A Map and description of The Battle of Bunker Hill.
A School Project by Aaron D. and Justin S. -
This battle was one of the earliest in the American Revolution. The battle's
name is a misnomer because the major part of the engagement was actually
fought on Breed's Hill nearby. The place for this battle was in Charlestown,
Massachusetts across the Charles River from Boston.
The British commanders for this engagement were General Thomas Gage and
General Sir William Howe. These two generals were highly skilled in leading
legions of British troops in battle. The Americans commanders were Colonel
William Prescott, General Israel Putnam and Joseph Warren. These generals
were fairly skilled in combat.
Here is the account of Bunker Hill. On June 16, 1775 ( at night ) more
than 1,000 patriots (rebel fighters), under the command of General Prescott,
marched to Breed's Hill over the Charlestown neck and fortified it with
trenches, bales of cotton and hay by the morning of June 17. After they
were done with this, General Israel Putnam took some men and began to fortify
Meanwhile in the town of Boston, the British Commander, General Gage just
happened to see the Americans occupying the two hills...he ordered the
British ships to start bombarding the Americans positions until the British
troops could arrive. Soon after the order the British started moving troops
to the east of Breed's hill from Boston.
Col. Prescott's men would be the first attacked. This was the first charge
with British army on the east side of the hill with the secondary doing
a straight attack. General Howe's men lead the attack with 5,000 troops
up the hill. But they were not alone, they were covered by cannon from
British ships in the river. While this was going on, some of the British
ships loaded their cannons with incendiary shells and annihilated Charlestown,
where a fraction of American troops were sniping at British soldiers on
the battlefield. The first attack failed. The British retreated.
They went up the hill again but with the main group attacking forward and
the secondary going east...of course this attempt also failed. The British
were thoroughly enraged and took off their heavy packs before charging
the third time. The Americans were running low on ammunition and gunpowder,
so they had to retreat through Charlestown neck. And the British got
The losses were astounding for the British with more than 1,000 men lost,
wounded or prisoners. The Americans only lost about 400 or less. By the
military tradition of the time, the British won because at the end of the
battle they had posession of the field. The casualties however, tell a
different story. This attack was immortalized forever in American history.
First, because it was the first serious defeat for the British and secondly
due to a famous quote attributed to one of the American commanders. To
preserve the American's gunpowder, he ordered the patriots, "Don't fire
until you see the whites of their eyes!"