A Map of the Country round Philadelphia Including Part of New Jersey and New York, 1776


This map of eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and the area around New York City originally was published in The Gentleman’s Magazine of September 1776. The American colonies had declared their independence two months earlier and were in revolt against the British crown, so the conflict in North America was of keen interest to readers of this popular London monthly. An accompanying article explained: “It [the map] comprehends that part of America which is now the chief object of the British arms. Should New-York be suddenly reduced, it is more than probable that Philadelphia will be next attacked, as the distance from one city to the other is little more than four days march, or fourscore miles, the road good; and if the main army under Gen. Washington is defeated, little or no opposition is to be dreaded. Indeed, a defeat will, in all probability, put an end to the opposition; for, as the Provincial army is now situated, should they be vanquished, few of them can escape.” The British occupied New York and, as the article predicted, moved toward Philadelphia. But Washington was able to retreat from New York and win victories at Trenton on December 26, 1776, and at Princeton on January 3, 1777, keeping his army intact and fighting for another six years until independence was secured.

Last updated: April 13, 2012