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 John Armstrong, Sr

John Armstrong, Sr

Brookeborough, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland
Death 9 Mar 1795 (aged 77)
Carlisle, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, USA
Burial Carlisle, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, USA
Memorial ID 6664788 · View Source
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Revolutionary War Continental Army Major General, Continental Congressman. Born in Ireland, he received his education there and became a civil engineer before coming to Pennsylvania as a surveyor for the Penn family. He laid out the plans for Carlisle, Pennsylvania in 1750, became one of its first settlers, and was appointed as surveyor for the newly established Cumberland County. When the French and Indian War began, he was a Colonel in charge of militia troops stationed in Cumberland County. When a group of Native Americans and French soldiers overtook Fort Granville and captured prisoners that were taken back to their fortified village of Kittanning on the Allegheny River, it was Armstrong that led an expedition that destroyed their village and rescued the prisoners. He led the "Forbes Expedition" of 2,700 Pennsylvania troops that forced the French to evacuate and blow up Fort Duquesne. During the campaign he met and became friends with George Washington, then a Colonel of Virginia militia. When the Revolutionary War began John Armstrong Sr. was a Brigadier General in the Pennsylvania militia, but on March 1, 1776, the Congress appointed him to the same rank in the Continental Army. With his engineering skill he was sent to Charleston, South Carolina to contribute to the construction of its defense. Later he returned to his regular army and Pennsylvania militia duties. His Continental Army duties ended when he accepted the position of Major General in the Pennsylvania militia, but his war duties and cooperation with General George Washington would continue. He would participate valiantly in the September 1777 Battle of Brandywine and the October 1777 Battle of Germantown, but with only modest success. At the age of sixty, his health declining, and old wounds bothering him, he was allowed to leave active command after Germantown. He was elected to the Continental Congress after returning to his home town of Carlisle and served from 1777 to 1778, strongly supporting General Washington and the army. He was elected to the Congress again in its final days of 1787 and 1788 and was firm in supporting a new United States Constitution. In 1880, when Pennsylvania formed a new county at Kittanning, where he first became a hero, it was named Armstrong County in his honor.

Bio by: Tom Todd

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Type "O" He was in congress in 1777 not 1877.




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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Garver Graver
  • Added: 6 Aug 2002
  • Find A Grave Memorial 6664788
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John Armstrong, Sr (13 Oct 1717–9 Mar 1795), Find A Grave Memorial no. 6664788, citing Old Graveyard, Carlisle, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .