Crown Point and Benedict Arnold

Benedict Arnold. Copy of engraving by H.B. Hall after John Trumbull, published 1879. Courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration.

On August 30, 1775, General Richard Montgomery departed Crown Point with 1,500 men in what would be a failed attempt to capture Quebec. By year’s end, he would be dead—and Benedict Arnold badly wounded.  Arnold and the survivors of the decimated Rebel army returned to Crown Point in June 1776, broken in body and spirit. Two months later, Arnold set sail with his undermanned fleet of ships to engage the British somewhere to the north. The result was Battle at Valcour Island on October 11, 1776. Fleeing from the pursuing British General Guy Carleton, Arnold subsequently ordered Crown Point burned and abandoned. By the third week in October, Carleton and his navy had arrived and taken over Crown Point, but with winter approaching, Carleton also abandoned Crown Point and headed back to Canada. By the end of June 1777, however, the British under General John Burgoyne had once again occupied the site as a staging area in preparation for what would be the Saratoga Campaign.

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