In June, 1777, Sir William Howe
tried to outgeneral Washington
in New Jersey
, but failed, and was compelled to retreat.
firmly in check at and near New Brunswick
, on the Raritan
; and on June 20 the former, with his army at Middlebrook
, learned that his antagonist was preparing to fall back to Amboy
Hoping to cut off his rearguard, Washington
ordered (June 21) Maxwell
to lie between New Brunswick
, and Sullivan
to join Greene
near the former place, while the main body should rest within supporting distance.
These orders failed of execution On the morning of the 22d the column of Germans, under De Heister
, began its march towards Amboy
The corps of Cornwallis moved more slowly, for it had to cross the Raritan
over a narrow bridge, near the end of which stood Howe
, on high ground, watching the movements Greene
had a battery of three guns on a hill, but too far distant to be effective When more than one-half of Cornwallis's column had passed the bridge, his pickets were fiercely attacked by Morgan
with his riflemen, and were driven back upon the main column.
instantly put himself at the head of the two nearest regiments to meet the attack, when a sharp skirmish for half an hour occurred The British artillery, having been brought to bear on Morgan
's corps, swept the woods with grape-shot and caused the riflemen to retreat.
Between fifty and 100 of the British
were killed or wounded The rest of their march to Amboy