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Washington Crossing the Delaware

Washington Crossing is located along the Delaware River, just eight miles North of Trenton, New Jersey. As the end of 1776 approached, the "War for Independence" was going badly. General George Washington faced a desperate situation. Morale was low, and the enlistments for many of his regiments, including the 14th, would expire at the end of the year.

The Father of Our Country decided to get one more battle in before these troops left the service. General Washington chose to cross the Delaware River from Pennsylvania to New Jersey at this historic point, because it allowed his troops to ferry the Continental army without probable detection. At this time of year the British thought the river impassable due to the fast moving blocks of ice.

A wide variety of watercraft were assembled for the crossing, primarily by militia companies from the surrounding counties in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

In addition to the large ferry vessels (which were big enough to carry large coaches, and likely served for carrying horses and artillery during the crossing), a large number of Durham boats were used to transport soldiers across the river. These boats were designed to carry heavy loads from the Durham Iron Works, featured high sides and a shallow draft, and could be poled across the river.

On Christmas Eve, December 24, 1776, through sleet and snow the embarkation was made. General Washington, General Henry Knox, and 2,400 troops slowly paddled a quarter mile across the frozen Delaware river to the New Jersey shore to win the Battle of Trenton. The victory was the "turning-point of the American Revolution."

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Washington Crossing Pennslvania Marker

Near this spot General Washington began his journey accross the Delaware river.

2425 views

McConkey Inn

The only shelter on the Pennsylvania shoreline was the McConkey Inn.

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McConkey Ferry Inn

William McConkey owned the inn in 1776. Monkey was a friend of George Washington and one of the men in the barge in the latter led off his flotilla of hayboats and barges amid the ice flows.

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Durham Boats

The Durham boat was a large wooden boat produced by the Durham Boat Company of Durham, Pennsylvania, starting in 1750.

1785 views

Oarlock

Oarlock of the Durham class of boats.

1660 views

DSC02717

1983 views

North View of Delaware River at Washington Crossing

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North View of Delaware River at Washington Crossing

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South View of Delaware River at Washington Crossing

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Washington Crossing New Jersey Marker

A Christmas wreath honors the place where Washington's forces marched to Trenton.

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Commemorative Eagle

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George Washington Commemorative Plaque

The Society of Colonial Wars placed this bronze tablet to commemorate the Bicentennial birthday of George Washington.

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Sign - Units of Washington's Army That Crossed The Delaware River *

December 25, 1776

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Painting - Washington Crossing Delaware

Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze was a German American history painter best-known for his painting Washington Crossing the Delaware.

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Painting - The Battle of Princeton

William Mercer was an exeptional deaf art student of Charles Wilson Peale. His father, General Hugh Mercer, was stabbed by British bayonets in the Battle of Princeton while assisting George Washington on January 3, 1777.

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