Colonial women didn’t usually fight in the Revolutionary War, but many of them tried to do their part. Sybil Ludington was only sixteen years old when her turn came.
- A messenger arrived on horseback at the home of Colonel Henry Ludington on the night of April 26, 1777. He relayed a message that the British were planning to attack Danbury, Connecticut the next day.
- The colonel wasn’t available to help. Instead, his daughter, Sybil, traveled through the night on her horse to alert her father’s troops. Most of the soldiers were farmers and they had disbanded to go home and plant spring crops.
- Sybil rode between 20 and 40 miles through rain and dark woods.
- She was able to gather several hundred soldiers.
- The soldiers were late in getting to Danbury. The British burned the city, but they met with a fierce fight as they were leaving.
- Sybil was the oldest of twelve children. Her father was a farmer and a military man.
- A few years later, Sybil married and moved to the Catskills in New York. After her husband died, she purchased a tavern and raised her son by herself.
- As an old woman, Sybil applied for a military widow’s pension, but was denied. She died in poverty. In 1975, the U.S. Postal Service honored her with her own stamp. There is a statue of her in Carmel, New York.
- Disband: separate
- Deny: refuse
Questions and Answers
Question: Was Sybil’s journey dangerous?
Answer: Yes, especially for a woman. The night of her adventure was dark, cold, and rainy. She rode on rough country roads and trails. At that time, bandits were often about at night. Some records show that Sybil beat one of these bandits off with a stick when he tried to attack her.
Watch a video about Sybil.
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Declan, Tobin. " Facts about Sybil Ludington during the Revolutionary War ." American History for Kids, Nov 2020. Web. 30 Nov 2020. < https://www.americanhistoryforkids.com/sybil-ludington/ >.
APA Style Citation
Tobin, Declan. (2020). Facts about Sybil Ludington during the Revolutionary War. American History for Kids. Retrieved from https://www.americanhistoryforkids.com/sybil-ludington/