April 19, 1775 - THE SHOT HEARD AROUND THE WORLD

THE SHOT HEARD AROUND THE WORLD

On April 19, 1775, the American Revolution began in the villages of Lexington and Concord near Boston Massachusetts.

The previous night saw 700 British troops march out of Boston with orders to seize and colonial weapons and Patriot leaders they might find. By dawn the next morning they had reached Lexington where they found 75 American minutemen waiting for them on the village green. Patriot Captain ordered the minutemen "Don't fire unless fired upon, but if they mean to have a war, let it begin here!"

The British commander ordered the Americans to lay down their arms.

"You damned rebels, disperse!" he cried, and the outnumbered colonists grudgingly began to drift away. Suddenly someone fired a shot - no one knows who - And the surprised British ranks let loose a volley. A few seconds later eight dead and ten wounded minutemen lat on Lexington Green.

The redcoats continued up the road to Concord, where hundreds of Americans had gathered. Another small battle ensued before the British decided it was time to return to Boston.


Then the real fighting began. The road back to Lexington became a nightmarish gauntlet of deadly fire for the redcoats as the Americans lay in ambush behind trees, rocks, and woodpiles. The helpless British columns endured the sniping nearly all the way back to Boston.

When the day was over, about 250 of the king's men had been killed or wounded. The colonists lost about 90. News of the conflict caused militiamen all over New England to shoulder their muskets and march towards Boston. The struggle for independence had begun.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote in his poem "Concord Hymn "the Americans had fired the shot heard 'round the world."



Concord Hymn

By Ralph Waldo Emerson
Sung at the Completion of the Battle Monument, July 4, 1837
By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
   Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood
   And fired the shot heard round the world.

The foe long since in silence slept;
   Alike the conqueror silent sleeps;
And Time the ruined bridge has swept
   Down the dark stream which seaward creeps.

On this green bank, by this soft stream,
   We set today a votive stone;
That memory may their deed redeem,
   When, like our sires, our sons are gone.

Spirit, that made those heroes dare
   To die, and leave their children free,
Bid Time and Nature gently spare
   The shaft we raise to them and thee.

Views: 103

Comment by Jerseygal on April 21, 2013 at 5:52am
Thanks Ruth!! I marvel at the strength and courage of our nation's founders.
Comment by Robyn Taylor on April 25, 2013 at 11:38am

Thanks Ruth. Great post my friend. Thanks for the American History lesson. God Bless.

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