Horatio Gates – September 19, 1777

Experience the American dream with today’s Patriots of the Past interview. I’m your host, John Gillespie.

It’s September 19, 1777. I’m in New York with General Gates at the Battle of Saratoga.

JG: “General Gates, what has been British General Burgoyne’s strategy in this battle?”

HG: “Mr. Gillespie, he’s invading from Canada. He’s hoping to cut the colonies in two. We’re going to cut down trees to block his path, harass him along the way, disrupt his supply line, and surround him.”

Surround the British we did as General Gates and the American army won a spectacular victory on October 17, 1777, convincing France to become our ally.

In Glens Falls, New York, the Battle of Saratoga historical marker reads, “One of the most decisive battles in world history ended with the surrender near here of the British army invading from Canada under General ‘Gentleman Johnny’ Burgoyne in 1777. The defeat ended a summer-long campaign by over 7,000 British, Hessian mercenaries, and Indians to capture Albany and then split the colonies in a drive south.

“Americans under Major General Philip Schuyler slowed the advance and his successor, Major General Horatio Gates, stopped it in battles fought September 19 and October 7 in the area now within Saratoga National Historical Park. News of the surrender treaty, signed October 17, raised American morale and led to the Franco-American Alliance which brought badly needed French troops to the cause.”

John and Jan Gillespie are the founders of the Rawhide Boys’ Ranch; they have fostered 351 teenagers and wrote the book Our 351 Sons; they have also assisted numerous churches in developing youth programs and expanding their total church ministries. After running for U.S. Senate, John founded 1776 American Dream, which exists to demonstrate the vision of our founding fathers and help our generation of youth passionately embrace those values.

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