Minute Men and Their World

Simsbury Mine in Connecticut. This mine was used as a prison for Loyalists and suspected Loyalists during the Revolutionary War. It can’t have been a pleasant place.
Learn more about it at the Journal of the American Revolution

 be a Tory in the northern colonies was to understand and fear the consequences of confinement at the infamous copper mine of Simsbury, Connecticut.  Although already in use as a Loyalist prison, the mine gained official approval for use by the Assembly early in 1776.  It quickly gained a reputation as a dismal environment where “the light of the Sun and the light of the Gospel are alike shut out from the martyrs.”The assembly approved an original expenditure of 37 pounds to make the mine escape proof but they still had a good deal of trouble maintaining a lid on the prisoners below.
The mine dated back to 1737 when the landowner, Samuel Higley, started a copper coin operation.  He dug copper and minted 3 penny coins for a number of years but the neighbors felt the coins were overvalued and subsequent devaluation caused Higley to cease production after a few years.  Late in 1773 the colonial legislature needed a place to put Loyalists in need of confinement.  They convinced the current landowner, John Viets, that he should modify the old mine and go into the prison business.

Simsbury Mine in Connecticut. This mine was used as a prison for Loyalists and suspected Loyalists during the Revolutionary War. It can’t have been a pleasant place.

Learn more about it at the Journal of the American Revolution

 be a Tory in the northern colonies was to understand and fear the consequences of confinement at the infamous copper mine of Simsbury, Connecticut.  Although already in use as a Loyalist prison, the mine gained official approval for use by the Assembly early in 1776.  It quickly gained a reputation as a dismal environment where “the light of the Sun and the light of the Gospel are alike shut out from the martyrs.”The assembly approved an original expenditure of 37 pounds to make the mine escape proof but they still had a good deal of trouble maintaining a lid on the prisoners below.

The mine dated back to 1737 when the landowner, Samuel Higley, started a copper coin operation.  He dug copper and minted 3 penny coins for a number of years but the neighbors felt the coins were overvalued and subsequent devaluation caused Higley to cease production after a few years.  Late in 1773 the colonial legislature needed a place to put Loyalists in need of confinement.  They convinced the current landowner, John Viets, that he should modify the old mine and go into the prison business.

Freshly fired Brown Bess.
These scraps of fabric represent the only identifying record of each infant. Mothers would leave these fabrics (or sometimes mementos) with the hospital so that they could recognize the child when they came back for them. Records show that children were rarely reclaimed, but the tokens were nonetheless kept by the Hospital. These swatches were often cut from the child’s clothes which would have often been made from left over material from the mother’s clothing. Because of this custom, the collection gives a rare insight into textiles and fashion available to ordinary working women of the 18th century.
Threads of Feeling
Late 18th century button samples for a button salesman. 

Late 18th century button samples for a button salesman. 

peashooter85:

Double barrel flintlock pistol with folding bayonet presented by King George III to Sir Henry Clinton, commander of British Forces during the American Revolution. Pistol crafted by Robert Wogdon of London in 1760.

(Source: rockislandauction.com)

This ship was discovered underneath the World Trade Center in 2010 as construction crews were clearing the ground for the rebuilding projects. The ship has been dated to 1773 and was built in Philadelphia from the same type of trees as were used to build Independence Hall.

(Source: livescience.com)

thegentlemanscloset:

Banyan & waistcoat cut from Chinese dragon robe, mid-18th century. Made of silk. I love both the colors and the pattern on this one. Banyans were designed to model Chinese clothing, and the owner of this magnificent banyan decided to go the full treatment with dragon motifs throughout. 

In the 18th century banyan could refer to either the robe worn at home, or to a similar style of coat. They were not slept in, despite sometimes being called nightgowns. 

thegentlemanscloset:

Banyan & waistcoat cut from Chinese dragon robe, mid-18th century. Made of silk. I love both the colors and the pattern on this one. Banyans were designed to model Chinese clothing, and the owner of this magnificent banyan decided to go the full treatment with dragon motifs throughout. 

In the 18th century banyan could refer to either the robe worn at home, or to a similar style of coat. They were not slept in, despite sometimes being called nightgowns. 

(Source: facebook.com)

Grenadiers of the First Foot Guards at the Ft. Ticonderoga Defiance & Independence Reenactment. 
Note the variety of caps being worn and especially the lack of the tall bearskin caps we associate with the grenadiers. British soldiers regularly modified their uniforms to fit local conditions, and grenadiers would often abandon their bearskin caps while out in the field. 
Love this shot. A team from the Continental Artillery pull a cannon into position.

Douglas Sherlock, a bombardier, in the Continental Army, help pull the canon, during a Revolutionary War reenactment held at the Princeton Battlefield, May 25, 2013
Moving the cannon into place. Colonial Williamsburg reenactors