Nathan Hale: Yale 1773 :: Curator: Richard E. Mooney mssa exhibition

Hale's Life in Connecticut  |  The Years At Yale  |  In The Revolutionary War  |  How Sculptors Saw Him  |  George Dudley Seymour  |  Images & Namesakes  

In The Revolutionary War: One year and a fateful final fortnight
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Benjamin Tallmadge and John André
In 1780 Hale's classmate Benjamin Tallmadge (far left), by then chief of General Washington's agents spying on British headquarters in New York City, took charge of the captive Major John André, caught with plans from Benedict Arnold for the surrender of West Point. When André asked what would happen to him, Tallmadge reminded him that four years earlier the British had hanged "a much loved classmate in Yale College by the name of Nathan Hale… and similar will be your fate." This entry in Tallmadge's memoirs supports the belief - widely shared but never officially documented - that the popular André, who pleaded for an officer's death by firing squad, was instead hanged as retaliation for Hale.