Paul Revere’s America• A mechanic in the 18th century who made things with his hands. He took raw lumps of metal, and made works of art.• He was a man consumed with personal ambition and was devoted to his community. He helped start a revolution, but his purpose was to resist change and to preserve the values of the past.• He sought the path of virtue but enjoyed the pleasures of the world.
Paul Revere’s America• He became a yankee and his mind and character were shaped by family, school, church, and the town itself.• He gained a discipline of thought without losing his curiosity about the world.• He made frames for miniature portraits and studied the art of copper-plate engraving . He did many illustrations for Boston printers on the side he learned a method of “setting false teeth.”
General Gage’s Dilemma• General Thomas Gage was the most powerful man in North America.• For months he tried to act with firmness and restraint, but the people of New England had stubbornly set all his efforts at defiance.• He thought of himself as a fair- minded and moderate man, a friend of liberty and a defender of what he was pleased to call “the common rights of mankind.”
General Gage’s Dilemma• After awhile Thomas Gage had come to hate his town. A couple months later he wrote “I wish this cursed place was burned.”• The Gages may not have been an admirable couple, but London found them amusing, and they were well connected at Court.• For Thomas Gage, the rule of law meant the absolute supremacy of that many-headed sovereign., the King-in-Parliament.
First Strokes• Gage had finally set his plan in motion. His first step was to seize the largest stock of gunpowder in New England.• Gage selected one of his most able officers, Lieutenant- Colonel George Maddison, a commander of the 4th foot.• On the morning of Sep 1,1774 Maddison’s men crept out of their quarters and marched to Long Wharf, where the navy was waiting with thirteen longboats.
First Strokes• General Gage was very pleased that his staff had planned the mission perfectly, and Colonel Maddison had executed it without a flaw.• The people of the town were caught completely by surprise and it was rumored that the Province had been “robbed of it’s powder," and that the war had begun.• That night a young traveler named McNeil happened to be on the road from the Connecticut Valley to Boston.
Mounting Tensions• After months of frost, Boston larders were empty, and food was increasingly scarce. The price of fresh provisions were high in the crowded town that General Gage was forced to put his army on salt rations.• The drinking water began to go foul and health started to go downhill.• The army had been so sickly during the winter that many had died or deserted.
Mounting Tensions• General Gage began doubling his guards around town to keep his own men in and the “country people” out. In desperation he began to execute his own men. When a young private tried to desert for the third time he was dressed in a white shroud of repentance, take to Boston Common, and shit by a firing squad while the town watched in complete shock and horror.In New England, corporal punishment was lawful for the violation of God’s Commandments.