Near Newark in New Castle County, Delaware — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Battle of Cooch's Bridge
Maxwell's newly-formed corps was composed of Continentals from New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia, as well as militia from New Castle and Chester counties. For one week Maxwell's Corps had harassed and scouted the British Army under General Sir William Howe after its landing at the Head of Elk (Elkton) in late August, following orders from General George Washington to "provide every possible annoyance". Maxwell's Corps was covering the crucial main road to Philadelphia (today's Old Cooch's Bridge Road).
On the morning of September 3, the advanced guard of the British Army marched north along Old Cooch's Bridge Road into a well-prepared ambush. Elements of Maxwell's Corps opened fire on the Jägers from concealed positions along the road. The American Light Infantry was to engage the enemy and delay their advance.
After the initial surprise,
Casualties on both sides ranged from 30 to 40 dead and wounded. British pioneers buried at least 24 Americans on the field in unmarked graves. American officers engaged in the battle included John Marshall (future United States Chief Justice) , Thomas Duff of Newport, Delaware, Alexander Martin (later Governor of North Carolina), and Francis Gurney (future Pennsylvania Senator and Dickinson College Trustee).
Following the battle the British Army occupied the area from Iron Hill to Aiken's Tavern (Glasgow) with General Cornwallis' headquarters located at the Cooch House. The British encamped in the area until September
Known as the Battle of Cooch's Bridge by American participants, the skirmish was the opening engagement of the Philadelphia Campaign of 1777, and is the only Revolutionary War battle fought on what became First State soil.
Tradition and considerable circumstantial evidence support the claim that the Stars and Stripes was first carried in the Battle of Cooch's Bridge.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Bridges & Viaducts • War, US Revolutionary.
Location. Marker has been reported permanently removed. It was located near 39° 38.462′ N, 75° 43.941′ W. Marker was near Newark, Delaware, in New Castle County. Marker was on Dayett Mills Road south of Old Baltimore Pike, on the right when traveling south. Marker has been replaced with another marker with the same title. Touch for map. Marker was in this post office area: Newark DE 19702, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this location. American Position (here, next to this marker); Delaware's Field of Valor (here, next to this marker); Geology (here, next to this marker); Mason Dixon Line & the Boundaries of Delaware (here, next to this marker); Milling in Pencader HundredThe Philadelphia Campaign (here, next to this marker); Enjoy the Pencader Area Today (here, next to this marker); Your Gateway to Pencader Heritage (here, next to this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Newark.
Credits. This page was last revised on October 5, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 7, 2008. This page has been viewed 5,633 times since then and 2 times this year. Last updated on October 2, 2020. Photos: 1. submitted on August 7, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. 2, 3. submitted on October 12, 2019, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. 4. submitted on August 7, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.