 3, 1777, that he could not expect Howe’s cooperation, he persisted in his design. As Howe thought Pennsylvania was filled with royalists, Burgoyne cherished the illusion that legions of Tories in New York and western New England were simply awaiting the appearance of the king’s troops to rally to the colors.

Again in 1777 the late arrival of Howe’s reinforcements and stores ships gave Washington time that he sorely needed. Men to form the new Continental Army came in slowly and not until June did the Americans have a force of 8,000. On the northern line the defenses were even more thinly manned. Supplies for troops in the field were also short, but the arrival of the first three ships bearing secret aid from France vastly improved the situation. They were evidence of the covert support of the French Government; a mission sent by Congress to France was meanwhile working diligently to enlist open aid and to embroil France in a war with England. The French Foreign Minister, the Comte de Vergennes, had already decided to take that risk when and if the American rebels demonstrated their serious purpose and ability to fulfill it by some signal victory in the field.

With the first foreign material aid in 1777, the influx of foreign officers into the American Army began. These officers were no unmixed blessing. Most were adventurers in search of fortune or of reputation with little facility for adjusting themselves to American conditions. Few were willing to accept any but the highest ranks. Nevertheless, they brought with them professional military knowledge and competence that the Continental Army sorely needed. When the misfits were culled out, this knowledge and competence were used to considerable advantage. Louis DuPortail, a Frenchman, and Thaddeus Kosciuszko, a Pole, did much to advance the art of engineering in the Continental Army; Casimir Pulaski, another Pole, organized its first genuine cavalry contingent; Johann de Kalb and Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben, both Germans, and the Marquis de Lafayette, an influential French nobleman who financed his own way, were all to make valuable contributions as trainers and leaders. On the Continental Army of 1777, however, these foreign volunteers had little effect and it remained much as it had been before, a relatively untrained body of inexperienced enlistees.

When Howe finally began to stir in June 1777, Washington posted his army at Middlebrook, New Jersey, in a position either to bar Howe’s overland route to Philadelphia or to move rapidly up the Hudson to oppose an advance northward. Washington confidently expected Howe to move northward to form a junction with Burgoyne, but decided he must stay in front of the main British Army wherever it went. Following the principle of economy of force, he disposed a small part of his army under General Putnam in fortifications guarding the approaches up the Hudson, and at a critical moment detached a small force to aid Schuyler against Burgoyne. The bulk of his army he kept in front of Howe in an effort to defend Philadelphia. Forts were bulk along the Delaware River and other steps taken to block the approach to the Continental capital by sea.

In the effort to defend Philadelphia Washington again failed, but hardly so ignominiously as he had the year before in New York. After maneuvering in New Jersey for upward of two months, Howe in August put most of his army on board ship and sailed down the coast and up the Chesapeake Bay to Head of Elk (a small town at the head of the Elk River) in Maryland, putting himself even further away from Burgoyne. (Map 7) Though surprised by Howe’s movement, Washington rapidly shifted his own force south and took up a position at Chad’s Ford on Brandywine Creek, blocking the approach to Philadelphia. There on September 11, 1777, Howe executed a flanking movement not dissimilar to that employed on Long Island and again defeated Washington. The American commander had disposed his army in two main parts, one directly opposite Chad’s Ford under his personal command and the other under General Sullivan guarding the right flank upstream. While Lieutenant General Wilhelm van Knyphausen’s Hessian troops demonstrated opposite the ford, a larger force under Lord Cornwallis marched upstream, crossed the Brandywine, and moved to take Sullivan from the rear. Washington lacked good cavalry reconnaissance, and did not get positive information on Cornwallis’ movement until the eleventh hour. Sullivan was in the process of changing front when the British struck and his men retreated in confusion. Washington was able to salvage the situation by dispatching General Greene with two brigades to fight a valiant rear-guard action, but the move weakened his front opposite Kynphausen and his forces also had to fall back. Nevertheless, the trap was averted and the Continental Army retired in good order to Chester.

Howe followed with a series of maneuvers comparable to those he had executed in New York, and was able to enter Philadelphia with a minimum of fighting on September 26. A combined attack of British Army and Navy forces shortly afterward reduced the forts on the Delaware and opened the river as a British supply line.

On entering Philadelphia, Howe dispersed his forces, stationing 9,000 men at Germantown north of the city, 3,000 in New Jersey, and the rest in Philadelphia. As Howe had repeated his performance in New York, Washington sought to repeat Trenton by a surprise attack on Germantown. The plan was much like that used at Trenton but involved far more complicated movements by much larger bodies of troops. Four columns, two of Continentals under Sullivan and Greene and two of militias moving at night over different roads were to converge on Germantown simultaneously at dawn on October 4. The plan violated the principle of simplicity, for such a maneuver was difficult even for well-trained professionals to execute. The two columns of Continentals arrived at different times and fired on each other in an early morning fog. The two militia columns never arrived at all. British fire from a stone house, the Chew Mansion, held up the advance while American generals argued whether they could leave a fortress in their rear. The British, though surprised, had better discipline and cohesion and were able to re-form and send fresh troops into the fray. The Americans retreated about 8:00 a.m., leaving Howe’s troops in command of the field.

After Germantown Howe once again concentrated his army and moved to confront Washington at Whitemarsh, but finally withdrew to winter quarters in Philadelphia without giving battle. Washington chose the site for his own winter quarters at a place called Valley Forge, twenty miles northwest of the city. Howe had gained his objective but it proved of no lasting value to him. Congress fled west to York, Pennsylvania. No swarms of loyalists rallied to the British standards. And Howe had left Burgoyne to lose a whole British army in the north.

Burgoyne set out from Canada in June, his object to reach Albany by fall. His force was divided into two parts. The first and largest part, 7,200 British and Hessian Regulars and 650 Tories, Canadians, and Indians, under his personal command, was to take the route down Lake Champlain to Ticonderoga and thence via Lake George to the Hudson. The second 700 Regulars and 1,000 Tories and Indian braves under Colonel Barry St. Leger, was to move via Lake Ontario to Oswego and thence down the Mohawk Valley to join Burgoyne before Albany. In his preparations, Burgoyne evidently forgot the lesson the British had learned in the French and Indian War, that in the wilderness troops had to be prepared to travel light and fight like Indians. He carried 138 pieces of artillery and a heavy load of officers’ personal baggage. Numerous ladies of high and low estate accompanied the expedition. When he started down the lakes, Burgoyne did not have enough horses and wagons to transport his artillery and baggage once he had to leave the water and move overland.

At first Burgoyne’s American opposition was very weak, only about 2,500 Continentals at Ticonderoga and about 450 at old Fort Stanwix, the sole American bulwark in the Mohawk Valley. Dissension among the Americans was rife, the New Englanders refusing to support Schuyler, the aristocratic New Yorker who commanded the Northern Army, and openly intriguing to replace him with their own favorite, Major General Horatio Gates. Ticonderoga fell to Burgoyne on June 27 all too easily. American forces dispersed and Burgoyne pursued the remnants down to Skenesborough. Once that far along, he decided to continue overland to the Hudson instead, of returning to Ticonderoga to float his force down Lake George, though much of his impedimenta still had to be carried by boat down the lake.

The overland line of advance was already a nightmare, running along wilderness trails, through marshes, and across wide ravines and creeks that had been swollen by abnormally heavy rains. Schuyler adopted the tactic of making it even worse by destroying bridges, cutting trees in Burgoyne’s path, and digging trenches to let the waters of swamps onto drier ground. The British were able to move at a rate of little more than a mile a day and took until July 29 to reach Fort Edward on the Hudson. By that time Burgoyne was desperately short of horses, wagons, and oxen. Yet Schuyler, with a unstable force of 4,500 men discouraged by continual retreats, was in no position to give battle.

Washington did what he could to strengthen the Northern Army at this juncture. He first dispatched Major General Benedict Arnold, his most aggressive field commander, and Major General Benjamin Lincoln, a Massachusetts man noted for his influence with the New England militia. On August 16 he detached Colonel Daniel Morgan with 500 riflemen from the main army in Pennsylvania and ordered them along with 750 men from Putnam’s force in the New York highlands to join Schuyler. The riflemen were calculated to furnish an antidote for Burgoyne’s Indians who, despite his efforts to restrain them, were terrorizing the countryside.

It was the rising militia, rather than Washington, who were to provide the Northern Army with its main reinforcements. Nothing worked more to produce this result than Burgoyne’s employment of Indians. The murder and scalping of a beautiful white woman, Jane McCrea, dramatized the Indian threat as nothing else probably could have done. New England militiamen now began to rally to the cause, though they still refused to cooperate with Schuyler. New Hampshire commissioned John Stark, a disgruntled ax-colonel in the Continental Army and a veteran of Bunker Hill and Trenton, as a brigadier general in the state service (a rank denied him by Congress), and Stark quickly recruited 2,000 men. Refusing Schuyler’s request that he join the main army, Stark took up a position at Bennington in southern Vermont to guard the New England frontier. On August 11 Burgoyne detached a force of 650 men under Hessian Colonel Friedrich Baum to forage for cattle, horses, and transport in the very area Stark was occupying. At Bennington on August 16 Stark nearly annihilated Baum’s force, and reinforcements sent by Burgoyne arrived on the field just in time to be soundly thrashed in turn. Burgoyne not only failed to secure his much-needed supplies and transport but also lost about a tenth of his command.

Meanwhile, St. Leger with his Tories and Indians had appeared before Fort Stanwix on August 2. The garrison, fearing massacre by the Indians, determined to hold out to the bitter end. On August 4, the Tryon County militia under Brigadier General Nicholas Herkimer set out to relieve the fort but were ambushed by the Indians in a wooded ravine near Oriskany. The militia, under the direction of a mortally wounded Herkimer, scattered in the woods and fought a bloody afternoon’s battle in a summer thunderstorm. Both sides suffered heavy losses, and though the militia were unable to relieve Stanwix the losses discouraged St. Leger’s Indians, who were already restless in the static siege operation at Stanwix.

Despite his own weak position, when Schuyler learned of the plight of the Stanwix garrison, he courageously detached Benedict Arnold with 950 Continentals to march to its relief. Arnold devised a ruse that took full advantage of the dissatisfaction and natural superstition of the Indians. Employing a half-wit Dutchman, his clothes shot full of holes, and a friendly Oneida Indian as his messengers, Arnold spread the rumor that the Continentals were approaching “as numerous as the leaves on the trees.” The Indians, who had special respect for any madman, departed in haste, scalping not a few of their Tory allies as they went, and St. Leger was forced to abandon the siege.

Bennington and Stanwix were serious blows to Burgoyne. By early September he knew he could expect help from neither Howe nor St. Leger. Disillusioned about the Tories, he wrote Germain: “The great bulk of the country is undoubtedly with Congress in principle and zeal; and their measures are executed with a secrecy and dispatch that are not to be equaled. Wherever the King’s forces point, militia in the amount of three or four thousand assemble in twenty-four hours; they bring with them their subsistence, etc., and the alarm over, they return to their farms….” Nevertheless, gambler that he was, Burgoyne crossed the Hudson to the west side during September 13 and 14, signaling his intention to get to Albany or lose his army. While his supply problem daily became worse, his Indians, with a natural instinct for sensing approaching disaster, drifted off into the forests, leaving him with little means of gaining intelligence of the American dispositions.

The American forces were meanwhile gathering strength. Congress finally deferred to New England sentiment on August 19 and replaced Schuyler with Gates. Gates was more the beneficiary than the cause of the improved situation, but his appointment helped morale and encouraged the New England militia. Washington’s emissary, General Lincoln, also did his part. Gates understood Burgoyne’s plight perfectly and adapted this tactics to take full advantage of it. He advanced his forces four miles northward and took up a position, surveyed and prepared by the Polish engineer, Kosciusko, on Bemis Heights, a few miles below Saratoga. Against this position Burgoyne launched his attack on September 19 and was repulsed with heavy losses. In the battle, usually known as Freeman’s Farm, Arnold persuaded Gates to let him go forward to counter the British attack, and Colonel Morgan’s riflemen, in a wooded terrain well suited to the use of their specialized weapon, took a heavy toll of British officers and men.

After Freeman’s Farm, the lines remained stable for three weeks. Burgoyne had heard that Clinton, with the force Howe had left in New York, had started north to relieve him. Clinton, in fact, stormed Forts Clinton and Montgomery on the Hudson on October 6, but, exercising that innate caution characteristic of all his actions, he refused to gamble for high stakes. He simply sent an advance guard on to Kingston and he himself returned to New York.

Burgoyne was left to his fate. Gates strengthened his entrenchments and calmly awaited the attack he was sure Burgoyne would have to make. Militia reinforcements increased his forces to around 10,000 by October 7. Meanwhile Burgoyne’s position grew more desperate. Food was running out; the meadows were grazed bare by the animals; and every day more men slipped into the forest, deserting the lost cause. With little intelligence of American strength or dispositions, on October 7 he sent out a “reconnaissance in force” to feel out the American positions. On learning that the British were approaching, Gates sent out a contingent including Morgan’s riflemen to meet them, and a second battle developed, usually known as Bemis Heights. The British suffered severe losses, five times those of the Americans, and were driven back to their fortified positions. Arnold, who had been at odds with Gates and was confined to his tent, broke out, rushed into the fray, and again distinguished himself before he was wounded in leading an attack on Breymann’s Redoubt.

Two days after the battle, Burgoyne withdrew to a position in the vicinity of Saratoga. Militia soon worked around to his rear and cut his supply lines. His position hopeless, Burgoyne finally capitulated on October 17 at Saratoga. The total prisoner count was nearly 6,000 and great quantities of military stores fell into American hands. The victory at Saratoga brought the Americans out well ahead in the campaign of 1777 despite the loss of Philadelphia. What had been at stake soon became obvious. In February 1778 France negotiated a treaty of alliance with the American states, tantamount to a declaration of war against England.

THE COMMENTARY GAZETTE®

SOURCE: American Military History (United States Army Center of Military History)
CONTRIBUTOR: Frances Thompson