Lexington and Concord: The Battle Heard Round the World by George C. DaughanGeorge C. Daughan’s magnificently detailed account of the battle of Lexington and Concord challenges the prevailing narrative of the American War of Independence. It was, Daughan argues, based as much on economic concerns as political ones. When Massachusetts militiamen turned out in overwhelming numbers to fight the British, they believed they were fighting for their farms and livelihoods, as well as for liberty. In the eyes of many American colonists, Britain’s repressive measures were not simply an effort to reestablish political control of the colonies, but also a means to reduce the prosperous colonists to the serfdom Benjamin Franklin witnessed on his tour of Ireland and Scotland. Authoritative and thoroughly researched, Lexington and Concord is a “worthy resource for history buffs seeking a closer look at what drove the start of the American Revolution” (Booklist).
Battle of Lexington and Concord
Battles of Lexington and Concord , April 19, , initial skirmishes between British regulars and American provincials, marking the beginning of the American Revolution. It is unclear who fired the first shot. Resistance melted away at Lexington, and the British moved on to Concord. Most of the American military supplies had been hidden or destroyed before the British troops arrived. The march back to Boston was a genuine ordeal for the British, with Americans continually firing on them from behind roadside houses, barns, trees, and stone walls. Total losses were British , American
The previous battle in the British Battles sequence is the Battle of Quebec Militia were commanded by Barrett, Buttrick, Robinson and many others.
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On the evening of 18 April the British military governor of Massachusetts sent out from Boston a detachment of about regular troops to destroy military stores collected by the colonists at Concord. At sunrise on 19 April, the detachment found a part of the minuteman company already assembled on the Lexington green. At the command of British Major John Pitcairn, the regulars fired and cleared the ground. Eight Americans were killed and 10 were wounded. The regulars marched for Concord after a short delay. At Concord the outnumbered Americans retired over the North Bridge and waited for reinforcements. The British occupied the town, held the North Bridge with about regulars, and searched for stores to burn.
Facing the threat of rebellion, British General Thomas Gage hoped to prevent violence by ordering the seizure of weapons and powder being stored in Concord, Massachusetts, twenty miles northwest of Boston. Waiting to greet them was a small company of militia commanded by Captain John Parker. A shot rang out — historians still debate who pulled the trigger. Nervous British soldiers then fired a volley, killing seven militiamen and mortally wounding another. By the time the British arrived at the North Bridge, a force of almost colonial militiamen from Concord and the surrounding area had gathered on the high ground across the river.
Tensions had been building for many years between residents of the 13 American colonies and the British authorities, particularly in Massachusetts. On the night of April 18, , hundreds of British troops marched from Boston to nearby Concord in order to seize an arms cache. Paul Revere and other riders sounded the alarm, and colonial militiamen began mobilizing to intercept the Redcoat column. A confrontation on the Lexington town green started off the fighting, and soon the British were hastily retreating under intense fire. Many more battles followed, and in the colonists formally won their independence. Starting in , Great Britain enacted a series of measures aimed at raising revenue from its 13 American colonies. Soon after, the British Parliament declared that Massachusetts was in open rebellion.