Paul Revere House

Paul Revere House


We are searching data for your request:

Forums and discussions:
Manuals and reference books:
Data from registers:
Wait the end of the search in all databases.
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.

Paul Revere House was the home of goldsmith/silversmith and founding father Paul Revere and his family from 1770 to 1800.

Paul Revere House history

In 1774 and 1775, during the build up to the American Revolution, Paul Revere was tasked as an express rider on behalf of the Massachusetts Committee of Safety and the Boston Committee of Correspondence.

This role would lead him to perform one of the most famous rides in American history. On the eve of 18 April 1775, Revere was called upon to ride to Lexington, Massachusetts to warn John Hancock and Samuel Adams that British forces were on their way to detain them. It is Paul Revere whose famous words are said to have been “The British are coming!”, raising the alarm and allowing the Americans to prepare for battle.

Paul Revere was soon arrested himself, but later escaped and witnessed the Battle of Lexington. Purchased by Paul Revere’s grandson in 1902, Paul Revere House is now a museum about this patriotic icon, detailing his life and his famous midnight ride.

Paul Revere House today

Paul Revere house has been reconstructed to look just as it would have in the eighteenth century and most of the architecture is original. Tours are self guided, with panels and explanations provided with plaques and illustrations. Paul Revere House also forms part of the Freedom Trail, a tour of all of Boston’s most famous American Revolution sites as well as being part of Boston National Historic Park.

Visits take approximately 30-45 minutes. Next door to Paul Revere House is the Pierce Hitchborn House, an authentic example of Georgian architecture.

Getting to Paul Revere House

The Paul Revere House is located on the Freedom Trail between Faneuil Hall and Old North Church. The house is also within easy walking distance of other attractions — the New England Aquarium, City Hall Plaza and the Boston Common.

Our site can be reached by car, but the narrow one-way streets and very limited parking make the subway, walking, and bicycle the best options.

If travelling by foot on the Freedom Trail in Boston’s North End, follow the signs and the red brick line on the sidewalks. The site is ten minutes from Faneuil Hall / Quincy Market. If travelling by Subway, Government Center is the closest stop to the House.

Street parking near the Revere House is very limited. There are metered spots on Commercial Street. Parking is available in pay lots marked P on the map.


On the evening of April 18, 1775 Boston artisan and Patriot Paul Revere set out from his home in North Square to warn Samuel Adams and John Hancock of their potential arrest by a detachment of British Soldiers. There were dozens of riders that night spreading the general alarm, but following the publication of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's "Paul Revere's Ride" in 1860 Paul Revere became an American legend. Because this was the home of the famous "Midnight Rider" and silversmith, early preservationists raised money to purchase and preserve the home as a historic site. Though the Revere family only lived in the house for about twenty years, they lived there during the Revolution - the most transformative and uncertain era of their generation.

Visiting Information

The Paul Revere House is a Boston National Historical Park partner site operated by the Paul Revere Memorial Association

The house is accessible on the first floor via the courtyard ramps. The second floor is accessed by taking the elevator in the visitor center and then connecting to the house via the walkway.


Contents

Revere was born in the North End of Boston on December 21, 1734, according to the Old Style calendar then in use, or January 1, 1735, in the modern calendar. [3] His father, a French Huguenot born Apollos Rivoire came to Boston at the age of 13 and was apprenticed to the silversmith John Coney. [4] By the time he married Deborah Hitchborn, a member of a long-standing Boston family that owned a small shipping wharf, in 1729, Rivoire had anglicized his name to Paul Revere. Their son, Paul Revere, was the third of 12 children and eventually the eldest surviving son. [2] Revere grew up in the environment of the extended Hitchborn family, and never learned his father's native language. [5] At 13 he left school and became an apprentice to his father. The silversmith trade afforded him connections with a cross-section of Boston society, which would serve him well when he became active in the American Revolution. [6] As for religion, although his father attended Puritan services, Revere was drawn to the Church of England. [7] In 1750, aged 15, Revere was part of the first group of change ringers to ring the new bells (cast in 1744) at Christ Church, in the north of Boston (the Old North Church). [8] [9] Revere eventually began attending the services of the political and provocative Jonathan Mayhew at the West Church. [7] His father did not approve, and as a result father and son came to blows on one occasion. Revere relented and returned to his father's church, although he did become friends with Mayhew, and returned to the West Church in the late 1760s. [10]

Revere's father died in 1754, when Paul was legally too young to officially be the master of the family silver shop. [11] In February 1756, during the French and Indian War (the North American theater of the Seven Years' War), he enlisted in the provincial army. Possibly he made this decision because of the weak economy, since army service promised consistent pay. [12] Commissioned a second lieutenant in a provincial artillery regiment, he spent the summer at Fort William Henry at the southern end of Lake George in New York as part of an abortive plan for the capture of Fort St. Frédéric. He did not stay long in the army, but returned to Boston and assumed control of the silver shop in his own name. On August 4, 1757, he married Sarah Orne (1736–1773) their first child was born eight months later. [13] He and Sarah had eight children, but two died young, and only one, Mary, survived her father. [14]

Revere's business began to suffer when the British economy entered a recession in the years following the Seven Years' War, and declined further when the Stamp Act of 1765 resulted in a further downturn in the Massachusetts economy. [15] Business was so poor that an attempt was made to seize his property in late 1765. [16] To help make ends meet he even took up dentistry, a skill set he was taught by a practicing surgeon who lodged at a friend's house. [17] One client was Joseph Warren, a local physician and political opposition leader with whom Revere formed a close friendship. [18] [19] Revere and Warren, in addition to having common political views, were also both active in the same local Masonic lodges. [20]

Although Revere was not one of the "Loyal Nine"—organizers of the earliest protests against the Stamp Act—he was well connected with its members, who were laborers and artisans. [21] Revere did not participate in some of the more raucous protests, such as the attack on the home of Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson. [22] In 1765, a group of militants who would become known as the Sons of Liberty formed, of which Revere was a member. [23] [24] From 1765 on, in support of the dissident cause, he produced engravings and other artifacts with political themes. Among these engravings are a depiction of the arrival of British troops in 1768 (which he termed "an insolent parade") and a famous depiction of the March 1770 Boston Massacre (see illustration). Although the latter was engraved by Revere and he included the inscription, "Engraved, Printed, & Sold by Paul Revere Boston", it was modeled on a drawing by Henry Pelham, and Revere's engraving of the drawing was colored by a third man and printed by a fourth. [25] Revere also produced a bowl commemorating the Massachusetts assembly's refusal to retract the Massachusetts Circular Letter. (This letter, adopted in response to the 1767 Townshend Acts, called for united colonial action against the acts. King George III had issued a demand for its retraction.) [25]

In 1770 Revere purchased a house on North Square in Boston's North End. Now a museum, the house provided space for his growing family while he continued to maintain his shop at nearby Clark's Wharf. [27] Sarah died in 1773, and on October 10 of that year, Revere married Rachel Walker (1745–1813). They had eight children, three of whom died young. [28]

In November 1773 the merchant ship Dartmouth arrived in Boston harbor carrying the first shipment of tea made under the terms of the Tea Act. [29] This act authorized the British East India Company to ship tea (of which it had huge surpluses due to colonial boycotts organized in response to the Townshend Acts) directly to the colonies, bypassing colonial merchants. Passage of the act prompted calls for renewed protests against the tea shipments, on which Townshend duties were still levied. [30] Revere and Warren, as members of the informal North End Caucus, organized a watch over the Dartmouth to prevent the unloading of the tea. Revere took his turns on guard duty, [31] and was one of the ringleaders in the Boston Tea Party of December 16, when colonists dumped tea from the Dartmouth and two other ships into the harbor. [32]

From December 1773 to November 1775, Revere served as a courier for the Boston Committee of Public Safety, traveling to New York and Philadelphia to report on the political unrest in Boston. Research has documented 18 such rides. Notice of some of them was published in Massachusetts newspapers, and British authorities received further intelligence of them from Loyalist Americans. [33] In 1774, his cousin John on the island of Guernsey wrote to Paul that John had seen reports of Paul's role as an "express" (courier) in London newspapers. [34]

In 1774, the military governor of Massachusetts, General Thomas Gage, dissolved the provincial assembly on orders from Great Britain. Governor Gage also closed the port of Boston and all over the city forced private citizens to quarter (provide lodging for) soldiers in their homes. [N 2]

During this time, Revere and a group of 30 "mechanics" began meeting in secret at his favorite haunt, the Green Dragon, to coordinate the gathering and dissemination of intelligence by "watching the Movements of British Soldiers". [35] Around this time Revere regularly contributed politically charged engravings to the recently founded Patriot monthly, Royal American Magazine. [36]

He rode to Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in December 1774 upon rumors of an impending landing of British troops there, a journey known in history as the Portsmouth Alarm. [37] Although the rumors were false, his ride sparked a rebel success by provoking locals to raid Fort William and Mary, defended by just six soldiers, for its gunpowder supply. [38]

Because Boston was besieged after the battles of Lexington and Concord, Revere could not return to the city, which was now firmly in British hands. He boarded in Watertown, where he was eventually joined by Rachel and most of his children (Paul Jr., then 15, remained in Boston to mind the family properties). [39] After he was denied a commission in the Continental Army, he tried to find other ways to be useful to the rebel cause. He was retained by the provincial congress as a courier, and he printed local currency which the congress used to pay the troops around Boston. [40]

Since there was a desperate shortage of gunpowder, the provincial congress decided in November 1775 to send him to Philadelphia to study the working of the only powder mill in the colonies, in the hopes that he might be able to build a second one in Massachusetts. Revere called on the mill's owner, Oswald Eve, armed with a letter from Continental Congressmen Robert Morris and John Dickinson asking Eve to "Chearfully & from Public Spirited Motives give Mr. Revere such information as will inable him to Conduct the business on his return home." [43] [44] Eve showed Revere around the mill, but refused to give him detailed drawings unless he was first paid a substantial bribe. Despite this chilly reception, Revere was able to discern useful information from the visit. He also acquired, through the work of Samuel Adams, plans for another powder mill. This information enabled Revere to set up a powder mill at Stoughton (present-day Canton). [43] [45] The mill produced tons of gunpowder for the Patriot cause. [46]

Revere's friend and compatriot Joseph Warren was killed in the Battle of Bunker Hill on June 17, 1775. [47] Because soldiers killed in battle were often buried in mass graves without ceremony, Warren's grave was unmarked. On March 21, 1776, several days after the British army left Boston, Revere, Warren's brothers, and a few friends went to the battlefield and found a grave containing two bodies. [48] After being buried for nine months, Warren's face was unrecognizable, but Revere was able to identify Warren's body because he had placed a false tooth in Warren's mouth, and recognized the wire he had used for fastening it. Warren was given a proper funeral and reburied in a marked grave. [49]

Militia service

Upon returning to Boston in 1776, Revere was commissioned a major of infantry in the Massachusetts militia in that April, and transferred to the artillery a month later. [50] In November he was promoted to lieutenant colonel, and was stationed at Castle William, defending Boston harbor. He was generally second or third in the chain of command, and on several occasions he was given command of the fort. [50] He applied his engineering skills to maintaining the fort's armaments, even designing and building a caliper to accurately measure cannonballs and cannon bore holes. [50] The service at Castle William was relatively isolated, and personality friction prompted some men to file complaints against Revere. [51] The boredom was alleviated in late August 1777 when Revere was sent with a troop of soldiers to escort prisoners taken in the Battle of Bennington to Boston, where they were confined on board prison ships, [52] [53] and again in September when he was briefly deployed to Rhode Island. [54]

In August 1778 Revere's regiment served in a combined Franco-American expedition whose objective was to capture the British base at Newport, Rhode Island. [55] His regiment was responsible for erecting and maintaining artillery batteries on Aquidneck Island. [56] The attempt was abandoned by the French when their fleet was scattered in a storm, and Revere's regiment returned to Boston before the British sortied from Newport to force the Battle of Rhode Island. [57]

Penobscot disaster

The British in June 1779 established a new base on Penobscot Bay in present-day Maine (which was then part of Massachusetts). [58] Massachusetts authorities called out the militia, pressed into service available shipping, and organized a major expedition to dislodge the British. [59] The expedition was a complete fiasco: its land and naval commanders squabbled over control of the expedition, and could not agree on strategy or tactics. The arrival of British reinforcements led to the destruction of the entire Massachusetts fleet. [60] Revere commanded the artillery units for the expedition, and was responsible for organizing the artillery train. [61] He participated in the taking of Bank's Island, from which artillery batteries could reach the British ships anchored before Fort George. He next oversaw the transport of the guns from Bank's Island to a new position on the heights of the Bagaduce Peninsula that commanded the fort. [62] Although Revere was in favor of storming the fort, Brigadier General Solomon Lovell opted for a siege instead. After further disagreements on how to proceed between Lovell and fleet commander Dudley Saltonstall, Lovell decided to return to the transports on August 12, a decision supported by Revere. [63]

Late the next day British sails were spotted. A mad scramble ensued, and on the 14th the fleet was in retreat heading up the Penobscot River. Revere and his men were put ashore with their stores, and their transports destroyed. At one point Brigadier General Peleg Wadsworth ordered Revere to send his barge in an attempt to recover a ship drifting toward the enemy position. Revere at first resisted, but eventually complied, and Wadsworth told him to expect formal charges over the affair. [64] The incident separated Revere from his men. Moving overland, he eventually managed to regroup most of his troops, and returned to Boston on August 26. A variety of charges were made against Revere, some of which were exaggerated assignments of blame [65] made by enemies he had made in his command at Castle William. The initial hearings on the matter in September 1779 were inconclusive, but he was asked to resign his post. [65] He repeatedly sought a full court-martial to clear his name, but it was not until February 1782 that a court martial heard the issue, exonerating him. [66] [67]

Business and social connections

During the Revolutionary War, Revere continued his efforts to move upwards in society into the gentry. After his failed efforts to become a military officer he attempted to become a merchant, but was hindered by a number of factors: while he was a fairly well-off member of the artisan class, he did not have the resources to afford the goods he would have sold as a merchant, nor were lenders in England willing to lend him the required startup capital. Other American merchants of the time were able to continue their business with colleagues in England. However, Revere's inexperience as a merchant meant that he had not yet established such relationships and was not able to communicate as effectively on unfamiliar matters. Another factor preventing Revere's success as a merchant was the economic climate of the time period after the war known as the Confederation Period while the colonies had seen a time of economic growth before the war, the colonies experienced a severe post-war depression, constraining the overall success of his business. [68]

While Revere struggled as a merchant, his success as a silversmith enabled him to pursue and leverage more advanced technological developments for the purposes of mass production. For example, rolling mills greatly improved the productivity of his silver shop and enabled his business to move further away from manufacturing high-end customized products in order to focus instead on the production of a more standardized set of goods. [69] In the 18th century, the standard of living continuously improved in America, as genteel goods became increasingly available to the masses. [70] Revere responded particularly well to this trend because his business was not solely manufacturing custom, high end purchases. Smaller products like teaspoons and buckles accounted for the majority of his work, allowing him to build a broad customer base. [71]

Revere's increased efficiency left financial and human resources available for the exploration of other products, which was essential to overcoming the fluctuating post-war economic climate. [72] In addition to increasing production, the flatting mill enabled Revere to move towards a more managerial position. [73]

After the war, Revere became interested in metal work beyond gold and silver. By 1788 he had invested some of the profits from his growing silverworking trade to construct a large furnace, which would allow him to work with larger quantities of metals at higher temperatures. He soon opened an iron foundry in Boston's North End that produced utilitarian cast iron items such as stove backs, fireplace tools, and sash-window weights, marketed to a broad segment of Boston's population. [74] Many of Revere's business practices changed when he expanded his practice into ironworking, because he transitioned from just being an artisan to also being an entrepreneur and a manager. In order to make this transition successfully, Revere had to invest substantial quantities of capital and time in his foundry. [75]

Technological practices

The quasi-industrialization of his practice set Revere apart from his competition. "Revere's rapid foundry success resulted from fortuitous timing, innate technical aptitude, thorough research, and the casting experience he gained from silverworking." [76] This technical proficiency allowed Revere to optimize his work and adapt to a new technological and entrepreneurial model. Revere's location also benefited his endeavors. Revere was entering the field of iron casting in a time when New England cities were becoming centers of industry. The nature of technological advancement was such that many skilled entrepreneurs in a number of fields worked together, in what is known by Nathan Rosenberg as technological convergence, by which a number of companies work together on challenges in order to spur advances. [77] By accessing the knowledge of other nearby metal workers, Revere was able to successfully explore and master new technologies throughout his career.

Labor practices

One of the biggest changes for Revere in his new business was organization of labor. In his earlier days, Revere primarily utilized the apprenticeship model standard for artisan shops at this time, but as his business expanded he hired employees (wage laborers) to work for his foundry. Many manufacturers of the era found this transition from master to employer difficult because many employees at the onset of the Industrial Revolution identified themselves as skilled workers, and thus wanted to be treated with the respect and autonomy accorded to artisans. An artisan himself, Revere managed to avoid many of these labor conflicts by adopting a system of employment that still held trappings of the craft system in the form of worker freedoms such as work hour flexibility, wages in line with skill levels, and liquor on the job. [78]

Manufacturing: church bells, cannon, and copper products

After mastering the iron casting process and realizing substantial profits from this new product line, Revere identified a burgeoning market for church bells in the religious revival known as the Second Great Awakening that followed the war. Beginning in 1792 he became one of America's best-known bell casters, working with sons Paul Jr. and Joseph Warren Revere in the firm Paul Revere & Sons. This firm cast the first bell made in Boston and ultimately produced hundreds of bells, a number of which remain in operation to this day. [79]

In 1794, Revere decided to take the next step in the evolution of his business, expanding his bronze casting work by learning to cast cannon for the federal government, state governments, and private clients. Although the government often had trouble paying him on time, its large orders inspired him to deepen his contracting and seek additional product lines of interest to the military. [80]

By 1795, a growing percentage of his foundry's business came from a new product, copper bolts, spikes, and other fittings that he sold to merchants and the Boston naval yard for ship construction. In 1801, Revere became a pioneer in the production of rolled copper, opening North America's first copper mill south of Boston in Canton. Copper from the Revere Copper Company was used to cover the original wooden dome of the Massachusetts State House in 1802. His copper and brass works eventually grew, through sale and corporate merger, into a large corporation, Revere Copper and Brass, Inc. [81]

Steps towards standardized production

During his earlier days as an artisan, especially when working with silver products, Revere produced "bespoke" or customized goods. As he shifted to ironworking, he found the need to produce more standardized products, because this made production cheaper. [82] To achieve the beginnings of standardization, Revere used identical molds for casting, especially in the fabrication of mass-produced items such as stoves, ovens, frames, and chimney backs. [83] However, Revere did not totally embrace uniform production. For example, his bells and cannons were all unique products: these large objects required extensive fine-tuning and customization, and the small number of bells and cannon minimized the potential benefits of standardizing them. [84] In addition, even the products that he made in large quantities could not be truly standardized due to technological and skill limitations. His products were rarely (if ever) identical, but his processes were well systematized. "He came to realize that the foundry oven melded the characteristics of tools and machines: it required skilled labor and could be used in a flexible manner to produce different products, but an expert could produce consistent output by following a standard set of production practices." [76]

Freemasonry

Revere was a Scottish Freemason. He was a member of Lodge St Andrews, No.81, (Boston, Massachusetts). The Lodge continues to meet in Boston with the number 4 under and the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Massachusetts. The date he joined the Lodge is not known but was sometime after the inauguration of the Lodge on St Andrew's Day, November 30, 1756 and May 15, 1769 when he is recorded in the Grand Lodge of Scotland membership register as the Lodge Secretary. Joseph Warren and William Palfrey are also recorded, on the same page, as members of the Lodge and being Master and Senior Warden respectively. (see image) [85] [86]

He subsequently became the Grand Master of the Freemasons of Massachusetts when a box containing an assemblage of commemorative items was deposited under the cornerstone of the Massachusetts State House on July 4, 1795 by Governor Samuel Adams, assisted by Grand Master Revere and Deputy Grand Master, Colonel William Scollay. [87]

Politics and final years

Revere remained politically active throughout his life. His business plans in the late 1780s were often stymied by a shortage of adequate money in circulation. Alexander Hamilton's national policies regarding banks and industrialization exactly matched his dreams, and he became an ardent Federalist committed to building a robust economy and a powerful nation. Of particular interest to Revere was the question of protective tariffs he and his son sent a petition to Congress in 1808 asking for protection for his sheet copper business. [88] He continued to participate in local discussions of political issues even after his retirement in 1811, and in 1814 circulated a petition offering the government the services of Boston's artisans in protecting Boston during the War of 1812. [89] Revere died on May 10, 1818, at the age of 83, at his home on Charter Street in Boston. [90] He is buried in the Granary Burying Ground on Tremont Street. [91] [92]

After Revere's death, the family business was taken over by his oldest surviving son, Joseph Warren Revere. [93] The copper works founded in 1801 continues today as the Revere Copper Company, with manufacturing divisions in Rome, New York and New Bedford, Massachusetts. [94]

Revere's original silverware, engravings, and other works are highly regarded today, and can be found on display in museums including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston [95] and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. [96] The Revere Bell, presented in 1843 to the Church of St. Andrew in Singapore by his daughter, Mrs. Maria Revere Balestier, wife of American consul Joseph Balestier, is now displayed in the National Museum of Singapore. This is the only bell cast by the Revere foundry that is outside the United States. For a time, it was displayed behind velvet ropes in the foyer of the United States Embassy in Singapore. [97]

The communities of Revere, Massachusetts [98] and Revere, Minnesota [99] bear his name, as do Revere Beach [98] in Revere, Massachusetts Revere Avenue in The Bronx, New York City [100] Paul Revere Road in Arlington, Massachusetts [101] and Paul Revere Apartments [102] in Seattle.

A 25-cent 1958 U.S. postage stamp in the Liberty Series honors Paul Revere, featuring the portrait by Gilbert Stuart. He also appears on the $5,000 Series EE U.S. Savings Bond. [103] Ryan Reynolds releases a Mint Moble commercial that features Avery Revere, a direct descent of Paul Revere. [104]

In popular culture

In episode 8 of the 2nd season of the US TV show The West Wing (1999–2006), Paul Revere is named as the manufacturer of president Bartlet's knife-set he presents to Charlie, his personal aide.

Revere appears in the 2012 video game Assassin's Creed III and is portrayed by Bruce Dinsmore. It is fictitiously depicted as the game's protagonist Ratonhnaké:ton and Revere rode to alert the colonial militia. [105]


Revere's midnight ride was his only notable patriotic action

Because most people's conception of Paul Revere comes from Longfellow's 1860 poem which focuses singularly on the events of the night of April 18, 1755, Revere's ride is the only action for which the man is widely known. As the Paul Revere House points out, however, the events of that fateful night are only a blip within a life full of notable contributions to industry, politics, and public service.

It's generally known that Revere's primary occupation was as a silversmith, and this is true. His hugely successful shop was well-regarded for the quality of its intricate work at the time and still is today. However, his shop also included copper plates for engravings, through which Revere produced, among a broad range of other things, political illustrations, including a famous engraving of the Boston Massacre.

Revere's business connections led to his involvement in political affairs, including joining the Sons of Liberty and working as a spy and courier for multiple revolutionary committees, delivering messages directly to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia. He was also a member of the North Caucus, which organized and led protests against the British East India Company's tea shipments to keep the company from delivering its tea directly to colonists, bypassing colonial merchants. When this protest escalated into dudes just straight-up dumping the tea into the harbor (you might have heard about this), Revere was one of the ringleaders.


The Court-Martial of Paul Revere

Four years after Revere rode through the Massachusetts countryside warning that the British were on the march to Lexington, the war for American independence dragged on. In June 1779, the British seized the village of Castine, Maine, on the shores of Penobscot Bay with the intention of establishing a naval base between Halifax and New York from which they could launch attacks.

The Massachusetts legislature ordered a combined military and naval expedition to sail north to Maine, part of Massachusetts at the time, to dislodge the British. Among the hundreds of troops was Lieutenant Colonel Paul Revere, who had joined the Massachusetts militia after being denied a Continental Army commission in 1776. The attack force was a raw, rag-tag bunch—Revere, who commanded the state’s artillery regiment, reported “one-third of them were boys and old men”𠅋ut they still had a decisive advantage in numbers and firepower. Continental Navy Commodore Dudley Saltonstall was given a fleet of 19 armed vessels including three Continental Navy ships and the entire Massachusetts Navy, which was composed of three ships. Combined with the 21 transports, the patriot naval force was the largest of the war.

The American flotilla sailed into Penobscot Bay on July 25, 1779, and the enormous amphibious assault began with a difficult landing on the mainland. After some fierce fighting, Revere and 600 militiamen under the command of General Solomon Lovell found themselves just a few hundred yards away from the British earthen fort and in striking distance to overrun the enemy. At this point, however, the patriot land and naval officers gridlocked on strategy. Lovell refused to storm the fort unless Saltonstall’s warships attacked the British armed sloops in the bay to provide them with cover. Saltonstall refused to engage the British fleet until Lovell had taken the fort. The stalemate dragged on for two weeks until a British relief fleet arrived on August 13 and left the patriots pinned inside Penobscot Bay.

The Americans beat a chaotic retreat. The patriots fled up the Penobscot River and burned their entire flotilla to avoid capture. Revere’s men made a mad scramble into the Maine wilderness and were left to find their ways back to Boston. Hundreds of militiamen were killed or captured. The military fiasco was one of the most disastrous campaigns of the Revolution. A scapegoat was needed, and Revere was typecast for the part.

The silversmith was not popular among the troops. Revere’s aggressive command and perceived arrogance rankled many of his subordinates as well as his fellow military officers. Some used the debacle to settle old scores and accused him of insubordination, neglect of duty and cowardice.

Brigadier General Peleg Wadsworth charged that Revere disobeyed his order to give up his ordnance brig in order to evacuate the crew of a schooner drifting toward the enemy. Wadsworth said that Revere argued that the brigadier general had no right to command him and also said that the boat could not be used because it was carrying his private baggage. Major William Todd also said that Revere had refused an order he delivered from Lovell to have his men retrieve a cannon from one of the islands in the bay. While Revere acknowledged initially refusing the order from Wadsworth before following it, he chalked the charges up to personal grievances.

Shortly after he returned to Boston and resumed his command, Revere was placed under house arrest on September 6 until the failed expedition was investigated. Saltonstall was court-martialed and dismissed from the Continental Navy, but the investigating committee did not rule one way or another on Revere’s culpability. The attacks on his integrity and patriotism still lingered.

With his character besmirched, Revere actually pressed for a court-martial to clear his name. His time would come, but it was more than two years later in 1782, by which time the British had surrendered at Yorktown and many had forgotten about the incident. The primary charges leveled at Revere during the court-martial were that he refused Wadsworth’s order to deliver his boat and that he fled Penobscot Bay without receiving any orders to do so. Revere argued that he did what he thought necessary to evacuate his men safely to Boston. The 13-officer military court agreed and acquitted him on both charges after deciding that the army was in such a confused state during the retreat that regular orders could not be given. Revere, in spite of 𠇎very disgrace that the malice of my enemies can invent,” had his reputation restored.


House of the Week: 16-room Princeton farmhouse rich with history lists for $849,900

PRINCETON &mdash Statesmen, town officials and clergy have lived in this brick-and-mortar piece of history known as the 1760 Peter Goodnow House.

The 16-room farmhouse at 49 Gregory Hill Road is on the National Register of Historic Places and on the market for $849,900.

Goodnow (1710-1783) was a Sudbury native who moved to Princeton. He was elected to the office of selectman in 1760. He subsequently held the posts of town assessor and treasurer before a second election to selectman. Goodnow&rsquos signature is found on the first covenant of the Congregational Society in 1764.

Charles Russell completed the federal-style portion of the house in 1815, which was attached to an ell of the original 1760 build. Russell designed parts of the main house to replicate the circa 1786 Goodnow Inn, which is presently owned by the Massachusetts Audubon Society. An attached barn was added to the home in 1824.

Russell (1793-1885) farmed his land and ran a successful village store. He served as Princeton&rsquos town clerk for 28 years and postmaster for 29 years. He was also elected to the state General Assembly as a representative and later, as a senator.

Today, the 6,131 square-foot home is listed with Laurie Kraemer of Open Door Real Estate.

Custom features include wide plank pinewood floors, timber beamed ceilings, four fireplaces and a modernized country kitchen.

&ldquoMy favorite features are the big country kitchen and I absolutely love the decks, porch and the backyard with all its privacy,&rdquo Kraemer said.

Homeowner Kathryn Fisk agreed.

&ldquoThe big kitchen is the first room that welcomes you into our home, which used to be a carriage shed, but converted to a winter kitchen,&rdquo she said.

The large kitchen offers modern, stainless steel appliances set into stone countertops alongside antiques, such as a wood/coal stove and an old copper hand pump and sink.

Fisk said the dining room also holds history and intrigue. The unique paneled shutters, she said, were interior shutters from the Boston Town Hall that were given to the Russell family by the city of Boston.

The living room features two full walls of built-in bookshelves and a brick fireplace, while the family room offers wide timbers in a post-and-beam ceiling and a Franklin stove set in a brick fireplace.

The privacy of the backyard is best viewed from the large three-season room that opens to a covered porch with deck that, in the winter when the leaves are off the trees, offers a view of Mount Wachusett.

A half bath with laundry and a full bath complete the main floor.

Upstairs are the master bedroom with brick fireplace and modern bath, four more bedrooms and a second three-season sunroom.

An attached two-bedroom apartment has a private entrance at the front of the house and access to a deck in the back.

Other notables in the home, Fisk said, are the door knocker on the circa 1760 front door that is said to have been forged by Paul Revere in his early years as a silversmith.


10. He had a lot of kids.

Revere fathered 16 children𠅎ight with his first wife, Sarah Orne, and eight with Rachel Walker, whom he married after Sarah’s death in 1773. He raised them in a townhouse at 19 North Square that is downtown Boston’s oldest building, first constructed in 1680 after the Great Fire of 1676 destroyed the original home on the site. Eleven of Revere’s children survived to adulthood, and at the time of his death at the ancient (for that time) age of 83, five were still living.


Brush Up on History at Paul Revere House

On the evening of April 18, 1775, Dr. Joseph Warren summoned Paul Revere, then employed by the Boston Committee of Correspondence and the Massachusetts Committee of Safety as an express rider carrying news, messages, and documents. The task—to ride to Lexington, Mass., to alert Samuel Adams and John Hancock that British troops were marching to arrest them—immortalized the talented silversmith and his midnight ride. Those hazy on the historic particulars or just craving a taste of old Boston can find them at Paul Revere’s home in Boston’s North End.

Built in 1680, the Paul Revere House at North Square is believed to be among the oldest in Boston. One of the most popular attractions along Boston’s Freedom Trail, the house was built on the site of the parsonage of the Second Church of Boston. Increase Mather, the Second Church minister and later president of Harvard College, and his family (among them his son, Congregational minister and author Cotton Mather) occupied the parsonage from 1670 until it was destroyed in the Great Fire of 1676. Revere bought the house in 1770, moving in with his growing family, which at the time comprised his wife, Sarah, their five children, and his mother, Deborah. After Revere sold the home in 1800, the ground floor housed a series of shops, among them a candy store, a cigar factory, a bank, and a vegetable and fruit business. In 1902, Paul Revere’s great-grandson, John P. Reynolds, Jr., purchased the building to ensure that it would not be demolished, and the Paul Revere Memorial Association was formed to preserve and renovate it.

In April 1908, the house was opened to the public, and the association continues to oversee its upkeep and day-to-day operations. The restored dwelling resembles the late 17th-century original—nearly 90 percent of the structure, including two doors, three window frames, and portions of the flooring, foundation, inner wall material, and rafters, are original. The period furnishings in the upstairs chambers belonged to the Revere family. In the courtyard is a 900-pound bell crafted by Paul Revere & Sons. Missing from the display is a small mortar, which is currently on loan through 2020 as part of an exhibition, Beyond Midnight: Paul Revere, traveling to the New York Historical Society, the Worcester Art Museum, and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Arkansas.

In addition to being a silversmith and a goldsmith—trades passed down from his father—Revere was a copper plate engraver, an illustrator, and an importer, and for nearly a decade he worked as a dentist, cleaning teeth and wiring in false ones. Through his lodge, the active Freemason grew close to members of the revolutionary movement and occasionally reported to them on the whereabouts of British soldiers. But it wasn’t until a century later that Revere, who had gone on to become a successful industrialist, was regarded as a hero of the American Revolution. His ride was immortalized in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem “Paul Revere’s Ride,” first published in 1860 in the pages of The Atlantic Monthly.

The Paul Revere House provides various programming, such as field trips, school outreach programs, lectures, tours, and more. Click here to learn more about what they offer. Be sure to check out the adjacent Pierce/Hichborn House, once owned by boatbuilder Nathaniel Hichborn, Paul Revere’s first cousin. One of Boston’s few remaining examples of early 18th-century brick architecture, the building is an outstanding example of the English Renaissance style, featuring brick belt courses between floors and shallow arches over the windows and doors. The Pierce/Hichborn House offers guided, 30-minute tours one to two times per day. Call the museum the evening prior or the day of your visit to find out what time tours begin.

The Paul Revere House, 19 North Square, Boston, is open daily from April 15 to October 31, 9:30 am to 5:15 pm, and from November 1 to April 14, 9:30 am to 4:15 pm. Admission is $5 for adults, $4.50 for seniors and students, and $1 for children ages 5 to 17 (free for children under 5) for the Paul Revere House. Tours of the Pierce/Hichborn House cost $4 for adults, $3.50 for seniors and students, and $1 for children ages 5 to 17 (free for children under 5). Take the Green Line to Government Center or Haymarket, the Blue Line to Government Center or Aquarium, or the Orange Line to State or Haymarket.


Time Capsule Buried by Paul Revere and Sam Adams Discovered in Boston

Workers fixing a leak at the Massachusetts State House in Boston in December 2014 unearthed a time capsule placed in the building’s cornerstone more than two centuries ago.򠫌ording to historical accounts, Samuel Adams (who by then had become governor of Massachusetts), Paul Revere and William Scollay placed the original contents of the time capsule in 1795, in a ceremony that started in downtown Boston and ended at the State House, then under construction. 

Located atop Beacon Hill on land once owned by the state’s first elected governor, John Hancock, the State House was completed in 1798. The Federalist-style building, sometimes called the “New” State House,” replaced the Old State House on Court Street as the seat of the Massachusetts government. The latter building built in 1713, is the oldest surviving public building in Boston and now houses a historical museum.

In October 2014, the Old State House saw its own time capsule excitement, when officials opened a 113-year-old container that had been encased in the head of a golden lion statue on top of the building. Its contents, including sealed letters, photographs, and newspaper articles, were found to be in near-perfect condition.

The capsule placed by Revere and Adams in 1795 was first removed from the State House cornerstone in 1855, during emergency repairs to the building, and its contents were placed in a copper box, replacing the original cowhide container. It was then reburied and did not see the light of day again—until 2014.

When workers repairing a water leak at the State House spotted the time capsule, they called in the staff from the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. As reported in the Boston Globe, the excavation began when workers dislodged the cornerstone from the building and propped it up on wooden blocks so that one of the museum’s conservators, Pam Hatchfield, could slide underneath. Hatchfield painstakingly tapped away at the block, taking periodic breaks to warm up out of the wind and snow. As she worked, tiny coins fell out of the plaster encasing the time capsule. Public officials had tossed in the coins, which appeared to be silver, for good luck during the 1855 reburial ceremony.

The corroded copper alloy box that finally emerged from the plaster was a little smaller than a cigar box. State police transported the box to the Museum of Fine Arts, where it was X-rayed and carefully opened. The time capsule was found to contain silver and copper coins dating from 1652 to 1855, newspapers, a medal depicting George Washington, and a silver plaque believed to be engraved by Paul Revere. 

The collection was placed on display at Boston&aposs Museum of Fine Arts until June 2015. Then the 220-year-old time capsule was reburied—with modern currency added for future generations to rediscover. 


Watch the video: Knee Deep in Paul Reveres Privy