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[69] a flank-guard, and firing on the main body as it passed, those who rushed out to harass its rear, found themselves between two fires, and several fell.

Jason Russell was a prominent citizen in this Precinct, of whom a particular account is given in the Genealogies. A stone in the Precinct burying ground contains the following inscription, apparently composed by the Rev. Samuel Cooke:

Mr. Jason Russel was barbarously murdered in his own house by Gage's bloody troops, on the 19th of April, 1775, aetatis 59. His body is quietly resting in this grave with Eleven of our friends, who in like manner, with many others, were cruelly slain, on that fatal day. Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord.’

Historians have generally considered Russell a noncomba-tant, but he sent his family to a place of safety, and seems to have been determined to remain at his house. Smith says, ‘He barricaded his gate with bundles of shingles, making what he thought would be a good cover from which to fire on the enemy as they returned. Ammi Cutter, his neighbor, came from his house across the brook to see Mr. Russell, and advised him to go to a place of greater security. He refused, saying, An Englishman's house is his castle’ Cutter left him, and narrowly escaped being shot by British flankers, on the other side of the road; their bullets striking the bark off the logs, among which he fell, at the neighboring mill, and scattering some silver money in his trowsers pocket.1

Smith further says, that the flanking party south of the road made a circuit along the foot of the hill, and drove the Americans, unsuspiciously lying in wait there, down upon the main body, and finding no other chance of escape they rushed into Russell's house. Russell, who seems to have been with them outside, followed them, and was killed by the British, who entered the house, killing all they found inside, save a few who fled to the cellar, the latter shooting whoever of the British attempted to descend the cellar-stairs.

It is probable the greater number of the Americans who were killed in Menotomy on that day were killed around this house.

1 Statement by a son of Mr. Cutter.

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