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First Martyr of Liberty – Crispus Attucks in American Memory - Oxford Scholarship Online
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First Martyr of Liberty: Crispus Attucks in American Memory

Mitch Kachun


First Martyr of Liberty explores how Crispus Attucks’s death in the 1770 Boston Massacre led to his achieving mythic significance in African Americans’ struggle to incorporate their experiences and heroes into the mainstream of the American historical narrative. While the other victims of the massacre have been largely ignored, Attucks is widely celebrated as the first to die in the cause of freedom during the era of the American Revolution. He became a symbolic embodiment of black patriotism and citizenship. This book traces Attucks’s career through both history and myth to understand how his ... More

Keywords: Crispus Attucks, memory, African Americans, American Revolution, historical narratives, mainstream, history, patriotism, heroes, myths, Boston Massacre

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2017 Print ISBN-13: 9780199731619
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2017 DOI:10.1093/oso/9780199731619.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Mitch Kachun, author
Professor of History, Western Michigan University