Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Molly, Captain

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MOLLY, Captain, b. about 1756; d. near West Point, N. Y., about 1789. She was the wife of a cannonier, and was at Fort Clinton when it was captured by the British in October, 1777. As the enemy scaled the parapet, her husband dropped his port-fire and fled, but Molly caught it up and discharged the last gun fired by the Americans on that occasion. She was also conspicuous at the battle of Monmouth, 28 June, 1778, where she carried water from a neighboring spring to her husband while he was serving a gun. A shot killed him at his post, and Molly seized the rammer and filled his place at the gun. After the battle, covered with dirt and blood, she was presented by Gen. Nathanael Greene to Washington, who commended her bravery and made her a sergeant. On his recommendation her name was placed upon the list of half-pay officers for life. She continued with the army, and after the war resided at Buttermilk Falls, N. Y. Mrs. Alexander Hamilton describes her as “a stout, red-haired, freckle-faced young Irish woman, with a handsome, piercing eye.” She was a favorite with the army, and generally wore an artilleryman's coat over her dress and a cocked hat. Captain Molly has been erroneously called Moll Pitcher.