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Plan of Fort Montgomery, Drawn by Colonel Palmer, 1776

Map. Plan of Fort Montgomery Drawn by Colonel Palmer

Map. Plan of Fort Montgomery Drawn by Colonel Palmer

Other, USMA_Maps_Montgomery
 
Document Description
Plan of Fort Montgomery, drawn by Colonel Palmer, 1776.
 
Questions
What elements of the map, both natural and manmade, would have provided defense for the Continental Army?
 
After breaking the map into quadrants, what elements of geography do you see? 
How has the author chosen to show these elements (artistically, with text, etc.)?
 
What does the text on this map teach you about the purpose of the map?
 
How does the geography influence the positioning of the fort? 
 
What are the benefits and drawbacks of the positioning of the fort and the elements within it?
 
What can you learn about the American Revolution/ Continental Army based on this document?
 
 
Historical Challenges
Create a map of all of the military forts from the American Revolution located in New York State.  Consider which of these are on waterways and which are not.  How might this influence the events that occurred at each fort?  
What benefits did the geography of the land provide the American forces?  What drawbacks were there?
 
 
Interdisciplinary Connections
English Language Arts: Imagine that you are a British soldier seeing Fort Montgomery for the first time in 1777.  Write a description of the fort, its defenses and your experiences fighting there.  Be sure to explain the obstacles that the geography of the land presented.
 
 

Historical Context
As the impending war drew closer, the newly independent states needed to raise and supply an army capable of defeating a major world power: Great Britain. Originally defended by the local militia, the former colonies established the Continental Army in April of 1775. George Washington was named the Commander-in-Chief and the leaders set out to build an army that could defeat England.
 
Despite major obstacles, the former colonies were able to build an army. The major advantage for the Americans came from their knowledge of geographical features within the colonies. Geography played a major role in many of the battles of the American Revolution.
 
Built on the Hudson River, Fort Montgomery and Fort Clinton were built to control movement on the river and limit British advancement up the river. On October 6, 1777, British, Loyalist and Hessian forces attacked both forts.  Though the Americans lost the battles, they fought bravely until they were forced out of the forts. 
 
 
Essential Question
How did geographical features affect military strategy during the Revolutionary War?
 
Check for Understanding
Students should answer the following question with evidence from the document.
 
How does this map show the influence of geography on military strategy?