Happy 4th of July my friends! I hope everyone has an amazing day with family and friends. I’m just gonna give you guys a small history of our great nation and hopefully provide some inspiration.
Jamestown was established May 14th, 1607. This first shipment of settlers looking to prosper, were totally destroyed. The initial shipload consisted of about half useful people that were tradesmen. The other half were the elite men of money. These men offered nothing helpful and likely hastened the deaths of many.
After 8 months, 60 of the original 214 pioneers remained alive. This is an attrition rate that would certainly deter most modern people. The famous John Smith remained and built the colony up to a population of 500. However he left in 1609 and disaster struck again.
The very first winter following Smith’s departure destroyed the fledgling colony. Again they were reduced to about 60 living men of 500. An attrition rate twice that of the original ship. An extreme winter, lack of supplies, and angry Algonquian neighbors, led to massive death.
After the marriage of Pocahontas and John Rolfe it seems that things became more peaceful among the Europeans and the natives.
The moment in which we are told America really began was in 1619. In this year a Dutch trade ship pulled in to harbor and exchanged a load of black indentured servants for food. Yes indentured servants who traded labor for food and shelter and eventual freedom. Yes, indentured servants, slavery was not legal in 1619. Racial slavery wasn’t common until 1680. 60 Years or so with the same status of Irish indentured servants.
Pennsylvania was named and founded by William Penn. A fella that was persecuted for his Quaker beliefs in England. In 1682 He established the colony and made it the refuge for quakers from Germany, Holland, Scandinavia, and Great Britain.
Penn was super successful in selling the colony as being in rich farmland with absolute religious freedom. He quickly added to the colonies population, a rich and peculiar people. He also got along with the local tribal people and had a hand in developing the idea of American autonomy.
We couldn’t skip the pilgrims and consider it a respectable summary of the colonies. It’s these cats that we learned so much about in grade school. They founded Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620. As with Jamestown, the original settlers were almost completely destroyed by the first winter. After trying out a proto-communist type governance and nearly starving to death from food shortage. Private property was made legal and once it was made clear, no work, no food, the colony flourished.
Maryland has yet another awesome history. Being the private property of Lord Baltimore depended upon his payments to the crown of gold and silver. The charter was founded in 1634 and the colony was given the namesake of the Lord’s wife, Mary. Thus Maryland.
Maryland made itself a refuge specifically for Catholics but was determined to offer freedom for all religion, Christian religion obviously. In 1648 the colony passed a law protecting the liberty and justice of all those who believe in Jesus Christ.
Fort McHenry was in Baltimore and the naval bombardment of that fort was witnessed by a young lawyer named Francis Scott Key. He watched the assault from the deck of a prison ship holding US patriot POW’s.
He penned our National Anthem with “Oh say can you see…” Heres a post to a video that provides a moving and awesome telling of that story.
This just about brings tears to my eyes no matter how many times I watch it.
Rhode Island has a great history that turns many assumptions on its head. Roger Williams was the founder of that colony. He started off in Boston where his separatist ideas were seen as too radical. Eventually his “crazy” ideas got him banished from Massachusetts.
He had crazy notions that the land should be purchased from Indians instead of taken by force. He wanted separation from church and state. He was also an ardent supporter of independence from England far before it was even considered by most colonists. He purchased land from the Narragansett Indians and called it Rhode Island. It became a refuge for all religions, including Jews.
I could continue but it would turn my article into a book. I will just say this. The English colonies were very unique in their character. They were willing to risk death by any number of awful ways, just for the freedom to do so. Most important, these colonies were slave free for nearly 100 years. They were all well established and had learned how to survive before they began to use slaves to work the farms that took a century to sow.
Revolution. This is a short list of the MVP’s of revolution. In my humble opinion, of course. Again I could turn this into an encyclopedia. This is my attempt at summary.
Patrick Henry – Born May 29, 1736 in Virginia. He was brilliant and a natural leader to his fellow colonists. He made himself famous for a speech in court in 1763. He laid out an eloquent defense of natural rights and the philosophy of self ownership. It’s Patrick who suggested human rights are inalienable and can only be either recognized or violated by the state.
John Jay – Born December 12, 1745 in New York. After serving to bring the colonies together to fight the English he was given serious positions to effect the new nation. He was president of the Constitutional Congress. While I would have been opposite him on the issue, he is the author of at least 5 of the Federalist Papers. Without the Federalist Papers the Constitution and the US Republic, might never had come to be at all.
Thomas Jefferson – Born April 13, 1743, in Virginia. I can’t say enough about Jefferson. He is my absolute hero. This was a great man with an unbelievable presence in all of the major events of early America. Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence at the age of 33. He has been the subject of thousands of books and articles. I will say this, the accomplishments that most pleased Mr Jefferson are engraved on his tombstone. Author of the American Declaration of Independence, Author of Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, and Father of the University of Virginia. He also donated his personal library to replace what the British burnt in 1814.
I had a few more that I wanted to cover but this is getting long. The point of this post is to show the great character and history that makes up early America. We live in a weird time where these great men are considered criminals. They aren’t judged with any bit of fairness or reasonableness. It’s ignorance and hatred that attacks the founding of America today. I want to shine light on the ignorant and destroy the hateful.
This holiday is for America. It is our holiday and we share it with all who appreciate it. All we ask is that you be American in your celebration. Just as everyone gets to be Irish on St Patrick’s Day, all liberty lovers everywhere are free to be American today. Instead of jealously guarding who gets to be a part of our celebration, we open it up to all and encourage everyone to join in the celebration.
Being American is a state of mind. If you love liberty and believe in natural rights, this day is yours. Happy Independence Day! God bless America, and keep her safe.