April 18, 2016

One spring night

Here is a rerun from 2010.  It shames me to read old stuff and see the effort I once put into this hobby compared to current efforts.

April 18, 2010

One spring night

It was a typical spring evening in New England. The night was cool, but the man sweated underneath his clothing. The sounds and smells of the town were around him. He shifted his weight nervously as he waited.

He looked across the harbor at the dim lights of the city. He took a deep breath and let it out slowly. He glimpsed a tall steeple of a church in the distance. The white steeple looked a ghostly gray in the night. The church moved him to mutter a silent prayer. He was lost in his thoughts for a time.

:There". A voice said beside him. The distant steeple glowed with a lantern hung in the belfry. A second light followed. The man leaped aboard his horse.

"Spread the alarm, 'tis by sea". he said and spurred his mount into the countryside to warn the militia of the surrounding towns. He set off on the Lexington Road to warn Adams and Hancock. The British army was on the move. They must not be arrested, the arms of the colonists not confiscated. The man had not a thought of his own risk, the hard earned wealth he could lose in an instant. Fighting tyranny was worth any price.

He stopped at selected houses and taverns along the road. His whispered message "The Regulars are out", sent other horsemen into the countryside, warning the appropriate 'Minutemen' in Middlesex County. There was no shouting. The message spread across the fields and through the villages with silent efficiency.

Within a few hours the man had arrived in Lexington. He met with Sam Adams and John Hancock. His companion from Cambridge joined them a little after midnight and along with a third patriot set off towards the nearby town of Concord to warn the militia there the British were on the move to collect the arms cache hidden in Concord.

As the man and his companions, William Dawes and Dr. Samuel Prescott, reached the hamlet of Lincoln, they were stopped by a British pickett. Dawes and the Doctor escaped into the dark, but the man had no choice but to submit. As dawn broke the man was being escorted toward the marching army -- back towards Lexington.

Nearing the town the officers and the man, silversmith Paul Revere, heard shouts. Soon shots rang out. The militia had mustered. The colonists had no intention of starting a war. Their only intent had been to bluff the Authorities. As the shots rang out the three British officers made Revere dismount. Taking his horse they rode toward the distant fighting.

Revere walked through the cemetery to the house he was at just a few hours earlier. As citizens and the British Army scuffled on Lexington Green, Revere helped John Hancock and his family escape. As the party fled over the hills, Revere saw the militia he had helped muster fall back toward Concord and history.

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