With Little Less Than Savage Fury

America’s first civil war took place during the Revolution, an ultra violent, family-splitting, and often vindictive conflict between patriots and loyalists

On April 22, 1775, three days after a British column marched out of Boston and clashed with militiamen at Lexington and Concord, the news—and the cry of Revolution!—reached Danbury, Connecticut, where 18-year-old Stephen Maples Jarvis was working on the family farm. Over the next several days, the young man would confront the hard, consequential choice between joining the rebel patriots or staying loyal to King George. He was not alone; all across the eastern seaboard, others were wrestling with the same dilemma. Read more »

1775, Two Hundred Twenty-Five Years Ago

The Battle of Bunker Hill

Early on the morning of June 17, Gen. Thomas Gage, governor of Massachusetts and commander in chief of British forces in North America, awoke in his Boston home to learn of a serious new threat. On the Charlestown peninsula, which was connected to the mainland by a narrow neck of land, rebel soldiers were building military fortifications on a rise known today as Breed’s Hill. If left alone, they would surely fortify neighboring Bunker Hill as well. Gage conferred with his officers and decided on an immediate attack. Read more »

Lexington And Concord

Sixth in a series of paintings for AMERICAN HERITAGE

The first and most unusual battle of the American Revution began in earnest when the seven hundred British regulars under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Francis Smith left Concord and started back for Boston on the afternoon of April 19, 1775. For sixteen bloody miles the king’s troops got their first taste of a kind of fighting in which all their famous discipline and the terrible rolling volleys that could break armies in the formal patterns of continental warfare would avail them not at all. Read more »

‘Twas The Nineteenth Of April In (18)75 — And The Centennial Was Coming Unstuck

On a new bridge that arched the flood Their toes by April freezes curled, There the embattled committee stood, Beset, it seemed, by half the world.

Captain John Parker’s company of minutemen stood in formation, some seventy strong, waiting on Lexington Green in the dim light of early dawn. They had gathered during the night in response to Paul Revere’s warning that the British were coming. Read more »

Voices Of Lexington And Concord

What was it like to actually be there in April, 1775?
This is how the participants, American and British, remembered it

“When the regulars had arrived within eighty or one hundred rods, they, hearing our drum beat, halted, charged their guns, and doubled their ranks, and marched up at quick step.”
 

Read more »

Rebels And Redcoats

Participants describe the opening of the American Revolution

 

The tension between American colonists and English rulers had at last reached the breaking point. British troops held Boston, and their commander, General Thomas Gage, believed the time had come to put some sort of curb on the rebellious colonial leaders. On an April day in 1775 he sent out a detachment of soldiers to take action against what seemed clearly a rebellious movement.