Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Lesser Known Truths About the Fourth of July

                                                  Indianapolis fireworks (Livescience)

A divided nation?  How very American of us.

As we commemorate the 236th anniversary of our Declaration of Independence, revisiting our history helps remind us how far we've come — and just what still makes up the American character. For one thing, not all the 18th-century colonialists were keen on this whole independence thing: A good half-million were Loyalists to the British crown, and hung on to their royal connections in places like New York City, Long Island, and northern Georgia through the 1780s.

Fourth of July myths and truths:

— King George III did not write on July 4, 1776: "Dear Diary, Nothing of importance happened today."

—Adams and Jefferson did die July 4, 1826, the Declaration's 50th anniversary. James Monroe died on July 4, 1831, and Calvin Coolidge was born July 4, 1872.

—Paperwork took a lot longer in those days: The Declaration's signing didn't begin until August 2 and finished sometime in November.

—No, Nicolas Cage didn't find a map on the back of the Declaration of Independence, because if he did, he could pay off his debts and go back to doing good movies. The only thing on the back of the parchment is "Original Declaration of Independence  ated 4th July 1776." There are, however, 26 copies (aka Dunlap broadsides) that do exist — all publicly owned saved one.

—Okay, if you really want a conspiracy coda, how's this: The Declaration's signatures are signed according to geography.

"John Hancock, the President of the Congress, was the first to sign the sheet of parchment measuring 24¼ by 29¾ inches. He used a bold signature centered below the text. In accordance with prevailing custom, the other delegates began to sign at the right below the text, their signatures arranged according to the geographic location of the states they represented. New Hampshire, the northernmost state, began the list, and Georgia, the southernmost, ended it." (National Archives)

An Exceprt from an Article By Vera H-C Chan | Yahoo! News 

"For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters.
But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love."

Galatians 5:13 (NLT) 

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