THIS DAY IN VIRGINIA HISTORY
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December 09, 1775
Colonel William Woodford Wrote about the Battle of Great Bridge
This letter is from Colonel William Woodford (1734–1780), commander of the 2d Virginia Regiment. In it he described the failure of the attack launched by the royal governor, John Murray, fourth earl of Dunmore (1732–1809), against Virginia troops stationed at the bridge over the South Branch of the Elizabeth River early in the morning on December 9, 1775. Mounting a successful defense, the Virginians killed more than 13 British soldiers, including Captain Charles Fordyce, and wounded nearly 50 others. The Virginians experienced no losses. The Battle of Great Bridge was the first significant land engagement of the Revolutionary War in the South.