Friday, October 26, 2007

New names added to Lexington Memorial

Lexington Frieze-Memorial
@ Buckman Tavern
One Bedford St.
Lexington, Mass.

On Saturday October 13, 2007 a ceremony was held to mark the addition of three new names to the Lexington Frieze-Memorial located next to Buckman Tavern, which is adjacent to Lexington Green. The ceremony was hosted by the Lexington Training Band and featured a wreath laying ceremony and the firing of musket volleys. The names added to the already existing list are: Thaddeus Bowman, Sgt. Francis Brown and Nathaniel Bowman. Sgt. Brown was wounded in the afternoon of April 19, 1775 and Nathaniel Bowman was killed that same day. This memorial is dedicated to those men who gathered on Lexington Green in the early hours of April 19,1775 and defied, albeit briefly, the British Crown's forces. Eight members of the militia lost their lives either on the Green or its immediate environs that morning and eleven were wounded.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Jason Russell House

The Jason Russell House
7 Jason St.
Arlington, Mass.

This 18th century home is best known for the fighting that took place here on the afternoon of April 19, 1775. After engagements that morning on Lexington Green and at the North Bridge in Concord the remnants of a 700-man expeditionary force of British soldiers and Marines, along with a relief force of an additional 1,000 troops, were attempting to make their way back to Boston.

Thousands of militia from the surrounding communities, many in organized companies, but some coming singly or in small groups, were laying in ambush all along their route. A mixed group of militia, including men from as far away as Woburn and Danvers, decided to make their stand at the Russell homestead.

As they proceeded along Concord Road (what is now Mass. Ave.) the British Regulars sent out flankers to clear the houses that lined the road of any opposition. This brutal house to house fighting resulted in the deaths of many in Menotomy (present-day Arlington) and Cambridge.

Here at the Russell homestead British Light Infantry engaged the militia in some of the bitterest fighting of the day. Jason Russell was bayoneted several times and died just outside his home. Ten other men of the militia, including seven men from Danvers, also perished as well as two British soldiers.

Members of the Russell family lived here until 1896. It is now owned and operated by the Arlington Historical Society.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

British Surrender at Saratoga

Surrender at Saratoga
by John Trumball

Next Wednesday (October 17) marks the 230th anniversary of the surrender of British forces under General Burgoyne near Saratoga, New York. This defeat is considered a major turning point in the war and led to the French openly siding with the American colonists in their rebellion against the Crown.