Return to Content

The Pitcairn-Putnam Pistols

by in Jul 2007
The Pitcairn-Putnam Pistols
0 votes, 0.00 avg. rating (0% score)
Print Friendly

In 1879, the granddaughter-in-law of Revolutionary War hero Major General Israel Putnam (1718-1790) donated “these memorials of the opening scene of the Revolutionary Drama” to Lexington.

Now displayed in the Hancock-Clarke House of the Lexington Historical Society, these elite Scottish officer’s pistols originally belonged to Major John Pitcairn (1722-1775), a Scot who commanded the advance British force that marched into Lexington in April 1775. On the retreat from Concord back to Boston, he lost his horse with the saddlebags containing these pistols. They were captured and soon after presented to General Putnam.

These foliate-engraved, ram’s-head-butted pistols bear Pitcairn’s monogram or initials amid the scrollwork and are a type favored by Scottish Highland officers during the mid-18th century. They are among the most storied artifacts of the American Revolution.

Lexington Historical Society, 13 Depot Sq., Lexington, MA. 781-862-1703;

Please Note: This information was accurate at the time of publication. When planning a trip, please confirm details by directly contacting any company or establishment you intend to visit.

Give the Gift of Yankee Magazine and get a Gift in Return!

Send a one-year gift subscription of Yankee Magazine for only $17.99 a 50% savings. In return we will send you a free 2016 Scenes of New England Calendar (a $9.95 value)!


No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

We reserve the right to remove or edit comments that are offensive or disrespectful to our readers and/or writers, cannot be verified, lack clarity, or contain profanity. Your comments may be republished by Yankee Magazine across multiple platforms.

Register Sign In

©2015, Yankee Publishing Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Yankee Publishing Inc., | P.O. Box 520, Dublin, NH 03444 | (603) 563-8111

< Prev

Helen’s Helpful Hints

If dining on deck, especially with kids, avoid snacks that will blow away or are ...

Related Articles

Next >