Just about everyone today is familiar with Benedict Arnold, the American general of Revolutionary days, and how his very name has become synonymous with the word “traitor.”
But not everyone is aware of Arnold's record of true heroism in the history of my state, Connecticut.
After his heroic service at the Battle of Ridgefield, he was made a major general; no officer in the American army had a better record of courage and leadership.
History cannot tell us the exact moment when Arnold later turned against the United States (and tried to sell West Point to the British), but it is clear that over time he had developed a deep hatred for things American. His attack on New London in 1781 was astonishing: that was his home – he was born and raised there – and he put the entire region to the torch in an attack that was a notoriously cruel and vicious operation.
Benedict Arnold is no longer a hero in the Nutmeg State, but there's no question that he was a giant of a man and a fascinating figure of Connecticut history.
1 year ago