There are so many times that I have heard people, including myself, say that we are getting too old for the conflicts that are to come. It’s easy to think that the trials that we all see as inevitable are for young men, and let’s face it, many of us cannot consider ourselves to be young any longer. So let’s take comfort in the story of Samuel Whittemore.

Samuel was not a young man when he enlisted in the Third Massachusetts Regiment and fought the French in Canada. He was 49 years old when he killed a French officer and took his sword as a war trophy.

Mr. Whittemore wasn’t done. He fought again against Chief Pontiac in the Great Lakes region at 67 years old as he led troops against the French and Indians. During that conflict, he took a pair of dueling pistols as war trophies.

For the next decade or so, he became a respected leader in the civic arena. He lobbied against the government, speaking out and being a general pain in the ass. He protested the government’s actions, complaining about this and that, went to meetings of government, and represented his town as a member of the Committee of Correspondence. That was how it came to be that, in 1772, Whittemore was one of the three contributors to Cambridge, Massachusetts’ statement in objection to the Tea Act:

If we cease to assert Our rights we shall dwindle into supineness and the chains of slavery shall be fast rivetted upon us 

Then came the day when Samuel Whittemore’s family found him in his farm’s field, lying in a pool of blood, and even the town’s doctor didn’t believe that he would survive. British soldiers had left Samuel Whittemore in a pool of blood alongside a stone wall in Menotomy, Mass. after shooting the old farmer in the face, then bayoneted him at least six times and clubbed him, apparently, to death as they retreated from the skirmish at Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775. Samuel was 78 years old.

Located near him were the bodies of three British soldiers: one shot by a musket, another by a dueling pistol, and a third run through with an ornate French sword.

Samuel survived that day, against all odds, and lived to the ripe old age of 96. He is currently buried in Arlington, Massachusetts.

The marker got his age wrong.

Massachusetts would not honor his heroism for another 230 years, when in 2005, Captain Samuel Whittemore was made the official state hero of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

This is the reason why we stand for the National Anthem, to honor men such as this.


It's just Boris · May 1, 2023 at 7:06 am

Pity the state seems to have not just forgotten, but actively renounced, his example.

Dan · May 1, 2023 at 1:02 pm

Great Piece! thank you I needed that…
and keep up the good work…

SoCoRuss · May 1, 2023 at 4:51 pm

Yep, getting a little too old to hump rucks, kick doors and provide bounding fire. BUT, You can find a nice comfy old guys perch with around a few hundreds yards of clear fire coverage, get a cooler of ice cold non tranny beer and sit back and play a nice game of whack a commie.

There is one benefit to getting old, the threat of death or life in prison really doesn’t mean much anymore

Mike Hendrix · May 1, 2023 at 11:15 pm

Hey, there’s always magazines to be loaded, bandages to be wrapped, packs to be loaded, equipment to be refurbished, caches to be filled, intelligence to be gleaned, gathered, and disseminated. There’s always a role for us broke-down old dogs to fill, if we only open our eyes and look for it.

Jolly Roger · May 1, 2023 at 11:57 pm

Youth is wasted on the young and wisdom is wasted on the old.
Let the young and duped be haters, all they really have is youthful energy with high hormone levels, there is a reason why the old fox grew grey.
No sharing any of that wisdom with the useful idiots raging on behalf of the machine.

Wyowanderer · May 2, 2023 at 10:48 am

I first heard about Samuel Whittemore fifteen years ago at an Appleseed event. Highly recommended.

Ritchie · May 3, 2023 at 8:37 pm

Also, supposedly when he was found, he was trying to reload.

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