General Sullivan arrived at Easton, Pa. on May 7th, 1779, established his headquarters and began active preparations for the expedition. While waiting for the army to assemble, he sent two regiments ahead to make a road to Wyoming by widening a bridle path.
On June 18 Sullivan gave the order for the army to move. Despite the day and night labor of the road builders, the army encountered great difficulties traveling through the extensive swamps, dense forests and rocky terrain. After six days of tortuous travel, the army arrived at Wyoming, a distance of 65 miles.
At Wyoming, Sullivan made the discouraging discovery that all the meat stores had spoiled due to improper packing. He was forced to send officers to lower Pennsylvania for live cattle to be driven along with the army. The supply of clothing and shoes had also failed to arrive and Sullivan wrote on July 21st that more than a third of his soldiers had not a shirt on their back. After spending more than a month gathering the necessary supplies, the army prepared to move.
The artillery and heavy supplies were loaded into 214 boats to be poled up the Susquehanna to Tioga Point. The remaining supplies were loaded onto 1200 pack-horses. At 12 o’clock noon on July 31st the army broke camp and began its forward march. They followed the Indian trail up the river and formed a long line about six miles in length. The Indian sentinels watching from the hills likened the army to a long blue snake and often referred to it in that manner.
The fleet experienced great difficulty making headway against the rapids and strong current and equal difficulty was experienced with the pack-horses as the packs frequently slipped or fell off.
On Aug.11 after having covered 80 miles of winding river and rough terrain, the army arrived at Tioga Point. Upon arrival at Tioga Point Gen. Sullivan sent a scouting party north and ordered a fort and four blockhouses to be built for the security of the fleet and stores.
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