Ten Brilliant Days in the World's History - January 3
- 2013 3 Jan
Frederick the Great of Prussia called these ten days "the most brilliant in the world's history." After winning the Battle of Trenton, Christmas night, George Washington's small force met General Cornwallis' 8,000 man British army. The night before the battle, Washington left his campfires burning and silently marched his soldiers around the back of the British camp at Princeton, New Jersey. At daybreak, JANUARY 3, 1777, Washington attacked, capturing three regiments of British troops. Enthusiasm swept America. Yale President Ezra Stiles stated in an Election Address before the Governor and General Assembly of Connecticut: "In our lowest and most dangerous state, in 1776 and 1777, we sustained ourselves against the British Army of 60,000 troops, commanded by...the ablest generals Britain could procure throughout Europe, with a naval force of 22,000 seamen in above 80 men-of-war. Who but a Washington, inspired by Heaven, could have conceived the surprise move upon the enemy at Princeton-or that Christmas eve when Washington and his army crossed the Delaware?" Ezra Stiles concluded: "The United States are under peculiar obligations to become a holy people unto the Lord our God."