Archive for the ‘American Revolution’ Category

Massed Fife and Drum Corps – A Deep River July Tradition

July 17, 2011

Reposted from today’s Rocky Hill Historical Society web page:

58th Annual Deep River Ancient Muster-Massed Fife and Drum Corps-July16, 2011

Everyone loves a parade and what can be more appropriate for a parade than a fife and drum corps marching smartly down the street, banners and flags unfurled. Better yet, how about several hundred fifers and drummers in a mass parade through a sleepy Connecticut river town.

That is the scene on the third Saturday of every July when the annual Deep River Ancient Muster, a Connecticut tradition since 1885 convenes. Of this massing of drum corps an excited newspaper reporter, in a contemporary account, exclaimed;

“The noise shook green apples off the trees, moved a frog onto the railroad track, jolted nails out of the shingles in the roofs, and the hens in the poultry yards along the route laid premature eggs in fright.”

Read more of this interesting article from Time magazine: Time Aug 03, 1970

Video Credit: L.E.Agnelli

The Middletown Press printed an article with video by Claire Michalewicz about the muster:

“DEEP RIVER – The sound of drums was hard to miss in Deep River on Saturday, as 60 fife and drum corps marched down Main Street to Devitt Field for the 58th Annual Deep River Ancient Muster. Once there, the corps performed one by one for hours into the evening…The festivities started with a “tattoo” on Friday night, with a smaller group of corps performing on the field. On Saturday morning, all the participating corps lined up on Main Street and marched down the street to Devitt Field. One by one, they participated in “jollification” – stepping out onto the baseball diamond and performing a few short pieces before the judges and audience…”

Video Credit: Claire Michalewicz, Middletown Press

How Well Do You Know Our National Anthem?

June 10, 2010

I was surprised today to learn about the additional verses to “The Star Spangled Banner” written by Francis Scott Key in 1814.  An impromptu, yet stirring, rendition of the seldom sung fourth verse was voiced at a recent Tea Party gathering by former marine Louis ? : (video here)  Amazing!

Here is the text of verse four which we hear in the video:

O! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave

Here’s a photo of sheet music cover.
Lots more history on our National Anthem here (Wikipedia)
Here is an MP3  complete version by Doug Alan Wilcox of Frederick MD.

Alaska Asserts State Sovreignty

July 22, 2009

Be it resolved that the Alaska State Legislature hereby claims sovereignty for the state under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the Constitution of the United States.

–The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people– U.S. Constitution, Tenth Amendment

The above proclamation passed the Alaska legislature yesterday and was signed by outgoing Governor Sarah Palin. The vote: Alaska’s House 37-0 and Senate 40-0. World Net Daily reports today:

Gov. Sarah Palin has signed a joint resolution declaring Alaska’s sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution – and now 36 other states have introduced similar resolutions as part of a growing resistance to the federal government….

…While seven states – Tennessee, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Alaska and Louisiana – have had both houses of their legislatures pass similar decrees, Alaska Gov. Palin and Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen are currently the only governors to have signed their states’ sovereignty resolutions.

Read more about State Sovereignty at Tenth Amendment Center.

Patriot Samuel Adams

Patriot Samuel Adams

I hope Congress, before they adjourn, will take into very serious Consideration the necessary Amendments of the Constitution. Those whom I call the best—the most judicious & disinterested Fœderalists, who wish for the perpetual Union, Liberty & Happiness of the States and their respective Citizens many of them, if not all are anxiously expecting them—They wish to see a Line drawn as clearly as may be, between the federal Powers vested in Congress and the distinct Sovereignty of the several States upon which the private and personal Rights of the Citizens depend. Without such Distinction there will be Danger of the Constitution issuing imperceptibly, and gradually into a Consolidated Government over all the States, which, altho it may be wished for by some, was reprobated in the Idea by the highest Advocates for the Constitution as it stood without amendmts. I am fully persuaded that the People of the United States being in different Climates—of different Education and Manners, and possest of different Habits & Feelings under one consolidated Governmt. can not long remain free, or indeed under any Kind of Governmt. but Despotism.

Samuel Adams in a letter to Elbridge Gerry 1789

Elected Officials Share in Burdens of Constituents? Not!

July 9, 2009

“Nothing so strongly impels a man to regard the interest of his constituents, as the certainty of returning to the general mass of the people, from whence he was taken, where he must participate in their burdens.”

–George Mason, speech in the Virginia Ratifying Convention, June 17, 1788

How sad it is to declare that quotation untrue today. Most of our elected representatives at the federal level never return “to the general mass of the people to participate in the burdens” of their former constituents. The cling desperately to their offices and linger there, often for decades, amassing great wealth and influence so that, when they do leave office, they take with them their generous pensions and their riches. Later they find wonderful opportunities as lobbyists and influence peddlers having never more anything to do with the gullible folks who voted them into office time after time.

I have always opposed term limits, finding such limitations opposed to the will of the people. But, I have reconsidered and feel that now is the time to limit all elected representatives at the federal level to two terms. The present downward spiral of the republic towards bankruptcy and chaos makes the 2010 elections so crucial. We must elect everyday people and stop the influx of lawyers in congress. These folks write legislation that only they can understand assuming that they actually read what has been written. Our framers assumed that our representatives would come from the mass of ordinary people; farmers, workers, teachers, clergy, physicians etc.; that these folks would come to Washington, do the people’s business and go home to “share the burdens” of the populace in their districts and states.

It’s Time to Vote Them Out in 2010 and Bring in Fresh Faces!

VOTE THEM OUT! 2010

Don’t Tread on Me: Happy Birthday America!

July 4, 2009

The Gadsden Flag

In some old dusty attic
Undisturbed for many years
There lies a tattered banner
That is stained with blood and tears
By men who knew that freedom
Must be fought for by the free
And died to save a ragged flag
That said Don’t Tread on Me

Don’t Tread on Me
I’m a rattlesnake with
Diamonds down my back
When other men retreat
That’s just the time that I attack
Because a dream that’s worth defending
Is a dream that’s bound to be
A ragged flag that said
Don’t Tread on Me

Two hundred years of glory
And the glory’s just begun
We may have lost some battles
But these colors never run
We drew the line at Valley Forge
We held at Bunker Hill
The cannon smoke is lifting
I can see that banner still

Don’t Tread on me
I’m a mountain lion
And courage is my name
I tamed a wild country
But I’m wild just the same
And from that rocky Boston harbor
To the California Sea
A ragged flag that said
Don’t Tread on Me

This nation isn’t what we’ve done
It’s what we’ve got to do
Remember that United States
Can only start with you
We better be recalling
What this country’s all about
And rally round that ragged flag
And hear the people shout
Don’t Tread on Me
I’m a grizzly bear
That’s not afraid to bite
I don’t look for trouble
But when trouble comes I fight
Because my daddy taught me freedom
Has no lifetime guarantee
A ragged flag that said
Don’t Tread on Me

The winds of change are blowing
And they’re sure to shake this land
We stood all we can take
And now it’s time to take a stand
Let’s tell the men who make the laws
In Washington D.C.
Unfurl again
That ragged flag that said
Don’t Tread on Me

Don’t Tread on me
I’m an eagle
Who is clawing at the sky
I want that banner waving up
Where eagles dare to fly
And blazing in the sunlight
So that friend and foe can see
A ragged flag that said
Don’t Tread on Me

Don’t Tread on us
We’re Americans
And we were born to lead
Our skin is every color
And our faith is every creed
We are 300 million people
But on one thing we agree
A ragged flag that said
Don’t Tread on Me

Michael O’Donoghue
© 1983 Least Loved Music, BMI

The Gadsden Flag

The Gadsden Flag

The Gadsden Flag History