Plaque at Brockport cemetery commemorates Boston Tea Party participant


BROCKPORT, N.Y. — The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum and Revolution 250 partnered with the town of Sweden and village of Brockport to place a commemorative marker at the grave of Joseph Roby — a participant in the Boston Tea Party protest against British taxation of its American colonies — on Monday, July 10 at High Street Cemetery in Brockport.

This event is part of an effort to place markers at the graves of known Boston Tea Party participants for the 250th anniversary of the Boston Tea Party Dec. 16, 2023. This is the 127th plaque to have been placed.

Joseph Roby of Philadelphia, a direct descendant of his namesake, was among those in attendance.

According to the organizers, Joseph Roby was born in Lynn, Massachusetts, on Feb. 17, 1753. Roby was a tinman and tradesman in Boston, and was 20 years old when he participated in the Boston Tea Party. In 1774, during the Revolutionary War, Roby served as a local militia at the rank of Lieutenant under Captain Roger. By April 1775, Roby was a senior officer in command and his unit guarded Cape Ann (Mass.). Soon after, he received a captain’s commission and raised a company of 60 men under his command.  In July 1775 the company marched to Cambridge, Mass.  While at Prospect Hill, where he was stationed with his troops, Joseph Roby took ill.  Though he survived, when his enlistment expired in December 1775, he turned down the offer to reenlist, claiming he was still in too poor health to serve.  He moved to Hanover, New Hampshire, in 1817 and he lived out his days in Brockport, N.Y., where he died on April 13, 1836.  

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