The Virginia Gazette

Today in the 1770s: February 22

WILLIAMSBURG, February 26, 1779.
ON Monday the 22 instant a very elegant entertainment was given at the Raleigh tavern by the inhabitants of this city, to celebrate the anniversary of that day which gave birth to GENERAL GEORGE WASHINGTON, Commander in Chief of the armies of the United States, the saviour of his country, and the brave asserter of the rights and liberties of mankind.

Virginia Gazette (Dixon & Nicolson) February 26, 1779
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This party turned into a riotous affair according to David Meade Randolph, a student at William and Mary. The party planners borrowed two cannons to discharge in honor of General Washington outside the Raleigh. Captain Digges didn't approve of this use of artillery and brought soldiers to retrieve the cannons. Meanwhile Colonel Innes defended the cannons by threatening Digges with his cane. Digges responded that if the pieces were not surrendered he would fire upon the party. Luckily, the men did not harm each other, but the next day Colonel Innes was brought before the court and charged with rioting by Captain Digges. The case was dismissed.

Sources: W&M Q, v21, p134-136.

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