Paul Revere And The Minutemen Analysis
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Paul Revere and the American Revolution - Fast Facts - History
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The war continued badly for the Americans, with most battles in the south going against them, and General Benedict Arnold abandoning them for the British side. Lafayette spent the first part of the winter of —81 in Philadelphia, where the American Philosophical Society elected him its first foreign member. Congress asked him to return to France to lobby for more men and supplies, but Lafayette refused, sending letters instead. After the Continental victory at the Battle of Cowpens in South Carolina in January , Washington ordered Lafayette to re-form his force in Philadelphia and go south to Virginia to link up with troops commanded by Baron von Steuben. The combined force was to try to trap British forces commanded by Benedict Arnold, with French ships preventing his escape by sea.
If Lafayette was successful, Arnold was to be summarily hanged. British command of the seas prevented the plan, though Lafayette and a small part of his force the rest left behind in Annapolis was able to reach von Steuben in Yorktown, Virginia. Von Steuben sent a plan to Washington, proposing to use land forces and French ships to trap the main British force under Lord Cornwallis. When he received no new orders from Washington, Lafayette began to move his troops north toward Philadelphia, only to be ordered to Virginia to assume military command there.
An outraged Lafayette assumed he was being abandoned in a backwater while decisive battles took place elsewhere, and objected to his orders in vain. He also sent letters to the Chevalier de la Luzerne , French ambassador in Philadelphia, describing how ill-supplied his troops were. As Lafayette hoped, la Luzerne sent his letter on to France with a recommendation of massive French aid, which, after being approved by the king, would play a crucial part in the battles to come. Washington, fearing a letter might be captured by the British, could not tell Lafayette that he planned to trap Cornwallis in a decisive campaign.
Lafayette evaded Cornwallis' attempts to capture him in Richmond. Cornwallis sent only an advance guard to the south side of the river, hiding many of his other troops in the forest on the north side, hoping to ambush Lafayette. Wayne found himself vastly outnumbered, and, instead of retreating, led a bayonet charge. The charge bought time for the Americans, and the British did not pursue.
The Battle of Green Spring was a victory for Cornwallis, but the American army was bolstered by the display of courage by the men. By August, Cornwallis had established the British at Yorktown, and Lafayette took up position on Malvern Hill , stationing artillery surrounding the British, who were close to the York River , and who had orders to construct fortifications to protect the British ships in Hampton Roads. Lafayette's containment trapped the British when the French fleet arrived and won the Battle of the Virginia Capes , depriving Cornwallis of naval protection. On 28 September, with the French fleet blockading the British, the combined forces laid siege to Yorktown.
These two redoubts were key to breaking the British defenses. Yorktown was the last major land battle of the American Revolution, but the British still held several major port cities. Lafayette wanted to lead expeditions to capture them, but Washington felt that he would be more useful seeking additional naval support from France. Congress also sent Louis XVI an official letter of commendation on the marquis's behalf. Lafayette left Boston for France on 18 December where he was welcomed as a hero, and he was received at the Palace of Versailles on 22 January He witnessed the birth of his daughter, whom he named Marie-Antoinette Virginie upon Thomas Jefferson's recommendation.
He worked on a combined French and Spanish expedition against the British West Indies in , as no formal peace treaty had yet been signed. The Treaty of Paris was signed between Great Britain and the United States in , which made the expedition unnecessary; Lafayette took part in those negotiations. Lafayette worked with Jefferson to establish trade agreements between the United States and France which aimed to reduce America's debt to France. He urged the emancipation of slaves and their establishment as tenant farmers in a letter to Washington, who was a slave owner.
Lafayette visited America in — where he enjoyed an enthusiastic welcome, visiting all the states. The trip included a visit to Washington's farm at Mount Vernon on 17 August. He addressed the Virginia House of Delegates where he called for "liberty of all mankind" and urged emancipation of slaves,  and he urged the Pennsylvania Legislature to help form a federal union the states were then bound by the Articles of Confederation.
He visited the Mohawk Valley in New York to participate in peace negotiations with the Iroquois, some of whom he had met in Maryland's legislature honored him by making him and his male heirs "natural born Citizens" of the state, which made him a natural-born citizen of the United States after the ratification of the Constitution. He also sought to correct the injustices that Huguenots in France had endured since the revocation of the Edict of Nantes a century before. The king appointed Lafayette to the body, which convened on 22 February Lafayette was elected as a representative of the nobility the Second Estate from Riom.
The Estates General convened on 5 May ; debate began on whether the delegates should vote by head or by Estate. If by Estate, then the nobility and clergy would be able to outvote the commons; if by head, then the larger Third Estate could dominate. Before the meeting, as a member of the "Committee of Thirty", Lafayette agitated for voting by head, rather than estate. This action led to the Tennis Court Oath , where the excluded members swore to not separate until a constitution was established. The king had the royal army under the duc de Broglie surround Paris. On 15 July, Lafayette was acclaimed commander-in-chief of the Parisian National Guard, an armed force established to maintain order under the control of the Assembly military service as well as policing, traffic control, sanitization, lighting, among other matters of local administration.
This combined the red and blue colors of the city of Paris with the royal white, and originated the French tricolor. The National Assembly approved the Declaration on 26 August,  but the king rejected it on 2 October. Members of the National Guard followed the march, with Lafayette reluctantly leading them. At Versailles, the king accepted the Assembly's votes on the Declaration, but refused requests to go to Paris, and the crowd broke into the palace at dawn. Lafayette took the royal family onto the palace balcony and attempted to restore order,   but the crowd insisted that the king and his family move to Paris and the Tuileries Palace.
She returned alone and people shouted to shoot her, but she stood her ground and no one opened fire. Lafayette kissed her hand, leading to cheers from the crowd. However, the National Assembly thought condemning two significant revolutionaries would hurt the progress and public reception of the revolutionary administration. As leader of the National Guard, Lafayette attempted to maintain order and steer a middle ground, even as the radicals gained increasing influence.
Lafayette continued to work for order in the coming months. He and part of the National Guard left the Tuileries on 28 February to handle a conflict in Vincennes, and hundreds of armed nobles arrived at the Tuileries to defend the king while he was gone. However, there were rumors that these nobles had come to take the king away and place him at the head of a counter-revolution. Lafayette quickly returned to the Tuileries and disarmed the nobles after a brief standoff.
The event came to be known as the Day of Daggers , and it boosted Lafayette's popularity with the French people for his quick actions to protect the king. A plot known as the Flight to Varennes almost enabled the king to escape from France on 20 June The king and queen had escaped from the Tuileries Palace, essentially under the watch of Lafayette and the National Guard. Being notified of their escape, Lafayette sent the Guard out in a multitude of directions in order to retrieve the escapee monarchs. Five days later, Lafayette and the National Guard led the royal carriage back into Paris amidst a crowding mob calling for the heads of the monarchs as well as Lafayette.
Either you sold out your country or you are stupid for having made a promise for a person whom you could not trust…. France can be free without you. He continued to urge the constitutional rule of law, but he was drowned out by the mob and its leaders. Lafayette's public standing continued to decline through the latter half of The radical Cordeliers organized an event at the Champ de Mars on 17 July to gather signatures on a petition to the National Assembly that it either abolish the monarchy or allow its fate to be decided in a referendum.
The protesters, finding two men hiding under an altar at the event, accused of being either spies or of potentially planting explosives, eventually hung the men from lampposts and placed their heads on the ends of pikes. Lafayette rode into the Champ de Mars at the head of his troops to restore order, but they were met with the throwing of stones from the crowd. The soldiers began to first fire above the crowd in order to intimidate and disperse them, which only led to retaliation and eventually the death of two volunteer chasseurs.
Accounts from those close to Lafayette claim that around ten citizens were killed in the event, whereas other accounts propose fifty-four, and the sensational newspaper publisher Jean-Paul Marat claimed over four hundred bodies had been disposed of into the river later that night. Martial law was declared, and the leaders of the mob fled and went into hiding, such as Danton and Marat. The Assembly finalized a constitution in September, and Lafayette resigned from the National Guard in early October, with a semblance of constitutional law restored.
Lafayette returned to his home province of Auvergne in October Lafayette, who had been promoted to Lieutenant General on 30 June , received command of one of the three armies, the Army of the Centre , based at Metz, on 14 December On 23 April Robespierre demanded Marquis de Lafayette to step down. This emotion was common in the army, as demonstrated after the Battle of Marquain , when the routed French troops dragged their leader Dillon to Lille , where he was torn to pieces by the mob. One of the army commanders, Rochambeau, resigned.
In June , Lafayette criticized the growing influence of the radicals through a letter to the Assembly from his field post,  and ended his letter by calling for their parties to be "closed down by force". Lafayette went there, and on 28 June delivered a fiery speech before the Assembly denouncing the Jacobins and other radical groups. He was instead accused of deserting his troops. Lafayette called for volunteers to counteract the Jacobins; when only a few people showed up, he understood the public mood and hastily left Paris. Robespierre called him a traitor and the mob burned him in effigy. The 25 July Brunswick Manifesto , which warned that Paris would be destroyed by the Austrians and Prussians if the king was harmed, led to the downfall of Lafayette, and of the royal family.
A mob attacked the Tuileries on 10 August, and the king and queen were imprisoned at the Assembly, then taken to the Temple. The Assembly abolished the monarchy—the king and queen would be beheaded in the coming months. On 14 August, the minister of justice, Danton, put out a warrant for Lafayette's arrest. Lafayette was taken prisoner by the Austrians near Rochefort when another former French officer, Jean-Xavier Bureau de Pusy , asked for rights of transit through Austrian territory on behalf of a group of French officers. This was initially granted, as it had been for others fleeing France, but was revoked when the famous Lafayette was recognized.
Lafayette was held at Nivelles ,  then transferred to Luxembourg where a coalition military tribunal declared him, de Pusy, and two others to be prisoners of state for their roles in the Revolution. The tribunal ordered them held until a restored French king could render final judgment on them. The party traveled to the Prussian fortress-city of Wesel , where the Frenchmen remained in verminous individual cells in the central citadel from 19 September to 22 December When victorious French revolutionary troops began to threaten the Rhineland , King Frederick William II transferred the prisoners east to the citadel at Magdeburg , where they remained an entire year, from 4 January to 4 January Frederick William decided that he could gain little by continuing to battle the unexpectedly successful French forces, and that there were easier pickings for his army in the Kingdom of Poland.
Accordingly, he stopped armed hostilities with the Republic and turned the state prisoners back over to his erstwhile coalition partner, the Habsburg Austrian monarch Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor. Lafayette and his companions were initially sent to Neisse today Nysa, Poland in Silesia. On 17 May , they were taken across the Austrian border, where a military unit was waiting to receive them. Lafayette, when captured, had tried to use the American citizenship he had been granted to secure his release, and contacted William Short , United States minister in The Hague. Washington, who was by then president, had instructed the envoys to avoid actions that entangled the country in European affairs,  and the U.
Secretary of State Jefferson found a loophole allowing Lafayette to be paid, with interest, for his services as a major general from to An act was rushed through Congress and signed by President Washington. These funds allowed both Lafayettes privileges in their captivity. A more direct means of aiding the former general was an escape attempt sponsored by Alexander Hamilton's sister-in-law Angelica Schuyler Church and her husband John Barker Church , a British Member of Parliament who had served in the Continental Army. This was the son of Benjamin Huger, whom Lafayette had stayed with upon his first arrival in America.
Once Adrienne was released from prison in France, she, with the help of U. Minister to France James Monroe , obtained passports for her and her daughters from Connecticut, which had granted the entire Lafayette family citizenship. Lafayette, who had endured harsh solitary confinement since his escape attempt a year before, was astounded when soldiers opened his prison door to usher in his wife and daughters on 15 October The family spent the next two years in confinement together.
Through diplomacy, the press, and personal appeals, Lafayette's sympathizers on both sides of the Atlantic made their influence felt, most importantly on the post- Reign of Terror French government. Lafayette's captivity of over five years thus came to an end. From Hamburg, Lafayette sent a note of thanks to General Bonaparte. The French government, the Directorate , was unwilling to have Lafayette return unless he swore allegiance, which he was not willing to do, as he believed it had come to power by unconstitutional means.
As revenge, it had his remaining properties sold, leaving him a pauper. The family, soon joined by Georges Washington, who had returned from America, recuperated on a property near Hamburg belonging to Adrienne's aunt. Due to conflict between the United States and France , Lafayette could not go to America as he had hoped, making him a man without a country. Adrienne was able to go to Paris, and attempted to secure her husband's repatriation, flattering Bonaparte, who had returned to France after more victories.
Bonaparte expressed rage, but Adrienne was convinced he was simply posing, and proposed to him that Lafayette would pledge his support, then would retire from public life to a property she had reclaimed, La Grange. France's new ruler allowed Lafayette to remain, though originally without citizenship and subject to summary arrest if he engaged in politics, with the promise of eventual restoration of civil rights.
Lafayette remained quietly at La Grange, and when Bonaparte held a memorial service in Paris for Washington, who had died in December , Lafayette, though he had expected to be asked to deliver the eulogy, was not invited, nor was his name mentioned. Bonaparte restored Lafayette's citizenship on 1 March and he was able to recover some of his properties. After Marengo , the First Consul offered him the post of French minister to the United States , but Lafayette declined, saying he was too attached to America to act in relation to it as a foreign envoy.
In , he was part of the tiny minority that voted no in the referendum that made Bonaparte consul for life. In , Bonaparte was crowned the Emperor Napoleon after a plebiscite in which Lafayette did not participate. The retired general remained relatively quiet, although he made Bastille Day addresses. During a trip to Auvergne in , Adrienne became ill, suffering from complications stemming from her time in prison.
Many influential people and members of the public visited him, especially Americans. He wrote many letters, especially to Jefferson, and exchanged gifts as he had once done with Washington. Lafayette was received by the new king, but the staunch republican opposed the new, highly restrictive franchise for the Chamber of Deputies that granted the vote to only 90, men in a nation of 25 million. Lafayette did not stand for election in , remaining at La Grange. There was discontent in France among demobilized soldiers and others. Napoleon had been exiled only as far as Elba , an island in the Tuscan archipelago; seeing an opportunity, he landed at Cannes on 1 March with a few hundred followers.
Frenchmen flocked to his banner, and he took Paris later that month, causing Louis to flee to Ghent. Lafayette refused Napoleon's call to serve in the new government,  but accepted election to the new Chamber of Representatives under the Charter of There, after Napoleon's defeat at the Battle of Waterloo , Lafayette called for his abdication. Responding to the emperor's brother Lucien , Lafayette argued:. By what right do you dare accuse the nation of The nation has followed him on the fields of Italy, across the sands of Egypt and the plains of Germany, across the frozen deserts of Russia.
The nation has followed him in fifty battles, in his defeats and in his victories, and in doing so we have to mourn the blood of three million Frenchmen. On 22 June , four days after Waterloo, Napoleon abdicated. Lafayette arranged for the former emperor's passage to America, but the British prevented this, and Napoleon ended his days on the island of Saint Helena. Once the Prussians left in late , Lafayette returned to his house, a private citizen again. Lafayette's homes, both in Paris and at La Grange, were open to any Americans who wished to meet the hero of their Revolution, and to many other people besides. Among those whom Irish novelist Sydney, Lady Morgan met at table during her month-long stay at La Grange in were the Dutch painter Ary Scheffer and the historian Augustin Thierry , who sat alongside American tourists.
During the first decade of the Bourbon Restoration , Lafayette lent his support to a number of conspiracies in France and other European countries, all of which came to nothing. He was involved in the various Charbonnier plots, and agreed to go to the city of Belfort , where there was a garrison of French troops, and assume a major role in the revolutionary government. Warned that the royal government had found out about the conspiracy, he turned back on the road to Belfort, avoiding overt involvement.
More successfully, he supported the Greek Revolution beginning in , and by letter attempted to persuade American officials to ally with the Greeks. Lafayette remained a member of the restored Chamber of Deputies until , when new plural voting rules helped defeat his bid for re-election. President James Monroe and Congress invited Lafayette to visit the United States in , in part to celebrate the nation's upcoming 50th anniversary. He was greeted by a group of Revolutionary War veterans who had fought alongside him many years before. New York erupted for four continuous days and nights of celebration. He then departed for what he thought would be a restful trip to Boston but instead found the route lined by cheering citizens, with welcomes organized in every town along the way.
According to Unger, "It was a mystical experience they would relate to their heirs through generations to come. Lafayette had materialized from a distant age, the last leader and hero at the nation's defining moment. They knew they and the world would never see his kind again. New York, Boston, and Philadelphia did their best to outdo each other in the celebrations honoring Lafayette. Philadelphia renovated the Old State House today Independence Hall which might otherwise have been torn down, because they needed a location for a reception for him. Until that point, it had not been usual in the United States to build monuments, but Lafayette's visit set off a wave of construction—usually with him laying the cornerstone himself, in his capacity as mason.
The arts benefited by his visit, as well, as many cities commissioned portraits for their civic buildings, and the likenesses were seen on innumerable souvenirs. Lafayette had intended to visit only the original 13 states during a four-month visit, but the stay stretched to 16 months as he visited all 24 states. The towns and cities that he visited gave him enthusiastic welcomes, including Fayetteville, North Carolina , the first city named in his honor.
He went to Mount Vernon in Virginia as he had 40 years before, this time viewing Washington's grave. He was at Yorktown on 19 October for the anniversary of Cornwallis's surrender, then journeyed to Monticello to meet with his old friend Jefferson—and Jefferson's successor James Madison , who arrived unexpectedly. He had also dined with year-old John Adams , the other living former president, at Peacefield , his home near Boston.
With the roads becoming impassable, Lafayette stayed in Washington City for the winter of —25, and thus was there for the climax of the hotly contested election in which no presidential candidate was able to secure a majority of the Electoral College , throwing the decision to the House of Representatives. In March , Lafayette began to tour the southern and western states. There would be special events, visits to battlefields and historic sites, celebratory dinners, and time set aside for the public to meet the legendary hero of the Revolution.
He was traveling up the Ohio River by steamboat when the vessel sank beneath him, and he was put in a lifeboat by his son and secretary, then taken to the Kentucky shore and rescued by another steamboat that was going in the other direction. Its captain insisted on turning around, however, and taking Lafayette to Louisville, Kentucky. They did not carry knapsacks, since they would not be encamped. They carried their haversacks food bags , canteens, muskets, and accoutrements, and marched off in wet, muddy shoes and soggy uniforms. As they marched through Menotomy , sounds of the colonial alarms throughout the countryside caused the few officers who were aware of their mission to realize they had lost the element of surprise.
At about 3 am, Colonel Smith sent Major Pitcairn ahead with six companies of light infantry under orders to quick march to Concord. At about 4 am Smith made the wise but belated decision to send a messenger back to Boston asking for reinforcements. The continental force included some 4, militia and local minuteman companies. Thirty towns from the surrounding area sent men into combat with many more on the way. By afternoon, many regimental commands were fundamentally present and acting in a coordinated manner. Several provincial generals were en route to the fighting during the day but not in a position to assert overall command. General William Heath of Roxbury, Massachusetts exerted command of a phase of the fighting toward the day's end. The British force was organized into: .
Although often styled a battle, in reality, the engagement at Lexington was a minor brush or skirmish. Of the militiamen who lined up, nine had the surname Harrington, seven Munroe including the company's orderly sergeant, William Munroe , four Parker, three Tidd, three Locke, and three Reed; fully one-quarter of them were related to Captain Parker in some way. After having waited most of the night with no sign of any British troops and wondering if Paul Revere's warning was true , at about a.
He knew that most of the colonists' powder and military supplies at Concord had already been hidden. No war had been declared. The Declaration of Independence was more than fourteen months in the future. He also knew the British had gone on such expeditions before in Massachusetts, found nothing, and marched back to Boston. Parker had every reason to expect that to occur again. The Regulars would march to Concord, find nothing, and return to Boston, tired but empty-handed. He positioned his company carefully. He placed them in parade-ground formation , on Lexington Common.
They were in plain sight not hiding behind walls , but not blocking the road to Concord. They made a show of political and military determination, but no effort to prevent the march of the Regulars. Rather than turn left towards Concord, Marine Lieutenant Jesse Adair, at the head of the advance guard, decided on his own to protect the flank of the British column by first turning right and then leading the companies onto the Common itself, in a confused effort to surround and disarm the militia. Major Pitcairn arrived from the rear of the advance force and led his three companies to the left and halted them. The remaining companies under Colonel Smith lay further down the road toward Boston.
A British officer probably Pitcairn, but accounts are uncertain, as it may also have been Lieutenant William Sutherland then rode forward, waving his sword, and called out for the assembled militia to disperse, and may also have ordered them to "lay down your arms, you damned rebels! Both Parker and Pitcairn ordered their men to hold fire, but a shot was fired from an unknown source. We had a man of the 10th light Infantry wounded, nobody else was hurt. We then formed on the Common, but with some difficulty, the men were so wild they could hear no orders; we waited a considerable time there, and at length proceeded our way to Concord. According to one member of Parker's militia, none of the Americans had discharged their muskets as they faced the oncoming British troops.
The British did suffer one casualty, a slight wound, the particulars of which were corroborated by a deposition made by Corporal John Munroe. Munroe stated that:. After the first fire of the regulars, I thought, and so stated to Ebenezer Munroe Some witnesses among the regulars reported the first shot was fired by a colonial onlooker from behind a hedge or around the corner of a tavern. Some observers reported a mounted British officer firing first. Both sides generally agreed that the initial shot did not come from the men on the ground immediately facing each other.
Yet another theory is that the first shot was one fired by the British, that killed Asahel Porter, their prisoner who was running away he had been told to walk away and he would be let go, though he panicked and began to run. Historian David Hackett Fischer has proposed that there may actually have been multiple near-simultaneous shots. In response, the British troops, without orders, fired a devastating volley. This lack of discipline among the British troops had a key role in the escalation of violence. Witnesses at the scene described several intermittent shots fired from both sides before the lines of regulars began to fire volleys without receiving orders to do so. A few of the militiamen believed at first that the regulars were only firing powder with no ball, but when they realized the truth, few if any of the militia managed to load and return fire.
The rest ran for their lives. We Nathaniel Mulliken, Philip Russell, [and 32 other men About five o'clock in the morning, hearing our drum beat, we proceeded towards the parade, and soon found that a large body of troops were marching towards us, some of our company were coming to the parade, and others had reached it, at which time, the company began to disperse, whilst our backs were turned on the troops, we were fired on by them, and a number of our men were instantly killed and wounded, not a gun was fired by any person in our company on the regulars to our knowledge before they fired on us, and continued firing until we had all made our escape.
The regulars then charged forward with bayonets. Captain Parker's cousin Jonas was run through. Eight Lexington men were killed, and ten were wounded. The only British casualty was a soldier who was wounded in the thigh. Jonathon Harrington, fatally wounded by a British musket ball, managed to crawl back to his home, and died on his own doorstep.
One wounded man, Prince Estabrook , was a black slave who was serving in the militia. The companies under Pitcairn's command got beyond their officers' control in part because they were unaware of the actual purpose of the day's mission. They fired in different directions and prepared to enter private homes. Colonel Smith, who was just arriving with the remainder of the regulars, heard the musket fire and rode forward from the grenadier column to see the action. He quickly found a drummer and ordered him to beat assembly. The grenadiers arrived shortly thereafter, and once order was restored among the soldiers, the light infantry was permitted to fire a victory volley, after which the column was reformed and marched on toward Concord.
In response to the raised alarm, the militiamen of Concord and Lincoln had mustered in Concord. They received reports of firing at Lexington and were not sure whether to wait until they could be reinforced by troops from towns nearby, or to stay and defend the town, or to move east and greet the British Army from superior terrain. A column of militia marched down the road toward Lexington to meet the British, traveling about 1. As the regulars numbered about and the militia at this time only numbered about , the militia column turned around and marched back into Concord, preceding the regulars by a distance of about yards m. Caution prevailed, and Colonel James Barrett withdrew from the center of town and led the men across the North Bridge to a hill about a mile north, where they could continue to watch the troop movements of the British and the activities in the town center.
This step proved fortuitous, as the ranks of the militia continued to grow as minuteman companies arriving from the western towns joined them there. When the British troops arrived in the village of Concord, Lt. Smith divided them to carry out Gage's orders. The 10th Regiment's company of grenadiers secured South Bridge under Captain Mundy Pole, while seven companies of light infantry under Captain Parsons, numbering about , secured the North Bridge, where they were visible across the cleared fields to the assembling militia companies. Captain Parsons took four companies from the 5th, 23rd, 38th, and 52nd Regiments up the road 2 miles 3. These companies, which were under the relatively inexperienced command of Captain Walter Laurie, were aware that they were significantly outnumbered by the plus militiamen.
The concerned Captain Laurie sent a messenger to Lt. Smith requesting reinforcements. Using detailed information provided by Loyalist spies, the grenadier companies searched the small town for military supplies. When they arrived at Ephraim Jones's tavern, by the jail on the South Bridge road, they found the door barred shut, and Jones refused them entry. According to reports provided by local Loyalists, Pitcairn knew cannon had been buried on the property. Jones was ordered at gunpoint to show where the guns were buried.
These turned out to be three massive pieces, firing pound shot, that were much too heavy to use defensively, but very effective against fortifications, with sufficient range to bombard the city of Boston from other parts of nearby mainland. They also burned some gun carriages found in the village meetinghouse, and when the fire spread to the meetinghouse itself, local resident Martha Moulton persuaded the soldiers to help in a bucket brigade to save the building.
Of the damage done, only that done to the cannon was significant. All of the shot and much of the food was recovered after the British left. During the search, the regulars were generally scrupulous in their treatment of the locals, including paying for food and drink consumed. This excessive politeness was used to advantage by the locals, who were able to misdirect searches from several smaller caches of militia supplies. Barrett's Farm had been an arsenal weeks before, but few weapons remained now, and according to family legend, these were quickly buried in furrows to look like a crop had been planted. The troops sent there did not find any supplies of consequence.
Colonel Barrett's troops, upon seeing smoke rising from the village square as the British burned cannon carriages, and seeing only a few light infantry companies directly below them, decided to march back toward the town from their vantage point on Punkatasset Hill to a lower, closer flat hilltop about yards m from the North Bridge. As the militia advanced, the two British companies from the 4th and 10th Regiments that held the position near the road retreated to the bridge and yielded the hill to Barrett's men. Five full companies of Minutemen and five more of militia from Acton , Concord, Bedford and Lincoln occupied this hill as more groups of men streamed in, totaling at least against Captain Laurie's light infantry companies, a force totaling 90—95 men.
Barrett ordered the Massachusetts men to form one long line two abreast on the highway leading down to the bridge, and then he called for another consultation. While overlooking North Bridge from the top of the hill, Barrett, Lt. John Robinson of Westford  and the other captains discussed a possible advance on the bridge. Barrett asked Captain Isaac Davis , who commanded a company of Minutemen from Acton, if his company would be willing to lead the advance.
Davis responded, "I'm not afraid to go, and I haven't a man that's afraid to go. Barrett told the men to load their weapons but not to fire unless fired upon, and then ordered them to advance. Laurie ordered the British companies guarding the bridge to retreat across it. One officer then tried to pull up the loose planks of the bridge to impede the colonial advance, but Major Buttrick began to yell at the regulars to stop harming the bridge. Robinson,  then Capt. Davis,  on the light infantry, keeping to the road, since it was surrounded by the spring floodwaters of the Concord River. Captain Laurie then made a poor tactical decision. Since his summons for help had not produced any results, he ordered his men to form positions for "street firing" behind the bridge in a column running perpendicular to the river.
This formation was appropriate for sending a large volume of fire into a narrow alley between the buildings of a city, but not for an open path behind a bridge. Confusion reigned as regulars retreating over the bridge tried to form up in the street-firing position of the other troops. Lieutenant Sutherland, who was in the rear of the formation, saw Laurie's mistake and ordered flankers to be sent out. But as he was from a company different from the men under his command, only three soldiers obeyed him.
The remainder tried as best they could in the confusion to follow the orders of the superior officer. A shot rang out. It was likely a warning shot fired by a panicked, exhausted British soldier from the 43rd, according to Captain Laurie's report to his commander after the fight. Two other regulars then fired immediately after that, shots splashing in the river, and then the narrow group up front, possibly thinking the order to fire had been given, fired a ragged volley before Laurie could stop them.
Two of the Acton Minutemen, Private Abner Hosmer and Captain Isaac Davis, who were at the head of the line marching to the bridge, were hit and killed instantly. Ripley recalled:. The Americans commenced their march in double file… In a minute or two, the Americans being in quick motion and within ten or fifteen rods of the bridge, a single gun was fired by a British soldier, which marked the way, passing under Col. Robinson's arm and slightly wounding the side of Luther Blanchard, a fifer, in the Acton Company. Four more men were wounded. Major Buttrick then yelled to the militia, "Fire, for God's sake, fellow soldiers, fire!
The few front rows of colonists, bound by the road and blocked from forming a line of fire, managed to fire over each other's heads and shoulders at the regulars massed across the bridge. Four of the eight British officers and sergeants, who were leading from the front of their troops, were wounded by the volley of musket fire. At least three privates Thomas Smith, Patrick Gray, and James Hall, all from the 4th were killed or mortally wounded, and nine were wounded. I was an eyewitness to the following facts.
The people of Westford and Acton, some few of Concord, were the first who faced the British at Concord bridge. The British had placed about ninety men as a guard at the North Bridge; we had then no certain information that any had been killed at Lexington, we saw the British making destruction in the town of Concord; it was proposed to advance to the bridge; on this Colonel Robinson, of Westford, together with Major Buttrick, took the lead; strict orders were given not to fire, unless the British fired first; when they advanced about halfway on the causeway the British fired one gun, a second, a third, and then the whole body; they killed Colonel Davis, of Acton, and a Mr. Our people then fired over one another's heads, being in a long column, two and two; they killed two and wounded eleven.
Lieutenant Hawkstone, said to be the greatest beauty of the British army, had his cheeks so badly wounded that it disfigured him much, of which he bitterly complained. On this, the British fled, and assembled on the hill, the north side of Concord, and dressed their wounded, and then began their retreat. As they descended the hill near the road that comes out from Bedford they were pursued; Colonel Bridge, with a few men from Bedford and Chelmsford, came up, and killed several men. The regulars found themselves trapped in a situation where they were both outnumbered and outmaneuvered. Lacking effective leadership and terrified at the superior numbers of the enemy, with their spirit broken, and likely not having experienced combat before, they abandoned their wounded, and fled to the safety of the approaching grenadier companies coming from the town center, isolating Captain Parsons and the companies searching for arms at Barrett's Farm.
The colonists were stunned by their success. No one had actually believed either side would shoot to kill the other. Some advanced; many more retreated; and some went home to see to the safety of their homes and families. Colonel Barrett eventually began to recover control. He moved some of the militia back to the hilltop yards m away and sent Major Buttrick with others across the bridge to a defensive position on a hill behind a stone wall. Lieutenant Colonel Smith heard the exchange of fire from his position in the town moments after he received the request for reinforcements from Laurie. He quickly assembled two companies of grenadiers to lead toward the North Bridge himself.
As these troops marched, they met the shattered remnants of the three light infantry companies running towards them. Smith was concerned about the four companies that had been at Barrett's since their route to town was now unprotected. When he saw the Minutemen in the distance behind their wall, he halted his two companies and moved forward with only his officers to take a closer look. One of the Minutemen behind that wall observed, "If we had fired, I believe we could have killed almost every officer there was in the front, but we had no orders to fire and there wasn't a gun fired.
At this point, the detachment of regulars sent to Barrett's farm marched back from their fruitless search of that area. They passed through the now mostly-deserted battlefield and saw dead and wounded comrades lying on the bridge. There was one who looked to them as if he had been scalped, which angered and shocked the British soldiers. They crossed the bridge and returned to the town by a. The regulars continued to search for and destroy colonial military supplies in the town, ate lunch, reassembled for marching, and left Concord after noon. This delay in departure gave colonial militiamen from outlying towns additional time to reach the road back to Boston.
Lieutenant Colonel Smith, concerned about the safety of his men, sent flankers to follow a ridge and protect his forces from the roughly 1, colonials now in the field as the British marched east out of Concord. This ridge ended near Meriam's Corner, a crossroads about a mile 2 km outside the village of Concord, where the main road came to a bridge across a small stream. To cross the narrow bridge, the British had to pull the flankers back into the main column and close ranks to a mere three soldiers abreast. Colonial militia companies arriving from the north and east had converged at this point and presented a clear numerical advantage over the regulars. As the last of the British column marched over the narrow bridge, the British rear guard wheeled and fired a volley at the colonial militiamen, who had been firing irregularly and ineffectively from a distance but now had closed to within musket range.
Two regulars were killed and perhaps six wounded, with no colonial casualties. Smith sent out his flanking troops again after crossing the small bridge. On Brooks Hill also known as Hardy's Hill about 1 mile 1. Smith withdrew his men from Brooks Hill, and the column continued on to another small bridge into Lincoln, at Brooks Tavern, where more militia companies intensified the attack from the north side of the road. The regulars soon reached a point in the road now referred to as the "Bloody Angle" where the road rises and curves sharply to the left through a lightly-wooded area.
Additional militia flowing parallel to the road from the engagement at Meriam's Corner positioned themselves on the northwest side of the road, catching the British in a crossfire, while other militia companies on the road closed from behind to attack. Some yards m further along, the road took another sharp curve, this time to the right, and again the British column was caught by another large force of militiamen firing from both sides. In passing through these two sharp curves, the British force lost thirty soldiers killed or wounded, and four colonial militia were also killed, including Captain Jonathan Wilson of Bedford , Captain Nathan Wyman of Billerica , Lt. The British soldiers escaped by breaking into a trot, a pace that the colonials could not maintain through the woods and swampy terrain.
Colonial forces on the road itself behind the British were too densely packed and disorganized to mount more than a harassing attack from the rear. As militia forces from other towns continued to arrive, the colonial forces had risen to about 2, men. The road now straightened to the east, with cleared fields and orchards along the sides. Smith sent out flankers again, who succeeded in trapping some militia from behind and inflicting casualties. British casualties were also mounting from these engagements and from persistent long-range fire from the militiamen, and the exhausted British were running out of ammunition. When the British column neared the boundary between Lincoln and Lexington, it encountered another ambush from a hill overlooking the road, set by Captain John Parker's Lexington militiamen, including some of them bandaged up from the encounter in Lexington earlier in the day.
At this point, Lt. Smith was wounded in the thigh and knocked from his horse. Major John Pitcairn assumed effective command of the column and sent light infantry companies up the hill to clear the militia forces. The light infantry cleared two additional hills as the column continued east—"The Bluff" and "Fiske Hill"— and took still more casualties from ambushes set by fresh militia companies joining the battle. In one of the musket volleys from the colonial soldiers, Major Pitcairn's horse bolted in fright, throwing Pitcairn to the ground and injuring his arm.
A few surrendered or were captured; some now broke formation and ran forward toward Lexington. In the words of one British officer, "we began to run rather than retreat in order. We attempted to stop the men and form them two deep, but to no purpose, the confusion increased rather than lessened. Upon this, they began to form up under heavy fire. Only one British officer remained uninjured among the three companies at the head of the British column as it approached Lexington Center. He understood the column's perilous situation: "There were very few men had any ammunition left, and so fatigued that we could not keep flanking parties out, so that we must soon have laid down our arms, or been picked off by the Rebels at their pleasure—nearer to—and we were not able to keep them off.
A full brigade, about 1, men with artillery under the command of Earl Percy, had arrived to rescue them. It was about p. Joseph Thaxter, wrote of his account:. We pursued them and killed some; when they got to Lexington, they were so close pursued and fatigued, that they must have soon surrendered, had not Lord Percy met them with a large reinforcement and two field-pieces. They fired them, but the balls went high over our heads. But no cannon ever did more execution, such stories of their effects had been spread by the tories through our troops, that from this time more wont back than pursed. We pursued to Charlestown Common, and then retired to Cambridge.
When the army collected at Cambridge, Colonel Prescott with his regiment of minute men, and John Robinson, his Lieutenant Colonel, were prompt at being at their post. In their accounts afterward, British officers and soldiers alike noted their frustration that the colonial militiamen fired at them from behind trees and stone walls, rather than confronting them in large, linear formations in the style of European warfare. Reflecting on the British experience that day, Earl Percy understood the significance of the American tactics:. Indeed, they knew too well what was proper, to do so. Whoever looks upon them as an irregular mob, will find himself much mistaken.
General Gage had anticipated that Lt. Smith's expedition might require reinforcement, so Gage drafted orders for reinforcing units to assemble in Boston at 4 a. But in his obsession for secrecy, Gage had sent only one copy of the orders to the adjutant of the 1st Brigade, whose servant then left the envelope on a table. Also at about 4 a. Smith now had a clear indication that all element of surprise had been lost and that alarm was spreading throughout the countryside. So he sent a rider back to Boston with a request for reinforcements. At about 5 a. Unfortunately for the British, once again only one copy of the orders was sent to each commander, and the order for the Royal Marines was delivered to the desk of Major John Pitcairn, who was already on the Lexington Common with Smith's column at that hour.
After these delays, Percy's brigade, about 1, strong, left Boston at about a. Along the way, the story is told, they marched to the tune of " Yankee Doodle " to taunt the inhabitants of the area. Percy took the land route across Boston Neck and over the Great Bridge, which some quick-thinking colonists had stripped of its planking to delay the British. The Harvard man, apparently oblivious to the reality of what was happening around him, showed him the proper road without thinking. He was later compelled to leave the country for inadvertently supporting the enemy.
They could hear gunfire in the distance as they set up their cannon and deployed lines of regulars on high ground with commanding views of the town. Colonel Smith's men approached like a fleeing mob with the full complement of colonial militia in close formation pursuing them. Percy ordered his artillery to open fire at extreme range, dispersing the colonial militiamen. Smith's men collapsed with exhaustion once they reached the safety of Percy's lines. You simply can't have been alive back then. Most of our water comes from the old Weston plant, south of here. Such an eyesore. Be a dear and pay it a visit, hmm? See what you can do? Maybe tidy up the place? It must be filthy. If you can get it working again, I'm sure I can Simply ghastly.
Pressure is down. Radiation is up. Why, it's practically toxic. Just think what it must be doing to my skin! This will never do. I don't mean to impose, darling, but Fallout 4 locations. Greater Boston Neighborhoods - West. Greater Boston Neighborhoods - East. Player Settlements. The Commonwealth individual locations. Settlement management in Fallout 4. Categories Fallout 4 settlements Fallout 4 locations. Universal Conquest Wiki. Major faction locations. Brotherhood of Steel. The Railroad. Commonwealth Minutemen. The Institute.