Benedict Arnold

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Benedict Arnold

Post  tungduong_9102 on Fri 12 Nov 2010 - 17:10

Benedict Arnold V (January 14, 1741 [O.S. January 3, 1740][1][2] – June 14, 1801) was a general during the American Revolutionary War. He began the war in the Continental Army but later defected to the British Army. While he was still a general on the American side, he obtained command of the fort at West Point, New York, and plotted unsuccessfully to surrender it to the British. After the plot was exposed in September 1780, he entered the British Army as a brigadier general.

Born in Connecticut, he was a merchant operating ships on the Atlantic Ocean when the war broke out in 1775. After joining the growing army outside Boston, he distinguished himself through acts of cunning and bravery. His actions included the Capture of Fort Ticonderoga in 1775, successful defensive and delaying tactics despite losing the Battle of Valcour Island on Lake Champlain in 1776, the Battle of Ridgefield, Connecticut (after which he was promoted to major general), operations in relief of the Siege of Fort Stanwix, and key actions during the pivotal Battles of Saratoga in 1777, in which he suffered leg injuries that ended his combat career for several years.

In spite of successes, Arnold was passed over for promotion by the Continental Congress while other officers claimed credit for some of his accomplishments.[3] Adversaries in military and political circles brought charges of corruption or other malfeasance, but he was acquitted in most formal inquiries. Congress investigated his accounts, and found that he owed it money after he had spent much of his own money on the war effort. Frustrated and bitter, Arnold decided to change sides in 1779, and opened secret negotiations with the British. In July 1780, he sought and obtained command of West Point in order to surrender it to the British. Arnold's scheme was exposed when American forces captured British Major John André carrying papers that revealed the plot. Upon learning of André's capture, Arnold fled down the Hudson River to the British sloop-of-war Vulture, narrowly avoiding capture by the forces of George Washington, who had been alerted to the plot.

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