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Major Battles of the American Revolution
Item 12 of 33
This park was part of the original plan for the city and appears in the 1804 Mangin Map of Paulus Hook. Today it is home to a large obelisk that commemorates the Battle of Paulus Hook. After achieving victory at Stony Point, Major Henry Lee convinced General George Washington to attack Paulus Hook. The Battle of Paulus Hook took place during the American Revolution on August 19, 1779, and ended in an American victory. The American victories at Stony Point and Paulus Hook played a role in changing Sir Henry Clinton's plans in the New York region as he began to look towards the southern campaign the following year. The battle resulted in 2 killed, three wounded, and seven captured on the American side, while the British endured 30 killed and injured, and 159 captured.

  • Battle of Paulus Hook historical marker.
  • A map of colonial Paulus Hook.
  • Paulus Hook Monument
The Paulus Hook garrison was built in the spring of 1776 by the orders of General William Alexander. Following the Americans' loss at Long Island in August, American troops abandoned the garrison, which was occupied by the British shortly after. By 1779, Colonel Abraham Van Buskirk commanded around 400 men at the outpost, in addition to reinforcements that could be signaled from New York. In July, hoping to reclaim the garrison, General George Washington issued General Anthony Wayne plans to attack Stony Point.

On July 16, the attack on Stony Point was carried out, resulting in a victory for the Americans. The success inspired Major Henry Lee to propose to General Washington the idea to attack Paulus Hook. Originally hesitant, Washington eventually agreed to the plan, and Lee assembled a group of 400 men to carry out the attack. On August 18, the Americans began traveling towards Paulus Hook hoping to attack at midnight.

After enduring minor setbacks during their travels, the Americans reached Paulus Hook around 3:00 am. Navigating through a marsh, the Americans reached and swarmed into the garrison, overwhelming British forces. 
Major William Sutherland retreated from the garrison while the Americans finished securing the outpost, capturing 159 enemies in their attack. The battle resulted in two killed, three wounded, and seven captured on the American side, while the British endured 30 killed and injured, and 159 captured. This victory, in addition to the Stony Point victory, convinced General Henry Clinton that the region wouldn't be easily captured, prompting him to plan a campaign for the southern colonies to be carried out the following year.

1 "Night Assault: Battle of Paulus Hook." About Education. Accessed June 06, 2016.

2 "Battle of Paulus Hook | HistoryNet." HistoryNet. 2006. Accessed June 06, 2016.