A Severe Battle Ensueddetails

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A Severe Battle Ensued

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This picture illustrates the Battle of Princeton, New Jersey, USA, in 1777, between the British insurgent forces and the government army.

When they reached Stony Brook, on the outskirts of Princeton, the sun was just rising, and they soon found that three regiments of British troops were stationed there ready to display their valor: one of them was just starting for Trenton, where it was ordered to re-enforce Lord Cornwallis. Washington had led his men into a wood by the roadside, where they were first seen by these advancing troops commanded by Colonel Mawhood.

A severe conflict ensued, in which the British at first seemed to be triumphant, and the gallant General Mercer fell, mortally wounded; but soon the Americans gained ground, cheered on by the voice of the Commander-in-chief, who rode fearlessly up and down directing all their movements. The British were fairly beaten, and Mawhood with his men began their retreat toward Trenton, where he hoped to join Cornwallis. In this short battle the enemy’s loss was one hundred killed and three hundred prisoners, while the Americans lost twenty-five or thirty men and a few officers. Among the latter, however, were the brave General Mercer and Colonel Haslet, both greatly lamented.

Washington now followed on after that part of the retreating foe which had gone toward New Brunswick, hoping to overtake them and capture their stores; but his men were too much exhausted to proceed so far, and he therefore changed his course toward Morristown, resting for awhile at Pluckamin on the road. Here his worn-out army was allowed a night’s repose after its arduous labors and long marches.

This was a providential move for the Americans, for Lord Cornwallis, on discovering how Washington had outgeneralled him, had started early in the morning for Brunswick, supposing they were close upon the heels of the Yankees, until they reached the place and found themselves again deceived. The great English soldier must have begun by this time to reahze the spirit of the American army, even if he did not quite rehsh their actions (p. 125)

I have retained the propaganda at the end; note that the so-called war of independence was actually an insurgent uprising of British people against their government,, not a war between America and England, since America was then a British colony and the inhabitants British subjects.

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