Henry Knox
Overview
 
Henry Knox was a military officer of the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

 and later the United States Army
United States Army
The United States Army is the main branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is the largest and oldest established branch of the U.S. military, and is one of seven U.S. uniformed services...

, and also served as the first United States Secretary of War
United States Secretary of War
The Secretary of War was a member of the United States President's Cabinet, beginning with George Washington's administration. A similar position, called either "Secretary at War" or "Secretary of War," was appointed to serve the Congress of the Confederation under the Articles of Confederation...

.

Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, he owned and operated a bookstore there, cultivating an interest in military history and joining a local artillery company. When the American Revolutionary War
American Revolutionary War
The American Revolutionary War , the American War of Independence, or simply the Revolutionary War, began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen British colonies in North America, and ended in a global war between several European great powers.The war was the result of the...

 broke out in 1775, he befriended General George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

, and quickly rose to become the chief artillery officer of the Continental Army.
Encyclopedia
Henry Knox was a military officer of the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

 and later the United States Army
United States Army
The United States Army is the main branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for land-based military operations. It is the largest and oldest established branch of the U.S. military, and is one of seven U.S. uniformed services...

, and also served as the first United States Secretary of War
United States Secretary of War
The Secretary of War was a member of the United States President's Cabinet, beginning with George Washington's administration. A similar position, called either "Secretary at War" or "Secretary of War," was appointed to serve the Congress of the Confederation under the Articles of Confederation...

.

Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, he owned and operated a bookstore there, cultivating an interest in military history and joining a local artillery company. When the American Revolutionary War
American Revolutionary War
The American Revolutionary War , the American War of Independence, or simply the Revolutionary War, began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen British colonies in North America, and ended in a global war between several European great powers.The war was the result of the...

 broke out in 1775, he befriended General George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

, and quickly rose to become the chief artillery officer of the Continental Army. In this role he accompanied Washington on most of his campaigns, and had some involvement in many major actions of the war. He established training centers for artillerymen and manufacturing facilities for weaponry that were valuable assets to the fledgling nation.

Following the adoption of the United States Constitution
United States Constitution
The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the United States of America. It is the framework for the organization of the United States government and for the relationship of the federal government with the states, citizens, and all people within the United States.The first three...

, he became President Washington's Secretary of War. In this role he oversaw the development of coastal fortifications, worked to improve the preparedness of local militia, and oversaw the nation's military activity in the Northwest Indian War
Northwest Indian War
The Northwest Indian War , also known as Little Turtle's War and by various other names, was a war fought between the United States and a confederation of numerous American Indian tribes for control of the Northwest Territory...

. He was formally responsible for the nation's relationship with the Indian population in the territories it claimed, articulating a policy that established federal government supremacy over the states in relating to Indian nations, and called for treating Indian nations as sovereign. Knox's idealistic views on the subject were frustrated by ongoing illegal settlements and fraudulent land transfers involving Indian lands.

He retired to what is now Thomaston, Maine
Thomaston, Maine
Thomaston, Maine is a town on the coast of Maine the United States. The name may also refer to:*Thomaston , Maine, a census-designated place comprising the center of the town*South Thomaston, Maine, an adjacent town...

 in 1795, where he oversaw the rise of a business empire built on borrowed money. He died in 1806 from an infection received after swallowing a chicken bone, leaving an estate that was virtually bankrupt.

Early life and marriage

Henry Knox was born on Long Lane
Federal Street (Boston)
Federal Street is a street in the Financial District of Boston, Massachusetts. Prior to 1788, it was known as Long Lane. The street was re-named after state leaders met there in 1788 to determine Massachusetts' ratification of the United States Constitution...

 in Boston
Boston
Boston is the capital of and largest city in Massachusetts, and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is regarded as the unofficial "Capital of New England" for its economic and cultural impact on the entire New England region. The city proper had...

 to parents of Scotch-Irish origin, William Knox and Mary (née Campbell). His father was a ship builder who, due to financial reverses, left the family for St Eustatius in the West Indies where he died in 1759 of unknown causes.

Henry was admitted to the Boston Latin School
Boston Latin School
The Boston Latin School is a public exam school founded on April 23, 1635, in Boston, Massachusetts. It is both the first public school and oldest existing school in the United States....

, where he studied Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

, Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

, arithmetic, and European history. Since he was the oldest son still at home when his father died, he left school at the age of 12 and became a clerk in a bookstore to support his mother. The shop's owner, Nicholas Bowes, became a surrogate father figure for the boy. However, Knox was also involved in Boston's street gangs, becoming one of the toughest fighters in his neighborhood. Impressed by a militiary demonstration, he joined a local artillery company called The Train at 18.
On March 5, 1770 Knox was a witness to the Boston massacre
Boston Massacre
The Boston Massacre, called the Boston Riot by the British, was an incident on March 5, 1770, in which British Army soldiers killed five civilian men. British troops had been stationed in Boston, capital of the Province of Massachusetts Bay, since 1768 in order to protect and support...

. According to his affidavit, he attempted to defuse the situation, trying to convince the British soldiers to return to their quarters. He also testified at the trials of the soldiers, in which all but two were acquitted. In 1771 he opened his own bookshop, the London Book Store, in Boston "opposite William's Court
Pie Alley (Boston)
Pie Alley or Pi Alley in Boston, Massachusetts, is located off Washington Street, near the Old City Hall on School Street. The origin of the short street's nickname remains in question...

 in Cornhill
Washington Street (Boston)
Washington Street is a street originating in downtown Boston, Massachusetts that extends southwestward to the Massachusetts-Rhode Island state line. The majority of it was built as the Norfolk and Bristol Turnpike in the early nineteenth century...

." Largely self-educated, he stocked books on military science, and also questioned soldiers who frequented his shop in military matters. In 1772 he cofounded the Boston Grenadier Corps as an offshoot of The Train, and served as its second in command. Shortly before his 23rd birthday Knox accidentally discharged a shotgun, shooting two fingers off his left hand. He managed to bind the wound up and reach a doctor, who sewed the wound up.

Knox supported the Sons of Liberty
Sons of Liberty
The Sons of Liberty were a political group made up of American patriots that originated in the pre-independence North American British colonies. The group was formed to protect the rights of the colonists from the usurpations by the British government after 1766...

, a organization of agitators against what they considered repressive British colonial policies. It is unknown if he participated in the 1773 Boston Tea Party
Boston Tea Party
The Boston Tea Party was a direct action by colonists in Boston, a town in the British colony of Massachusetts, against the British government and the monopolistic East India Company that controlled all the tea imported into the colonies...

, but he did serve on guard duty before the incident to make sure no tea was unloaded from the Dartmouth, one of the ships involved. The next year he refused a consignment of tea sent to him by James Rivington
James Rivington
James Rivington was an English-born American journalist who published one of the most infamous Loyalist newspapers in the American colonies, Rivington's Gazette.-Early life:...

, a Loyalist in New York.

Henry married Lucy Flucker (1756–1824), the daughter of Boston Loyalists, on June 16, 1774, despite opposition from her father that was due to their differing political views. Lucy's brother served in the British Army, and her family attempted to lure Knox to service there. Despite long separations due to his military service, the couple were devoted to one another for the rest of his life, and carried on an extensive correspondence. Since the couple fled Boston in 1775, she remained essentially homeless until the British evacuated the city in March 1776. Even afterward, she often traveled to visit Knox in the field. Her parents left, never to return, with the British during their withdrawal from Boston
Evacuation Day (Massachusetts)
March 17 is Evacuation Day, a holiday observed in Suffolk County and also by the public schools in Cambridge and Somerville, Massachusetts. The holiday commemorates the evacuation of British forces from the city of Boston following the Siege of Boston, early in the American Revolutionary War...

 after the Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

 fortified Dorchester Heights
Fortification of Dorchester Heights
The Fortification of Dorchester Heights was a decisive action early in the American Revolutionary War that precipitated the end of the siege of Boston and the withdrawal of British troops from that city....

, a success that ironically hinged upon Knox's Ticonderoga expedition.

Siege of Boston

When the war broke out with the Battles of Lexington and Concord
Battles of Lexington and Concord
The Battles of Lexington and Concord were the first military engagements of the American Revolutionary War. They were fought on April 19, 1775, in Middlesex County, Province of Massachusetts Bay, within the towns of Lexington, Concord, Lincoln, Menotomy , and Cambridge, near Boston...

 on April 19, 1775, Knox and Lucy sneaked out of Boston, and Knox joined the militia army besieging the city
Siege of Boston
The Siege of Boston was the opening phase of the American Revolutionary War, in which New England militiamen—who later became part of the Continental Army—surrounded the town of Boston, Massachusetts, to prevent movement by the British Army garrisoned within...

. His abandoned bookshop was looted and all of its stock destroyed or stolen. He served under General Artemas Ward
Artemas Ward
Artemas Ward was an American major general in the American Revolutionary War and a Congressman from Massachusetts...

, putting his acquired engineering skills to use developing fortifications around the city. He directed rebel cannonfire at the Battle of Bunker Hill
Battle of Bunker Hill
The Battle of Bunker Hill took place on June 17, 1775, mostly on and around Breed's Hill, during the Siege of Boston early in the American Revolutionary War...

. When General George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

 arrived in July 1775 to take command of the army, he was impressed by the work Knox had done. The two also immediately developed a like for one another, and Knox began to regularly interact with Washington and the other generals of the developing Continental Army
Continental Army
The Continental Army was formed after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War by the colonies that became the United States of America. Established by a resolution of the Continental Congress on June 14, 1775, it was created to coordinate the military efforts of the Thirteen Colonies in...

. Knox did not have a commission in the army, but John Adams
John Adams
John Adams was an American lawyer, statesman, diplomat and political theorist. A leading champion of independence in 1776, he was the second President of the United States...

 in particular worked in the Second Continental Congress
Second Continental Congress
The Second Continental Congress was a convention of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies that started meeting on May 10, 1775, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, soon after warfare in the American Revolutionary War had begun. It succeeded the First Continental Congress, which met briefly during 1774,...

 to acquire for him a commission as colonel of the army's artillery regiment. Knox bolstered his own case by writing to Adams that Richard Gridley
Richard Gridley
Richard Gridley was born in Boston, Massachusetts. He was the son of Richard Gridley and Rebecca Scarborough. He was a soldier and engineer who served for the British Army during the French and Indian Wars and for the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War.He married Hannah Deming...

, the older leader of the artillery under Ward, was disliked by his men and in poor health.

As the siege wore on, the idea arose that cannons recently captured at the fall of forts Ticonderoga
Capture of Fort Ticonderoga
The Capture of Fort Ticonderoga occurred during the American Revolutionary War on May 10, 1775, when a small force of Green Mountain Boys led by Ethan Allen and Colonel Benedict Arnold overcame a small British garrison at the fort and looted the personal belongings of the garrison...

 and Crown Point
Fort Crown Point
Crown Point, was a British fort built by the combined efforts of both British and Provincial troops in North America in 1759 at narrows on Lake Champlain on the border between modern New York State and Vermont...

 in upstate New York could have a decisive impact on its outcome. Knox is generally credited with suggesting the prospect to Washington, who thereupon put him in charge an expedition to retrieve them even though Knox's commission had not yet arrived. Reaching Ticonderoga on December 5, Knox commenced what came to be known as the Noble train of artillery
Noble train of artillery
The noble train of artillery, also known as the Knox Expedition, was an expedition led by Continental Army Colonel Henry Knox to transport heavy weaponry that had been captured at Fort Ticonderoga to the Continental Army camps outside Boston, Massachusetts during the winter of 1775–1776.Knox went...

, hauling by ox-drawn sled 60 tons of cannons and other armaments across some 300 miles (482.8 km) of ice-covered rivers and snow-draped Berkshire Mountains
The Berkshires
The Berkshires , is a highland geologic region located in the western parts of Massachusetts and Connecticut.Also referred to as the Berkshire Hills, Berkshire Mountains, and Berkshire Plateau, the region enjoys a vibrant tourism industry based on music, arts, and recreation.-Definition:The term...

 to the Boston siege camps.

The region was lightly-populated and Knox had to overcome difficulties hiring personnel and draft animals. On several occasions cannons crashed through the ice on river crossings, but the detail's men were always able to recover them. In the end, what Knox had expected to take just two weeks actually took more than six, and he was finally able to report the arrival of the weapons train to Washington on January 25, 1776. Called by historian Victor Brooks "one of the most stupendous feats of logistics" of the entire war, Knox's effort is commemorated by a series of plaques marking the Henry Knox Trail
Henry Knox Trail
The Henry Knox Trail, also known as the Knox Cannon Trail, is a network of roads and paths that traces the route of Colonel Henry Knox's "noble train of artillery" from Fort Ticonderoga to the Continental Army camp outside Boston, Massachusetts early in the American Revolutionary War.-History:Knox...

 in New York and Massachusetts.

Upon the cannons' arrival in Cambridge they were immediately deployed to fortify the Dorchester Heights
Fortification of Dorchester Heights
The Fortification of Dorchester Heights was a decisive action early in the American Revolutionary War that precipitated the end of the siege of Boston and the withdrawal of British troops from that city....

 recently taken by Washington. So commanding was the new battery over Boston harbor the British withdrew their fleet to Halifax
City of Halifax
Halifax is a city in Canada, which was the capital of the province of Nova Scotia and shire town of Halifax County. It was the largest city in Atlantic Canada until it was amalgamated into Halifax Regional Municipality in 1996...

. With the siege ended, Knox undertook the improvement of defenses in Connecticut
Connecticut
Connecticut is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It is bordered by Rhode Island to the east, Massachusetts to the north, and the state of New York to the west and the south .Connecticut is named for the Connecticut River, the major U.S. river that approximately...

, Rhode Island
Rhode Island
The state of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, more commonly referred to as Rhode Island , is a state in the New England region of the United States. It is the smallest U.S. state by area...

, and New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

 in ancitipation of British attack there. In New York he met Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton was a Founding Father, soldier, economist, political philosopher, one of America's first constitutional lawyers and the first United States Secretary of the Treasury...

, commander of the local artillery. The two men formed a close friendship that lasted until Hamilton's death in 1804. During his military service Knox also established a close friendship with fellow Massachusetts native Benjamin Lincoln
Benjamin Lincoln
Benjamin Lincoln was an American army officer. He served as a major general in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War...

.

New York and New Jersey campaign

Knox was with Washington's army during the New York and New Jersey campaign
New York and New Jersey campaign
The New York and New Jersey campaign was a series of battles for control of New York City and the state of New Jersey in the American Revolutionary War between British forces under General Sir William Howe and the Continental Army under General George Washington in 1776 and the winter months of 1777...

, including most of the major engagements resulting in the loss of New York City. He narrowly escaped capture following the British invasion of Manhattan
Landing at Kip's Bay
The Landing at Kip's Bay was a British amphibious landing during the New York Campaign in the American Revolutionary War on September 15, 1776, occurring on the eastern shore of present-day Manhattan....

, only making it back to the main Continental Army lines through the offices of Aaron Burr
Aaron Burr
Aaron Burr, Jr. was an important political figure in the early history of the United States of America. After serving as a Continental Army officer in the Revolutionary War, Burr became a successful lawyer and politician...

. He was in charge of logistics in the critical crossing of the Delaware River that preceded the December 26, 1776 at the Battle of Trenton
Battle of Trenton
The Battle of Trenton took place on December 26, 1776, during the American Revolutionary War, after General George Washington's crossing of the Delaware River north of Trenton, New Jersey. The hazardous crossing in adverse weather made it possible for Washington to lead the main body of the...

. Though hampered by ice and cold, with John Glover's Marbleheaders (14th Continental Regiment
14th Continental Regiment
The 14th Continental Regiment, also known as the Marblehead Regiment and Glover's Regiment, was raised as a Massachusetts militia regiment in 1775, and taken into the Continental Army establishment during the summer of 1775 as the 23rd Massachusetts Regiment. When the Continental Army was...

) manning the boats, he got the attack force of men, horses and artillery across the river without loss. Following the battle he returned the same force, along with hundreds of prisoners, captured supplies and all the boats back across the river by the afternoon of December 26. Knox was promoted to brigadier general
Brigadier General
Brigadier general is a senior rank in the armed forces. It is the lowest ranking general officer in some countries, usually sitting between the ranks of colonel and major general. When appointed to a field command, a brigadier general is typically in command of a brigade consisting of around 4,000...

 for this accomplishment, and given command of an artillery corps expanded to five regiments. The army again crossed the river a few days later after the decision to make a stand at Trenton. Knox was with the army at the January 2, 1777 at the Battle of the Assunpink Creek, and again the next day at Princeton
Battle of Princeton
The Battle of Princeton was a battle in which General George Washington's revolutionary forces defeated British forces near Princeton, New Jersey....

.
In 1777 while the army was in winter quarters at Morristown, New Jersey
Morristown, New Jersey
Morristown is a town in Morris County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the town population was 18,411. It is the county seat of Morris County. Morristown became characterized as "the military capital of the American Revolution" because of its strategic role in the...

, Knox returned to Massachusetts to improve the Army's artillery manufacturing capability. He raised an additional battalion of artillerymen and established an armory
Springfield Armory
The Springfield Armory, located in the City of Springfield, Massachusetts - from 1777 until its closing in 1968 - was the primary center for the manufacture of U.S. military firearms. After its controversial closing during the Vietnam War, the Springfield Armory was declared Western Massachusetts'...

 at Springfield, Massachusetts
Springfield, Massachusetts
Springfield is the most populous city in Western New England, and the seat of Hampden County, Massachusetts, United States. Springfield sits on the eastern bank of the Connecticut River near its confluence with three rivers; the western Westfield River, the eastern Chicopee River, and the eastern...

 before returning to the main army in the spring. That armory, and a second at Yorktown, Pennsylvania
Yorktown, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Yorktown is a neighborhood in North Philadelphia. It is located north of Poplar and west of Ludlow....

 established by one of his subordinates, remained valuable sources of war materiel for the rest of the war.

Philadelphia campaign

Knox returned to the main army for the 1777 campaign. In June he learned that Congress had appointed Philippe Charles Tronson du Coudray, a French soldier of fortune, to command the artillery. Du Coudray's appointment upset not only Knox, who immediately threatened his resignation to Congress, but also John Sullivan
John Sullivan
John Sullivan was the third son of Irish immigrants, a United States general in the Revolutionary War, a delegate in the Continental Congress and a United States federal judge....

 and Nathanael Greene
Nathanael Greene
Nathanael Greene was a major general of the Continental Army in the American Revolutionary War. When the war began, Greene was a militia private, the lowest rank possible; he emerged from the war with a reputation as George Washington's most gifted and dependable officer. Many places in the United...

, who also protested the politically-motivated appointment. Du Coudray was subsequently reassigned to the post of inspector general, and died in a fall from his horse while crossing the Schuylkill River
Schuylkill River
The Schuylkill River is a river in Pennsylvania. It is a designated Pennsylvania Scenic River.The river is about long. Its watershed of about lies entirely within the state of Pennsylvania. The source of its eastern branch is in the Appalachian Mountains at Tuscarora Springs, near Tamaqua in...

 in September 1777.

Knox was present at Brandywine
Battle of Brandywine
The Battle of Brandywine, also known as the Battle of the Brandywine or the Battle of Brandywine Creek, was fought between the American army of Major General George Washington and the British-Hessian army of General Sir William Howe on September 11, 1777. The British defeated the Americans and...

, the first major battle of the Philadelphia campaign
Philadelphia campaign
The Philadelphia campaign was a British initiative in the American Revolutionary War to gain control of Philadelphia, which was then the seat of the Second Continental Congress...

, and at Germantown
Battle of Germantown
The Battle of Germantown, a battle in the Philadelphia campaign of the American Revolutionary War, was fought on October 4, 1777, at Germantown, Pennsylvania between the British army led by Sir William Howe and the American army under George Washington...

. At Germantown he made the critical suggestion, approved by Washington, to capture rather than bypass the Chew House, a stone mansion that the British had occupied as a strong defensive position. This turned out to significantly delay the army's advance and gave the British an opportunity to reform their lines. Knox afterward wrote to Lucy, "To [morning fog and] the enemy's taking possession of some stone buildings in Germantown, is to be ascribed the loss of the victory." Knox was also present at the Battle of Monmouth
Battle of Monmouth
The Battle of Monmouth was an American Revolutionary War battle fought on June 28, 1778 in Monmouth County, New Jersey. The Continental Army under General George Washington attacked the rear of the British Army column commanded by Lieutenant General Sir Henry Clinton as they left Monmouth Court...

 in July 1778, where Washington commended him for the artillery's performance. The army saw no further action that year, but privateer
Privateer
A privateer is a private person or ship authorized by a government by letters of marque to attack foreign shipping during wartime. Privateering was a way of mobilizing armed ships and sailors without having to spend public money or commit naval officers...

s that Knox and fellow Massachusetts native Henry Jackson
Henry Jackson (general)
Born in Boston, Massachusetts, on 19 October 1747, Henry Jackson was the youngest son of Joseph and Susannah Jackson. Before the War for Independence, he was an officer of the First Corps of Cadets in Boston, which was disbanded during the British occupation...

 invested in were not as successful as they hoped; many of them were captured by the British.

Artillery training school and Yorktown

Knox and the artillery established a winter cantonment at Pluckemin
Pluckemin Continental Artillery Cantonment Site
The Pluckemin Artillery Cantonment Site in Pluckemin, New Jersey, a hamlet at the southern section of Bedminster Township, New Jersey, holds historic American Revolutionary War importance as the Continental Army's artillery winter cantonment during the winter of 1778-1779. Nestled on the western...

 (a hamlet of Bedminster
Bedminster Township, New Jersey
Bedminster Township is a Township in Somerset County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township population was 8,165....

, New Jersey). There Knox established the Continental Army's first school for artillery and officer training. This facility is considered the precursor to the United States Military Academy
United States Military Academy
The United States Military Academy at West Point is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located at West Point, New York. The academy sits on scenic high ground overlooking the Hudson River, north of New York City...

 at West Point, New York
West Point, New York
West Point is a federal military reservation established by President of the United States Thomas Jefferson in 1802. It is a census-designated place located in Town of Highlands in Orange County, New York, United States. The population was 7,138 at the 2000 census...

. While there, through the summer of 1779, General Knox spent most of his time training more than 1,000 soldiers in conditions of low morale and scarce supplies. Conditions were exceptionally harsh in the winter of 1779–80, and Washington's army was again largely inactive in 1780 while the main action in the war moved south
Southern theater of the American Revolutionary War
The Southern theater of the American Revolutionary War was the central area of operations in North America in the second half of the American Revolutionary War. During the first three years of the conflict, the primary military encounters had been in the north, focused on campaigns around the...

.

In late September 1780 Knox was a member of the court martial that convicted Major John André
John André
John André was a British army officer hanged as a spy during the American War of Independence. This was due to an incident in which he attempted to assist Benedict Arnold's attempted surrender of the fort at West Point, New York to the British.-Early life:André was born on May 2, 1750 in London to...

, the British officer whose arrest exposed the treachery of Benedict Arnold. (Knox had, in an interesting twist, briefly shared accommodations with André while en route to Ticonderoga in 1775, when the latter was traveling south on parole after being captured near Montreal.) During these years of relative inaction Knox made several trips to the northern states as Washington's representative to increase the flow of men and supplies to the army. In 1781 Knox accompanied Washington's army south and participated in the decisive Siege of Yorktown
Siege of Yorktown
The Siege of Yorktown, Battle of Yorktown, or Surrender of Yorktown in 1781 was a decisive victory by a combined assault of American forces led by General George Washington and French forces led by the Comte de Rochambeau over a British Army commanded by Lieutenant General Lord Cornwallis...

. He was personally active in the field, directing the placement and aiming of the artillery. The Marquis de Chastellux
François-Jean de Chastellux
François Jean de Beauvoir, Marquis de Chastellux, was a military officer who served during the War of American Independence as a major general in the French expeditionary forces led by general Comte de Rochambeau...

, with whom Knox established a good friendship, wrote of Knox, "We cannot sufficiently admire the intelligence and activity with which he collected from different places and transported to the batteries more than thirty pieces ...", and "one-half has been said in commending his military genius. Washington specifically called out both Knox and the French artillery chief for their roles in the siege, and recommended to Congress that Knox be promoted.

Demobilization

Knox was promoted to major general on March 22, 1782; he became the army's youngest major general. He and Congressman Gouverneur Morris
Gouverneur Morris
Gouverneur Morris , was an American statesman, a Founding Father of the United States, and a native of New York City who represented Pennsylvania in the Constitutional Convention of 1787. He was a signatory to the Articles of Confederation. Morris was also an author of large sections of the...

 were assigned to negotiate prisoner exchanges with the British. These negotiations failed because the sides could not agree on processes and terms for matching various classes of captives. He joined the main army at Newburgh, New York, and inspected the facilities at West Point, considered a crucial defensive position. After enumerating its defects and needs, Washington appointed him its commander in August 1782. The next month he was devastated by the death of his nine-month-old son, and fell into a depression. He soldiered on, however, becoming involved in negotiations with the Confederation Congress and Secretary at War
United States Secretary of War
The Secretary of War was a member of the United States President's Cabinet, beginning with George Washington's administration. A similar position, called either "Secretary at War" or "Secretary of War," was appointed to serve the Congress of the Confederation under the Articles of Confederation...

 Benjamin Lincoln over the issue of pensions and overdue compensation for the military. Knox wrote a memorial, signed by a number of high-profile officers, suggesting that Congress pay all back pay immediately and offer a lump-sum pension rather than providing half-pay for life. The unwillingness of Congress to deal with the issue prompted Knox to write a warning letter, in which he wrote "I consider the reputation of the American army as one of the most immaculate things on earth, and that we should even suffer wrongs and injuries to the utmost verge of toleration rather than sully it in the least degree. But there is a point beyond which there is no sufferance. I pray we will sincerely not pass it." When rumors of mutiny
Newburgh conspiracy
The Newburgh Conspiracy was unrest in 1783 among officers of the American Continental Army due to many officers and men of the Army not receiving pay for many years. Commander-in-Chief George Washington stopped any serious talk by appealing successfully to his officers to support the supremacy of...

 in the higher rank circulated in March 1783, Washington held a meeting in which he made an impassioned plea for restraint. In the meeting, Knox introduced motions reaffirming the officers' attachment to Washington and Congress, helping to defuse the crisis. Because of the unresolved issues, however, Knox and others became vigorous proponents of a stronger national government, something which leading political leaders (including Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson was the principal author of the United States Declaration of Independence and the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom , the third President of the United States and founder of the University of Virginia...

, John Hancock
John Hancock
John Hancock was a merchant, statesman, and prominent Patriot of the American Revolution. He served as president of the Second Continental Congress and was the first and third Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts...

, and Samuel Adams
Samuel Adams
Samuel Adams was an American statesman, political philosopher, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. As a politician in colonial Massachusetts, Adams was a leader of the movement that became the American Revolution, and was one of the architects of the principles of American...

) opposed at the time.

With the arrival of news of a preliminary peace in April 1783 Congress began to order the demobilization of the army, and Washington gave Knox day-to-day command of what remained of the army. During this time Knox organized the Society of the Cincinnati
Society of the Cincinnati
The Society of the Cincinnati is a historical organization with branches in the United States and France founded in 1783 to preserve the ideals and fellowship of the American Revolutionary War officers and to pressure the government to honor pledges it had made to officers who fought for American...

, a hereditary fraternity of Revolutionary War officers that survives to this day. The hereditary nature of its membership raised some eyebrows, but it was generally well received. He also drafted plans for the establishment of a peacetime army, many of whose provisions were eventually implemented. These plans included two military academies (one naval and one army, the latter occupying the critical base at West Point), and bodies of troops to maintain the nation's borders.

When the British withdrew the last of their troops from New York on November 21, 1783, Knox was at the head of the American forces that took over. He stood next to Washington during the latter's farewell address on December 4 at Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern
Fraunces Tavern is a tavern, restaurant and museum housed in a conjectural reconstruction of a building that played a prominent role in pre-Revolution and American Revolution history. The building, located at 54 Pearl Street at the corner of Broad Street, has been owned by Sons of the Revolution in...

. After Washington retired, Knox became the senior officer of the army.

The post of Secretary at War
United States Secretary of War
The Secretary of War was a member of the United States President's Cabinet, beginning with George Washington's administration. A similar position, called either "Secretary at War" or "Secretary of War," was appointed to serve the Congress of the Confederation under the Articles of Confederation...

 became available when Benjamin Lincoln resigned in November 1783, and Lincoln had recommended Knox to follow him. Although the Confederation Congress had been aware of Lincoln's intent to resign when the formal peace arrived, it had not named a successor. Knox had been considered for the job when it was given to Lincoln in 1781, and expressed his interest in succeeding Lincoln. However, in the absence of a guiding hand in the War Department, Congress attempted to implement an idea for a standing militia force as a peacetime army. Knox resigned his army commission in early 1784, "well satisfied to be excluded from any responsibility in arrangements which it is impossible to execute", and Congress' idea failed.

Knox returned to Massachusetts, where the family established a home in Dorchester. Knox worked to reassemble a large parcel of land in Maine (parts of what are sometimes called the Waldo Patent
Waldo Patent
The Waldo Patent, a letters patent also known as the Muscongus Patent or the Lincolnshire Patent, was an area of land 36 miles square in what is now the U.S...

 and the Bingham Purchase
Bingham Purchase
The Bingham Purchase refers to several tracts of land in the U.S. state of Maine, formerly owned by William Bingham.These lands were granted to early colonizers in the 1630s, and became part of the larger Waldo Patent, named after Samuel Waldo, who acquired the land grants in 1720...

) that had been confiscated from his Loyalist in-laws. He was able to assemble a vast multi-million acre real estate empire Maine, including almost all of the old Flucker holdings, in part by getting appointed the state's official for disposing of seized lands, and then rigging the sale of his in-laws' lands to a straw buyer acting on his behalf. He was also appointed to a state commission responsible for negotiating treaty provisions with the Penobscot Indians of central Maine. This commission also became involved in investigating issues surrounding the eastern border with Nova Scotia
Nova Scotia
Nova Scotia is one of Canada's three Maritime provinces and is the most populous province in Atlantic Canada. The name of the province is Latin for "New Scotland," but "Nova Scotia" is the recognized, English-language name of the province. The provincial capital is Halifax. Nova Scotia is the...

 (now New Brunswick
New Brunswick
New Brunswick is one of Canada's three Maritime provinces and is the only province in the federation that is constitutionally bilingual . The provincial capital is Fredericton and Saint John is the most populous city. Greater Moncton is the largest Census Metropolitan Area...

), a matter that would not be resolved until the 1842 Webster-Ashburton Treaty
Webster-Ashburton Treaty
The Webster–Ashburton Treaty, signed August 9, 1842, was a treaty resolving several border issues between the United States and the British North American colonies...

.

Secretary of War

Congress finally appointed Knox the nation's second Secretary at War on March 8, 1785, after considering a number of other candidates. The army was by then a fraction of its former size, and the new nation's westward expansion was exacerbating frontier conflicts with Indian tribes. The War Department Knox took over had two civilian employees and a single small regiment
3rd US Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard)
The 3rd United States Infantry Regiment is a regiment of the US Army. It currently has three active battalions, and is readily identified by its nickname, The Old Guard, as well as Escort to the President. The regimental motto is Noli Me Tangere...

. Congress in 1785 authorized the establishment of a 700 man army. Knox was only able to recruit six of the authorized ten companies, which were stationed on the western frontier.

Some members of the Confederation Congress opposed the establishment of a peacetime army, and also opposed the establishment of a military academy (one of Knox's key proposals) on the basis that it would establish an egalitarian military class capable of dominating society. Knox first proposed an army mainly composed of state militia, specifically seeking to change attitudes in Congress about a democratically managed military. Although the plan was initially rejected, many of its details were eventually adopted in the formation and administration of the United States Army. The need for an enhanced military role took on some urgency in 1786 when Shays' Rebellion
Shays' Rebellion
Shays' Rebellion was an armed uprising in central and western Massachusetts from 1786 to 1787. The rebellion is named after Daniel Shays, a veteran of the American Revolutionary War....

 broke out in Massachusetts, threatening the Springfield Armory. Knox personally went to Springfield to see to its defense. Although Benjamin Lincoln raised a militia force and put down the rebellion, it highlighted the weakness of both the military and defects in the Articles of Confederation
Articles of Confederation
The Articles of Confederation, formally the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, was an agreement among the 13 founding states that legally established the United States of America as a confederation of sovereign states and served as its first constitution...

 that hampered Congressional ability to act on the matter. In the rebellion's aftermath Congress called what became known as the Constitutional Convention, in which the current United States Constitution
United States Constitution
The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the United States of America. It is the framework for the organization of the United States government and for the relationship of the federal government with the states, citizens, and all people within the United States.The first three...

 was drafted. Knox in early 1787 sent George Washington a draft proposal for a government that bears significant resemblance to what was eventually adopted. When Washington asked Knox if he should attend the convention, Knox urged him to do so: "It would be circumstance highly honorable to your fame, in the judgment of the present and future ages, and double entitle you to the glorious epithet — Father of Your Country." This is possibly the earliest documented application of the phrase "Father of His Country
Father of the Nation
Father of the Nation is an honorific title given to a man considered the driving force behind the establishment of their country, state or nation...

" to Washington. Knox actively promoted the adoption of the new constitution, engaging correspondents in many colonies on the subject, but especially concentrating on achieving its adoption by Massachusetts, where its support was seen as weak. After its adoption he was considered by some to be a viable candidate for vice president
Vice President of the United States
The Vice President of the United States is the holder of a public office created by the United States Constitution. The Vice President, together with the President of the United States, is indirectly elected by the people, through the Electoral College, to a four-year term...

, but he preferred to remain the war office, and the office went to John Adams
John Adams
John Adams was an American lawyer, statesman, diplomat and political theorist. A leading champion of independence in 1776, he was the second President of the United States...

. With the adoption of the new constitution and the establishment of the War Department
United States Department of War
The United States Department of War, also called the War Department , was the United States Cabinet department originally responsible for the operation and maintenance of the United States Army...

, Knox's title changed to Secretary of War.

As part of his duties as Secretary of War, Knox was responsible for implementation of the Militia Act of 1792
Militia Act of 1792
The Militia Act of 1792 was a series of statutes enacted by the second United States Congress in 1792. The act provided for the President of the United States to take command of the state militias in times of imminent invasion or insurrection.-History:...

. This included his evaluation of the arms and readiness of the militia
Militia (United States)
The role of militia, also known as military service and duty, in the United States is complex and has transformed over time.Spitzer, Robert J.: The Politics of Gun Control, Page 36. Chatham House Publishers, Inc., 1995. " The term militia can be used to describe any number of groups within the...

 finding that only 20% of the 450,000 members of the militia were capable of arming themselves at their own expense for militia service as required by the act. To resolve this arms shortage, Knox recommended to Congress that the federal government increase the purchase of imported weapons, ban the export of domestically produced weapons and establish facilities for the domestic production and stockpiling of weapons. These facilities included the existing Springfield Armory and another at Harpers Ferry, Virginia
Harpers Ferry Armory
Harpers Ferry Armory, more formally known as the United States Armory and Arsenal at Harpers Ferry, was the second federal armory commissioned by the United States government located in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia , the first federal armory being the Springfield Armory located in Springfield,...

. In 1792 Congress, acting on a detailed proposal from Knox, created the short-lived Legion of the United States
Legion of the United States
The Legion of the United States was a reorganization and extension of the United States Army from 1792 to 1796 under the command of Major General Anthony Wayne.-Origins:The impetus for the Legion came from General Arthur St...

.

When the French Revolutionary Wars
French Revolutionary Wars
The French Revolutionary Wars were a series of major conflicts, from 1792 until 1802, fought between the French Revolutionary government and several European states...

 broke out in 1793, American merchant shipping began to be affected after Washington formally declared neutrality in the conflict
Proclamation of Neutrality
The Proclamation of Neutrality was a formal announcement issued by United States President George Washington on April 22, 1793, declaring the nation neutral in the conflict between France and Great Britain. It threatened legal proceedings against any American providing assistance to any country at...

. Both France and Britain began interfering with American shipping. Most of the Continental Navy's few ships were sold off at the end of the revolutionary war, leaving the nation's merchant fleet without any defenses against piracy or seizure on the high seas.
Knox urged and presided over the creation of a regular United States Navy
United States Navy
The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. The U.S. Navy is the largest in the world; its battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S...

 and the establishment of a series of coastal fortifications.

Indian diplomacy and war

Knox was responsible for managing the nation's relations with the Native Americans resident in lands it claimed, following a 1789 act of U.S. Congress. Knox, in several documents drafted for Washington and Congress, articulated the nation's early Indian policy. He stated that Indian nations were sovereign and possessed the land they occupied, and that the federal government (and not the states) should therefore be responsible for dealings with them. These policies were implemented in part by the passage of the Indian Trade and Intercourse Act of 1790, which forbade the sale of Indian lands except in connection with a treaty with the federal government.
Indian wars, including the Chickamauga Wars (1776–1794) and the Northwest Indian War
Northwest Indian War
The Northwest Indian War , also known as Little Turtle's War and by various other names, was a war fought between the United States and a confederation of numerous American Indian tribes for control of the Northwest Territory...

, would occupy much of his tenure. During the years of the Confederation, there had been insufficient Congressional support for any significant action against the tribes on the western frontier. The British supported the northwestern tribes from frontier bases that they continued to occupy after the Revolutionary War ended (in violation of the Treaty of Paris), and the Cherokee
Cherokee
The Cherokee are a Native American people historically settled in the Southeastern United States . Linguistically, they are part of the Iroquoian language family...

 and Creek
Creek people
The Muscogee , also known as the Creek or Creeks, are a Native American people traditionally from the southeastern United States. Mvskoke is their name in traditional spelling. The modern Muscogee live primarily in Oklahoma, Alabama, Georgia, and Florida...

 continued to to contest illegal encroachment of colonial settlers on their lands. In October 1790 Knox organized a campaign
Harmar Campaign
The Harmar Campaign was an attempt by the United States to subdue Native Americans in the Northwest Territory in the Autumn of 1790. It was led by General Josiah Harmar and was part of the Northwest Indian War...

 led by General Josiah Harmar
Josiah Harmar
Josiah Harmar was an officer in the United States Army during the American Revolution and the Northwest Indian War. He was the senior officer in the Army for seven years....

 into the Northwest Territory
Northwest Territory
The Territory Northwest of the River Ohio, more commonly known as the Northwest Territory, was an organized incorporated territory of the United States that existed from July 13, 1787, until March 1, 1803, when the southeastern portion of the territory was admitted to the Union as the state of Ohio...

 in retaliation for Indian raids against colonial settlers in that territory and that of present-day Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

. That campaign, and a second one in 1791 led by territorial Governor Arthur St. Clair
Arthur St. Clair
Arthur St. Clair was an American soldier and politician. Born in Scotland, he served in the British Army during the French and Indian War before settling in Pennsylvania, where he held local office...

, both failed in the objective of pacifying the Indians, and Knox was widely blamed for the failure to protect the frontier. Seeking to close the issue before he left office, he organized an expedition led by Anthony Wayne
Anthony Wayne
Anthony Wayne was a United States Army general and statesman. Wayne adopted a military career at the outset of the American Revolutionary War, where his military exploits and fiery personality quickly earned him a promotion to the rank of brigadier general and the sobriquet of Mad Anthony.-Early...

 that brought the conflict to a meaningful end with the 1794 Battle of Fallen Timbers
Battle of Fallen Timbers
The Battle of Fallen Timbers was the final battle of the Northwest Indian War, a struggle between American Indian tribes affiliated with the Western Confederacy and the United States for control of the Northwest Territory...

.

Although he idealistically sought to "civilize" the Cherokee and Creek, he was enough of a realist to recognize that this was unlikely to happen. He instead at first recommended a continuation of British policies, furnishing the Indians with livestock, farming implements, and missionaries, in order to pacify them. After failing to appease the Cherokee and Creek with large cache of gifts in 1789, Knox eventually signed the Treaty of New York
Treaty of New York
The Treaty of New York is one of several treaties signed between the United States and Native American tribes, conducted in the city of New York.-1790:...

 on behalf of the nation in 1790, ending conflict with some, but not all, Cherokee tribal units. Knox wrote that the United States had not treated its Indians fairly, noting that "[i]t was unfortunate that the United States did not treat the murderers of Indians with the same severity as the murderers of whites". Of the virtual elimination of Indian populations in the nation's most heavily populated areas, Knox wrote, "A future historian may mark the causes of this destruction of the human race in sable colors."

On January 2, 1795, Knox left the government and returned to his home at Thomaston
Thomaston, Maine
Thomaston, Maine is a town on the coast of Maine the United States. The name may also refer to:*Thomaston , Maine, a census-designated place comprising the center of the town*South Thomaston, Maine, an adjacent town...

 (now in Maine
Maine
Maine is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States, bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the east and south, New Hampshire to the west, and the Canadian provinces of Quebec to the northwest and New Brunswick to the northeast. Maine is both the northernmost and easternmost...

, but then still a part of Massachusetts), to devote himself to caring for his growing family. He was succeeded in the post of Secretary of War by Timothy Pickering
Timothy Pickering
Timothy Pickering was a politician from Massachusetts who served in a variety of roles, most notably as the third United States Secretary of State, serving in that office from 1795 to 1800 under Presidents George Washington and John Adams.-Early years:Pickering was born in Salem, Massachusetts to...

.

Business ventures and land speculation

Knox settled at Montpelier, the estate he built in Thomaston. He spent the rest of his life engaged in cattle farming, ship building, brick making and real estate speculation. Connections formed during the war years served Knox well, as he invested widely in frontier real estate, from the Ohio valley to Maine (although his largest holdings by far were those in Maine). Although he claimed to treat settlers on his Maine lands fairly, he used intermediaries to evict those who did not pay their rents or squatted on the land. These tactics upset those settlers to the point where they once threatened to burn Montpelier down. One of the people Knox took land from was Joseph Plumb Martin
Joseph Plumb Martin
Joseph Plumb Martin was an American Revolutionary War soldier who published an account of his experiences as a soldier in the 8th Connecticut Regiment of the Continental Army in 1830.-Life:...

, a soldier who settled in Maine and wrote a memoir of his war experiences. Knox briefly represented Thomaston in the Massachusetts General Court
Massachusetts General Court
The Massachusetts General Court is the state legislature of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The name "General Court" is a hold-over from the Colonial Era, when this body also sat in judgment of judicial appeals cases...

, but he eventually became so unpopular that he lost the seat to a local blacksmith.

Knox was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
American Academy of Arts and Sciences
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences is an independent policy research center that conducts multidisciplinary studies of complex and emerging problems. The Academy’s elected members are leaders in the academic disciplines, the arts, business, and public affairs.James Bowdoin, John Adams, and...

 in 1805.
As well as building a landed estate, Knox attempted to enlarge his fortune through industrial craft enterprises. He had interests in lumbering, ship building, stock raising and brick manufacturing. Unfortunately for him, these businesses failed (due in part to a lack of focused investment), and Knox built up significant debts. Knox was forced to sell large tracts of land in Maine to satisfy some of his creditors. The purchaser of his Maine lands was a Pennsylvania banker named William Bingham
William Bingham
William Bingham was an American statesman from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was a delegate for Pennsylvania to the Continental Congress from 1786 to 1788 and served in the United States Senate from 1795 to 1801...

, leading those tracts to become known locally as the Bingham Purchase
Bingham Purchase
The Bingham Purchase refers to several tracts of land in the U.S. state of Maine, formerly owned by William Bingham.These lands were granted to early colonizers in the 1630s, and became part of the larger Waldo Patent, named after Samuel Waldo, who acquired the land grants in 1720...

.

Death

In 1806 while visiting a friend Knox swallowed a chicken bone, which lodged in his throat and became infected. He died at home three days later, on October 25, 1806, and was buried on his estate in Thomaston with full military honors.

Lucy died in 1824, having sold off more portions of the family properties to pay the creditors of Knox's insolvent estate. The couple had 13 children although only one son, Henry Jackson Knox, survived to adulthood, and he was known for his drinking and scandalous behavior. Montpelier remained in the family until it was demolished in 1871 to make way for the Brunswick-Rockland railroad line. The only surviving structure is an outbuilding that currently houses the Thomaston Historical Society. The current Montpelier Museum is a 20th century reconstruction not far from the original's site.

Many incidents in Knox's career attest to his character, both good and bad. As one example, when he and Lucy were forced to leave Boston in 1775, his home was used to house British officers who looted his bookstore. In spite of personal financial hardships, he managed to make the last payment of £1,000 to Longman Printers
Longman
Longman was a publishing company founded in London, England in 1724. It is now an imprint of Pearson Education.-Beginnings:The Longman company was founded by Thomas Longman , the son of Ezekiel Longman , a gentleman of Bristol. Thomas was apprenticed in 1716 to John Osborn, a London bookseller, and...

 in London to cover the price of a shipment of books that he never received. In Maine, however, he would be remembered as a grasping tyrant and was forever immortalized in Nathanial Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables
The House of the Seven Gables
The House of the Seven Gables is a 1668 colonial mansion in Salem, Massachusetts, USA. The house is now a non-profit museum, with an admission fee charged for tours, as well as an active settlement house with programs for children...

, for which he served as the model for Col. Pynchon.

Honors

Towns and cities in Maine
Knox, Maine
Knox is a town in Waldo County, Maine, United States. The town was named for General Henry Knox, the first United States Secretary of War. The population was 747 at the 2000 census.-Geography:...

, Indiana
Knox, Indiana
Knox is a city in Center Township, Starke County, Indiana, United States. The population was 3,704 at the 2010 census. Knox is also within the Chicago Metropolitan Area along with the City of Valparaiso. The city is the county seat of Starke County. The city was founded in 1851 and is named after...

, Iowa
Knoxville, Iowa
Knoxville is a city in Marion County, Iowa, United States. The population was 7,731 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Marion County. Knoxville is home of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum located next to the famous dirt track known as Knoxville Raceway.-History:The site for...

, and Tennessee
Knoxville, Tennessee
Founded in 1786, Knoxville is the third-largest city in the U.S. state of Tennessee, U.S.A., behind Memphis and Nashville, and is the county seat of Knox County. It is the largest city in East Tennessee, and the second-largest city in the Appalachia region...

 are named in his honor. There are counties
County (United States)
In the United States, a county is a geographic subdivision of a state , usually assigned some governmental authority. The term "county" is used in 48 of the 50 states; Louisiana is divided into parishes and Alaska into boroughs. Parishes and boroughs are called "county-equivalents" by the U.S...

 named for Knox in Illinois
Knox County, Illinois
Knox County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. According to the 2010 census, it has a population of 52,919, which is a decrease of 5.2% from 55,836 in 2000...

, Indiana
Knox County, Indiana
As of the census of 2000, there were 39,256 people, 15,552 households, and 10,139 families residing in the county. The population density was 76 people per square mile . There were 17,305 housing units at an average density of 34 per square mile...

, Kentucky
Knox County, Kentucky
Knox County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of 2000, the population was 31,795. Its county seat is Barbourville. The county is named for General Henry Knox...

, Maine
Knox County, Maine
Knox County is a county located in the U.S. state of Maine. As of 2010, the population was 39,736. Its county seat is Rockland. The county is named for American Revolutionary War general and Secretary of War Henry Knox, who lived in the county from 1795 until his death in 1806. The county was...

, Missouri
Knox County, Missouri
As of the census of 2010, there are 4,131 people in the county, organized into 1,791 households and 1,217 families. The population density is 9 people per square mile . There are 2,317 housing units at an average density of 5 per square mile...

, Nebraska
Knox County, Nebraska
-History:The Lewis and Clark Expedition passed through the area on 4 September 1804.The US Treaty with the Ponca tribe was signed at White Paint Creek on 9 June 1825.Knox County was formed in 1854. It was named after Major General Henry Knox.-Demographics:...

, Ohio
Knox County, Ohio
Knox County is a county located in the state of Ohio, United States. As of 2010, the population was 60,921. Its county seat is Mount Vernon and is named for Henry Knox, an officer in the American Revolutionary War who was later the first Secretary of War....

, Tennessee
Knox County, Tennessee
Knox County is a county in the U.S. state of Tennessee. Its 2007 population was estimated at 423,874 by the United States Census Bureau. Its county seat is Knoxville, as it has been since the creation of the county. The county is at the geographical center of the Great Valley of East Tennessee...

 and Texas
Knox County, Texas
As of the census of 2000, there were 4,253 people, 1,690 households, and 1,166 families residing in the county. The population density was 5 people per square mile . There were 2,129 housing units at an average density of 2 per square mile...

. The house he used as a headquarters in New Windsor, New York
New Windsor, New York
New Windsor is a town in Orange County, New York, United States. The population was estimated at 25,244 in 2010 by the US Census.The Town of New Windsor is in the eastern part of the county, bordering the Town of Newburgh and the City of Newburgh....

 during the Revolution has been preserved as Knox's Headquarters State Historic Site
Knox's Headquarters State Historic Site
Knox's Headquarters State Historic Site, in the town of New Windsor in Orange County, New York, consists of the Georgian house of the Ellison family, built in 1754, and the grounds around it. It is located on Old Forge Hill Road, just south of Route 94 east of Vails Gate...

, and has been declared a National Historic Landmark
National Historic Landmark
A National Historic Landmark is a building, site, structure, object, or district, that is officially recognized by the United States government for its historical significance...

.

Knox has been honored by the United States Postal Service
United States Postal Service
The United States Postal Service is an independent agency of the United States government responsible for providing postal service in the United States...

 with an 8¢ Great Americans series
Great Americans series
The Great Americans series is a set of definitive stamps issued by the United States Postal Service, starting on December 27, 1980 with the 19¢ stamp depicting Sequoyah, and continuing through 2002, the final stamp being the 78¢ Alice Paul self-adhesive stamp. The series, noted for its simplicity...

 postage stamp
Postage stamp
A postage stamp is a small piece of paper that is purchased and displayed on an item of mail as evidence of payment of postage. Typically, stamps are made from special paper, with a national designation and denomination on the face, and a gum adhesive on the reverse side...

.

Two forts, one in Kentucky
Fort Knox
Fort Knox is a United States Army post in Kentucky south of Louisville and north of Elizabethtown. The base covers parts of Bullitt, Hardin, and Meade counties. It currently holds the Army Human Resources Center of Excellence to include the Army Human Resources Command, United States Army Cadet...

 and another in Maine were named after him. Knox Hall at Fort Sill
Fort Sill
Fort Sill is a United States Army post near Lawton, Oklahoma, about 85 miles southwest of Oklahoma City.Today, Fort Sill remains the only active Army installation of all the forts on the South Plains built during the Indian Wars...

, Oklahoma
Oklahoma
Oklahoma is a state located in the South Central region of the United States of America. With an estimated 3,751,351 residents as of the 2010 census and a land area of 68,667 square miles , Oklahoma is the 28th most populous and 20th-largest state...

, home of the United States Army Field Artillery School
United States Army Field Artillery School
The United States Army Field Artillery School trains Field Artillery Soldiers and Marines in tactics, techniques, and procedures for the employment of fire support systems in support of the maneuver commander...

, is named in his honor, as is an annual award recognizing the performance of United States artillery batteries. The Major General Nathanael Greene class large coastal tug USAV Major General Henry Knox (LT-802)
MGen. Nathanael Greene class large coastal tugs
The MGen. Nathanael Greene class large coastal tug are powered watercraft in the United States Army. They are a new class of large tugs built for US Army service, primarily intended to assist in docking of transports. -Ships:...

 is named in honor of Knox. His papers have been preserved at the Massachusetts Historical Society
Massachusetts Historical Society
The Massachusetts Historical Society is a major historical archive specializing in early American, Massachusetts, and New England history...

.

External links

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