Capture British SpyMaster John Andre With Historical Society
On Tuesday, February 19, 2013 the Washington Township Historical Society will host a short program on “The Day that Saved the Revolution….the Capture of British ‘SpyMaster’ Major John Andre” at the WTHS Museum, 6 Fairview Avenue, Long Valley, NJ.
The presentation, by Schooleys Mountain resident and WTHS member, Forrest “Woody” Burgener, will focus on the events leading up to the fateful day in Westchester County, N.Y., and the ties between Maj. Arnold and American Hero and General, Benedict Arnold and his teenage bride Margaret “Peggy” Shippen. Did “Peggy” bring Arnold and Andre together? Was she the “Ring Master” of the brazen attempt in 1780 to not only turn West Point over to the British but also Capture General George Washington at the same time?
Mr. Burgener was born and raised on the Tappan Zee section of the Hudson River and has spent many years studying the “treacherous triumvirate” of Arnold, Andre and “Peggy”. Woody lived in Piermont, N.Y., directly across the Hudson from the spot that Andre was captured, and in Tappan, N.Y. where Andre was held prisoner, tried by Court Martial and, shortly thereafter, went to the gallows for his crime.
After earning degrees in Economics, English and history from New York University Burgener was a principal “Historical Restoration” contractor in the late 1980s for the restoration of the Shippen Manor in Oxford, N.J. to its original 1752 condition.
As a member of the “Company of Military Historians” (West Point Chapter) he recently gave a presentation at West Point on “Benedict Arnold and His March to Quebec” and, more recently gave a talk on Arnold, Andre and Shippen to the DAR chapter in Hackettstown.
He is the “Adjutant” of Washington Township’s American Veterans Association Post “1776” and part of the “Living History” flying squad of Veterans who visit schools throughout Morris, Warren and Sussex counties to talk about American history to students from fifth grade to senior high school.
The program will begin after a short meeting of the general membership at 7:30 PM. Refreshments will be served. The program is free but donations to the WTHS are always greatly appreciated.