Many of the military successes of the American Revolution were brought about by a man who was christened the title of General, yet, he had little experience in the field. That man was George Washington; bold, patriotic, and an extraordinary general at the time. George Washington led his army through many battles during the Revolutionary War and won quite a few of them. One of his most famous and well-known leadership feats was the Crossing of the Delaware River.
CROSSING OF THE DELAWARE RIVER
One of Washington’s meticulous plans occurred on the chilly night of December 25, 1776, the night when he sneakily crossed the Delaware River on boat. He desired to cross the river during night, in order for his army to not be seen, and arriving at Trenton in the morning to execute his next task – the Battle of Trenton.
The crossing was no easy task; his army was awfully tired from marching, everyone was cold, even the river showed no mercy as ice flowed among it, a lethal weapon of nature that could tear his armada of wooden boats to pieces. Clearly, to anyone, this would be dangerous enough for a few men – let alone an army of over 2,400 soldiers – but Washington persisted. He led his army through the stormy night over to the other side successfully to continue on to Trenton.
BATTLE OF TRENTON
After crossing the Delaware River, Washington continued up to Trenton, where the Hessians (German mercenaries that were hired by the British) resided at the time. Washington knew that seizing Trenton would provide an advantage for the Americans.
In a small yet pivotal battle, Washington deflected the Hessians’ attempts to divide his troops. The Hessian troops fled quickly, leaving their cannon behind, which the Continental troops acquired. They attacked the fleeing enemies until they stopped at an apple orchard, where Washington accepted their surrender plea, resulting in a swift win for the Continental army and more than 850 surrendered enemies (Source).
SIEGE OF BOSTON
The Siege of Boston, an event that went on for nearly 11 months, involved the Continental army surrounding Boston, which was under British control at the time. Washington desired to bring down the Loyalists inhabiting the city but his officers refused to attack the British, as the city was still receiving supplies by cargo ship and it could be overpowering to the Continental army (Source).
However great the prospect of reclaiming Boston was, Washington complied to this advice and held his troops off until the evening of March 4, 1776, when he ordered his men to acquire the cannon from Fort Ticonderoga out to Dorchester Heights, an area south of the city (Source). The British fired cannons in Cambridge throughout that night, but Washington sneakily barraged them with his own cannons in the morning.
General Howe of the Loyalist army chose to attempt an assault on the Continental army, but harsh weather conditions prevented this. Realizing the pure power of the Americans, he and his troops retreated to New York, and Washington regained control of the city. The day the British fled is known as “Evacuation Day”.
The Redcoats flee Boston from Washington’s troops. (Source)
BECOMING THE FIRST PRESIDENT
When the Treaty of Paris was signed and the Revolutionary War ceased, the US needed their first president. Washington was a perfect candidate, the people said, as he was the US General for the Revolutionary War. Unfortunately for him, he expected to retire in Mount Vernon after his military career, but now the people were persuading him to become the first president. It was no easy task, Washington himself once said, “I walk on untrodden ground.” (Source). After all, he would be the first president in a country that just gained independence and wasn't entirely formed yet. Many important systems would need to be formed under his period of presidency. Fortunately for the people, he decided to take on the job grudgingly. He was elected as president on April 30, 1789.
George Washington played a great role in shaping our nation into what it is today. His opinion and values were held by presidents after him because he was a man of values and freedom. Today, he is known as the “Father of His Country”. His image can be found in many places; on the US one-dollar bill; on the Washington state flag; on Mount Rushmore; a statue outside of the Federal Hall Memorial; among other places. To continue his legacy and display your pride for the formation of our country, consider purchasing one of our handcrafted George Washington Revolution pieces today; only 1776 will be created.