Lexington and Concord

In early April 1775, General Thomas Gage, commander of British troops in Boston, received orders from the British government to arrest prominent Patriot leaders in Massachusetts as well as to confiscate military supplies local militia units were stockpiling. Although Gage had warned to the contrary, British leaders confidently held that a strong show of force would destroy any and all American resistance.

On April 19, 1775, Gage ordered a detachment of troops to Concord where to American arms and ammunition were secretly stored. Although the British march on Lexington and Concord are well-known, the bloody events of this day not only started the Revolutionary War, but they also illustrated the American committment to an armed struggle.

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  • Lexington and Concord: The Beginning of the War of the American Revolution by Arthur Bernon Tourtellot

    In a minute-by-minute account, this popular book gives a vivid picture of what actually happened on April 19, 1775.

  • A People Numerous and Armed: Reflections on the Military Struggle for American Independence by John Shy

    Publisher's Description: Americans like to think of themselves as a peaceful and peace-loving people, and in remembering their own revolutionary past, American historians have long tended to focus on colonial origins and Constitutional aftermath, neglecting the fact that the American…

  • Reconsiderations on the Revolutionary War: Selected Essays by Don Higginbotham

    See especially Ira D. Gruber, "British Strategy: the Theory and Practice of Eighteenth-Century Warfare."

  • The Minutemen and Their World by Robert A. Gross

    Publisher's Summary: On April 19, 1775, the American Revolution began at the Old North Bridge in Concord, Massachusetts. The "shot heard round the world" catapulted this sleepy New England town into the midst of revolutionary fervor, and Concord went on…

  • Paul Revere's Ride by David Hackett Fischer

    Publisher's Description: Paul Revere's midnight ride looms as an almost mythical event in American history--yet it has been largely ignored by scholars and left to patriotic writers and debunkers. Now one of the foremost American historians offers the first serious…

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  • American Revolutionary War by Phil Hamilton

    The American victory in the Revolutionary War was one of the most stunning events of the eighteenth century. Although committed to the cause of independence, American patriots entered the conflict disorganized, ill-equipped and facing a formidable foe. Thus, the American…