Roslindale is not the sort of place you associate with the Revolution, but it turns out a cemetery there, by the side of a road Washington's forces used to ferry supplies from Dedham to Boston, was the... Read more
It's the annual reenactment of the Boston Massacre, tonight at 7 at the Old State House.
J.L. Bell reports a new app maps out key Revolutionary sites in downtown Boston - and that a planned upgrade will include GPS linking, "allowing users to match colonial-era locations with today’s crossroads."
A movie company hired by the Tea Party Museum will film a re-creation of the Battle of Lexington on a field just west of Richmond, Va.
The Herald summons ye olde outrage over the moviemaking, set for next month. As the Herald notes, the Tea Party Museum is getting $21 million in Massachusetts tax subsidies.
On its site, LionHeart FilmWorks claims:
The concentration... Read more
Was it Peter Salem of Framingham or Salem Poor of Andover? J.L. Bell tries to unravel the mystery of the black colonist who put Major Pitcairn in a grave.
Mark recounts how the British attack on the better known historical spots was foreshadowed a month earlier by a similar, if less bloody, march down Centre Street toward Dedham.
His majesty's regiments of foot reasserted their control over the Boston Common today with an encampment and a successful battle against rebel colonists. The encampment continues on Sunday.
A large number of spectators watched the battle for control of the hill at the center of the Common. After... Read more
Boston 1775 begins the saga of Revolutionary War skirmishes over Boston Light, the lighthouse that basically controlled nighttime navigation into Boston Harbor.
J.L. Bell fills us in on the goings on in the Adams household whilst John was off in Europe.
Like sci-fi fans who delight in finding continuity errors in Star Trek episodes, history buffs are enjoying themselves tremendously picking apart HBO's John Adams mini-series, including a sequence involving smallpox, which forced J.L. Bell to admit:
I must confess that I don't know my pus that well.
J.L. Bell compares the Boston Massacre trial on the John Adams mini-series with the historical record, concluding with the possibility that the screenwriters got confused between Oliver Wendell, who had a slave who testified, and Oliver Wendell Holmes, the monicker of two rather more famous Bostonians (one of whom I can thank for the name of this site), neither of whom were even... Read more
J.L. Bell concludes his recounting of Evacuation Day:
... Immediately upon the fleet's sailing the Select Men set off, through the lines, to Roxbury to acquaint General [George] Washington of the evacuation of the town. After sending a message Major [Joseph] Ward aid to General [Artemas] Ward, came to us at the lines and soon after the General himself, who received us in the... Read more
J.L. Bell reports on British preparations on March 15, 1776 to evacuate Boston:
... The General told us the Troops would embark this day and was told by General [James] Robertson it would be by three oclock. The Regiments all mustered, some of them marched down the wharf. Guards and Chevaux De Freze, were placed in the main streets and wharves in order to... Read more
Mark posts a copy of a Boston newspaper ad from Sept. 25, 1777 offering a reward for the return of a slave who escaped from her master in Jamaica Plain.
J.L. Bell reports that while the upcoming HBO mini-series on our own John Adams might be riveting, possibly the most riveting scene of all never happened: A royal customs agent was not tarred and feathered here by a mob acting on the orders of John Hancock (although there was an actual tarring and feathering a year later; Adams represented a defendant in that case,... Read more
J.L. Bell recounts how Boston Harbor almost became the site of the first submarine attack in history.
J.L. Bell reprints part of a flier Revolutionaries set into the wind in the hopes they would flutter down on Redcoats encamped in Boston in 1775 - and on deserters from the American side:
... The notion of provincial militiamen slipping off to the British lines surprises me, not because I see the American cause as obviously just and holy but because the countryside... Read more
J.L. Bell explains why he revised a Wikipedia entry that claimed Framingham was a "center of rebellion" during the years leading up to the Revolution: Basically, because it wasn't.
J.L. Bell reprints a report by Henry Greenleaf, whose father, William, was the first person to ever recite the Declaration of Independence at what is now the Old State House, back in 1776:
... As his voice was rather weak, he requested Colonel [Thomas] Crafts to act as his herald; they stood together at the front of the balcony, and my father read a... Read more
J.L. Bell attempts to squash the heresy that the two-if-by-sea steeple was actually at Old North Meeting-House in North Square.