Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on May 30, 1976 · Page 90
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Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 90

Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, May 30, 1976
Page 90
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Page 90 article text (OCR)

Defeat At Germantown By John Schpolfield Washington's soldiers had fought fiercely that October morning in 1777 at Germantown, Pa., and they were pursuing the retreating Red Coats through the dense fog with musket and bayonet. Suddenly, at the very moment of apparent overwhelming victory, panic swept the ranks like lightning and the Americans turned their backs to the enemy and fled in confusion. A few days later, Washington wrote to Congress of his "chagrin and mortification" over the precipitous retreat of his army. And for 200 years historians have had a field day discussing the relative importance of a number of incidents leading up to the moment of disaster. Washington and his army, 8,000 Continentals and 3,000 militia, had left their camp on Skippack Creek at sundown on Oct. 3 and headed toward the village of Germantown, 15 miles to the south, where Gen. William Howe and his 9,000-man British army were encamped. The Americans moved in four columns along four different Luiites and Washington's battle plan called for a simultaneous attack against the British lines at dawn. Washington accompanied the first column, which was commanded by Gen. John Sullivan. Troops under Gen. "Mad" Anthony. Wayne marched with Sullivan. This column was to attack the left of the enemy position, which stretched through Germantown on generally an east-west line. The second column under Gen. Nathanael Greene, supported by a division under Gen. Adam Stephen, was to fall on the enemy's right. Two smaller columns were to circle the enemy on either side and fall upon him from behind. The roads approaching Germantown were rough; Washington's men were weary from lack of sleep and more than a thousand of them marched barefooted. It was after daybreak, in a dense fog, when the advanced patrols of Sullivan's column engaged the enemy, and the battle was on. Sullivan's men fought with fury and drove the British before them with musket and bayonet. But, a full pursuit was delayed by a bold British officer with 120 determined riflemen who, under cover of the fog, had taken a position in a large stone house just off the main road leading to the village. Their intense fire from the second story of the house took a heavy toll on the advancing Americans, 52 of whom were shot down in a direct assault on the structure. Finally a regi- ment was left behind to contain the men within the house and the rest of the American troops pressed for- w,ard. Meanwhile, Greene and his column had been led in the wrong direction by a guide and were late in attacking the enemy's right. When Greene finally engaged the British he found himself without the support of Stephen and his division. Stephen, who had been drinking heavily that morning, had led his men toward the siege at the stone house without notifying Greene. Despite this, Greene attacked with vigor and soon the British were retreating before the advancing columns of Sullivan and Greene all along the line. The two smaller columns sent to encircle the enemy were now approaching the action and the Americans were on the point of carrying the day, when all hell broke loose. "Mad" Anthony Wayne, hearing an outburst of gunfire at the stone house to his rear, turned back with some of his troops to investigate. As they hurried back they collided with Stephen's men who were now advancing toward the line of battle and both groups opened a deadly fire before the mistake was discovered. At that moment a lone horseman, confused by the firing in front and.rear, appeared out of the fog and smoke of battle in the midst of Sullivan's troops. His cry, "We are surrounded," sounded above the roar of artillery and musket fire and sent his comrades fleeing in panic through the mist. Gen. Washington, it is said, rode into the "Hottest fire of the enemy" and shouted and struck at his men with the flat of his sword in an, effort to rally them; but they ran past him. Within minutes the entire American Army was in retreat. The Americans, had lost 152 killed, 521 wounded and more than 400 captured. The British reported 70 killed and 450 wounded. Fatigue too, took its toll among the Americans and during the retreat Gen. John Muhlenberg, a brigade com- · mander, fell asleep while riding his horse; Gen. Thomas Conway was found asleep in a barn; and Gen. Casimir Pulaski, the Polish nobleman, was found asleep in a farm house. Poor Gen. Stephen, discovered dead drunk in a field, was later convicted of "drunkenness" and dismissed from the service. The weary Americans retreated for 20 miles before they stopped to lick their wounds and reflect on the misfortunes of war. Crossword Puzzle Answer for Sunday, May 23, Cryptoquip: HEALTHY CITY SLICKER JUST CANT ADJUST AT TRICKY DUDE RANCH. CRYPTOQUIP K V C L X Y C K K O H H V E M K O E M H T M S A F I M T E V I M T O D D O S C A K K X F B A V B L H X V K - Y C K Today's Cryptoquip cte: S equals C |T|A|0|SBR|A|B| 1101 |N lOlTl AlClHl AjNoEllN|0]T|H| AlLlFjBI A|Dl |FiL|A|s|H|is| I |N|G|Filf F N|T|E G|O[AlSli\]AG 6|p|E|R|G|N|EiiNlO|M|AlC MSB iLlAlRlAl · N I T IRIAIDIEISI QHffl IAILILMT ElA s E u IJ i lAiMllsl i msl JNl I IPlPlElDl (Copyright 1975 by John Schoolfield) ACROSS. 1 Levantine ketch 5 Science subj. J Word with gravy or train 13 Firmly fixed 17 Genus of herbs 18 Genus of thebowfin 19 To the sheltered side 20 Additional 22 Strange 23 State of foulness 25 A lariat 28 Certain mercenary women- 28 The state flower of Alabama SOSuffix torming verbs 31 Vain 32 Japanese statesman 34 Portion 35 Spanish queen 38 - fixe 37 A creek 39 Pintado, the fish 41 Its capital is Nova Lisboa 44 More verdant 48 Pestilence 50 Smutted 51 Sticky substance · 52 A king of Norway 54 Large cats 55 Bulging pot 56 French author 59 River to the Elbe 61 Long, narrow opening 62 Radiation unit 63 Foretells 65 Furnishes 67 Criminal 69 Maintain 71 Destroys 72 Certain farmer 75 Concern 77 Russian plane 80 Olive genus 81 Paradise 83 Charge with gas 84 Famous ship 85 Paralysis 87 Nights before holidays 89 Jesus Hominum Salvator (abbr.) 90 Eminent 91 Hold in affection 93 Adepts 98 Deep incisions 97 Sudden descent 99 Bulrushes IN Swing about 101 Once Mrs. Sinatra 104 Challenge 106 Fabled bird 107 Inspires with wonder 108 Swiss river 111 To swindle (slang) 114 Large and powerful bird 117 Mountains of Asia 118 Curdled 120 Pea tree 121 Brenda 122 Charles Lamb 123 Story 124 Carried 125 An aroid 128 Hardens 127 British gun 128 River to the Elbe DOWN IFarm. buildings 2 Old- womanish 3 Frosted 4 Frankly 5 A ring bracelet 8 Likeness 7 River in France 8 Army privy 9 Public interdict 10 Designer Cassini 11 Noted fabulist 12 American electrician and family 13 Prophesy 14 Solar disk 15 Partake 16 River in Montana 17 Cranial nerves DHSHBQ HfflQSB HHEEffl" HSffl HHHH SHO EEEH QEG acisn HSdffls EDODD DQUD 21 Ukrainian legislature 24 Agave fiber 27 Notion 29 Fall in drops 33 Wine: comb, form 36 Greek letter 37 Lightly sarcastic 38 Hindu of low caste 40 Dry fruit 41 Hebrew instrument 42 Vincent Lopez' theme 43 Certain mining district 44 Prod 45 Coarse file 47 British author 48 United (Fr. fern.) 49 Superlative suffixes 51 Military missile 53 Weasels 56 "Ethan -" 57 Roman 251 58 Babylonian hero 60 Stimulate 63 Perform diligently 64 Location 66 Organic: comb, form 68 Expunged 70 Deserves 72 Information (slang) 73 Actor Alda 74Fim 76 Stadium cheers 78 Arrow poison 79 Miner's chisels 82 Barber's call 84 Facial feature 88 Restricted soldier 88 Stiff, sharp spine 91 To sicken 92 Bellow 94 Funeral oration 95 Covers again 96 Secluded , valley 98 Costs 100 European kingdom 101 Turkish ^ officers 102 Italian physicist 103 Place of sacrifice 105 French school 107 -- Astaire 108 Size of type 109 Change 110 American journalist 112 Biblical name 113 Grow together 115 Low ,_Latin (abbr.) 116 Excited 119 A fuel Average time of solution: 63 min. State Magazine. Mav .30. 1976 (·/M/?/,E.STO/V. W.VA 21m

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