Saturday, November 19, 2011

Headless Soldier of Cooches Bridge - Newark, Delaware

During the Revolutionary War, British and Hessian troops were advancing on Philadelphia.  Brigadier General William Maxwell led a small force on a mission to delay the British advance so that Washington could evacuate Philadelphia.  One of those soldiers still marches on the road to Philadelphia to this day.

Cooches Bridge near Newark, Delware long ago

On September 3, 1777 American forces met up with advancing British forces on Old Cooches Bridge Road in what some refer to today as The Battle of Cooches Bridge or The Battle of Iron Hill.  After several skirmishes, the Colonial forces pulled back to Cooches Bridge where another skirmish ensued.  During the battle, fighting was fierce.  It is said that one British soldier killed on the bridge, literally had his head blown off.  Subsequently, the American forces were overrun and the British forces eventually captured Philadelphia.  However, General Washington was able to pull out of the city before hand.

Cooches Bridge today

Today it is said that a Revolutionary soldier can be seen on occasion walking up and down the Old Cooches Bridge Road as well as other local roads.  The figure, when encountered, appears to be dressed in British Revolutionary era uniform and is missing a head.  These encounters mostly occur on moonless nights according to the majority of sightings.  Cooches Bridge is still standing today although it may look slightly different.  It can be found just off of interstate 95 at the intersection of Old Baltimore Pike and Old Cooches Bridge Road.

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