Jean-Baptiste-Donatien de Vimeur, comte de Rochambeau

Jean-Baptiste-Donatien de Vimeur (Comte de Rochambeau) (1725–1807) was the commander of the French army in North America during the American Revolution. Rochambeau and his army arrived in Newport, Rhode Island in July 1780 and a year later, he joined his troops with George Washington’s at White Plains, New York. Washington and Rochambeau’s combined forces moved to Yorktown, Virginia, and, with support from the forces of the Marquis de Lafayette and Admiral de Grasse, trapped the British army of Lord Charles Cornwallis. The tactic forced Cornwallis’s surrender in October 1781. Rochambeau returned to France after the war and later supported and served in the French Revolution. He was arrested during the Reign of Terror and nearly executed. He was saved, however, from the guillotine by Robespierre’s fall from power in 1794.

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