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Pulaski, Casimir


Revolutionary leader Casimir Pulaski was born in Poland on March 4, 1747. He fought for Polish independence from the Russian Empire, before coming to America to aid the patriots fighting for independence from Great Britain. He fought well at the Battle of Brandywine, leading to his appointment as a Brigadier-General in charge of the American cavalry.

In October of 1779, Pulaski - now in command of both American and French forces, tried to raise the British siege of Savannah. The British had controlled Savannah for almost a year, and the combined French and American forces under Pulaski’s leadership made a valiant attempt to regain control of the city for the Americans. Most of the fighting occurred on Spring Hill Redoubt, southwest of the city. Pulaski led a cavalry charge, and was wounded by a bullet that pierced leg. He was taken to an American ship, where he died from his wound, and subsequent infection, on October 11, 1779. Pulaski was the only high-ranking, foreign-born officer to die for the American cause during the Revolutionary War. A monument was erected in his honor in Monterey Square in Savannah during the 1850s, and what were believed to be his remains were unearthed and reburied under the monument. Other reports had him being buried at sea.

Fort Pulaski, built on Cockspur Island to protect Savannah during the Civil War, was named in honor of Casimir Pulaski.

Pulaski, Casimir View large image

Source: Polish American Center