Monday, April 4, 2011

Liberty Day History Display from 2010--pt. 7

The Battle of Long Island

He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them that hated me: for they were too strong for me. (2 Samuel 22:18, KJV)

The providential hand of God Almighty can be seen in times of advancing victory, as well as in times of retreating defeat. The Battle of Long Island was a decisive British triumph and yet God’s omnipotent hand led the American troops in their escape, preventing further casualties. It was August 1776 and the situation was bleak for the American troops as they were outnumbered by the British forces by a 2 to 1 margin. After suffering heavy losses, an American council of war was held and the decision was made that the army would retreat. The plan was to evacuate across the East River during the night of August 29. However, the retreat took longer than expected continuing on into the morning. God intervened in a powerful way by sending a thick fog that masked the clandestine departure once the sun rose and not a single life was lost during the evacuation. Less than 1 hour after the last boat escaped, the fog lifted!


Anonymous said...

Continental Brigadier General, William Alexander, Lord Stirling, was the hero of the battle of Long Island. (He was a native Scotsman, by the way.)

Outnumbered and in poor position, Stirling held the line of battle against the British for four hours, and the ordered all but 250 of his men to make their escape. Ounumbered 25-1, he and the remaining 250 (all Marylanders) made six consecutive attacks on the British force until his men were all captured or killed, in order to give the rest of the men time to escape. (By the way, Stirling, refusing to surrender to the British, ran through the British line and surrendered to the Hessians.)

Washington, watching the scene from a hill overlooking the field, is quoted as saying, "Good God! What brave fellows must I this day lose?"

But the lives of a good many continentals that day were owed to William Alexander, Lord Stirling, and his 250 continental Marylanders.

Buaidh no Bas,

Andrew R.

Faithful Legacy said...

Thank you for bringing up Lord Stirling! His performance at Long Island, and throughout the campaigns of the war lived up to a play on words of his title--it was sterling. He was one of Washington's most dependable generals (other than Lafayette). At his death before the War for Independence ended, Congress honored him with their thanks, specially noting the "bravery, perseverance and military talents he possessed."

By the way, the Maryland soldiers he led were from the 5th Maryland Continentals. They were very well dressed compared to the rest of the army, giving them the nickname "Dandy Fifth."

Dieu le Roi,

Jordan J.