General Mordecai Gist Timeline

By : Illustrious McDonald "Don" Burbidge, 33°

By having had the honor to become one of the Generals commanding in the Trenches for the three last days of the Siege and particularly so when I reflect that the Surrender of Cornwallis and his Army must establish our Independence and pave the way to an honorable peace.

"General Mordecai Gist,At Yorktown"


Thomas Gist is born who was the father of Mordecai Gist


Feb. 22

Mordecai was the fourth child born of Colonel Thomas Gist and his wife, Susannah Cockey.


December 3,

Founder the Baltimore Independent Cadets and elected Captain.


January 14,

Commissioned second Major of the 1st Maryland, which was made famous by General Smallwood.



His first fight was at Long Island against the European professionals. It was at this fight that General Washington retreated and General Gist covered him while he retreated to New Jersey.



Established and elected captain of the "Baltimore Independent Company," one of the first of those volunteer military organizations which heralded the rapid approach of the war.


January 1,

The Maryland Convention appointed Mordecai Gist Second Major of General Smallwood’s First Maryland Battalion.



Battle of Long Island, Captain Gist, Maryland Regiment of 450 men who was under his command at the time fought the British using fixed bayonets. Five times this little band charged the forces of Cornwallis. Each time the band was driven back only to gather their energies to return to the battle. On their sixth attempt into this battle the British gave way in confusion. It was the first time the American Continentals fought an encounter of bayonets against the British Regulars. General George Washington witnessed this assault, and when he saw the great massacre, exclaimed: "Great God, what must my brave boys suffer this day." By their valor they became known as, "The Bayonets of the Revolution.")


December 10,

Promoted to Colonel and made commander of the 3rd Maryland Regiment at Germantown.

Established the Maryland 5th Infantry, the "Dandy Fifth", as part of the "Maryland Line" and established the Maryland Militia as one of the oldest regiments in the nation.


January 23,

Mordecai Gist marries his second wife Mary Sterrett of Baltimore.


January 8,

Birth of his first son named "Independence" to his second wife Mary Sterrett.


January 9,

Appointed Brigadier General and assumed command of the 2d Maryland Brigade.


Colonel Gist was placed in command for the defense of Maryland from the British. Soon after this he was promoted to Brigade General.


August 16,

At Camden, he won the praise of Kalb after the battle but lose the battle. This was his last battle for over a year.

October 14,

Received the vote of "Thanks" from Congress for his involvement during the Camden battle.


August 27,

He fought at Combahee Ferry.

Stayed at Kiawah Island to recover from a sickness.

A task force is established and is called "Gist’s Light Brigade."



Left his command at James Island to return to Baltimore, Maryland.

July 27,

Returned to Baltimore with the remnant of the Maryland Line, from South Carolina.

November 3,

Retired from active duty and purchased a plantation near Charleston, South Carolina.

Sometime during this year he became an "original" member of the Society of Cincinnati at Baltimore.


Became a resident of Charleston, South Carolina and marries his third wife Mrs. Mary Cattell of Charleston.


His second son States Rights Gist is born to his third wife.

Thomas Gist passes away. (Mordecai Gist father)

He was a distinguished Revolutionary officer. He was commander of the Soldier’s Delight Battalion in charge of preparing the young gentlemen of the time for when they would be in a battle to protect America. When these young men were ready he would send them to his son General Gist so that they might serve under his command. .


The Honorable William Drayton who was the Grand Master of the Ancient York Masons for the state of South Carolina retires and General Gist is elected Grand Master.


President George Washington pays a visit to Charleston, S. C. and is met by his good friend General Gist.


August 2

General Mordecai Gist who is 52 years of age dies in Charleston and is buried in St. Michael’s commentary.

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