|Washington Crossing the Delaware is an 1851 oil-on-canvas painting by German American artist Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze. It commemorates General George Washington’s crossing of the Delaware River on the night of December 25–26, 1776, during the American Revolutionary War.
Our Grandfather David Jackson, must have been on one of those boats with George Washington, crossing the Delaware on Christmas night in 1776! Don’t you think he would rather have been at home with his wife and four children warm in front of a fire! Instead…look at this story I found on ancestry.com:
“In 1776 the Revolutionary War began, and ended in 1784.Some time during the first year of the war David Jackson entered the service of the Colonies under General Washington, and was in the battle of Trenton December 25, 1776, in which he lost a hand. The particulars are as follows :Washington and his army crossed the Delaware River in the night, when the river was running full of ice. The attack wasmade upon the British very early in the morning in the midst of a blinding snow storm. Quinton Anderson, James Ewing and David Jackson were comrades. In the midst of the battle, theywere standing together. James Ewing was very much down in spirit, and said, he felt that he would be shot before night. David Jackson and Q. Anderson were talking to him and trying to cheer him up. But, while they were talking, a cannon ball came along, killing James Ewing, and struck David Jackson’s gun and broke it in two pieces, and cut his wrist nearly off. He immediately wrapped his lacerated and bleeding wrist with his pocket handkerchief, picked up the barrel of his gun, and leaving the stock, he walked to an oxcart loaded with wounded men,,mounted it, and with one hand drove it three miles to a place of safety. This circumstance ended his soldier life, but he often held up the stump wrist to his grandsons and said: “Boys,never disgrace the flag of your country! Never!”—from “The Genealogy of the Jackson Family -1890” by Hugh Parks Jackson
As it turns out, There were two Battles of Trenton, and according to my cousin Andrew Kyle Galloway, “There were 2 battles. The one in which David Jackson lost his left hand was not on December 26, 1776, but rather the second battle of Trenton which occurred on January 2, 1777. Historical records show only a few casualties on December 26. There were a few that fell in the snow during the march from exposure to the cold and only a few others whose names are known. But the second battle had many more casualties, the number is disputed but David Jackson’s name and the fact that he lost his hand from a cannonball is listed in the History of Chester County Pennsylvania.” Thank you Andrew for this correction.
Battle of Trenton by Charles McBarron from Wikipedia
“The Battle of Trenton took place on December 26, 1776, during the American Revolutionary War, after General George Washington‘s crossing of the Delaware River north of Trenton, New Jersey. The hazardous crossing in adverse weather made it possible for Washington to lead the main body of the Continental Army against Hessian soldiers garrisoned at Trenton. After a brief battle, nearly the entire Hessian force was captured, with negligible losses to the Americans. The battle significantly boosted the Continental Army’s flagging morale, and inspired reenlistments.