Battlesite Essex Public Forum
Join Connecticut River Museum staff, Dr. Kevin McBride, Director of Research at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum, and Jerry Roberts, Battle Site Historian as they share their latest findings from archaeological surveys of the British Raid sites in Old Saybrook, Old Lyme, and Essex. This project is supported by a grant from the National Park Service’s American Battlefield Protection Program. The project goals are to identify and document historical sites associated with the British Raid on Essex.
On April 7th, 1814, the British sent 136 marines and sailors up the Connecticut River on a clandestine raid to burn the shipping at Pettipauge (now known as Essex). They came armed for resistance but found the town unprepared for the surprise attack. After destroying over two dozen ships and heading back down River, the British encountered musket and cannon fire from local and state militia. Two British were killed and two were wounded from American cannon fire off Ayer’s Point. Despite a significant build-up of men and weaponry on both sides of the River, the British were able to slip passed the re-enforcements using the cloak of darkness. This brief but costly raid was part of a prolonged British blockade of Long Island Sound during the War of 1812.
CRM staff, Dr. McBride and his research team, and Historian Jerry Roberts are excited to share new historical and archaeological insights from their research and field work. Questions from property owners and interested public are encouraged. For more information about this program contact the Connecticut River Museum at (860) 767-8269 x 115.