The immediate object of the attack on the British Forts at Ticonderoga and Crown Point on May 10 and 11, 1775 was first to capture the forts themselves, but also to obtain a cannon and supplies to use for the impending seige of Boston . Washington, who assumed command of the American forces on July 2, 1775, could not attempt this attack without heavy artillery, which was procured by Colonel Ethan Allen, Colonel Benedict Arnold and Colonel Seth Warner with Vermont's Green Mountain Boys.
Green Mountain Boys, was the name of a group of soldiers from Vermont led by Allen, Warner and Arnold. They took their name from the Green Mountains in Vermont. The Green Mountain Boys were originally organized by Ethan Allen before the revolution to protest the claims of the New York government to Vermont territory, and were later joined by Seth Warner and Benedict Arnold.
Seth Warner, was born in Connecticut and later moved to Vermont, where he was declared an outlaw in 1771 for forcibly resisting a New York claim to the area, and had a reward offered for his capture. Under Ethan Allen and Benedict Arnold, he participated in the seizure of Fort Ticonderoga and led the force that took Crown Point the next day. Later that year, he was elected lieutenant-colonel commandant of the Green Mountain Boys.
Ethan Allen was also born Connecticut, moving to Vermont in 1769. He became involved in the struggle between New York and New Hampshire for control of the region, just like Allen was. The New York authorities rejected an appeal that the region be established as a separate province, and Allen organized a volunteer militia, called the Green Mountain Boys, to resist the New York cause. Volunteers were raised by the Committee of Correspondence. They recruited fifty men and three hundred pounds to set up the Green Mountain Boys. Allen too, was declared an outlaw by the governor of New York. At the outbreak of the Revolution, Allen and The Green Mountain Boys offered to fight against the British.
Arnold was born in Connecticut and enlisted in the militia during the French and Indian War. Later, as a militia colonel, Arnold joined with Allen and The Green Mountain Boys to take Fort Ticonderoga .
Allen and Arnold, by order of the Connecticut legislature, crossed lake Champlain in two boats with a total of eighty-three men and captured Fort Ticonderoga early in the morning of May 10, 1775, while the British garrison was still sleeping. Allen demanded that the British commander surrender in the name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress . The commander complied and consequently there was no bloodshed. Military supplies from the fort were used to aid George Washington's ill-equipped American forces, who were attempting the seige of Boston.