Rhode Island was a hotbed of espionage during the Revolutionary War. Many ordinary Rhode Islanders— some with Tory sympathies, and some Patriots— became spies, in some cases risking their lives repeatedly to serve the cause they believed in.
Historian Christian M. McBurney will talk about some of the many spies who operated in Rhode Island in the Revolutionary era. Mr. McBurney, a native of Kingston who works in Washington, D.C., is the author of Spies in Revolutionary Rhode Island. The book contains the first detailed description of the espionage activities surrounding the British and French occupations of Newport, then a major American port.