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General Benedict Arnold (Print: Library of Congress)

On the night of September 21-22, 1780, General Benedict Arnold, American commander of West Point, met with British spy Major John André to hand over plans of the important Hudson River fort to the enemy. Unhappy with how General George Washington treated him and in need of money, Arnold planned to 'sell' West Point for 20,000 pounds–a move that would enable the British to cut New England off from the rest of the rebellious colonies. Arnold's treason was exposed when André was captured by American militiamen who found the incriminating plans in his stocking. Arnold received a timely warning and was able to escape to a British ship, but André was hanged as a spy on October 2, 1780. Condemned for his Revolutionary War actions by both Americans and British, Arnold lived until 1801.


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