CITY OF ELIZABETH TO HOST HISTORICAL RE-ENACTMENT: ATTACK ON ELIZABETHTOWN

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Kelly Vence
908-820-4124
Public Information Office
 
CITY OF ELIZABETH TO HOST HISTORICAL RE-ENACTMENT: ATTACK ON ELIZABETHTOWN 
 
ELIZABETH, NJ—October 16, 2014 - On Sunday, October 19th at 11:00 a.m., the City of Elizabeth will be teaming up with the Elizabethtown 350th Anniversary Committee to host an Attack on Elizabethtown historical re-enactment in honor of the 350th Anniversary Celebration. The re-staging of events will be presented by 200 Revolutionary War re-enactors from the Brigade of the American Revolution, a non-profit living history association.
 
“As the first capital of New Jersey, home to our first Governor and the first Colonial Assembly, Elizabeth has played a vital role in the past of our state and nation,” said Mayor J. Christian Bollwage. “This historical event is a great way to share the history of our City with all of those who attend. I would like to thank the 350th Committee for coordinating this experience as well as for hosting the 2014 event series throughout Elizabeth.”
 
Between 1776 and 1782, Elizabethtown experienced approximately seventy-five raids, skirmishes and battles crucial to the struggle for democracy. Elizabethtown was on the front lines of the War for Independence, when the British captured NYC & Staten Island in 1776, until the war’s end in 1783.  
 
After the Battle of Connecticut Farms, June 7, 1780, Hessian Brigadier General Knyphausen had settled in a defensive position at Elizabethtown Point, while his advance forces carried the fight. During a raid on January 25, 1780, The First Presbyterian Church was burned. The raid was led by Cornelius Hetfield, a Staten Island Tory originally from Elizabethtown, whose father was an Elder of the church. 
 
As the scene of almost daily combat, Elizabethtown was fundamentally desolate land for two weeks. This situation was like an open invitation to steal; as the British and Hessians demonstrated by looting as a group. After the Battle of Springfield, on June 23rd, 1780, Knyphausen, withdrew from NJ and crossed to Staten Island on a pontoon bridge.  This was last foreign Army to be on our shores.  
 
Elizabethtown became the first capital of New Jersey and from the days of the City’s founding, many prominent individuals have walked its streets. Alexander Hamilton called Elizabeth home for a time during his youth and George Washington lunched at Boxwood Hall before heading to New York to be sworn in as the first President of the United States in 1789. The locations that played host to these noted figures and impressive events have been preserved and commemorated through the numerous memorials, historic sites and statues that grace the City's landscape.
 
This running street battle will begin on Elizabeth Avenue at Union Square, which is the site of the wounding of British Brigadier Stirling on June 6, 1780.  It will conclude at the First Presbyterian Church on Broad Street, where the churchyard contains the tomb of Reverend James and Hannah Caldwell as well as many of the Jersey Line and Militia, officers and men.
 
If anyone would like more information on any of the 350th Anniversary events or the Elizabethtown 350th itself, please visit http://www.goelizabethnj.com/350/.