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Knox, Henry (1750-1806) to Lucy Knox

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00661 Author/Creator: Knox, Henry (1750-1806) Place Written: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 29 October 1777 Pagination: 3 p. : address ; 33.6 x 21.2 cm.

Summary of Content: Discusses the attack by Hessian Colonel Count Carl von Donop against a redoubt at Red Bank, the site of Fort Mercer, along the Delaware River below Camden, New Jersey. Notes that Colonel Greene, from Rhode Island, defended the redoubt, and even wounded Count Donop. Also describes the British attack on Fort Mifflin, in Philadelphia. Writes, "if the enemy do not get possession of the river they cannot stay in Philadelphia with any ease- their convoys will be liable to be cut off & they blockaded..." Reports that "Billey," his brother William Knox, is doing well.

Full Transcript: Camp 10 miles from Philadelphia 29th October 1777
My dearest Lucy
I am unhappy that I do not hear from you post arrives after post and no letters from her I love ...to distraction. I have made so many conjectures upon this subject that I am weary of them and shall not give myself the trouble to write them to you - when we were on the other side of Schuylkill the letters were irregular, but on this side the post has arriv'd as punctual as in peace time. - Since my last to you which was on the 21st. the [struck: att] Enemy attempted to storm a redoubt of ours at Red bank on the Delaware a Count Donop commanded the party which consisted of 1200 or 1300 principally Hessian Grenadiers - a Colo Greene from Rhode Island with two [regts] from that place defended the redoubt - the action was severe for 40 minutes where the enemy gave way in all parts, leaving more than a 100 dead on the spot - 100 [inserted: most of them] mortaly wounded among which was Count Donop himself a man of great Consideration among the enemy - The remainder retreated with the utmost precipitation to Philadelphia with the [2] loss of more than half the party - The next morning the 23d instant 6 of the enemies ships came up the river and three of them engag'd our Gallies and battery at Fort Mifflin for 6 hours during which time there was a most infernal Cannonade - The enemy were beat back and two of their ships the Augusta a 64 Gunship & a frigate cannot learn her name ran aground & were burnt - to the great joy of the Americans - the rest retreated pretty quick and have made no advance since - The operations on the river grow more more important every moment - if the enemy do not get possesion of the river they cannot stay in Philadelphia with any ease - their convoys will be liable to be cut off & they blockaded - They must attempt to get posession of the River at any risque - and if they are again foiled - they will probably depart -
The Lustre of the northern Army quite eclipses us - but we have done our last [strikeout] "Great Garrick can do no more"
If the people of America makes a proper use of the advantages put into their hands and exert themselves in proportion to the magnitude of the object the next campaign will probably terminate [3] her troubles -
Do you know if God spares me that I am determin'd to see you this winter at all events if it can possibly be consistent with my duty? Yes - & I think my duty will [doubly] call me to Springfield - May God bless you my dear & your babe - write me I beg you often - Billey is well and a saucy dog for not writing you - I am with the utmost purity of affection your faithful
H Knox
[address leaf]
Novo: 1 Morristown
Mrs. Lucy Knox
Boston
See More

People: Knox, Henry, 1750-1806
Knox, Lucy Flucker, 1756-1824
Donop, Carl Emil von, - 1777
Knox, William, 1756-1795

Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Subjects: Revolutionary WarRevolutionary War GeneralMilitary HistoryBattleFortificationGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyGlobal History and US Foreign PolicyHessiansInjury or WoundBlockadeNavy

Sub Era: The War for Independence

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