The Battle of Chestnut Neck was a battle fought in New Jersey during the American Revolutionary War.
At the beginning of the Revolutionary War, Chestnut Neck was a busy thriving trade centre around the Little Egg Harbor River. Local vessels travelled to New York and elsewhere, carrying mail and trading goods and merchandise. With the coming of the War, the same harbour facilities which made it a seaport, made it a home base for American Privateers who would attack and seize British ships and take their captured prizes into Chestnut Neck. The captured vessels and their cargos were sold, and the captured vessels were often used as Privateers.
With the British holding Philadelphia and New York City during the winter of 1777–78, General George Washington at Valley Forge was cut off from his sources of supplies. Supplies were then brought into Little Egg Harbor, unloaded at Chestnut Neck, taken up the river on flat boats to the Forks, carted across the state to Burlington, and on to Valley Forge. Many cargoes intended for Sir Henry Clinton in New York were seized by privateers and reached General Washington at Valley Forge.
Sir Henry Clinton became so exasperated by this constant loss of his ships, that he decided to "clean out that nest of Rebel Pirates." Accordingly, on September 30, 1778, a fleet of nine British ships and transports, under command of Captain Henry Collins, with 300 British Regulars and 100 New Jersey Loyalists, under Captain Patrick Ferguson, sailed from New York, bound for Chestnut Neck.
Governor William Livingston learned of their sailing, and sent riders to warn the people. General Washington dispatched Count Kazimierz Pułaski and his Legion to assist the Patriots, though they did not arrive until the day following the battle.
The British fleet, because of bad weather, did not arrive off Little Egg Harbor until late in the afternoon of October 5, 1778, after which the weather prevented their getting over the bar. Knowing the peopl...