On This Date September 22,1776- Nathan Hale executed for spying

September 22, 1776 – Nathan Hale, a Connecticut schoolteacher and captain in the Continental
Army is executed by the British for spying. A graduate of Yale University, Hale joined a
Connecticut regiment in 1775 and served in the successful siege of British-occupied Boston. On
September 10, 1776, he volunteered to cross behind British lines on Long Island to spy on the
British in preparation for the Battle of Harlem Heights. After being led to the gallows, legend
holds that the 21-year-old Hale said, “I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country.”
There is no historical record to prove that Hale actually made this statement, but, if he did, he
may have been inspired by these lines in English author Joseph Addison’s 1713 play Cato:
“What a pity it is/That we can die but once to serve our country.”

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Sep 22 2024


All Day