He acquired fame throughout the American Colonies for his bravery during the French and Indian War and because of his dashing appearance leading his volunteer troops, he was given the nickname, "Yankee Doodle". He was the inspiration for the patriotic song.
Colonal Fitch was a distinguished officer during the French and Indian War at Crown Point, the Battle of Beauport, and Cape Breton, Louisiana and during the American Revolution. He led his hastily recruited volunteers to reinforce General William Johnson against the enemies at Ticonderoga and Crown Point in 1755. The well-dressed Colonel Fitch in his fine, gentleman’s clothes and his raggedly dressed, but victorious soldiers inspired the famous song and the nickname, "Yankees" for Americans.
During the Revolutionary War, he was one of the chief American commanders at Norwalk, Connecticut. He commanded a regiment of Fairfield County militia and reinforced Washington in the summer of 1776. He and his regiment were with General Wooster at Rye, New York during the winter of 1776-1777.
When British troops attacked Norwalk on July 11, 1779, Colonel Fitch's militia wrecked havoc on the British troops. The British set the town on fire destroying most of the homes. Colonel Fitch’s home was set on fire but extinguished before it was totally destroyed.
Colonial Fitch’s grandfather was my 7th great grandfather. His father, Governor Fitch’s sister, Elizabeth and her husband, Joshua Raymond were my 6th great grandparents.
Colonial Thomas Fitch married Sarah St. John on April 28, 1763 in Norwich, Connecticut. They had no children but Colonial Thomas Fitch will live on and not be forgotten through the song he inspired.
So, now you know the truth and the real man behind the legend of Yankee Doodle.