Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Boston Historians Back Palin’s Paul Revere Claim

June 6, 2011 by  

Boston Historians Back Palin’s Paul Revere Claim

Sarah Palin caused a media controversy on Thursday when she claimed American folk hero Paul Revere “warned the British” during his famous 1775 midnight ride. However, several Bostonian historical experts have stepped forward to defend Palin’s account.

“Basically when Paul Revere was stopped by the British, he did say to them, ‘Look, there is a mobilization going on that you’ll be confronting,’ and the British are aware as they’re marching down the countryside, they hear church bells ringing — she was right about that — and warning shots being fired. That’s accurate,” Boston University History professor Brendan McConville told the Boston Herald.

The newspaper also quoted Revere himself, who, in a 1798 letter, mentioned telling the British officers who captured him that “there would be five hundred Americans there in a short time for I had alarmed the Country all the way up.”

“Patrick Leehey of the Paul Revere House said Revere was probably bluffing his British captors, but reluctantly conceded that it could be construed as Revere warning the British,” the article read.

“I suppose you could say that,” Leehey told the Herald.

William Jacobson, a law professor at New York’s Cornell University, has also been loud in his support of Palin in his blog.

“It seems to be a historical fact that this happened,” Jacobson said in a blog post. “A lot of the criticism is unfair and made by people who are themselves ignorant of history.”

Special To Personal Liberty

You Sound Off! is written by our readers and appears the last Wednesday of each month. If you would like to submit an article or letter to the editor for consideration for You Sound Off!, send it to by the Friday before the last Wednesday of the month. To be considered, a submission should be 750 words or less and must include the writer's name, address and a telephone number. Only the writer's name will be published. Anonymous submissions will not be considered.

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Boston Historians Back Palin’s Paul Revere Claim”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at

  • arpjoe

    After Paul Revere left Lexington to go on to Concord and continue the alarm that started at 10:30PM April 18, 1775, he and two others were confronted by a British Army patol early the morning of April 19, 1775. The other two riders with him escaped but Paul Revere was captured. He did not betray the Colonists since it was evident by that time that the British Regular Troops were being opposed by Colonist Militia to prevent General Gage’s plan of the British Army marching to capture Colonist arms at Concord. Paul Revere was just yanking the chain of the Regulars Patrol officer that did not know what General Gages plan was.

    “Paul Revere’s Ride” by David Hackett Fisher has a very interesting, detailed account of April 19, 1775 which is considered the start of the Revolutionary War. But the Revolutionary War was won in the hearts and minds of the Colonists before the first shot was fired.

  • jopa

    Wow! Sarah gets my vote.She knows stuff that wasn’t even taught in school and it sounds like she was tutored by Boston historians.You go girl!!Wanna buy a bridge?

  • Alex Hamilton

    I believe I read about this in a Reader’s Digest article back in the Seventies. Maybe Governor Palin read the same. William Dawes was also involved in warning the Colonist, but Revere got the credit. The way I read it, Paul Revere was one of the first to take advantage of good press.

    Of course most people wouldn’t be aware of this, they didn’t have Facebook back then where they can crap on people using limited facts.

  • THe Right man

    I think warning the British would be Treason. I general one who communicates or makes available military or scientific information or any sketch, plan, model, article, note or document of a military or scientific character to the enemy is considered a traitor.

  • OCMichael

    The Right man says:
    “I think warning the British would be Treason…”

    Uh, there is a not-so-subtle distinction between the concepts of AIDING the Enemy…and telling them in effect:

    “Leave NOW and we’ll let you LIVE.”

    I suppose that subtlety is just lost on some people.

    “If you are far from the enemy, make him believe you are near.”
    –Sun Tzu


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.