Battles of Lexington & Concord Lesson for Kids: Summary & Facts

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Philip McMurry

Philip has taught college history, English, and political science, and he has a doctorate in American history.

The Battles of Lexington and Concord set the stage for the American Revolution. Examine the events that led up to these early battles, learn how the colonial militia was formed, and meet the courageous colonists who defied the British Empire. Updated: 01/03/2022

Colonists vs. Great Britain

Do you like playing hide and seek? Sometimes, it's more fun to be the one who hides than the one who seeks, isn't it? Well, the battles of Lexington and Concord also involved a game of hide and seek. Let's see how.

Throughout the 1760s and early 1770s, the British colonists in America - especially in Massachusetts - became increasingly upset with the British Parliament. This was because the British Parliament raised their taxes and restricted their freedoms in a variety of ways. The colonies expressed their frustration with acts of defiance, like the Boston Tea Party and the destruction of the Gaspee, a British naval vessel. The British Parliament responded with the Intolerable Acts, which were a series of laws meant to punish Massachusetts.

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  • 0:04 Colonists vs. Great Britain
  • 0:44 First Continental Congress
  • 1:17 British Response
  • 1:41 Scuffle at Lexington
  • 2:11 Search of Concord
  • 2:59 Lesson Summary
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First Continental Congress

At the First Continental Congress, representatives from 12 of the 13 colonies met in Philadelphia in the fall of 1774 to decide what to do about the Intolerable Acts. Some colonists, such as Patrick Henry, wanted to threaten the government with rebellion if it refused to repeal the Intolerable Acts. However, most of the colonists wanted to boycott British goods instead. The Continental Congress created groups called Committees of Safety for the purpose of stockpiling weapons and ammunition for their militia (or part-time soldiers) in case they had further trouble with the British authorities.

Of course, the British government didn't want their colonists to have weapons and ammunition. In the spring of 1775, the British army decided to send soldiers to Lexington and Concord to capture these valuable weapons. However, by this point, the colonists had several spies working among the British. They warned Paul Revere, who along with a few others, rode throughout the countryside to warn the people of Massachusetts that the British were coming.

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