Manuscript Group 227, Jersey Brigade Orderly book, 1780
Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs
Manuscript Group 227, Jersey Brigade
Orderly book, 1780, 0.1 linear feet / 1 volume
Call Number: MG 227
Kept at West Point, New York by John Ross, Brigade Major and Inspector,
October 10-30, 1780. Comprising the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd New Jersey Regiments,
the Jersey Brigade was then commanded by Colonel Elias Dayton (1737-1807).
The Jersey Brigade was formed in December
1775 under Colonel William “Scotch Willie” Maxwell. Among the
campaigns in which the brigade participated were those at Quebec, Short Hills,
Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth, the Iroquois Expedition, Connecticut Farms,
Springfield, and Yorktown.
After having fought in the Battle of
Springfield on June 23, 1780, the Jersey Brigade was sent to several posts to
protect the New Jersey side of the Hudson from British incursions. In
October they camped at West Point in anticipation of remaining there for the
winter, but instead were ordered to take up winter quarters in Pompton, New
Jersey. Colonel William Maxwell resigned from service before the end of
The fortifications at West Point, New York
were always seen as vital to the survival of the revolutionary cause.
Located on easily defended high cliffs over the Hudson River, this post
prevented British troops and supplies from moving between the loyalist Hudson
Valley and New York City. By September 1780, Benedict Arnolds plot to
surrender West Point to the British had been foiled, and the main body of the
Continental Army was encamped for the winter in the Hudson Highlands.
Boatner III, Mark Mayo, Encyclopedia of
the American Revolution, (David McKay, New York, 1966).
The source of this collection is unknown.
This volume is an orderly book used by
Captain John Ross (fl. 1775-1782) of the Jersey Brigade at their headquarters in
West Point, New York from October 10-30, 1780. An orderly book is usually used
by the orderly sergeants or the aide de camp to enter general and regimental
orders, and there is usually one for each company. Typical orders recorded
regard troop movements and formation, procurement of uniforms, repair of arms,
rations of food and rum, court marshal proceedings, and civilian complaints.
For other orderly books see:
Processed by Luis Delfino, May 2001 as part of the “Farm to City”
project funded by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records