After the Fall of Fort Washington (Nov. 16, 1776), almost 3,000 Americans became prisoners of the British in New York City. The British subjected the soldiers to disease-ridden squalor and moldy, maggot-eaten food. The British offered better treatment to any who joined the Redcoats, but most Fort Washington prisoners refused. By Christmas 1776, two-thirds of the prisoners were dead.
See Edwin G. Burrows, Forgotten Patriots: The Untold Story of American Prisoners During the Revolutionary War (New York: Basic Books, 2008), 64.