March 17th may mean Saint Patrick’s Day to most of you. Here in Boston it’s Evacuation Day.
The holiday commemorates the evacuation of British forces from the city of Boston following the Siege of Boston, early in the American Revolutionary War. (It’s just a coincidence that it coincides with Saint Patrick’s Day.)
George Washington fortified Dorchester Heights in early March 1776 with cannons. Major General Henry Knox had captured the cannons from Fort Ticonderoga. The garrison and navy under the command of British General William Howe were threatened by these cannon positions. Howe had to decide between attack and retreat. Howe chose to retreat and withdrew from Boston and sailed off to Nova Scotia on March 17.
George Washington had his first victory of the Revolutionary war.