Glover’s Marblehead Regiment held its annual Delaware Crossing ceremony down at the Town Landing Friday evening. As a fiery sun set over the water, the men, led by Captain Seamus Daly, made their way down State Street for a ceremonial speech and shooting of muskets.
The ceremony was to honor the 500 Marblehead men that were part of John Glover’s Regiment who were vital in the successful crossing of the Delaware River on Dec. 25, 1776.
“In the summer of 1776, Washington’s army have been recruiting forces for pretty much four months. The Continental Army was on the brink of disintegration due to general despair and the impending expiry of enlistments at the end of the year. With his army about to disappear, Washington determined that bold action was required in the form of a counter attack,” Daly said at the beginning of his speech.
The original plan for the night of Christmas Day was to cross the Delaware River at three places, but because weather conditions were so harsh, two of those crossings failed. The third crossing — a success — was led by Marblehead men, Daly said.
He listed the soldiers who played a significant role that night back in 1776. Then, the men of Glover’s Marblehead Regiment fired their muskets three times, reloading after each shot.
“We just have the smoothbore muskets. They’ve got a firing pan and put powder and a ball down the barrel, a small charge in the pan and then when the flint strikes … you get a spark,” Daly said.
Daly has been part of the regiment since 2006. He became an officer in 2010 and eventually the captain a few years after that, he said.
The regiment has more events coming up over the next year, he said. Its next one is a memorial march to Burial Hill on January 28. “It will kick off at the old townhouse,” Daly said. “We march under twilight in darkness, to the cemetery of Burial Hill where General Glover’s grave is, and we deliver a commemoration of General Glover’s life.”
The regiment will also hold events on Memorial Day and the Fourth of July. To join the regiment, call or email Daly at his contact information listed on the regiment’s website at gloversregiment.org.