common or beyond to the North
bridge in Concord
to feel the consciousness that in that region lay the first battle of the Revolution.
One need not scan the roadside markers or read the inscription on the larger monuments.
That whole country side of Middlesex county
speaks of the days of 1775.
The long established roads leading from town to town, the stone walls skirting the highways, the ample houses fitting snugly to the ground against the winter's cold, the generous chimneys where the wood smoke drifted upward from broad hearths, the great elms, the relics of old orchards, the spreading fields and woodlands, all speak of the days of 1775 when families, that were large, lived uncrowded along the Middlesex highways.
Indeed, is there not stamped upon the imagination of the school boy of today who lives in this and neighboring towns the half-formed picture of that day?
Is there not, in the consciousness of all of us, the proud heritage that hereabouts was enacted the first scene of a drama of momentous import?
Before the years take us farther from it, let us pause after the century and a half to bring to mind the spring days of 1775.
When March turned to April one hundred and fifty years ago it ushered in an uneasy spring for the colonists of Great Britain
in North America
, in Boston
and the neighboring towns, a new restlessness, stimulated as it were by the rays of the spring sunshine, permeated life itself.
It was the outcome of what had gone before.
For ten years, in fact, there had been gathering on the part of the colonists of Massachusetts
against the mother country resentment, resistance, defiance, and finally determination and action to protect and preserve their liberties by force of arms.
The cause lay ten years back in the policy of the English Parliament to impose arbitrary taxes upon the colonists.
In 1763 England
had wrested from France
supremacy in North America
In that seven years struggle the colonists had served the mother country.
In recognition of that fact England
had remitted to the treasury of Massachusetts