Six secret heroes of the American Revolution whose names you should finally know

Fox News – by Brian Kilmeade

Every era has its heroes—a handful of names that stand out as the masterminds and superhuman workhorses, names that immediately invoke iconic images and harrowing tales.

The history of the American Revolution has an especially rich roll-call of heroes: George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Betsy Ross, Paul Revere, Nathan Hale.   

They led armies and negotiated with foreign governments; they created symbols to rally the troops and they gave us memorable stories and quotes about patriotism and sacrifice.

And now, we propose six more figures be added to that distinguished list of household names we all recognize in an instant for their stories of heroism and selflessness.

“George Washington’s Secret Six,” which was published by Penguin Press on November 5, lays out the daring twists and turns of the Culper Spy Ring in their quest to obtain intelligence form the British and help General Washington defeat the most powerful army in the world.

Abraham Woodhull (code name: Culper), Robert Townsend (Code name: Culper, Jr.), Austin Roe, Caleb Brewster, James Rivington, and a female agent (known only by her coded moniker of 355) — very few people outside of a small corner of New York and Connecticut have ever even heard of these five men and one woman who helped determine the outcome of the war and changed the course of American history.

But that is precisely why we wrote this book — to celebrate not only these six specific individuals, but also what makes America great.

The Culpers included a farmer, a longshoreman, a tavern-keeper, a store owner, a socialite, and a journalist.

They were a cross-section of America: working class and upper crust, entrepreneurs and hired hands. And they understood that the future of the nation rested as much with them as it did with the governmental leaders and public figures who captured the headlines.

Their tireless work saved the country from economic collapse, allowed for vital reinforcements from France to land safely on American shores, uncovered the treachery of Benedict Arnold, and even saved the day at the battle of Yorktown.

To say that the efforts of this one small ring were essential to the success of American independence is hardly an exaggeration.

But just as fascinating as their accomplishments were their personal lives. Through their letters we learn that they were at times scared, defiant, nervous, excited, anxious, depressed, determined, and heartbroken. In short, despite their heroics, they were ordinary people.

Like all heroes, they were men and women who risked life, limb, reputation, fortune, and honor to work for a cause bigger than themselves.

But like superheroes, they had secret identities unknown even to those closest to them — even to General Washington himself.

Like superheroes, they lived double lives often steeped in danger and loneliness. And like superheroes, when the job was done, they went quietly home and resumed the extraordinarily ordinary task of day-to-day living.

Sure, there are famous heroes in history, whose names dot monuments and history books; but there are also the quiet heroes — the ordinary ones who hear the call to serve and answer it without fanfare.

They are the ones who do not shy away when something great is asked of them.

These are the men and women, who, like the Culpers, are a different kind of hero.

They are the ones in the military serving at home and overseas, the ones working for the CIA and FBI, the first responders in our communities who lead two lives — a private life at home and a life of public service, risking danger to protect our nation, our homes, and our lives.

They are the heroes of our own era and even though, like the Culpers, we may not all know their names, that does not mean they are not worth learning.


Brian Kilmeade currently serves as co-host of Fox News Channel’s “FOX & Friends.”  Additionally, he serves as host of Kilmeade and Friends, a nationally syndicated three-hour radio show on Fox News Radio. The author of several books, his latest, written with Don Yaeger, is “George Washington’s Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved the American Revolution” (Penguin Press 2013).

Don Yaeger is an award-winning keynote speaker, business leadership coach, a seven-time New York Times Best-selling author and longtime Associate Editor for Sports Illustrated. He is the co-author with Brian Kilmeade of “George Washington’s Secret Six“.

One thought on “Six secret heroes of the American Revolution whose names you should finally know

  1. when bush senior was elected to the office of president of the usa in the late eighties a jewish co worker came over smiling like a cat who swallowed a camery stating to me thet america has it’s first jewish american president. i asked him as to how did he arrive at this conslussion as bush senior was a episcopalian christian protistant denomination. he replied that the senior bush was a direct descendent of col. solomon bush the famous jewish american revolutionary war hero. i doubted his claim but with all that happened i believe him now. this explains the reason behind bush’s role in getting america involved in the first iraqi war. the subsequent stealing of the presidential election twice by bush junior and getting america involved in the the second iraq war and the afghanistan war and looting oof the us treasury and transferring the wealth of america for the benefit of israel and the khazar judaic banksters.

    Solomon Bush: Is Remembered As A Soldier and Citizen
    by Seymour “Sy” Brody

    Lieutenant Colonel Solomon Bush was the highest-ranking
    Jewish officer in the Continental Army and was decorated for his bravery in action.
    The son of Mathias Bush, a merchant, he was born in Philadelphia in 1753.
    His first duty in the War of Independence was as
    deputy adjutant general of the Pennsylvania State Militia.
    At Brandywine, the militia encountered the British Army. Bullets
    and cannon balls flew through the air as the two armies intensified
    their battle. Captain Lewis Bush, the colonel’s brother, was mortally

    Colonel Bush was deeply involved in the battle and he received a
    near-fatal wound that affected him for the rest of his life. Although he
    survived the battle, he was captured when the British took Philadelphia.
    He was later freed in an exchange of prisoners between the British and the Americans.

    Upon his release, he applied for rations and back pay, and the Supreme
    Executive Committee of the Continental Army reviewed his request and his records.
    The review disclosed the distinguished and brilliant service that Colonel Bush had rendered in and out of battle,
    especially during the winter of 1776, “when the service was critical and
    hazardous.” The Supreme Executive Committee presented him with a
    special citation.

    After the war, Colonel Bush went to England seeking better medical
    care for his war wound. While he was there, he again found himself in a
    position to serve his country.

    The British, still smarting over their loss in the Revolutionary War,
    were pursuing a policy that finally led to the War of 1812. The British
    were seizing and searching American ships and conscripting their sailors
    into the Royal Navy.

    In England, there was no American Consul or Ambassador present
    to intervene, so Colonel Bush took it upon himself to act on behalf of
    his fellow citizens. He reported his efforts to President George Washington,
    whose answers contained warm commendations for the Colonel’s successful interventions.

    When he returned to America, Colonel Bush applied for the position of Postmaster General,
    which had recently been vacated. He was the first Jew known to have been considered for a Cabinet
    rank in the government. He failed to get this appointment and his unhealed war
    injury hastened his death in 1796. Prior to his death, however, Colonel
    Bush contributed toward a new building for the Mikveh Israel Congregation in Philadelphia.
    He will long be remembered for his service to his country as a soldier and a citizen.

    This is one of the 150 illustrated true stories of American heroism
    included in Jewish Heroes and Heroines of America, © 1996,
    written by Seymour “Sy” Brody of Delray Beach, Florida, illustrated
    by Art Seiden of Woodmere, New York, and published by Lifetime
    Books, Inc., Hollywood, FL.

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