Name To Know Crispus Attucks

March 30, 2021
Name To Know Crispus Attucks

March 5, 1770


“On that night the formation of American independence was laid.”
Pres. John Adams

Crispus Attucks

  • African-American sailor believed to have escaped slavery 20 years prior.
  • The first of five men to die as a result of the Boston Massacre; reportedly killed instantly when outnumbered British soldiers fired suddenly into a crowd of dozens of angry colonists (protesting British taxes, restrictions, overall rule).
  • Attucks was championed as the first martyr for the cause of American liberty.

Why It Matters:

6 years before the Declaration of Independence, the Boston Massacre created greater momentum for colonists who desired freedom from Great Britain.

Those killed on March 5, 1770 were promoted by the “Sons of Liberty” as martyrs for the cause of freedom; Attucks’ name was the only one to become widely-known.

Lawyer & future U.S. Pres. John Adams' defense of British soldiers led to their acquittal in an American court… an irony since the "Boston Massacre," by its name & story, unified colonists vs. the British & sowed the seeds of the American Revolution.

Crispus Attucks:

by Jenna Lee,