February 21

This Day in History

American Revolution

Feb 21, 1777:

George Weedon is promoted to brigadier general

On this day in 1777, George Weedon is promoted to the rank of brigadier general of the Virginia Regiment of the Continental Army.

Weedon was an innkeeper in Fredericksburg, Virginia, at the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, but had previously served as a lieutenant under George Washington in western Virginia during the French and Indian War. As the revolution began, Weedon was commissioned lieutenant colonel of the Third Virginia Regiment under Hugh Mercer in 1775. On August 13, 1776, he acceded to Mercer's command as colonel of the 3rd Virginia Regiment. In the fall and winter of 1776, Weedon marched with his troops of the Virginia Regiment alongside General George Washington and the Continental Army in campaigns against the British in New York and New Jersey, including the Battles of Trenton, Brandywine and Germantown. He also commanded Pennsylvania and Virginia regiments in Nathanael Greene's division at Valley Forge.

Weedon resigned the post he was given on this day in history one year later when, at Valley Forge, Congress promoted a rival Virginian and French and Indian War veteran, William Woodford, to a position outranking him. Although he never returned to full duty in the Virginia regiment, Weedon continued his service to his country by leading a brigade of Virginia militia during the Battle of Yorktown in October 1781. Woodford was captured during the siege of Charleston and died in captivity in 1780. Weedon lived to see the new nation established; he died in 1793.

Weedon's orderly book--his record of orders and battle plans--from Valley Forge remains in the holdings of the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia.

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