Lexington Battle Green Tour
This statue of John Parker was sculpted by Henry Hudson Kitson. It sits atop of what was originally a fountain for horses. The monument was dedicated on April 19th, 1900. Since Kitson had no image of Parker, he modeled his sculpture after an athletic young man from nearby Medford named Arthur Mather.
Henry Hudson Kitson
Parker, a farmer and woodworker, was also an experienced soldier, having fought alongside the British in the French and Indian War. Already suffering from tuberculosis at the time of the Battle, he died a mere five months later, on September 17, 1775, at the age of 46.
Minutemen facing the Redcoats marching into Lexington on the morning of April 19th, 1775
The statue faces down Massachusetts Avenue, gazing in the direction from which the Redcoats marched into Lexington on the morning of April 19th. General Thomas Gage, commander of the British troops in Boston, had ordered a column of more than eight hundred men to Concord to seize colonial munitions stockpiled there in anticipation of a conflict. The King’s troops planned to take the left fork toward Concord, but found Captain Parker and approximately eighty of his men on the Common. Unwilling to leave an armed force on their flank, the British advanced three companies of Regulars onto the Common. They formed a line near where the flagpole is today…facing the militia. The battle was about to begin.
Gen. Thomas Gage by
John Singleton Copley
John Singleton Copley
In Their Own Words:
“Sir, You will march with Corps of Grenadiers and Light Infantry put under your command, with the utmost expedition and secrecy to Concord, where you will seize and destroy all the Artillery and Ammunition you can find. If any body of men dares to oppose you with arms, you will warn them to disperse or attack them.”
--General Thomas Gage
“I, John Parker…commander of the militia in Lexington…Being informed…a number of the regular troops were on their march from Boston, in order to take the province Stores at Concord, ordered our militia to meet on the common and concluded not to be discovered nor meddle or make with said regular troops (if they should approach) unless they should insult or molest us.”
Directions to next stop:
The next stop is the site of the first three Lexington meetinghouses, stop #3 on your map. Walk a few steps onto the green to the granite pulpit.
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Lexington Historical Society
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