DAILY DOSE OF HISTORY: Crispus Attucks – Soldier

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Framingham

It is believed that Crispus Attucks was born into bondage in 1723, in Framingham, Massachusetts. His father was an African Prince who was enslaved and his mother was from the Natick tribe. As a young man, he developed a talent for trading goods. In 1750, The Boston Gazette published an ad, seeking a runaway slave named Crispas. Historians believe that the Gazette was referring to Attucks who had fearlessly escaped bondage.

Work

Attucks earned his living as a seaman. Like other seamen, he lived in fear of being forced to serve the British navy. He also lived in fear of having his job taken by British naval officers in search of part-time work. The tension between the colonists–including Attucks–and the British soldiers was thick.

Conflict

On March 2, 1770, a fight broke out involving Boston rope makers and British soldiers. Three days later, a British soldier walked into a pub seeking employment. Disgruntled seamen confronted the soldier. Among those seamen was Attucks.
Crispus Attucks, Black soldier, Black man, American Revolution, Black History, Black History 365, DDH: Daily Dose of History
Later that evening, angry Bostonians–one of those Bostonians being Attucks–confronted a British soldier and began taunting him. As the conflict escalated, British redcoats came to the soldier’s defense, enraging even more Bostonians. The Bostonians began throwing objects, including snowballs, at the redcoats.

Death

As the conflict worsened, the British redcoats drew their firearms and pointed them at the Bostonians. When the Bostonians did not back down, the redcoats opened fire. Crispus Attucks was the first of five Bostonian men to be shot and killed. He was 47 years old. His death marked the beginning of the American Revolution.

Legacy

The day that Attucks was killed is known as the Boston Massacre. This battle enraged the colonists and prompted them to wage war on the British military. Crispus Attucks later became a martyr. Segregation laws were waived in his case, and his body was buried with the other casualties of the Boston Massacre. Since his death, his valor has been praised by Abolitionists, civil rights leaders, U.S. military personnel, and historians.
Crispus Attucks, Black soldier, Black man, American Revolution, Black History, Black History 365, DDH: Daily Dose of History
**The views and actions of the DDH historical figures that are featured may not reflect the views and beliefs of Ramiro The Writer (Nikodemus Mwandishi). Thank you.**
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