Danbury Raid gallery talk

The Wilton Historical Society has arranged a free guided tour of The Danbury Raid exhibition, on view at the Westport Historical Society, on Saturday, May 27. From 10 to 11, guest curator and local historian Ed Hynes will lead a gallery walk and talk.

The Danbury Raid features maps of British troop movements, accounts of skirmishes between Redcoats and patriots at Ridgefield and Compo Hill, portraits of the principal commanders, and displays of uniforms and weaponry.

The raid on Danbury was prompted by intelligence from Loyalists indicating the patriots had gathered a large store of military supplies and food in Danbury. The British thought their raid would encounter only scant resistance since most of Connecticut’s Continental Army regulars had been sent to New Jersey to reinforce Gen. George Washington.

On their way back from Danbury to Westport, the British encountered patriots in Ridgefield. After the skirmish there, Major Benedict Arnold withdrew patriot troops to Westport’s Old Hill, where he thought he would have a commanding position from which to fire his cannons at the British as they approached the King’s Highway Bridge over the Saugatuck. Arnold’s plan failed, however, when loyalists accompanying the British led them to an upstream ford known only to locals.

Edward Hynes is a native of Wilton who lives in Norwalk. He and his wife have traveled extensively to various battlefields around the country and overseas. Hynes gives lectures and talks on local history, including most recently The Raid on Danbury at the Wilton Historical Society.

Gallery visitors should meet at the Westport Historical Society, 25 Avery Place, Westport, at 10. Lola Chen, museum educator from the Wilton Historical Society, will be on hand to greet visitors who arrive for the talk. The talk is free but contributions are welcome.

Information: 203-762-7257.