Battle of Bound Brook
The Battle of Bound Brook was a surprise attack conducted by British and Hessian forces against a Continental Army outpost at Bound Brook, New Jersey during the American Revolutionary War. The British objective of capturing the entire garrison was not met; the U. S. commander, Major General Benjamin Lincoln, left in great haste, abandoning papers and personal effects. Late on the evening of April 12, 1777, four thousand British and Hessian troops under the command of Lieutenant General Charles Cornwallis marched from the British stronghold of New Brunswick. All but one detachment reached positions surrounding the outpost before the battle began near daybreak the next morning. During the battle, most of the 500-man garrison escaped by the unblocked route. U. S. reinforcements arrived in the afternoon, but not before the British plundered the outpost and began the return march to New Brunswick. Following the Battles of Trenton and Princeton in December 1776 and January 1777, the Continental Army of Major General George Washington entered winter quarters in Morristown, New Jersey, while the British and German forces of Lieutenant General William Howe settled into winter quarters in New York City and northeastern New Jersey.
Throughout the winter months, a guerrilla war of sorts went on, in which American militia companies, sometimes with Continental Army support, harassed British and German outposts and ambushed their foraging and raiding expeditions. One of the forward bases used for these operations was at Bound Brook, located on the Raritan River upriver from New Brunswick, the major British camp in New Jersey; the post was responsible for patrolling three bridges across the Raritan to be used by the British in moves against the main camp at Morristown. In February 1777, the Bound Brook outpost consisted of 1,000 men under the command of Major General Benjamin Lincoln, but this was reduced by expiring militia enlistments to 500 in mid-March; the troops that remained were from the 8th Pennsylvania Regiment, a company from the 4th Continental Artillery, two independent companies from the Wyoming Valley in what is now northeastern Pennsylvania, but was also claimed by Connecticut as Westmoreland County. Lincoln expressed concern over his exposed position to General Washington, noting that many units were not in a position to "render the least assistance to this post in case it is attacked", that he was keeping wagons ready in case a precipitate departure was needed.
Lieutenant General Lord Charles Cornwallis, in command of the British forces in New Jersey, had had enough of the ongoing petite guerre, organized a reprisal action against the Bound Brook outpost. According to the Hessian jäger Captain Johann Ewald, Cornwallis asked him to draft a plan of attack on February 12, after the Battle of Quibbletown on February 8, but the plan could not be executed until springtime because it necessitated fording the Raritan. On the night of April 12, the plan was put into action. Under the overall command of Cornwallis, 4,000 British and Hessian troops marched from New Brunswick to make a multi-pronged surprise attack; the right flank, under the command of Major General James Grant, consisted of the Hessian jäger corps, grenadiers from the English Brigade of Guards, a detachment of British light dragoons. While most of this column advanced from Raritan Landing, two companies of light infantry went further right, aiming to cut off the main road from Bound Brook to the Continental Army camp at Morristown.
The center, under the command of Hessian colonel, Carl von Donop, consisted of the Hessian grenadier battalions von Linsing and Minnigerode, the left, commanded by Cornwallis, consisted of two battalions of British light infantry, the 1st battalion of grenadiers, another detachment of light dragoons. Donop's column advanced up the right bank of the Raritan, aiming to gain control of the bridge directly at Bound Brook, while Cornwallis took a longer route to ford the river above Bound Brook and thus cut off the possibility of retreat in that direction. Ewald and a few of his jägers were in the vanguard of Grant's column and engaged the American sentries to the south of Bound Brook. Unaware that this was supposed to be a feint, Ewald drove the sentries back nearly to the main redoubt where the outpost's cannons were located. By sunrise he was nearly surrounded; the surprise was nearly complete. Colonel von Donop reported that General Lincoln "must have retired en Profond Négligé", Lincoln's papers were taken.
The British plan was marred by the early skirmishing involving Ewald, the too-late arrival of the companies sent to cut off the road to Morristown. The British captured cannons and supplies, looted Bound Brook, but returned to New Brunswick that morning; the Continental Army response was immediate. The British had left by the time they arrived; this detachment caught up with the British near Raritan Landing, where they killed 8 and captured 16. General Howe reported that about 30 Americans were killed and 80 to 90 were captured, while General Lincoln reported that 60 of his men were killed or wounded. Howe claimed no seven wounded among the British and Hessians. Washington reported that "he
The Conway Cabal was a group of senior Continental Army officers in late 1777 and early 1778 who aimed to have George Washington replaced as commander-in-chief of the Army during the American Revolutionary War. It was named after Brigadier General Thomas Conway, whose letters criticizing Washington were forwarded to the Second Continental Congress; when these suggestions were made public, supporters of Washington mobilized to assist him politically. Conway ended up resigning from the army, General Horatio Gates, a leading candidate to replace Washington, issued an apology for his role in events. No formal requests were made asking for Washington's removal as commander in chief. There was no sign of any formal conspiracy amongst the various malcontents, although Washington was concerned that there might be one, it was the only major political threat to Washington's command during the war. In the fall of 1777 forces of the British Army captured Philadelphia, the seat of the Second Continental Congress, forced to relocate to York, Pennsylvania.
The series of military setbacks caused many in the Continental Army and Congress to question George Washington's leadership of the war effort. In contrast, the northern army of General Horatio Gates had won a signal victory over John Burgoyne's forces, compelling Burgoyne to surrender his entire army after the Battles of Saratoga. Gates controversially claimed credit for the victory; some historians feel that this was more due to the actions of Benedict Arnold, who, in the first battle on September 19 and independently defended his forces against British assaults. It was alleged that Gates had failed to provide Arnold with adequate reinforcements which would have turned the battle into an outright American victory, although there is not universal agreement on this matter. Gates was politically well connected to Congress; some congressmen such as Richard Henry Lee, John Adams, Samuel Adams wanted tighter Congressional control of the war effort and supported Gates. Although John Adams did not call for Washington to be replaced, he worried that Washington was being made into a military idol, was fearful of the effects of this upon republicanism.
Military custom dictated that, after Saratoga, Gates would have sent his official report to Washington, his immediate superior. However, Gates sent his report directly to Congress. Washington sent his staff officer, Colonel Alexander Hamilton, to meet Gates and tell him on Washington's behalf to send three of his brigades to Washington's troops outside Philadelphia; the logic was that Washington required more troops to fight General William Howe's British Army, which had just taken the capital, whereas Gates had no major British force to contend with. Gates suggested that another British detachment might invade, he agreed to send only one 600-man brigade, which Hamilton discovered was the weakest of the three requested. Hamilton exacted a promise from Gates to send two brigades. At the same time, Gates wrote to Washington. "Conspiracy" is too strong a term to use in describing varied actions taken by disaffected officers and Congressional delegates unhappy with the course of the war. Most of those involved shared the view only that Washington was a less-than-perfect commander in chief, few of their activities were coordinated.
General Gates was used as a stalking horse to replace Washington, had himself engaged in some lobbying for the command, but he was not responsible for the strong response within the Congress. Opposition to Washington's command in Pennsylvania was anchored by Thomas Mifflin, a former Congressional delegate and a former quartermaster of the Continental Army who had worked with Washington, his view of Washington as a rank amateur was supported by Lee, Benjamin Rush, others. A number of French officers, commissioned into the Continental Army were critical of Washington; these notably included Johann de Kalb, Louis Lebègue Duportail, Thomas Conway. Thomas Conway was an Irishman, educated in France and had served in its military. Recruited by American diplomat Silas Deane, he arrived at Washington's headquarters in Morristown, New Jersey in the spring of 1777. With Washington's support, Congress made him a brigadier general in the Continental Army, he served with some distinction under Washington during the Philadelphia campaign.
His time in combat included distinguished service at Germantown. In October 1777, Conway began lobbying Congress for a promotion to major general, including in his writings criticisms of Washington. Washington in turn had grown to distrust Conway, finding his personal conduct arrogant and unbearable. Conway had publicly admitted that his desire for promotion was rooted in the fact that if he became a major general in the Continental Army, he could become a brigadier general once he returned to the French service. Washington opposed Conway's promotion, as he felt there were many American-born officers senior in rank to Conway and more deserving of promotion who would be upset by such a move, he identified Conway as someone "without conspicuous merit" and that his promotion would "give a fatal blow to the existence of the army." He continued adding, "It will be impossible for me to be of any further service if such insuperable difficulties are thrown in my way." This was seen as an implicit threat to resign.
As part of Conway's efforts at self-prom
Southern theater of the American Revolutionary War
The Southern theatre of the American Revolutionary War was the central area of operations in North America in the second half of the American Revolutionary War. During the first three years of the conflict, the largest military encounters were in the north, focused on campaigns around the cities of Boston, New York, Philadelphia. After the failure of the Saratoga campaign, the British abandoned operations in the Middle Colonies and pursued peace through subjugation in the Southern Colonies. Before 1778, the southern colonies were dominated by Patriot-controlled governments and militias, although there was a Continental Army presence that played a role in the defense of Charleston in 1776, suppression of Loyalist militias, attempts to drive the British from Loyalist East Florida; the British "southern strategy" commenced in late 1778 with the capture of Savannah, followed in 1780 by operations in South Carolina that included the defeat of two Continental Armies at Charleston and Camden. General Nathanael Greene, who took over as Continental Army commander after Camden, engaged in a strategy of avoidance and attrition against the British.
The two forces fought a string of battles. In all cases, the "victories" strategically weakened the British army by the high cost in casualties, while leaving the Continental Army intact to continue fighting; this was best exemplified by the Battle of Guilford Courthouse. Several American victories, such as the Battle of Ramseur's Mill, the Battle of Cowpens, the Battle of Kings Mountain served to weaken the overall British military strength; the culminating engagement, the Siege of Yorktown, ended with the British army's surrender. It marked the end of British power in the Colonies. In most colonies British officials departed as the Patriots took control. In Virginia, the royal governor resisted. In the Gunpowder Incident of April 20, 1775, Lord Dunmore, the Royal Governor of Virginia, removed gunpowder stored in Williamsburg to a British warship in the James River. Dunmore saw rising unrest in the colony and was trying to deprive Virginia militia of supplies needed for insurrection. Patriot militia led by Patrick Henry forced Dunmore to pay for the gunpowder.
Dunmore continued to hunt for caches of military equipment and supplies in the following months, acts that were sometimes anticipated by Patriot militia, who would move supplies before his arrival. Dunmore issued an emancipation proclamation in November 1775, promising freedom to runaway slaves who fought for the British. After an incident at Kemp's Landing in November where Dunmore's troops killed and captured Patriot militiamen, Patriot forces defeated Loyalist troops at the Battle of Great Bridge on December 9. Dunmore and his troops retreated to Royal Navy ships anchored off Norfolk. Patriot forces in the town completed the destruction of the former Loyalist stronghold. Dunmore was driven from an island in Chesapeake Bay that summer, never returned to Virginia. Georgia's royal governor, James Wright, nominally remained in power until January 1776, when the unexpected arrival of British ships near Savannah prompted the local Committee of Safety to order his arrest. Georgia Patriots and Loyalists alike believed the fleet had arrived to provide military support to the governor.
Wright reached the fleet. In the Battle of the Rice Boats in early March, the British left Savannah with a number of merchant vessels containing the desired rice supplies. South Carolina's population was politically divided; the lowland communities, dominated by Charleston, were Patriot in their views, while the back country held a large number of Loyalist sympathizers. By August 1775, both sides were recruiting militia companies. In September, Patriot militia seized Fort Johnson, Charleston's major defense works, Governor William Campbell fled to a Royal Navy ship in the harbor; the seizure by Loyalists of a shipment of gunpowder and ammunition intended for the Cherokee caused an escalation in tensions that led to the First Siege of Ninety Six in western South Carolina late November. Patriot recruiting was by outstripping that of the Loyalists, a major campaign involving as many as 5,000 Patriots led by Colonel Richard Richardson succeeded in capturing or driving away most of the Loyalist leadership.
Loyalists fled, either to the Cherokee lands. A faction of the Cherokee, known as the Chickamauga, rose up in support of the British and Loyalists in 1776, they were defeated by militia forces from North and South Carolina. Crucial in any British attempt to gain control of the South was the possession of a port to bring in supplies and men. To this end, the British organized an expedition to establish a strong post somewhere in the southern colonies, sent military leaders to recruit Loyalists in North Carolina; the expedition's departure from Europe was delayed, the Loyalist force, recruited to meet it was decisively defeated in the Battle of Moore's Creek Bridge in late February 1776. When General Henry Clinton arrived at Cape Fear, North Carolina, in May, he found conditions there unsuitable for a strong post. Scouting by the Royal Navy identified Charleston, whose defenses were unfinished and seemed vulnerable, as a more suitable location. In June 1776, Clinton and Admiral Sir Peter Parker led an assault on Fort Sullivan
Battle of Fort Washington
The Battle of Fort Washington was a battle fought in New York on November 16, 1776 during the American Revolutionary War between the United States and Great Britain. It was a British victory that gained the surrender of the remnant of the garrison of Fort Washington near the north end of Manhattan Island, it was one of the worst Patriot defeats of the war. After defeating the Continental Army under Commander-in-Chief General George Washington at the Battle of White Plains, the British Army forces under the command of Lieutenant General William Howe planned to capture Fort Washington, the last American stronghold on Manhattan. General Washington issued a discretionary order to General Nathanael Greene to abandon the fort and remove its garrison – numbering 1,200 men but which to grow to 3,000 – to New Jersey. Colonel Robert Magaw, commanding the fort, declined to abandon it as he believed it could be defended from the British. Howe's forces attacked the fort. Howe launched his attack on November 16.
He led an assault from three sides: the north and south. Tides in the Harlem River delayed the attack; when the British moved against the defenses, the southern and western American defenses fell quickly. Patriot forces on the north side offered stiff resistance to the Hessian attack, but they too were overwhelmed. With the fort surrounded by land and sea, Colonel Magaw chose to surrender. A total of 59 Americans were killed and 2,837 were taken as prisoners of war. After this defeat, most of Washington's army was chased across New Jersey and into Pennsylvania, the British consolidated their control of New York and eastern New Jersey. During the American Revolutionary War, Fort Washington was located at the highest point of the island of Manhattan, along a large outcropping of Manhattan schist near its northernmost tip. Along with Fort Lee, located just across the Hudson River atop the New Jersey Palisades, the twin forts were intended to protect the lower Hudson from British warships. In June 1776, American Patriot officers Henry Knox, Nathanael Greene, William Heath, Israel Putnam examined the terrain on which Fort Washington would be located.
In June, the Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army, George Washington, inspected the location and determined that the area was the key to defense of the lower Hudson. Shortly after Washington's survey, troops from Pennsylvania began construction on the fort under the supervision of Rufus Putnam, they first prepared a cheval de frise to prevent British ships from sailing up the Hudson and outflanking the U. S. position. For more than a month, the troops transported boulders from the heights of Manhattan to the edge of the river, where they loaded them into a collection of hulks and cribs made of timber and stretched it across the river; when the cheval de frise was finished, they began work on the fort. Little soil covered the rocky surface, so men had to haul soil up from the low ground, they were unable to dig the customary trenches around the fort. The fort was built in the shape of a pentagon with five bastions; the main walls were made of earth, constructed with ravelins with openings for guns from every angle.
The fort enclosed a total of three to four acres. The troops built an abbattis around the fort. After the barracks were finished in September, all the troops in the area were placed under the command of Major General William Heath. Washington established his headquarters near the fort. Supporting the fort were numerous defenses. Batteries were placed on Jeffrey's Hook, which extended into the Hudson, on Cox's Hill looking over Spuyten Duyvil Creek, at the north end of Manhattan controlling the King's Bridge and Dyckman's Bridge over the Harlem River and along Laurel Hill, to the east of the Fort and went along the Harlem River. To the south of the fort were three lines of defense; the lines were made of trenches and foxholes. The first line was supported by a second line about 0.33 mi to the north, a third line was planned to be built 0.25 mi north of the second. British General William Howe, after first gaining control of western Long Island in the Battle of Long Island at the end of August 1776, launched an invasion of Manhattan on September 15.
His northward progress was checked the next day in the Battle of Harlem Heights, after which he sought to flank the strong U. S. position on the north of the island. After an abortive landing attempt on October 11, Howe began landing troops in southern Westchester County, New York on October 18, intending to cut off the Continental Army's avenue of retreat. Washington, aware of the danger, withdrew most of his troops north to White Plains, he left a garrison of 1,200 men at Fort Washington under the command of Colonel Robert Magaw. In order to monitor the U. S. garrison in the fort, Howe left a small force below Harlem Heights. On the morning of October 27, sentries informed Magaw that Percy's troops were launching an attack supported by two frigates sailing up the Hudson. Magaw ordered an attack on the frigates, both British ships were badly damaged by the guns from Fort Lee and Fort Washington; the frigates could not elevate their own guns to the height of the U. S. positions. The British towed away the frigates, but an artillery duel continued for some time between British and U.
S. gunners. On November 8, about two dozen U. S. soldiers drove off a larger Hessian company from a forward redoubt. The Hessians held higher ground with better cover and had the advantage of artillery support
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
George Weedon was an American soldier during the Revolutionary War from Fredericksburg, Colony of Virginia. He served as a brigadier general in the Continental Army and in the Virginia militia. Weedon served as a lieutenant under George Washington in the French and Indian War assigned to garrison duty in western Virginia. After the war, he opened a tavern, it was within Weedon's tavern that Thomas Jefferson in January 1777 wrote the Statute of Religious Freedom. In 1775, he was made a lieutenant second in command to Hugh Mercer, they were tasked with creating Virginia Line, Continental Army. He was succeeded Mercer in command of his regiment. On Mercer's death at Princeton, Weedon was promoted to brigadier general in 1777 and again succeeded him, he fought in the Battles of Trenton and Germantown. At Valley Forge, Weedon commanded a brigade in Nathanael Greene's division, his brigade included Stewart's 13th Pennsylvania Regiment along with the 2nd, 6th, 10th, 14th Virginia regiments. In 1778, he resigned after a dispute with the Congress over seniority.
He went home to Virginia to lead a brigade of the state's militia at the request of Governor Thomas Jefferson. He led his militia unit in the Yorktown campaign, where his brigade repelled the feared and infamous unit of Colonel Banastre Tarleton, thus closing the one means of British escape at Gloucester Point. George Weedon at Find a Grave, retrieved September 7, 2014 Yorktown Battlefield: Brigadier General George Weedon at National Park Service, retrieved September 7, 2014 George Weedon at George Washington's Mount Vernon, retrieved September 7, 2014 This Day in History: George Weedon is Promoted to Brigadier General at History.com, retrieved September 7, 2014
Hugh Mercer was a Scottish soldier and physician. He served with the Jacobite forces of Bonnie Prince Charlie, with the British forces during the Seven Years' War, but became a brigadier general in the Continental Army and a close friend to George Washington. Mercer died as a result of his wounds received at the Battle of Princeton and became a fallen hero as well as a rallying symbol of the American Revolution. Mercer was born near Rosehearty, at the manse of Pitsligo Kirk, Scotland, to Church of Scotland minister Reverend William Mercer of Pitsligo Parish Kirk and Ann Monro. At 15, he attended the University of Aberdeen, Marischal College, studying medicine and graduated a Doctor, he was assistant surgeon in the army of Bonnie Prince Charlie in 1745, was present at the Battle of Culloden when Charles' army was crushed on 16 April 1746, many survivors were hunted down and killed. As a fugitive in his own homeland in 1747, Mercer fled Scotland after months in hiding, he bought his way onto a ship and moved to America, settling near what is now Mercersburg and practiced medicine for eight years.
In 1755, when General Edward Braddock's army was cut down by the French and Indians during the first British attempt to take Fort Duquesne, Mercer was shocked by the same butchery he remembered at Culloden. He came to the aid of the wounded and took up arms in support of the army that a few years prior had hunted him, this time as a soldier, not a surgeon. By 1756, he was commissioned a captain in a Pennsylvania regiment, accompanied Lt. Col. John Armstrong's expedition on the raid of the Indian village of Kitanning in September 1756. During the attack, Mercer was badly separated from his unit, he trekked 100 miles through the woods for fourteen days and with no supplies, until he found his way back to Fort Shirley, where he was recognized and promoted. He rose to the rank of commanded garrisons, it was during this period that Mercer developed a lifelong and warm friendship with another colonel, George Washington. Both Washington and Mercer served under British General John Forbes during the second attempt to capture Fort Duquesne.
Forbes occupied the burned fort on 25 November 1758. Forbes ordered the construction of a new fortification to be named Fort Pitt, after British Secretary of State William Pitt the Elder, he named the settlement between the rivers "Pittsburgh", modern Pittsburgh. Forbes's health, poor for much of the campaign, began a rapid decline during his occupation of Fort Pitt. On 3 December 1758, now gravely ill, Forbes began the arduous journey back to Philadelphia leaving Colonel Hugh Mercer in command of Fort Pitt. General Forbes died in Philadelphia on 11 March 1759, he was buried in Christ Church in Philadelphia. Mercer's first task was to construct a temporary fort to hold the two forks of the Ohio in case the French were able to execute their plans to return in the Spring of 1759. Drawings of the time call this temporary fortification "Mercer's Fort." It stood at the site of what is today a parking lot between Point State Park and the Pittsburgh Post Gazette Building. After befriending several Virginia men, Mercer moved to Fredericksburg, Virginia in 1760 to begin his medical practice anew at the conclusion of the war.
When Mercer arrived in Fredericksburg, it was a thriving Scottish community that must have been a happy sanctuary for a Scotsman who could never again see his homeland. He became a noted businessman in town, buying land and involving himself in local trade, he became a member of the Fredericksburg Masonic Lodge in 1767, sat as its Master a few years later. Two members of this same lodge and James Monroe, would become American Presidents, at least eight members were generals of the American Revolution Soon after this, Mercer opened a physician's apothecary and practice, his apothecary in Fredericksburg, Virginia is now a museum. George Washington's mother, Mary Washington, became one of Mercer's patients, Mercer prospered as a respected doctor in the area. Mercer married Isabella Gordon and fathered five children: Ann Mercer Patton, John Mercer, William Mercer, George Weedon Mercer, Hugh Tennant Mercer. In 1774, George Washington sold Ferry Farm, his childhood home, to Mercer, who wanted to make this prized land into a town where he and his family would settle for the remainder of his days.
During 1775, Mercer was a member of the Fredericksburg Committee of Safety, on 25 April he was one of the members of the Independent Company of the Town of Fredericksburg who sent a letter of concern to then-Colonel George Washington when the British removed gunpowder from the magazine at Williamsburg. In an August vote, Mercer was excluded from the elected leadership of the new regiments formed by the Virginia Convention because he was a "northern Briton," but on 12 September he was elected Colonel of the Minute Men of Spotsylvania, King George and Caroline Counties. On 17 November Mercer was one of 21 members chosen for the Committee of Safety of Spotsylvania County. On 11 January 1776, Mercer was appointed colonel to what soon became the 3rd Virginia Regiment of the Virginia Line, the next day George Weedon was appointed lieutenant colonel. Future president James Monroe and future Chief Justice of the United States John Marshall served as officers under his command. In June 1776 Mercer received a letter from the Continental Congress, signe