J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Washington Lecture and “Paul Revere” Reading This Week

On Thursday, 21 November, at Longfellow House–Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site, National Park Ranger Garrett Cloer will speak on the topic “‘Town Devourer’: George Washington, Native Americans, and a Revolutionary War.” The site says:
Join us as we celebrate Native American Heritage Month with an illustrated ranger talk centering on the relationship between George Washington and Native Americans during the American Revolutionary War. To put the war years in context, we will take a quick trip back to Washington’s youthful experiences as surveyor and commander of the Virginia Regiment during the Seven Years War and conclude with a brief examination of Indian policy during the Washington Administration.
Gen. Washington was living in that Cambridge mansion in 1775-76 when he met several times with delegations of Native Americans from different communities. At the time, those meetings were focused mainly on the invasion of Canada. In addition, a company of Native soldiers from Stockbridge was part of the New England army assembled before Washington arrived and remained with the Continental Army during the campaigns that followed.

Cloer is a specialist on Revolutionary history who has previously worked at Minute Man and Independence National Historical Parks. He prepares the essays on Revolutionary history that appear regularly on the Longfellow–Washington Facebook page.

This talk is scheduled to start at 6:00 P.M. in the Longfellow Carriage House. It is free and open to the public. To reserve a seat, please call (617) 876-4491.

On Saturday, 23 November, the staff of Longfellow–Washington will participate in a marathon reading of Henry W. Longfellow’s Tales of a Wayside Inn, an 1863 collection of poetic stories that includes “Paul Revere’s Ride.” Longfellow’s Wayside Inn, a pre-Revolutionary tavern in Sudbury that inspired Longfellow and later took its name from his book, will host this free event.

The reading starts at 11:00 A.M., and folks can sign up to take a turn. But be aware that “Paul Revere’s Ride” comes early in the book. If you arrive later, you’ll end up with something like “Torquemada” or “The Birds of Killingworth.”

(The image above shows a statue of young Washington and Seneca leader Guyasuta near Pittsburgh, courtesy of Mount Vernon’s “Washington Wired” site.)

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