Women and African Americans in War

Maria Englert, Lauren Hagen, Jessica Wolfgang

Mary Ludwig Hays "Molly Pitcher"

During the Revolutionary War, Mary Hays enlisted as a gunner in the Army. During this time wives were to be near their husbands in war so Mary followed her husband back to New Jersey during the war's Philadelphia Campaign. Mary fought in the battle of Monmouth Freehold, New Jersey, in June on a brutally hot day. Mary's husband was present as well and she made trips to a nearby spring to fill pitchers of cold water for the soldiers to drink and to cool their canons down. She got her nickname "Molly pitcher" from her tireless efforts.

The African Americans in the War

    Slaves and free blacks fought for the Continentals and for the British during the Revolutionary War. At Monmouth, African Americans faced each other. That battle did not matter much, nor, at the end of the war, did it much matter for which side blacks bore arms, at least as it concerned their freedom.

    A few American slaves for their service to the rebels were rewarded with liberty, but the operative word is few. For the most part, slaves who fought for the rebels remained the property of their masters





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