Kingdom of Great Britain
The Kingdom of Great Britain called Great Britain, was a sovereign state in western Europe from 1 May 1707 to 31 December 1800. The state came into being following the Treaty of Union in 1706, ratified by the Acts of Union 1707, which united the kingdoms of England and Scotland to form a single kingdom encompassing the whole island of Great Britain and its outlying islands, with the exception of the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands; the unitary state was governed by a single parliament and government, based in Westminster. The former kingdoms had been in personal union since James VI of Scotland became King of England and King of Ireland in 1603 following the death of Elizabeth I, bringing about the "Union of the Crowns". After the accession of George I to the throne of Great Britain in 1714, the kingdom was in a personal union with the Electorate of Hanover; the early years of the unified kingdom were marked by Jacobite risings which ended in defeat for the Stuart cause at Culloden in 1746.
In 1763, victory in the Seven Years' War led to the dominance of the British Empire, to become the foremost global power for over a century and grew to become the largest empire in history. The Kingdom of Great Britain was replaced by the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on 1 January 1801 with the Acts of Union 1800; the name Britain descends from the Latin name for the island of Great Britain, Britannia or Brittānia, the land of the Britons via the Old French Bretaigne and Middle English Bretayne, Breteyne. The term Great Britain was first used in 1474; the use of the word "Great" before "Britain" originates in the French language, which uses Bretagne for both Britain and Brittany. French therefore distinguishes between the two by calling Britain la Grande Bretagne, a distinction, transferred into English; the Treaty of Union and the subsequent Acts of Union state that England and Scotland were to be "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain", as such "Great Britain" was the official name of the state, as well as being used in titles such as "Parliament of Great Britain".
Both the Acts and the Treaty describe the country as "One Kingdom" and a "United Kingdom", which has led some much publications into the error of treating the "United Kingdom" as a name before it came into being in 1801. The websites of the Scottish Parliament, the BBC, others, including the Historical Association, refer to the state created on 1 May 1707 as the United Kingdom of Great Britain; the term United Kingdom was sometimes used during the 18th century to describe the state, but was not its name. The kingdoms of England and Scotland, both in existence from the 9th century, were separate states until 1707. However, they had come into a personal union in 1603, when James VI of Scotland became king of England under the name of James I; this Union of the Crowns under the House of Stuart meant that the whole of the island of Great Britain was now ruled by a single monarch, who by virtue of holding the English crown ruled over the Kingdom of Ireland. Each of the three kingdoms maintained laws.
Various smaller islands were in the king's domain, including the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. This disposition changed when the Acts of Union 1707 came into force, with a single unified Crown of Great Britain and a single unified parliament. Ireland remained formally separate, with its own parliament, until the Acts of Union 1800; the Union of 1707 provided for a Protestant-only succession to the throne in accordance with the English Act of Settlement of 1701. The Act of Settlement required that the heir to the English throne be a descendant of the Electress Sophia of Hanover and not be a Catholic. Legislative power was vested in the Parliament of Great Britain, which replaced both the Parliament of England and the Parliament of Scotland. In practice it was a continuation of the English parliament, sitting at the same location in Westminster, expanded to include representation from Scotland; as with the former Parliament of England and the modern Parliament of the United Kingdom, the Parliament of Great Britain was formally constituted of three elements: the House of Commons, the House of Lords, the Crown.
The right of the English peerage to sit in the House of Lords remained unchanged, while the disproportionately large Scottish peerage was permitted to send only 16 representative peers, elected from amongst their number for the life of each parliament. The members of the former English House of Commons continued as members of the British House of Commons, but as a reflection of the relative tax bases of the two countries the number of Scottish representatives was reduced to 45. Newly created peers in the Peerage of Great Britain were given the automatic right to sit in the Lords. Despite the end of a separate parliament for Scotland, it retained its own laws and system of courts, As its own established Presbyterian Church, control over its own schools; the social structure was hierarchical, the same elite remain in control after 1707. Scotland continued to have its own excellent universities, with the strong intellectual community in Edinburgh, The Scottish Enlightenment had a major impact on British and European thinking.
As a result of Poynings' Law of 1495, the Parliament of Ireland was subordinate to the Parliament of England, after 1707 to the Parliament of Great Britain. The Westminster parliament's Declaratory Act 1719 (also called the Dependency of Ireland
Battle of Bunker Hill
The Battle of Bunker Hill was fought on June 17, 1775, during the Siege of Boston in the early stages of the American Revolutionary War. The battle is named after Bunker Hill in Charlestown, peripherally involved in the battle, it was the original objective of both the colonial and British troops, though the majority of combat took place on the adjacent hill which became known as Breed's Hill. On June 13, 1775, the leaders of the colonial forces besieging Boston learned that the British were planning to send troops out from the city to fortify the unoccupied hills surrounding the city, which would give them control of Boston Harbor. In response, 1,200 colonial troops under the command of William Prescott stealthily occupied Bunker Hill and Breed's Hill. During the night, the colonists constructed a strong redoubt on Breed's Hill, as well as smaller fortified lines across the Charlestown Peninsula. By daybreak of June 17, the British became aware of the presence of colonial forces on the Peninsula and mounted an attack against them that day.
Two assaults on the colonial positions were repulsed with significant British casualties. The colonists retreated to Cambridge over Bunker Hill, leaving the British in control of the Peninsula; the battle was a tactical, though somewhat Pyrrhic victory for the British, as it proved to be a sobering experience for them, involving many more casualties than the Americans had incurred, including a large number of officers. The battle had demonstrated that inexperienced militia were able to stand up to regular army troops in battle. Subsequently, the battle discouraged the British from any further frontal attacks against well defended front lines. American casualties were comparatively much fewer, although their losses included General Joseph Warren and Major Andrew McClary, the final casualty of the battle; the battle led the British to adopt a more cautious planning and maneuver execution in future engagements, evident in the subsequent New York and New Jersey campaign, arguably helped rather than hindered the American forces.
Their new approach to battle was giving the Americans greater opportunity to retreat if defeat was imminent. The costly engagement convinced the British of the need to hire substantial numbers of foreign mercenaries to bolster their strength in the face of the new and formidable Continental Army. Boston, situated on a peninsula, was protected from close approach by the expanses of water surrounding it, which were dominated by British warships. In the aftermath of the battles of Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775, the colonial militia, a force of about 15,000 men, had surrounded the town, besieged it. Under the command of Artemas Ward, they controlled the only land access to Boston itself, lacking a navy, were unable to contest British domination of the waters of the harbor; the British troops, a force of about 6,000 under the command of General Thomas Gage, occupied the city, were able to be resupplied and reinforced by sea. In theory, they were thus able to remain in Boston indefinitely.
However, the land across the water from Boston contained a number of hills, which could be used to advantage. If the militia could obtain enough artillery pieces, these could be placed on the hills and used to bombard the city until the occupying army evacuated it or surrendered, it was with this in mind that the Knox Expedition, led by Henry Knox transported cannon from Fort Ticonderoga to the Boston area. The Charlestown Peninsula, lying to the north of Boston, started from a short, narrow isthmus at its northwest and extended about 1 mile southeastward into Boston Harbor. Bunker Hill, with an elevation of 110 feet, lay at the northern end of the peninsula. Breed's Hill, at a height of 62 feet, was more nearer to Boston; the town of Charlestown occupied flats at the southern end of the peninsula. At its closest approach, less than 1,000 feet separated the Charlestown Peninsula from the Boston Peninsula, where Copp's Hill was at about the same height as Breed's Hill. While the British retreat from Concord had ended in Charlestown, General Gage, rather than fortifying the hills on the peninsula, had withdrawn those troops to Boston the day after that battle, turning the entire Charlestown Peninsula into a no man's land.
Throughout May, in response to orders from Gage requesting support, the British received reinforcements, until they reached a strength of about 6,000 men. On May 25, three generals arrived on HMS Cerberus: William Howe, John Burgoyne, Henry Clinton. Gage began planning with them to break out of the city, finalizing a plan on June 12; this plan began with the taking of the Dorchester Neck, fortifying the Dorchester Heights, marching on the colonial forces stationed in Roxbury. Once the southern flank had been secured, the Charlestown heights would be taken, the forces in Cambridge driven away; the attack was set for June 18. On June 13, the Massachusetts Provincial Congress was notified, by express messenger from the Committee of Safety in Exeter, New Hampshire, that a New Hampshire gentleman "of undoubted veracity" had, while visiting Boston, overheard the British commanders making plans to capture Dorchester and Charlestown. On June 15, the Massachusetts Committee of Safety decided that additional defenses needed to be erected.
General Ward directed General Israel Putnam to set up defenses on the Charlestown Peninsula on Bunker Hill. On the night of June 16, colonial Colonel William Prescott led about 1,200 men onto the peninsula in order to set up positions from which artillery fire could be directed
William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe
General William Howe, 5th Viscount Howe, KB, PC was a British Army officer who rose to become Commander-in-Chief of British forces during the American War of Independence. Howe was one of three brothers. In historiography of the American war he is referred to as Sir William Howe in distinction to his brother Richard, who held the title of Lord Howe at that time. Having joined the army in 1746, Howe saw extensive service in the War of the Austrian Succession and Seven Years' War, he became known for his role in the capture of Quebec in 1759 when he led a British force to capture the cliffs at Anse-au-Foulon, allowing James Wolfe to land his army and engage the French in the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. Howe participated in the campaigns to take Louisbourg, Belle Île and Havana, he was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of the Isle of Wight, a post he held until 1795. Howe was sent to North America in March 1775, arriving in May after the American War of Independence broke out. After leading British troops to a costly victory in the Battle of Bunker Hill, Howe took command of all British forces in America from Thomas Gage in September of that year.
Howe's record in North America was marked by the successful capture of both New York City and Philadelphia. However, poor British campaign planning for 1777 contributed to the failure of John Burgoyne's Saratoga campaign, which played a major role in the entry of France into the war. Howe's role in developing those plans and the degree to which he was responsible for British failures that year have both been subjects of contemporary and historic debate, he was knighted after his successes in 1776. He resigned his post as Commander in Chief, North America, in 1777, the next year returned to England, where he was at times active in the defence of the British Isles, he sat in the House of Commons from 1758 to 1780. He inherited the Viscountcy of Howe upon the death of his brother Richard in 1799, he married, but had no children, the viscountcy became extinct with his death in 1814. William Howe was born in England, the third son of Emanuel Howe, 2nd Viscount Howe and Charlotte, the daughter of Sophia von Kielmansegg, Countess of Leinster and Darlington, an acknowledged illegitimate half-sister of King George I.
His mother was a regular in the courts of George II and George III. This connection with the crown may have improved the careers of all four sons, but all were very capable officers, his father was a politician, who served as Governor of Barbados where he died in 1735. William's eldest brother, General George Howe, was killed just before the 1758 Battle of Carillon at Fort Ticonderoga. Another brother, Admiral Richard Howe, rose to become one of Britain's leading naval commanders. A third brother, commanded ships for the East India Company, Winchelsea in 1762–4 and Nottingham in 1766, made observations on Madeira and on the Comoro Islands. William entered the army when he was 17 by buying a cornet's commission in the Duke of Cumberland's Dragoons in 1746, he served for two years in Flanders during the War of the Austrian Succession. After the war he was transferred to the 20th Regiment of Foot, where he became a friend of James Wolfe. During the Seven Years' War Howe's service first brought him to America, did much to raise his reputation.
He joined the newly formed 58th Regiment of Foot in February 1757, was promoted to lieutenant colonel in December of that year. He commanded the regiment at the Siege of Louisbourg in 1758, leading an amphibious landing under heavy enemy fire; this action earned Howe a commendation from Wolfe. Howe commanded a light infantry battalion under General Wolfe during the 1759 Siege of Quebec, he was in the Battle of Beaufort, was chosen by Wolfe to lead the ascent from the Saint Lawrence River up to the Plains of Abraham that led to the British victory in the Battle of the Plains of Abraham on 13 September 1759. After spending the winter in the defence of Quebec City, his regiment fought in the April 1760 Battle of Sainte-Foy, led a brigade in the capture of Montreal under Jeffery Amherst before returning to England. Howe led a brigade in the 1761 Capture of Belle Île, off the French coast, turned down the opportunity to become military governor after its capture so that he might continue in active service.
He served as adjutant general of the force that captured Havana in 1762, playing a part in a skirmish at Guanabacoa. In 1758, Howe was elected a member of parliament for Nottingham, succeeding to the seat vacated by his brother George's death, his election was assisted by the influence of his mother, who campaigned on behalf of her son while he was away at war, may well have been undertaken because service in Parliament was seen as a common way to improve one's prospects for advancement in the military. In 1764 he was promoted to colonel of the 46th Regiment of Foot, in 1768 he was appointed lieutenant governor of the Isle of Wight; as tensions rose between Britain and the colonies in the 1770s, Howe continued to rise through the ranks, came to be regarded as one of the best officers in the army. He was promoted to major general in 1772, in 1774 introduced new training drills for light infantry companies. In Parliament he was sympathetic to the American colonies, he publicly opposed the collection of legislation intended to punish the Thirteen Colonies known as Intolerable Acts, in 1774 assured his constituents that he would resist active duty against the Americans and asserted that the entire British army could not conquer America.
He let government ministers know that he was prepared to serve
Invasion of Quebec (1775)
For other similarly-named events, see Battle of QuebecThe Invasion of Quebec in 1775 was the first major military initiative by the newly formed Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. The objective of the campaign was to gain military control of the British Province of Quebec, convince French-speaking Canadians to join the revolution on the side of the Thirteen Colonies. One expedition left Fort Ticonderoga under Richard Montgomery and captured Fort St. Johns, nearly captured British General Guy Carleton when taking Montreal; the other expedition left Cambridge, under Benedict Arnold, traveled with great difficulty through the wilderness of Maine to Quebec City. The two forces joined there, but they were defeated at the Battle of Quebec in December 1775. Montgomery's expedition set out from Fort Ticonderoga in late August, in mid-September began besieging Fort St. Johns, the main defensive point south of Montreal. After the fort was captured in November, Carleton abandoned Montreal, fleeing to Quebec City, Montgomery took control of Montreal before heading for Quebec with an army much reduced in size by expiring enlistments.
There he joined Arnold, who had left Cambridge in early September on an arduous trek through the wilderness that left his surviving troops starving and lacking in many supplies and equipment. These forces joined before Quebec City in December, they assaulted the city in a snowstorm on the last day of the year; the battle was a disastrous defeat for the Continental Army. Arnold conducted an ineffectual siege on the city, during which successful propaganda campaigns boosted Loyalist sentiments, General David Wooster's blunt administration of Montreal served to annoy both supporters and detractors of the Americans; the British sent several thousand troops, including General John Burgoyne and Hessian allies, to reinforce those in the province in May 1776. General Carleton launched a counter-offensive driving the smallpox-weakened and disorganized Continental forces back to Fort Ticonderoga; the Continental Army, under Arnold's command, were able to hinder the British advance sufficiently that an attack could not be mounted on Fort Ticonderoga in 1776.
The end of the campaign set the stage for Burgoyne's campaign of 1777 to gain control of the Hudson River valley. The objective of the American military campaign, control of the British province of Quebec, was referred to as "Canada" in 1775. For example, the authorization by the Second Continental Congress to General Philip Schuyler for the campaign included language that, if it was "not disagreeable to the Canadians", to "immediately take possession of St. John's, any other parts of the Country", to "pursue any other measures in Canada" that might "promote peace and security" of the colonies. Modern history books covering the campaign in detail refer to it as Canada in their titles; the territory that Britain called Quebec was in large part the French province of Canada until 1763, when France ceded it to Britain in the 1763 Treaty of Paris, which formally ended the French and Indian War. The name "Quebec" is used in this article, except in quotations that mention "Canada", to avoid confusion between this historic usage, usage with respect to the modern nation of Canada.
In the spring of 1775, the American Revolutionary War began with the Battle of Lexington and Concord. The conflict was at a standstill, with the British Army surrounded by colonial militia in the siege of Boston. In May 1775, aware of the light defenses and presence of heavy weapons at the British Fort Ticonderoga, Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen led a force of colonial militia that captured Fort Ticonderoga and Fort Crown Point, raided Fort St. Johns, all of which were only defended at the time. Ticonderoga and Crown Point were garrisoned by 1,000 Connecticut militia under the command of Benjamin Hinman in June; the First Continental Congress, meeting in 1774, had invited the French-Canadians to join in a second meeting of the Congress to be held in May 1775, in a public letter dated October 26, 1774. The Second Continental Congress sent a second such letter in May 1775, but there was no substantive response to either one. Following the capture of Ticonderoga and Allen noted that it was necessary to hold Ticonderoga as a defense against attempts by the British to militarily divide the colonies, noted that Quebec was poorly defended.
They each separately proposed expeditions against Quebec, suggesting that a force as small as 1200–1500 men would be sufficient to drive the British military from the province. Congress at first ordered the forts to be abandoned, prompting New York and Connecticut to provide troops and material for purposes that were defensive in nature. Public outcries from across New York challenged the Congress to change its position; when it became clear that Guy Carleton, the governor of Quebec, was fortifying Fort St. Johns, was attempting to involve the Iroquois in upstate New York in the conflict, Congress decided that a more active position was needed. On June 27, 1775, Congress authorized General Philip Schuyler to investigate, and, if it seemed appropriate, begin an invasion. Benedict Arnold, passed over for its command, went to Boston and convinced General George Washington to send a supporting force to Quebec City under his command. Following the raid on Fort St. Johns, General Carleton was keenly aware of the danger of invasion from the south, requested, without
John Trumbull was an American artist during the period of the American Revolutionary War and was notable for his historical paintings. He has been called The Painter of the Revolution. Trumbull's Declaration of Independence, one of his four paintings which hang in the United States Capitol Rotunda, was used on the reverse of the commemorative bicentennial two-dollar bill. Trumbull was born in Lebanon, Connecticut, in 1756, to Jonathan Trumbull and his wife Faith Trumbull, his father served as Governor of Connecticut from 1769 to 1784. Both sides of his family were descended from early Puritan settlers in the state, he had two older brothers, Joseph Trumbull, the first commissary general of the Continental Army in the Revolutionary War, Jonathan Trumbull Jr. who would become the second Speaker of the House of the United States. The young Trumbull entered the 1771 junior class at Harvard College at age fifteen and graduated in 1773. Due to a childhood accident, Trumbull lost use of one eye; this may have influenced his detailed painting style.
As a soldier in the American Revolutionary War, Trumbull rendered a particular service at Boston by sketching plans of the British and American lines and works. He witnessed the Battle of Bunker Hill, he was appointed second personal aide to General George Washington, in June 1776, deputy adjutant-general to General Horatio Gates. He resigned from the army in 1777 after a dispute over the dating of his officer commission. In 1780, with funds depleted, Trumbull turned to art as a profession, he traveled to London, where upon introduction from Benjamin Franklin, Trumbull studied under Benjamin West. At West's suggestion, Trumbull painted small pictures of the War of Independence and miniature portraits, he painted about 250 in his lifetime. On September 23, 1780, British agent Major John André was captured by Continental troops in North America. After news reached Great Britain, outrage flared and Trumbull was arrested, as having been an officer in the Continental Army of similar rank to André, he was imprisoned for seven months in London's Tothill Fields Bridewell.
After being released, Trumbull returned to the United States in a voyage that lasted six months, ending late January 1782. He joined his brother David in supplying the army stationed at New Windsor, New York during the winter of 1782–83. In 1784, following Britain's recognition of the United States' independence, Trumbull returned to London for painting study under West. While working in his studio, Trumbull painted Battle of Bunker Hill and Death of General Montgomery in the Attack on Quebec. Both works are now in the Yale University Art Gallery. In July 1786, Trumbull went to Paris, where he made portrait sketches of French officers for the Surrender of Lord Cornwallis. With the assistance of Thomas Jefferson, serving there as the American minister to France, Trumbull began the early composition of the Declaration of Independence. Over the next 5 years Trumbull painted small portraits of signers, which he would use to piece together the larger painting. If the signer was deceased, a previous portrait would be copied, as was the case with Arthur Middleton, whose head position stands out in the painting.
While visiting with each signer or their family, always looking for funding, used the occasion to sell subscriptions to engravings that would be produced from his paintings of the American Revolution. While in Paris, Trumbull is credited with having introduced Jefferson to the Italian painter Maria Cosway. Trumbull's painting of Jefferson, commissioned by Cosway, became known due to a engraving of it by Asher Brown Durand, reproduced. Trumbull's Declaration of Independence painting was purchased by the United States Congress, along with his Surrender of General Burgoyne, Surrender of Lord Cornwallis, General George Washington Resigning His Commission, all related to the Revolution. All now hang in rotunda of the United States Capitol. Congress authorized only funds sufficient to purchase these four paintings. Trumbull completed several other paintings related to the Revolution: Death of General Warren at the Battle of Bunker's Hill; this was once owned by the Boston Athenaeum and is now held by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Trumbull encountered hard times. After many years of trying to create income from his painting, he had found a way to sustain himself from his art; this is by far the largest single collection of his works. The collection was housed in a neoclassical art gallery designed by Trumbull on Yale's Old Campus, along with portraits by other artists, his portraits include full lengths of General Washington and George Clinton, now held in New York City Hall. New York bought his full-length paintings of Alexander Hamilton and John Jay. In 1791 Trumbull was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Sciences, he painted portraits of John Adams, Jonathan Trumbull, Rufus King.
Fortification of Dorchester Heights
The Fortification of Dorchester Heights was a decisive action early in the American Revolutionary War that precipitated the end of the siege of Boston and the withdrawal of British troops from that city. On March 4, 1776, troops from the Continental Army under George Washington's command occupied Dorchester Heights, a series of low hills with a commanding view of Boston and its harbor, mounted powerful cannons there. General William Howe, commander of the British forces occupying the city, considered contesting this act, as the cannon threatened the town and the military ships in the harbor. After a snowstorm prevented execution of his plans, Howe chose to withdraw from the city; the British forces, accompanied by Loyalists who had fled to the city during the siege, left the city on March 17 and sailed to Halifax, Nova Scotia. The siege of Boston began on April 19, 1775, when, in the aftermath of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, Colonial militia surrounded the city of Boston. Benedict Arnold, who arrived with Connecticut militia to support the siege, told the Massachusetts Committee of Safety that cannons and other valuable military stores were stored at the defended Fort Ticonderoga in New York, proposed its capture.
On May 3, the Committee gave Arnold a colonel's commission and authorized him to raise troops and lead a mission to capture the fort. Arnold, in conjunction with Ethan Allen, his Green Mountain Boys, militia forces from Connecticut and western Massachusetts, captured the fort and all of its armaments on May 10. After George Washington took command of the army outside Boston in July 1775, the idea of bringing the cannons from Ticonderoga to the siege was raised by Colonel Henry Knox. Knox was given the assignment to transport weapons from Ticonderoga to Cambridge. Knox went to Ticonderoga in November 1775, over the course of three winter months, moved 60 tons of cannons and other armaments by boat, horse and ox-drawn sledges, manpower, along poor-quality roads, across two semi-frozen rivers, through the forests and swamps of the sparsely inhabited Berkshires to the Boston area. Historian Victor Brooks has called Knox's feat "one of the most stupendous feats of logistics" of the entire war; the British military leadership, headed by General William Howe, had long been aware of the importance of the Dorchester Heights, along with the heights of Charlestown, had commanding views of Boston and its outer harbor.
The harbor was vital to the British, as the Royal Navy, at first under Admiral Samuel Graves, under Admiral Molyneux Shuldham, provided protection for the troops in Boston, as well as transportation of supplies to the besieged city. Early in the siege, on June 15, the British agreed on the plan of seizing both of these heights, beginning with those in Dorchester, which had a better view of the harbor than the Charlestown hills, it was the leaking of this plan. Neither the British nor the Americans had the daring to fortify the heights; when Washington took command of the siege in July 1775, he considered taking the unoccupied Dorchester Heights, but rejected the idea, feeling the army was not ready to deal with the British attack on the position. The subject of an attempt on the heights was again discussed in early February 1776, but the local Committee of Safety believed the British troop strength too high, important military supplies like gunpowder too low, to warrant action at that time.
By the end of February, Knox had arrived with the cannon from Ticonderoga, as had additional supplies of powder and shells. Washington decided. Washington first placed some of the heavy cannons from Ticonderoga at Lechmere's Point and Cobble Hill in Cambridge, on Lamb's Dam in Roxbury; as a diversion against the planned move on the Dorchester Heights, he ordered these batteries to open fire on the town on the night of March 2, which fire the British returned, without significant casualties on either side. These cannonades were repeated on the night of March 3, while preparations for the taking of the heights continued. On the night of March 4, 1776, the batteries opened fire again, but this time the fire was accompanied by action; this cannonade was continued on three successive nights, while the British were focused on this, the Americans made preparations to implement a plan devised by Rufus Putnam to break the long siege. The American objective was to get cannon onto Dorchester Heights, fortify the position.
However the ground was frozen, so digging was impossible. Putnam, a millwright, devised a plan using chandeliers and fascines; these were prefabricated out of sight of the British. General John Thomas and about 2,000 troops marched to the top of Dorchester Heights, hauling tools, the prefabricated fortifications and cannon placements. Hay bales were placed between the path taken by the troops and the harbor in order to muffle the sounds of the activity. Throughout the night, these troops and their relief labored at hauling cannon and building the parapet overlooking the town and the harbor. General Washington was present to provide moral support and encouragement, reminding them that March 5 was the sixth anniversary of the Boston Massacre. By 4 a.m. they had constructed fortifications. Work continued on the positions, with troops cutting down trees and constructing abbatis to impede any British assault on the works; the outside of the works included rock-filled barrels that could be rolled down the hill at attacking troops.
Washington anticipated that General Howe and his troops wo
Joseph Warren was an American physician who played a leading role in American Patriot organizations in Boston in the early days of the American Revolution serving as President of the revolutionary Massachusetts Provincial Congress. Warren enlisted Paul Revere and William Dawes on April 18, 1775, to leave Boston and spread the alarm that the British garrison in Boston was setting out to raid the town of Concord and arrest rebel leaders John Hancock and Samuel Adams. Warren participated in the next day's Battles of Lexington and Concord, which are considered to be the opening engagements of the American Revolutionary War. Warren had been commissioned a Major General in the colony's militia shortly before the June 17, 1775 Battle of Bunker Hill. Rather than exercising his rank, Warren served in the battle as a private soldier, was killed in combat when British troops stormed the redoubt atop Breed's Hill, his death, immortalized in John Trumbull's painting, The Death of General Warren at the Battle of Bunker's Hill, June 17, 1775, galvanized the rebel forces.
He has been memorialized in the naming of many towns and other locations in the United States, by statues, in numerous other ways. Joseph Warren was born to Joseph Warren and Mary Warren, his father was a respected farmer who died in October 1755 when he fell off a ladder while gathering fruit in his orchard. After attending the Roxbury Latin School, Joseph enrolled in Harvard College, graduating in 1759, taught for about a year at Roxbury Latin, he studied medicine and married 18-year-old heiress Elizabeth Hooten on September 6, 1764. She died in 1772, leaving him with four children: Elizabeth, Joseph and Richard. Before his death in 1775 he was engaged to Mercy Scollay. While practicing medicine and surgery in Boston, he joined the Masonic Lodge of St. Andrew, which had received a warrant from the Grand Lodge of Scotland in 1756, he was Master of the Lodge in 1769 at the same time. Warren was appointed Grand Master of the newly established Provincial Grand Lodge of Massachusetts in that same year.
He became involved in politics, associating with John Hancock, Samuel Adams, other leaders of the broad movement labeled Sons of Liberty. Warren conducted an autopsy on the body of young Christopher Seider in February 1770, was a member of the Boston committee that assembled a report on the following month's Boston Massacre. Earlier, in 1768, Royal officials tried to place his publishers Edes and Gill on trial for an incendiary newspaper essay Warren wrote under the pseudonym A True Patriot, but no local jury would indict them. In 1774, he authored a song, "Free America", published in colonial newspapers; the poem was set to a traditional British tune, "The British Grenadiers."Joseph Warren joined the Scottish Rite Freemasonry, being initiated in the St. Andrew's Lodge, becoming Past Provincial Grand Master of Massachusetts; as Boston's conflict with the royal government came to a head in 1773–75, Warren was appointed to the Boston Committee of Correspondence. He twice delivered orations in commemoration of the Massacre, the second time in March 1775 while the town was occupied by army troops.
Warren drafted the Suffolk Resolves, which were endorsed by the Continental Congress, to advocate resistance to Parliament's Coercive Acts, which were otherwise known as the Intolerable Acts. He was appointed President of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, the highest position in the revolutionary government. In mid-April 1775, Warren and Dr. Benjamin Church were the two top members of the Committee of Correspondence left in Boston. On the afternoon of April 18, the British troops in the town mobilized for a long-planned raid on the nearby town of Concord, before nightfall word of mouth had spread knowledge of the mobilization within Boston, it had been known to rebel leadership for weeks that General Gage in Boston had plans to destroy munitions stored in Concord by the colonials, it was known that they would be taking a route through Lexington. Some unsupported stories argue that Warren received additional information from a placed informant that the troops had orders to arrest Samuel Adams and John Hancock.
However, there is little evidence of this as the troops had no such orders. Regardless, Warren learned there was some British expedition to begin that night, so sent William Dawes and Paul Revere on their famous "midnight rides" to warn Hancock and Adams in Lexington. Warren slipped out of Boston early on April 19, during that day's Battle of Lexington and Concord, he coordinated and led militia into the fight alongside William Heath as the British Army returned to Boston; when the enemy were returning from Concord, he was among the foremost in hanging upon their rear and assailing their flanks. During this fighting Warren was nearly killed, a musket ball striking part of his wig; when his mother saw him after the battle and heard of his escape, she entreated him with tears again not to risk life so precious. "Where danger is, dear mother," he answered, "there must your son be. Now is no time for any of America's children to shrink from any hazard. I will set her free or die." He turned to recruiting and organizing soldiers for the Siege of Boston, promulgating the Patriots' version of events, negotiating with Gen. Gage in his role as head