Recent Activities - Washington's Crossing

1999 New Jersey Silver Proof Quarter

[ Graphic courtesy of the U.S. Mint Website ]

     By December of 1776, Washington desperately needed a victory to rally his troops, increase morale, and get them to extend their enlistments beyond the December 31, 1776 expiration.  He devised a plan to attack the Hessian garrison at Trenton, during the wee morning hours after Christmas.  Despite overwhelming odds with the ice choked Delaware River, and sleet and snow hampering their every step, Washington managed to get his 2,400 men across the river and make the march on Trenton.  After a brief engagement the Hessians surrendered, and the Hessian commander, Colonel Johannes Rahl, lay mortally wounded.  Washington lost not a single man during the battle, but many froze during the march.  This single battle was but a small engagement compared to the vastness of the overall Revolution, but it was a moral victory, that had the desired effect ... new recruits swarmed to Washington's side.  The army was saved, and the fight for freedom would be allowed to continue.

     For the 2003 Christmas reenactment, the weather may have faired better in the temperature department, but it definitely suffered in the river department.  The heavy rains and snow that preceded the Crossing left the Delaware River seven feet above normal, and was moving at a pace too rapid to safely navigate for the crossing.  However, reenactors being a hearty bunch, they still gathered to mark the 227th anniversary of the event that saved the nation in the early days of the American Revolution where every small setback could have ended the fledgling country.


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~~~~~ CROSSING REHEARSAL 2006 ~~~~~

Photos for the rehearsal were posted in the NY Times

Charles manages to get a place in the boats


~~~~~ CROSSING REHEARSAL 2005 ~~~~~

Photos for the rehearsal compliments of Lisa Glock

A little snow for atmosphere

Bill gives history of the Durham boats

It's obviously much warmer inside looking out

Starting across the river

Fighting the currents

Almost across

Finally there

Getting the troops off

Washington gathers the troops

Starting the march on Trenton


~~~~~ CHRISTMAS CROSSING 2003 ~~~~~

The Delaware River was 7 feet above normal, and moving too fast to safely cross

HI TED !!!

The Flag detachment

Sean Patrick - Sean - Owen

Sean with his two sons

New Jersey Governor McGreevey stopped by

Hey Sis ... you look good dressed in period clothing

David and James "frame" visiting sister Diane

He and his wife (L) are REAL lieutenant colonels

James' AF Commander even came to watch

Lashed boats that will not get used THIS year

General Washington addresses the troops

Troops and Marblehead rowers stand by

Hey ... we recognize some of those guys ... HI CHARLES, JUSTIN, JOHN P. AND PAT

Marching in parade

Firing on New Jersey


~~~~~ REHEARSAL CROSSING 2000 ~~~~~

General Washington surveys the crossing with his staff

Loading the boats

Half way across

"No, it's not cold!"

That river is awfully shallow


~~~~~ CHRISTMAS CROSSING 2000 ~~~~~

The temperature on this crossing day was almost 30 below zero

There's Rex and James

Troops shiver in the cold

Bill isn't much warmer

This is pretty close to what it was really like

Loading the boats

Heading across

That's a LOT of ice in the river




I WANT one for Christmas

A beautiful British sea pistol

A key wind watch

He was mortally wounded wearing this at the battle of Trenton

Colonel Rahl's tunic

2-bits ... I wonder where that phrase came from

Colonial Currency

Click here to learn the whole story

Washington's letter to Humpton

Learn more about what is available at the


visit the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission Website

Learn more about what is available at the




Want to visit the site yourself?  CLICK HERE for directions

Additional sites which discuss the Crossing and Battles of Trenton and Princeton

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