Two British military heritage organizations have joined a coalition that opposes plans by the Institute to build faculty housing on Maxwell’s Field. The site, adjacent to the Battlefield State Park, is part of the area where George Washington led a charge against the British Army to win the 1777 Battle of Princeton.
The Battlefields Trust, a United Kingdom-based charity dedicated to the preservation, research and interpretation of battlefields as educational and historical resources, campaigns to defend the battlefields of Great Britain from inappropriate development.
The Royal Tigers’ Association, the veteran organization of the Royal Leicestershire Regiment, is composed of men from one of the most famous fighting units to ever serve in the British Army. The regiment, then identified as the 17th Regiment of Foot, served throughout the American Revolutionary War.
Both organizations have sent letters to the Institute for Advanced Study urging the Institute to abandon its plans to build houses on what opponents of the project claim is the most historically sensitive part of the 22-acre Maxwell’s Field property. The site has been identified as core battlefield land by the US National Park Service as part of the area where the right wing of George Washington’s counterattack against the 17th Regiment of Foot first struck British lines.
In its letter, the Battlefields Trust said an institution with its own rich history should be mindful of preserving other historic places.
“The Battlefields Trust is therefore disappointed that an organization which cherishes its own history is acting in a way that seemingly ignores the unique historic value of a battlefield site in which it acts as custodian for the people of the US and UK,” reads the letter.
Both organizations have joined the Save Princeton Coalition, an alliance of historic preservation organizations working to protect the Princeton Battlefield. The other Save Princeton organizations are: the American Association for State and Local History, the American Revolution Institute of the Society of the Cincinnati, the Battlefields Trust, the Civil War Trust, the Cultural Landscape Foundation, the National Coalition for History, the National Parks Conservation Association, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Preservation Maryland, the Princeton Battlefield Society, the Royal Leicestershire Regiment Association, and the New Jersey Chapter of the Sierra Club.