19 April 1775. Did your Ancestor "hear" the "Shot heard round the world?"

+14 votes

Where were your Ancestors on 19 Apr 1775? 

Did any of them participate in the American Revolution?

Which side did they fight for?

Who do you think fired the infamous shot?

Be sure to check out the 1776 Project and include your Patriot ancestor regardless for whom they fought.


in The Tree House by Michael Stills G2G6 Pilot (537k points)
edited by Michael Stills
Nice post Michael! Mags
Great post. My Mother-in Law was astonished to learn that she had fighters on both sides of the war.

I just assumed my family was split.

As to who fired the first shot I'm betting it was them rascally Americans.
The shot killed my ancestor!  (Or at least that is how my husband tells it.... )

[[Coolidge-222|Joseph Coolidge]]     -NGP

4 Answers

+6 votes

Here are my Revolutionary War Ancestors, all of them American Patriots with one possible Hessian.

Who Shot First? The Americans! I tend to agree.

I recently discovered that my ancestor, Jonathan Brown was a Minuteman who responded to the Lexington Alarm from Brimfield, Mass.

by Michael Stills G2G6 Pilot (537k points)
+4 votes
To answer your questions

1 probably

2 Mostly in what is now New England

3 Yes

4 Both

5 I should know this but I forget

And I already belong to that project.

As Mag's said Good Post.
by Dale Byers G2G Astronaut (1.7m points)
+6 votes
Maybe Johanes Andreas or one of his brothers did it LOL:)

by Anonymous Vickery G2G6 Pilot (264k points)
+5 votes
A few of my ancestors were members of local militia units in Middlesex County or the Boston area in 1775 and are said to have responded to the Lexington alarm. However, I have a suspicion that the number of people whom posterity records as having "been there" is much larger than the total number of people who participated. Similarly, I've been impressed to read anecdotes in which multiple ancestors of mine claimed to have participated the Boston Tea Party -- including some who didn't reside near Boston "but just happened to be in Boston that day."
by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.6m points)
True enough! And yet none of them has yet claimed being the one to have actually fied the first shot.
Do you suppose this was a "well-regulated militia" whose members would not admit to being trigger-happy?
Ha! Yes!
Although there is a site which claims to include all the participants in the Boston Tea Party, the truth is that the names (of the "lawbreakers") naturally were not recorded.  Other sources claim that people came from as far away as what is now Maine to participate, and that no one knows all the names of the participants.

My ancestor, Samson Spalding, is alleged to have participated by family, though his name isn't recorded.The family members alleging this lived in the early 19th century.  Samson lived in Lexington or Concord, and fought in one of those battles and Bunker Hill as well.

So, Ellen, there may be more patriotic blood in you than you suspect!
Sorry, Dan, while it's very likely that a number of my ancestors who lived in Braintree or Middlesex County did turn out in response to the Lexington alarm, I continue to suspect that the number of men who told their grandchildren that they participated in the Boston Tea Party greatly exceeds the capacity of the decks of the ships that were in Boston Harbor at the time. For a modern analogy, consider the number of people who claim that they were in the audience for a famous event in sports history or for the first concert by some iconic rock group.

Many of the chests thrown into Boston Harbor weighed over 400 pounds.  Surely as some men grew tired, others replaced them. 5,000 people attended the meeting in Boston.....

By the way, I think it was the British who fired the first shot.  I do not think that civilian militia would have the nerves to start a war in the face of armed regulars, who I think gave our Patriots the infamous "....whiff of gunpowder..." (--Napoleon) to "encourage them" to cease resisting the searches for arms.

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