Sybil Ludington's Ride | WAMC

Sybil Ludington's Ride

Apr 26, 2012

On a dark and rainy night 235 years ago, 16-year old Sybil Ludington rode her horse into history - Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Dave Lucas reports

“Listen, my children, and you shall hear, Of a ride of our female Paul Revere…”  Sybil Ludington's 40 mile trek was a small victory that helped lead to American Independence and the eventual formation of the United States.

George Ludington is Town Supervisor of Maine, New York, about 70 miles south of Syracuse in Broome County. The 80-year old is proud to be a distant relative. On the evening of April 26, 1777, Colonel Henry Ludington got word at his home in Ludingtonville that the British army was mounting an attack from the sea on Danbury, Connecticut, several miles away. Daughter Sybil mounted her horse named STAR, and carrying a short stick to rap on doors, she rode through Dutchess and Putnam counties 9 pm to dawn.

George Ludinton says Sybil's night long ride resulted in four hundred militia driving the British out of Danbury and back to Long Island. Sybil actually rode twice as far, and unlike Paul Revere - did NOT get caught by the British. A feat that did not go unnoticed by the future U.S. President.  Despite Longfellow’s poem, Revere rode only twenty miles before the British captured him and took him back to Lexington.