Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Battle of Trenton

The day was cold and the rain froze us to the bone. On December 29, 2012, a couple hundred of reenactors and spectators gathered to remember and celebrate the Continental Army's victory over the Hessians and to mourn the passing of a long time Brigade of the American Revolution officer, Wayne Daniels. Regiments gathered from New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania to march through the modern day streets of Trenton. In one of the most interesting and integrating reenactments this blogger has seen, the troops in their 18th century clothing marched next to eager, modern-day spectators. The camp followers were impromptu security, walking the anachronistic line marked by the sidewalk and keeping the modern folk safe from musket fire.

The 5th New York was fortuinate enough to fall in with the kind gents of the 14th Mass Continentals, or more commonly called, the Marbleheaders. The troops marched forward to teach the Tories and Hessians a lesson!

The battle culminated on the park green where the 5th NY and 14th MA took the high grounds over the bridge. The troops successfully won the first battle, but the celebration was short lived. Once reformed in three blocks, the announcer said his condolences for the loss of the BAR founder, Wayne Daniels. Heartfelt and hurting, the troops fired off three volleys in respect. The troops marched back to the barracks for a break and lunch.

Credit: The History Girl
The second battle was just as successful as the first, if not a bit more soggy. The snow had turned to rain, and the perma-cloud above provided a perfect backdrop for the battle. The Continentals successfully defended the field and bridge against the oppressors. These two battles were a huge morale booster for the rebel cause and gave reason for majority of Washington's troops to reenlist.

It was a memorable time for all civilians and troops and continues to be a wonderful tradition.  We thank the tireless work of the BAR association and the memory of Wayne Daniels for giving us this amazing opportunity to relive such a poignant piece of history.