Last updated: January 18, 2023
Historical/Interpretive Information/Exhibits, Pets Allowed, Trailhead, Wheelchair Accessible
"when I got thair a great many lay dead and the road was bloody."
~ Amos Barrett
In the area of Meriam's Corner a small gravestone marks the approximate location of British soldiers killed on April 19, 1775. These soldiers fell in the opening shots of a 16 mile long running battle back to Boston.
While the fighting at Meriam's corner lasted only a few minutes, numerous eyewitnesses recounted casualties left in the wake. Rev. Edmund Foster in Captain Brook's company recalled, "… As soon as the British had gained the main road, and passed a small bridge near that corner, they faced about suddenly, and fired a volley of musketry upon us. They overshot; and no one, to my knowledge, was injured by the fire. The fire was immediately returned by the Americans, and two British soldiers fell dead at a little distance from each other, in the road near the brook."
Years later, in 1858, a local historian recorded a walk near Meriam's Corner with then Governor John Brooks, the same captain of a Reading Minute company in 1775. According to Brooks, the Reading men took position near the Meriam barn and fired "directly at the bridge which was twenty or thirty rods off. As the British army was in great haste to make good its retreat, it fired but one volley in return." The report went on to indicate that nine soldiers were found "hors de combat" near the bridge.
Although the exact number of casualties taken at Meriam's corner remains a mystery, Amos Barrett of Brown's Company painted a striking description saying "…when I got thair a great many lay dead and the road was bloody." Today it is speculated two British soldiers are buried in the proximity of Meriam's Corner and a carved gravestone commemorates the location
Douglas Sabin, April 19, 1775: A Historiographical Study, (Minute Man National Historical Park, Concord, 1987).
Rev. Edmund Foster quoted in Rev. Ezra Ripley, A History of the Fight at Concord, (Allen and Atwell, Concord, 1827), 32-33.
William H. Sumner, A History of East Boston: With Biographical Sketches, (J.E. Tilton and Company, Boston, 1858), 355-356.
Allen French, "An Account by Amos Barrett," in The Concord Fight, (Thomas Todd do.,Boston, 1924), 14.