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A Letter from Col. Paul Revere to the Corresponding Secretary Jeremy Belknap on the Battle of Lexington

I observed a Wood at a Small distance, & made for that. When I got there, out Started Six officers, on Horse back, and orderd me to dismount;-one of them, who appeared to have the command, examined me, where I came from, & what my Name Was? I told him. it was Revere, he as- ked if it was Paul? I told him yes He asked me if I was an express? I answered in the afirmative. He demanded what time I left Boston? I told him; and aded, that their troops had catched aground in passing the River, and that There would be five hundred Americans there in a short time, for I had alarmed the Country all the way up. He imediately rode towards those who stoppd us, when all five of them came down upon a full gallop; one of them, whom I afterwards found to be Major Mitchel, of the 5th Regiment, Clapped his pistol to my head, called me by name, & told me he was going to ask me some questions, & if I did not give him true answers, he would blow my brains out. He then asked me similar questions to those above.
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HIST 116: The American Revolution

HIST 116: The American Revolution Professor Joanne Freeman Yale University This Yale College course, taught on campus twice per week for 50 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Spring 2010 and is available free online. The American Revolution…

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From the Log of the USS Constitution

Habits on the USS Constitution The U.S.S. Constitution (Old Ironsides), as a combat vessel, carried 48,600 gallons of fresh water for her crew of 475 officers and men. This was sufficient to last six months of sustained operations at sea.…

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Hancock departs Harvard with its Money and Papers

The trouble between Harvard College and its treasurer, John Hancock, is too well known for detailing. Hancock, engrossed in affairs of graver importance, went off to Philadelphia carrying all the bonds and papers of the college with him, and, either from negligence or preoccupation turned a deaf ear to all the entreaties from the college officers. The comedy begins in a vote of the Corporation early in the spring. With the utmost suavity of language they desire to relieve him at once of his cares and the college money.

"Considering the present appearance of public affairs," are the words, "and that the Treasurer will soon be obliged to attend the Congress in Philadelphia, where he may be long detained; and being desirous to relieve the Treasurer from such a burden on his mind,

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Spain and the Independence of the United States

Spain and the Independence of the United States By Thomas e. Chavez Spanish forces overran the British lines during the climacticBattle of Pensacola (1781). In December 1785, George Washington, “recently retired to the country life,” wrote to the Spanish minister…

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An Alarm from Lexington

In the archives of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania is a manuscript letter four pages long. Bearing the names of thirty-nine signers in seventeen towns and cities between Boston and Philadelphia, it describes in brief and urgent detail the tragic events near Boston on April 19,1775, the battles of Lexington and Concord.

The story of the letter's five day journey as it was carried by post rider three hundred and fifty miles through Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey to Philadelphia, and the excitement and reaction to its news, is unique in our nation's history. Although the letter originated in Watertown, Massachusetts, at the eastern end of the Boston-Worcester road, its story begins in Boston about six miles to the southeast.

A meeting of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress was scheduled for April 19th in Concord. Dr. Joseph Warren, in Boston, a zealous champion of American liberty, learned of a British march into the countryside in an effort to disrupt the meeting and to capture the leaders. Warren dispatched William Dawes and Paul Revere by separate routes to warn John Hancock and Samuel Adams in Lexington. While Dawes road toward Lexington, Revere implemented a prearranged plan to alert a series of alarm riders and had two signal lanterns placed in the North Church belfry before setting out for Lexington. Both men reached Lexington

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English letter of April 1775 on the Attack at Lexington and Concord

On Tuesday, the 18th of April, about half past at night Lieutenant Colonel Smith of the Royal Regiment, embarked from the Common at Boston, with the Grenadiers and Light-Infantry, of the Troops there, and landed on the Opposite side, from whence he began his march towards Concord, where he was ordered to destroy the Magazine of Military Stores deposited there for the use of an Army to be Assembled in Order to act against his Majesty and his Government, the Colonel called his Officers together and gave orders that the troops should not fire unless fired upon, and after Marching a few Miles. - Detached six Companies of light Inf." Infantry under the Command of Major Pitcairn to take possession of two Bridges on the other side of Concord, Soon after they heard many signal Guns, and the ringing of Alarm Bells repeatedly, which convinced them that the Country was rising to oppose them, and that it was a preconcerted Scheme to oppose the King's Troops, whenever there should be a favorable opportunity for it. About three O’clock the next Morning, the Troops being advanced within two Miles of Lexington, intelligence was received that about 500 Men in Arms were Assembled and determined to oppose the King's Troops, and, on Major Pitcairn Galloping up to the Head, of the advanced Companies, two Officers informed him, that a Man (advanced from those that were Assembled) had presented his Musquet and attempted to shoot them, but the Piece flashed in the pan.
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