Battle of Bunker Hill

Bunker Hill, battle of

battle of Bunker Hill, in the American Revolution, June 17, 1775. Detachments of colonial militia under Artemas Ward, Nathanael Greene, John Stark, and Israel Putnam laid siege to Boston shortly after the battles of Lexington and Concord. However, Thomas Gage, British commander in the city, made no attempt to break the siege until he was reinforced (in May) by troops led by William Howe, Sir Henry Clinton, and John Burgoyne. The Continental forces learned of the British plan to take the heights of Dorchester and Charlestown, and William Prescott was sent to occupy Bunker Hill outside Charlestown. Prescott instead chose the neighboring Breed's Hill to the southeast, but the engagement that ensued has become known as the battle of Bunker Hill. Howe was ordered to attack the American position, and after two slaughterous failures a third charge dislodged the Americans, who had run out of powder. The British victory failed to break the siege, and the gallant American defense heightened colonial morale and resistance.

See T. Fleming, Now We Are Enemies (1960); R. M. Ketchum, The Battle for Bunker Hill (1962); N. Philbrick, Bunker Hill (2013).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Battle of Bunker Hill: Selected full-text books and articles

The Struggle for American Independence By Sydney George Fisher Books for Libraries Press, vol.1, 1971
Librarian's tip: Chap. XXVIII "Bunker Hill", and Chap. XXIX "Incidents and Results of Bunker Hill"
Washington: Commander in Chief By Thomas G. Frothingham Houghton Mifflin, 1930
Librarian's tip: Chap. VIII "The Battle of Bunker Hill"
FREE! The Great Speeches and Orations of Daniel Webster: With an Essay on Daniel Webster as a Master of English Style By Daniel Webster; Edwin P. Whipple Little, Brown, 1879
Librarian's tip: "The Bunker Hill Monument" begins on p. 123
A primary source is a work that is being studied, or that provides first-hand or direct evidence on a topic. Common types of primary sources include works of literature, historical documents, original philosophical writings, and religious texts.
FREE! Studies Military and Diplomatic, 1775-1865 By Charles Francis Adams Macmillan Company, 1911
Librarian's tip: Chap. I "The Battle of Bunker Hill"
FREE! The True History of the American Revolution By Sydney George Fisher J.B. Lippincott, 1902
Librarian's tip: Chap. XV "Bunker Hill"
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