The original engraving plate for Paul Revere's


Imagining the Boston Massacre

Imagining the Boston Massacre is the latest lesson in our lesson plan series Imagining the Revolution, which challenge students to go beyond obvious questions about the literal accuracy of images to consider them as valuable sources for understanding how artists and their audiences understood the events depicted.

This lesson, written for middle and high school, asks students to interpret depictions of the deadly confrontation between Bostonians and British troops on the evening of March 5, 1770, by examining engravings by Henry Pelham and Paul Revere of Boston and Jonathan Mulliken of Newburyport, Massachusetts, as well as later versions of the same image. The goals of the lesson are for students to understand the importance contemporaries attached to the event and how the event reflected and shaped colonial resistance to British authority. Seen here is the original engraving plate for Revere’s The Bloody Massacre perpetrated in King-Street Boston, on display in the Commonwealth Museum in Boston.


Imagining the Boston Massacre



Now Online

Registration Open for Author's Talk on American Neutrality

Register now for an online author’s talk on Navigating Neutrality: Early American Governance in the Turbulent Atlantic by Professor Sandra Moats of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. In her new book, Professor Moats explores the origin and impact of George Washington’s Neutrality Proclamation of 1793, including the role of the Society of the Cincinnati in its creation. This free event takes place on Tuesday, November 16 at 6:30 p.m.

Pepper-Pot by Krimmel is a graphic image in the American Revolution Institute exhibition America's First Veterans.


America's First Veterans

Over a quarter of a million Americans served in the armed forces that won our independence. Those who survived became America’s first veterans—the world’s first veterans of an army of free men. You can explore this theme and the art, artifacts, books and manuscripts in the exhibition in our new companion book, America’s First Veterans.


The People’s Constitution

In 1787 Thomas Jefferson was in Paris, wasting his time as ambassador from a government that had so little authority that the French government could safely ignore it.

Many of Jefferson’s American friends, including James Madison, were deeply concerned about violent unrest driven by […]