This Day in History: Americans’ first capture of an armed British ship

On this day in 1776, the Continental Navy captures the HMS Bolton. The Bolton was the second British ship to be captured in only two days. The episode marked the first time that an American ship had been able to take an armed British ship. What a moment that must have been! If only the […]

This Day in History: Mary Draper, unsung hero after Lexington & Concord

On this day in 1719, an American heroine is born. No books would ever be written about this woman. She would never receive any awards or a pension for her service. She simply did what she could: Mary Draper cooked for the men who were rushing towards Boston in the wake of the “shot heard […]

This Day in History: The guy who spied on Benjamin Franklin

On this day in 1777, Dr. Edward Bancroft embarks on a journey to France. He plans to work as a spy! Bancroft would work directly with Benjamin Franklin, but he would use his position to feed information to the British. Or could he have been a double agent, working for both sides? Bancroft was born […]

This Day in History: “As for me, give me liberty or give me death!”

On this day in 1775, Patrick Henry gives a stirring speech. You’ve almost certainly heard of this one! Henry closed the speech with the unforgettable words: “I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” At the time, Henry was a delegate to the Second […]

This Day in History: Parliament discusses reconciliation with America

On this day in 1775, a member of Parliament rises and gives a speech in the British House of Commons. Edmund Burke urged members to reconcile with the American colonies, before it was too late. He spoke of the “anger and violence” that “prevailed every day more and more.” He feared that “things were hastening […]