A Surprise Attack Before Dawn - May 10
- 2013 5 May
A surprise attack before dawn on MAY 10, 1775, gave America one of its first victories of the Revolutionary War. Ethan Allen, who commanded the Green Mountain Boys of Vermont, captured Fort Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain without the loss of a man by overrunning the stronghold in the early morning while the British were sleeping. Allen, whose statue is now placed in the U.S. Capitol's Statuary Hall, demanded immediate surrendered. The bewildered British captain asked in whose name such a request was being made. Ethan Allen responded: "In the Name of the Great Jehovah and the Continental Congress." Incredibly, 50 cannons were moved from Fort Ticonderoga to a position overlooking Boston Harbor, forcing the British ships to depart. On May 31, 1775, just three weeks after the victory of Fort Ticonderoga, Harvard President Samuel Langdon addressed the Massachusetts Provincial Congress: "If God be for us, who can be against us?..May our land be purged from all its sins! Then the Lord will be our refuge and our strength, a very present help in trouble, and we will have no reason to be afraid, though thousands of enemies set themselves against us."