Originally Posted by ALBOB
So, what is the real story? Did Palin commit one of the most baffling re-tellings of revolutionary history in recent memory, or is she the victim of the sinister "gotcha" media (her nickname for any reporter/organization that asks her questions to which she doesn't have an answer)? The answer is clear, and any objective individual ought to be confident in saying that Palin's version of the story is a piece of historical fraud. A cursory reading of Paul Revere's own telling of the story in his letter to Jeremy Belknap is sufficient to show that this is the case.
In Palin's defense of her remarks, she claims that the British had been in the area of Revere's ride for seven years and that "part of his ride was to warn the British." There was certainly a British presence in that area, as Revere notes, but nothing about his telling of the events of that night suggest that part of his mission was to inform them about the presence of a rebel militia. So, unless Palin means that by warning the rebels Revere was also unintentionally warning the British, her second set of claims has no basis in history. Moreover, if she was referring this supposed unintentional warning, that certainly seems like an odd feature to focus on when asked about Paul Revere's ride.
So what about Malcolm's claims that Revere "warned" the British upon his capture? This is also quite a stretch. This is what Revere claims happened upon his capture in pg. 4 of his letter:
"I observed a Wood at a Small distance, & made for that.When I got there, out Started Six officers, on Horse back, and orderd me to dismount;-one of them, who appeared to have the command, examined me, where I came from, & what my Name Was? I told him. it was Revere, he asked if it was Paul? I told him yes He asked me if I was an express? I answered in the afirmative. He demanded what time I left Boston? I told him; and aded,that their troops had catched aground in passing the River,and that There would be five hundred Americans there in a short time, for I had alarmedthe Countryall the way up.He imediately rode towards those who stoppd us, when all five of them came down upon a full gallop; one of them, whom I afterwards found to be MajorMitchel, of the 5th Regiment, Clapped his pistol to my head,called me by name,& told me he was going to ask mesomequestions, & if Idid not give him true answers, he would blow mybrains out.He thenaskedmesimilar questions to those above.Hethen orderd me to mount my Horse, after searching me for arms. He then orderd them to advance, & to lead me in front. When we got to the Road, they turned down towards Lexington. When we had got about one Mile, the Major Rode up to the officer that was leading me, & told him to give me to the Sergeant. As soonas he took me, the Major orderd him, if I attempted torun, or any body insulted them, to blow my brains out. We rode till we got near Lexington Meeting-house, when the Militia fired a Voley of Guns, which appeared to alarm them very much."As you can see, his "defiant warning" to the British was much less a warning than it was a confession as a result of being interrogated at gunpoint and upon threat of death.