Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Knox, Henry (1750-1806) to Lucy Knox

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00429 Author/Creator: Knox, Henry (1750-1806) Place Written: New York, New York Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 28 August 1776 Pagination: 2 p. ; 31.5 x 18.7 cm.

Summary of Content: Describes in detail the beginning of the Battle of Long Island (also known as the Battle of Brooklyn) on 27 August 1776. Looks forward to the future when they can be together again.

Full Transcript: New York Augt 28 1776 9 oClock eveg -
My dearest Lucy
The post is not come in so I shall not have the happiness to answer any Letter which I may receive ...from you - my time is so precarious That I must embrace every opportunity, my Lucy has heard the account of the Action of yesterday, and that I dare say in a way which has alarm'd her. About two o Clock in the morning the enemy attack'd the woods in front of our works on long Island where our Riflemen lay - they attack'd with a chosen part of the Hessians and all the light Infantry and Grenadiers of the army, and after about 6 or 7 hours smart skirmishing our people fell back in front of our works The enemy lost nearly 1000 kill'd among whom was General Grant and Capt Neilson of the 52d. we lost about the same number killd wounded & taken prisoners, among whom is General Sullivan & Lord Stirling - General Parsons was missing untill this morning when he return'd - I wish Lord Stirling and Genl Sullivan might return too But I fear they will not - I met with Some loss in my Regiment, they behav'd like heroes and are gone [2] to Glory - I was not on the Island myself being obligd to wait on my Lord Howe and the navy Gentry who threatn'd to pay us a visit - our works on the Island are Strong and our forces numerous so I think with the blessing of heaven that whenever [text loss] chuse to make the appeal we shall be able to give a good account of them - we took a Lt Ragg whom I knew at Boston and 25 Grenadiers of the marines, some light Horsemen, [inserted: & some] of the 52d Rg & some Deserters - my friend little Barry of the 52d had the picket last night, we took one of his party I wish it had been him he should have been well us'd
It is not certain what is become of General Sullivan and Lord Stirling but it is suppos'd they are kill'd I have my dearest friend in grateful remembrance your kind Letter of last Thursday, and dare say I shall receive no small additional happiness from the perusal of yours of tomorrow - dear Girl how much I love you, War will bring peace and bye & bye we will live together enjoying the felicity & happiness of each others society 'till time [text loss] Walk us to immortal happiness, kiss my babe for me - & Beleive me to possess a sincere
affection for you as it is possible
for a mortal to do
HKnox
See More

People: Knox, Henry, 1750-1806
Knox, Lucy Flucker, 1756-1824

Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Subjects: Battle of Long Island (Brooklyn, Brooklyn Heights)MarriageRevolutionary WarRevolutionary War GeneralMilitary HistoryContinental ArmyArtilleryGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyBattle

Sub Era: The War for Independence

Order a Copy Citation Guidelines for Online Resources