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Manalapan in Monmouth County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Highlanders Decline Combat

The Battle of Monmouth

 

—28 June 1778,   4:10 PM – 4:20 PM —

 
Highlanders Decline Combat Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 3, 2010
1. Highlanders Decline Combat Marker
Inscription. What a pity it is to throw away such men as these”   Captain – Lieutenant John Peebles, Royal Highland Regiment

Here, in what was Derick Sutfin’s cider orchard, 300 Royal Highlanders found themselves in an awkward position. Over 700 Continental infantry were approaching their right flank (up the hill behind you), while a Continental cannon fired round after round into the treetops above their heads. Should they stay and fight?

The hardy, brave Scots were too valuable to waste in a needless firefight. Wisely, their commander decided not to fight here. Instead, he led his men south along the fence looking for a good position from which to assail the Continentals.

as the Continentals advanced, they found their way blocked by an orchard fence (no longer standing). Colonel Cilley sent a platoon to skirmish with the Highlanders and slow them down while the rest of the battalion took down the fence. One of the skirmishers, Joseph Martin, later remembered that “we pursued without order. As I passed through the orchard, I saw a number of the enemy killed by our field piece.”

The Scots withdrew through the fields, stopping twice to fire upon the pursuing Continentals. Then the Scots forded the brook and rejoined Clinton’s army.

< Sidebar: >
Archaeology
Marker on the Monmouth Battlefield image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 3, 2010
2. Marker on the Monmouth Battlefield
confirms Highlanders’ Position

While in Sutfin’s orchard, the Scots had been sniped at by American rifle and musket men and bombarded with lead canister and 2-ounce grape shot from Captain Proctor’s 4-pounder field piece. Many of these projectiles remained in the ground until 1990 when archaeologists began to excavate the site. Careful computer analysis of the data revealed the location of the Royal Highlanders.

Archaeology by BRAVO (Battlefield & Archaeological Volunteer Organization)
 
Erected by NJ Department of Environmental Protection – Division of Parks & Forestry.
 
Location. 40° 16.747′ N, 74° 18.591′ W. Marker is in Manalapan, New Jersey, in Monmouth County. Marker can be reached from Freehold Road (County Route 522), on the left when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is located on the Monmouth Battlefield hiking trail. Marker is in this post office area: Englishtown NJ 07726, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Washington Resumes the Offensive (approx. ¼ mile away); Perrine Hill Front Line (approx. 0.3 miles away); Mary “Molly” Hays (approx. 0.4 miles away); Battlefield Archaeology
Highlanders Decline Combat Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 3, 2010
3. Highlanders Decline Combat Marker
(approx. 0.4 miles away); An Inspiring Commander in Chief (approx. 0.4 miles away); The Great Cannonade (approx. 0.4 miles away); Perrine Hill Spring (approx. half a mile away); Molly Hays McCauley (approx. half a mile away). Click for a list of all markers in Manalapan.
 
More about this marker. The sidebar contains a troop movement map showing the location of the marker in relation to the British Royal Highlanders and Retreating Loyalist Rangers, and American Col. Cilley’s Battalion, Parker’s Battalion and snipers with rifles and muskets, as well as artillery fire and the orchard fence. Also indicated on the map are the locations where grape shot, canister shot, musket balls, rifle balls and slugs were found by archaeologists.
The lower left of the marker features a photograph of “The General’s Company of the Royal Highlanders (42nd Regiment of British Foot) pinned down in a Monmouth orchard, [during a] June 1995 re-enactment.”
 
Also see . . .
1. Monmouth Battlefield State Park. New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry website. (Submitted on November 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
Highlanders Decline Combat Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 3, 2010
4. Highlanders Decline Combat Marker
This photo looks south, in the direction that British Royal Highlanders retreated during the June 28, 1778 Battle of Monmouth.
 

2. The Battle of Monmouth. From the American Revolution website. (Submitted on November 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 

3. The Battle of Monmouth, 1778. A British perspective of the Battle of Monmouth on BritishBattles.com. (Submitted on November 8, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 
 
Categories. War, US Revolutionary
 
Monmouth Battlefield image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 3, 2010
5. Monmouth Battlefield
The grounds on which the Battle of Monmouth took place appears today much as they did in 1778.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 618 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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