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Revolutionary War Continental Soldier - Delaware Regiment by Sideshow

By John Medeiros

From the box text by Geoff Giglierano: Although it was one of the smaller states, Delaware provided soldiers who served with distinction throughout the course of the American Revolution. The Delaware Regiment was borne after the Continental Congress directed in 1775 that a body of troops should be raised in the lower three counties of Pennsylvania, an area that shortly afterwards became the new state of Delaware.

In early 1776, this regiment was organized under the command of Colonel John Haslet. By April, it was nearly at full strength: about 750 officers and enlisted men. Though weapons were initially in short supply, the unit's uniforms were described as being among the best in the American Army. The Delaware men wore blue coats with red facings, and pewter buttons marked "D.R.". Initially, the men wore a light infantry style leather cap, but later this unique headgear was replaced by cocked hats. That summer, the unit was fully equipped with muskets and bayonets, and as an element of Stirling's brigade, was sent to New York City.

During the battle of Long Island in August 1776, Haslet's men helped save the American army as they fought alongside the Maryland Regiment in a desperate action on Gowanus Creek. Though both units suffered heavy losses, their discipline and determination allowed the larger part of Washington's forces to avoid destruction in that disastrous battle. Several nights later, when the rebel army slipped away from the British, the survivors of the Maryland and Delaware Regiments formed the rear guard, covering the withdrawal.

Over subsequent months, the Delaware regiment-like the rest of Washington's army-was gradually worn down in a series of actions, including an attack on Staten Island and the battle of White Plains. By December of 1776, only 100 men remained on the unit's rolls. Members of this little band were among the Americans who took part in the successful surprise attack on the Hessians of Trenton, giving Washington a much-needed victory. An even smaller group of Delaware men took part in the battle of Princeton, during which Col. Haslet was killed. Meanwhile new men and officers were recruited for the regiment, which fought at Brandywine and Germantown. In that battle, the Delaware Regiment made an attack that saw initial success, but low on ammunition and caught in a difficult position, they took serious casualties, including their new colonel, who was badly wounded and had to be invalided home.

After fighting the battle of Monmouth, the Delaware Regiment was sent to the southern theatre. By early 1780, the Delaware contingent had again dwindled to only about 300 men. At Camden, 48 of the Delaware men were killed, and all of their senior officers were captured. Afterwards, the unit ceased to function as a regiment, being reorganized into two companies. This remnant continued to do its duty, participating in the battles of Cowpens, Guilford Courthouse, Hobkirk's hill and Eutaw Springs. With the addition of two companies that were recruited and incorporated into the existing formations in 1782, the Delaware men continued to serve in the fight for independence until they were disbanded on November 15, 1783.

As part of the Fife and Drum line, Sideshow brings you the Continental Soldier 12" figure, representing the Delaware Regiment at the Battle of Monmouth. The figure has 30 points of articulation and includes Delaware uniform coat, gaitered trousers, buckled shoes, short land pattern musket and bayonet with shoulder carriage, haversack, knapsack, canteen, cartridge box, and military cocked hat with Alliance cockade.

The box included the full above quoted history of the regiment and features handsome period artwork and lithographs. Another historical triumph for Sideshow Collectibles.