Casimir Pulaski Day-1st Monday in March
Why do we recognize Casimir Pulaski Day?
While in Paris, Casimir heard of the American Revolutionary War and the colonies' struggle to break free from England. He wrote Benjamin Franklin, who was in Paris, to ask if he would consider hiring him to fight against the British. After hearing of his reputation as a great leader, Franklin recommended him to General George Washington.
Washington knew that the colonists had no trained cavalry, so he met with Pulaski and introduced him to LaFayette and John Hancock. In September 1777, Washington convinced Congress to give Pulaski temporary command of the small, new cavalry detachment. On the same day Pulaski saved military supplies and pushed back the British at the Battle of Brandywine. The next day he prevented a surprise attack at an area called Warren's Tavern. Congress acknowledged Pulaski's leadership and bravery and commissioned him as Brigadier General. He was placed in command of four light cavalry regiments.
During the winter at Valley Forge in 1777-78, Pulaski wanted to train the cavalry properly, but was instructed by Congress to rest his men during the winter, as was customary at the time. Later in 1778, Pulaski became frustrated that his cavalry had not been involved in any important battles. Considering resignation, he asked Washington to allow him to start his own legion. He offered to recruit men, outfit them, and train them his own way. He would prepare this cavalry for active duty. After many letters from Pulaski, Congress finally agreed. With 68 horses and 200 foot soldiers, the Pulaski Legion would become the colonists' first true fully-trained cavalry.
He recruited many men, European and some Americans. At first, some of the American soldiers did not like him because he did not speak English, but they soon began to respect him in battle for his courage and intelligence.
During a battle in Savannah, Georgia, Casimir was wounded by a cannon. He died from complications of this wound. The first Monday in March has been designated Pulaski Day in Illinois. There is also Pulaski County honoring this great war hero. The Pulaski National Monument is located in Savannah.
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Text from http://www.mcleansboro.com/features/casmir_pulaski.htm
CPL Celebrates CASIMIR PULASKI DAY-