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Buckman Tavern June 9, 2012

Posted by flashbuzzer in History.
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I recently visited the Buckman Tavern in Lexington. This museum is dedicated to telling the story of John Buckman and the events that surrounded the Battle of Lexington.

Here are three nuggets that I gleaned from my time at the museum.

1. Along with owning his famous tavern, John Buckman was a farmer with a sizable head of cattle – yet Buckman viewed himself as a gentleman. Now the typical 18th century New England family had six children – who could be put to work at a young age, assisting with various household chores. Yet Buckman and his wife had no children; most likely they employed apprentices and even slaves to assist them in running their tavern. These apprentices and slaves would engage in tasks such as churning butter, stuffing sausages and toasting bread.

2. William Diamond served as a drummer boy in the Lexington militia that gathered on the morning of April 19, 1775 to face the approaching British troops. Drums and fifes were typically used at that time to signal troops over the course of a battle, as the roar of musket fire would drown out a commander’s shouts. When the firing on the Battle Green commenced, Diamond was so fearful that he ran from the fighting and hid behind a stone wall.

3. On the evening of April 18, 1775, Elijah Sanderson watched several British soldiers gallop through Lexington; interestingly, they were wearing overcoats to conceal their red uniforms. Intrigued, Sanderson and several of his friends followed the soldiers, yet they were caught; Paul Revere would later join them as a British prisoner. After being questioned, Sanderson and his friends were released, and he returned to Buckman Tavern where he fell asleep. He was awakened by a call to arms and ran to the Battle Green. Yet he had loaned his musket to his brother, so he was unable to participate in the battle; instead, he observed the fighting, and much of our knowledge of the battle stems from his eyewitness account.

I enjoyed standing in the room where the members of the Lexington militia gathered to await the arrival of the British forces. Also, the tour guide was very friendly and informative, and she highlighted the various idiosyncrasies of life in 18th century Lexington.

I don’t have any quibbles at this time.

Overall I enjoyed my time at the museum, and I would definitely recommend it to history buffs who are exploring the Lexington area.

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