AMERICAN REVOLUTIONARY WAR VICTORIES OF SARATOGA AND YORKTOWN
Saturday, October 26, 2019
Muster at 1:30pm
RSVP by Fri. Oct. 25 at noon
The Lower Manhattan Historical Association (“LMHA”), with the support of its sponsoring member organizations, including the Sons of the Revolution in the State of New York, has announced its seventh annual commemoration of the American Revolutionary War Victories at the Battles of Saratoga and Yorktown. As in previous years, this commemoration also serves as celebration of the origins of the French-American alliance.
We would be honored if you can attend this special ceremony. The ceremony begins at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 26, 2019 at the historic Saint Paul’s Chapel Churchyard in Lower Manhattan and is expected to last approximately one hour and fifteen minutes. We also invite you to attend a reception at the Chapel following the event.
We welcome any member, or friend of the Society, who wishes to participate in the event by presenting the colors to do so. Dress code is blazers and Society ties, gray or dark slacks.
Muster is at 1:30 p.m. The celebration will commence at 2:00 p.m. on the West Portico of Saint Paul’s Chapel, facing the Liberty Tower. In the event of inclement weather the ceremony will be held in Saint Paul’s Chapel.
If you would like to represent the Society by presenting the colors, please contact Scott Dwyer (firstname.lastname@example.org) by Friday 10/25 so that we can plan accordingly and have a flag for you to present. We look forward to seeing you there, and, if you are interested, for an informal drink afterwards.
Each October the LMHA celebrates two of the Continental Army’s most decisive Revolutionary War victories, the battles of Saratoga and Yorktown. While other Continental Army victories, such as the siege of Boston, were essential to the final defeat of British forces and the recognition of United States of America as an independent, sovereign nation by the British Crown, Saratoga and Yorktown are indisputably considered to be the definitive turning points of the American Revolution in that both resulted in the surrender of significant British forces along with their commanding officers (on October 17, 1777 and October 19, 1781, respectively).
For the devotees of lower Manhattan history, these two battles hold special significance. Both General Horatio Gates, the commanding general at the Battle of Saratoga, and Alexander Hamilton, a key aide to General George Washington and the leader the climactic charge against redoubt 10 at the Battle of Yorktown, are buried at the site our ceremony in Trinity Churchyard. We note that while the grave of Alexander Hamilton, well known as the first Secretary of the United States Treasury and a key contributor to the Federalist Papers, has been known to patriots and historians from the day of his burial to the present, that Horatio Gates was left unmarked for almost 200 years; an omission addressed and remedied by the New York State Daughters of the American Revolution. This annual commemorative ceremony, led by the Lower Manhattan Historical Society and its sponsoring member organizations, addresses this gap in the understanding of our city’s contribution to the American Revolution cause. Also buried in Trinity Churchyard and dutifully honored as part of this ceremony is Marinus Willett, a critically important commander at the Battle of Fort Stanwix (a subsidiary battle to Saratoga and a very important post-Revolutionary War New York City politician).
Additionally, the Battle of Yorktown is symbolic of the United States of America’s oldest military alliance. Powerful French land forces, commanded by the Comte de Rochambeau, and an equally important and sizable French fleet, commanded by the Comte de Grasse, played a crucial role in the defeat and capitulation of the British army commanded by Lieutenant General Charles Cornwallis. As such, the celebration of this great victory offers us the opportunity to commemorate our friendship with United States of America’s first ally by hosting representatives of the French military and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
More information can be found at https://lmha-nyc.org/saratoga-and-yorktown