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Pageant Exhibition Panel 23 - Lafayette's coach arrives
TitlePageant Exhibition Panel 23 - Lafayette's coach arrives
Full Size Image
SubjectLafayette, Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert Du Motier, marquis de, 1757-1834--Travel--United States--Massachusetts; Lancaster (Mass.)--History--Drama; Fourth of July celebrations--Massachusetts--Lancaster; Library exhibits--Massachusetts--Lancaster; Horse-drawn vehicles--Pictorial works
DescriptionThe arrival of Marquis de la Lafayette, the French General who served in the American Revolutionary War, coach during Episode V, The Reception of Lafayette, in the Lancaster, Massachusetts 1912 Fourth of July Pageant. The arrival was early in the day, a little after six o'clock. The town folk gather around to watch Lafayette's arrival. In 1824 General Lafayette was invited by President Monroe to revisit the United States as the guest of the nation. For thirteen months he visited nearly every town in the United States. He arrived at Lancaster on September 2, 1824 at half past six in the morning. The photograph is mounted on heavy cardboard and has text describing the activity and history depicted in the photograph. The text for this image has been transcribed.
TranscriptionPageant at Lancaster, Massachusetts, July 4, 1912 RECEPTION TO LAFAYETTE, 1824 IN 1824 General Lafayette was invited by President Monroe to revisit the United States as the guest of the nation. He arrived at New York August 15, accompanied by his son George and his secretary M. Levasseur. During the following thirteen months he was received in nearly every town in the United States. "The whole of this long journey, " says Bayard Tuckerman, "was a triumphal progress. Cities and towns vied with each other in the length of their processions, the brilliancy of their balls and public dinners; through the rural districts the population lined the road along which the general passed under arches surmounted with 'Welcome Lafayette!" At every stopping-place an orator expressed the feelings of his neighbours in language heartfelt, if florid, every surviving Revolutionary soldier became the great man of his community. The festivities and celebrations of that year had no precedent in the annals of the country." Lafayette's welcome at Lancaster was a typical incident of this "triumphal progress." September 2, 1824, he set out with his party from Boston, spending the night in Bolton at the mansion of S.V.S. Wilder, with whom he had become acquainted during Mr. Wilder's long career as a merchant in France. The Bolton Rifle Company, "in their new green uniform, " maintained a guard of honor through the night about the house, and the next morning escorted the illustrious quest, accompanied by Mr. Wilder, to Lancaster. On the way they were joined by other military companies. The incidents of Lafayette's reception took place on the village green, as here shown. The ladies of Lancaster with their husbands and veterans of the war now enter, and a townsman enters on horseback with the news that the coach, with outriders, is already in the village street, and the final preparations are hastily made, and the chairman helped up into his saddle. The coach arrives, followed by the Bolton Rifles. Lafayette dismounts with Mr. and Mrs. Wilder and his son, George Washington Lafayette. Many of the townsfolk are introduced, and Lafayette shows special pleasure at meeting veterans of the revolution. 'At the early hour of half-past six, Lafayette, escorted by a company of cavalry proceeded to the Lancaster line. The turnpike gate was covered with flowers and evergreen, and bore a legend, "The Free welcome the Brave." here a salute was fired by the artillery. Nearly opposite the meeting-house an arch had been erected and elaborately decorated. The verse was composed by Caroline Lee Whiting, later well known as an author under her married name of Caroline Lee Hentz.
CreatorSears, Richard
ContributorsThayer Memorial Library
TypeImage, Text
SourceImage is the twenty-third photograph in the Lancaster Massachusetts 1912 Fourth of July Pageant Exhibition created by the Thayer Memorial Library.
RelationFrom the archives at the Thayer Memorial Library, Lancaster, Massachusetts.
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