Notes from a British Museum


About one-third of the soldiers employed by the British against the revolutionary American colonists in the late 1770s and early 1780s were Germans. The greatest number of these Germans were the auxiliaries from six minor states and they were collectively referred to as Hessians, even though not all were from Hesse. Many Germans also served in the ranks of the English army, or even in Loyalist units. The slant is more towards military activities in Canada than in the American colonies. The information is biased towards the Germans in Canada for two reasons; General Haldimand, who commanded primarily in Canada, kept voluminous records that went to England while the Americans, winning a battle, kept the surrendering unit's records and did not pass them on to England.

Information discussed includes general background material, the order of battle, the acquisition of auxiliary soldiers, transportation issues, the campaign of 1777, postwar preparations to depart and German stay-behinds, desertions, women and children, and a list of ships. To compile this work, the author screened all of the pertinent material housed in The British Museum, London, England, regarding the German soldiers. This is the first work of this scope to date.


Bruce Burgoyne 

2004, 5½x8½, paper, index, 310 pp.

ISBN: 9780788424878