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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Lydia Darragh

Lydia Darragh by Tatum

Sometimes great contributions to help one's country are made with just a few words.

Little is known about Lydia Darragh's early life. Darragh was born in 1728, in Dublin, Ireland. She married William Darragh in 1753 at the age of twenty-four. She immigrated to America, where she settled in Philadelphia before the Revolutionary War.

All because of Darragh, George Washington's army was prepared for a British ambush. Darragh was a Quaker, so the British wanted to use her household for meetings.  At one meeting, the British demanded that the whole family stay in one bedroom. Suspicious, Darragh snuck out of the room and hid in a chamber closet. In the closet, she overheard about an ambush on Washington's army. Hearing signs of the meeting concluding, she scurried back to the bedroom and pretended to be asleep. They knocked on the door, but when she opened, they did not suspect anything was wrong. The next morning, she announced that she needed flour. Instead, she delivered the information to a General, who she didn't believe would report back to Whitemarsh. Washington's troop was ready for the ambush on December, 1777, and turned a British victory into a disappointment.
After the war, Lydia lived a normal life. Her husband died in 1783. In 1786, she moved to a new house and ran a store. Darragh then died on December 28, 1789. In 1827, her daughter Ann published a book on her mother's spy work.

Darragh's courage throughout the war proved that women can be just as good as men.

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