Reblogging as I prepare for tomorrow night’s book launch. Thank you for ALL your service, Jacob Ritter.
He didn’t speak English when he joined General Washington’s army.
And by 1790, he was both a combat veteran and a torture survivor.
No wonder he became and stayed a Quaker.
A careful reading of his 1840 memoir (a smash in Quaker circles) yields both facts, but I confess I was too distracted by what I already knew was there: his account of becoming a conscientious objector during the Battle of Brandywine.
Now, after reading more carefully about his time as a prisoner of war in Philadelphia under cruel British Colonel Cunningham, I’m realizing that as a student of PTSD, I have a lot more to learn from him than I’d thought.
This summary of Ritter’s experience in that prison has the basics: “Historian Watson interviewed a survivor of the Walnut Street Jail some years after the War’s end. The veteran, Jacob Ritter, recalled that prisoners were fed nothing for…
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