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.

Follow by Email


Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Selig on Rochambeau at Washington’s Headquarters, 11 Dec.

On Thursday and Friday, 4 and 5 December, Longfellow House–Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site in Cambridge will host its annual Holiday Open House, this year in conjunction with the Friends Meetinghouse, the choir of the Latter-Day Saints Church, and other institutions in the neighborhood. I’ll be volunteering there on Thursday.

But the big news from that site is that on the following Thursday, 11 December, Dr. Robert A. Selig will speak on “‘A Journey of Instruction’: General Rochambeau Visits Washington’s Headquarters.”

Jean-Baptiste Donatien de Vimeur, comte de Rochambeau (shown here), was the French commander who brought troops to the young United States in 1780. On 13 December, he wrote to Gen. George Washington from Boston, “I came here, to make a journey of instruction, and to admire the brilliant Campaign which your Excellency made.” Later Washington and Rochambeau led the bulk of their troops south to Yorktown, winning that decisive siege. Their route through nine states was recently designated the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail.

Robert A. Selig holds a Ph.D. in History from the Universitaet Wuerzburg (Germany) and serves as Project Historian to the National Park Service in connection to the Washington-Rochambeau trail. His talk will focus on Rochambeau’s activity in Massachusetts.

This event is cosponsored by the Massachusetts Lafayette Society and the Friends of Longfellow House–Washington’s Headquarters. It’s free and open to the public, but to reserve a seat call the site at 617-876-4491. The talk is scheduled to start at 6:30 P.M. in the carriage house at the rear of 105 Brattle Street; at that time some parking spaces along Brattle Street to the west become legal for all.

(Longfellow–Washington was also the site of a memorable dinner for French naval officers in 1781.)

No comments: