After the death of Thomas Knowlton, Knowlton’s Rangers nearly disbanded. Ultimately, though, it was decided they should remain to help secure the outposts of the Americans’ ever waning position on Manhattan.
Though Washington had moved most of his army north, the Rangers had been left at Harlem Heights in the case that Howe would try to attack Fort Washington, coming up from New York City to the south.
According to one of Knowlton’s Rangers, Oliver Burnham, “We remained until the sixteenth of November in this situation (‘near Harlem’) when we were warmly engaged on all sides. We were about two miles below the fort and well sustained the attack until the enemy made good their landing across Harlem River, when we had hard fighting to reach the fort.”
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