"Sir, they are able, and by God they shall do it!"
-George Washington said this to Charles Lee when Lee doubted whether the Americans could beat the British.
The Battle of Monmouth occurred on June 28, 1778 in Monmouth, New Jersey.
General Washington sent Major General Lee to attack the British with a small portion of the army. After Lee's troops confused the British a bit, Washington was supposed to lead the main army from Valley Forge and join in the fighting. Lee didn't agree with General Washington's plan, so the troops were turned over to Marquis de Lafayette. Major General Lee found out and immediately demanded that he be put back in his position.
When given the word from General Washington, Lee took his troops to fight the advancing British. After several hours of fighting, Major General Lee called for a retreat because no one had spotted General Washington or the main army yet. When Lee and General Washington eventually ran into each other, Washington was very angry and cursed Major General Lee very furiously.
“[T]he harder the conflict, the greater the triumph.”
-George Washington said this to inspire his troops.
General Washington decided to attack the British, again, when encouraged by Marquis de Lafayette, Nathanael Greene, and Anthony Wayne. The fighting lasted all day until night fell. Washington saw campfires during the night, but in the morning realized that they were just a ruse. The British had escaped and headed to New York.
With the British gone, General Washington and his army claimed the Battle of Monmouth as a win for America. Washington was greatly praised for his bravery during the whole ordeal.
This battle is significant because it was one where George Washington had to exert leadership he was famous for. If Washington had just given up as Lee did and went back to Valley Forge, then the colonists would have lost that battle and the British would've had an easy trip to New York. A few of Washington's officers, including Lee, didn't think it was a good idea to attack the British. They doubted whether the colonists were actually that strong and willing. Washington was confronted by other men, including Marquis de Lafayette, that persuaded not to listen to Lee and his comrades but to go for it. If this hadn't happened then we wouldn't have fought the British which delayed their arrival in New York. This would've been a big loss, for the colonists, if Washington hadn't inspired his troops to fight. Instead, The Battle of Monmouth was a great win for the colonists and encouraged more people to fight for their rights.