On August 27, 1776, the Battle of Long Island took place it was the first major battle of the American Revolutionary War. In terms of troop deployment and fighting, it was also the largest battle of the entire war.
It pitted General George Washington’s 9,500 men against British Major General Howe’s force of 32,000. The confrontation was a disaster for American fortunes in New York, the defeat at Long Island was the first in a string of reverses which culminated in the British capture of the city and surrounding area. Badly defeated, Washington was forced retreat across New Jersey that fall, finally escaping into Pennsylvania.
The defeat at Long Island cost Washington 312 killed, 1,407 wounded, and 1,186 captured. British losses were a relatively light 392 killed and wounded.