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South Bound Brook, New Jersey Revolutionary War Sites
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Revolutionary War New Jersey
QUEEN'S BRIDGE / Spanning the Raritan River
Battle Of Bound Brook
South Bound Brook New Jersey

South Bound Brook Historic Sites
South Bound Brook NJ

Battle of Bound Brook - South Battlefield Markers
Queen's Bridge / Spanning the Raritan River
South Main St.
Map / Directions to the Battle of Bound Brook site

Map / Directions to all South Bound Brook Revolutionary War Sites

The Battle of Bound Brook took place on April 13, 1777. It consisted of four lines of attack by British and Hessian forces on the American garrison at Bound Brook. The main attacking force came over Queen's Bridge, which was then a wood frame bridge built in 1761.

At the South Bound Brook side of the bridge, there are several plaques about the history of the bridge. The Battle of Bound Brook plaque gives details about the events that occurred here at the battle's South Battlefield, the site of the main British attack: [1] (For details about the overall Battle, see the Bound Brook page).

"At dawn on April 13, 1777 Hessian Captain Ewald’s assault over the stone bridge across the Bound Brook was pinned down by 'murderous fire' from American soldiers stationed in the Half Moon Battery.

"Advancing North along present day Easton Avenue a column of approximately 1,000 troop and artillery, under command of Hessian Colonel Donop, pushed aside American outposts and arrived at their point 15 minutes after Ewald's attack had faltered.

"Advancing over The Queen’s Bridge, Donop’s troops engaged the Americans forcing them to withdraw from the battery. With the American withdrawal, Donop’s, Ewald's’ and British General Grant's troops advanced and fought through the streets of Bound Brook.

"After the battle, the combined British / Hessian army of approximately 4,000 men returned to their bases around New Brunswick via River Road and this route, looting many homestead along the way."

Queen's Bridge has gone through several changes and rebuildings in the two and a half centuries since it was first built. It went from a wood frame bridge to a covered wooden bridge to a steel pipe truss bridge in 1875. The current Queen's Bridge was constructed in 1984. However its stone piers date to at least 1875. [2]

Revolutionary War New Jersey
Headquarters of General von Steuben, March - June 1779
South Bound Brook in the Revolutionary War
South Bound Brook, New Jersey

The Abraham Staats House
17 Von Steuben Ln.
Map / Directions to the Abraham Staats House
Map / Directions to all South Bound Brook Revolutionary War Sites

For information about tours and upcoming events, see the Staats House website.

The oldest portions of this house, located in what is now the center section (shown above right), were built circa 1740. The property was acquired by Abraham Staats in 1770. The house was home to Abraham, his wife Margaret and their children throughout the Revolutionary War era. [3]

Abraham Staats was an active supporter of the cause of Independence, which was recognized by the British. On November 30, 1776, British General William Howe issued a proclamation which offered "full and free pardon of all treasons and misprisions of treasons" to those who would swear an oath to "remain in a peaceable obedience to his Majesty, and will not take up arms, nor encourage others to take up arms, in opposition to his authority." Staats was one of four New Jersey men specifically excluded from this offer and named as "arch-traitors." One of the others was Hendrick Fisher, whose house is located a half mile south from here in Franklin Township. [4]

Abraham and Margaret continued to live in this house for the rest of their lives, and they both lived for almost four decades after the Revolutionary War ended. Abraham Staats died May 4, 1821. Margaret died the following year on April 22, 1822. They were both originally buried on the property but were later reinterred to the Bound Brook Cemetery in Bound Brook. [5]

Second Middlebrook Encampment
Headquarters of General von Steuben

From March to June 1779, during the latter part of the second Middlebrook Encampment, Abraham and Margaret were host to General von Steuben, the inspector general of the Continental army. Von Steuben entertained dignitaries and officers at the house during his stay here, including General George Washington.

Von Steuben's specialty was in the training and drilling of troops. During his stay at the Staats House, he was given the task of training a select group of troops for a ceremonial review in honor of the visiting French diplomat Conrad Alexandre Gérard, and Spanish envoy Don Juan de Miralles. The review occurred on May 2, consisting of eight regiments of infantry and sixteen cannons. George Washington was also in attendance, as well as other officers and dignitaries. Following the review, the French minister and other guests came to the Staats House, where a reception was held for them in a tent erected on the property for the occasion. [6]

The occasion was apparently a great success. The following day, General Washington wrote that he was "happy to inform the Army at the request of [French diplomat Gérard] that the Military Exhibitions to which he was witness as well as the cordial testimonies of respect paid him, have afforded him the highest satisfaction and acquired his warmest approbation. The General cannot but add his Congratulations upon this occasion. " [7]

The Abraham Staats house is one of five surviving Somerset County houses which were used as headquarters by American Generals during the time of the second Middlebrook Encampment. The other four are:
      •  Wallace House in Somerville - Headquarters of General George Washington
      •  Jacobus Vanderveer House in Bedminster - Headquarters of General Henry Knox
      •  Van Horne house in Bridgewater - Headquarters of General William Alexander (Lord Stirling)
      •  Van Veghten house in Bridgewater - Headquarters of Quartermaster General Nathanael Greene

The Heritage Trail Association of Somerset County runs a Five Generals Bus Tour in February, which visits all five of these houses. For more information about this and their other events, see their website

Revolutionary War New Jersey

Source Notes:

1. ^ Text of the Battle of Bound Brook plaque at this site.

2. ^  Queen's Bridge plaque at this site

3.  ^ For more information about the history of the house, see:

History page of the Staats House website

• National Register of Historic Places Registration Form for the Abraham Staats House
Available as a PDF on the National Park Service /National Register of Historic Places website here.
▸This form goes into great detail about the architectural and construction history of the house, for those who are interested in this information.

4. ^ The full text of Howe's November 30, 1776 proclamation is reprinted in:
The Annual Register, or a View of the History, Politics, and Literature, For the Year 1777. The Fifth Edition (London: J. Seeley of Buckingham, and J. Wright, of St. John's Square, 1805) pages 295-296
Available to be read at Google Books here
▸ While the text of the proclamation does not mention the exclusion of the "arch-traitors," the Fisher House page of The Ukrainian Orthodox Church website, and A. Van Doren Honeyman's "Hendrick Fisher - The Real German-American" mention Fisher's exclusion from the offer of pardon.
• Frank P. Snell, History of Hunterdon and Somerset Counties, New Jersey (Philadelphia: Everts & Peck, 1881) page 649, states:
"Peter Harpending, Tobias Van Norden, Hendrick Fisher, and Abraham Staats were excepted as 'arch-traitors' when general amnesty was offered by the British in 1776."          Available to be read at Google Books here

5. ^ Genealogies of New Jersey Families, Volume I (Genealogical Publishing Company, 1996) page 822

• I spoke with Dennis Costain, the Office Manager of Bound Brook Cemetery, on March 25, April 13, and April 24, 2015, and he verified this information from the cemetery records.
I would like to thank Dennis for taking the time to speak with me.

6 ^ Carl E. Prince, Middlebrook - The American Eagle's Nest (Somerville, NJ; Somerset Press, 1958) page 47-49

7. ^ George Washington - General Orders / Head Quarters, Middle Brook, Monday, May 3, 1779, reprinted in:
George Washington; John C. Fitzpatrick, Editor, The Writings of George Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources, 1745-1799, Volume 14 (Washington D.C.; Government Printing Office, 1936) Page 475
Available to be read at Google Books here