Battle of Iron Works Hill

December 17, 2008

In December 1776, after significant victories over the Americans, the British army, resting upon its laurels, went into winter quarters in New York and New Jersey. The British wrongly assumed that Washington’s forces in Pennsylvania were also in winter quarters.

On December 17th, General Washington ordered 600 of his forces, mostly untrained men and boys from nearby towns augmented by two companies of Virginia soldiers, to cross the Delaware River and march via Moorestown to Mount Holly, New Jersey.  At Mount Holly the rebels set up a few “3-pounder” artillery pieces on Iron Works Hill, causing the Hessian commanders at Black Horse and Bordentown to believe they were being opposed by 3,000 men. By Christmas Eve, Washington’s plan had lured 2,000 Hessians to the The Mount in Mount Holly, to engage the supposed “thousands” of rebel forces occupying Iron Works Hill. Then at nighttime, while the Hessians were making merry, indulging in the confiscated contents of a local brewery, the Americans stealthily evacuated their positions and marched to Moorestown. On December 26, Washington’s army was able to wax victorious at the Battle of Trenton, capturing 1,000 prisoners. Part of that victory by the Americans is attributed to Washington’s plan a week earlier at the Battle of Iron Works Hill.

I am sorry to report that the photograph that was here of the reenactment of the Battle of Iron Works Hill in Mount Holly, New Jersey that took place on 13 December 2008, has been removed from Flickr’s public viewing.