On the night of April 18, 1775, 700 British soldiers marched through the night and into the morning of the 19th, on their way to confiscate and destroy American guns and military supplies in Concord, Massachusetts.
The Patriots were prepared.
The Colonists had known of the planned confiscation for weeks in advance, and were alerted by Paul Revere that the hour was nigh. Having waited through the night at the Buckman Tavern, just across from the Lexington Green, the soldiers were prepared when the British arrived at the break of dawn.
The Tavern of colonial times was a central meeting point and information exchange post for the town. The Buckman Tavern served as a central meeting point for the plotting of the resistance. I highly recommend the tour, which at $5 is an incredible bargain.
At dawn came the confrontation and the first shots of the American Revolution on the Lexington Green. The Minute Men were vastly outnumbered. Many were shot, and seven were ultimately killed at this first battle. The British Soldiers proceeded onward to Concord, continuing with their mission to confiscate the colonists weapons.
The battle at the Old North Bridge in Concord is where the tide turned in favor of the Colonists.
The British were met by over 500 scrappy colonists, who fought and devastated the Redcoats, who in confusion and fear, quickly fell back in retreat to Boston.
As they retreated, more American militia poured in from the countryside, inflicting heavy damage and casualties as they chased the British back to Boston down the Battle Road – today known as Massachusetts Avenue. It was a complete and utter rout. The British retreated to Charlestown, as the American militias blockaded the access points, starting the Siege of Boston.
The caption reads:
MEMORIAL TO THE LEXINGTON MINUTE MEN OF 1775
May we all be so brave, and have the courage of our forefathers when history calls for us.