William French of Westminster, Vermont

The precedence as to the time and place where blood was first shed in the Revolution is claimed for Westminster, Vermont, where, more than a month before the affair at Lexington, officers of the crown in endeavoring to subdue a mob, caused the death of one of the rioters. The event is recorded in an epitaph inscribed upon a slab of slate in the old burial-ground at Westminster, in the following words:

"In Memory of WILLIAM FRENCH, son to Mr. Nathaniel French, who was Shot at Westminister, March ye 13th, 1775, by the hands of Cruel Ministerial tools of George ye 3d, in the Court-house at a 11 O'clock at Night, in the 22nd year of his Age.

Here William French his Body lies, For Murder his Blood for Vengeance Cries. King George the third his Tory crew tha with a bawl his head Shot threw. For Liberty and his Country's Good he Lost his Life, his Dearest Blood.

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