There is a symmetry between the folly of Burgoyne’s march south to Saratoga and that of Cornwallis’s march north to Yorktown. Military historians debate why Burgoyne risked marching south from Fort Edward in the same way that they question why Cornwallis advanced north beyond North Carolina into Virginia. Although Cornwallis had none of the outward vanity of Burgoyne, the two men were similar in that they were both junior generals and neither of them was commander in chief of the British army in America. Both blamed their subsequent failures on rigid orders and insufficient latitude. They both expected to march through predominantly friendly territory. They both ignored the chain of command and went over the heads of their superiors to communicate independently with Lord George Germain. They both allowed their supply lines to become overextended and their forces suffered harassment by enemy militia. They presided over the two most decisive defeats of the American Revolutionary War.
Oil on canvas; 30 x 24 in. One of the 78 scenes from American history by Ferris titled
The Pageant of a Nation. Virginia Historical S
Terra cotta patinated plaster. Thomas Jefferson Foundation, Monticello, Charlottesville, VA.
Oil on canvas; 91.4 x 71.1 x (36 x 28 1/16 in).
Oil on mahogany. 4 1/2 x 3 1/4 in. (11.4 x 8.3 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY.
Oil on panel; 12.1 × 7.6 cm (4.8 × 3 in). The White House Collection, Washington, DC.
Oil on wood; miniature. Thomas Jefferson Foundation, Monticello, Charlottesville, VA.
Oil on canvas. Thomas Jefferson State Reception Room, U.S. Department of State building, Washington, D.C.
Oil on canvas. Independence National Historical Park, Portrait Collection (Second Bank of the United States), Philadelphia, PA.
Pastel on paper. Independence National Historical Park, Portrait Collection (Second Bank of the United States), Philadelphia, PA.
Oil on canvas; 69.22 cm (27.25 in) x 60.96 cm (24 in). Private collection.