Englishtown in Monmouth County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Mary “Molly” Hays
As the temperature approached 100 degrees, and gunners collapsed from heat exhaustion, a plucky Irish water carrier stepped forward to help work Captain Francis Proctor’s cannon. Memories of her heroism evolved into myth of “Molly Pitcher.”
When the British infantry pursued General Scott’s Continentals across the Sutfin farm, they were stopped by a barrage of canister and grapeshot. Most of the Continental artillery then switched to other targets, leaving Captain Proctor to bombard the battalion of Royal Highlanders pinned down in Derick Sutfin’s cider orchard.
Private Joseph Martin, described watching, as “ A woman…attended with her husband at the piece the whole time. While in the act of reaching a cartridge and having one of her feet as far before the other as she could step, a cannon shot from the enemy passed directly between her legs without doing any other damage than carrying away all the lower part of her petticoat. Looking at it with apparent unconcern, she…continued her occupation.”
The woman was Mary Hays, wife of William Hays, Gunner, Captain Francis Proctor’s company of the Pennsylvania or 4th Continental
Erected by Department of Environmental Protection.
Location. 40° 16.856′ N, 74° 19.012′ W. Marker is in Englishtown, New Jersey, in Monmouth County. Touch for map. Marker is located on the 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. Battlefield Archaeology (here, next to this marker); An Inspiring Commander in Chief (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Great Cannonade (about 400 feet away); Perrine Hill Spring (about 500 feet away); Molly Hays McCauley (about 500 feet away); Perrine Hill Front Line (about 500 feet away); Washington Resumes the Offensive (approx. 0.2 miles away); Highlanders Decline Combat (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Englishtown.
More about this marker. The marker features three photographs showing the operation of a cannon.
Additional keywords. Monmouth Battlefield
Categories. • War, US Revolutionary • Women •
Credits. This page was last revised on May 8, 2018. This page originally submitted on March 13, 2008, by Bryan Olson of Syracuse, New York. This page has been viewed 2,318 times since then and 31 times this year. Last updated on March 14, 2008, by Bryan Olson of Syracuse, New York. Photos: 1. submitted on March 13, 2008, by Bryan Olson of Syracuse, New York. 2, 3. submitted on July 7, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. 4. submitted on March 13, 2008, by Bryan Olson of Syracuse, New York. • Christopher Busta-Peck was the editor who published this page.