Twenty years ago, a small group of businessmen and former diplomats conceived a plan to build an authentic replica of the French frigate Hermione, the ship that carried Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roche Gilbert du Motier, the Marquis de Lafayette, to America in 1780 with the news of French support for the American Revolution. The group hoped that this project would rekindle close ties between France and the United States, create a lasting educational legacy, and bring life to both Lafayette’s memory and the spirit of liberty that he embodied. The reconstructed Hermione is now a reality and the tall ship is currently en route to the United States, where it will visit twelve ports along the Eastern Seaboard over the course of the summer. Hermione will be docked at Yorktown from 5-7 June, and Alexandria from 10-12 June, and the public are invited to the festivities. A schedule of tours and events can be found at http://hermione2015.com/voyage2015/.
Lafayette played a crucial role in American and Virginia history. Without his dedication to the cause of independence and his ability to persuade others to provide much needed financial and military resources, the outcome of the American Revolution might have been very different. “The moment I heard of America, I lov’d her,” Lafayette recalled in 1778, a year after he set sail from France to … read more »
While examining Prince Edward County court records for chancery suits, former Local Records Archivist Catherine OBrion found a group of declarations to the justices of the peace of Prince Edward County. The declarants were Revolutionary War veterans seeking to obtain pensions under an act of Congress passed on 7 June 1832. The applicants present detailed testimony of their time of service during the Revolutionary War. Information found in the declarations include date and location applicants entered into service, names of military companies they served in, names of military commanders they served under, names of fellow soldiers they served with, length of service, their ages, and their places of birth. The declarations also include affidavits from witnesses who could verify information provided by applicants.
The predominant portion of the declarations consists of narratives of the veterans’ tours of duty during the Revolutionary War. William Hines, age 78, presented an account of his service under General George Rogers Clarke in present-day Kentucky. Clarke’s army was pursuing Native Americans along the Ohio River. Hines shared how, during the campaign, he was severely wounded by two musket balls which broke both bones of his right arm below the elbow. Hines was personally assured by General Clarke that he would receive a pension. William Worsham, age 80, presented an account of his service from the time the war began in 1775 to the British … read more »