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Elizabeth Burgin

Elizabeth Burgin helped people escape from prison. For this she should be hanged? Right? She also smuggled in food, she conspired with enemy officers - officers in the Revolutionary Army, no less. There was a price on her head! Okay, what did she really do, or, rather how?

Well, you see, there were prison ships in New York harbor during the Revolutionary War. Ships were cheaper than building prisons on land. Elizabeth visited these prisoners as often as she could, bringing food and cheer to these lifeless souls. Oh, how she wished she could do more for them. One day, a Patriot officer asked for her help in planning an escape. She brought the men information about the planned escape, assisting in the escape of over 200 prisoners. For her effort, she had to take flight from the British, who were not too happy about what she had done. She, herself, escaped to New England, destitute and friendless, but proud of what she had done. In 1781, Congress awarded her a pension, citing her service to Patriot soldiers in the Revolutionary War.