We really have a lot to be thankful for,
THE 4TH OF JULY !!
Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence? Their story. . .
Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.
Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.
Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.
Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.
They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
What kind of men were they?
Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists and eleven were merchants. Nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated.
But they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.
Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.
Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.
Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton , Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.
At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.
Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.
John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished.
So, take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday and silently thank these patriots. It's not much to ask for the price they paid.
The Fourth of July means more than beer, picnics, and baseball games. True "reflection" is a part of this country's greatness.
Thanks G. R.
It should be remembered that the upcoming holiday is Independence Day, not the 4th of July. The 4th of July is a date on the calendar. It seems many people forget what holiday it is, fewer still know what event the holiday commemorates.
Beautiful reminder! Thanks, G. R.
Thanks. I saved your write-up to a file so I can go back periodically and review.
I will be going to the LA Dodgers ball game and fireworks show after. Havent been to a fireworks show in 30 years. Served 1972-74. I will remember those who gave all and those have served from the beginning. Will also give thanks to the Lord who has provided this for us, Scott
God bless America!!!
GR We have something like that in a small book by Paul Harvey. I read it every year to remind me about the sacrifice many people made in the beginning of our country and the sacrifice others have made so we can have our freedom.
Steve - you are 100% correct. It is not just another calendar date it is Independence Day!
BTW Canada and the rest of the world have July 4th on their calendar but we have Independence Day.
I don't know what to say except thank you for this reminder that I did not know about the Declaration and it's signers.
Some may say those days will come again. I will stand and not kneel.
The American Revolution was never a sure thing, and there was much dissent in the colonies over it. After England admitted defeat, the new "country" was just a Federation of States, and that experiment did not go well, leading to the Second Constitutional Convention where the Constitution was hammered out with many compromises as rural and urban areas were worried about being controlled by the other. Some have called that convention "The Miracle in Philadelphia." When George Washington stepped down as our First President and John Adams stepped up as the second one, it was the first time the head of a country was changed with no shots, no revolution. It was these early forefathers that set the precedence that, up to now, we have followed faithfully.
Most of us came much later; three of my grandparents came to this country through Ellis Island, however My Grandfather Dewey's family has been here since 1633 and served in both the Revolutionary and Civil wars (and my Father in WWII). My cousin Admiral Dewey helped establish the US as a world power. Until a decade ago I had no idea that I had such a significant family history, yet I was raised in a school system that taught us about our forefathers, and though somewhat new to this country, considered them MY forefathers. I worry that that lesson is not taught to the young people today. By celebrating Independence day, hopefully we can awaken that appreciation of history and of this great country we are fortunate to live in.
Steve you are correct, sometimes I don't think as clearly as I should
David D.: Sometimes I think what we don't teach our children is more important than what we do teach them. I had a list of Presidents since my car was new with their party affiliation at an elementary school and was asked to remove it because there were more Republicans on the list than Democrats.
David, I now understand your interest in steam power!
There's a lot we don't read about in our history books. In my family, Johan Ludwig Kling fought for the colonies against England. His sister was married to a Torrey and when their side lost, they also lost citizenship and property. The king granted them land in Canada. Henrick Kling didn't want to get involved so moved his family to Louisiana which was French territory.
I descended from Johan Ludwig Kling who now has a marker on his grave placed by the D.A.R.
So you see, that people's families were divided by that war and their citizenship was at stake.
Anyway, I am glad that my side of the family became part of the new country, U.S.A.
I suppose you're now going to suggest that Memorial Day has some sort
of deeper meaning besides a long weekend and beer consumption too ?