York Town Square

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York County’s American Revolution general not his half-brother’s keeper

Gen. James Ewing of Hellam Township was perhaps the highest ranking York countian serving in the Continental Army.
He headed forces in the Battle of Trenton in 1776, though the 1,000 militiamen he led could not cross the Delaware into New Jersey downriver from George Washington because of hazardous conditions.
Ewing had another problem – a controversial half-brother Dr. John Connolly. This was the same John Connolly who led a prisoner of war gripe session about conditions in the York County Prison… .

Connolly, arrested on his way to gather a frontier unit of Tories and Indians, served most of the war in custody. His Toryism lasted past the end of the conflict.
According to “Nine Months in York Town“:
In a visit to Ewing’s home, “Woodbine,” it is said he boasted that, even then, Britain’s soldiers could come down from Canada and whup the United States.
An unnerved Ewing rose from his chair and grabbed Connolly by the throat.
Only pleas from Ewing’s wife separated the two strong-willed men.