The poem is spoken by the landlord of the Wayside Inn and tells the fictionalized story of Paul Revere. In the poem, Revere tells a friend to prepare signal lanterns in the Old North Church to inform him if the British will attack by land or sea. He would await the signal across the river in Charlestown and be ready to spread the alarm throughout Middlesex County, Massachusetts. The unnamed friend climbs up the steeple and soon sets up two signal lanterns, informing Revere that the British are coming by sea. Revere rides his horse through Medford, Lexington, and Concord to warn the patriots. Illustrated by Mary Cassatt of two family members. Cassatt’s brother and nephew posed for this double portrait during a visit to the artist in Paris. She not only painted several portraits of her brother, a prominent Philadelphia businessman, but also advised his art collecting. As a result, he was one of the first in Philadelphia to own works by the French Impressionists.