General George Washington took command of the troops surrounding British-occupied Boston on July 3, 1775, urgently needing powder and other supplies. Early in March 1776, using cannon brought overland from Fort Ticonderoga in New York by Henry Knox, Washington occupied Dorchester Heights, effectively commanding the city and forcing the British to evacuate on March 17, 1776.
The route that Henry Knox took with the cannon for General Washington roughly followed the Old Boston Post Road through what is now North Wilbraham. The transportation of the cannon by oxen was very difficult over the muddy and snowy terrain, but Knox persevered and enabled one of the first major victories of the Revolutionary War.
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