In annual tradition, Washington’s crossing is brought to life

BY Leah Mishkin, Correspondent |

The year is 1776 and men and women are preparing to cross the Delaware during the War for Independence.

“Although we are cold, we are hungry, we barely have any food, and most of us don’t have shoes, we are warmed by the fact that we will soon be in Trenton,” said historical re-enactor Ian Rose.

On our quest to find Gen. George Washington, we learned from re-enactors that the Americans have been losing all the battles up until this point and that they’ve been chased out of New York and Philadelphia. The enlistment of the Continental Army was up in about a week so Washington knew he had to do something big or the revolution would be lost.

“He devised a plan to go across the Delaware River in three places and attack the Hessians in Trenton,” said historical re-enactor Algernon Ward. “They’re some of the best soldiers in the British Army.”

We found the general and asked him about his strategy going into battle.

“Our strategy, I don’t know if I should say this because I don’t know who’s listening to your show on the New Jersey side,” said the re-enactor portraying Washington.

The general says they’re supposed to have 2,400 men when they all come back from their camps.

On this day in 2018 the river was too rough for re-enactors to cross. Last year, they couldn’t because of strong winds.

“But George Washington pressed forward. He marched the nine miles from here to Trenton and he caught the Hessians off guard,” said Algernon.

The battle would be the turning point of the American Revolution.