WASHINGTON-ROCHAMBEAU (W3R) HISTORICAL PROGRAM & ARTIST'S RECEPTION TO BE HELD AT GREENBURGH TOWN HALL ON FRIDAY, AUGUST 18
August 14, 1781 was an important date in the Philipsburg Encampment and, therefore, in Greenburgh history, since it marked the arrival of a message from Admiral de Grasse stating that for a certain amount of time he could have the French fleet in the Chesapeake Bay area to support any action there against the British. It forced the decision for Washington and Rochambeau to head south and within four days, thousands of their troops were on the march.
On exhibit at the Madeleine Gutman Gallery at Town Hall from July 18 thru August 31 are 18 full-color illustrations by David R. Wagner of Scotland, Conn. The exhibit, "French Involvement in the American Revolutionary War" is a part of Greenburgh’s celebration of the 225th anniversary of Generals Washington and Rochambeau’s collaboration to secure American Independence. Mr. Wagner began work on a series of sixty illustrations four years ago, and anticipates a total of 80 paintings before completing the series. After August 31st, the paintings will leave Westchester County to be displayed at other 225th anniversary celebrations southward along the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route. Their final destination will be Yorktown, Virginia for the major celebration scheduled for October 19th to commemorate the victory over the British.
The exhibit is open to the public, free of charge, from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. weekdays and prior to all Town Board, Zoning, and Planning Commission meetings. For more information, contact Sarah Bracey White (914) 682-1574.
In addition, a program has been scheduled for Friday, August 18 at Greenburgh Town Hall to celebrate the anniversary of the Philipsburg Encampment, which was the prelude to the march to victory at Yorktown by Washington and Rochambeau. A reception to meet Mr. Wagner, will begin at 6:30 p.m., followed by a lecture on his Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route (W3R) paintings. A panel discussion will then take place concerning Washington and Rochambeau, the Philipsburg Encampment and some of the controversies that have continued over the years. Participants will include Col. Serge G. Gabriel, AUS (Ret.), of the State of Connecticut Advisory Commission on American and Francophone Cultural Affairs and Robert J. Stackpole, President of the New York Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution.
The America's March to Yorktown re-enactors will again be camping at the Odell House property on August 17 and 18, and may be involved in the program. Their march to Yorktown, Va. will resume the next day when they follow the route of the French army in 1781, leaving Greenburgh and retracing their steps through White Plains to head towards northern Westchester before crossing the Hudson at King's Ferry (Verplanck).
This exhibit is also one in a series of activities planned in the Greenburgh area through October of this year to commemorate the local historical events of 1781 that involved the combined Continental and French armies under Washington and Rochambeau in their efforts to defeat the British. In the middle of June, Count de Rochambeau, commanding general of the French expeditionary force, began the march that would lead his troops down from Rhode Island to join with General Washington's army at a site in Westchester County. That rendezvous occurred on July 6th in the hills of Greenburgh and present-day Ardsley, between White Plains and Dobbs' Ferry, lasted six weeks, and became known as the Philipsburg Encampment.
For more information on this program and additional W3R activities scheduled in the Greenburgh area, please contact Frank Jazzo, Greenburgh Town Historian & W3R Committee at (914) 993-1641 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.