Eleventh in our series to appear on the first Friday of each month: Boston Firsts Fridays. #BostonFirsts
First Realty Management Corp. was founded in Boston over 50 years ago. We are proud to call this wonderful city our home, and call focus to some of the events & innovations that happened FIRST in Boston.
BF#11 First British Concession to Colonists / Boston Massacre
On March 6, 1770 the colonists of Boston obtained the first concession made by the British towards the colonists prior to the Revolutionary War, when Governor Thomas Hutchinson agreed to remove British troops from the city after the Boston Massacre. It may not seem a famous event ringing with history like the Boston Tea Party or the “Shot Heard Round the World”, but it was precisely events such as this concession which bolstered the nerves and resolve of the colonists and led them on the path towards rebellion.
The Massacre itself is a well-documented event. On the evening of March 5th, 1770 British soldiers stationed at the Custom House were drawn into arguments with a crowd of civilians. Provoked and threatened by the growing crowd, British reinforcements were called in with weapons drawn. Shots were eventually fired into the crowd, killing five men and injuring a half dozen more. Represented by John Adams, most of the soldiers and their captain were acquitted – no order to fire on the crowd had been given; two were found guilty of manslaughter.
Following the shooting, town meetings were held at nearby Faneuil Hall and the Old South Meeting House, and a committee led by Samuel Adams demanded that troops be removed from the city. Hoping to avoid further bloodshed and outright rebellion, Governor Hutchinson reluctantly ordered the troops to quit the city and move to Castle Island in South Boston. No further violence followed, and revolution was avoided for several years.
There is a reenactment of the Boston Massacre each year. 2014 is the 244th anniversary of the event, and actors will dramatize the event on Saturday, March 8th at 7pm at the Old State House at 206 Washington Street. A talk about the time period will precede the reenactment.