Linkedin Long-Form Post #1
The Year 1778
The cannons roar from shore to shore,
The small arms make a rattle;
Since war’s begun, I’m sure no man
E’er saw so strange a battle
Mary Carr Phillips
Each morning, Mary Carr joined the throngs of onlookers, enjoying the spectacle of British artillery taking aim at wooden kegs that floated down the Delaware River. Word had quickly spread that the kegs were full of gunpowder, and would sink any vessel they encountered. Loyalists in the crowd cheered each time a keg exploded, and booed whenever a shell aimlessly splashed.
Food and other supplies were finally arriving, for the British now controlled the river south of Philadelphia. Mary took comfort whenever she heard the loyalists cursing the name of Continental Naval Captain John Barry, who seemed to be the instigator causing them all their discomfort. There was little doubt in her mind that the Irishman from Wexford was responsible for the commotion created by the floating bombs. Although not causing undue damage, the nightly explosions by the kegs hitting obstacles ruined the sleep of all Philadelphians, and the nerves of the legions of redcoats who patrolled the city’s narrow streets.
Linkedin Long-Form Post #2
Excerpt from his book, Irish in the American Revolution
By James Francis Smith
Author of the “Irish-American Story”
History repeats itself. Historians repeat each other.
Phillip Guedallla 1920
The Year 1776
By now, the historians among us should know that at Captain John Barry’s instigation, two Irishmen, Paddy Colvin, The Ferryman of Trenton from County Cavan and Liam McConkney, ferry owner from County Tipperary, rescued Washington’s army from the oncoming Lord Cornwallis.
Historians tell us that Lord Howe could have and should have trapped Washington on the Jersey side of the Delaware River, which would have ended the war in weeks—if not days. Instead by following typical European tradition, he suspended operations until spring. But was tradition his only reason?
Here’s what one English wit had to say:
Sir William, he, snug as a flea
Lay all this time a-snoring
Nor dreamed of harm,
As he lay warm
In bed with Mrs. Loring.
Mrs. Loring was the spouse of one of Howe’s subordinates. Therefore, it seems we have her to thank, or Washington’s victory at Trenton would never have come to pass.