Posted on

Bergen County’s history truly is Revolutionary! This time war comes to Ho-Ho-Kus

River Edge NJ, right from the Bergen County Historical Society:

April 16th, 1780. Ho-Ho-Kus would never be the same…

On Saturday the 15th inst. a detachment of cavalry, consisting of two Captains, six Subalterns, and about one hundred and twenty horse, were ordered from Staten-Island on an excursion in the Jersies. They embarked by four o’clock in the afternoon, and the whole were at Bird’s-Point by eight o’clock in the evening, when Capt. Diemar pursued his march to Dumeres’s, where he arrived without opposition by twelve o’clock that night, joining Major Du Buys, who with three hundred foot had crossed the North-River at Fort Lee. The troops marched on as quick as the badness of the roads would permit, arrived at New Bridge about half past two, where one shot was fired by the enemy; one continental officer and three militia were taken, the former by the Hessians, and the latter by Lieut. Col. Buskirk, who served as a volunteer on the expedition. Major Du Buys left one Captain and fifty foot at the Bridge, to secure the return of his Majesty’s troops on that road, the remainder marched on towards Paramus, but the day appearing, and the rebels having one hundred and fifty continentals at the town, and a steep hill at a mile distance in their rear, the surprize could not be effected, on account of the fatiguing march which the foot underwent, it was therefore judged necessary that the cavalry should lead the van, when they pushed on, and finding a rebel picket of about thirty foot, commanded by an officer, on the right hand side of Paramus, in a field, surrounded with a fence, who fired several shot without effect, and then took to their heels, when Captain Deimar intercepted them: Fourteen were killed on the spot, and the officer retired with the remainder to a house, where he and several more were killed and the rest taken in arms. Some deserters came to join the party, and the commanding officer of the cavalry getting intelligence that the rebels had taken possession of a stone-house, he ordered them to dismount, surround, and storm it, which they did sword in hand. The house where they entered was fired at, but advancing slowly on the floor, and crying out that no quarters would be given, unless they surrendered instantly, which they did; and Major Boyl, of the 3rd Pennsylvania regiment, three subalterns, and about 6 privates were taken at the house. The rebel major being wounded through the breast, and unable to be transported, Captain Diemar left him upon parole. The loss of his Majesty’s troops were some men wounded before the house, Capt. Diemar’s horse was shot through the body; after they had surrendered a shot was fired from the top of the house, which dangerously wounded one of the Queen’s Rangers; the house was then set on fire, and had it not been for the humanity of Captain Diemar all the prisoners would have been put to death.
The cavalry took one Major, one Capt. three Subalterns, and fifty-two privates, and being rejoined by Major DuBuy at Paramus, the rebels having collected some hundred militia on the hill near the town, it was not thought expedient to attack them: Having compleatly succeeded in the enterprize, and two officers and about forty rebels killed, the whole detachment returned in as regular an order as any military manoeuvre can admit. The rebels pursued the King’s troops towards the English Neighbourhood, but lost many men by the spirited behaviour of the Hessians and the detachment of Colonel Robinson’s corps. Too much praise cannot be given to the officers and men of the detachment of cavalry, who behaved with great gallantry. They returned the 16th by eight o’clock in the evening, to their quarters at Staten-Island, without a single man or horse being taken by the enemy, after a continued march of more than eighty miles without having their horses fed.
Such is the exertion of British soldiers who fight in a just cause and for the rights of the best of Sovereigns, against the dishonourable banditti who formerly were too happy and fell into temptation.
Source: The Royal American Gazette (New York,) April 20, 1780.

2 thoughts on “Bergen County’s history truly is Revolutionary! This time war comes to Ho-Ho-Kus

  1. Interesting info but not in italics, please. It’s impossible to read.

  2. Boldface is also hard to read but this is better than the italics. Thank you, PJ.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.