Betrayed By A Mason: The Tragic Real-Life Story Of The Lt. Thomas Boyd Ambush During The Sullivan Campaign (Part II)

When last we left Lieutenant Thomas Boyd, he and his squad of scouts had run smack dab into the middle of an ambush. Outnumbered and surrounded by the enemy, remarkably a half dozen would escape and make it back to the camp alive. The others were not so lucky. Did you know Boyd, in particular, would suffer the cruelest of fates? Click the link below for this week’s episode of The State of Greater Western New York Report to discover the ultimate betrayal.

Last week we covered the key players and the impetus for the mission we call today the “Sullivan Campaign.” Did you miss it? Click here to watch “Betrayed By A Mason: The Tragic Real-Life Story Of The Lt. Thomas Boyd Ambush During The Sullivan Campaign (Part I),” (The State of Greater Western New York Report, March 9, 2023).

This week, Michael Karpovage, Mason historian, author, and mapmaker, returns to tell us the rest of the story. Karpovage spoke at the Scottish Rite Valley of Rochester’s College of Freemasonry in Webster, New York on March 4, 2023. There, the Fairport, NY native and Rochester Institute of Technology graduate took attendees on a spell-binding tour of 18 examples where Masonic brothers, though enemies on the battlefield, saved each other because of their fraternal bonds. One of those stories, ironically, exposes a time when those bonds were betrayed. It is the sad story of Lieutenant Thomas Boyd, a 23-year-old Scout in Major General John Sullivan’s Campaign who, through a series of bad decisions, met his fate in the woodland ridges of want is now Livingston County.

In the show’s first segment, Karpovage gives us a bird’s eye of the immediate events leading up to the ambush. He explains the positions of the soldiers and Boyd’s strategy for escape. He presents eyewitness accounts of the bravery of the men and even reveals what made the Indians laugh at themselves.

in the second half of the show, Karpovage relays the horrid details of Boyd’s torture and mutilation. He tells us about the contemporary sources of the information, what happened in the aftermath of the massacre, and how the site has since been memorialized. He even shows you what you can see if you go there today.

Our guest happily answered questions from the live audience. In fact, these are probably some of the same questions you had. Would you like to be a live audience member so you can ask our guests questions? Click here to join the growing number of members who share your feelings on because then we can automatically send you the link to watch our shows live.

Theme music by “mansardian” courtesy of under Creative Commons License Attribution 3.0

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  1. Awesome information!!! I have read all three books and I loved the mix of fiction and non-fiction of the characters portrayed. I especially liked how you rolled in the history of the area and looking forward to visiting Western NY to check out locations mentioned in the books. When will the next book come out?

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