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Lafayette returns to Sturbridge

Lafayette returns to Sturbridge

Tuesday, September 3, 2024


Lafayette is returning to Sturbridge on September 3, 2024!

The American Friends of Lafayette is sponsoring the bicentennial commemoration of Lafayette’s Farewell Tour of 1824-25. The thirteen-month celebration of General Lafayette’s triumphant return to the United States will begin in New York City and follow his footsteps through the then existing 24 states in the exact order he traveled during his tour. The Sturbridge Historical Society and Old Sturbridge Village are partnering with the AFL to recreate his visit to the Sturbridge Common, which took place on September 3, 1824. We will keep you updated on this celebration as the planning continues. For more information about the 1824-25 tour check out this website: The Lafayette Tour.

About Lafayette’s Tour and visit to Sturbridge

When America declared its independence on July 4, 1776, the thirteen colonies were pulled into a conflict with one of the world’s most formidable powers, Great Britain. The colonies’ actions against Great Britain inspired a young French aristocrat and military officer, Marquis de Lafayette, to depart his native France to fight in the American Revolution. Lafayette served as a commander with the Continental Army throughout the war and helped secure French support for the American cause. This support played an integral part in securing American victory during the war.


Celebrated as a hero in the U.S and France, Lafayette eventually returned to his home country.


In 1824, Marquis de Lafayette was invited to visit the United States for the first time in 41 years. As an American hero and one of the only surviving commanders from the Revolution, Lafayette’s visit to the U.S. was highly anticipated and met with a great deal of enthusiasm and excitement. Lafayette’s Tour extended from 1824 to 1825. During this time, he visited Washington, D.C., as well as major cities and small communities across 24 states.


On September 3, 1824, General Lafayette met with veterans and citizens in a procession to the Common and Porter’s stage house. The admiration engendered by the surviving veterans was recounted in the September 15, 1824 edition of the Massachusetts Spy:


“Near the middle of the procession, and within the lines, were arranged a large company of revolutionary officers and soldiers, some of whom had served under LaFayette. To each one the General was introduced. The scene was touching. As they grasped the hand of the venerable Hero, in a number of instances the tear was seen to roll down the furrowed cheek of the veteran soldier.”


Following the brief visit, Lafayette continued his tour to Hartford, Connecticut.

Sturbridge Town Common
277 Main Street Route 131
Sturbridge, MA 01566 United States
Tuesday, September 3, 2024
Details are coming soon!
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