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.”

Upcoming Events

Regular Trail Stewards Work Day

September 7 @ 8:45 am - 12:30 pm
355 Washington Crossing Pennington Rd
Titusville, NJ United States

The WCPA Trail Stewards make up our most beloved and active team. They meet monthly at the Park’s Nature Center under the enthusiastic direction of Park employee Kevin Kavanaugh, clearing…

Tai Chi by the Delaware

September 7 @ 9:30 am - 10:30 am

Come to Tai Chi with our steadfast volunteers and beloved teachers Lisa and Robert, who lead classes for all levels. Wear comfy clothes, no mat required. Find us on River…

Weekly Living History Programs

September 7 @ 12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
1638 River Road
New Hope, United States

Join us for a series of Free Weekly Living History programs that we will be conducting in the park on Fridays in April – June at the Lower Park, and…

Battlefield Tour September 8, 2024

September 8 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
500 Mercer Street
Princeton, NJ 08540 United States

Spend a Sunday afternoon at the Princeton Battlefield State Park and learn more about the Battle of Princeton, a battle that ended the “ten crucial days” of 1776-1777. Walk in…

Living History Theatre: Border Dispute

September 8 @ 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
400 Pennsbury Memorial Road
Morrisville, PA 19067 United States

The border between Pennsylvania and Maryland was not clearly designated until well into the 1700s. Through William Penn’s proprietorship, he clashed with Maryland proprietor Lord Baltimore over the border. For…

Lecture – Eighteenth Century France and the American Experience

September 8 @ 1:30 pm
1112 River Road
Washington Crossing, PA 18977 United States

This is a hybrid event.  Visitors may attend in-person in the Visitor Center Auditorium or virtually on Zoom.  Registration is required.  Log-in information provided at registration. In recognition of the Marquis…

WCPA Board of Trustees Meeting

September 12 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Weekly Living History Programs

September 13 @ 12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
1638 River Road
New Hope, United States

Join us for a series of Free Weekly Living History programs that we will be conducting in the park on Fridays in April – June at the Lower Park, and…

Tai Chi by the Delaware

September 14 @ 9:30 am - 10:30 am

Come to Tai Chi with our steadfast volunteers and beloved teachers Lisa and Robert, who lead classes for all levels. Wear comfy clothes, no mat required. Find us on River…