“The Bloody Massacre perpetrated in King-Street, Boston, on March 5th, 1770 by a party of the 29th Regiment.” allegedly drawing “first blood” in the American Revolution
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c. 1770s, 29th Regiment Pre Revolutionary War Era, Enlisted Soldier’s Pewter Coat Button, Troiani B29.h, Lacking Shank, Sharply Detailed Very Fine.
This historic British 29th Regiment Pewter Coat Button measures about 1” in diameter, remains in superior quality with sharp eye appeal. The consignor states be has not altered this rare button and he coated in a mix of Elmer's glue and water to keep it from deteriorating or chipping which gives it a high glossy appearance (able to be removed with warm water if desired). The button is the standard pewter 29th Regiment button with a plain face and large high relief Arabic numeral “29” as seen in numerous collectors books, listed a Troiani B29.h as illustrated on page 41 of his reference book, pattern dating circa 1771-1773 (so also possibly 1770). This example has on small edge chip at 7:00 and is otherwise whole and intact in excellent detailed condition, as shown. Overall, an excellent button for display.
Together with the 14th Regiment of Foot, the 29th Regiment was posted to Boston in 1768.
On March 5th 1770, members of the Grenadier company under Captain Thomas Preston were involved in the Boston Massacre, when five colonists died during a riot in front of the Boston customs house, as made famous in the Engraved print by Paul Revere titled; The Bloody Massacre perpetrated in King-Street, Boston, on March 5th, 1770 by a party of the 29th Regiment.”
The 29th was later dubbed the Vein Openers, for allegedly drawing “first blood” in the American Revolution.
Those involved were tried for murder, defended by John Adams, a future President of the United States; two soldiers, Hugh Montgomery and Matthew Kilroy were found guilty of manslaughter and branded on the thumb. Preston and the others were found not guilty and following the trial, the regiment moved to British-controlled Florida in 1771, then to England in 1773.
The 1770 Boston Massacre; the 29th was dubbed 'The Vein Openers' for their involvement
During the American Revolutionary War in 1775, the Americans tried to capture Quebec City; they were forced to retreat but the 29th arrived in Quebec in June 1776 to reinforce British forces in what is now modern Canada.
The Light and Grenadier companies were detached to join the 1777 Saratoga campaign, and fought at the Battle of Hubbardton on July 7th under Brigadier Simon Fraser. Following defeat in the Battles of Saratoga, these companies surrendered with the rest of Burgoyne's force in October 1777. The other eight remained in Canada, fighting in a number of raids and small battles along the Vermont and New York state frontiers