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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
National Park in Gloucester County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Operations on the Delaware

 
 
Operations on the Delaware Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 7, 2008
1. Operations on the Delaware Marker
Inscription. When the Revolution began, Congress ordered construction of river defense systems to protect Philadelphia against a sea attack. A system of cheveaux-de-fries, a series of underwater obstructions, was developed. These consisted of large coffers (boxes) made of pine logs lined with planking. Long, heavy poles with iron tipped spikes projected out of the coffers at a 45 degree angle. The coffers were floated to strategic positions in the Delaware, filled with rock and sunk just below water level to impale enemy ships sailing upstream.

The Pennsylvania Council of Safety oversaw planning and construction of the fortifications, which included the cheveaux-de-fries, land batteries, and a navy to guard the river. Three sites were selected: Fort Mifflin, Fort Mercer at Red Bank and Billingsport. Row galleys were designed by Philadelphia shipwrights and formed the backbone of the Pennsylvania navy. The fifty-foot boats, with a cannon mounted in the bow, patrolled the river.

On October 23, 1777, the day after the victory at Red Bank, the 64 gun British warship Augusta exploded and sank down river under heavy American attack. The similar loss of the Merlin, a sloop carrying 18 cannons, and the victory of Colonel Christopher Greene delayed the British attempt to clear the river defenses.
 
Erected by
Marker in Red Bank Historical Park image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 7, 2008
2. Marker in Red Bank Historical Park
Red Bank Historical Park.
 
Location. 39° 52.153′ N, 75° 11.411′ W. Marker is in National Park, New Jersey, in Gloucester County. Marker is on Hessian Road, on the left when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is in Red Bank Battlefield. Marker is in this post office area: National Park NJ 08063, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. James and Ann Whitall House (a few steps from this marker); Ann Cooper Whitall (within shouting distance of this marker); The Medicinal Garden (within shouting distance of this marker); Welcome to Red Bank Battlefield Park! (within shouting distance of this marker); National Park Armed Service Monument (within shouting distance of this marker); Welcome to Red Bank Battlefield (within shouting distance of this marker); Whitall House (within shouting distance of this marker); The Aftermath (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in National Park.
 
More about this marker. The marker contains a map showing the course of the Delaware River from Philadelphia to Chester with the several forts and stackadoes fortified by the Rebels, and the attacks made by His Majesty’s Land and Sea forces.
 
Also see . . .
1. Red Bank Battlefield
Operations on the Delaware Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, October 27, 2013
3. Operations on the Delaware Marker
. Account of the action at Fort Mercer during the Revolutionary War. (Submitted on November 9, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 

2. Red Bank Battlefield Park and the James & Ann Whitall House, National Park, NJ. (Submitted on November 9, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
 
Categories. Notable EventsNotable PlacesWar, US Revolutionary
 
Delaware River Obstructions image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 7, 2008
4. Delaware River Obstructions
This exhibit of cheveaux-de-fries is located in Fort Mifflin. It shows how this type of obstruction posed a hazard to any British ship trying to approach Philadelphia.
Cannon from the British Frigate <i>Augusta</i> image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 7, 2008
5. Cannon from the British Frigate Augusta
This cannon was recovered from the Augusta, which exploded on October 23, 1777 in the Delaware River near Fort Mercer. It is located in Red Bank Battlefield Historical Park.
Red Bank Historical Park image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, November 7, 2008
6. Red Bank Historical Park
The marker is in Red Bank Battlefield Historic Park, a 44 acre park on the banks of the Delaware River, that preserves the site of Fort Mercer and the October 22, 1777 Battle of Red Bank.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 9, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 927 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 9, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.   3. submitted on October 28, 2013, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.   4, 5, 6. submitted on November 9, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.
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