Who Was Sybil Ludington?

Her life, character and legend are remembered annually through the NRA Sybil Ludington Women’s Freedom Award.

by posted on July 25, 2022
Sybil Ludington Lede

It was a rainy night in 1777 when an exhausted messenger collapsed at the Ludington’s door. He conveyed the dark news that the British were attacking Danbury, a depot for Patriot military stores during the Revolutionary War. The city was burning, but Colonel Ludington’s minutemen were scattered across the countryside at their perspective farms with no way to call them to arms.

The messenger was exhausted; Ludington had to rally his men and strategize their impending defense. All who was left was the colonel’s 16-year-old daughter, Sybil Ludington. She knew the route, though it was long and treacherous. Still, she took a horse and roused the minutemen asleep in their beds through 20 miles of muddy and enemy-infested wilderness … and then she rode back. Four hundred troops marched to Danbury at daybreak because of her bravery.

Sybil’s life, character and legend is unfortunately too often forgotten completely. She is sometimes referred to as the female Paul Revere, but in reality, her journey was longer and more treacherous than that of Revere, yet far less celebrated. In light of her unrequited bravery, the NRA created the Sybil Ludington Women’s Freedom Award in 1995 to recognize women like her, who demonstrate extraordinary dedication to the Second Amendment.

Sybil Ludington bravely rallied her father’s rebel army in the dead of night riding horseback across 40 miles of dangerous territory in 1777. In present day, the NRA will commend one strong woman who bravely stands up for our freedoms. She will have a fierce dedication to the Second Amendment and a commitment to the values of the NRA. If you know someone the embodies these qualities, nominate her here.

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