On a hill in Washington Heights overlooking the Hudson
River is Bennett
Park which was named for James Gordon Bennett, publisher and founder
New York Herald. It is also the site of one of the worst military
the Continental Army during the American Revolution. This site known
Washington was lost in battle on November 16, 1776.
It is considered the Alamo of the American Revolution
where 2,800 ill
equipped Americans surrendered to 9,000 British and Hessian soldiers.
battle lines had been drawn at 7:00 AM and was underway by noon due
inclement weather. According to 18th Century military customs
offered terms of surrender on November 15th and Colonel Robert
by stating that the Americans would fight to the last extremity.
By the end of th day the Royalist forces had surrounded
the fort and the
American colors were struck. The American prisoners were forced
to march to
lower Manhattan to be place on prison ships in Wallabout Bay for the
of war. During this period over 11,000 Americans died on these
ships due to
sickness, brutality and malnutrition. In time officers like Colonel
were released pardoned or exchanged for high ranking British
This year offers a triple celebration for the area.
First is the 225th
anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.
November is the 225th Anniversary of the Battle of Fort Washington.
there is the centennial of the plaque on the Fort Washington Avenue
Bennett Park that was place as a memorial to the men and women of the
Army who took an active part in that battle. The plaque was place
unveiled on November 16, 1901 on the 125th anniversary of the ill fated
Presently plans are in the works to have a celebration
on November 18,
2001 sponsored by the Washington Heights Neighborhood Association and
of Bennett Park.