Connolly's Plot

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CONNOLLY'S PLOT. In 1775 John Connolly, a Loyalist officer who had lived at Fort Pitt (Pittsburgh) for some years and knew the frontier situation, proposed to John Murray, Lord Dunmore, that Connolly should en-roll a force of British troops and Indians at Detroit, capture Fort Pitt, march on Winchester, Virginia, and join Lord Dunmore in putting down the rebellion in Virginia. Dunmore and British general Thomas Gage both voiced support for the plan, whereupon Connolly set out for Detroit. George Washington had been warned, however, and sent word to the Maryland Committee of Safety. Connolly was captured on 20 November 1775 at Hagerstown, Maryland, and imprisoned in Philadelphia. Had it been successful, the plot might have caused western Indians to attack the frontier two years before they actually did.


Burton, Clarence Monroe. "John Connolly, a Tory of the Revolution." American Antiquarian Society Proceedings 20 (1911).

Nelson, William H. The American Tory. 1961. Reprint, Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1992.

Thwaites, R. G., and Louise P. Kellogg. The Revolution on the Upper Ohio, 1775–1777. 1908. Reprint, Salem, Mass.: Higginson Book Company, 1997.

Louise PhelpsKellogg/t. d.

See alsoDunmore's War ; Indians in the Revolution ; Loyalists .