Experience a living history performance as Judith Kalaora, Founder and Artistic Director of History at Play, portrays Deborah Sampson, the first woman to enlist, to fight and after being wounded to be honorably discharged from the American Military.
At 5′ 9″ tall, Sampson disguised herself as a man, binding her chest and tying back her hair to enlist in the Fourth Massachusetts Regiment of the Continental Army under the alias “Robert Shurtleff.” During her first battle, on July 3, 1782, outside Tarrytown, New York, she took two musket balls to her thigh and a cut on her forehead. She begged her fellow soldiers to let her die and not to take her to the hospital, but a soldier put her on his horse and took her to a hospital. The doctors treated her head wound, but she left the hospital before they could attend to her other wounds. Fearful that her identity would be discovered, she removed one of the balls herself with a penknife and sewing needle, but the other musket ball was too deep for her to reach and her leg never fully healed.
Join us as Kalaora recounts Sampson’s arduous upbringing, one and a half years of active combat, and success as our first female professional soldier. This is accomplished through interactive stories while garbed in authentic colonial attire.
Recent reviews of her performances found her “mesmerizing, wonderful, fantastic, marvelous.”
“Judith Kalaora is Deborah Sampson from the minute she walks through the door.”
“Judith is a one woman force of nature. It takes people like her to bring those
lost pieces of history to life.”
Admission is $75 per person in support of The New Canaan Historical Society Preservation Fund. Fifty percent of the ticket price is tax deductible. There is a special student admission of $20 per student covering the performance only. Space is limited so call for reservations (203) 966-1776, or send a check to The New Canaan Historical Society, 13 Oenoke Ridge, New Canaan, CT 06840. To pay by PayPal click here.