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A Talk with Marquis de Lafayette

  • St. John's Church Foundation 2401 East Broad Street Richmond, VA, 23223 United States (map)

St. John’s Church Foundation is pleased to host a talk with the Marquis de Lafayette in honor of Bastille Day (July 14th, 1789).

Doors open for seating at 1:45 p.m. The program will last 30 minutes followed by a Q&A with the Marquis.

Born into nobility and baptized Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, the young Marquis de Lafayette sympathized with the colonies in British America. Lafayette was unlike many nobles in that he wanted to protect the rights of the common person. Finding the colonies wrongly oppressed, Lafayette longed to stand up for the patriotic cause. Lafayette purchased a ship named the Victory and funded his own way to America, vowing to fight for Liberty. Congress, in the early stages of government, could not pay the young officer and turned down his services. Lafayette would not be turned away and agreed to serve without pay. Congress awarded the Marquis de Lafayette the rank of Major General to serve at General Washington’s side. This strengthened the bond between them and soon Washington referred to Lafayette as his adopted son. Over time Washington gave more responsibility and trust to Lafayette along with the command of troops in the field, enabling Lafayette to save the army in many battles. Washington sent Lafayette south to capture the traitor Benedict Arnold. Instead, he cornered and helped capture General Cornwallis at Yorktown. 

Earlier Event: July 9
Liberty or Death Reenactment
Later Event: July 16
Liberty or Death Reenactment