Lexington Concord Staff Ride Field Study

Directions to Battle Road National Park

From:
  • Boston: RT. 2 west to 128 (I-95) North To Hanscom Airforce Base Exit. Left off Ramp.
  • Mass Pike Mass pike to 128 (I-95) North To Hanscom Air Force Base Exit. Left off Ramp.
  • Commercial Airlines: Logan: Follow Direction out of Boston.
  • Commercial Airlines: Worcester: Take Rt 290 East to Rt 495 east. Take Rt 495 East to Rt 2 East. Follow Rt 2 to Concord Rotary. Take third exit off rotary, this road is Barrett's Mill Rd. At next stop sign go straight across Lowell Rd. This will lead you the Old North Bridge Visitors Center.

Map of Massachusetts in the Vicinity of Lexington

Map of the Battle Road

Detailed Terrain Integrity

The terrain of the Battle Road is fairly intact. There are specific areas that have been developed, such as Charlestown, and Menotomy. The best terrain integrity is from The North Bridge, to Lexington Center. The largest difference in terrain integrity is that in 1775 there were considerably fewer trees. The trees that are there now give a false impression of how close the Minutemen were to the British column. The following is a list of pictures taken recently at the specific sites and how they are different and similar to the terrain in 1775.

Useful Numbers and Facilities

Lexington

  • Lexington Chamber of Commerce Visitors Center: 1875 Massachusetts Ave. (602)862-1450
  • Battle Road Visitor Center: Minuteman National Historical Park, Barrett Road (RT 2A), (617)862-7753
  • Buckman Tavern: 1 Bedford St. (617) 862-5598
  • Hancock-Clarke House: 36 Hancock ST. (617) 861-5598
  • Munroe Tavern: 1332 Massachusetts Ave. (617) 861-0928
  • Museum of Our National Heritage: 33 Marrett Rd. (617) 861-6559

Concord

  • The North Bridge Visitor Center: Minuteman National Historical Park (508) 369-6994
  • Concord Museum: Cambridge Turnpike (508) 369-9609

Positions

You will find it useful to familiarize yourself with the military apects of terrain, O.C.O.K.A. The Principles of War should also be reviewed.

  1. Position 1: The Old North Bridge
    1. Situation: British attempt to hold the Concord North Bridge against the approaching militia units. The militia was intent on crossing the bridge and defending Concord, while the British had to hold the bridge to insure a route of egress for CPT Parsons and his search and destroy mission.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Observation and Fields of Fire
        Obstacles
        Avenues of approach.
      2. Principles of War:
        Objective
        Offensive
        Unity of Command.
      3. Leadership:
        British CPT. Lauries decision to retreat to east side of the bridge. Provincial MAJ. Buttrick's decision to march.
  2. Position 2: Meriam's Corner
    1. Situation: After Old North Bridge, the colonists attacked the British column's retreat. This marks the last engagement of the day which the standing order of the provincials was "do not fire unless fired upon." From this point the battle begins in full.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Observation and Fields of Fire
        Obstacles
        Key Terrain
        Avenues of Approach
      2. Principles of War:
        Mass
        Objective
        Security
        Offensive
      3. Leadership:
        Examine the use of Arrowhead Ridge by British. Examine political ramifications of this site. Why did it happen here?
  3. Position 3: Hardy's Hill
    1. Situation: British flankers engage militia units and are pushed back under heavy fire.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Observation
        Cover and Concealment
        Obstacles
        Key Terrain
        Avenues of Approach
      2. Principles of War:
        Objective
        Mass
        Offensive
        Economy of Force
        Suprise
        Security
      3. Leadership:
        Examine Nixon's decision to choose this terrain. Examine units involved. What effect did Nixon's men have on the next battle?
  4. Position 4: Bloody Angle
    1. Situation: Colonists flank and ambush the British column, nearly surrounding it in a ambush that lasted over a half an hour.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Observation
        Cover and Concealment
        Obstacles
        Key Terrain
        Avenues of Approach
      2. Principles of War:
        Offensive
        Maneuver
        Mass
        Economy of Force
        Security
        Suprise
      3. Leadership:
        Examine Smith's Decision to take the corners. Examine Baldwin's and Barretts positions.
  5. Position 5: Paul Reveres capture
    1. Situation: British capture and interogate Paul Revere.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:Observation.
      2. Principles of War: Security, Suprise.
      3. Leadership:
        Examine how Revere's capture effect the actions of the Marines at Lexington Green.
  6. Position 6: Parker's Revenge
    1. Situation: After Bloody Angle the mauled British troops ran into another flanking unit which crushed the commanders remaining control.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Observation
        Cover and Concealment
        Obstacles
        Key Terrain
        Avenues of Approach
      2. Principles of War:
        Offensive
        Suprise
        Simplicity
        Security
        Unity of Command
      3. Leadership:
        Examine the placement of the Lexington Militia. Examine the consequences of the casualties inflicted at this site. Examine Pitcairn's actions at this site.
  7. Position 7: The Bluff
    1. Situation: British Marines secure the Bluff and Pitcairn removes the column from enemy fire.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Key Terrain
        Avenues of Approach
      2. Principles of War:
        Security
        Unity of Command
      3. Leadership:
        Examine the consequences for both sides of Pitcairns decision to collect his troops.
  8. Position 8: Fiskes Hill
    1. Situation: The British column recieves fire, and break rank in full retreat to Lexington.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Avenues of Approach
        Cover and Concealment
        Key Terrain.
      2. Principles of War: Offensive
        Security
        Suprise
        Unity of Command
        Offense
      3. Leadership:
        Examine what the effect the casualties here had on moral and command. Examine the difference in combat here than previous engagements.
  9. Position 9: Lexington Green
    1. Situation: Show of Resistance to The British. The Lexington Militia numbering 75 stood at arms as 650-900 British approached.
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Avenues of Approach
        Obstacles.
      2. Principles of War:
        Unity of Command
      3. Leadership:
        Examine Parkers decision to stand his ground. Examine also the faults in Adair's avenue of approach.
  10. Position 10: Percy's Relief Column at Lexington
    1. Situation: Percy's Column Gathers at Lexington and Scatters Rebels With Cannons
    2. Teaching Points:
      1. O.C.O.K.A.:
        Avenues of Approach
        Observation.
      2. Principles of War:
        Security
        Mass
        Economy of Force
      3. Leadership:
        Examine Percy's decision to stay in Lexington.

This essentially ends the staff ride. The terrain integrity of the next phase of the battle is so far removed from 1775 that the it is of no use for a staff ride.

Historical References & Support

Lexington Concord Staff Ride

 
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