America’s Lost Heroes – African American Patriots: Were all the Founders racists slave owners; or, were many of them actually abolitionists? Were slave-owning Founding Fathers the exception or the rule? Did you know in Maryland more blacks than whites voted to ratify the Constitution? Do you know when the first black American held an elected office? Have you heard of Robert Smalls, a general in the Civil War? How about Benjamin Banneker? Tune in to hear why Black History is part of our American History.

Air Date: 07/15/2020

On-air Personalities: David Barton, Rick Green, and Tim Barton


Download: Click Here

Transcription note:  As a courtesy for our listeners’ enjoyment, we are providing a transcription of this podcast. Transcription will be released shortly. However, as this is transcribed from a live talk show, words and sentence structure were not altered to fit grammatical, written norms in order to preserve the integrity of the actual dialogue between the speakers. Additionally, names may be misspelled or we might use an asterisk to indicate a missing word because of the difficulty in understanding the speaker at times. We apologize in advance.

Faith and the Culture


Welcome to WallBuilders Live with David Barton and Rick Green. A lot of you have seen the “American Heritage Series with David Barton”. Well, the sequel has now come out, “Building on the American Heritage Series” has been released. You can actually order it at our website right now at Here we go to building on the “American Heritage Series with David Barton”.

Well, David, our topic is “Black history in America”, we’d now do February is Black History month. But it seems like we often only look at the last 40 or 50 years of black history. What were some of the great black Americans earlier in our history?


Well, you’re right. So, much of black history today focuses from the time of Martin Luther King coming forward. And that’s important guys, really important stuff. But we used to know a whole lot more about our history. We knew of black patriots way back in the beginning. Matter of fact, here’s a really special book. This is one that came out in 1852, the “Services of Colored Americans in the Wars of 1776 and 1812”.

Now, there’s a book done by William Nell. And by the way, William Nell is the first black American to have any position in federal government. And this is this kind of introduction to, look at all the black patriots we had in the revolution wars of 1812. And then he came back three years later with a really big book.

And this is the book from three years later, “The colored patriots of the American Revolution with the stories, service of these distinguished color patriots” And you go through here and there are scores of names out of the American Revolution that we’ve really never heard about.


And so that’s already a paradigm shift, because most of the time you think about the revolution and you think it’s a bunch of rich white guys that started America.


Yeah, he did. And need to know the names of the heroes. Black heroes from Bunker Hill or from Yorktown or from Lexington or from Washington crossing the Delaware, we don’t know, the Battle of Groton Heights, all the Battle of Newport, all these battles were black heroes were the hero. We don’t hear a thing about that. We don’t hear a thing about blacks being elected to office back in the founding era.

Wentworth Cheswell

I mean, in 1768 Wentworth Cheswell, church leaders elected to office New Hampshire. He becomes a historian of New Hampshire. The great history of New Hampshire by Jeremy Belknap. It was the work of Wentworth Cheswell, black historian who fed so much that to him. He was reelected for 49 years to eight different political offices. I mean, that’s fairly significant. We’ve never heard of Wentworth Cheswell.

We don’t hear a thing about Thomas Hercules. He’s a black official elected in Pennsylvania in 1793. He was elected in a wide area, Pennsylvania by a huge majority of votes. I mean, we never hear even about the voting that happened. The states like Massachusetts, there was never a time when blacks couldn’t vote in Massachusetts.

And if you look even at the Constitution of the United States, you look at what happened in ratifying the Constitution, you have to go through all the States. Never heard about all the blacks who voted in ratification constitution. I mean, you go to Maryland… in Baltimore, more blacks than whites voted to ratify the Constitution of the United States. We hear nothing about that. That’s not part of what we teach in black history. We’ll start in the 1960s and move forward. But how about all the stuff that happened back in the 1600s and 1700s and 1800s?


If you leave all of that out, then you tend to teach both black and white Americans that blacks didn’t contribute until the 1960s instead of recognizing they made great contributions from the very beginning.


Oh, man. Black inventors. Black scientists. You have black mathematicians. You have black soldiers. You have black sailors. I mean, Robert Smalls, in the Civil War, he’s the first black captain of military ship, became a general in the Civil War. We’d never heard of Robert Smalls. Became a black member of Congress right after the Civil War. I mean, a great story and we’ve never heard of him. So, we don’t see…


Well, even what you just said members of Congress, black members of Congress…

First Black Members of Congress


Black members of Congress. There’s a great lithograph [inaudible 04:00] and it shows the first blacks elected to Congress. On the far-left side, sitting there as the first black US Senator Hiram Rhodes Revels. Oh, by the way, he is the Reverend Hiram Rhodes Revels. He is a preacher of the gospel. He was a missionary. He raised three full regiments of black soldiers in the Civil War. I mean, just a great guy.

Over on the other side. You see folks like Joseph Hayne Rainey. Joseph Hayne Rainey is the first black elected to the House of Representatives. And by the way, he’s the first black to preside over the House of Representatives. But we’ve never talked about these guys. With the other guys there, you got Benjamin Turner, you got Josiah Walls, you got Robert De Large, you got Robert Brown Elli. We don’t talk about them in any way, shape, fashion or form. We just didn’t even know that this happened in our history. There’s just so many things that have gotten away from our history.

And Benjamin Banneker, I love the story of Benjamin Banneker. Got to tell the story because it’s so cool. Because Benjamin Banneker in the founding era, he became a self-taught mathematician and scientist, really incredible guy. But what Benjamin did, was he one time asked his friend to see his pocket watch. Of course, you know, it’s a windup pocket watch back then. So, Benjamin took that pocket watch, turn it over, unscrew the back off the pocket watch, looked inside, studied for a while, put the back on it, gave it back to his friend. He went home, he carved a clock out of wood that kept accurate time to within one minute a year.


Holy cow! So, just from looking, all he did was look at it. Didn’t even take it apart.


He looked at it and he said, I can do that. Goes home, carved out of wood. It’s incredible. Well, he goes on to teach himself math and science. Thomas Jefferson chose him as one of the seven guys allowed…


Did you said, he taught himself? So, not formal training. He does this kind of scientific thing. All he did is just teach himself?

Banneker’s Almanac 


Yeah, he goes to his friend, Andrew Ellicott and say, do you have any books on math? I want to read some math books. And he would teach himself math and he teach himself science. He came up with an almanac that was printed. Now, his Almanac came out in the 1790s. Very famous Almanac with Benjamin Banneker. And by the way, the guy who helped fund it was James McHenry, signer of the US Constitution. A white guy that wanted to make sure that Almanac got out. So, he upped raise the funding and get this Almanac printed.

And Banneker’s Almanac, now Banneker taught himself science. Benjamin Banneker in an Almanac would predict the exact minute of sunrise and sunset, even 10 years in advance. His calculations are incredible and he sent a copy of his Almanac to Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson gets that and says, ah, this is the proof.

Look how brilliant this guy is. He sends it off to the anti-slavery forces in France, said, look, here’s a perfect example of a black man. Look at the computation. I think he’s the greatest scientist in American history. We’ve never heard of Benjamin Banneker anyway. I mean, what a great model he was. And again, black and white side by side cooperating, wasn’t racism. I mean, he and Andrew Ellicott and what they did and Jefferson use, it’s good stuff.


But you’re giving great examples. If we do go all the way back, Revolutionary War examples, this kid, right after the Revolutionary War, you go all the way through the Civil War, these first members of Congress, if we hold up these examples, we can say to young black Americans, look, you’ve had a piece of the American dream from the beginning. So, how do we get it back into the history books and how do we get people to go back and read this story?


Well, guess what? Black history is part of my history because I’m an American and this is part of American history…


We’re living the benefit of what they did.

Lost Heroes


Exactly right. And so, we have to get this back ourselves. Then once we get it, we have to pass it on. Because this will change the paradigm of everyone, black or white. When you say that, you know what there, yeah, there was some racism back there. But there’s a ton of stuff that was such good cooperation between blacks and whites and others. And there’s so many positive, uplifting examples.

You don’t have to choose between Michael Jordan and Dr. King, although both of those are great examples. You have hundreds of uplifting, edifying choices from across American history. And if we don’t get back to knowing our own history, we’ll never be able to recover the wholesomeness that made America so good.


Alright, David, a lot of great questions today on black history in America. Let’s get the first one. Why should I be proud of the founding fathers and the revolution when none of them wanted to enslave? This is a question not just from black Americans, but white Americans as well.


Rarely is an element that deconstruction stuff where that we always present the negative about America and we present the exception rather than the rule. Great example. I spoke recently Southern University Law School, really sharp kids. This is one of the traditional black colleges and universities in America. And so, when I was there, I made the comment. I said, well, you know, as we know, unfortunately, all of our founding fathers, signers of Declaration, all bunch of racists and bigots and slave owners. That’s just one of the bad downsides of America.


Hey, that’s what they literally taught me in law school. Why should I listen to anything these guys…?


That’s right. And that’s why I put that out there. And everybody said, yeah, that’s right. You know, it’s too bad. And I said, oh, by the way, I said, who have their own slaves? And everybody said, well, Thomas Jefferson did. I said, yeah, who else own slaves? They couldn’t name anybody else. And I said, so. wait a minute, 56 guys there, one on slave. So, that means they’re all slave owners, all racist, all bigots.

So, I said, what do you do over here with this man, Benjamin Rush? And this man right here, Ben Franklin in 1774 as an act of civil disobedience to King George III, they formed the first abolition society in America. The king had said, you can’t do that. And they said, watch us. We think God wants blacks to be free. We think all men are equal.

Radical Abolitionists

So, you have to probably what you would call radical abolitionists in these two guys. That is an act of civil disobedience start the first abolition society. Now, significantly with that, you have to go back into American history where that in 1773, you had a number of the Northern colonies, especially at the start of passing anti-slavery laws. You had Rhode Island 1773, that’s it, passed an anti-slavery law. 1774, you have Connecticut, you have Pennsylvania, you have all these states trying to pass anti-slavery laws.

1774 is when King George III stepped in and vetoed every American anti-slavery law. At that point, he said, hold it guys. He said, you’re part of the British Empire. We have slavery in the British Empire. As long as you’re part of the British Empire, you’re going to have slavery. And that’s when several Founding Fathers said, great, let’s not be part of the British Empire. And specifically, that’s where Benjamin Rush and Ben Franklin said, we’re not going to do this.

Now, significantly in the Declaration of Independence, it list the desire to end slavery twice as often as that list taxation in that representation. We always hear about taxation, we don’t hear about the others. That’s the kind of attitude that you have throughout the revolution with so many of the Founding Fathers.

Now, again, not all of them own slave and a whole lot of… I mean, John Adams said he would have no slave allowed in his house because slavery were so abominable. Samuel Adams actually freed slaves. People would want to give them gifts and what can you give more than slave? People give some, no. As soon as he was given a slave, he freed the slave on the spot. He fought against slavery. You got a lot of Founding Fathers who never owned slaves, would not own slaves. Fought against slavery. There were hardcore abolitionists.

But there were others that did have slavery. And by the way, Ben Franklin here, Ben Franklin also joined with this man right here, this guy sitting right there on the edge is Francis Hopkinson. And Ben Franklin and Francis Hopkinson back in 1768 started a whole chain of schools for black Americans to teach black Americans academics and Christianity and the Bible.

Now, under British policy, you didn’t teach black Americans, that kind of stuff, illegal, that’ll get you in trouble. Here’s two Founding Fathers, signer of the Declaration who said we don’t care what the British law is, this is wrong. We’re all created equal.

And we’re going to teach black Americans the same things we teach white Americans and that is the Bible and Christianity and academics. You also have folks like this man here with the hat, that’s Stephen Hopkins, Steven Hopkins became the first founding father to sign an anti-slavery law after we separated from Great Britain.

Lies About the Founders


It sounds like a lot of these guys, not only were not slave owners, they were actively trying to get rid of slavery and even used it as one of the reasons why we wanted to become an independent nation.


You bet they were. Now, the Founding Fathers point out that the three southern states of Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, were so strongly pro-slavery, that during the revolution, Congress, the way they fought the revolution was they asked every State to meet kind of a quota. Hey, you get 5% of the population, can you provide 5% of the troops in the Continental Army? You get 25% of the population, so they would try to spread it out where that everybody can participate.

But what happened was the Founding Fathers who represented the deep south States, those deep south States never even met their quotas for soldiers, because the plantation owners were so scared to go fight for freedom. They’re afraid that if they left plantation, slaves might escape. And they would stay home and guard those slaves, rather than go out and fight for freedom for their State and their country.

So, it was northern anti-slavery States, particularly like Connecticut, Massachusetts, that over- supplied soldiers from these anti-slavery States to have enough troops to be able to fight the British. So, what you find is among the Founding Fathers, yeah, there were some pro-slavery guns.

There were some slave owners. About 30% of the Founding Fathers were pro-slavery, but they were the exception, not the rule. And you have lots of guys who did a lot of work to make sure that equal rights and the Declaration of Independence were extended all Americans: black, white, red, whatever.


Okay, David, I’ve got another question from the audience.


Did black Americans fight on both sides of the Revolutionary War?


Most of the country was somewhat split, right? I mean, it was white Americans same way: some were for, some were against. What about black Americans?

John Moran


There were and sometimes the situation was not good. A great example is a black man named John Moran. John Moran was from New York. When he was about 11-12 years old, they moved to South Carolina and he wanted to study music. And at 12 years old, he was really kind of a child prodigy. He was called on to give concerts all over in South Carolina.

And he said that one day as he was going to give a concert, he said he passed by in open pasture and in the middle of that field, he said, there was a crazy man hallooing at the crowd. It turned out the guy in the middle was George Whitfield. And it was one of the meetings in the Great Awakening.

And one of the friends with John who was going to this concert with him dared him to break up the meeting. Pull out his French horn, call up and break up immediately. So, John said, yeah, I’ll do that. So, John pulls out his French horn and this young black American goes and he’s going to play it and break up the meeting.

And just before he did, Whitfield spins and turns and points at him and says, prepare to meet thy God… get your attention. 12 year old about to blow his French horn, break up meeting. Thinks it’s really funny. Well, what happened was, John fell over and just hit the ground. And it turns out that that was kind of a common phenomenon in the Great Awakening.

And so, Whitfield finished a sermon and then went over and got young John by the hand and picked him up and said, we need to talk. And so, Whitfield took him home with him for the next three days, shared with him about God having something for him to do and having plan for him and you need to find out what God wants you to do.

And so, after three days, John Moran says, I want to be a Christian, I want to be a preacher. And so, he tells his family, here’s what’s happened. I’ve become a Christian, I’m going to be a preacher. His family says, do not ever set foot in this house again. We don’t want somebody like you. A preacher, there’s no way you’re going to be part of this family.

So, now here’s a 12 year old black boy out on his own and what do you do? And as the American Revolution broke out, the British found him and they impressed him into the British Navy. Remember, impressment was one of the causes for the separation from Great Britain. Great Britain would send their sailors in and just say, you, you’re now a British sailor, you’re off.

Not a Volunteer

Leave your family. And that’s what they did with John. Here’s a country he loved. Here’s a country where his preaching. And the British have now forced him to fight against his…


So, he’s not volunteering?


He’s not volunteering. He is forced in a British service. And so yeah, there were blacks fighting on both sides of the revolution and sometimes not voluntarily.


Okay, David, let’s get another question from the audience.


We always hear about Watson and other white heroes of the American Revolution. But then Black Americans also fight for independence?


Great question. Typically, you only see when we talk about heroes in the American Revolution, it’s white Americans that we see in those paintings.


Well, we think it is. This painting over my shoulder is a great example. Washington and crossing the Delaware. If you ask people today who’s in the boat, other than George Washington, they wouldn’t have a clue.


Yeah, that’s it.


And yet sitting right up in the front of the boat are two black Americans. You have Oliver Cromwell and you have Prince Whipple, two black Americans who served in the American Revolution. They were with the general staff throughout the American Revolution, serve the general staff. By the way, that is significant. They served throughout the revolution. Your term of enlistment back then was one year.

William Whipple

Well, if you serve the whole revolution, you re-up seven times. That’s a lot of wanting to serve your country. And even the story of Prince Whipple who’s there in the front of the boat, really cool guy, is a neat story. Because his master if you would, he had been a slave. His master was William Whipple, signer of the Declaration of Independence.


“Teach the rising generation to be free.” That’s what John Jay told us to do. You can help raise up a new generation of patriots that understand a biblical, historical and constitutional perspective and they’re trained to lead. Patriot Academy, the last one is happening for this year in the first week of August. It’s a virtual academy, you can do it from anywhere in the country. You got to be 16 to 25 years old to participate.

And you got to go to today and get signed up. The deadline is just a few days away. So, get signed up today. And it’s a virtual Patriot Academy. But even right there in Zoom, they’ll have House floor sessions, committee sessions. They’ll learn the legislative process. They’ll learn a biblical worldview of government. They’ll learn a Founding Fathers philosophy of government jurisdictions. They will help restore America’s constitutional republic.

Help us raise up those patriots. If you’re a young person listening right now, you have a great time of fellowship, meeting other young people from across the country that love God, that love our country and want to save our nation. Be a part of the solution. Check it out at


When the war started, Washington contacted Whipple and said, hey, I need your help in the military, I need you to come be an officer. And so, William Whipple took Prince Whipple and he didn’t consider him a slave. He really was a slave, but he was just part of the family. And so, he took Prince and they’re heading off to get with Washington and do the fighting.

And William Whipple turns to Prince and says, Prince, he said, I hope you’d be really courageous fighting for the liberties of the country? And Prince look back at William said, I can fight a whole lot more if I was fighting for my own freedom. And William looked at him said, you’re right. Didn’t cross my mind, you’re free right now. Freedom on the spot on.

John Jay

And that’s the way it was for a lot of the Founding Fathers. They had slaves as British citizens, they freed them as Americans. John Jay, who’s a huge anti-slavery leader in New York at the time, he wrote the Federalist Papers. He’s a Chief Justice in the US Supreme Court, appointed by George Washington. He said that prior to the American Revolution, for so many Americans, it never crossed their mind to think of slavery, particularly slavery in New England. There weren’t all that many slaves up there. But slaves are more like a part of the family.

Now, it was a different view for slaves. You know, I’m not excusing that at all. But when Prince Whipple turned to William and said, I’d fight a lot more if I’m fighting for my freedom. It’s like epiphany. Yeah, of course, you would. What was I thinking? And gave him his freedom on the spot.

So, here you have principle freed by one of the signers of the Declaration, who said, yeah, slavery is a bad deal. What was I thinking? And that’s the kind of attitude that you have throughout the revolution with so many other Founding Fathers. By and large, you know, most we’re not pro- slavery. But the thing about we say white America is not black. Well, we see George Washington, but we’ve never been pointed out the two guys in front of the boat are black Americans,


Yeah, I think that will surprise a lot of people. Because they’ve seen the painting, but they’ve never been told that they were black Americans there.


Well, consider the painting of the Battle of Bunker Hill. That’s painted by John Trumbull, Founding Father who fought in the revolution. He saw so much what went on. Actually, he’s the guy who painted the signer in the Declaration. John Trumbull painted this. He painted the Battle of Bunker Hill. He paints the hero of Bunker Hill right there in the painting and nobody ever noticed it, because it’s a black guy.

Peter Salem

Here’s a black patriot named Peter Salem. Peter Salem was the hero of the Battle of Margarita. And you see in the painting, he’s standing right there beside Thomas Grove. And I love that image, black and white standing side by side, fighting for the freedom of their country. Peter Salem received more than a dozen military commendations for what he did the Battle of Bunker Hill. He was presented to the commander in chief as the hero of Bunker Hill. They built monuments to Peter Salem, black Patriot. We’ve never even heard.


That’s because I don’t think we teach that at all.


Oh, no, who Peter Salem is? As a matter of fact, in the last 20 years, all these academics is no, no, is not Peter Salem, that is a slave of Thomas Grove. I don’t know if he owns a slave or not. I mean, the thing is, oh, it can’t be a free black. It can’t be a patriot black. There was oppression all over America.

No, there was oppression in some colonies. In other colonies, it was a radically different era, a civil rights kind of attitude. And you have that in Connecticut. Connecticut is one of the anti-slavery States. Once they get free from Great Britain, no slavery. You have the same thing with Massachusetts. You have the same thing with New Hampshire and Vermont. All the states that ended slavery once they get up under British control.


Well, certainly if you had guys like you pointed out earlier, that’s re-up seven times. If they only had to fight a year to be free, clearly, they were fighting for more than just their individual freedom.


Well, talking about re-upping several times, another black soldier that was that way was a guy named Haynes. Now have here, a very rare sermon. This is by Lemuel Haynes, and you see here the Lemuel Haynes at the bottom. Lemuel Haynes is a very special black American. Lemuel Haynes is actually the first black American to receive any higher degree of education. Got a master’s degree from Middlebury College.

But he also was a pastor. He pioneered churches all over New England. And quite frequently, he was the black pastor of a white church. He’s sometimes the black pastor of black church, but often black pastor of a white church. But he had been one of the minutemen down at the early part of the revolution with Lexington and Concord and all the things that happened there and he re-up in the revolution several times.

James Armistead

And so, he served in the early stages of the revolution. And such was his love for his country and first commander-in-chief, George Washington and for the revolution.

That in his pulpits in New England, on George Washington’s Birthday every year, he would preach a special sermon on his commander-in-chief George Washington with whom he served in the American Revolution. So, there is a black who is a great leader, a great educated man, pioneer churches all over New England. He’s not a slave.

Another really fun painting deals with James Armistead. Now, we would never recognize James Armistead. Matter of fact, the painting you see is a Lafayette, the young French general at the Battle of Yorktown, Yorktown is the final battle in the American Revolution. And you got young General Marquis de Lafayette, really good patriot. He loved America. He has his own wealth and resources to bring the French Navy and French soldiers come help and be our allies…


And we teach about him.


And we teach about him. He’s definitely covered in the textbooks. But standing right there beside him with the horse, you see the black guy standing there. Who’s that black guy? That’s a slave. That’s who that is. No. No. No.

That is James Armistead, a really good friend of Marquis de Lafayette. And James Armistead, that black patriot standing right there is the hero of the Battle of Yorktown. Really cool story the way it happened.

James Armistead black patriot comes to Marquis de Lafayette, friends of Marquis de Lafayette, General Lafayette and says, I want to do something to serve my country. And Marquis de Lafayette says well, the problem we’ve got right now is we don’t have good intelligence of what’s going on inside the British camp and we just don’t know what they’re doing till after they’ve done it. And if we could get some kind of information from inside the camp fed back to us, it would really help us. He said, really dangerous assignment.

A Vital Spy

And so, what happened was James Armistead went straggling over to the British camp there in Yorktown and was straggling. And he says, oh, these terrible mean Americans, I hate the Americans. They so abused me. There’s so mistreated me. Would you kind British take me in and take care of?

And so, what they did was they took James Armistead and assign him to be the servant to British General Benedict Arnold. Benedict Arnold, wait, he’s the traitor. Yeah, he’s the traitor in America that switched over to the British side.

So, he switches over to the British side, now he’s a British General. And James Armistead has been assigned to be a servant to him. So, James serves him faithfully, takes his meals, whatever he needs. Well, General Benedict Arnold all the time meeting with the other British Generals and with Lord Cornwallis, head of all the British forces.

And so that means the James is all the time going with the Generals, he’s hearing everything going on. Let’s move 5,000 troops over here. Let’s set up artillery. And every night, he feeds this information back to Lafayette. He said they’re back to move 5,000 troops or set up artillery. Every night, get information back. So, Washington and all the troops know what’s happening with the British.

Well, after faithfully serving the British for a while, Lord Cornwallis came to James, really impressed with James, came to him and said, James, would you consider being a spy for us against the Americans? He said, I know you hate the Americans and they really mistreated you, but would you be a spy for us? And you know, James, just is like, I don’t know those Americans. Well, if you want me too, I’ll be a spy.

So, what you have is Lafayette has a relationship with them and Cornwallis thinks he has a relationship. What happens is Armistead feeds all this bad information to Cornwallis, all the good information to Washington and Lafayette. We end up trapping the British out on the peninsula, get them cut off and Armistead, he wrote the first double spot in American history, cut much off the American Revolution, save scores of American lives. A really cool story about the guy in the painting, James Armistead and we’ve never heard of this guy…

The Hero of Yorktown


When, you said, he’s the hero of Yorktown, I mean, that’s why we win. That’s the most important thing… it


That’s why we win. That is it. Otherwise, the thing would have kept going for a long time. So, after the revolution, when it’s all over and won and Armistead really been the hero, Lafayette goes back to France, because the reason he came is now settled and done. So, in France and by the way, he fights for liberty in France, but he ends up being thrown in the prison. He’s in the [inaudible 24:49] steel and so they imprison him, because he wants liberty for France and doesn’t get it and so all sorts of stuff going on, which really ticked the Americans off, because here’s this guy who came fight for their liberty. Now, he gets back home and gets imprisoned, spent years in prison.

When he finally got out of the steel, by the way, he took a key to the door of the steel, mailed it to George Washington, said I want you to have the symbol of our freedom here in France. We’ve you know, get rid of the torture in the dungeon of the steel. Nonetheless, as Lafayette starts growing old, he recognizes I will die before too long. I need to make a farewell tour of America. I need to go back all the friends I had and he was a hero in America.

If you look inside the US Capitol, there are two paintings inside the house of representatives of Capitol. One is George Washington and the other is Marquis de Lafayette. And as you look at the painting, and he’s a really old guy. He’s not the same Marquis de Lafayette we had in Yorktown, he’s a very old guy. And he came back in 1824.

So, essentially, we’re talking nearly 50 years after the revolution, he’s come back. And he was still such a hero that as he toured all the way across America everywhere, crowds, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands would show up to cheer him. They made ribbons with Lafayette on it, etc.

America’s Lost Heroes – African American Patriots

Well, as he’s in this massive crowd in Richmond, Virginia, having been gone for America for well over 40 years, he looks across the crowd and he sees James Armistead, recognizes him instantly, runs across, they embrace each other, you know, great patriot again, black and white, but for him to pick out somebody he hadn’t seen in 40 years, a black hero and black friend and black patriot, it’s a really cool story with James Armistead.


Thanks for listening, folks. Many of you have the DVD set of the American Heritage Series. You can now get the sequel, which is “Building on the American Heritage Series”. A lot of new material some fantastic programs you want to have in your library. You can get it at our website today at