Historic Markers Across Georgia



The Battle of Savannah



Marker ID:  
Location: 655 Louisville Road, Savannah, GA
County: Chatham
Coordinates: N 32° 04.560    W 081° 6.043
  32.076    -81.10071666
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: WMKDF2
The Battle of Savannah Marker  



Text:

The 1779 Battle of Savannah was one of the deadliest of the entire American Revolution. The overwhelming defeat of French and American forces resulted in an allied withdrawal and in approximately 800 wounded or killed, with British losses totaling 55 wounded or dead.

The British victory in Savannah rekindled England's spirit for the war, in part because the victory defeated troops of the regular army of France as well as American rebels. The battle marked the first time French regular army units fought on American soil in the Revolutionary War.

The international conflict that most Americans call the Revolutionary War involved British, French, Hessian, Irish, Polish, Haitian, Spanish, Dutch, Scottish, Native Americans and Americans of European and African heritage, many of whom were represented in Savannah.

Polish nobleman Casimir Pulaski, who held a brigadier general's commission from Congress, had fought unsuccessfully for Polish independence. He commanded the American cavalry and lost his life from a wound he received in the battle.

A young Henry Christophe participated with the allied army in Savannah. He went on to fight for the independence of Haiti from France and later became King Henry I of Haiti. He was one of the first heads of state of African descent in the Western Hemisphere.

The largest unit of black soldiers to fight in the American Revolution, the (now Haiti), fought in Savannah. Many of these free men and volunteers went on to lead Haiti's fight for independence.

British Major General Augustin Prevost was a Swiss professional soldier of French Huguenot descent with a French wife. His loyalty to the British Crown was never questioned.

Arthur Dillon, an Irish nobleman and expatriate, commanded a regiment that included Irish soldiers serving the King of France. He and his regiment were prominent in the Battle of Savannah.

The Swedish Baron Curt von Stedingk was wounded leading a French column in the attack. He was intimate in the court of Gustavus III, Louis XVI and Catherine the Great .

The day before the battle, Pierre Charles L'Enfant, who later designed Washington, D.C., tried to dismantle and set fire to the abatis, a barrier of sharpened tree limbs designed to slow attackers.


( Sidebar : )
Between pictures of two buttons: This is a button of the 60th Regiment, one of the regiments led by the British Major General Augustin Provost. Under his leadership, the British improved and built redoubts around Savannah in 1779.



 

The Battle of Savannah

Notes:

More information:
Wikipedia: American Revolutionary War
Wikipedia: Siege of Savannah
Wikipedia: Capture of Savannah
Wikipedia: Kazimierz Michał Wacław Wiktor Pułaski
French Military Units: Chasseurs-Volontaires de Saint-Domingue

 

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