LITTLE EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP — A small crowd of residents and historical enthusiasts gathered at the Pulaski Monument at Pulaski and Radio roads Sunday afternoon to remember the massacre of 50 of Count Kazimierz Pulaski’s troops in a surprise attack by more than 200 British troops 233 years ago this week during the Revolutionary War.
Dale Denda, president of the Egg Harbor Historical Society, told the tale of one of the most infamous battles of the Revolutionary War.
Denda and history buffs laid wreaths at the monument built in 1894 to commemorate what has locally been called the Little Egg Harbor Massacre on Oct. 15, 1778.
Before the attack, Gen. George Washington dispatched Pulaski and his troops to assist patriots in the Battle of Chestnut Neck. The troops were late arriving and instead set up camps to hold off the British soldiers.
In his presentation to a small group of people, Denda said Pulaski’s troops never had a chance.
George Czurlanis, 90, of Little Egg Harbor Township, has worked for years to keep the monument and ceremony alive. In 2006, the monument was almost relocated by developers, but Czurlanis, a World War II veteran, verified that the site was the location of the massacre and the monument was saved.
Kathleen Francis, of Little Egg Harbor Township, was dressed in Revolutionary War period costume and watched as the ceremony took place. Flags were lowered to half staff and a wreath was laid against the pillar-shaped stone monument.
“I’m here to support my grandfather George Czurlanis because he worked to have this ceremony, which started years ago. There was a huge Revolutionary and Colonial movement in this area that no one really knows about,” Francis said.
Denda said it is the Egg Harbor Historical Society’s job to preserve that history and teach children and young people about what happened in the township 233 years ago.
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