Prince Estabrook, born in 1744, was an African American slave who fought for the American colonies in the Revolutionary War. His contribution to American history is significant as one of the few documented African American soldiers who fought for American independence.
Estabrook was born into slavery in Massachusetts and was owned by Josiah Estabrook. Prince was trained as a blacksmith and served as a personal servant to Josiah’s son, Simon. In 1775, Simon enlisted in the Continental Army and brought Prince with him to serve as his personal assistant.
Service in the Revolutionary War
Prince Estabrook served under Captain William Smith in Colonel John Nixon’s regiment, which fought at the Battle of Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775. He later went on to fight at the Battle of Bunker Hill on June 17, 1775, where he was severely wounded but survived.
After his recovery, Prince continued to serve in the Continental Army until his discharge on December 31, 1783. During this time he fought in several battles including Saratoga and Monmouth.
Following his service in the military, Prince returned to his former owner’s household where he continued working as a blacksmith. However, due to his service during the Revolutionary War and his participation in fighting for American independence, he gained a measure of freedom.
Prince Estabrook died at age eighty-five after living a long life that saw a significant change in America’s social and political landscape.
Prince Estabrook’s contribution to American history is significant because he represents one of many African Americans who fought for America’s independence despite being held captive themselves. He also serves as an example of how those who were once enslaved could gain their freedom through service in wartime.
The story of Prince Estabrook is a reminder of the sacrifice and dedication of those who fought for America’s independence, regardless of race or social status. His life serves as an inspiration to many, and his legacy will continue to be remembered as part of America’s rich history.