Monmouth, battle of

Monmouth, battle of, in the American Revolution, fought June 28, 1778, near the village of Monmouth Courthouse (now Freehold, N.J.). Gen. George Washington chose this location to attack the British troops, who were retreating from Philadelphia to New York City. Gen. Charles Lee launched the assault but without warning ordered a retreat. The British, under Sir Henry Clinton, immediately counterattacked, and only the arrival of Washington and Baron von Steuben prevented an American rout. Steuben re-formed Lee's disordered troops and led them back to battle, but the British forces escaped during the night. Lee was later court-martialed and suspended from command for disobeying orders. The legend of Molly Pitcher grew from this battle.

See W. S. Stryker, The Battle of Monmouth (1927, repr. 1970).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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