Paul Reveres Ride Essay

1794 words - 7 pages

Paul Reveres Ride

Paul Revere's Ride is a collection of historical accounts centering around Paul Revere's midnight ride to warn the countryside of the battles that occurred. The novel is made up of narrative accounts that tell the whole story of the midnight ride. David Hackett Fischer goes to great lengths to cover every possible angle in telling the story. "Fischer illuminates the figure of Paul Revere, a man far more complex than a simple artisan and messenger"(3). By adding different perspectives he allows the reader to see not only the American idealistic point of view, but we get a chance to hear British accounts of these particular events. In this way Hackett Fischer paints an accurate and unbiased picture not only of Paul Revere and his ride, but also of many other supporting historical figures that were important in making these events happen.

Paul Revere's Ride also does an outstanding job of giving the reader a more in-depth perspective about these events by providing a number of first hand accounts from various sources. This technique personalizes the events to the reader and allows him or her to feel more connected to the people in the novel. One such account takes place when Hackett Fischer describes the "Ipswich Fright". "All the horses and vehicles in the town were put in requisition: men, women, and children hurried as for life toward the north. Large numbers crossed the Merrimack, and spent the night in deserted houses of Salisbury, whose inhabitants, stricken by the strange terror, had fled into New Hampshire “(171). Instead of merely saying that people were in a panic, this accounts adds strength to his assertions. With this detail, the reader can actually make a visual picture the type of panic that took place.

Hackett Fischer's in depth descriptions of the typical attire of the participants in these events was also very helpful in allowing the reader to feel more connected with what really happened. Hackett Fischer describes the uniforms of many of the various ranks of British soldiers. Specifically, he describes the British Regulars in great detail.

"The most distinctive part of the uniform was the heavy red coat. For
grenadiers and line companies this was a garment with long tails that
descended nearly to the knee. The light infantry wore short jackets
that ended at the hip, and were much preferred on active service"(121).

This passage not only helps the reader to picture what the Regulars looked like, but it speaks about the strict regimentation of the British soldiers. These "heavy red coats” were required and any straying from this strict dress code was "to be kept immaculate on pain of a flogging"(119). The author suggests, "The uniform of the British soldier in 1775 might have been designed by some demonic tailor who had sworn sartorial vengeance upon the human frame"(118).

The military uniforms of the British also radiated a uniquely British quality. An air of...

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