Deposition Taken by Order of the Provincial Congress of Massachusetts
Lexington, April 23, 1775.
We, Nathan Barrett, Captain; Jonathan Farrer, Joseph Butler, and Francis Wheeler, Lieutenants; John Barrett, Ensign;John Brown, Silas Walker, Ephraim Melvin, Nathan Buttrick, Stephen Hosmer, Junior, Samuel Barrett, Thomas Jones, Joseph Chandler, Peter Wheeler, Nathan Peirce, and Edward Richardson, all of Concord, in the County of Middlesex, in the Province of the Massachusetts-Bay, of lawful age, testify and declare, that on Wednesday, the nineteenth instant, about an hour after sunrise, we assembled on a hill near the meeting-house in Concord aforesaid, in consequence of an information,
v2:498that a number of Regular Troops had killed six of our countrymen at Lexington, and were on their march to said Concord: and about an hour afterwards we saw them approaching to the number, as we imagine, of about twelve hundred; on which we retreated to a hill about eighty rods back, and the aforesaid Troops then took possession of the hill where we were first posted. Presently after this we saw them moving towards the North Bridge, about one mile from said meeting-house; we then immediately went before them, and passed the bridge just before a party of them, to the number of about two hundred, arrived. They there left about one-half of these two hundred at the bridge, and proceeded with the rest towards Colonel Barrett' s, about two miles from the said bridge. We then seeing several fires in the Town, thought our houses were in danger, and immediately marched back towards said bridge, and the Troops who were stationed there observing our approach, marched back over the bridge, and then took up some of the planks. We then hastened our steps towards the bridge, and when we had got near the bridge, they fired on our men, first three guns, (one after the other,) and then a considerable number more; upon which, and not before, (having orders from our commanding officer not to fire till we were fired upon,) we fired upon the Regulars, and they retreated. At Concord, and on their retreat through Lexington, they plundered many houses, burnt three at Lexington, together with a shop and a barn, and committed damage, more or less, to almost every house from Concord to Charlestown.
STEPHEN HOSMER, JR˙,