Washington Crossing the Delaware

Battle of Trenton

Citations

Leutze, Emanuel. Washington Crossing the Delaware. 1851. Metropolitan Musuem of Art, New York City, NY. Washington Crossing the Delaware by Emanuel Leutze, MMA-NYC, 1851.jpg. Web. 1 Jan. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Washington_Crossing_the_Delaware_by_Emanuel_Leutze,_MMA-NYC,_1851.jpg>.


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Washington Crossing the Delaware

You can tell by the picture that General Washington is a natural leader. At six foot three he stood much taller than a lot of his men. But there is one flaw with the picture above. On the actual night of the crossing there was a howling nor`easter; not a sunny morning. About one thousand of Washington's men crossed the river without shoes or the warmth of a coat. Could you imagine crossing a river that has ice chuncks everyware;- Not to mention you are in the middle of a snow storm- and you don't even have shoes or even a coat!
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The Revised Version

By looking at this painting you can tell that Emanuel Latze's painting is much more glorified than this painting by Mort Kunsler. This patnting was painted according to the facts of the crossing. But one thing is certain, we will never know what the crossing looked like exactly.
Christmas Day 1776 - "Victory or Death"

Summary

On 7/4/1776, the Declaration of Independence was ratified. Six months later, the American Revolution was almost lost. A powerful British force had defeated the Americans at New York, had occupied three of our colonies, and advanced very close to Philadelphia. George Washington lost 90 percent of his army and was driven back across the Delaware River. Panic and despair spread through the states. The surviving troops were so demoralized that most were not going to re-enlist when their service period ended on December 31st of that year. But the successful crossing of the Delaware and the resulting Battle of Trenton gave the the victory they needed to boost their confidence and turn the tables of the war. A second battle of Trenton followed within days. The Americans held off a counterattack by Lord Cornwallis's best troops, then were almost trapped by the British force. Washington's men snuck behind the enemy lines at night and struck them again, defeating a brigade at Princeton. The British were badly shaken. After twelve more weeks of winter battles, their army suffered severe damage, their hold on New Jersey was broken, and their strategy was ruined. Although not obvious and the time, these battles were a very important turning point of the American Revolution. The victories brought the troops out of despair, won the support of the colonists, and convinced the British that the Americans were a force to be reckoned with. The surprising victories of Washington and his rag tag army not only saved the faltering American Revolution, but helped to give it new meaning, in an important moment for American history.