Princeton, New Jersey
Princeton is a municipality with a borough form of government in Mercer County, New Jersey, United States, established in its current form on January 1, 2013, through the consolidation of the Borough of Princeton and Princeton Township. As of the 2010 United States Census, the municipality's population was 28,572, reflecting the former township's population of 16,265, along with the 12,307 in the former borough. Princeton was founded before the American Revolution, it is the home of Princeton University, which bears its name and moved to the community in 1756 from its previous location in Newark. Although its association with the university is what makes Princeton a college town, other important institutions in the area include the Institute for Advanced Study, Westminster Choir College, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton Theological Seminary, Opinion Research Corporation, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Siemens Corporate Research, SRI International, FMC Corporation, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Amrep and Dwight, Berlitz International, Dow Jones & Company.
Princeton is equidistant from New York City and Philadelphia. It is close to many major highways that serve both cities, receives major television and radio broadcasts from each, it is close to Trenton, New Jersey's capital city, Edison. The New Jersey governor's official residence has been in Princeton since 1945, when Morven in what was Princeton Borough became the first Governor's mansion, it was replaced by the larger Drumthwacket, a colonial mansion located in the former Township. Morven became a museum property of the New Jersey Historical Society. Princeton was ranked 15th of the top 100 towns in the United States to Live and Work In by Money Magazine in 2005. Throughout much of its history, the community was composed of two separate municipalities: a township and a borough; the central borough was surrounded by the township. The borough seceded from the township in 1894 in a dispute over school taxes. Princeton Borough contained Nassau Street, the main commercial street, most of the University campus, incorporated most of the urban area until the postwar suburbanization.
The borough and township had equal populations. The Lenni Lenape Native Americans were the earliest identifiable inhabitants of the Princeton area. Europeans founded their settlement in the late part of the 17th century; the first European to find his home in the boundaries of the future town was Henry Greenland. He built his house in 1683 along with a tavern. In this drinking hole representatives of West Jersey and East Jersey met to set boundaries for the location of the township. Princeton was known only as part of nearby Stony Brook. Nathaniel Fitz Randolph, a native of the town, attested in his private journal on December 28, 1758, that Princeton was named in 1724 upon the making/construction of the first house in the area by James Leonard, who first referred to the town as Princetown when describing the location of his large estate in his diary; the town bore a variety of names subsequently, including: Princetown, Prince's Town and Princeton. Although there is no official documentary backing, the town is considered to be named after King William III, Prince William of Orange of the House of Nassau.
Another theory suggests that the name came from a large land-owner named Henry Prince, but no evidence backs this contention. A royal prince seems a more eponym for the settlement, as three nearby towns had similar names: Kingston and Princessville; when Richard Stockton, one of the founders of the township, died in 1709 he left his estate to his sons, who helped to expand property and the population. Based on the 1880 United States Census, the population of the town comprised 3,209 persons. Local population has expanded from the nineteenth century. According to the 2010 Census, Princeton Borough had 12,307 inhabitants, while Princeton Township had 16,265; the numbers have become stagnant. Aside from housing the university of the same name, the settlement suffered the revolutionary Battle of Princeton in 1777, when George Washington forced the British to evacuate southern New Jersey. After the victory, the town hosted the first Legislature under the State Constitution to decide the State's seal and organization of its government.
In addition, two of the original signers of the Declaration of Independence—Richard Stockton and John Witherspoon lived in Princeton. Princetonians honored their citizens' legacy by naming two streets in the downtown area after them. On January 10, 1938 Henry Ewing Hale called for a group of citizens to discuss opening a "Historical Society of Princeton." The Bainbridge House would be dedicated for this purpose. The house was used once for a meeting of Continental Congress in 1783, a general office, as the Princeton Public Library; the House is owned by Princeton University and is leased to the Princeton Historical Society for one dollar per year. The house has kept its original staircase and paneled walls. Around 70% of the house has been unaltered. Aside from safety features such as wheelchair access and electrical work, the house was has been restored to its original look. During the most stirring events in its history, Princeton was a wide spot in the ro
Independence Hall is the building where both the United States Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were debated and adopted. It is now the centerpiece of the Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; the building was completed in 1753 as the Pennsylvania State House, served as the capitol for the Province and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania until the state capital moved to Lancaster in 1799. It became the principal meeting place of the Second Continental Congress from 1775 to 1783 and was the site of the Constitutional Convention in the summer of 1787. A convention held in Independence Hall in 1915, presided over by former US president William Howard Taft, marked the formal announcement of the formation of the League to Enforce Peace, which led to the League of Nations and the United Nations; the building is part of Independence National Historical Park and is listed as a World Heritage Site. By the spring of 1729, the citizens of Philadelphia were petitioning to be allowed to build a state house.
2,000 pounds were committed to the endeavor. A committee composed of Thomas Lawrence, Dr. John Kearsley, Andrew Hamilton was charged with the responsibility of selecting a site for construction, acquiring plans for the building, contracting a company for construction of the building. Hamilton and William Allen were named trustees of the purchasing and building fund and authorized to buy the land that would be the site of the state house. By October 1730 they had begun purchasing lots on Chestnut Street. By 1732 though Hamilton had acquired the deed for Lot no. 2 from surveyor David Powell, paid for his work with the lot, tensions were rising among the committee members. Dr. John Kearsley and Hamilton disagreed on a number of issues concerning the state house. Kearsley, credited with the designs of both Christ Church and St. Peter's Church, had plans for the structure of the building, but so did Hamilton; the two men disagreed on the building's site. Lawrence said nothing on the matter. Matters reached a point.
On August 8, 1733, Hamilton brought the matter before the House of Representatives. He explained that Kearsley did not approve of Hamilton's plans for the location and architecture of the state house and went on to insist the House had not agreed to these decisions. In response to this, Hamilton, on August 11, showed his plans for the state house to the House, who accepted them. On August 14, the House sided with Hamilton, granting him full control over the project, the site on the south side of Chestnut Street between Fifth and Sixth Streets was chosen for the location of the state house. Ground was broken for construction soon after. Independence Hall touts a red brick facade, designed in Georgian style, it consists of a central building with belltower and steeple, attached to two smaller wings via arcaded hyphens. The highest point to the tip of the steeple spire is 7 1⁄4 inches above the ground; the State House was built between 1732 and 1751, designed by Edmund Woolley and Andrew Hamilton, built by Woolley.
Its construction was commissioned by the Pennsylvania colonial legislature which paid for construction as funds were available, so it was finished piecemeal. It was inhabited by the colonial government of Pennsylvania as its State House, from 1732 to 1799. In 1752, when Isaac Norris was selecting a man to build the first clock for the State House, today known as Independence Hall, he chose Thomas Stretch, the son of Peter Stretch his old friend and fellow council member, to do the job. In 1753 Thomas Stretch erected a giant clock at the building's west end; the 40-foot-tall limestone base was capped with a 14-foot wooden case surrounding the clock's face, carved by Samuel Harding. The giant clock was removed about 1830; the clock's dials were mounted at the east and west ends of the main building connected by rods to the clock movement in the middle of the building. The acquisition of the original clock and bell by the Pennsylvania Colonial Assembly is related to the acquisition of the Liberty Bell.
By mid-1753, the clock had been installed in the State House attic, but six years were to elapse before Thomas Stretch received any pay for it. While the shell of the central portion of the building is original, the side wings and much of the interior were reconstructed. In 1781, the Pennsylvania Assembly had the wooden steeple removed from the main building; the steeple had rotted and weakened to a dangerous extent by 1773, but it wasn't until 1781 that the Assembly had it removed and had the brick tower covered with a hipped roof. The original steeple was demolished due to structural problems in 1781. A more elaborate steeple, designed by William Strickland, was added in 1828; the original wings and hyphens were demolished and replaced in 1812. In 1898, these were in turn replaced with reconstructions of the original wings; the building was renovated numerous times in the 20th century. The current interior is a mid-20th century reconstruction by the National Park Service with the public rooms restored to their 18th century appearance.
During the summer of 1973 a replica of the Thomas Stretch clock was restored to Independence Hall. The second floor Governor's Council Chamber, furnished with important examples of the era by the National Park Service, includes a musical tall case clock made by Peter Stretch, c 1740, one of the most prominent clockmakers in early America and father of Thomas Stretch. Two smaller buildings adjoin the wings of Independence Hall: Old City Hall to the east, Congress Hall to the west; these three buildings are togeth
William Heath was an American farmer and political leader from Massachusetts who served as a major general in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. Heath made his home for his entire life at his family's farm in Massachusetts, he was born on a farm, settled in 1636 by his ancestors. He became active in the militia, was a captain of the Roxbury Company of the Suffolk County militia regiment in 1760. By 1770 he was its commanding officer. In 1765 he was elected as a member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts and was elected as the Company's lieutenant in 1768 and as its captain in 1770. In December 1774 the revolutionary government in Massachusetts commissioned him as a brigadier general, he commanded Massachusetts forces during the last stage of the Battle of Lexington and Concord in April 1775. As the siege of Boston began, Heath devoted himself to training the militia involved in the siege. In June of that year, Massachusetts named him a major general in the state troops, the Continental Congress commissioned him a brigadier general in the newly formed Continental Army.
In 1776 Heath participated in the defense of New York City, was one of those who urged General Washington not to abandon the city. He saw action at Long Island, Harlem Heights, White Plains. In August 1776 he was promoted to major general in the Continental Army, but Washington had doubts about Heath's abilities and posted him where no action was expected. In November he was placed in command of forces in the Hudson River Highlands. In January 1777, Washington instructed Heath to attack Fort Independence in New York in support of Washington's actions at Trenton and Princeton, but Heath's attack was botched and his troops were routed, he was censured by Washington and thereafter was never given command of troops in combat. General Heath was placed in charge of the Convention Army of John Burgoyne’s surrendered troops after the Battle of Saratoga. In 1780 he returned to command the Highland Department after Benedict Arnold’s treason. Heath was listed as an original member of the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnati.
After the war, Heath was a member of the Massachusetts Convention that ratified the United States Constitution in 1788. He served in the state Senate 1791–1792, as a probate court judge. In 1806 he declined the office, he died at home in Roxbury on January 24, 1814, was buried nearby in Forest Hills Cemetery The town of Heath, Massachusetts, is named in his honor. Boatner, Mark Mayo, III. Encyclopedia of the American Revolution. Revised ed. New York: McKay, 1974. ISBN 0-8117-0578-1. William Heath at Find a Grave Online Memoirs of Major General Heath @ Google Books
Virginia the Commonwealth of Virginia, is a state in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States located between the Atlantic Coast and the Appalachian Mountains. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" due to its status as the first English colonial possession established in mainland North America and "Mother of Presidents" because eight U. S. presidents were born there, more than any other state. The geography and climate of the Commonwealth are shaped by the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Chesapeake Bay, which provide habitat for much of its flora and fauna; the capital of the Commonwealth is Richmond. The Commonwealth's estimated population as of 2018 is over 8.5 million. The area's history begins with several indigenous groups, including the Powhatan. In 1607 the London Company established the Colony of Virginia as the first permanent New World English colony. Slave labor and the land acquired from displaced Native American tribes each played a significant role in the colony's early politics and plantation economy.
Virginia was one of the 13 Colonies in the American Revolution. In the American Civil War, Virginia's Secession Convention resolved to join the Confederacy, Virginia's First Wheeling Convention resolved to remain in the Union. Although the Commonwealth was under one-party rule for nearly a century following Reconstruction, both major national parties are competitive in modern Virginia; the Virginia General Assembly is the oldest continuous law-making body in the New World. The state government was ranked most effective by the Pew Center on the States in both 2005 and 2008, it is unique in how it treats cities and counties manages local roads, prohibits its governors from serving consecutive terms. Virginia's economy has many sectors: agriculture in the Shenandoah Valley. S. Department of Defense and Central Intelligence Agency. Virginia has a total area of 42,774.2 square miles, including 3,180.13 square miles of water, making it the 35th-largest state by area. Virginia is bordered by Maryland and Washington, D.
C. to the north and east. Virginia's boundary with Maryland and Washington, D. C. extends to the low-water mark of the south shore of the Potomac River. The southern border is defined as the 36° 30′ parallel north, though surveyor error led to deviations of as much as three arcminutes; the border with Tennessee was not settled until 1893, when their dispute was brought to the U. S. Supreme Court; the Chesapeake Bay separates the contiguous portion of the Commonwealth from the two-county peninsula of Virginia's Eastern Shore. The bay was formed from the drowned river valleys of the James River. Many of Virginia's rivers flow into the Chesapeake Bay, including the Potomac, Rappahannock and James, which create three peninsulas in the bay; the Tidewater is a coastal plain between the fall line. It includes major estuaries of Chesapeake Bay; the Piedmont is a series of sedimentary and igneous rock-based foothills east of the mountains which were formed in the Mesozoic era. The region, known for its heavy clay soil, includes the Southwest Mountains around Charlottesville.
The Blue Ridge Mountains are a physiographic province of the Appalachian Mountains with the highest points in the state, the tallest being Mount Rogers at 5,729 feet. The Ridge and Valley region includes the Great Appalachian Valley; the region includes Massanutten Mountain. The Cumberland Plateau and the Cumberland Mountains are in the southwest corner of Virginia, south of the Allegheny Plateau. In this region, rivers flow northwest, into the Ohio River basin; the Virginia Seismic Zone has not had a history of regular earthquake activity. Earthquakes are above 4.5 in magnitude, because Virginia is located away from the edges of the North American Plate. The largest earthquake, at an estimated 5.9 magnitude, was in 1897 near Blacksburg. A 5.8 magnitude earthquake struck central Virginia on August 2011, near Mineral. The earthquake was felt as far away as Toronto and Florida. 35 million years ago, a bolide impacted. The resulting Chesapeake Bay impact crater may explain what earthquakes and subsidence the region does experience.
Coal mining takes place in the three mountainous regions at 45 distinct coal beds near Mesozoic basins. Over 64 million tons of other non-fuel resources, such as slate, sand, or gravel, were mined in Virginia in 2018; the state's carbonate rock is filled with more than 4,000 caves, ten of which are open for tourism, including the popular Luray Caverns and Skyline Caverns. The climate of Virginia is humid subtropical and becomes warmer and more humid farther south and east. Seasonal extremes vary from average lows of 26 °F in January to average highs of 86 °F in July; the Atlantic Ocean has a strong effect on southeastern coastal areas of the state. Influenced by the Gulf Stream, coastal weather is subject to hurricanes, most pronouncedly near the mouth of Chesapeake Bay. In spite of its position adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean the coastal areas have a significant continental influence with quite large temperature differences between summ
Trenton, New Jersey
Trenton is the capital city of the U. S. state of New Jersey and the county seat of Mercer County. It served as the capital of the United States in 1784; the city's metropolitan area is grouped with the New York metropolitan area by the United States Census Bureau, but it directly borders the Philadelphia metropolitan area and is part of the Philadelphia Combined Statistical Area and the Federal Communications Commission's Philadelphia Designated Market Area. As of the 2010 United States Census, Trenton had a population of 84,913, making it the state's tenth most populous municipality; the Census Bureau estimated that the city's population was 84,034 in 2014. Trenton dates back at least to June 3, 1719, when mention was made of a constable being appointed for Trenton while the area was still part of Hunterdon County. Boundaries were recorded for Trenton Township as of March 2, 1720. A courthouse and jail were constructed in Trenton around 1720, the Freeholders of Hunterdon County met annually in Trenton.
Trenton became New Jersey's capital as of November 25, 1790, the City of Trenton was formed within Trenton Township on November 13, 1792. Trenton Township was incorporated as one of New Jersey's initial groups of 104 townships by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on February 21, 1798. On February 22, 1834, portions of Trenton Township were taken to form Ewing Township; the remaining portion of Trenton Township was absorbed by the City of Trenton on April 10, 1837. A series of annexations took place over a 50-year period, with the city absorbing South Trenton borough, portions of Nottingham Township, both the Borough of Chambersburg Township, Millham Township, as well as Wilbur Borough. Portions of Ewing Township and Hamilton Township were annexed to Trenton on March 23, 1900; the first settlement which would become Trenton was established by Quakers in 1679, in the region called the Falls of the Delaware, led by Mahlon Stacy from Handsworth, England. Quakers were being persecuted in England at this time and North America provided an opportunity to exercise their religious freedom.
By 1719, the town adopted the name "Trent-towne", after William Trent, one of its leading landholders who purchased much of the surrounding land from Stacy's family. This name was shortened to "Trenton". During the American Revolutionary War, the city was the site of the Battle of Trenton, George Washington's first military victory. On December 25–26, 1776, Washington and his army, after crossing the icy Delaware River to Trenton, defeated the Hessian troops garrisoned there. After the war, the Confederation Congress met in Trenton in November and December 1784. While the city was preferred by New England and other northern states as a permanent capital for the new country, the southern states prevailed in their choice of a location south of the Mason–Dixon line. Trenton became the state capital in 1790, but prior to that year the New Jersey Legislature met here; the city was incorporated in 1792. During the War of 1812, the United States Army's primary hospital was at a site on Broad Street. Throughout the 19th century, Trenton grew as European immigrants came to work in its pottery and wire rope mills.
In 1837, with the population now too large for government by council, a new mayoral government was adopted, with by-laws that remain in operation to this day. The Trenton Six were a group of black men arrested for murdering a white man with a soda bottle, they were arrested without warrants, denied lawyers, sentenced to death based on what were described as coerced confessions. With the involvement of the Communist Party and the NAACP, there were several appeals, resulting in a total of four trials; the accused men were released. The incident was the subject of the book Jersey Justice: The Story of the Trenton Six, written by Cathy Knepper; the Trenton Riots of 1968 were a major civil disturbance that took place during the week following the assassination of civil rights leader Martin Luther King in Memphis on April 4. Race riots broke out nationwide following the murder of the civil rights activist. More than 200 Trenton businesses in Downtown, were ransacked and burned. More than 300 people, most of them young black men, were arrested on charges ranging from assault and arson to looting and violating the mayor's emergency curfew.
In addition to 16 injured policemen, 15 firefighters were treated at city hospitals for smoke inhalation, burns and cuts suffered while fighting raging blazes or for injuries inflicted by rioters. Citizens of Trenton's urban core pulled false alarms and would throw bricks at firefighters responding to the alarm boxes; this experience, along with similar experiences in other major cities ended the use of open-cab fire engines. As an interim measure, the Trenton Fire Department fabricated temporary cab enclosures from steel deck plating until new equipment could be obtained; the losses incurred by downtown businesses were estimated by the city to be $7 million, but the total of insurance claims and settlements came to $2.5 million. Trenton's Battle Monument neighborhood was hardest hit. Since the 1950s, North Trenton had witnessed a steady exodus of middle-class residents, the riots spelled the end for North Trenton. By the 1970s, the region had become one of crime-ridden in the city. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city had a total area of 8.155 square miles, including 7.648 square miles of land and 0.507 square mile of water.
Several bridges across the Delaware River – the Trenton–Morrisville Toll Bridge, Lower Trenton Bridge
Washington, D. C. formally the District of Columbia and referred to as Washington or D. C. is the capital of the United States. Founded after the American Revolution as the seat of government of the newly independent country, Washington was named after George Washington, first President of the United States and Founding Father; as the seat of the United States federal government and several international organizations, Washington is an important world political capital. The city is one of the most visited cities in the world, with more than 20 million tourists annually; the signing of the Residence Act on July 16, 1790, approved the creation of a capital district located along the Potomac River on the country's East Coast. The U. S. Constitution provided for a federal district under the exclusive jurisdiction of the U. S. Congress, the District is therefore not a part of any state; the states of Maryland and Virginia each donated land to form the federal district, which included the pre-existing settlements of Georgetown and Alexandria.
The City of Washington was founded in 1791 to serve as the new national capital. In 1846, Congress returned the land ceded by Virginia. Washington had an estimated population of 702,455 as of July 2018, making it the 20th most populous city in the United States. Commuters from the surrounding Maryland and Virginia suburbs raise the city's daytime population to more than one million during the workweek. Washington's metropolitan area, the country's sixth largest, had a 2017 estimated population of 6.2 million residents. All three branches of the U. S. federal government are centered in the District: Congress and the U. S. Supreme Court. Washington is home to many national monuments, museums situated on or around the National Mall; the city hosts 177 foreign embassies as well as the headquarters of many international organizations, trade unions, non-profit, lobbying groups, professional associations, including the World Bank Group, the International Monetary Fund, the Organization of American States, AARP, the National Geographic Society, the Human Rights Campaign, the International Finance Corporation, the American Red Cross.
A locally elected mayor and a 13‑member council have governed the District since 1973. However, Congress may overturn local laws. D. C. residents elect a non-voting, at-large congressional delegate to the House of Representatives, but the District has no representation in the Senate. The District receives three electoral votes in presidential elections as permitted by the Twenty-third Amendment to the United States Constitution, ratified in 1961. Various tribes of the Algonquian-speaking Piscataway people inhabited the lands around the Potomac River when Europeans first visited the area in the early 17th century. One group known as the Nacotchtank maintained settlements around the Anacostia River within the present-day District of Columbia. Conflicts with European colonists and neighboring tribes forced the relocation of the Piscataway people, some of whom established a new settlement in 1699 near Point of Rocks, Maryland. In his Federalist No. 43, published January 23, 1788, James Madison argued that the new federal government would need authority over a national capital to provide for its own maintenance and safety.
Five years earlier, a band of unpaid soldiers besieged Congress while its members were meeting in Philadelphia. Known as the Pennsylvania Mutiny of 1783, the event emphasized the need for the national government not to rely on any state for its own security. Article One, Section Eight, of the Constitution permits the establishment of a "District as may, by cession of particular states, the acceptance of Congress, become the seat of the government of the United States". However, the Constitution does not specify a location for the capital. In what is now known as the Compromise of 1790, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson came to an agreement that the federal government would pay each state's remaining Revolutionary War debts in exchange for establishing the new national capital in the southern United States. On July 9, 1790, Congress passed the Residence Act, which approved the creation of a national capital on the Potomac River; the exact location was to be selected by President George Washington, who signed the bill into law on July 16.
Formed from land donated by the states of Maryland and Virginia, the initial shape of the federal district was a square measuring 10 miles on each side, totaling 100 square miles. Two pre-existing settlements were included in the territory: the port of Georgetown, founded in 1751, the city of Alexandria, founded in 1749. During 1791–92, Andrew Ellicott and several assistants, including a free African American astronomer named Benjamin Banneker, surveyed the borders of the federal district and placed boundary stones at every mile point. Many of the stones are still standing. A new federal city was constructed on the north bank of the Potomac, to the east of Georgetown. On September 9, 1791, the three commissioners overseeing the capital's construction named the city in honor of President Washington; the federal district was named Columbia, a poetic name for the United States in use at that time. Congress held its first session in Washington on November 17, 1800. Congress passed the District of Columbia Organic Act of 1801 that organized the District and placed the entire territory under the exclusive control of the federal
The Continental Army was formed by the Second Continental Congress after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the ex-British colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in their revolt against the rule of Great Britain; the Continental Army was supplemented by local militias and volunteer troops that remained under control of the individual states or were otherwise independent. General George Washington was the commander-in-chief of the army throughout the war. Most of the Continental Army was disbanded in 1783; the 1st and 2nd Regiments went on to form the nucleus of the Legion of the United States in 1792 under General Anthony Wayne. This became the foundation of the United States Army in 1796; the Continental Army consisted of soldiers from all 13 colonies and, after 1776, from all 13 states. When the American Revolutionary War began at the Battles of Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775, the colonial revolutionaries did not have an army.
Each colony had relied upon the militia, made up of part-time citizen-soldiers, for local defense, or the raising of temporary "provincial regiments" during specific crises such as the French and Indian War of 1754–63. As tensions with Great Britain increased in the years leading to the war, colonists began to reform their militias in preparation for the perceived potential conflict. Training of militiamen increased after the passage of the Intolerable Acts in 1774. Colonists such as Richard Henry Lee proposed forming a national militia force, but the First Continental Congress rejected the idea. On April 23, 1775, the Massachusetts Provincial Congress authorized the raising of a colonial army consisting of 26 company regiments. New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut soon raised similar but smaller forces. On June 14, 1775, the Second Continental Congress decided to proceed with the establishment of a Continental Army for purposes of common defense, adopting the forces in place outside Boston and New York.
It raised the first ten companies of Continental troops on a one-year enlistment, riflemen from Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia to be used as light infantry, who became the 1st Continental Regiment in 1776. On June 15, 1775, the Congress elected by unanimous vote George Washington as Commander-in-Chief, who accepted and served throughout the war without any compensation except for reimbursement of expenses. On July 18, 1775, the Congress requested all colonies form militia companies from "all able bodied effective men, between sixteen and fifty years of age." It was not uncommon for men younger than sixteen to enlist as most colonies had no requirement of parental consent for those under twenty-one. Four major-generals and eight brigadier-generals were appointed by the Second Continental Congress in the course of a few days. After Pomeroy did not accept, John Thomas was appointed in his place; as the Continental Congress adopted the responsibilities and posture of a legislature for a sovereign state, the role of the Continental Army became the subject of considerable debate.
Some Americans had a general aversion to maintaining a standing army. As a result, the army went through several distinct phases, characterized by official dissolution and reorganization of units. Soldiers in the Continental Army were citizens who had volunteered to serve in the army, at various times during the war, standard enlistment periods lasted from one to three years. Early in the war the enlistment periods were short, as the Continental Congress feared the possibility of the Continental Army evolving into a permanent army; the army never numbered more than 17,000 men. Turnover proved a constant problem in the winter of 1776–77, longer enlistments were approved. Broadly speaking, Continental forces consisted of several successive armies, or establishments: The Continental Army of 1775, comprising the initial New England Army, organized by Washington into three divisions, six brigades, 38 regiments. Major General Philip Schuyler's ten regiments in New York were sent to invade Canada; the Continental Army of 1776, reorganized after the initial enlistment period of the soldiers in the 1775 army had expired.
Washington had submitted recommendations to the Continental Congress immediately after he had accepted the position of Commander-in-Chief, but the Congress took time to consider and implement these. Despite attempts to broaden the recruiting base beyond New England, the 1776 army remained skewed toward the Northeast both in terms of its composition and of its geographical focus; this army consisted of 36 regiments, most standardized to a single battalion of 768 men strong and formed into eight companies, with a rank-and-file strength of 640. The Continental Army of 1777–80 evolved out of several critical reforms and political decisions that came about when it became apparent that the British were sending massive forces to put an end to the American Revolution; the Continental Congress passed the "Eighty-eight Battalion Resolve", ordering each state to contribute one-battalion regiments in proportion to their population, Washington subsequently received authority to raise an additional 16 battalions.
Enlistment terms extended to three years or to "the length of the war" to avoid the year-end crises that deplet