CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Monday is Patriots’ Day, a state holiday, but why do we celebrate the third Monday in April?
Its origins go back to the Revolutionary War. You may remember the poem from Longfellow that begins:
“Listen, my children, and you shall hear
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
On the 18th of April in ’75,
hardly a man is now alive,
who remembers that famous day and year.”
The next day, the Battles Of Lexington and Concord took place, the first battles of the American Revolution in 1775.
In 1894, the Lexington Historical Society petitioned the Massachusetts State Legislature to proclaim April 19th as “Lexington Day.” Concord countered with “Concord Day.”
And it was Governor Frederic T. Greenhalge who decided on the compromise and called it Patriots’ Day.
Since 1969, it has been observed on the third Monday in April. We also consider this to be Marathon Monday and since the Boston Marathon has been run on every Patriots’ Day since 1897.
Except this year of course because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Marathon has been postponed until September.
The Red Sox also traditionally play a home game that starts at 11 in the morning on Patriots’ Day. A tradition we hope to resume next year.