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State of New York State History

Lafayette in New England Bicentennial: His Second Trip

Lafayette portrait by Ary Scheffer in House of Representatives (1825)

Lafayette made two trips to New England during his 1824-1825 visit. In a previous blog, The Lafayette 1824-1825 Bicentennial: Are You Ready?, I presented the 1824 visit. In this blog, I provide the stops on his 1825 visit. As you see, the 200th anniversary of Lafayette’s visit in 2025 coincides with the 250th anniversary of the American Revolution. So, for example, he was at Bunker Hill for the 50th anniversary of the battle which now will be the 250th anniversary. It will be necessary for locations to keep in mind these potentially overlapping dates.

As I mentioned in the previous blog, I am working with two French/Lafayette organizations: American Friends of Lafayette and the American Society of Le Souvenir Français. This list was provided to me by the American Friends of Lafayette. Julien Icher is a member of that organization as well as the founder of The Lafayette Trail, a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that “aims to educate the public about the national significance of Lafayette’s Tour and to promote a broader understanding of Lafayette’s numerous contributions to American independence and national coherence in preparation for the 2024-2025 tour bicentennial celebrations.” Readers of this blog may already have or be working with The Lafayette Trail to erect markers at their locations in recognition of his visit to their site.

In Lafayette’s 1824 trip, he left New York and followed the Boston Post Road to Boston and the interior of New England. In his 1825 trip, he was traveling across New York from Niagara Falls along the Erie Canal (I-90 and Route 20 today) into Massachusetts and then northern New England. He ends fittingly at Lake Champlain where he boards one of those new steamboats, an invention that was revolutionizing tourism.

For more information about Lafayette’s visit to New England, go to the New England Historical Society website:

Lafayette Returns To America

When the Marquis de Lafayette returned to America for an extended tour of the 50-year-old Republic, he was no longer the slim young nobleman in a powdered wig.

At 66 years old, he had cropped his still-dark hair in the fashion of the day. He had acquired gravitas during his political career in France. Lafayette survived  the tumultuous years of the revolution and its aftermath, which for him included a five-year prison term.

I wonder how many streets and towns were named after him as a result of this visit just in your state yet alone the entire country of 24 states that existed then, all of which he went to.

Here in New York, I have contacted the New York State Historian about including Lafayette-related events on the state website for the American Revolution 250th events. He has agreed to include them. The situation may vary from state to state. I also hope to have my own County legislature designate the August 20, 2024 as Lafayette bicentennial day in the County with all the municipalities he visited that day participating.

If there are history/museum conferences in 2022, it may be appropriate to have a Lafayette session. Since any such conferences are likely to be virtual based on the present situation, it will not be possible to have a table or booth with Lafayette materials including how to get a Lafayette history marker if you do not already have one. Everything will have to be done online for now.

1825 June 13 Pittsfield MA Joseph Merrick’s Coffee House
1825 June 13 Dalton MA Nelson’s Coffee House
1825 June 13 Worthington MA
1825 June 14 Northampton MA Warner’s Hotel & Meetinghouse
1825 June 15 Worcester MA Exchange Hotel
1825 June 16 Boston MA Reception by Mrs. Quincy
1825 June 17 Charlestown MA Bunker Hill Monument Ceremony – Webster’s Address – Masonic Procession – Party at Mrs. Webster’s on Summer Street
1825 June 18 Quincy MA John Adams’s House
1825 June 19 Cambridge MA Divine Service on Brattle Street
1825 June 20 Boston MA Banquet at the Mechanics Association
1825 June 21 Reading MA Skinner’s Tavern, Barnard’s Hotel
1825 June 21 Andover MA Theological Institution, Taylor’s Hotel
1825 June 21 Methuen MA Josiah Quincy’s goodbye
1825 June 21 Salem NH Londonderry Turnpike
1825 June 21 Derry NH Derby’s House / Adams Female Academy / Redfield’s Tavern
1825 June 21 Pembroke NH Fisk Tavern
1825 June 22 Concord NH New Hampshire State House
1825 June 23 Northwood NH Piper’s Tavern
1825 June 24 Wells ME Wells, Maine
1825 June 24 Kennebunk ME Storer Mansion
1825 June 25 Biddeford ME Seth Spring’s Tavern
1825 June 26 Portland ME Maine Historical Society
1825 June 27 Hopkinton NH Hopkinton Common
1825 June 27 Warner NH Meetinghouse
1825 June 27 Bradford NH Address by Dr. Tappan – Unknown
1825 June 27 Newport NH Cheney’s house – J. Breck House, Common
1825 June 27 Claremont NH Opera House Square
1825 June 28 Cornish NH Cornish Bridge
1825 June 28 Windsor VT Tremont House
1825 June 28 Royalton VT Royalton Common / Bridge St
1825 June 28 Montpelier VT Vermont State House
1825 June 28 Woodstock VT Colonel Cutting’s Hall / meetinghouse / Barker’s Hotel
1825 June 29 Lake Champlain VT/NY Aboard the Phoenix steamboat

2 thoughts on “Lafayette in New England Bicentennial: His Second Trip

  1. Hey, Peter.

    Given your recent stories about the Lafayette visit, I thought you might appreciate this short piece that I wrote for a local paper in 2011. Not sure what to do with it, but I bet there are loads of stories like this one.

    Enjoy!

    Cliff McCarthy
    Belchertown, Hampshire Co., Mass.

    1. Cliff, I see from the research you did about where Lafayette was the night before and the night after, that the odds are overwhelming that he had to pass through Belchertown. For example, on the Boston Post Road on August 20, 1824, which I wrote about in my opening blog, I did not mention his stop at St. Paul’s Church in what is now Mount Vernon. He had to have passed it on his way from New York to Connecticut and sure enough the Church has a record of his stop there at the cemetery to pay his respects. I am sure there are many places he passed through that are not on the itinerary. That is why the bicentennial is a great opportunity to bring these stories to attention.

      Peter

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