A Proclamation (abbreviating).
The opening phase of the American Revolutionary War, known as the Siege of Boston, began on April 19, 1775 with militia from Massachusetts’ communities surrounding Boston, blocking land access, and limiting British resupply of naval operations. At the time of the Siege of Boston, there were 14,000-16,000 troops in the American Continental Army based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and 10,000 troops in the British Army garrisoned in Boston. Following the Battle of Bunker Hill that took place on Breeds Hill in June 1775, which gave control of the fortification to the British, but at great cost, thereby severely limiting Britain’s power and ability to retaliate.
In November 1775, General George Washington moved to end the stalemate between the British and the Continental Army by instructing 25 year old bookseller-turned-soldier Henry Knox to bring heavy artillery that had been captured at Fort Ticonderoga to Boston. On March 2, 1776 these cannons opened fire on the British, creating a diversion and thereby allowing preparations by the Continental Army for the fortification of Dorchester Heights.
On March 4, 1776 General John Thomas and 2,000 American troops marched to the top of Dorchester Heights to fortify it against British retaliation, successfully gaining a strategic advantage over the British and causing British General Howe to concede defeat to the Continental Army on March 10, 1776. On March 13, 1776 General George Washington assembled his officers and directed their movements from “Brinley Place,” later known as “Pierpont Castle,” and now the Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help (Mission Church), for the evacuation of British troops from Boston.
On March 17, 1776, with favorable winds, the British troops finally evacuated Boston, in a fleet of 120 ships, carrying 9,906 British troops and 1,000 British loyalists, setting sail for Halifax, Nova Scotia, Now, Therefore, I, Charles D. Baker, Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, do hereby proclaim March 17th, 2016, to be, MASSACHUSETTS EVACUATION DAY.
And urge all the citizens of the Commonwealth to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.
By His Excellency Charles D. Baker (Governor of the Commonwealth)
Karyn E. Polito (Lt. Governor of the Commonwealth)
William Francis Galvin (Secretary of the Commonwealth)
God Save the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Evacuation Day is a holiday observed in Suffolk County (which includes the cities of Boston, Chelsea, Revere, and the Town of Winthrop) and also by the public schools in Somerville, Massachusetts. The holiday commemorates the evacuation of British forces from the city of Boston following the Siege of Boston, early in the American Revolutionary War. Schools and government offices (including some Massachusetts state government offices located in Suffolk County) are closed. If March 17 falls on a weekend, schools and government offices are closed on the following Monday in observance. It is the same day as Saint Patrick’s Day, a coincidence that played a role in the establishment of the holiday. This holiday are unrestricted holiday which mean that neither premium pay (time and one half) nor voluntariness requirements.
Source: mass.gov | wikipedia.org