Young Benjamin Davidson

Written By: Commander Cody CC-2224


The streets of Yorktown, Virginia, were serene as ever. It was a cold, dark October night in 1759. Across Main Street, a night-watcher clad all in black carrying a lantern in his right hand and a pistol in the other ambled steadily past the fairly tidy clapboard houses across the cobblestone street.

At the edge of Main Street was a plain-looking but respectable two-gabled, two-storied clapboard house. From downstairs shrill cries could be heard across the room. This was the cry of a woman in labor who was about to give birth to her child.

The main bedroom downstairs was hectic as ever and noisy as well. In the middle of the bed was a twenty-three-year-old woman screaming and crying. Her belly was plump as ever, and her entire body, including her black-brown hair was bathed in sweat that could nearly be reflected by candlelight. Tears of pain streaked across her face as she struggled and cried out loudly several times.

Near the left bedside was a young midwife trying her utmost to calm the struggling woman. The screams of agony reverberated across the clapboard room and echoed through the dark house…

The Next Day…

The woman's labors had lasted into the night and still continued on through the sunlit morning. After nearly several exhausting, agonizing minutes, the cries of a human baby could now be heard.

The nearly exhausted midwife rushed to the bedroom entrance in excitement and opened the door hastily, awaking a young individual in his mid-20s out of his wits.

"Mr. Davidson! Mr. Davidson!" exclaimed the midwife excitedly. "Come quick! Come quick! The baby is born! Come! Come!"

This was Mr. Matthew Davidson, a twenty-seven-year-old mercantile owner who operated a general store in the edgy middle of Yorktown's Main Street. He was dressed in his usual business clothes, with his dark green waistcoat, his white shirt, black breeches, plain white stockings, and black buckled shoes. His chocolate-brown hair, with a tinge of light tone to it, was pulled into a ponytail by a white ribbon. A plain white neckerchief was wrapped around his neck as part of his everyday dress. For the past several hours Mr. Davidson was fraught with relentless anxiety over the condition of his beloved wife, as he restlessly paced the front parlor with agitated gait. The very thought of losing his wife, or child, or possibly both, was something he could never fully bear in the back of his mind.

But when midwife rushed forward with the news of a successful birth, Mr. Davidson was very much overjoyed from his heart. Springing up from his mahogany Windsor chair with enthusiasm, he immediately followed the midwife into the bedroom, taking great strides.

What he now witnessed greatly astounded him, and joy wrapped across his body. His lovely brunette wife, still clad in a nightgown and nightcap, was tenderly holding a recently cleaned-up baby in her loving arms. This was Mrs. Rebecca Davidson, and she had just given birth to an infant son.

"'Tis a boy, Matthew," she said a little weakly, while beaming at her fairly young husband. "'Tis your son…"

Mr. Davidson was so overjoyed while gazing at his infant son that he almost couldn't find the appropriate words. "A-Aye, 'tis so, Becky," he said, struggling to overcome his hesitation, as he peered closer to survey and catch a glimpse of his red little face, and the chocolate brown eyes that almost resembled that of his father's. The baby looked very asleep. "'Tis a boy, indeed," he said quietly with pleasure.

Mrs. Davidson gazed fondly at her infant son and beamed gratefully. The midwife stood beside the left bedside, standing straight in an almost relaxed and relieved position, with her hands below the skirt of her dress and clasped together. "Any ideas…on what to call…our baby boy?"

Mr. Davidson thought for a brief moment. "I know just the one," he said quite excitedly, breathing rapidly in excitement, unable to reserve himself. "We'll call him Benjamin. How 'bout that?"

Mrs. Davidson mused a little. "Benjamin Matthew Davidson," she said quietly, as though her voice was slightly hoarse. She breathed a happy sigh. "I like it. Rolls off the tongue…"

"I think it does," agreed Mr. Davidson.