Bunker Hill, 1775: ‘A Dear Bought Victory'

Henry I. Kurtz shows how the result of this battle depressed the British victors, but they held on to Boston for another nine months.

Shortly after six p.m. on the evening of June 16th, 1775, companies from the Massachusetts Militia regiments of Colonels Prescott, Frye, and Bridge began assembling on the open green of Cambridge Common. It was a pleasant spring day, and the militiamen leaned on their muskets, smoked their pipes, and chatted in small groups.

There was much speculation about the cause of the assembly. Among the troops was Peter Brown, a private and company clerk in Prescott’s regiment, and he later wrote:

... we were ordered to parade at six o’clock with one day’s provisions and blankets ready for a march somewhere, but we knew not where. So we readily and cheerfully obeyed.’

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