Home | Sparks | New Massacre Information
In This Issue
On Expedition
Index by Historian
About Sparks
Site Map
 New Evidence Provides More Information on Massacre

March 1, 1770
My Dearest Sister Mary,     
Tension here is rising.  The  Redcoats still remain here in Boston . King George III,  a few weeks ago, repealed the Townshend Acts. Now business is getting back to normal. Hopefully, mother and father told you that I finished my apprenticeship last Christmas and am now working for the Boston Gazette and Country Journal. I do not know how you could not have known. Do you remember when I first left home to go?

It was hard work but I am happy that I completed it. I had the greatest teacher and his shop was just outside of Newport. He always told me things from his apprenticeship days; they were very helpful.  I am now living with a elderly woman whom I help and in trade I may board with her. It was the best I could find. Usually  printers  live above the shop, but there was no room.  

I have seen brother John around town, but I have not talked to him. Cousin Samuel has been very busy lately, organizing the funeral and all. His name, Samuel Adams, has been said a lot around town. Surely you have heard about that. Poor Christopher Seider, he was shot right in the head, and then again in the chest, an awful way to die.  Ebenezer Richardson shot him  when they were all protesting outside of his shop. I heard they were throwing rocks. One hit his wife, and killed her. As you might suspect he is a supporter of the Crown. There was a funeral for young Seider this past week, I watched it go by the shop, but I did not join though I wanted to.

This morning as I was walking to work, I heard the children taunting the Redcoats, saying things like, “Bloodyback” and “Lobsterback” Although I am against them being here, I dislike how they do this to them. One day the karma will come back to them. I will hate to the see that day come.

I arrived to work fairly early today. I got right to work, got my types together, my composing stick, and worked on the article Thomas Johnson sent in about the latest happenings in England. I was halfway done when Benjamin , my manager, came in to tell me that I would have to work late until about 9 o`clock on the 5th of the March. Since I have just started I must always be the one who has to work the extra hours. This means I must walk home that night at that hour - joy.
I have worked a whole fourteen hours today so I must go rest. Good Night.
Your loving sister, Katherine Adams

March 6th,1770   
My Dearest Sister Mary,
I am lucky to be alive. The British have fought back. They have killed five Bostonians. Crispus Attucks, a free black man was killed, the poor soul worked so hard to get to where he was. I  witnessed the whole “massacre” as the Sons of Liberty have called it. I am as you maybe can tell, not happy.

I had to work extra, as you know, so we could finished this weeks’ publication. As I was walking home I saw, right outside the Customs House, a mob of people. I went closer and saw a British sentry being picked on by the townspeople. People were throwing sticks, snow, ice , rocks, and other objects toward him,  There was a foot of snow on the ground and more was coming down so my vision was blurred.

The sentry, who was suddenly knocked down, called for help. Captain Preston, Matthew Kilroy, Hugh Montgomery, and six others arrived pushing through the crowd. I watched as they helped their fellow soldier up. I thought that this would be the end of this whole thing, but I was wrong.

The next thing I knew people were yelling “Fire” at the soldiers and then I heard the church bells ringing. A few moments later housewives and children came out with pails of water and snow. I wondered why they were ringing the bells. There was no fire at all, from what I could see. One word summed up everything happening, confusion. I could tell the soldiers even did not know what was going on. The crowd 'twas not giving up. Fire was still being yelled 'til there was a shot fired. I am not quite sure who it was, but I am thinking that it was Kilroy. He seemed to be angered by everything we colonists do.

The snow was now bloody and everyone was distraught, including me. There have been five people in all killed: Crispus Attucks, as I mentioned earlier; Samuel Gray, who worked at the rope walk; James Caldwell, who was a sailor on an American ship; Samuel Maverick,who was just a young boy at the mere age of seventeen and last but not least, Patrick Carr, a feather maker.

I am going to brother John Adam’s house tomorrow night after work, which by the way  was awfully busy. I am tired from thinking about this, it angers me.  Katherine Adams

March 13,1770
My Dearest Mary,
It has been a whole six days since I have written to you. I am just getting over a small cases of pneumonia. I have not been taking the best care of myself like I should be. I went to the town doctor, and he told me to drink lots of liquids to help my body recover. I should be back to printing soon.

I have much to tell you. It was just yesterday, that we printed the paper with the massacre story. I am sending it along in case you do not get the Boston Gazette in Newport. At work, I shared the story on my account to my colleagues.  I told them in great detail. I guess working the late shift helped .. a little.

I have some news about our brother, John. When I arrived at his home he immediately began to tell me how he felt about the massacre. I learned something very interesting. He has agreed to represent the British soldiers in the trial that will be held along with Josiah Quincy. I was very surprised to hear this from him but he says he wants to show King George III that over here in the colonies everyone is treated equally and may receive a fair trial. I thought, even though I am a Patriot, that it was a very good reason, and I myself might have done the same. He said it would start sometime in October.

I suspect that the soldiers will not be charged with anything much, but I am sure that the prosecutors will have at least one convicted guilty. I wonder if King George has heard yet about what  has happened here? I dare say that once the news is passed on to him he will have no idea what to do next. He has gotten himself into this mess, so he must find a way out. I doubt that is going to happen very soon.  
 Your Sister, Katherine Adams 

Historical References:

Beller,Susan Provost. The Revolutionary War. New York: Marshall Cavendish.     

Fisher,Leonard Everett. The Printers. New York: Benchmark, 200,c 1965.

Garcia,Jesus,Ogle,Donna M., Risinger, C.Frederick, and Stevos, Joyce. Creating America. United States. McDougal Littel,2005.

Hakim,Joy. A History of US: From Colony To Country. Oxford University Press:New York,1993.

Jump,Otak. Your Teacher Take You To Colonial Virginia. 3 April 2006.     <http://www.ohlone.paloalto.ca.us/williamsburg/index.htm>

Murray, Stuart. American Revolution.  New York: DKPublishing, Inc., 2002

Sayers,DeaLea H. Colonial Printing. 3 April 2006.       

Boston Massacre Historical Society. Colonial Williamsburg. 25 April 2006.         <www.bostonmassacre.net/>.

Newspapers in Revolutionary Era American & The Problems of Patriot and Loyalist Printers. National Endowment for the Humanities. 10 April 2006<http://www.assupmtion.edu/ahc/1770s/pprintoryloyal.html7>.

The American Revolution. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, Inc.,1992

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Colonial Williamsburg ; Printer and  Binder. March 31, 2006.    

“The Views from the Crows Nest,” The Boston Massacre. Cobblestone. 27 April 2006:4-5


Artist's Rendering
Historical Reenactment

Historical Terms
Townshend Acts
Massacre Mob
Sentry Patriot
About the Historian
Maura is a seventh-grader at King Middle School and enjoys playing  sports after school. She also loves hanging out with her friends on weekends.
Back to Top