Orange County Historian Johanna Porr Yaun has been named chair of the Orange County Semiquincentennial Commission and is accepting applications to fill a dozen positions within the group.
Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus signed an Executive Order earlier this month tasking the Commission with commemorating the 250th anniversary of the Revolutionary War era, which lasted from 1775 to 1783. The Commission will be active from now until Nov. 25, 2033 to best highlight Orange County’s role throughout the war years.
Anyone interested in joining the Semiquincentennial Commission should send their résumé to Yaun at the 1841 Courthouse, 101 Main St., Goshen, NY 10924 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org. There will be 13 Commissioners in total and they will serve three-year terms.
Orange County and its neighboring communities played a critical role in the Revolutionary War. In 1775, the residents of Orange County recruited volunteers for the Orange and Ulster County militias and in 1777 they defended the Hudson Valley in the attacks on Forts Montgomery and Clinton.
In 1780, the garrison at West Point was promised to the British in an act of treason by General Benedict Arnold, who tried to exchange the post for money and a high position in the British Army. While headquartered in Newburgh in 1783, General George Washington issued the General Order for the cessation of hostilities, ending the war. These are just a few examples of the region’s significance throughout this era.
“The Hudson River Valley was at the center of patriot operations for much of the Revolutionary War and the 250th gives us a platform to talk about events that shaped the diplomacy, supply, recruitment and military campaigns during the war years.” stated Yaun.