” … the Sons of Liberty, of whom … you … will hear more.”

Anne Hulton, late in 1767, accompanied her brother Henry and his family from England to Boston where he had been named Commissioner of Customs by King George III. Almost from the very moment they set foot on American soil, their lives were in danger. Anne wrote to a friend in England in June of 1768.

You will be surprized to hear how we were obliged … to take Refuge on board the Romney Man of War lying in Boston Harbour. Mrs. Burch at whose house I was, had frequently been alarmed with the Sons of Liberty surroundg her house with the most hideous howlings as the Indians, when they attack an Enemy. … These Sons of Voilence after attacking Houses, breakg Windows, beating, Stoning & bruizing several Gentlemen belonging to the Customs, the Collector mortally, & burning his boat. They consultd what was to be done next, & it was agreed to retire for the night. All was ended with a Speech from one of the Leaders, concludg thus, “We will defend our Liberties & property, by the Strength of our Arm & the help of our God, to your Tents O Israel.” This is a specimen of the Sons of Liberty, of whom no doubt you have heard, & will hear more.

The HMS Romney Man of War was a fifty-gun British frigate stationed in Boston harbor at this time. It was responsible for seizing John Hancock’s ship Liberty as it tried to avoid paying customs duties imposed by the British. The base of British operations in the siege of Boston was Castle William in the harbor. Loyalists repaired there as well as to the Romney when they felt threatened by the Patriots.

This excerpt is from In the Words of Women, Chapter 1, pages 10-11. The image is by Surveyor Pierie William, 1773, and is in the British Library. Read another post by Anne Hulton HERE.

posted August 27th, 2012 by Janet, CATEGORIES: Boston, Loyalists, Patriots, Resistance to British, Violence

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