American Revolutionary War

Battle of Bound Brook
Hessians at the Battle of Bound Brook ©Don Troiani
1777 Apr 13

Battle of Bound Brook

Bound Brook, New Jersey, U.S.

The Battle of Bound Brook (April 13, 1777) was a surprise attack conducted by British and Hessian forces against a Continental Army outpost at Bound Brook, New Jersey during the American Revolutionary War. The British objective of capturing the entire garrison was not met, although prisoners were taken. The U.S. commander, Major General Benjamin Lincoln, left in great haste, abandoning papers and personal effects.


Late on the evening of April 12, 1777, four thousand British and Hessian troops under the command of Lieutenant General Charles Cornwallis marched from the British stronghold of New Brunswick. All but one detachment reached positions surrounding the outpost before the battle began near daybreak the next morning. During the battle, most of the 500-man garrison escaped by the unblocked route. U.S. reinforcements arrived in the afternoon, but not before the British plundered the outpost and began the return march to New Brunswick.


General Washington moved his army from its winter quarters at Morristown to a more forward position at Middlebrook in late May to better react to British moves. As General Howe prepared his Philadelphia campaign, he first moved a large portion of his army to Somerset Court House in mid-June, apparently in an attempt to draw Washington from the Middlebrook position. When this failed, Howe withdrew his army back to Perth Amboy, and embarked it on ships bound for the Chesapeake Bay. Northern and coastal New Jersey continued to be the site of skirmishing and raiding by the British forces that occupied New York City for the rest of the war.


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