Crowds relive Washington’s 1776 river crossing

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John Godzieba, left, playing the role of Gen. George Washington, walks behind his troops onto a dock during the 61st annual re-enactment of Washington's daring Christmas 1776 crossing of the river, the trek that turned the tide of the Revolutionary War. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

John Godzieba, left, playing the role of Gen. George Washington, walks behind his troops onto a dock during the 61st annual re-enactment of Washington’s daring Christmas 1776 crossing of the river, the trek that turned the tide of the Revolutionary War. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

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WASHINGTON CROSSING, N.J. (AP) — George Washington has made his annual Christmas Day ride across the Delaware River.

Washington’s daring Christmas 1776 crossing of the river turned the tide of the Revolutionary War. The 61st reenactment of it was staged Wednesday.

Hundreds of people gather each year to hear Washington’s stand-in deliver stirring words to the troops and watch three boats make the crossing from Pennsylvania to New Jersey.

During the original crossing, boats ferried 2,400 soldiers, 200 horses and 18 cannons across the river. The troops marched 8 miles downriver before battling Hessian mercenaries in the streets of Trenton.

Thirty Hessians were killed. Two Continental soldiers froze to death on the march, but none died in battle.

 

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