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Shot Heard 'Round the World

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by mac66, Feb 4, 2013.

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  1. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    Part 7-The Ride

    While Paul Revere was being rowed across the bay to Charlestown, William Dawes had to make his way through the gate blocking entry to the city on Boston neck. He then had to take the long southern road around and then up to Cambridge then west on the road to Lexington. The guards at the gate were ordered not to let anyone in or out but Dawes had developed a relationship with the guards. He may have slipped them a drink, a coin or just a good word and was allowed to pass.

    Paul Revere's boat was quietly rowed and was able to skirt the HMS Somerset by staying in it's moon shadow. Reaching the far shore he was met by his contacts and given a horse named Brown Beauty. The horse chosen because of it's speed and endurance. Looking back toward Boston, Revere and his contacts noticed two lanterns in the North Church steeple. The army was coming by the short route over the river, he needed to hurry.

    Revere's ride was to take him through Charlestown down the Charlestown neck and south into open country where he would pick up the west road north of Cambridge. Clearing Charlestown he swung south and noticed a pair of riders in the road ahead. He slowed and upon realizing they were British Officers, wheeled his horse around and took off across the fields. The officers immediately gave chase. One was eventually bogged down in mud and Revere was able to outrun the other. The choice of Brown Beauty had been a good one.

    The chase had pushed Revere north and fearing other riders he chose to take the north road up to Medford a detour of 5 or 6 miles out of the way. This did however afford him the opportunity to contact local leaders who in turn sent out other rides to spread the word.

    Unlike popular myth, Revere did not ride through the countryside shouting "the British are coming". He and everyone else considered themselves British so it didn't much sense to call them what they themselves were. He also didn't shout out, instead he had a well established fan out notification system in place. He would wake the local leader who in turn would send out more riders. By this method by the end of the night some 80 riders had spread the word to a distance of 100 miles away.

    After Medford, Revere swung south back down to Menotomy (now modern day Arlington) and notified his contacts there. After a short rest he turned west on the road to Lexington. Revere reached Lexington around midnight.

    More....
     
  2. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

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    If you stop now I swear I will drive to Michigan and force you to sit back at your keyboard again.
     
  3. Kansan

    Kansan Member

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    Just imagine how easy his job would have been with Facebook and Twitter ;)
     
  4. Akita1

    Akita1 Member

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    +1 Trent!
     
  5. 6.5x55swedish

    6.5x55swedish Member

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    I believe that the phrase "The shot heard around the world" actually started with the capture of Ft Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain. The Green Mountain Boys led by Ethan Alan caught the fort and in celebration of capturing the cannons and powder stores they filled one of the guns to the end of it's bore with powder and set it off. That was "The shot heard around the world". As we all know those cannons were used to drive the Brits out of Boston.
     
  6. JRH6856

    JRH6856 Member

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    Do you have a citation of this origin? It's the first I've heard of it.

    OTOH, it has long been acknowledged that the first recorded use of the phrase was in the opening stanza of Ralph Waldo Emerson's "Concord Hymn" (1837), and clearly referred to Lexington and Concord.

    The phrase was later used in reference to the shot that killed Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand and set off The First World War.
     
  7. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    According to wikipedia...

    "The "shot heard 'round the world" is a phrase that has come to represent several historical incidents. The line is originally from the opening stanza of Ralph Waldo Emerson's "Concord Hymn" (1837), and referred to the beginning of the American Revolutionary War in the battles of Lexington and Concord. This armed conflict started a chain of events which subsequently led to the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the Thirteen Colonies achieving independence from Britain."

    The "shot" is symbolic of the most significant event in terms of the revolutionary idea that people are free to govern themselves.

    Just an aside.

    Ralph Waldo Emerson's grandfather was a minister in Concord and lived within sight of the North Bridge. He advised the militia, gave them spiritual comfort before the battle and turned his front yard into a makeshift hospital for the wounded. Rev. William Emerson would later write after the battle at the North Bridge...."We we not yet at war, nor were we at peace". At that point the colonists were still only firing when fired upon, all defensive action. The first offensive action would happen a little bit later.

    How's about we get back to the story?
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  8. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    Part 8-Smith's Column

    While Revere was riding west to Lexington, Col. Smith's column was assembling at the water's edge on the south end of Boston. The officers who were present did not know the mission and were only told to get their companies in line but things were not going well. By 10 pm the units that were supposed to being ferried across were still being formed and no progress was being made. Large wooden skiffs were present but there was not enough of them to carry the 700 men across. Col. Smith was not in attendance and arguments broke out among the officers as to who should go first.

    The troops had been issued the standard combat load of 36 rounds of ammo for their .75 cal smooth bore Brown Bess, flint lock muskets. They also carried the requisite 18" triangular bayonet, cartridge box and haversack for food and personal items.

    Col. Smith arrived near midnight and found his troops still on the eastern shore of the Charles River. He quickly got his officers in order and the troops began moving across. The troops were packed shoulder to shoulder in the low skiffs with water all the way up to the gunnels. They were set ashore at a place called Lechmire Point in a marsh at high tide. Many had to wade ashore in waist deep water.

    Once ashore it was learned that food rations had not been issued. A call was put out to the navy to bring rations. The navy responded by clearing out their spoiled and rotten supplies which once issued, the soldiers promptly threw them away.

    Long after Paul Revere had reached Lexington and the militia turned out, the troops were finally ashore and assembled. The orders were given to march west.

    to be continued...
     
  9. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    Part 9-Lexington

    Upon reaching Lexington Paul Revere immediately went to the house of Reverend Jonas Clark. He knew that John Hancock and Sam Adams when warned out of Concord a few days before had retreated to Rev. Clark's house. This house was chosen because Hancock's grandfather had built the church and rectory and served as it's minister for many years before Clark took over. Hancock was well known in the town having spent a great deal of time there with his grandfather.

    Revere was surprised to be stopped by armed militia men as he approached the house. He was told that earlier in the day 8 men on horses identified as army officers had come through town. John Parker the militia captain had ordered the same number of his men to protect Hancock and Adams.

    Revere, Hancock, Adams and Parker met to discuss what to do. Hancock wanted to stay and fight but Adams and Revere talked him out of it. Parker decided he would call out his militia and send scouts east toward Boston to try and locate the column. As they talked, William Dawes, the other rider out of Boston showed up.

    After some rest and food, Adams and Hancock were to leave town as soon as possible while Revere and Dawes would continue their ride to Concord.

    On the road out of town, Revere and Dawes ran into Dr. Samuel Prescott from Concord. Prescott had been in Lexington visiting his fiance' Lydia Mulligan. Prescott informed Revere that he was "a true son of liberty" and would help spread the word. Since he was doctor he knew most of people in Concord and surrounding areas.

    As the trio rode west they noticed a couple riders along the road ahead in the moonlight. Moving forward two more riders appeared from the shadows under the trees. Four more riders suddenly appeared behind them and they realized these men were British officers. Faced with 8 armed men with pistols and nowhere to run Revere and his companions were forced to surrender. The officers, a combination of lieutenants and sergeants forced the men off the road into a stone walled coral. A quick glance among the trio was exchanged and all three spurred their horses forward. Prescott and Dawes managed to clear the wall and escape while Revere's reins were seized by the nearest officer. Revere was caught and ready to pay the price.

    continued...
     
  10. beeenbag

    beeenbag Member

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    man, I hate commercial breaks. Just kiddin, I have never read the story this way, very interesting. Great job.
     
  11. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    Hey, cut me some slack, I'm making this up as I go. Just kidding. :D
     
  12. vagunmonkey

    vagunmonkey Member

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    Paul Revere's Ride

    If you are enjoying Mac66's summary (which I am) you may also want to read "Paul Revere's Ride" by David Hackett Fischer. I believe this is the book used by the RWVA to form the basis of the history portion of their great program.

    Also, if youre not familiar with the organization, check out http://appleseedinfo.org/ well worth the time even for experienced shooters!!!
     
  13. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    Part 10- The Alarm

    Sixteen year old William Diamond lay asleep in his house with his family. He was warm and comfortable under the quilts and blankets huddled together with his brothers and sisters. There was no central heat just a fireplace that had burned down leaving the house cold in the mid April night.

    Suddenly he was shaken awake by his mother. "Billy get up, there is trouble in the village, take your drum." He was still groggy when he and his father started the walk through town. He was also cold in the chilly New England air. He noticed that the same full moon that guided Paul Revere across the river earlier in the night was now high in the sky. He could hear the meeting house bell ringing in the distance.

    As he and his father walked he noticed other people in the houses moving about in the flickering candle light. He noticed other men and boys moving silently along, the bright dots of candle lanterns swaying as they walked.

    One of those boys he saw was Jonathon Harrington. Jonathon was walking with his father and cousin Caleb Harrington. As they reached the town square, known as Lexington Green, his family met at his uncle and namesake's house at the north end of the green.

    Prince Esterbrook was already awake in his shack behind the main house when there was a knock on his door. "You don't have to go" his master said. Prince knew the value of freedom by not having any. As a slave he thought maybe these white men might appreciate what they had if it was in danger of being taken away. He had already decided. He would go. "I am ready," he said as he stood.

    Captain John Parker was 40ish. He was a veteran of the French Indian War. He had been in Roger's Rangers an elite company for it's time and the forerunner of today's Army Rangers. Parker had been elected captain of the Lexington Militia by his friends and neighbors because of his steady hand, resolute demeanor and experience. He watched the men file by singly or in small groups onto the green. When he saw Billy Diamond and the young Jonathon Harrington he walked over to them. He put a hand on each of their shoulders and said, "I need you boys to stay close to me. Billy, beat assembly to call the men in. When they are formed, Jonathon play something on your fife while we wait for the others."

    Diamond the company drummer and Harrington the company fifer did as they were told. Both were only five years old when the trouble started. From the time they could remember all they heard from their elders was about how their liberty was being taken away. They had grown up under the shadow of government oppression and they were both eager to stand up against it no mater what the cost.

    As the men and boys formed that day they had no idea what to expect in the coming hours. Standing in armed defiance to the crown was treason. There was no health insurance or life insurance to help their families if wounded or killed. There was no social security or welfare. The death or disablement of the bread winner in the family meant destitution for the whole family. The was no emergency medical service to respond if wounded. There were no anesthetics to dull the pain. There were no antibiotics to prevent infection.

    The choice was not simple and it's consequence this day was likely the hot lead of a musket ball, the cold steel of the bayonet or the hangman's noose.

    Yet, despite the dangers the women of the town sent their sons and husbands, brothers, fathers and grandfathers. They were as young as 15 years and old as 70. The fathers stood with their sons, nine pairs on the green that morning. Nearly everyone on the green were related either by blood or marriage.

    They stood together as one in defense of liberty.

    to be continued.
     
  14. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    vagunmonkey
    Member

    Paul Revere's Ride
    If you are enjoying Mac66's summary (which I am) you may also want to read "Paul Revere's Ride" by David Hackett Fischer. I believe this is the book used by the RWVA to form the basis of the history portion of their great program.

    Also, if youre not familiar with the organization, check out http://appleseedinfo.org/ well worth the time even for experienced shooters!!!


    Thanks for the bump, vagunmonkey. I was going to share the source at the end. The Fischer book is the main source and I have added some stuff from other sources that I find interesting.

    As I said before, if you like the story come to an Appleseed to hear the rest and to get some great rifle marksmanship instruction. If you think that everyone needs to hear the story, particularly in day and age, contact Appleseed (and/or me) and have them come and do a presentation for your group. We think it is a story everybody in America needs to hear and we need to get the word out.
     
  15. Trent

    Trent Resident Wiseguy

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    Man this is good stuff.

    I've never read the history as personal or vivid as this.

    Keep going man!
     
  16. vagunmonkey

    vagunmonkey Member

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    Sorry, I didn't mean to be a spoiler... I think it's a great book, a very timely story that needs to be retold, and a great program.
     
  17. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    Part 11- The Advance

    Paul Revere stood in the darkness with 8 officers of the kings army surrounding him. A cocked pistol was pressed to his head and the officer demanded his name.

    "I am Paul Revere" he replied. Surprised, the men all looked at each other as if to ask "Paul Revere? THE Paul Revere?"

    "Do not lie to us sir, who are you and what are you doing about this eve?" Asked the leader.

    "I AM Paul Revere and I beg your pardon." He said disgustedly. "I am taking a message to Concord about the column of troops going there to deprive our countrymen of their rights and arms."

    The Lieutenant was startled by this. While he knew a a column was out, he had no knowledge of the mission of Smith's column. His orders were simply to patrol the roads and stop any messengers that might be out. As he pressed Revere for more information Revere readily obliged.

    Back in Lexington, Captain Parker had briefed his men on the green. He had sent scouts east to find the column. As the night wore on the men standing in the cool spring air became tired and restless. The initial surge of adrenaline had worn off and many fought to keep their eyes open. No word had yet come back from the scouts about the location of troops.

    Out on the road Revere was being pressed for more information. He thought that his only chance was to tell the truth but maybe enhance it a little. He began to tell his captors that they had been watching the troops assemble in Boston and knew from the outset the mission. He explained that by now all the supplies they were after in Concord had been removed and hidden. He told them that he had 500 men in Lexington waiting for Smith, the mission would be a disaster.

    Back in Lexington Captain Parker surveyed his men. With no real idea of what was happening he decided to have the men stand down. "Men," he said. "Stand down but stay in town and within the sound of the drum." Many of the men including the Harringtons retreated to Uncle Jonathon Harrington's house on the edge of the green. Others who had come into town from the surrounding countryside were grateful that the proprietors of the Buckman Tavern on the south edge of the green opened its doors to provide food and a chance to warm up. As those men gathered to enter the tavern they unloaded their muskets by firing a volley into the air. The cool damp air worked it's way into the black powder if given a chance. The only way to ensure proper operation was fire the muskets and then reload when the time came to go back out.

    Back on the road, Paul Revere was raising the anxiety of his captors with each telling of the massing of the militia. Suddenly as if on cue, a volley if musket fire came from the direction of Lexington. The startled officers suddenly had to make a decision. Do they execute the prisoner, take him with them or ride quickly back to warn Smith of the ambush? An extra horse would be useful if they chose to warn the column and surely they would be forgiven for not bringing the famous Paul Revere if it meant saving their fellow troops.

    The decision was made. Revere was left on foot as the officers took his horse and raced east hoping to meet Smith before he got to Lexington.

    more later...
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2013
  18. barnbwt

    barnbwt Member

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    I'm on the edge of my seat! (funny, considering this happened 200+ years ago) What happened next?

    ...

    Oh, yeah. Right :O

    I'm sure Mac66 will render the tale more richly than the textbook summary in my noodle :D . I'm particularly enjoying learning which events happened during the day/night; a detail many summaries of important events leave out all too often (except when it's as dramatic as Revere's ride--which is highly dramaticized in modern depictions, as you mentioned). It often helps explain why events happened the way they did if you know the time of day.

    Ready-to-go lines of communication seems like the key strength of the patriots. We may think the task is easier today with the Internet and phones, but as was seen so painfully in the Arab world, those paths of communication are easily severed and intercepted. But a network of trusted persons who know exactly where to spread the message when needed is invaluable.

    As has been my suspicion all along in my cursory studies of the Revolution, the Brits were lazy and simply waited too long to clamp down on the Americans. IIRC, not 30 years before revolt, the Americans were delighted to live under the crown, but decades of neglect and unnecessarily arbitrary treatment produced a populace that had deep resentment toward the crown, and more importantly had already learned to govern itself (more or less).

    The "Salutary Neglect" (I think that was the name) period preceding the war gave the colonists time to form governing structures ahead of the conflict; and I'm convinced that is why the revolt didn't spawn the horrific kind of tyrranical government typically formed out of "people's revolts" that "eats its children."

    Had the colonists not been heavily involved in local governance (to the point of really being the ones who ran day-to-day business), the hastily-assembled revolutionaries would have doubtless put some war-lord up as either a king or dictator, who would have had them promptly disarmed and dissolved to cement his authority. Luckily, the type of government had been roughly hashed-out ahead of time by those running the action, and it was to be representative. It never ceases to amaze me how well our revolution turned out, compared to any other popular revolution before or since (especially sucessful ones).

    Keep up the good work!

    TCB
     
  19. CSC_Saint

    CSC_Saint Member

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    AAARGH! I hate commercial breaks just when it gets REALLY good. More please?
     
  20. xxjumbojimboxx

    xxjumbojimboxx Member

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    Well...

    "As the men and boys formed that day they had no idea what to expect in the coming hours. Standing in armed defiance to the crown was treason. There was no health insurance or life insurance to help their families if wounded or killed. There was no social security or welfare. The death or disablement of the bread winner in the family meant destitution for the whole family. The was no emergency medical service to respond if wounded. There were no anesthetics to dull the pain. There were no antibiotics to prevent infection.

    The choice was not simple and it's consequence this day was likely the hot lead of a musket ball, the cold steel of the bayonet or the hangman's noose.

    Yet, despite the dangers the women of the town sent their sons and husbands, brothers, fathers and grandfathers. They were as young as 15 years and old as 70. The fathers stood with their sons, nine pairs on the green that morning. Nearly everyone on the green were related either by blood or marriage.

    They stood together as one in defense of liberty."


    Cringe... You've really put things in prospective here...


    This story makes me proud to be from massachusetts! Its a solid reminded of the heritage and history that comes out fo that place... When you grow up there you dont think much of it. You'd never know it now a days though...
     
  21. OilyPablo

    OilyPablo Member

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    I got chill just getting into this.

    How about the gun grabbers read this!!??
     
  22. Bobson

    Bobson Member

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    The typical "gun grabber" isn't interested in educating himself. He isn't interested in holding on to the freedom that was won for him, and has no respect for those who fought so he wouldn't have to. He's willing to be a slave if it means he'll have a master who will feed, clothe, and house him. He wants protection from the evil he fears and misunderstands. He's the dog who chooses to stay inside the kennel, because his master will bring him another bowl of dry food in the morning.
     
  23. umadcuzimstylin

    umadcuzimstylin Member

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    ^Too much truth!
     
  24. ccsniper

    ccsniper member

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    I have to sub this!
     
  25. santanzchild

    santanzchild Member

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    I always live a bit of unmolested history.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I727
     
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