Thomas Sully’s “Passage of the Delaware” (1819) masterfully and accurately captures a moment of supreme importance to the American Revolution. That moment came at 3 a.m. on Dec. 26, 1176.
After a disastrous defeat in New York, Gen. George Washington, with the remains of his rag-tag army, has fled south. There is talk of replacing him as commander of the Continental army. Congress has evacuated Philadelphia and moved to Baltimore. Thomas Paine, in camp with the troops, has penned the words “These are the times that try men’s souls.”