After winning the Battle of Brandywine, the British captured Philadelphia on September 26, 1777. The British army finally left the Continental capital almost nine months later on June 18, 1778, following France’s entry into the war.
In December 1779, the Continental Army under George Washington made camp at Morristown, New Jersey, where they suffered through the “Hard Winter” of 1779–1780. The army faced unrelenting snow storms, sub-freezing temperatures, lack of supplies, and hunger.
On Washigton’s orders, American General John Sullivan led a campaign against the British-allied Iroquois nations and loyalist forces in New York. Sullivan reported that his forces burned forty Indian villages and their crops.