Mrs. Wright & Mrs. Shattuck | Women of the Revolution


    About the author

    Edward St. Germain.
    Edward St. Germain

    Edward A. St. Germain created in 1996. He was an avid historian with a keen interest in the Revolutionary War and American culture and society in the 18th century. On this website, he created and collated a huge collection of articles, images, and other media pertaining to the American Revolution. Edward was also a Vietnam veteran, and his investigative skills led to a career as a private detective in later life.


      The following extract from Butler’s “History of Groton,” may show that the women of Massachusetts were not behind their sisters of other States in patriotic daring.

      “The patriotism of the women in those times ‘which tried men’s souls,’ must not be passed over in silence. After the departure of Colonel Prescott’s regiment of ‘minute-men,’ Mrs. David Wright of Pepperell, Mrs. Job Shattuck of Groton, and the neighboring women, collected at what is now Jewett’s Bridge, over the Nashua, between Pepperell and Groton, clothed in their absent husbands’ apparel, and armed with muskets, pitchforks, and such other weapons as they could find; and having elected Mrs. Wright their commander, resolutely determined that no foe to freedom, foreign or domestic, should pass that bridge. For rumors were rife that the regulars were approaching, and frightful stories of slaughter flew rapidly from place to place, and from house to house.

      “Soon there appeared one on horseback, supposed to be treasonably engaged in conveying intelligence to the enemy. By the implicit command of Sergeant Wright, he is immediately arrested, unhorsed, searched, and the treasonable correspondence found concealed in his boots. He was detained prisoner, and sent to Oliver Prescott, Esq., of Groton, and his despatches were sent to the Committee of Safety.” This was Captain Leonard Whiting, of Hollis, N. H., a noted tory. He was in reality the bearer of despatches from Canada to the British in Boston. An article was some time after inserted in a warrant for town meeting: ‘To see what the town will vote or order to be paid to Mr. Solomon Rogers, for entertaining Leonard Whiting and his guard.’ Not acted upon.

      The worthy author of the History of Groton has omitted, in his account of this transaction, one of the most important and characteristic particulars, which I cannot, as a faithful chronicler, neglect to notice, having received it on the authority of America’s most distinguished historian. The officer thus taken prisoner, being a politic gentleman, and probably somewhat experienced in the tactics of gallantry, endeavored, when thus arrested and disarmed, to win his way by kissing his fair captors. But they were proof against his arts as well as his arms.

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