Portal:Hudson Valley/Selected article/8

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Surrender of General Burgoyne.jpg

The Saratoga Campaign was an attempt by Great Britain to gain military control of the strategically important Hudson River valley in 1777 during the American Revolutionary War. The primary thrust of the campaign was made by an army of 8,000 men under the command of John Burgoyne from Quebec that moved up Lake Champlain and down the Hudson to Saratoga, New York, where the bulk of the army was forced to surrender after the climactic Battles of Saratoga in September and October.

Burgoyne's effort was unsuccessfully supported by Colonel Barry St. Leger's attempt to move on Albany, New York through the Mohawk River valley. His expedition was forced to retreat after losing Indian support in the siege of Fort Stanwix. A third supporting expedition expected by General Burgoyne never materialized (apparently due to miscommunication on that year's campaign goals) when General William Howe sent his army to take Philadelphia rather than sending a portion of it up the Hudson River from New York City. A late effort to support Burgoyne from New York was made by Sir Henry Clinton in early October, but it did not significantly affect the outcome. The American victory was an enormous morale boost to the fledgling nation, and it convinced France to enter the conflict in support of the United States, openly providing money, soldiers, and naval support, as well as a wider theater of war.