2nd Virginia NWTA Information
“The World Turned Upside Down”
Primary Impression of 2nd Virginia, NWTA -
Photo thanks to Bruce Shipyor
Secondary Impression of 2nd Virginia, NWTA -
(Last week of October -
Photo thanks to Bruce Shipyor
2nd Virginia Flag (faded from red to orange)
Our original reenactor group interest was in the 2nd Virginia group joining General Anthony Wayne as light infantry storming Stony Point in July 1779. Unfortunately, it has been difficult to find the uniform associated with the Stony Point group. Here is some information which has just come to light:
Continental Infantry: Posey's Battalion, Febiger's Regt, Wayne's Lt. Infantry Brigade 1779
The reeanactor group then sees itself as part of the "new" 2nd Virginia and then as part of Captain Alexander (younger brother of Richard) Parker’s company (Thomas Posey's battalion), from which our primary impression uniform has been researched (Savannah, GA, 1782). Perhaps a convenient way to follow the 2nd Virginia would just be to track Alexander Parker throughout his time in the war. Check here for some timelines (he first joined under his brother Richard Parker*): http://poegen.net/Misc/RevolutionaryWarVirginiaRegiment.htm (use Control F “Alexander Parker”)
According to member J Perkins: "The 1782 uniform represents the last form of the uniform worn by the 2nd Va. We were a small unit by that time, the bulk of the regiment, except for about 100 who escaped capture or who were away on recruiting duty, having been captured at Charleston in 1780. From what I researched, the "new" 2nd Va was a unit made up after the 1780 capture, and was present at Yorktown (1781)*. Our unit was commanded by Capt. Alexander Parker in LTC Thomas Posey’s battalion-
* According to member David Jahntz: The reconstituted 2VA dug redoubts for the French artillery at the Battle of Yorktown. Some members of the captured 2nd Virginia Regiment at Battle of Charleston (which ended on May 12, 1780) joined Gaskin's Virginia Battalion prior to the Yorktown siege. At Yorktown this group was not part of either the 2nd Virginia continental or state regiments. They did, however, dig the trenches and redoubt fortifications for the French artillery south of Cornwallis' Redoubts 9 and 10 in October of 1781.
“The 2d Virginia Regiment, along with elements of the Culpeper Minute Battalion, engaged the British at the battle of Great Bridge (modern day Chesapeake Virginia), which was a decisive victory. Colonel William Woodford, reporting on the 2d Virginia Regiment's Service at the Battle of Great Bridge, wrote in a letter published in Purdie's Virginia Gazette, December 15, 1775: ‘This was a second Bunker's Hill affair, in miniature; with this difference, that we kept our post, and had only one man wounded in the hand.’” https://www.wikiwand.com/en/2nd_Virginia_Regiment Battle of Great Bridge in detail. Supplement to Battle of Great Bridge
Of the 25 Deadliest Battles of the Revolutionary War, the 2d Virginia Regiment fought in five of them: #2 Germantown, #3 Brandywine, #11 Monmouth, #12 Waxhaws and #15 Charleston. If one counts the "reconstituted" 2d Virginia Regiment of 1781 which fought with Greene, you can add #4 Eutaw Springs and #13 Guilford Courthouse.
Here is a list of battles in which the 2nd Virginia (or a * detachment, formal or not) was engaged: Great Bridge (9 Dec 75), Cooch’s Bridge* (3 Sep 77), Brandywine (11 Sep 77), Germantown (4 Oct 77), [Valley Forge, Winter 77-
Battle of Germantown — Unknown reporter, Virginia Gazette, October 17, 1777
“The heroism and gallantry of the second Virginia regiment I cannot help particularly mentioning; they would do honour to any country in the world. It is universally believed they behaved the best of any troops in the field.”
* Richard Parker (1751 – 8 May 1780) was an American colonel who fought in the American Revolutionary War. Son of prominent Virginia jurist Richard Parker, Captain Richard Parker of the 3rd Company, 2nd Virginia Regiment raised his company from the Westmoreland District (primary county of Westmoreland; with Montross as county seat ). Parker received an officer's commission in a Virginia regiment [2nd Virginia] early in the conflict. He probably was present at Great Bridge and Norfolk. Promoted to major [in the 6th Virginia Regt], he fought at Trenton in December 1776 and commanded the regiment at Second Trenton and Princeton in January 1777. At Brandywine in September 1777 he led a [2nd Virginia] detachment of light infantry in delaying the British. The next month he fought at Germantown. Promoted to colonel [of 1st Virginia Regt] at Valley Forge, he led [first the 1st, 5th, 9th VA and then, right before the battle] a picked detachment at Monmouth in June 1778. In May 1779, George Washington ordered him back to Virginia to recruit a new regiment. After being sent south with a new unit of reinforcements [1st VA Detachment] for Charleston, South Carolina in late 1779, he died of wounds received at the Siege of Charleston in 1780.
Memoir of Thomas Posey (electronic p 359, especially p 382 onward)
Battle of Stony Point: "Barnes & Noble Illustrated Guide to Sites of the American Revolution"
"'Give the order, Sir, and I will lay siege to hell!' When 'Mad Anthony' Wayne spoke these words to
George Washington in the summer of 1779, he wasn't boasting. Given Wayne's reputation for daring and
bravery, he likely would have marched into hell if Washington had ordered it. Luckily for Wayne,
the General is said to have replied, 'Take Stony Point first.'"
"...Four regiments were assigned to Wayne. The men, numbering a little more than 1300, were the cream
of the Continental crop, hardy veterans, many of whom had either been drilled in bayonet fighting by
Baron von Steuben or had drilled using his infantry manual."
"...Nathanael Greene, writing that same month[July], recognized the propaganda value of the victory.
'The attack was...conducted with great spirit and enterprise, the troops marching up in the face of an
exceeding heavy fire with cannon and musketry, without discharging a gun. This is thought to be
the perfection of discipline and will for ever immortalize Gen. Wayne, as it would do honor to the
first general in Europe.'"
2VA Leather Cap at Cantigny 2017
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