Sites of many critical events of the Revolutionary War have been lost or neglected by history. Places where patriots fought and died are often unmarked, shrouded in mystery, distorted by mythology and unknown even to local people. After more than two centuries some of these sites have entirely disappeared while others have languished unnoticed. The Forgotten Revolution revives these forsaken locations with fresh research from original military records and onsite visits.
Bob Mayers has analyzed sources ignored by earlier historians and has found that myths were often created when the winner wrote the history. Obscure British, Hessian and Loyalist accounts revealed more accurate details than those that we have traditionally accepted as authentic. At each of these places “witnesses,” people with special local knowledge contributed to this work. They were staff at national and state parks, regimental re-enactors, members of historical societies, private owners who live on the land and descendants of original settlers whose ancestors are buried in local cemeteries. These caretakers of local history provided special insights and information that could not be found in recorded history.
These places were selected from among many significant events in a war that lasted eight years. While Mayers was conducting research for The War Man, The True Story of a Citizen –Soldier who Fought from Quebec to Yorktown, he examined the details of the life of a real soldier whose service in the Continental Army spanned the entire war. The soldier marched thousands of miles and was present at many of the most crucial and pivotal events of the conflict. These forgotten historic places were revealed to the author while following his footsteps.
The locations extend from Canada to Virginia. All were key events that could have changed the course of the war. Some winter campgrounds such as Jockey Hollow, New Windsor, New York were as significant as battle grounds. Vital transportation links such as Kings Ferry, New York or Head of Elk, (Elkton) Maryland are also included. Natural defenses provided by mountains and waterways determined the location of all these places. Hills, rivers, cities, forests, coastlines influenced troop movements, battle sites, supply routes and the flow of action during the entire war.
Muster Rolls, Orderly Books and diaries allow us to follow events but no amount of archival research compared with actually visiting these places and visualizing how the appeared over two hundred years ago. The description of these neglected sites will save the reader from traveling to each of these places or allow selective personal journeys to those found to be the most interesting. This book has been written so that it may be enjoyed by average readers and not just hard core fans of the era.
Publication date: May 30, 2014
Available on line-Amazon.com, from Heritage Books or in bookstores