Battles of Lexington and Concord - Old North Bridge
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member cache_test_dummies
N 42° 28.144 W 071° 21.033
19T E 306764 N 4704535
Quick Description: The scene of "the shot heard 'round the world" - the second battle of America's Revolutionary War. The engagement took place in the town of Concord, Massachusetts on April 19th, 1775, between British Army regulars and Massachusetts Militiamen.
Location: Massachusetts, United States
Date Posted: 5/7/2007 12:00:19 PM
Waymark Code: WM1GY3
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member briansnat
Views: 264

Long Description:
On the morning of April 19th, 1775, some 800 British regular forces under the command of Lt. Col. Francis Smith were marching towards Concord, Massachusetts. Having set out on foot from Boston (17 miles to the east) the night before, their objective was to find and capture (or destroy) weapons and ammunition hidden by the rebels forces in Concord, and to imprison any leaders of the rebellion that were encountered.

After easily overcoming light resistance from a small force of militiamen in the first battle of the Revolutionary War (fought on the Lexington village green earlier that morning), the troops advanced to the center of Concord. While British force began a house-to-house search, Smith sent seven companies across the Old North Bridge (a bridge that spanned the Concord River about one half a mile north of Concord center) in an effort to seize supplies hidden at the farm of Col. John Barrett. Three companies of British regulars (a force of approximately 115 men) were left to guard the bridge, and the remainder advanced to Col. Barrett's farm.

On a small hill situated to the west of The North Bridge, five companies of Minutemen and five of non-Minuteman militia (some 500 troops) began to advance towards the British forces positioned near the bridge below. As the militia approached the bridge, they could see smoke rising from Concord. Assuming the British forces were burning down the town (the smoke was actually primarily from the captured military supplies that were being destroyed by the British), the militia set out to save Concord. The British forces withdrew across the bridge to the east. As the militia force approached the bridge, the British fired a volley that killed two of the advancing Minutemen. Major John Buttrick, commanding the militia troops, gave the order to fire, and for the first time in the Revolutionary War, American forces fired a volley into the ranks of British soldiers. Years later, in his poem Concord Hymn, Ralph Waldo Emerson coined the phrase "the shot heard 'round the world" to describe this volley.

The results of the volley were devastating to the British troops (who had erroneously taken up "street firing" posture - a single line running parallel to the bridge and perpendicular to the river), resulting in three deaths and the wounding of four of the eight British officers and ten other troops. Finding themselves outnumbered, the British troops abandoned their wounded, and fled back to Concord.

Interestingly, the remaining British troops, returning from Barrett's farm, were allowed to cross the bridge unharassed as they made their way back to Concord.

By 9:30 in the morning, the battle fought at the Old North Bridge was over, and the stage for another eight years of fighting in the American Revolutionary War was set. For the British troops, the long day was just beginning, as they began their long march down Battle Road (as their return route is now known) under a continuous stream of musket fire, back to the relative safety of the British warships in Boston Harbor.

Today, the Old North Bridge (actually a replica since the original bridge no longer exists) is the one of the main features of the Minute Man National Historic Park. Tourists and history buffs from all over the world visit this location and the many other historic sites in the area, including those found in the park along Battle Road.

Related web sites:

Battles of Lexington and Concord
Old North Bridge
Minute Man National Historic Park
Name of Battle:
Battles of Lexington and Concord - Old North Bridge

Name of War: American Revolutionary War

Entrance Fee: 0.00 (listed in local currency)

Parking: N 42° 28.172 W 071° 20.919

Date(s) of Battle (Beginning): Not listed

Date of Battle (End): Not listed

Visit Instructions:
Post a photo of you in front of a sign or marker posted at the site of the battle (or some other way to indicate you have personally visited the site.

In addition it is encouraged to take a few photos of the surrounding area and interesting features at the site.
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