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.
Steuben, Baron von
Philadelphia, PA — Founded in 1743 by Benjamin Franklin and John Bartram to promote
Useful Knowledge.Philosophical Hall (1789) is now a museum featuring art, scientific instruments, rare books, original manuscripts, natural history specimens, and curiosities.
Washington, DC — Dedicated to Lafayette in 1824; at each corner is a statue of one foreign general who served in the war.
River Edge, NJ — Presented to Baron von Steuben, Inspector General, in 1783 by the state of New Jersey for his services during the war; includes fine collection of period furnishings.
Remsen, NY — Includes a replica cabin, which contains period pieces, five wooded acres, and the monument which marks Baron von Steuben’s burial spot.
Valley Forge, VA — This federal-style mansion, built about 1740 and enlarged in 1798, served as headquarters for the Continental Army during the Battle of Germantown in 1777; includes period furniture and artifacts on 3.5 acres.
The Men Who Lost America: British Leadership, the American Revolution, and the Fate of the Empire (2013)