This 1943 mural of Crispus Attucks by Herschel Levit is in the Recorder of Deeds building at 515 D St., NW, Washington, D.C. Photo by Carol M. Highsmith, 2010.
PBS says this of Attucks:
In 1770, Crispus Attucks, a black man, became the first casualty of the American Revolution when he was shot and killed in what became known as the Boston Massacre. Although Attucks was credited as the leader and instigator of the event, debate raged for over as century as to whether he was a hero and a patriot, or a rabble-rousing villain. -- PBS
Of course, we don't really know what Crispus Attucks looked like. But, here's a more sedate portrayal of Crispus Attucks - The Brave Soldier of the Revolutionary War, 1770. from 1897. (LOC)
Back in 1770 Paul Revere engraved this representation of Attucks' coffin
It appeared with three others in an illustration in the The Boston Gazette, and Country Journal, March 12, 1770. (LOC)
This image of the Boston Massacre appeared as the frontispiece of The Colored Patriots of the American Revolution by William C. Nell and Harriet Beecher Stowe, 1855.
Crispus Attucks, the First Martyr of the American Revolution, King (now State) Street, Boston,
March 5, 1770.
The Boston Massacre Monument, dedicated on Nov. 14, 1889, is often referred to as the Crispus Attucks Memorial. Cripus Attucks name heads the list of victims. These contemporary photos appeared in A Memorial of Crispus Attucks, Samuel Maverick, James Caldwell, Samuel Gray, and Patrick Carr, from the City of Boston, 1898, a book on the dedication of the Monument published by the Boston City Council.
March 5, 1770
Erected In 1888 by The Commonwealth Of Massachusetts
In Honor Of Those Who Fell
At The/Boston Massacre
The Spirit of Revolution
by Robert Kraus, 1888
From That Moment
We May Date
The Severance of
The British Empire.
On That Night
The Foundation of
Irish Poet John Boyle O'Reilly wrote and performed a poem entitled Crispus Attucks, at the dediction of the monument. Here's one verse.
And honor to Crispus Attucks, who was leader and voice that day;The first to defy, and the first to die, with Maverick. Carr, and Gray.Call it riot or revolution, his hand first clenched at the crown;His feet were the first in perilous place to pull the king’s flag down;His breast was the first one rent apart that liberty’s stream might flow;For our freedom now and forever, his head was the first bid low.
In 1906 The Sons of the American Revolution, SAR, placed this headstone in the Old Granary Grave Yard, The photo below is by Rododentrites.
The Remains of
Victims of the Boston Massacre
March 5th 1770
were here interred by order of the
Town of Boston.
Aged 12 Years
Killed February 22nd, 1770.
The innocent, first victim of the
struggles between the Colonists and
the Crown, which resulted in
Placed by Boston Chapter S.A.R.
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