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American Revolution History by ColonialAmerica.com
American Revolution History by ColonialAmerica.com
Legend: Selected Site Area Merchant Site Historic Site Historic Marker Historic Shipwreck
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1776 Mayflower : A Story of Courage, Community, and War
The Federalist Papers Bunker Hill: A City, a Siege, a Revolution
Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis Thomas Jefferson and the Opening of the American West John Adams
Benjamin Franklin : An American Life The Bloody & Brave History of Native American Warriors & the Women Who Supported Them
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We the Kids : The Preamble to the Constitution of the United States The New Americans : Colonial Times: 1620-1689 (The American Story)
The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism & Treachery A History of US: Vol 3, From Colonies to Country (A History of Us)
Let It Begin Here!: Lexington & Concord: First Battles of the American Revolution George Washington, Spymaster: How the Americans Outspied the British and Won the Revolutionary War
They Called Her Molly Pitcher Now &  Ben : The Modern Inventions of Benjamin Franklin


Pirates and Traders: Gold! Hidden Treasures Hidden Object
Dedaloop (Kindle Fire Edition) Word Treasure
Treasure Island, The Experience Robinson Crusoe
The Patriots Hero Tales from American History - AudioBook

Selected Site

Saratoga National Historic Park

648 Route 32
Stillwater, NY, 12170




Click on heading to visit the website (excludes markers).

Nearby Historical Markers

225th Anniversary Battles of Saratoga



STILLWATER, NY, 12170


Turning point in the
struggle for an independent
United States of America

Saratoga Battle Chapter
Sons of the American Revolution
4 July 2002

Originally placed in honor of our
Nation’s Bicentennial


American Encampment and General Headquarters



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Mid-September of 1777 found an American army of 8,500 encamped on these uplands, called Bemis Heights. The soldiers worked feverishly building fortifications to block the Crown Forces marching from the north.

You can see the site of American Horatio Gates’ headquarters and the field hospital about ¼ mile to the south.

American River Defense



STILLWATER, NY, 12170

Standing here in the summer of 1777, with you back to the invading Crown Forces, you would have seen the eastern leg of the American fortifications which surrounded Bemis Heights. The white stakes across the ravine mark the southern end of these log-and-earth defenses.

The modern highway on your left follows the traces of the old wagon road to Albany, route of the Crown Forces seeking to push southward. However, American cannon, skillfully positioned behind fortifications atop the bluff where you now stand commanded the Albany Road. Batteries on the flats below blocked use of the river. Red dash-line diagrams on the map show the range of typical cannons.

American River Fortifications



STILLWATER, NY, 12170

Skillful military engineering converted this bluff into a stronghold. Gun batteries on the river flats below commanded even the hills on the other side of the river. Behind you, across the ravine, was the main American line. It was this the British had to face when they tried to bypass the river fortifications here.

Americans Attack



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Still caught in the frenzy of fighting at the Barber Wheat Field, American troops launched savage attacks across this area in a vain attempt to drive the Crown Forces from these fortifications.

Anchor of the American Line



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Artillery and infantry positions along this bluff commanded the road to Albany. This defense line forced the British army to fight on American terms.

Arnold’s Assault



Stillwater, NY, 12170

While Morgan’s Light Corps, the 5th and 6th Massachusetts Continentals and other American troops attacked the Breymann Redoubt from the front, the intrepid Benedict Arnold - without a command of his own - joined a handful of Americans in a daring assault from the rear. Near this spot Arnold was shot in the leg. The nameless "Boot Monument" symbolizes his bravery as well as his subsequent treason.

Asa Chatfield Farm



Stillwater, NY, 12170

The farmhouse which stood near here was used as an American observation post. Between the engagements, Patriot pickets held the near side of the Middle Ravine; British pickets, the far side.

Bemis Heights



Stillwater, NY, 12170

You are on the crest of Bemis Heights at the apex of the American defense lines. Nearby were a fortified barn, batteries, infantry breastworks, hospital, headquarters and encampment sites.

Benedict Arnold Boot Monument



Stillwater, NY, 12170


Erected 1887 by
John Watts de Peyster
Brev. Maj. Gen. S.N.Y.
2nd V. Pres’t Saratoga Mon’t Ass’t’n
In memory of
the "most brilliant soldier" of the
Continental Army,
who was desperately wounded
on this spot, the sally port of
Burgoynes "Great (Western) Redoubt"
7th October 1777,
winning for his countrymen
the Decisive Battle of the
American Revolution
and for himself the rank of
Major General


Bloody Knoll



Stillwater, NY, 12170

This reconstruction is one of two small outworks that were built to provide forward protection for the much larger Balcarres Redoubt. The knoll derives its name from the many casualties suffered in this area during the fighting of October 7, 1777.

Inset Marker:
In the heated rage of battle occurring here on October 7, 1777, this small British outpost was captured by American soldiers. Their gain came with great losses, and with the deep frustration of being unable to capture the Balcarres Redoubt, just a short distance away.

Brig. Gen. Abraham Ten Broeck



Stillwater, NY, 12170


To commemorate
the services of
Brig.-Gen. Abraham Ten Broeck
and the
Albany County Militia
in the
Battle of October 7, 1777

This monument
is erected by
Philip Livingston Chapter
Sons of the Revolution
in the State of New York
1917


Brigadier General Simon Fraser



STILLWATER, NY, 12170


Born: Invernesshire, Scotland
Died: Saratoga, New York

This memorial commemorates the death and burial October 8, 1777 of General Simon Fraser, a loyal Highlander, trusted soldier, and respected leader of Burgoyne’s advance corps who was mortally wounded during the second Battle of Saratoga, dedicated this 31st day of August 1986 on behalf of all his fellow Fraser clansmen.

Burgoyne’s Headquarters



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Scaled in size according to the rank of the occupant, Crown Force officers’ tents - or marquees - graced the American wilderness with fluttering pennants, elegant fringe and elaborate awnings and breezeways. The several large, colorful marquees that marked the headquarters of Lt. General John Burgoyne stood near this site between September 19 and October 7, 1777, together with those of his staff officers and aides.

Burgoyne’s Retreat



Stillwater, NY, 12170

On the night of October 8, Burgoyne began his retreat northward. At Saratoga (Schuylerville) his army was surrounded by the Americans. After a week of siege, Burgoyne surrendered on October 17, 1777, by the terms of the Convention of Saratoga.

American victory at Saratoga proved to be the turning point of the Revolution. It encouraged France and other European powers to take up arms against England and to aid the American cause.

Burial Site of General Fraser



Stillwater, NY, 12170


The British General Simon Fraser, mortally wounded during the battle of October 7, 1777, was buried near this site the following day.

Colonel Joseph Cilly



Stillwater, NY, 12170

At the height of the fighting in the Barber Wheat Field, when New Hampshire Continentals overran two British cannons, an excited American officer, Colonel Joseph Cilly, leaped upon one of the smoking guns to claim it for the Patriots’ cause.

Crown Forces



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Crown Forces beat off repeated American attacks against this fortified position from about 3:30 in the afternoon until dusk on October 7, 1777.

Crown Forces Artillery Park



Stillwater, NY, 12170

When Burgoyne ordered his army into retreat, the Crown Forces Artillery Park - located on the flat area below and to your right - became a scene of frantic activity. The artillery equipment assembled there - larger field guns and limbers, spare carriages, carts for ammunition and tools, supply wagons, even carriages for pontoons used to bridge rivers - all had to be hitched to oxen or horses and brought into line.

Crown Forces Baggage Park



Stillwater, NY, 12170

When the order came to retreat, the civilian teamsters contracted by the British - many from Canada - began harnessing teams of horses and yoking pairs of bawling oxen in the Baggage Park on the flat directly below you. Wagons and two-wheeled carts not already loaded were hurriedly piled with officers’ bedding, trunks and beds, pots and pans, barrels and sacks of foodstuffs.

Dirck Swart House



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Headquarters Aug. 3 - 14, 1777,
of Gen. Philip Schuyler.
Arnold marched from here to
relief of Fort Stanwix.


Earthworks



Stillwater, NY, 12170


On the wooded hill
to the left stand
Earthworks
thrown up by Amer. Army
before the Battle of Saratoga
1777
State Education Department 1932


Ferry Lane



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Oct. 1777 Burgoyne’s Brunswick
troops marched through this
lane to Vandenburgh Ferry and
prison camp at Cambridge, Mass.


Freeman House



Stillwater, NY, 12170

The first battle of Saratoga was fought here on September 19, 1777. The map shows the troop positions. British forces drove the Americans from this place immediately around Freeman’s farmhouse. Then the British fortified the area, including the buildings, with earthen and log parapet walls, entrenched, and vainly waited for reinforcements to come.

Gen. Henry Knox Trail



Stillwater, NY, 12170


Through this place passed
Gen. Henry Knox
in the winter of 1775-1776
to deliver to
Gen. George Washington
at Cambridge
the train of artillery
from Fort Ticonderoga
used to force the British
Army to evacuate Boston

Erected by
The State of New York
during the sesquicentennial
of the American Revolution


Gen. Henry Knox Trail



Stillwater, NY, 12170


Through this place passed
Gen. Henry Knox
in the winter of 1775-1776
to deliver to
Gen. George Washington
at Cambridge
the train of artillery
from Fort Ticonderoga
used to force the British
Army to evacuate Boston

Erected by
The State of New York
during the sesquicentennial
of the American Revolution


General Fraser Was Struck



Stillwater, NY, 12170

As the carnage in the Barber Wheat Field neared an end, Brigadier General Simon Fraser was struck by a rifle ball while directing a holding action to cover the retreat. Grievously wounded, the brave British general was carried from the battlefield.

John Neilson House and Farm



Stillwater, NY, 12170

John Neilson, who farmed this land, cast his lot with the Patriot cause. The building you see is a restoration of his original home. By mid-September 1777, the American Army had taken over Neilson’s house and barn, and enclosed much of his farm within its defenses.

Kosciuszko



Stillwater, NY, 12170


In memory of
The Noble Son of Poland
Brig. General
Thaddeus Kosciuszko
Military Engineer
Soldier of the War of Independence
who under the command of General Gates
selected and fortified these fields
for the great Battle of Saratoga
in which the invader was vanquished
and American freedom assured

Erected by his compatriots
A. D. 1936


Back of Monument:
Pomnik Ten
Wystawili Polacy
Z
Albany
Amsterdam
Cohoes
Schenectady
Troy
Watervliet
I Okolicy
1936


Main British Encampment



Stillwater, NY, 12170

In marked contrast to the officers’ marquees were hundreds of enlisted men’s tents. The main British encampment of some 4,000 soldiers extended east of Balcarres Redoubt to beyond the crest of the rise in front of you and to your left.

Markers in the field before you correspond to the flags in the illustration and indicate the boundaries of a regimental camp. There were seven such regimental camps in this main encampment.

Main Crown Forces Hospital



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Burgoyne’s retreating army was forces to leave its sick and wounded to the care of the Americans. The main British medical facilities were located on the flat area below and to your right.

New Hampshire Memorial



Stillwater, NY, 12170


"I dedicate this gun to the American Cause."
Colonel Joseph Cilley

In honor of
Enoch Poor
Brigadier-General of the New Hampshire troops

Joseph Cilley
Colonel of the First Regiment

Henry Dearborn
Colonel of the Second Regiment

Alexander Scammel
Colonel of the Third Regiment

and the
New Hampshire Men
who fought in these decisive battles
---------------


North Redan



Stillwater, NY, 12170

If the ‘redcoats’ had advanced down the road below toward Albany the guns of this strongpoint would have been the first to greet them. In 1777 the road swung from its present route diagonally across the fields below you toward the river.

Patriots’ Eye-View



STILLWATER, NY, 12170

The road and river below led to Albany. They were Burgoyne’s invasion route. Americans watched and waited here for him to come.

Prelude to History



Stillwater, NY, 12170

When news of the British invasion reached the farmers who tilled these fields, some went north to join the Crown Forces. Such a loyalist was John Freeman.

On a hot summer afternoon in 1777, one of Freeman’s neighbors who stayed to fight for the Patriot cause may have paused thoughtfully as he passed his old friend’s abandoned fields and home.

Travel back in time as you walk this ground where history was made. Press the "History Now" button and listen to a presentation especially prepared to help you relive the exciting events which took place in what is now Saratoga National Historic Park.

Redoubt



STILLWATER, NY, 12170

Here stood one of the strongest units of the American river fortifications. It was strengthened by the water batteries along the river.

Site of Chatfield Farm



Stillwater, NY, 12170

American and British advance pickets often exchanged musket fire across Middle Ravine during the weeks that followed the Battle of September 19, 1777.

Then, on the afternoon of October 7, excited American pickets reported large formations of Crown Forces advancing southward.

Site of the Taylor Cabin



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Grievously wounded, General Simon Fraser was carried here to the Taylor cabin, which had been taken over as a residence by Baroness Riedesel, the wife of the German commander.

The bleeding general was brought into the room, where a cheerful dinner party to which he had been invited was being held. Simon Fraser died at 8 o'clock on the morning of October 8, 1777.

Stillwater Blockhouse



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Blockhouse
Replica of an 18th century
blockhouse. Built in 1927.
Original visitor center at
Saratoga Battlefield.
Moved to this site in 1999.


Strategy and Terrain



Stillwater, NY, 12170

By closing the road and river, the Americans forced the British into rough, wooded lands where they could not use their infantry and artillery to best advantage.

Thaddeus Kosciusko



STILLWATER, NY, 12170

Thaddeus Kosciusko, a Polish military engineer and volunteer in the American cause, directed the building of fortifications to block the British Invasion.

The Balcarres Redoubt



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Stunned and reeling from fighting in Barber’s Wheat Field, Crown Forces were able to re-form here behind previously constructed defenses. These log-and-earth walls had been built shortly after September 19, 1777. These fortifications are now known as the Balcarres Redoubt, named after the British officer who commanded the British Light Infantry stationed here.

The Battle Begins at Barber’s Wheat Field



Stillwater, NY, 12170

The fighting began where you now stand and in the woods behind you in mid-afternoon of October 7, 1777. Within minutes, more than 4,000 men collided in savage combat along a line stretching westward across the Barber Wheat Field in front of you and into the clearing on the far hillside.

This panorama recreates the struggle at the moment when the Americans gained the advantage. In the foreground, Patriots pour murderous volleys into the retreating British Grenadiers. Smoke in the far distance marks the crumbling British right flank.

In the middle ground, though still fighting valiantly, German and English ranks are giving way to the American onslaught.

The Battle of Freeman’s Farm



Stillwater, NY, 12170

In the fields before you, the first action of the Battle of Saratoga began. Shortly after noon on September 19, American pickets posted in the Freeman House fired on advance elements of the center column of the British army. The Americans were driven back. After a lull, general fighting followed, and these fields changed hands several times. Then, German troops under Baron von Riedesel arrived from the river road and struck the American flank, forcing the Patriots to withdraw to Bemis Heights. The British had possession of these fields but their advance on Albany had been halted.

The Breymann Redoubt



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Failing to capture the Balcarres Redoubt, the Americans surged against Crown Forces’ fortifications built here. Attacking relentlessly, they overwhelmed this important defensive position just before nightfall, October 7, 1777.

Never more than a crude barrier of logs, this fortification is now known as the Breymann Redoubt, named after the German officer who commanded the German Grenadier defenders.

The British Advance on Bemis Heights



Stillwater, NY, 12170

On October 7, General Burgoyne sent 1,500 men and 10 cannon to flank the American position on Bemis Heights. The Patriots intercepted the British here in the Barber wheatfield and the battle was on again.

The British Withdraw



Stillwater, NY, 12170

As the action of October 7 developed, the British right and left flanks began to break under the American attack. General Simon Fraser was mortally wounded a few yards northwest of here (to your left) while trying to rally the British 24th Regiment. General Learned’s Brigade, now led by Benedict Arnold, drove back the Germans in the center. The withdrawal became general as Burgoyne’s troops fell back to their fortifications on Freeman Farm.

The Great Redoubt



Stillwater, NY, 12170

Capture of the Breymann Redoubt forced Burgoyne to withdraw his army to a position centered on three fortifications shown on this map drawn by a British officer.

This is the site of the eastern wall of the second of these three fortifications which were referred to by the British as the "Great Redoubt." They were built sometime between September 19 and October 7, 1777.

The River Redoubts



Stillwater, NY, 12170

On these bluffs the British constructed three redoubts to protect their artillery park and hospital, located on the river flats below.

Timothy Murphy



Stillwater, NY, 12170

This monument is erected by the
Ancient Order of Hibernians
of Saratoga County
to the memory of
Timothy Murphy

Celebrated marksman of Colonel Morgan’s Rifle Corps whose unerring aim turned the tide of battle by the death of the British General Frazer on October 7, 1777. Thereby adding to the world’s history one of its decisive battles.

In this monument is commemorated heroic deeds of hundreds of other soldiers of Irish blood who laid down their lives on this bloody field that the United States might be triumphant.

Plot 200 feet square purchased by the A.O.H. September 20, 1913.

Committee
Rev. P.J. Donnelly, Pres.
D.J. Falvey, Vice Pres.         W.J. Burke, Treas.

< Lower Marker >
Rededicated
July 4, 1976
Ancient Order of Hiberians
and
Ladies Auxiliary


Unknown American Soldiers



Stillwater, NY, 12170


The Unknown American Soldiers who perished in the Battles of Saratoga September 19 and October 7, 1777 and were here buried in unmarked graves helped to assure the triumph of the War of Independence, to create the Republic of the United States of America and to establish Liberty throughout the world.
In honor of these patriots and in recognition of the Bicentennial of the birth of George Washington this memorial is erected by the Daughters of the American Revolution of New York State 1931.

Unknown Soldiers



STILLWATER, NY, 12170


In memory of
unknown soldiers
reinterred here

Dedicated
Sept. 19, 1987


Zebulon Bidwell



Stillwater, NY, 12170


Captain 4th Company
Colonel Thaddeus Cook’s Regiment
Connecticut Militia
Killed here in the Battle
of Saratoga
September 19, 1777

Erected by Bidwell Family Association
September 19, 1924


Community Histories


Stillwater

Stillwater

The area was occupied by Iroquois and Mohican natives when the colonial period began.

In 1709, Peter Schuyler built Fort Ingoldsby in town because of its location on the frontier of the French and Indian Wars. A replica of Schuyler's fort currently serves as the Stillwater Blockhouse Museum.

Settlers began arriving after 1730.

During the American Revolution, residents participated in the war, and part of the Battle of Saratoga was fought in the town so that the town now refers to itself as the turning point of the American Revolution.

Stillwater was established as a town in 1791, when Saratoga County was formed. In 1816, the hamlet of Stillwater incorporated as a village.

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stillwater_(town),_New_York", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0