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Battle of Trenton

The Battle of Trenton (December 26, 1776) in the American Revolutionary War sees Washington lead the main Continental Army across the Delaware to surprise and virtually eliminate the Hessian garrison at Trenton, New Jersey. This overwhelming victory helped to preserve the Continental Army and set the stage for the Battle of Princeton the following week.

Trenton was garrisoned by three regiments of the Hessian mercenaries, commanded by Colonel Johann Rall[?], for a total of about 1,200 men. Washington's force of about 2,400 attacked in two columns; Major General Nathaniel Greene's division from the north, and Major General John Sullivan[?]'s division from the west.

The American forces had only a handful of wounded (although two men froze to death on the march), while the Hessian's lost 106 dead and wounded with at least 600 captured. Colonel Rall was mortally wounded and died the same day. The Rall, Knyphausen, and Lossburg regiments were effectively removed from the British forces.

By noon, Washington's force had recrossed the Delaware back into Pennsylvania, taking their prisoners and captured supplies with them. This battle gave the Continental Congress a new confidence in that it proved American forces could defeat regulars. It also increased the reenlistments in the Continental Army forces.



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