Mr. Bigdeal

Sandy Hook and the War of Independence...

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Throughout the American War of Independence (April 19, 1775 – September 3, 1783) Sandy Hook played a vital strategic point for both the British and Colonial Armies with the area constantly trafficked by the movement of troops by both sides. One very important Monmouth County, New Jersey historic confrontation and British escape to Sandy Hook occurred with the Battle of Monmouth fought near Monmouth Court House (modern-day Freehold Township, New Jersey).
On June 24, 1778, Washington had called a council of war to establish a strategy of battle against British army officer, General Sir Henry Clinton; the council agreed to avoid a major confrontation, and instead sent a small number of Patriot troops to harass the enemy's right and left flanks. When Washington arrived at nearby Englishtown, New Jersey on the morning of June 28, he ordered his generals to attack the British. General Charles Lee, who had been opposed to an all-out engagement with the British, was reluctant to attack, but he and his advance force were drawn into battle by British forces. Lee’s attack was poorly coordinated, and the Americans were quickly outnumbered when the British first division returned. Some of Lee's units began to withdraw, leading to a breakdown in command and control and forcing Lee to order a general retreat. Angered, General Washington ordered "Mad" Anthony Wayne to fight a delaying action with the last of Lee’s regiments, Stewart’s 13th Pennsylvania and Ramsay’s 3rd Maryland, to form to hold the British advance. For the rest of the day, the two armies clashed in the summer heat with high humidity and the temperature topping 100 degrees. Both sides finally withdrew after 5 o' clock from exhaustion. Washington planned to resume the battle on the next day, but General Clinton and his men slipped away unnoticed shortly after midnight and marched eastward to Sandy Hook where Clinton's army was ferried to New York by Royal Navy ships.
Numbering 10,000 British troops against 11,000 American, the Redcoats suffered some 300 casualties and the Americans 350. Up to 100 men are thought to have died of heatstroke during the battle. The Battle of Monmouth was the last battle of the Philadelphia campaign, begun the previous year, during which the British had inflicted two major defeats on Washington and occupied Philadelphia. The Patriots claimed victory at the Battle of Monmouth because of the fact that Washington was able to fight the British successfully under such hot weather conditions since the last victory in the Battle of Princeton on January 3. 1777. Lauded for his performance at Monmouth, it would secure Washington’s position as commander of Continental forces and thereby also save the Revolution.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

That's where the legend of Molly Pitcher was born.

I usta drink at that old tavern where they did, 200 years before. 

The Battle of Monmouth, I mean. Not Sandy hook. 

Edited by Ben Lippen

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Mary Ludwig Hays.........Brit. cannon ball passed between her legs carrying away her lower petticoat.

Edited by Mr. Bigdeal

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Posted (edited) · Report post

The present townships of Middletown, Colts Neck, Marlboro , Aberdeen, and Holmdel were known as the "Breadbasket of the Continental Army" during these battles.

Local farmers supplied provisions to Washingtons troops and were harassed by the Redcoats for doing so, but continued under the cover of darkness.

The names of of Washington"s Army lost in battle are on headstones on many small overgrown cemeteries in the area, including one in Colts Neck, between Laird Road and The Springsteen compound.

 

Doubtful the many McMansion inhabitants have a clue of the hallowed ground they occupy.

 

God rest those brave souls of the real Americans and the Spirit they possessed to defeat the Greatest Army of the Time

Edited by yarddog59

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There is a small unmarked cematery in the woods behind houses on Holmdel Raod in Holmdel. There are stones there from the revolutionary war marking the graves of men killed in the battle of Marlpitt. That smaller battle was fought near the site of the present Middletown train station.

Edited by JBreese1

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I just used the aerial map feature and was able to zoom in on where the cemetery is located. It sits in the woods behind houses on Holmdel Road and Canyon Woods Court, directly opposite Bellview Road. I cant find any reference to it and cant find any info on it, but I know it's there. I wonder if it is an unknown historical site. The tombstones had the old skull and bones on the top and you could read the inscriptions an a few of them. I lived right there from 1978 to 1984 and spent a lot of times in the woods. Even back then it was completely primitive with some of the stones lifted right out of the ground from tree growth.

Jim

 

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I just did some deeper research because something didn't look right. Canyon Woods Road was not that long and winding. There were only 3 homes on it and there was a farm field on the left when coming off Holmdel Road. My research shows that most of the homes were constructed in 1986. I wonder if some unscrupulous builder just bulldozed the site for profit. If not the remains could still be in the wooded area between Canyon Woods Court and Sherwood Court.

Jim

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There are a few sites in that area similar to what you describe. Some of it covered with invasive asian knot weed etc and difficult to see through this time of year. I used to fear nothing in the woods but then I met....... chiggers!

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yarddog, I lived at 890 Holmdel road and in that time period there was nothing but woods behind our house. The cemetery was back in the woods a ways off of our right rear property line. It was cool as hell and I always felt bad that there was no recognition for any of the hero's buried there. As I said, One in particular stood out. It had the name and stated the person was killed in the battle of Marlpit in 1778. there were a few more of the same style and era.

Jim

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THANKFULLY Monmouth County has acquired a significant amount of  legendary farmland in the area and preserved as open space ,ie Holmdel Park and the Ramanessen section and many other locations we routinely drive by.

Trail hikes in those parks especially, Rammenessen conjure up  visions of our revolutionary war heroes using native american  "guerrilla" tactics against the British formations.

Those men knew, what is still true today, that It takes courage and perseverance to overcome evil.

 Along with the learned men who wrote the Constitution back then, there are the same spirited folks now, who know and understand , who the Patriots were, where they fought for Freedom  and where they rest. They still place flowers and flags on those graves commemorating the men and women who started it and finished it for the world to enjoy.

"Freedom aint' free"

Happy Forth of July America!

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