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At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 65,000 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.

Greene, Nathanael (1742-1786) to Henry Knox

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.00488 Author/Creator: Greene, Nathanael (1742-1786) Place Written: Fort Lee, New Jersey Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 17 November 1776 Pagination: 1

Summary of Content: Dated November 1776; date of 17 November inferred from content. Reports that Fort Washington has been captured by the British, and that the Americans have "lost" between 2,000 to 3,000 soldiers. The American generals, including Washington, Palmer, Mercer and Greene, had been discussing abandoning the Fort when the British troops arrived and attacked. Describes the British attack on the fort, and the American retreat. Thinks the British may have taken a number of casualties, but bemoans the loss of the fort as a "terrible event its consequences are justly to be dreaded," and asks Knox for support as a friend.

People: Knox, Henry, 1750-1806.
Greene, Nathanael, 1742-1786.
Palmer, Joseph, 1716-1788.
Mercer, Hugh, ca. 1725-1777.

Historical Era: American Revolution, 1763-1783

Keywords/Subjects: Fortification Revolutionary War, Revolutionary War General, Military History, Children and Family, Global History and US Foreign Policy, Global History and US Foreign Policy, Fortification

Sub Era: The War for Independence