Augustus Van Cortlandt, city clerk

During the Revolutionary War, Augustus Van Cortlandt, city clerk, hid the most valuable of the city’s records in the family burial vault northeast of the house, where they remained for the duration. The Cortlandt family were prominent members of society and resided in the Bronx. Augustus father, Frederick, built the Van Cortlandt mansion which housed George Washington in October of 1776 as he pulled his forces back from the lost city of Manhattan. Washington spent a few nights at Van Cortlandt House on his way to fight the hopeless Battle of White Plains. Lafayette and Rochambeau also stayed in the house… Read More

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Col Jeromus Remsen, war hero

Colonel Jeromus Remsen was a Revolutionary War Hero. His family came to America in the seventeenth century and his father, Abraham Remsen, settled at Hempstead Swamp, one of the first battle sites in the Battle of Long Island during the Revolutionary Way. Remsen was also in the French and Indian War and was one of the original settlers of Queens. He joined the Continental Army and kept the British Army from taking cattle as he drove them eastward out of British hands. He was a Colonel of A Regiment of Kings and Queens County Militia in the Battle of Long… Read More

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Elizabeth Burgin, patriot

Elizabeth Burgin was an American patriot during the American Revolutionary War. She brought food for prisoners of war housed on British prison ships in New York Harbor. Burgin rowed up to the prisoner ship and waited for POWs to climb in, then transferred them across NY Harbor. She is said to have supplied drugs for the prisoners to put in soldiers beer to make them sleep. She was credited with helping over 200 prisoners escape the ships in 1778. A high bounty of over 200 pounds was offered for her capture, 20 times what most British soldiers made in a lifetime, but she was never… Read More

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Elizabeth Jackson Sands, mother, wife, farm manager, agent

Elizabeth Jackson Sands, mother, wife, farm manager and agent in an undercover munitions ring run from her Port Washington property, from the Battle of Brooklyn through to her daring contraband shipment run across the Long Island Sound. With the help of her friends, family, military contacts and slaves, she balanced taking care of her family, raising her crops and cows, and running a contraband munitions smuggling ring out of her cellar and backyard for the Continental Army. The Sands family was one of the original three families that settled in and owned what is now Sands Point, N.Y. Elizabeth married… Read More

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