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Photographer's Note

The most famous tomb of unknown soldiers who perished in America’s wars is located in Arlington Cemetery in Washington, DC. But the first of these tombs/gravesites is located right in Pennsylvania and is virtually unknown to the American public.

At this peaceful site along the Delaware River are the graves of America’s first unknown soldiers. All these young men died on December 25, 1776 of either disease or starvation during the American Revolution. Around that time General George Washington and his men had been forced to retreat from the British across the state of New Jersey into Pennsylvania. These men survived the retreat only to perish right before finding out about Washington’s victory at the Battle of Trenton, which took place that same day.

There are a total of 23 soldiers buried at this site along the Delaware River. Only one gravestone bears a name of Captain James Moore from the State of New York. The others are all unknown. The site was dedicated as a monument in 1953. In 1993 a fierce storm washed out the bridge that had made the site accessible to the general public by car. It was not a very big bridge and only crossed a small creek that empties into the Delaware. Political entities to this day are still arguing over whose responsibility it is to rebuild the bridge. In the meantime, the site is accessible from the Delaware Canal towpath to cyclists, joggers, and walkers.

The flag on each of the gravestones is first flag of the United States. There are thirteen stars and thirteen stripes on the flag representing the 13 original colonies that fought the war against the British.

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Additional Photos by Linda Richters (richtersl) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 992 W: 583 N: 849] (3546)
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