Today in Military History: Feb. 13, 1776, Patrick Henry

Patrick Henry by George Bagby Matthews Oil on canvas, 1891 ca.

On February 13, 1776,  American Patriot, Patrick Henry becomes colonel of the First Virginia battalion in defense of the state’s supply of gunpowder, but resigned his post after six months to focus on statesmanship. 

Henry is the statesman who famously said in a speech at the Virginia Convention in March of 1775, “give me liberty or give me death!”

“Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? … Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death!”

Click here for the entire speech.