John Burgoyne served as a general in the British Army during the American Revolution. Known as “Gentleman Johnny,” Burgoyne commanded a force of 8,500 men during the 1777 campaign season in an attack on the Lake Champlain-Hudson River Vally from Canada. Burgoyne’s defeat at the in October 1777 led to the formal alliance between France and the United States in February 1778.
John Burgoyne was born on February 24, 1723, in Sutton, Bedfordshire, England. He was the firstborn son of British army captain John Burgoyne and his wife, Anna Maria.
John Burgoyne, Jr. was educated at Westminster in 1733, where he became good friends with future general and Lord James Strange, his future brother-in-law.
The couple traveled Europe, and John studied French literature and continental military practices. In 1755, after Burgoyne's friend/brother-in-law Lord Strange interceded with his father, and Lady Charlotte and John Burgoyne were reconciled with Lord Derby and returned to England. Lord Derby used his influence to help Burgoyne obtain a second captaincy in the 11th Dragoons the following June.