Pulaski, unknown hero of the Revolution

Casimir Pulaski was hard core revolutionary that just didn’t know when to quit. Outnumbered, outgunned, it didn’t matter. He was like a vicious badger that would start biting the ankle of a grizzly.

Pulaski looking around for more butts to kick

This musket-era Rambo was born in Poland in 1745 where his father was a well known and liked noble. The problem was that Russia was sleeping on Poland’s couch, eating all their food and not going away. (It seems Russia has a bad habit of occupying Poland. Jerks.) Well, Pulaski didn’t like the Russians telling Poles what to do and said, I paraphrase here, “I’m sick of this Russian crap.” He gathered his Polish Noble buddies and formed a political party to oust the Ruskies. Well, the Russians didn’t really listen so Pulaski took up his musket and went on the war path. He launched a revolution against the Russians and was quite successful for a while until he found himself surrounded by an army much larger than his own.

Pulaski fighting off impossible odds. A habit of his.

Pulaski fought them off for a while but eventually even he had to succumb to overwhelming numbers and was captured. The Russians made him promise not to fight them again. He said, “Sure! No problemo!” and went home, grabbed another rifle from his gun safe and went back to fighting. He fought the Russians for a while and got besieged again in an old fortress, fought them off for a while but saw that it was doomed, so he burst out of the fortress like Shakespere saying “Let slip the dogs of war!” and broke through the Russian lines and led his men to safety. Then he found himself greatly outnumbered in yet another siege, but wait! This one’s different. Instead of an old fort, it was an old monastery. Oh, and he actually won this time! He beat the Russian horde and sent them packing.
Then our man Pulaski was accused of organizing a plot to kidnap the Polish king and slap him around a bit, but he didn’t really have anything to do with it. That didn’t stop them from declaring him public enemy #1. So, he, like generations of unwanted would do in the future, he fled to America.
He was recruited by Benjamin Franklin and Pulaski wrote to General Washington and said, “I came here, where freedom is being defended, to serve it, and to live or die for it.” Spoken like a true revolutionary! It seemed that he didn’t care where he was fighting as long as he could fight on the side of freedom, liberty and justice! If he had super powers he’d be a friggin’ super hero.
At the Battle of Brandywine the Revolutionary Army suffered a major defeat and was in retreat. Back in those days, retreating is when most casualties were incurred. So this was a dangerous situation for the Americans. Pulaski gathered what troops he could and led a daring cavalry charge that held off the British and saved Washington’s life. For this he was promoted to general. I guess if you save George Washington’s life you get to be a general. Fair trade. As a former cavalryman myself, I appreciate this story. Hooah for the Cav!

He been called the "Father of American Cavalry." Though there were signifacantly less sandstorms in the American Revolution.

He went on to win a bunch more battles, kept Washington from being ambushed and basically killed everything wearing red that he laid eyes on.
However, there was a problem. He knew enough English to call for a taxi, order pizza and as where the bathroom was. This and the fact that he wasn’t American, caused his lesser American officers to ignore him too often so he gave them the metaphorical middle finger and formed his own military unit made up of foreigners, criminals, deserters and killers. He fashioned a unit of light infantry and lancers after the European model. They went on to start kicking some serious British butt. When the Continental Congress stopped paying them he paid his troops with his own money. He lived up to the Revolution’s pledge of sacrificing their “Life, fortune and sacred honor.”
At one time a former German mercenary (Hessian) under his command told the British where he was hiding and the British went to ambush him, but Pulaski heard them coming with his eagle powers and counterattacked them with another daring charge.
Then the devil went down to Georgia and began his black powdered bliztkrieg against the British. He captured a fort or two, helped a few battles and became commander of all American and French cavalry. Then in a battle outside of Charleston South Carolina, he finally met his match, Due to having the Juggernaut perk, it took a direct shotgun blast to deplete his hit points. He was carried off the battle and died a few days later.
This man single handidly saved the revolution, sacrificed everything he had for the cause of freedom and founded the American tradition of fast attack.

Hard chargin' and hard hittin'. He died as he lived, charging into danger to make the world a better place.

Cities, towns and counties are named after him but this seems a pale reward for a man that served so boldly and faithfully. He is a man that should be remembered.


12 comments on “Pulaski, unknown hero of the Revolution

  1. cthulhu says:

    He isn’t forgotten by the Polish. The Polish soldiers I talked to in Iraq (awesome guys), still remembered him…in fact they made sure I remembered. All those people that make Polish army jokes are some of the most ignorant people i’ve ever met. The Polish have a LONG history of kicking butt. They were also the only country to defeat the Soviet Union in a straight up war.

  2. Glenda says:

    And the sad thing, is that too many of us don’t even know who he is, inspite of the fact that he has counties, and towns, named after him. We all have too many other important things, to learn about, other than history, where the true heroes, and inspiration dwell. This was an amazing man, and like so many of our fore fathers, they did give all, and sacrificed all, to make it a better place. Name one of our leaders today, who is willing to do that! I can name only one, Pres. Thomas S. Monson.

  3. Went I first read the title I thought Roman Polanski….my bad…. But in all seriousness the ethnic Germans (not the Hessians who fought with the British) who immigrated to the Colonies also helped train the Continental Army in the use of weapons. Example: Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben “one of the fathers of the Continental Army.”

  4. Paul Ballmann says:

    Detroit has a strong Polish community and General Pulaski has a statue in downtown Detroit, an elementary school named after him and part of US12 (Michigan Ave.) is known as Pulaski Memorial Highway. Hamtramack, home of many Poles, also has Kosciuszko Middle School named after Tadeusz Kościuszko.

  5. Sarah says:

    Very cool. Polish are some tough folk. 🙂 And you’re right, no one in VA knows why Pulaski county has that name. Probably ‘cuz we’re seriously lacking in Polish history and culture here compared to New England where Polonaise balls are still held for young Polish debutante’s. (Yes, I am still bitter that I didn’t get a snooty ball like my mom and her sister and all my cousins… :))

    • zacharyhill says:

      Who doesn’t want a snooty ball to come out in public? I know I do. Then you could take a turn about the room and demonstrate your accomplishments. Maybe I’ll bring in Jane Austin to discuss the benefits of balls held by the country gentry and compare it to this Polish Polonaise thing you speak of. (I think I hear my male readership preparing tomatoes to throw at me.)

      • Sarah says:

        Ha! I love Jane Austin. Although I just finished “Mansfield Park” and felt betrayed because I was denied the perfect, feel-good ending. It’ll be awhile before I am in the mood for a snooty ball, so take your time on that post.

  6. zacharyhill says:

    Well, I’m always in the mood to take a turn about the park. Let me know when you feel up for a high brow country ball!

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