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The Midnight Ride of ... Sybil Ludington

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After all, the movements of hundreds of troops in Boston preparing for a "surprise" attack could hardly be completely concealed. This advance warning enabled the citizens of Concord, which housed a repository for munitions and supplies, to secrete the arms away in barns, wells and swamps before the British arrived to confiscate them.

So the lanterns were primarily for getting the message out to the dozens of anonymous riders who waited to carry the alarm that night. And to avoid British suspicion, the lights would have only been posted in the bell tower for a minute or so. Revere probably never even saw them.

Revere and Dawes both made it to Lexington via disparate routes, Revere having narrowly escaped capture at least once. They relayed the warning to Adams and Hancock, and after midnight, decided to continue to Concord.

The two were joined by Samuel Prescott, a young doctor who was just "returning from a lady friend's house at the awkward hour of 1 a.m."   Some accounts reference "the lady" as a fiancee, others say she was the wife of a tavern keeper, from whose premises the good doctor was enthusiastically removed upon his discovery.

Either way, the fates deftly employed Prescott's affairs to help promote the Patriot cause.

The three riders took off from Lexington for Concord, but within a few miles were captured by British Regulars. Prescott quickly executed his second escape of the evening, and was the only one to bring the warnings to Concord that fateful night. Dawes escaped but fell off his horse and was unable to continue his ride. Revere was detained and interrogated at length, but was released barely in time to see the opening shots of the Revolution.

As a spunky suffragette, my grandmother would have welcomed the more feminist story of another Revolutionary rider sometimes called the "female Paul Revere."

Sybil Ludington was from New York's Duchess County, where the other side of my family hails from. She was younger and braver, but much less famous than Paul Revere. And unlike Revere, she did not have the support of other riders.

In 1777, her courageous midnight ride may have single-handedly changed the course of American history.

So in the spirit of equal rights, on the day associated with the mythology of Revere's ride, I offer this historically accurate account of the bravery of a remarkable teenaged heroine.


Sybil Ludington statue by Anna Hyatt Huntington by Original photo from the wiki

The Midnight Ride of Sybil Ludington

by Meryl Ann Butler

Listen my children, to hear the tale

Of the midnight ride of a brave young girl.

On the twenty-sixth of April, in seventy-seven,

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http://www.merylannbutler.com

Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing for over 25 years. She studied art with Harold Ransom Stevenson in (more...)
 
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and so are you.... by GLloyd Rowsey on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 12:28:10 AM
And you ain't ezzakly chopped liva yaself! LOL T... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 12:31:44 AM
I'm sorry I was an adult by the time I found out a... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 12:29:21 AM
Great story! Makes you wonder how many other fasci... by Greg Tamblyn on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 6:01:26 AM
Thank you!LOL I shoulda known you'd have a handful... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 8:30:29 AM
I wonder how many of the Chernobyl 'liquidators' w... by Ned Lud on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 7:27:33 AM
The Soviet code of labor (yes, it existed and was ... by Mark Sashine on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 7:45:37 AM
I think you know more than you tell.That is a dist... by Ned Lud on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 7:58:18 AM
and you crack me up with your "yakkety yack" remar... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:07:17 AM
(K)To know me is to love me. :)-Ned-... by Ned Lud on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:21:27 AM
;-)))))))))... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:34:05 AM
I like hearing that "Soviet code had a provision o... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:06:14 AM
And she did all this riding sidesaddle? I'd love t... by Gail Davis on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 10:09:44 AM
Although in one account I think I read that she do... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 12:03:54 PM
I did a little more research tonight, and the writ... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 1:29:02 AM
Thanks for writing about my hometown hero, Sybil. ... by Jeff Green on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 7:49:44 PM
I'm glad to know about the red stars, Jeff, I hop... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 8:24:15 PM
Delightful article and topic of Sybil Ludington's ... by Nimueh Rephael on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 7:51:03 PM
I am always excited at a chance to explore the gif... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Apr 18, 2011 at 8:27:35 PM
How about any mentioning of Sybil in the official ... by Mark Sashine on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 7:39:43 AM
Is the article you wrote about Martha Corey on thi... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:00:32 AM
click here http: //click hereis called ' Humans a... by Mark Sashine on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:41:12 AM
i will read this today!... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:52:47 AM
I believe that ALL Salem Witches ( men and women),... by Mark Sashine on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 9:00:50 AM
about Grace Sherwood, widowed mother of three, "Wi... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 9:08:05 PM
wink, winkwink, winkoy vey... by Ned Lud on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:07:44 AM
[[CARMGRAV]]The road in the back is Rt 52 in Carme... by Meryl Ann Butler on Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 at 8:50:26 AM