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Henry Knox Delivers Ticonderoga Cannons to George Washington in Cambridge in January 1776

 

Knox Trail Marker in Cambridge, MA 

On January 24, 1776,  25 year old Boston bookseller and American revolutionary war hero Henry Knox reported to General George Washington in Cambridge that he and his volunteers had just transported 59 cannons and artillery 300 miles, from Fort Ticonderoga in  New York to eastern Massachusetts, in the dead of winter.  

Image Courtesy of Marching the Knox Trail

The plan was to position the cannons atop Dorchester Heights in South Boston and aim them at the British fleet in Boston Harbor 

On March 5, British General Howe saw the guns aiming down at his fleet, and by March 17, 1776, the British troops, along with their sympathizers, evacuated Boston, ending the eleven month Siege of Boston. The daring standoff was known as Evacuation Day, and is still celebrated in Boston each March 17th.  Read more about Dorchester Heights.

Knox (1750-1806) later became a Major General and artillery commander through the Revolutionary War, and was the nation's first U.S. Secretary of War under President Washington.

Knox’s father and uncles were original members of the Charitable Irish Society, formed in 1737 to help other Irish immigrants settle in Boston.  A bookseller by trade, Knox joined the Society in 1772, when he was 22 years old.  He also became a member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick in Philadelphia.  

Knox died in ThomastonMaine in 1806, where today the Henry Knox Museum is located.

For more about Boston Irish history, visit IrishHeritageTrail.com

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