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A study of the life of benedict arnold

London, England American military general Although he fought with skill and courage in many campaigns during the American Revolution 1775—83General Benedict Arnold is best known as the man who betrayed his country.

He was one of only two of his mother's eleven children to survive into adulthood. His mother had been a prosperous widow before marrying Arnold's father, a merchant. However, Arnold's father did not manage the family's money well, and they were financially ruined when Arnold was thirteen. He was forced to leave school and go to work learning to be an apothecary, a position similar to that of a modern-day pharmacist.

As a young man, Arnold was a risk-taker who looked for outlets for his energetic and impulsive taking action before thinking things through nature. He volunteered for the French and Indian War 1754—63a war fought between France and England in America for control of the colonial lands, but at eighteen he deserted in order to be with his mother, who was dying.

In the 1760s he traded with Canada and the West Indies as a merchant and a sea captain.

Benedict Arnold Biography

He took his hot-headed nature to sea with him, fighting at least two duels while on trading voyages. He was a financial success as a trader, but he was also accused of smuggling. Upon hearing of these events he set out as the head of a company of Connecticut militia for Cambridge, Massachusetts, where George Washington 1732—1799 was gathering an army to fight the British forces.

  1. By the end of 1779, Arnold had begun secret negotiations with the British to surrender the American fort at West Point, New York, in return for money and a command in the British army. Burgoyne not only Benedict Arnold.
  2. For More Information Brandt, Clare.
  3. Later Life After fleeing to the enemy side, Arnold received a commission with the British army and served in several minor engagements against the Americans. Meanwhile, he faced a formal charge of stealing goods and property from Montreal merchants during the Canadian campaign.
  4. His mother had been a prosperous widow before marrying Arnold's father, a merchant.

Although he marched to Massachusetts without military orders to do so, Arnold was soon given an official mission. His first military engagement was the attack the next month on Fort Ticonderoga in northeastern New York, where the British had a supply of artillery, a type of large-caliber weaponry that includes cannons. The attack operation was successful, but Arnold got little of the credit for this success.

Arnold's second assignment was with an expedition against Canada. Leaving Cambridge on September 19, 1775, he led his troops north through Maine into Canada. By land and water and in snow and storms, he reached Quebec, Canada, in early November. Together the two forces assaulted Quebec on December 31, but the attack failed; Montgomery lost his life and Arnold was left with a severe leg wound.

Who Served Here?

Arnold next went to Lake Champlain to prevent the British from using it as a means of traveling from Canada to New York. He lost two naval battles on the lake in October 1776, but he had effectively delayed the British in their southward movement. In the same month Congress made Arnold a brigadier general an army officer above a colonel.

Honor and accusations The winter of 1776—77 was an unhappy one for Arnold. His hot temper, impulsiveness, and impatience had earned him many enemies who now made all sorts of charges against him. He was accused of misconduct poor behavior on the march through Maine, of incompetence failure to successfully carry out a mission on Lake Champlain, and more.

Worse yet, in February 1777 Congress promoted five other brigadier generals, all Arnold's juniors, to the rank of major general an army officer who is above a brigadier general. Only Washington's pleas kept Arnold from resigning from the army. Fortunately, the coming of spring gave him the chance for a successful operation. He rounded up the local militia and raced to stop the enemy.

Although he got there too late to prevent the destruction of a study of the life of benedict arnold supplies, he did force the British to flee.

A grateful Congress promoted him to major general on May 2, but he was still below the other five in rank. Meanwhile, he faced a formal charge of stealing goods and property from Montreal merchants during the Canadian campaign. He was cleared of the charge, but his anger at the accusation moved him to resign from the army in July 1777.

Once again Washington pleaded with him—this time to rejoin the army. Washington needed him for service in northern New York to block a bold British plan.

Burgoyne not only Benedict Arnold. Arnold played a major role in the two battles that led to the British defeat. Burgoyne himself said of Arnold that "it was his doing. Arnold's next assignment was command of the military post at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, which the British had left in June 1778.

Early Life

In April 1779 he married Margaret Shippen, the daughter of a wealthy Philadelphian. His first wife had died in 1775. Moving in wealthy social circles, Arnold lived expensively, spent beyond his means, and soon found himself heavily in debt.

At the same time he was being charged with a number of offenses connected to using his military office for private gain. He demanded a trial in Congress, which began in May 1779. The verdict, or decision, handed down in December found him not guilty of most charges but ordered Washington to reprimand him.

Benedict Arnold

The general did this, but mildly, in April 1780. End as a traitor By this time Arnold had already started on the road to treason. Personally hurt by Congress's treatment and badly in need of money, he had begun to pass information on American troop movements and strength of units to the British in exchange for money as early as May or June of 1779.

  • Worse yet, in February 1777 Congress promoted five other brigadier generals, all Arnold's juniors, to the rank of major general an army officer who is above a brigadier general;
  • Early in the summer of 1780, he thought up a plan to turn over the important post at West Point, New York, to the English for the sum of ten thousand pounds;
  • He went on to open his own apothecary.

Early in the summer of 1780, he thought up a plan to turn over the important post at West Point, New York, to the English for the sum of ten thousand pounds. He persuaded Washington to place him in command there in order to carry out this scheme. Arnold spent the rest of the war in a British uniform fighting his own countrymen. He went to London in 1781 and died there twenty years later on June 14, 1801, forgotten in England and despised in America.

  • Moving in wealthy social circles, Arnold lived expensively, spent beyond his means, and soon found himself heavily in debt;
  • After succumbing to a bout of gout himself, Arnold traveled to Cambridge to settle up his accounts with the Massachusetts Committee of Safety;
  • Ken Johnston portrays Benedict Arnold;
  • He was given only a small portion of his expenses, nowhere near his total bill;
  • Moving in wealthy social circles, Arnold lived expensively, spent beyond his means, and soon found himself heavily in debt.

To this day, calling someone a "Benedict Arnold" in America is a way of saying that person has betrayed his or her side. For More Information Brandt, Clare. The Man in the Mirror: A Life of Benedict Arnold.

  • Arnold's next assignment was command of the military post at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, which the British had left in June 1778;
  • The Case of Benedict Arnold;
  • He was one of only two of his mother's eleven children to survive into adulthood;
  • Later that year, Arnold led an ill-fated expedition on a harrowing trek from Maine to Quebec.

The Case of Benedict Arnold. Benedict Arnold, Revolutionary Warrior: An American Warrior Reconsidered. New York University Press, 1997.