What are the “Ten Crucial Days?”     

In December 1776, a mere six months after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, General George Washington's fledgling American Army and the cause of liberty were on the verge of being extinguished. A disastrous New York campaign that fall had resulted in the loss of more than half of Washington’s troops, as well as the confidence of Congress and his fellow citizens. Retreating through “the Jerseys” with the remnants of his ragtag Continentals, Washington and his soldiers sought refuge on the west bank of the Delaware River, having narrowly escaped King George III's British troops and their Hessian auxiliaries. Doubling as peace commissioners, British General William Howe and his brother, Royal Navy Admiral Sir Richard Howe, reasoned that further bloodshed was unnecessary. They assumed that the rebellious American soldiers—many of whose enlistments were scheduled to expire at year's end—would no longer be able to offer any significant resistance. Settling into winter quarters, General Howe ordered his regiments to set up a string of cantonments posted through the Jerseys.  

George Washington saw something very different... Taking stock of his army’s desperate situation, the rebel commander-in-chief would launch his forces into a series of victorious engagements, of which British historian Sir George Otto Trevelyan later wrote, “It may be doubted whether so small a number of men ever employed so short a space of time with greater and more lasting effects upon the history of the world.” That space of time—December 25, 1776 to January 3, 1777—encompassed “Ten Crucial Days” that changed the course of history.

Do something revolutionary! Experience the “Ten Crucial Days.”

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Upcoming Events

Free history videos at the Visitors Center

February 11 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Benedict Arnold: Triumph and Treason.

Trace Your African Roots – Information Session

February 11 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

In-person in the Trent House Visitor Center Join the Greater Trenton branch of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) and the Trent House Association…

Trail Stewards Work Day

February 18 @ 8:45 am - 12:30 pm

Meet at the Nature Center for the Washington Crossing State Park Trail Stewards Work Day! Please join us and volunteer to improve the park's trails. Please dress in layers with…


February 18 @ 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

The Johnson Ferry House at Washington Crossing State Park — the only building still standing that existed at the time of the 1776 Crossing — cordially invites all to a…

Free history videos at the Visitors Center

February 18 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

George Washington: The Unknown Years.

George Washington’s Birthday Party

February 19 @ 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
1112 River Road
Washington Crossing, PA 18977 United States

Come celebrate George Washington’s 291st birthday on Sunday, Feb. 19 from 11 AM to 2 PM at Washington Crossing Historic Park (PA)! During the day, various children’s activities will be…

Cross Country Ski and & Snowshoe Clinic

February 19 @ 1:00 pm - 3:30 pm

This workshop is a 90-minute lecture and demonstration from 1:00pm-2:30pm inside the Nature Center. If snow-covered, an additional 1+ hour outdoor ski/snowshoe lesson will be offered. If not, trail maps…

February Book Club: Occupied America: British Military Rule and the Experience of Revolution

February 21 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
PA United States

In partnership with the Friends of Washington Crossing Park the next meeting of the Washington Crossing Historic Park Book Club is set for Tuesday, February 21, 2023 at 5:30 PM.…

Free history videos at the Visitors Center

February 25 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Benjamin Franklin: Citizen of the World.