Maj. Gen. Henry Knox

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Maj. Gen. Henry Knox

Birthplace: Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, United States
Death: October 25, 1806 (56)
Thomaston, ME, USA
Place of Burial: Elm Grove Cemetery Thomaston Knox County Maine, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of William Knox and Mary Knox
Husband of Lucy Knox
Father of Lucy Flucker Thatcher; Julia Wadsworth Knox; Caroline Flucker Holmes; Henry Jackson Knox; H. Augusta Knox and 2 others
Brother of William Knox and Jane Dolloff

Occupation: Revolutionary general & first U.S. Secretary of War, Maj General in the Continental Army, 1st US Secretary of War, USA
Managed by: R. Owen Wyant
Last Updated:

About Maj. Gen. Henry Knox

A Patriot of the American Revolution for MASSACHUSETTS with the rank of MAJOR GENERAL. Ancestor #: A067057

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Henry Knox

1st United States Secretary of War

In office

March 8, 1785 – December 31, 1794

President George Washington

Succeeded by Timothy Pickering

Born July 25, 1750(1750-07-25)

Boston, Massachusetts, British America

Died October 25, 1806(1806-10-25) (aged 56)

near Thomaston, Maine, U.S.

Nationality British (at birth)

American (at death)

Spouse(s) Lucy Flucker

Profession Bookseller, Soldier


Military service

Allegiance United States of America

Service/branch Continental Army

United States Army

Years of service 1772-1784

Rank US-O6 insignia.svg Colonel 1775-1776

US-O7 insignia.svg Brigadier General 1776-1781

US-O8 insignia.svg Major General 1781-1784

Commands Chief of Artillery

Battles/wars American Revolutionary War

Battle of Bunker Hill

Siege of Boston

Battle of Long Island

Battle of Trenton

Battle of the Assunpink Creek

Battle of Princeton

Battle of Brandywine

Battle of Germantown

Battle of Monmouth

Siege of Yorktown

Henry Knox (July 25, 1750 – October 25, 1806) was a military officer of the Continental Army and later the United States Army, and also served as the first United States Secretary of War.

Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, he owned and operated a bookstore there, cultivating an interest in military history and joining a local artillery company. When the American Revolutionary War broke out in 1775, he befriended General George Washington, and quickly rose to become the chief artillery officer of the Continental Army. In this role he accompanied Washington on most of his campaigns, and had some involvement in many major actions of the war. He established training centers for artillerymen and manufacturing facilities for weaponry that were valuable assets to the fledgling nation.

Following the adoption of the United States Constitution, he became President Washington's Secretary of War. In this role he oversaw the development of coastal fortifications, worked to improve the preparedness of local militia, and oversaw the nation's military activity in the Northwest Indian War. He was formally responsible for the nation's relationship with the Indian population in the territories it claimed, at one point arguing that the country could take by force lands that Indian tribes were unwilling to sell.

He retired to what is now Thomaston, Maine in 1795, where he oversaw the rise of a business empire built on borrowed money. He died in 1806 from an infection received after swallowing a chicken bone, leaving an estate that was virtually bankrupt.

Watchtide was once the home of General Knox. The original colonial cape home on the Watchtide site was built in the early 1790's by a group of six colonial craftsmen -- carpenters, joiners, masons, painters -- who are said to have built nearly all the 18th century homes that remain in what is now Searsport, Maine. At the time the town was called Prospect and was part of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

In August, 1794, the property was deeded to Brigadier General Henry Knox, one of George Washington's most reliable senior officers who later became the new nation's first Secretary of War.  A former bookseller, Knox married his wife, Lucy Flucker, in the early years of the Revolutionary conflict.  Her parents were staunch British loyalists who disapproved of the marriage and returned to England as the Revolution progressed, never to see their daughter again.


Knox County, Ohio was named for Henry Knox.

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Maj. Gen. Henry Knox's Timeline

July 25, 1750
Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, United States
Age 25
March 1779
Age 28
October 25, 1806
Age 56
Thomaston, ME, USA