Following the Battle of Lexington and Concord, thousands of militiamen, from all over New England, marched to Cambridge, waiting for their next orders from Commander In Chief George Washington. After taking command of the Continental Army on July 3, 1775, Washington ordered the troops to fortify Cambridge in an effort to protect the town from future British attacks. One of the early plans included a massive earthworks project. Earthworks are constructed banks of soil used to protect against potential assaults. These earthworks consisted of two lines of fortifications that ran from Dana Hill to what is now the intersection of Broadway and Massachusetts Avenue. The fortifications built by the Continental Forces were part of a training plan used to prepare the soldiers for building larger defensive walls at Dorchester Heights in Boston.

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