Minute Man Nat'l Hist Park, Mass
The Historical Park ends here, but the Battle Road continues.
The British column broke into a run as they approached Lexington Center. They were saved by a brigade of a thousand fresh troops, armed with two cannon. The commander, Earl Percy, ordered them to be fired. The Colonists scattered and the beleaguered British troops regrouped.
The British force now numbered 1,700, and continued their march through Lexington into Menotomy (present-day Arlington.) The Colonial force had grown to nearly 4,000. Here was the fiercest fighting of the day. The fighting continued into Cambridge. By sundown, the exhausted British troops reached the military safety of Boston harbor. In less than 24 hours, they had marched 20 miles out to Concord, and fought 20 miles back, and were exhausted. By day's end, 273 British regulars and 94 Colonists were killed, wounded or missing.
Of the Colonial troops who came together on Battle Road, not all returned home that evening. Many stayed, and campfires sprung up in a ring around Boston. The Siege of Boston had begun.
The events of April 19, 1775 were but a beginning. Only after years of struggle would the American nation finally emerge.
"We retired . . . under an incessant fire, which like a moving circle surrounded and followed us wherever we went."
— Hugh, Earl Percy
" . . . when we arrived within a mile of Lexington, our ammunition began to fail and the Light companies were so fatigued with flanking they were scarce able to act, and a great number of wounded scarce able to get forward made a great confusion . . . we began to run rather than retreat in order . . ."
— British Ensign Henry DeBerniere