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The Shot Heard Round the World?! June 12, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — batestrishadiane @ 1:31 am

The shot heard round the world-was it Lexington or Concord that can claim this as the first shot of the Revolution?  After visiting sites in Lexington and Concord today, I heard varying claims. Everyone knows that the first squirmish was infact in Lexington but was it really the first shot of the Revolution? According to the guide at the North Bridge, the first shots of the Revolution actually occured here because it was an organized military action.  Although much of what we have been told in our history lessons was that the beginning of the Revolution was at Lexington, there are definate alternate interpretations.  This follows along with the idea that the “Past” is what really happened and “History” is the interpretation of that happening.  Along with where the first shot was fired, it is important to think of who fired the first shot as well.  During our time at the North Bridge, we got to participate in and hear 8 first-hand accounts of the events at the North Bridge on April 19, 1775.  Although all 8 people experienced that single event, all accounts revealed details that varied; some more than others.  So…Who fired the first shot?  According to “History” it was the British, but we may never know for sure.  This was an excellent activity to use in the classroom; students must think critically and solve the mystery of a historic event. 

Musket firing at Buckman Tavern

This day was amazing!  I learned so much by just by setting foot on these historic locations.  I wish all teachers, and students for that matter, could experience the sense of pride and patriotism that I felt when I walked onto Lexington Green, or saw the house where John Hancock and Samuel Adams were the night Paul Revere came to warn them of the British troop movements, or even seen the Buckman Tavern where a makeshift hospital was created to tend to the wounded British soldiers.

North Bridge

Off for some witch hunting tomorrow in Salem!!

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5 Responses to “The Shot Heard Round the World?!”

  1. Trisha:

    Be sure to take a look at the recommended posts at the top right-hand corner of the class blog and see what some of your fellow teachers are doing with this assignment.

  2. So, can you clarify what you expect from me specifically? This sounds like you are expecting a 2 page writing not a post. I don’t quite understand what your idea of an adequate blog entails. I’m frustrated with this.

  3. Matt Harris Says:

    Trisha:

    You point out nicely, I think, how historians do their business, particularly as they interpret Lexington and Concord. Frequently we offer conflicting interpretations when we tell a story of a given event, each arguing that ours is the best interpretation. This is what historians call historiography–or the history of history writing. Or historians’ interepretations about the past. It’s our task as readers to discern which account is the most persuasive and why. At our workshop in July we’ll offer strategies to discern good interpretations from bad ones.

    I enjoyed reading your posts.
    Matt

  4. It is all about interpretation isn’t it. It depends on where you are, who you are listening to and how convincing they are. The difficult part comes in deciding which interpretation is correct. I enjoyed your post.

  5. Shannon Says:

    Trisha,
    Standing on the Old North Bridge, I was struck how “modern” our history is in the West. What I mean is that much of our history requires less reclaiming. Here in Massachusetts we are experiencing the “really old” stuff and as a result some of the sites we have visited needed major alterations to return them to their original state and in some cases the changes have in their own way become a part of history. Like you, I like the idea of “history” and “the past”.


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