September 10, 1777 (actually 2020)
Several brave soldiers occupied Kennett Square on Thursday and informed the public of Parliament’s plan to end the war by Christmas. We are prepared to engage Mr. Washington and his band of merry men who have ensconced themselves on the other side of Brandywine Creek.
Randell Spackman reassured everyone the King has sent a “fully armed battalion to remind them of his love.”
We captured a spy in our midst… Seems I’ve seen this spy before.
His Majesty’s finest enjoyed the adoration of the King’s most loyal subjects.
All this and finally, I was ordered by General Howe, who could not be present to read an address to the people of Kennett Square, reassuring them that we have a plan for their protection:
Speech for Kennett Square Occupation Day
“Ladies and Gentlemen, I know you were expecting General Howe but he is currently attending to urgent matters and cannot be here to speak to you right now. He is, however, personally concerned about your well-being and has ordered me to address you, King George’s loyal subjects, answer those questions we can today, and take any petitions back for him to address after he as concluded certain urgent military matters.
First of all, General Howe wishes to assure you that you are safe. We have taken all necessary precautions to assure that the rebel army will not cross the Brandywine River. General Knyphausen and our allies from Hesse-Kassel have secured the Chadds Ford and we have sent scouts to reconnoiter the other potential crossings. We have an overwhelming force of His Majesty’s best soldiers and while Mister Washington has a large army, we have a superior one. When we engage them, the results will be very similar to what happened last year in Brooklyn only this time we are not allowing him to escape.
General Howe also understands that many of you have been extremely generous and understanding of the needs of His Majesty’s Armies. The hospitality and forbearance you have shown will be rewarded once this war is brought to an end and we have confiscated the assets and estates of these rebels. Our soldiers have been at sea for months and we have since landing have marched in haste to meet our enemy here at Brandywine Creek before they could pillage and steal from you. Your generosity to the Crown Forces and our Hessian allies demonstrates your unwavering loyalty to the Crown. (God Save the King!)
General Howe also wants you to remember that despite the ragtag nature of our adversary, this is a war and battles are often won or lost upon the information shared wittingly and unwittingly. We appreciate the assistance many of you have given in helping our scouts understand the terrain and position of Mister Washington’s forces. We also want to caution you that there are spies among us. Be careful of your associations lest you be pulled into intrigue and treason.
Finally, I have been allowed to tell you that we intend to end this war DEFINATIVELY within the next few weeks. Lord Germain has launched a bold and brilliant strategy to crush this rebellion and our army being here is the final stroke in that assault. As we speak, General Burgoyne is securing the Hudson Valley, having marched a sizable army from Quebec and soon we will have isolated the Massachusetts colonies. General St. Leger’s Army has secured the Mohawk Valley and Fort Stanwix and soon the Continental Congress will be denied their Indian allies. Our army will soon capture Philadelphia and we will apprehend the treasonous radicals in the so called “Continental Congress.”
We know there may be some of you out there who are sympathetic to the rebellion but unless you have engaged in ACTS of treason, have aided the enemy, or interfere with our armies, General Howe assures you that you will remain safe. General Howe’s aim is to restore order and end the armed insurrection not to deny you your rights as Englishmen to seek redress from the King and Parliament, provided you seek that redress through legal and peaceful means. We did not start this war; we only seek to end it. Tomorrow, we plan to do just that.
I will now answer any questions I can.”
“the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.”— from the poem To a Mouse, written by the Scottish poet Robert Burns in 1786
General Howe took the field but the other two legs of this strategy were foiled by that damnable Arnold…