Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
King's American Regiment Orderly Book, 1776-1777

Finding aid created by
Philip Heslip, April 2011

Summary Information
Title: King's American Regiment orderly book
Creator: Great Britain. Army
Inclusive dates: 1776-1777
Extent: 1 volume
Abstract:
The King's American Regiment orderly book (308 pages) contains the regiment, brigade, and general headquarters orders kept by an anonymous officer in a New York Loyalist unit from December 1776 to November 12, 1777. Entries contain details on the regiment's organization and staffing, recruitment and provisioning, and on troop movements and military engagements.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu


Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1949. M-744.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Copyright:

Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information:

Cataloging funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the "We the People" project.

Preferred Citation:

King's American Regiment Orderly Book, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


History

The King's American Regiment was formed at Flat Bush, New York, under the command of Colonel Edmund Fanning (1739-1818), on December 11, 1776. The regiment was comprised of Loyalists from New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, and was stationed at Kingsbridge for much of 1777. On October 6, 1777, the regiment participated in attacks at Forts Clinton and Montgomery under General Henry Clinton. In 1778 and 1779, the corps carried out attacks in Rhode Island and Connecticut, and in 1780 they were sent to Charleston, South Carolina, to join the Southern Campaign. They spent the winter of 1781 in Savannah, Georgia, and returned to New York in December 1782, when the British evacuated Charleston. The regiment became part of the 4th American Regiment on March 7, 1781, and disbanded in 1783.


Collection Scope and Content Note

The King's American Regiment orderly book (308 pages) contains the regiment, brigade, and general headquarter orders kept by an anonymous officer in a New York Loyalist unit from December 1776 to November 1777. Entries consist of details on the regiment's organization and staffing, recruitment and provisioning, promotions and appointments, courts martial and discipline, and on troop movements and military engagements. Headquarters and troop locations include camps in Long Island and in the Hudson River Valley: Flatbush, Jamaica, New Paltz, Oyster Bay, Flushing, Jericho, Kingsbridge, New York City, Turtle Bay, Staten Island, and Verplank's Point. General orders describe troop activities and provide member counts of several other regiments in the area, including the 7th, 26th, 35th, 38th, 52nd, 57th, 63rd, 71st, 2nd Battalion of DeLancey's Brigade, Regiment of Waldick, Prince of Wales Royal American Volunteers, General Tryon's Regiment, and Anthony Brown's Brigade, among others.

Below are some notable entries:

  • March 16, 1777: Dismissal of all "negroes, mollatoes, and other Improper persons who have been admitted into these corps…[and to] prevent such Abuses in the future."
  • July 8, 1777: Appointment of Major General Vaughan as commander of the British troops at Kings Bridge and was ordered to Canada
  • July 10, 1777: Command of New York Island assumed by Lieutenant Henry Clinton
  • August 24, 1777: Description of skirmishes and battles at Valentine's Hill, Satauket, and a surprise rebel invasion of Staten Island, which the 52nd Regiment, the Regiment of Waldick, and provincial corps defeated with "great Slaughter"
  • September 6, 1777: The burial of Ensign McNeil of Colonel Campbell's regiment, and a description of the ceremony
  • September 11, 1777: Incident of seven provincial soldiers who "broke into Abraham Purchases's house, last night about 12 oclock, abused the family, stole some fowls, and a Quantity of Potatoes out of his garden"
  • September 21, 1777: Henry Clinton's orders against plundering civilian houses, and "the money arising from the Sale of Said articles, be transmitted to the Mayor of New York, to be applied to the relief of Poor in the Work house of that City."
  • October 4, 1777: Reference to the Battle of Saratoga "remember that our Brother Soldiers Under the Commander in Chief, and Lieut Genl. Burgoyne, are undergoing the severest fatauges, which a little Exertion on our side may Considerably lighten"
Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • American loyalists.
    • Clinton, Henry, 1771-1829.
    • Great Britain. Army--Military life.
    • Great Britain. Army. Provincial Corps. King's American Regiment.
    • Military discipline.
    • New York (State)--History--Revolution, 1775-1783.
    • United States--History--Revolution, 1775-1783--British forces.
    • United States--History--Revolution, 1775-1783--Participation, African American.
    Genre Terms:
    • Orderly books.
    Contents List
    Container / Location Title
    Volume   1  
    King's American Regiment orderly book,  1776-1777 [series]