History often produces an often inexact record and the Boston Tea Party is an excellent example. Unlike the Declaration of Independence, which had signers, the Boston Tea Party was veiled in secrecy. In fact it was not called the "Tea Party," until many years later. It was called "Destruction of the Tea in Boston Harbor."1 Participants swore themselves to secrecy and some did not acknowledge each other even when boarding the ships, breaking open the chests and dumping the tea. Some never talked about it except among close family members. Lists were produced, but were incomplete. So today, 225 years later, we have those incomplete lists, family oral tradition, and few artifacts to trace participation (several artificacts are to be displayed at Old South Meeting House, Boston).
Even years later, some retained secrecy for fear of lawsuits possibly being brought by the British East India Company. Also, some of the participants' families had become well to do and were not proud of identifying with "civil disobedience," even though it was the most significant act leading to our nation's break with Great Britain. Some 29 individuals thought to be in the Tea Party are buried in Copp's Hill Burying Ground. Either we know definitely or it is highly likely they are buried there.
This list of 175 names was compiled from Boston Tea Party Chapter, Daughters of American Revolution; from the 1973 Boston Globe 200th Anniversary Boston Tea Party Special Section; and the book, Tea Leaves, published in 1884 in Boston by Francis S. Drake
In the book, Bold Face indicates the individuals either known to be or probably buried in Copp's Hill Burying Ground. Rank after name indicates Revolutionary War Service. The number which follows is the page number in the Whitemore Book in Section B. Age is age when in Tea Party; MCMA indicates member of Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Assn, Boston artisans and tradesmen of that day; Mason indicates membership in a Lodge of Freemasons; and then death date if available.
- A -
Francis Akeley (Eckley), only person imprisoned for Tea Party.
- B -
Nathaniel Barber (Major) Tomb, 28 Old Burial Ground (xiv), early revolutionary and soldier, Mason, died 1787.
Samuel Barnard (Maj.), died 1782.
Henry Bass, early revolutionary, died 1813.
Joseph Bassett (Cpt.), Tomb 65 (xv).
Adam Beals Jr.
Thomas Bolter (Cpt.), 38, died 1811.
Thomas was born in 1735 and died in 1811. He worked as a fireman, a housewright and a retailer. After the Tea Party, he removed his family to Northampton and enlisted in Major Joseph Eayer's company, Colonel Flower's regiment of artillery artificers -presumably at the Springfield Armory,with the rank of captain. He was listed in the 1790 Boston (Suffolk Co.)census, his address was given as Common Street which I believe was adjacent to the Haymarket Theater. Thomas and his wife Mary (Goddard) are buried in tomb 41 (old no.1) Central Burying Ground, Boston Common. [Data Submitted by Researcher Ron Boulter]
David Bradlee (Cpt.), 31, died 1811.
Josiah Bradlee, 19, died 1798.
Nathaniel Bradlee, 27, MCMA, died 1813.
Thomas Bradlee, 29, MCMA, Mason, died 1805.
James Brewer (Cpt.), possibly Tomb 22 Old Ground, MCMA, Mason, died 1805.
John Brown (Cpt.), entry 1718, 27, died 1782.
Seth Ingersoll Browne, 23, Bunker Hill, died 1809
Stephen Bruce, 356, Mason, died 1801.
Benjamin Burton (Maj.), 24, died 1835.
- C -
Nicholas Campbell, 41, died 1929.
Thomas Chase, early revolutionary, Mason.
Benjamin Clark, Tomb 104, xvi, MCMA, died 1840, three sons may have been in Tea Party also.
Jonathan Clark (Sgt.), possibly Tomb 77 (Dana & Clark) xv.
John Cochran, 24, died 1839.
Gilbert Colesworthy, 29, died 1818.
Gersham Collier, Mason, died 1825.
Adam Collson, 35, early revolutionary, Mason, died 1798.
James Foster Condy, died 1809.
Samuel Cooper (LT), 18, died 1840.
Thomas Crafts (Col.), 33, early revolutionary, died 1799.
John Crane (Brig. Gen.), 29, early revolutionary, Mason, died 1805.
- D -
Thomas Dana, Jr. possibly Tomb 77 (Dana & Clark).
Robert Davis (Maj.), 26, early revolutionary, Mason, died 1798.
Edward Dolbeare, died 1796.
John Dyar, Jr.
- E -
Joseph Eaton (Cpt.)
Eckley (see Francis Akeley)
Benjamin Edes, possibly 482, 41, early revolutionary, died 1803.
- F -
Samuel Fenno, died 1806.
Samuel Foster (Capt.), died 1778.
Thomas Fracker, Entry 884 (Charter St tombs), died 1806.
Nathaniel Frothingham, Jr. (LT.),Entry 1738, Tomb 27 (Thomas Frothingham and others) Also possible 1837, Tomb 56; 27, died 1825.
John Fulton, 40.
- G -
John Gammell, revolutionary war soldier, died 1827.
Eleazer Gay, possibly 1733 (Ebenezer Gay Tomb 21, 1819)
Samuel Gore, probably Tomb 112 (1810) with brother Gov. Christopher Gore; 22, MCMA, Mason, died 1831.
Moses Grant, entry 1030, 30, MCMA, died 1817.
Nathaniel Greene, early revolutionary, MCMA.
- H -
Samuel Hammond, 24, died 1842.
William Hendley, 25, Mason, died 1830.
George Robert Twelves Hewes, 31, shoemaker, left diary of Tea Party, died 1840.
John Hicks, 48, killed at Arlington by British retreating from Lexington-Concord, died April 19, 1775.
Buried without shroud or ceremony in the Old Burying Ground, Their bodies were later moved to where a monument in their honor now stands. The inscription on the monument reads:
Erected by the City A.D. 1870
to the memory of
James Wyman Janson
buried in Menotomy
Men of Cambridge who fell in defiance
of the Liberty of the People
O, what a glorious morning
Samuel Hobbs, 23, died 1823.
John Hooton (Sgt.), possibly Tomb 15--Hooten & Watts Family Tomb (13). Evidence indicates the body may have been moved to Mt. Auburn, Cambridge.
Elijah Houghton - Lancaster, Mass.
Samuel Howard (born Hayward), Tomb 120 Old Ground, 21, died 1797.
Edward Compton Howe, 31, died 1821.
Jonathan Hunnewell, possibly Copp's Hill , 14, 1st president MCMA, died 1842.
Richard Hunnewell, probably Copp's Hill Tomb 36, Mason, MCMA, died 1805.
Richard Hunnewell, Jr., possibly Copp's Hill, 16.
Thomas Hunstable, 20, Mason.
Abraham Hunt (Col.), 25, Valley Forge, died 1793.
- I -
Daniel Ingersoll, 23, Mason, died 1829.
- J -
Robert Jameson (Cpt.)
David Kinnison [WEBMASTER NOTE: There may possibly have been "a" man by the name of David Kinnison who participated in the Boston Tea Party - though almost assuredly NOT the same David Kinnison who died in Chicago in 1852. That David Kinnison has been exposed in modern times as a hoaxer.]
- L -
Robert Lash, probably because wife Johanna buried here (1114).
Joseph Lee (Cpt.), 28, Mason, died 1831.
Nathaniel Lee (Cpt.)
Amos Lincoln (Lt. Col.), Tomb 7 (1805) Old Burial Ground (697), 20, Bunker Hill, married 2 daughters of Paul Revere, MCMA, Mason, died 1829.
John Locke (Sgt.)
Matthew Loring, possibly Tomb 88; Loring Family Tomb, 1806; 23, died 1829.
Joseph Lovering, 15, MCMA, died 1848.
Joseph Ludden (Sgt.)
- M -
Thomas Machin (Cpt.), 29, Bunker Hill, Mason, died 1816.
Ebenezer MacIntosh, 36, early revolutionary, died 1812.
Archibald MacNeil, 23, died 1840.
John Marston (Bombadier), J. B. Marston Tomb, 1810,131)
Martin, probably Wm. P., MCMA.
Thompson Maxwell (LT.), 31, Concord, Bunker Hill, died 1835.
John May (Col.), 25, died 1812.
Mead, probably John, probably Copp's Hill Tomb 22 New Ground, MCMA.
Thomas Melville (Maj.), 22, early revolutionary, Mason, MCMA, died 1832.
Aaron John Miller (Dr.)
William Molineaux, 57, early revolutionary, died 1774.
Thomas Moore, 20, died 1813.
Anthony Morse (LT.)
Joseph Mountfort (LT.), 23, MCMA, died 1838.
- N -
Eliphalet Newell, 38, artillery officer, Mason.
Joseph Nicholls (Cpt.)
- P -
Joseph Pearse Palmer (Major), Mason, died 1788.
Jonathan Parker of Roxbury, Mass.
Joseph Payson, 30.
Samuel Peck, early revolutionary, Mason.
John Peters, 41, Lexington, Bunker Hill, died 1832.
William Pierce, 29, barber, MCMA, died 1840.
Isaac Pitman (Cpt.)
Lendall Pitts, 26, early revolutionary, MCMA, died 1787.
Samuel Pitts, 28, also early revolutionary.
Thomas Porter, died 1800.
Henry Prentiss (Cpt.), 24, MCMA, Mason, died 1821.
Nathaniel Prentiss, probably 1626 (N. S. Prentiss).
Rev. John Prince, 22, Mason, died 1836,later said he was a witness and not a Tea Party participant.
Edward Procter (Col.), 40, early revolutionary, Mason, died 1811.
Henry Purkitt (Col.), 18, MCMA, Mason, died 1846.
- R -
Joseph Reed (Cpt.)
Paul Revere (Col.), 38, early revolutionary, MCMA founder, Mason, died 1818.
Benjamin Rice (Cpt.)
Jonathan Dorby Robins
John Russell, MCMA, Mason, died 1778.
William Russell (Sgt.-Maj.), 25, Mason, died 1784.
- S -
Edmund Sears (Cpt.)
Robert Sessions (LT.), 21, died 1836.
Joseph Shed, 41, died 1812.
Benjamin Simpson, soldier, died 1849.
Peter Slater, Jr. (Cpt.), 14, died 1831.
Josiah Snelling, Tomb 31 (1803)(xiv,1681), MCMA, died 1873.
Thomas Spear, died 1789.
Samuel Sprague (Sgt.),19, MCMA, died 1844.
John Spurr (Maj.), 25, died 1822.
James Starr, 32, died 1831.
Phineas Stearns (Cpt.), 32, Lexington, Dorchester Hts., died 1798 in Dorchester Heights when the British evacutated Boston. He died in 1798
Ebeneezer Stevens (Gen.), 22, Revolution + War of 1812, died 1823.
Elisha Story (Dr.), 30, Lexington, Bunker Hill, died 1805.
James Swan (Col.), 19, Bunker Hill, Mason, died 1831.
- T -
Abraham Tower (Sgt.)
Bartholomew Trow (Cpt.)
John Truman, xvi, Tomb 118 Old Ground.
Benjamin Tucker Jr.
- U -
Thomas Urann (Cpt.), Mason, died 1791.
- W -
James Watson (Cpt.)
Henry Wells (Cpt.), Mason.
Thomas Wells, probably Tomb 18, 26, Tea Party evidence at Old South Meeting House, died 1810.
Josiah Wheeler (Cpt.), 30, Dorchester Hts., died 1817.
John Whitehead (LT.)
Thomas Williams (Sgt.), 19, Lexington, died 1817.
Nathaniel Willis, 18, MCMA, died 1831.
Joshua Wyeth, 16, Revolutionary soldier, died after 1827.
- Y -
Thomas Young (Dr.), 41, early revolutionary, Army svc., died 1777. Was one of the Boston Tea Party and a Captain of a company
NOTE: Introductory information was taken from discussions 2 October, 1998, with Albert F. Young of Oak Park, IL, senior research fellow at The Newberry Library, Chicago, and author of the upcoming books, The Shoemaker and the Tea Party and Masquerade: The Adventures of Deborah Sampson Gannett in the American Revolution.
Transcribed by Janice Farnsworth
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