Teacher Resources 1781 The Battle of Jersey - Learning - Jersey Heritage

In early 1781 a French invasion force successfully landed on Jersey’s east coast  and nearly succeeded in capturing the island.  The Battle of Jersey as it came to be known took place at the height of the American War of Independence and delivered a shot of heroism and patriotism just when the British Crown and people needed it most.

Here is the story being the famous painting - John Singleton Copley's masterpiece The Death of Major Peirson.  Copley’s painting tells the story behind the Battle – of a hero, a coward and a scoundrel and will explain the political and social messages behind the brush strokes.

Celebrating the British victory over the French in 1781 in the Battle of Jersey and paying tribute to the commander of the British forces, 24-year old Major Francis Peirson, who was killed leading his troops, this is perhaps the most important painting in Jersey's history and has come to represent the Island's nationhood, status and loyalty to the Crown.



A worksheet containing a breakdown of the timings of the events of the Battle of Jersey from the French landings to the British Victory.

An information sheet on the main characters involved in the story of the Battle of Jersey.

Colour in a picture of a British soldier from the time of the Battle.

Map of St Helier at the time of the Battle.

Look at two paintings of the battle of Jersey and make a list of how they are different.  You can use the same images to make a list of how they are similar.