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Independence Day

Here's a little lesson in American history for y'all to contemplate while you are swilling down some brews and inhaling hotdogs today:

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?

5 signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.

12 had their homes ransacked and burned.

2 lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.

9 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?

24 were lawyers and jurists. 11 were merchants, 9 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 British 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.

George Wythe was murdered by a younger member of his family in a plot to prevent him from working as an abolitionist and freeing slaves.

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.

Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn't.

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.

On the lighterside, I wanted to share with you an old Jib Jab cartoon about the Founding Fathers. However, Slogger will not allow me to integrate video into my blog. (Damn you, Blogwhore!) So, I can only ask you to click here to watch, and play with, this oldie but a goodie.

Remember: Freedom is not free!

Have a safe and, somewhat, sober 4th of July Celebration.

Now, I'm off for some red meat and beer myself, and then I will be enjoying some fireworks down at the beach!

©2005 hpb©creations


At July 03, 2005 7:23 PM, Blogger elvira black said...


Hotdamn, that is some chillin' (and chilling) info. I had no idea--never thought about it--and I have a feeling few Americans have.

Thanks for that awesome backstory.

Love the pix of you and your wife--and your doggie looks so happy. And why not?

As for Jib-Jab--LMAO!

Have a happy!

At July 11, 2005 8:50 PM, Blogger Anastasia Beaverhausen said...

As a shooting enthusist, NRA member, 2nd Amendment proponent and in keeping with the patriotic theme of this post, here is a great quote I'd like to pass on:

"A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun therefore be your constant companion of your walks."
-- Thomas Jefferson to Peter Carr, 1785

Here's where I got that info.


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