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    Description

    HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS
    Paul Revere Retains His Military Commission

    [Paul Revere] War dated folded letter addressed to "Maj. General Horatio Gates, Present" [Gates was at the time encamped just outside of Boston] datelined "State of Massachusetts Bay, Council Chamber Feby, 27th, 1779". In pertinent part:

    "The Officers belonging to Colo. Crafts' Regiment who have not resigned their commissions are as follows viz.

    Lieut Colo. Paul Revere
    Lieut Wailes
    Lieut Nicholas
    Lieut Gescard..."

    The letter is signed by Jonathan Avery as Deputy Secretary of State and is franked with manuscript "(On Public Service)", indicating postal delivery. Some soiling on the address panel but the letter is clean and Fine.

    Estimate $6,000-$8,000

    AN IMPORTANT LETTER DOCUMENTING REVERE'S DECISION TO RETAIN HIS MILITIA COMMISSION AT A MAJOR TURNING POINT IN HIS MILITARY CAREER.

    In early 1779, plagued by desertion to the higher paid Continental Army and the privateers of the Merchant Marine, Crafts' Regiment of the Massachusetts State Militia was forced to reorganize. Revere, as the highest ranking officer remaining, was offered and accepted command of the regiment. It is believed that he remained out of a sense of duty and his desire to participate actively in America's fight for freedom. His detractors, on the other hand, felt he stayed simply to further his own personal ambition. Regardless of his motives, the decision to stay led to the regiment's participation in the ill-fated Penobscot Expedition in July of 1779, a combined land and sea assault, which became the greatest American naval defeat until Pearl Harbor. The Americans lost all of their ships and had 474 men killed (compared to 12 for the British). Revere, for his part, was accused of disobedience and cowardice, resulting in his dismissal from the militia, though he was later cleared of all charges..




    ‡ The owner placed a late bid on this unreserved lot and repurchased it, subject to applicable commission.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2009
    11th-14th Friday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 988

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