On July 9, 1776, the Provincial Congress assembled at White Plains to receive the Declaration of Independence.
It was read and motioned by John Thomas and seconded by Samuel Crawford. With the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 10, the Provincial Congress of the Colony of New York became the Convention of the Representatives of the State of New York.
In 1775, Crawford, with James Varian, organized a company of soldiers from the people living in the towns of White Plains and Scarsdale. He was first elected Lieutenant, and later Captain, of the said company which attached to the regiment of Colonel Joseph Drake. It was the company’s duty to patrol from White Plains south to the Harlem River, nearly the whole of Westchester County.
Regarded as neutral ground, Westchester was infested by two bands of pillagers called the “Cow boys,” refugees in sympathy with the British, and the “Skinners,” who professed allegiance to the American cause. Each executed their own laws and reigned terror over the county.
On the November 18, 1777, Captain Crawford and a part of his company, acting as guard in removing the furniture of their Lieutenant Colonel to a place of safety, were attacked by a party of British Refugees, and Captain Crawford and several of his men were killed in the ensuing skirmish.