The Neutral Ground of New Jersey during the Revolution


The area along the Hudson River ( the North River) from above the New York border south to beyond Sandy Hook, was called the Neutral ground. The British held Manhattan, Staten and Long Islands, and with its navy was able to dominate the shore. The area was not controlled by the American's, because the British could row over the river to attack at any point or time, and the manpower to protect all of it was not available. The British could not hold the ground against the American's, without risking their men being attacked piecemeal, except in certain fortified places such as Paulis Hook. Raids across the river in both directions were common. It became a no-man's land between the lines, only in name under American government.

Loyalists or Tories were also common, much more so than in inland areas, influenced by the projected power of the British army. These Loyalist were themselves under constant threat of arrest while in the state- they could be arrested for treason for any activity helping the British, their lands confiscated. Loyalists who fled this threat and went to New York city were called Refugees. The Refugees were the bitter enemies of the Whig patriots, and each side fought a brutal civil war against the other in the Neutral Ground.

Raiding was done for a variety of military purposes, foraging, and out of hatred for the other side. To have prisoners to exchange, both sides tried to capture men from the enemy.

In a personal account called Yankee Doodle, by Joseph Plumb Martin, Martin describes being stationed with his Continental regiment in Woodbridge, and having to move each night to a differant house to avoid enemy night raiders capturing them. (See Poor Twist, the death of a soldier) Both sides tried to capture, or kill each other in this area, Loyalist looking for patriots, Patriots looking for Tories: military or civilians did not matter. If you took a stand you were a target. Militia men recorded having to visit their homes condestonly, and never having a chance to work their farms during the entire war!

Here is a letter about an action in Monmouth, which was frequently raided:


Adam Hubley letter to an unknown person, January 4th, 1777.

Majors Adam Hubley (Col. Penrose's 10th Pennsylvania regiment) and Jonathan Mifflin were sent by Brigadier General Thomas Mifflin, with 200 men, to Monmouth following the advance into Bordontown by General John Cadwalader's troops on December 27th. They were to drive the Loyalist in the area out.
Monmouth was raided frequently during the war, having easy access to the sea in the east. Loyalist were a continuing problem.
He also mentions the fighting at Princeton.

From " A Salute to Courage" edited by Dennis P. Ryan, 1979, Columbia Univ. Press, page 60

Bordentown, January 4th, 1777

I am just arrived with Major Mifflin from an expedition in the lower parts of the Jerseys, a place called Monmouth Court House. We arrived there Thursday evening, we were informed of a party of Men consisting of about 200 under the Command of Col. Morris [Col. John Morris was a NJ loyalist], we there had our party (120 in number) formed in proper order and intended to attack them in Town, about half an Hour before night Col. Morris it seems got acct. of our Arrival, had his men drawn up and baggage loaded in order to move off for Middletown about 18 Miles below the Court House, they pushed of [sic] from Town and got about half a Mile within Sight of us, we immediately pushed after them when they made a Halt, we came up about a Qr. Of an Hour before Night when we engaged them, they stood us about 8 minutes a very heavy fire was kept up on both sides during that time, the enemy at last gave way and retreated very precipitously----at this time it was quite dark, & we could not see what loss the Enemy sustained--- on our side we had none killed-we marched from the field to the Town and lodged there brought 4 dead Bodies in which we buried. We took during the engagement 23 Prisoners which we brought to this place---we also took from the Enemy 7 Waggon loads of Stores &c & 12 Horses. I shall set off for Burlington this day to meet Col. Penrose who commands there.
Various will be the Accts. of the Movements of ourselves. This you may depend on is as nearly the State as Possible, after our people engaged the British Troops at Trenton-after a severe engagement we retreated from Trenton and took round toward Princetown. This retreat was ordered on purpose, which has proved since to be good Generalship, where our people took between 5 & 600 Prisoners, they had a have taken all there [sic] Stores &ca. to a very great amount our Army has now removed before now is in our hands, General How with his main body is now between us, and in all probability must fall in our hands, the Enemy had a vast number Killed at Princetown, our Philadelphia Association behaved like brave soldiers on this Occasion, they fought the enemy for some Considerable time regular in Platoon Fires & repeated them twice. I think I shall have the pleasure of giving you a very good account of our Enemy in a few Days. A Number of our Philada. Association fell on this occasion. I am etca.

Adam Hubley Jr.

The British needed supplies from the area surrounding New York City. Not only fresh food and fodder for their horses, but also fire wood. Being within sight across the river, Bergan County suffered great depredations, and accordingly had many militia actions.


One of these militia companies was lead by Captain John Outwater, a very active patriot who served throughout the war. In the book, The Revolutionary War in the Hackensack Valley, by Adrian Leiby, Rutgers Univ. Press, this company is mentioned several times, and is a good example of what militia men did in the neutral ground, as these excerpts will show. Not to mention I re-enact this unit!

Excerpts from The Revolutionary War in the Hackensack Valley, by Adrian Leiby, Rutgers Univ. Press,

Page 151

(David Bogert), the son of Nicholas Bogert and Alida Ritzema, he was born in New York City on February 3, 1763. He was thirteen or fourteen years old when Captain Outwater's company of state troops was formed at Hackensack, where he was then living, but he joined at once and "was with the company in all the services they performed at least two years before he was enrolled as one of the company." He was appointed corporal early in 1779, "taken prisoner in a skirmish at Bergen and after his exchange in December, and resuming his duties in the company, he continued so to act." Lieutenant Terhune commanded the party when Bogert and Lozier were taken. Bogert "was carried before Major General Pattison, the British commander in New York and in the street he was separated from his companion John Lozier (who was taken with him), he [Lozier] was scnt to the Provost . . . and deponent to Sugar House." Bogert, "in 1779 drew rations of flour, pork and whiskey till he was taken prisoner and eight dollars as one month's pay and that was all the compensation he ever received' except that the State of New Jersey has since paid him for his musquet and accoutrements taken with him." Bogert did not exaggerate when he said in his pension application more than a half century later that there was little rest for the soldiers of that period.6l

60 Riker, History of Harlem (1904 ed.), 459. Bogert livcd to he seventy-six despite his imprisonment. Idem.

6l Affidavits of Henry Berdan and David R. Bogert, Pension Records, W3502. Bogert's old lieutenant, Adam Boyd, then very sick, was unable to help. He "emphatically said, My dear sir, you and your family have suffered everything and if anything can be got you ought to have it, but how can you expect that 1, 86 years old and nearly in the grave, should remember your services." Idem.


Note that while militia men were supposed to be paid, it rarely happened, probably due to the general lack of money available during the war, with the state deeply in debt and towns behind in their taxes constantly.

Raids were both large and small in the Neutral Ground. Some involved only a few men, others were in fact invasions of a thousand or more men. Usually the British sent foraging raids of 1500 men into the country in the fall. The following is an account of a larger raid with several hundred men.

pages 239-244

At seven o'clock in the evening of March 22, 1780, three hundred British Regulars under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Duncan MacPherson, of the 42nd Regiment, the celebrated Black Watch, embarked at the Hay Wharf on Manhattan Island for the attack. A little before ten they landed at Weehawken. MacPherson reported:

From thence we marched and got to the Little Ferry on Hackensack River by twelve o'clock, over which the detachment was transported in a small whale boat and one canoe by three o'clock in the morning. Here I made the disposition for surprising Hackensack, to effectuate which I ordered a subaltern and twenty-five men of the 43rd Regiment to push on briskly until they got to the end of the town, next to New Bridge, there to halt and intercept every person who might make their escape; the remaining part of the detachment of the 43rd Regiment, with the fifty Anspachs, under the command of Captain Thorn of the 43rd, I ordered to follow and attack every house that should be pointed out to them by the guides and refugees, and to apprehend every man they found and bring them to Zabriskie's Mill, there to remain until the detachment returned from Paramus, and I have the pleasure to inform your excellency that the plan had the desired effect, the militia and the inhabitants being catched in their beds.28

Even in the perspective of two centuries the most that can be said in defense of the night's work at Hackensack was that it would not have happened if Britain's chief field officers had been in New York. [note, this was the time when Clinton was attacking Charleston, SC]

Lieutenant Colonel John Howard, of the British Guards, was to have moved from northern Manhattan at the same hour that MacPherson left the Hay Wharf, but he was delayed.

The boats from the obstructions met with at Kings Bridge, did not arrive [at Spuyten Duyvil] until half past ten o'clock, which occasioned our not reaching Closter Landing until twelve o'clock at night. The distance from thence to Paramus Church was at least seventeen miles from the detour we were obliged to make to come in the rear of the enemy's pickets, and to prevent our being discovered. As it was two hours after daybreak before we could possibly arrive at Paramus, and the surprise of the rebel posts could by no means be completed according to the plan first adopted, I took the liberty of ordering our men to load, and to make an alteration in the numbers detached under Lt. Cols. Stuart and Hall, as I had then learned the principal force was collected at Paramus Church.

I ordered Lt. Col. Stuart, with fifty men, to march on the road the east side of Saddle River, and Lt. Col. Hall, with sixty of the Light Infantry, to proceed to Hopper's house, taking with me one hundred ninety men on the road the west side of Saddle River, leading to their main body at Paramus, which I learned consisted of two hundred and fifty men. I have since learned from a deserter who came in on our retreat their numbers at the church were near three hundred.

I found them drawn up behind a stone wall before the church, afterwards they altered their position, with their left to a barn, part of them remaining behind the wall, and seemed determined to wait our coming up, but on ordering our men to form and attack, they immediately fled, and, as our soldiers had been greatly fatigued with a march of near eighteen miles, after pursuing them a mile and a half and taking twenty prisoners, as I found nothing more could be effected, ordered the men back to Paramus Bridge, to join Lt. Cols. Stuart and Hall, who had directions to meet us there.

The former surprised a corporal and six men. Another picket, in a house adjoining, of an officer and twenty men, had just time to run off, leaving their arms, thirty stand of which Lt. Col. Stuart destroyed in the house. Lt. Col. Hall surprised a picket of nine men, one of which got off. The main body at Hopper's house having received information half an hour before, the main body made their escape.29

MacPherson's party had meanwhile moved up to Paramus from Hackensack. "At half after five o'clock'" he reported, "I marched with the detachment from Hackensack, leaving Captain Thorn with one hundred men there for the purpose I have mentioned, and proceeded to Zabriskie's Mills, where I arrived a quarter of an hour after six o'clock, and from thence I continued marching toward Paramus without any opposition; and about a quarter after seven o'clock in the morning, we heard a scattering fire in our front. On this we pushed and got within a quarter of a mile of Paramus Church, when we observed the enemy run and Colonel Howard with the Guards in pursuit of them. Saddle River prevented my intercepting the fugitives. Here thirteen deserters joined us, and here I halted and sent to Col. Howard for orders, who sent me word that he with his detachment would join us immediately, which he accordingly did." 30 Zabriskie's Mills was about four miles from Hackensack; Paramus Church about five miles beyond Zabriskie's Mills.

The American report, though not so detailed about American retreats and losses, was not inconsistent with those of the British. Major Christopher Stuart wrote to General Washington:

I have the honor of informing your excellency that at six yesterday morning I received information of the enemy's being at Hackensack. In consequence . . . I gave the necessary orders for assembling the troops under my command (without the smallest expectation of their making my detachment their object at that hour), but the cantonments being so extensive prevented the troops collecting as Soon as I could wish. Having detached small parties different ways, and riding around the cantonments myself to gain intelligence, I heard a firing up the road leading to Kings Ferry [the road to the north], upon which I readily concluded it must be an attack made upon a Sergeant~s picket posted there, and were chiefly taken. Immediately after this the small detached parties returned, being pressed close by the enemy to my quarters.

Previous to this I had given directions to the two left companies to take post in an eminence opposite the church, to cover the retreat of the two companies cantoned on the right.

As soon as the enemy found their intentions were frustrated, they seemed more disposed to plunder than pursue us and immediately commenced their retreat from the church, down the Hackensack road, plundering indiscriminately,31

The Americans, who had not distinguished themselves in defense of their post,32 took heart when they saw the Regulars in rapid retreat, and some of them-one hundred, Major Stuart reported-began a vigorous harassing action, in which they were joined by about thirty Bergen County militia, who had been aroused by the firing. The militia, who had seen nothing of the British but their retreating backs, behaved with great spirit, doubtless with greater spirit than some of the Continentals, who had been retreating themselves earlier in the morning.33

"During the enemy's retreat," Stuart went on, "they did not discover an inclination to halt. The subaltern's party [kept] a continual fire on their rear, which obliged them to run without intermission from a mile below the church to the New Bridge (the distance not less than eleven miles), at which place I was induced to believe the friendly inhabitants would have assembled and endeavored to obstruct their retreat by hoisting or cutting away the bridge, but on my arrival finding that the militia had not collected according to my expectations, and the enemy having taken up the bridge and posted themselves on an eminence on the other side, I thought it prudent to retire to my station, the men having received no refreshment during the day. The officers and men in general behaved with spirit and discovered a great disposition to chastise them. I beg leave to mention Mr. Peter Fell, from whom we received much benefit." 34 If it was Peter Fell who had assured the Pennsylvania major that the people of Hackensack would be at the bridge, he did not know what Hackensack had suffered in the past twenty-four hours.

Even the Hessians remembered their expedition as a frustrating one, in which they were obliged to abandon more of their booty than they carried off,35 and the British themselves confirmed that they had "suffered some loss in our retreat, which the rebels, who had collected in force, harassed till we had passed the New Bridge." 33 Their casualty returns showed one rank and file killed, seventeen wounded and twelve missing, with one officer wounded. The Hessians reported nine killed, eighteen missing and a large number wounded.37 The time was long past when the British could attack Bergen County as a refreshment for their troops.

When the day was over it was obvious that it was the village of Hackensack, not the Continental army, which was the chief sufferer. MacPherson's British and Hessians had set fire to the courthouse and proceeded systematically to try to burn every patriot's home in the village. Fortunately, with a favorable wind and good luck, only the courthouse and two homes were actually burned to the ground, but the marauders broke down the doors and windows of every Whig's house they could reach and took everything of value they could carry off 38

When daylight came the few patriots who were left discovered that the raiders had taken off virtually every grown man in town, fifty or sixty in all. Among them were Abraham Haring, John Bant, Abraham Storms, John Van Antwerp, John Bogert, William Prevost, Henry Van Winkle, G. Van Wagenen, Morris Earl, John Durie, Jacobus Brouwer, William Brouwer, John Van Giesen, David Baldwin, Isaac Ver Valen, Peter Zabriskie, John Demarest, John Romeyn, Guiliam Bertholf, Jonathan Doremus, Christian Demarest, and five Negro slaves, Will, Jack, John, Venter and Hector.39 Some of them doubtless felt that the militia had been remiss in failing to have a patrol at Little Ferry through the night.


26 Varick to Schuyler, Feb. 1o, 1780, Schuyler Papers NYPL.

27 Hendrick Kuyper to Stuart, March 22, 178C, GW Papers LC.

28 McPherson Report of the Surprise of Hackensack and Paramus, March 23, 1780, HC Papers CL; Baurmeister 345, 346; 4 NJA (2) 252, 253, 257; NJHC 82; 1882, NYHS 107; MJFBC 137; Klyberg, Action at Paramus, 1960 BHSP 1. The local militia made such resistance as they could. Affidavits of John Lozier, Pension Records, W20525; and Abraham Vanderbeek, Pension Records, S1130.

29 Howard to Matthews, March 24, 1780, HC Papers CL.

30 McPherson Report, supra, HC Papers CL.

31 Stuart to Washington, March 25, 1780, GW Papers LC.

32 About one third of the Continental troops engaged in the battle were reported missing. Return of Wounded, March 25, 1780, GW Papers LC.

33 Stuart to Washington, March 25,1780, GW Papers LC.

34 Idem

35 BHSP (1908, 1909, 1910) 31
Family tradition has it that one of the passing soldiers fired a musket over the heads of slave children swinging on the bam door of the Zabriskie-Wessells-Board house on Paramus Road, the musket ball resting in the beam of the barn until the present century. Bogert, Paramus 57.

36 Howard to Matthews, March 24,1780, HC Papers CL.

37 Return of Wounded, March 23,1780, HC Papers CL; Baurmeister 246.

38 4 NJA (2) 252, 276. the burned houses belonged to Adam Boyd and Henry Chappel. Idem. See also affidavit of John Lozier, Pension Records, W20525.

39 4 NJA (2) 252; Wilson to Livingston, July 20, 1780, Livingston Papers, NYPI.. The names of others, thought to be of the Pennsylvania Line, are omitted. John Bant had spent five months and five days in a British prison on an earlier raid. Damages of British, NJSL, New Barbadoes Precinct 17. Captain Outwater and Hendrick Van Giesen were wounded during the attack, the latter evidently being the "young man of the town who was wounded by a spent ball, which cut his upper lip, knocked out four teeth and was caught in his mouth. Captain Outwater received a ball below the knee which was never extracted. He carried it for many years and it was buried with him." 4 NJA (z) 252; NJHC 83. William Prevost, one of the wealthier men of Hackensack, had also been a prisoner for several months in 1777. Fell Diary.

About this raid, the Hessian Johann Conrad Dohla wrote:


A Hessian diary, by Johann Conrad Dohla, edited by Bruce E. Burgoyne, University of Oklahoma Press

22 MARCH, 1780

During the evening, after tattoo, I went with a strong command. It was drawn from all the regiments which lay here in New York and consisted of 400 hundred men under the command of the Scottish Major Keevlington and Captain Tennenburg of the Hessians. We were carried in boats across the North River to the province of New Jersey. Then we marched almost the entire night, at the quickest pace and as silently as possible, mostly through forests. Toward three o'clock in the morning we reached Hackensack, a large and beautiful settlement consisting of about two hundred houses. This village was attacked and all houses were immediately broken into and everything ruined, doors, windows, boxes, and chests, everything lumped together and plundered. All the male were taken prisoners, and the town hall and some other splendid buildings were set on fire. We took considerable booty, money, silver pocket watches, silver plate and spoons, as well as furniture, good clothing, fine English linen, good silk stockings, gloves, and neckcloths, as well as other expensive silks, satins, and other materials. This village of Hackensack lies sixteen English miles from New York and has rich inhabitants.
23 March. At daybreak we again marched out of Hackensack. We wished to proceed two miles further to Pollingstown, a small city where we hoped to capture a rebel command of two hundred men. However, because we were betrayed by spies and the rebels came against us from all sides, we had to begin the return march. They would have taken all of us prisoner, because they were five or six times stronger than we were, if Colonel Emmerich of the English had not joined us with four hundred light infantry and jaegars. On the previous day they had been transferred across the North River beyond Kingsbridge and were to have supported us during the attack on Pollingstown. [Colonel Emminich] covered our flank as soon as he had joined us, and we slowly pulled back under a steady fire, which last more than six hours. During this time we threw away or discarded most of our furniture booty. At eight o'clock in the evening we again arrived at New York, after the enemy had followed us to the water of the North River. From this expedition we had dead three Scots, eleven English and Hessians, and Private Bar, of our regiment, made prisoner.
On this day my life was exposed to many hundreds of bullets. My booty, which I had been fortunate enough to retain, consisted of two silver pocket watches, three silver buckles, one pair of women's white cotton stockings, one pair of men's summer stockings, two men's and four women's shirts of fine English linen, two fine tablecloths, one silver food and tea spoon, five Spanish dollars and six York shillings in money, eleven complete mattress covers of fine linen, and more than two dozen pieces of silk fabric, as well as six silver plates and one silver drinking cup, all tied together in a pack which, because of the hasty march, I had to throw away.


A smaller raid, involving one Militia company and one British gunboat, and a major militia action against the Loyalist Blockhouse at Fort Lee.

Page 297 "The Revolutionary War in the Hackensack Valley"


Later in the spring another engagement took place a few miles south of the Hackensack courthouse. A British gunboat had come up the Hackensack to Moonachie Point, "plundered the inhabitants and carried off about twenty head of cattle." Captain Outwater collected his militia, "the cattle was retaken [and] the British routed with the loss of seven men killed and one prisoner." John Lozier, of Pompton, was an American casualty, shot through the thigh with a musket ball. "To stop the great effusion of blood from the wound [Abraham Vreeland] tore up his . . . shirt, with which the wound was dressed. . . . Lozier did not recover entirely from his wound till near a year later." 21 Vreeland carried him out of the salt marshes where the action occurred, first to the home of George Doremus, about eleven miles from Pompton, and after Lozier had somewhat improved, back to Pompton.22

The late spring of 1781 saw the whole force of the Bergen and Orange County militia in battle array for the only time during the war, in action against a Tory blockhouse at Fort Lee.23

About a hundred Refugees from New York City had occupied the old site of the fort and commenced to build a blockhouse there, moving back and forth across the Hudson in small boats under the protection of British warships. The move was a mistake. The time was long past when the patriot militia would sit idly by while Tories laid down a base for marauding at their very doors. Colonel Dey, with part of his forces, including Blanch's and Huyler's companies, tried to dislodge them by frontal attack on May 15, 1781, and failed. Three days later the colonel, with Major Goetschius, brought down upon the blockhouse the whole patriot military force of the Hackensack valley, several hundred men. John A. Haring recalled after the war that "it was the only occasion during the whole of his service that Colonel Dey or Major Goetschius was in personal command of declarant. There were several skirmishes, considerable number wounded and taken prisoner on both sides till at last we dislodged them," 24

20 Heath to Washington, March 14, 1781, GW Papers LC. Damages by British, NJSL, Harrington Precinct Nos. 39, 47, 48. "Two hundred soldiers of the standing forces came in to Tappan last Saturday and have one field piece with them. They lie four miles above the militia." Isaae Siscoe, British Intelligence, March 25, 1781, Emmet Coll., NYPL. About fifty militia were at New Bridge. Daniel Martin, idem.

21 Affidavit of John Lozier, Pension Records, W20525.

22 Affidavit of John Lozier, Pension Records, W20525; Abraham Vanderbeek, Pension Records, Sl130. When the pension application was made, in 1832, Lozier was too feeble to go to Hackensack. William Colfax reported that a few days before the old soldier "was actually denied credit at the stores in our vicinity for a gallon of molasses and a few pounds of sugar," a fact which Colfax had himself confirmed at the stores. Idem.

23 Affidavits of local soldiers, Pension Rccords, passim.

24 Affidavit of John A. Haring, Pension Records S6980, and most other pension records relating to local soldiers

Besides defending against raiders, the militia tried to stop the trade going into New York City.

Page 303 to 305 "The Revolutionary War in the Hackensack Valley"

There was little official fighting after Yorktown,but Tory and refugee raids into the Hackensack valley continued, and the illicit trade through the lines became bolder and bolder. Single farmers no longer carried a few pounds of butter to New York and a basket of salt back, commerical traders-both friend and foe now called them
"London traders"-brought salt up the Hackensack by the boatload and country produce back in the same quantity.45

Where once a farmer would drive a fat ox into New York by night, hiding it in the woods by day, by 1782 "herds of cattle [were] driven to the enemy from all quarters of this and the neighboring state," local people told the state authorities. The militia, they said, were "too weak and too much worn down with service and suffering" to help stop either the raids or the London traders.46 By the summer of 1782 it was clear enough that the war had been won so that local Tories and neutrals were busy fortifying themselves against an American victory. Unfortunately there were patriots willing to help. Captain Elias Romeyn of the Bergen County militia was tried and convicted by a court-martial for taking bribes from Tories along the Hackensack, after threatening that he would make Whigs sweat for complaining about him,47 and even the most hard-shelled Jersey Dutchmen knew the war was won when Fort Delancey was torn down and the hated Van Buskirks and their friends took ship for Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.48

In March, 1783, word of the Treaty of Paris of January 20, 1783, reached America, and the war was officially ended.49


45 Abraham Vanderbeek, "being ordered out on the bank of the Hackensack River to watch and detect London traders, at which place he discovered a boat in the said river of which he informed . . . [Captain Outwater] . . . when Vanderbeek, his captain and another of his comrades went with all speed to capture the same, on coming to it, the men had deserted and left the boat with twelve live sheep, which they took as a prize, which boat they towed up the said river and had the prize condemned." At another time Vanderbeek learned that a boat "on board of which was a quantity of salt" was coming up the Hackensack River ". . . in possession of London traders." Outwater, Vanderbeek and a few others went in pursuit of it, "but before they could come up with her they were informed that she had landed her salt at a private house in the neighborhood." They went to the house, seized the salt, and again took their prize before Justice Jacob Terhune to be condemned. Afffidavit of Abraham Vanderbeek, Pension Records, S1130.

[note that Sheriff Adam Boyd and Judge Terhune were also Officers in Outwater's company. They captured the material, took it to their own court to be condemned, and then often bought it at auction themselves. Not surprisingly, the Tories did not find this agreeable.]

46 Bergen Petition for providing for the Defense of the Frontier of the County, Nov. 8, 1782, NJSL.

4T 5 NJA (2) 430. Romeyn's troops were at the time "doing guard duty, and also to prevent illicit trade carried on (by a party called London Traders) with the British in the City of New York." Afffidavit of Abraham 1. Brouwer, Pension Records, \V~37o7. 48 Almost two centuries later many of the most distinguished families of Canada proudly bear Hackensack valley Dutch names. See e.g. Wertenbaker, Father Knickerbocker, Chap 1l; Fraser, passim; LYT NYPL, passim; Blauvelt, Banta, Demarest, Ryerson, and other genealogies.

49 Tory plundering parties were active almost to the day when the news arrived. "Near the close of the said war and but a short time before the news of peace arrived, a company consisting of thirty or forty men, under the command of Capt. John M. Hogenkamp composed of men of different companies, of whom the said John I. Blauvelt was one, marched into the state of New Jersey to a place called English Neighborhood, and not expecting to meet with an enemy, as peace was expected and it was thought that hostilities had ceased, was fired upon by a party of the British, Refugees and Tories, who lay in ambush, but fortunately all escaped unhurt but one man who was wounded in the knee and taken prisoner." Affidavit of John Blauvelt, Pension records W20721.

After the war, many Tories who did not wish to stay in Canada or Britian returned to Neurtral Ground. Incrediably, many of them soon took their lawful place back in society, however some patriots who had suffered their depredations kept a hatred against them that lasted into the early 20th century, carried on by their decendents.




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New Jersey during the Revolution

list of Site pages

I recommend also Captain John Outwater's Co. of Bergen county Militia web page.


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