A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.


William Dawes

6 April 1745 - 25 February 1799

William Dawes was born in Boston to William and Lydia Dawes. Along with Paul Revere, Dawes was chosen by Joseph Warren to warn the countryside and alert John Hancock and Samuel Adams that the British troops were marching to Lexington and Concord on the evening of 18 April 1775. While Revere was sent from Boston across the Charles River, Dawes was sent over Boston Neck to better assure the success of the alert. Dawes later joined the Continental Army and was appointed a commissary by Congress. After the war, Dawes continued in the grocery business in Boston.