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Engraving "The Bloody Massacre perpetrated on King Street, Boston on March 5th, 1770"
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Feelings against the British troops ran high in Boston in 1770. The fact that many English soldiers were moonlighting as dock workers and rope makers made them even less popular among residents whose jobs they were taking. On March 5, 1770 a group of men armed with rocks and clubs began harassing two soldiers on guard duty at the Customs House. Things got uglier when more troops came to assist the guards. When the hard-pressed soldiers fired into the crowd and killed several men, Paul Revere turned tragedy into opportunity. Paul Revere was a Boston silversmith. He was also a member of the Boston Sons of Liberty and a master publicist. His widely distributed engraving of British soldiers firing into an unarmed, peaceful crowd of Bostonians roused American outrage throughout the colonies and made the British army still more unpopular.
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