The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library)


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Then, on March 2, there were scuffles involving British soldiers and rope-workers, according to the Massachusetts Historical Society.

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The spark: On a cold night a few days later -- March 5, -- a group of young men taunted Pvt. Hugh White, a British soldier guarding the Customs House. This drew attention and brought more bystanders, who then began tossing ice, snow and oyster shells. Church bells rang — a signal that residents were needed to fight a fire. Meanwhile, reinforcements arrived under the command of Capt.

The Boston Massacre / Thomas Fleming. - Version details - Trove

Thomas Preston. In all, there were nine British soldiers.

Why did protestors -- armed with snowballs, ice, rocks and oyster shells -- take the risk of provoking armed professional soldiers? Bottom line: They thought they could. The American Revolution. So what about the word massacre?

Does that describe what happened? Again, the definition specifies that the victims are "usually helpless or unresisting human beings under circumstances of atrocity or cruelty. To begin with, it was never proved that Capt. Preston gave an order to fire. The man sprang to his feet and was struck by another club, thrown from a distance.

Boston Massacre Trials: 1770

He leveled his musket and pulled the trigger. Seconds later, the other members of the guard imitated him. Attucks, an African-American, may be the most well-known and is sometimes identified as the first casualty of the Revolutionary War. Ironically, Parliament repealed most of the hated Townshend Acts that very day. So technically, it wasn't a massacre, but the Sons of Liberty sought to portray it that way. Samuel Adams, cousin of John Adams, gathered depositions from Boston residents who swore citizens had been peaceful that night, Fleming writes. Within three weeks afterward, Revere produced an engraving that erroneously showed British soldiers firing simultaneously into the crowd, under the words, "The Bloody Massacre.

The day after the massacre, one lawyer agreed to represent the soldiers -- John Adams. Famously he got all but two of them off. Those two were branded on the thumbs.


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By Thomas Fleming - Thomas Fleming
The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library) The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library)
The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library) The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library)
The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library) The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library)
The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library) The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library)
The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library) The Boston Massacre (The Thomas Fleming Library)

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