Brigadier General Moses Hazen

Hazen, Moses. 1733-1803.

Moses Hazen was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts, and gained his first military experience as a member of the British army during the French and Indian War. He rose to the rank of lieutenant before being forced to retire in 1763 because of wounds received during the war. Hazen settled in Montreal, Canada, and became a well-known businessman.

At the outbreak of the American Revolution, Hazen again offered his services to the British army. The British gave him the task of scouting American movements along the Canada/New York border. He even tried to dispense false information to the American army by giving them overinflated numbers of the British troops in the area. When the Americans found out that he had provided them with false information, they had him arrested.

Hazen was freed during a British attack on American forces but this did not end his problems. The British promptly arrested him and accused him of being a double-agent. However, luck was with Hazen. He was freed from captivity a second time when the British abandoned Montreal during the American invasion. Hazen was, from this point on, a firm supporter of the American cause.

Hazen joined the American army while it was still in Canada. He was given the authority to raise a regiment of Canadians to serve in the American army. Hazen was only able to recruit 200 Canadians before leaving with the American army when it withdrew from Canada. Hazen and his Canadians joined George Washington's army and fought at the Battles of Brandywine and Germantown.

Hazen was promoted to brigadier general in 1781 and commanded a brigade in Lafayette's Division. He served with Lafayette throughout the 1781 operations in Virginia. Hazen left the army in 1783. He settled in Troy, New York, and promptly returned to the life of a businessman.

Last updated: February 26, 2015

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