Story of Declaring Independence

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Story of Declaring Independence - 10J Sab-lu!i meeting Seow, Assistant. in the A....
10J Sab-lu!i meeting Seow, Assistant. in the A. M. at 7 Powell, at o'clock. Prayer each and in at o'clock, evening, evening Preach-- at P. M. o'clock noon. noon. A. M. A. M. week, week, Car-ToHtowa, P. M. 0 A. M. P. M. P. M. A. M. P. M. A. M. Geo. W. D. T M'Coy O'Harro, Zahm. Stull. James Roberts, J.Evans, Daniel S. Davis, Morgan. Select $3odrji. Our Country's Flag-. Our Country's Flag the Stripes and Stars The flag cf song and story! The banner borne 'mid Freedom's -wars, On many a field of glory; Our Country's Flag its folds float out O'er mainland, sea and river: Then send it forth, that cheering shout, "Our Country's Flag forever 1" Our Country's Flag on every wave, Where e'er a white sail gleameth, Above the fearless, free and brave, That meteor banner streameth; Our Country's Flag it proudly floats, To foes we'll strike it never; Then raise the cry in ringing notes, "Our country's Flag forever!" Shame! shame upon the dastard hand, That Freedom's sons would tether; Shame ! shame on him who'd burst the band, That binds our hearts together; Long may our Country's Flag float out O'er mainland, sea and river, And long may freemen raise the shout, "Our Country's Flag forever!" FOOTPRINTS OF SEVENTY-SIX. The people of the colonies were only rradually brought to the idea of a separation from the mother country. To the very last, many of the leading men were hopeful of a peaceful settlement of the difficulties. Washington was one of these, while Henry and others, of a more impulsive spirit, early predicted and advocated not merely a deliverance from bonds, but a severance of allegiance from England. "A total and final separation from the mother country began, meanwhile, to be publielv discussed. That encountered strenuous opposition, but was everywhere making rapid progress." xsew Hampshire and fcoutlx Carolina, in obedience to the recommendation of Congress "to establish such a form of government" as would ''best produce the happiness of the people, and most effectually secure peace and good order in the provinces," set up governments. On the other hand, the assemblies of Pennsylvania, Xew Jersey and Maryland, were instructing their delegates in Congress to "dissent from, and utterly reject, any proposition, should such be made, that may cause, or lead to separation from our mother country." Events were constantly occurring, however, which powerfully affected the people. "Funmor's ravages in Virginia," says ilil-dreth "and tory insurrections in North Carolina, gave a strong impulse to the idea of independence in the Southern provinces, while the evacuation of Boston greatly strengthened the friends of that measure in the North." The publications of Thomas Paine were arousing the people as much as anything else. They were freely circulated over the land, and even publicly read to the soldiers. We give a -passage from his pamphlet entitled "Common Sense," which appeared early in 1770. "It matters little now," he declares, "what the King of England either say or does. lie hath broken through every moral and human obligation, trampled uature and conscience beneath his feet, and, by a" steady and constitutional spirit of insolence and cruelty, produced for himself a universal hatred. It is now the sentiment of America to provide for herself. Independence is theonlj- Lond that will tie and keep us together. We shall then see our object; and our ears will be legally shut agninst the schemes of an iutriguing as well as cruel enemy." The North Carolina delegates were now authorized to join with the other colonies "in declaring independence," and the Virginia delegates were instructed to propose that the United Colonics be declared "free and independent States." The assemblies of Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut also favored the measure. On the 7th of June, 177G, the subject came up in Congress. Kit-hard Henry Lee, of Virginia, offered a resolution declaring "that the United Colonics are and ought to be free and independent States ; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved." This resolution was debated the next day in Committee of the Whole. It was sustained by Lee, Wythe and "very earnestly by John Admins." The opposition came from Dickinson, of Pennsylvania, Livingston, of New York, and Itut-ledge, of South Carolina. It was objected to "not as bad, but premature." It passed in committee by a vote of seven to six; and in the House, action was postponed until the first of J uby. Meanwhile a committee was appointed to draft a Declaration of Independence. The members were J efferson, John Adams, Franklin, Sherman and "Robert R. Livingston. In regard to the preparation of the paper, Adams gives the following interesting account: "Mr. Jefferson had been now about a year a member of Congress, but had attended to his duty in the House a Very small part of his time ; and when there he had never spoken in public. During the whole time I sat with him in Congress, I never heard him utter three sentences together. "It will naturally be inquired, how it happened that he was appointed on a committee of such importance ? There were more reasons than one. Mr. Jefferson had the reputation of a masterly pen ; he had been chosen delegate lrom Virginia in consequence of a very handsome paper, which he had written for the House of Burgesses, which had given him the character of. a fine writer. Another reason was, that Mr. 11. H. Lee was not beloved by most of his colleagues from Virginia, and Mr. Jefferson was sent up to rival and. supplant him. This could be doue only by the pen, for Mr. Jefferson cculd stand no competition with him, or any one else, in elocution or public debate. The committee had several meetings, in which vere proposed the articles of which the Declaration was to consist, and minutes made of them. The committee then appointed Mr. Jefferson and me to draw them up in form, and clothe them in a proper dress. The sub-committee met and considered the minutes, making such observations on them as then occurred, when Mr. Jefferson desired me to take them to my lodgings and make a draft of them. This I declined, and gave several reasons for doing so. "1st. That he was a Virginian, and I a Massachusettsian. 2d. That he was a Southern man, and I a Northern one. 3d. That I had been so obnoxious for my early and constant zeal in the measure, that any draft of mine would undergo a more severe scrutiny and criticism in Congress than one of his composition. 4th. And lastly (and that would be reason enough if there were no other,) I had a great opinion of the elegance of his pen, and none at all of my own. I therefore insisted that no hesitation should be made on his part. He accordingly took the minutest and in a day or two produced to me the draft." Mr. Jefferson lived in Philadelphia at the house of Mrs. Clymer, on the southwest corner of Seventh and High streets. Here the Declaration of Independence was composed. Some change took place in the position of the delegates, touching their assent to a declaration of independence, during the interval before a report came from the committee. Those from Pennsylvania were left uncontrolled by instructions from the assembly; and those representing New Jersey and Maryland were instructed to vote for the declaration. The committee reported on the 1st of July. In Confmittee of the Whole, the Declaration received the vote of nine colonies the delegates from New York declined voting, as they had no instructions. Delaware was divided; Pennsylvania stood three for, and four against the measure, and South Carolina one for, and three against it. Several important paragraphs in the original draft were stricken out. One of these was some bitter declaration regarding the encouragement of the slave trade by the King. On the final vote, two Pcunsylvauia members absented themselves, giving the vote of that colony in the affirmative. Ca?sar Rodney, of Delaware, was enabled to decide the vote of that province affirmatively, and South Carolina threw her vote the same way. The Journal of Congress for the 4th of July, 1770, reads thus : "Agreeably to the order of the day, the Congress resolved itself into a comuiitte of the Whole to take into their further consideration the Declaration; and after some time, the President resumed the chair, and Mr. Harrison reported that the committee have agreed to a Declaration, which they desired him to report. The Declaration being read, was agreed to as follows," etc., etc. Says Hildreth : "It was now ordered to be engrossed on parchment, and was subsequently signed by all the delegates then present, including seeral who were not members at the time of the adoption. These signatures were attached on the 2d of August. The only member who did not sign it was Dickerson, the Pennsylvania delegate. "The domineering spirit of of the British ministry and nation, on the one hand," remarks the historian, "the ardor of resistance to the exercise by the mother country of the taxing power on the other, brought to a focus by the attempt to coerce Massachusetts, and kindled into a blaze by the Lexiugton fight, had precipitated a contest, tho length, thn sacrifices, the labors, the costs of which, none at that time at all foresaw. The ministry hoped to awe the colonies into speedy submission. The colonial leaders looking only at the bright side of their prospects, flattered themselves that one or two campaigns would finish the war; and whether the connections with Great Britain continued or not, would secure on a firm foundation the rights of the colonies." In the steeple of the State House, in Philadelphia was a bell, which is still preserved as a most interesting relic of the Revolution. It was recast in this country in 1753, of one imported from England, and which cracked upon its first ringing. It bore the singularly appropriate inscription : "Proclaim liberty throughout the land, unto all the inhabitants thereof." The earliest knowledge of the. adoption of the Declaration of Independence was conveyed to the multitude congregated about the State House by the soft and joyful notes of this bell, thus early dedicated to the cause of freedom. It was the moruingthat the gray-haired bell ringer ascended to his place. He was an earnest patriot, and hoped that day to ring out from his old bell the tidings of declared Independence. With him, to the State House, came an intelligent looking, blue-eyed boy. This was hi3 grandson. Reaching the steeple, both were for sometime occupied with the lovely scenes of the city and country, which stretched before them. Looking down, however, the boy noticed the crowd already collecting in the vicinity. "Grandpa," he said, "what is to-day?" ''To day," replied the aged man, as he struggled with suddenly aroused emotion. "To-day my boy, I pray, with all mj soul may be the birthday of a nation." "Will the cannons fire V "Ay, they will thunder as they never did before in America." "And will you ring the bell ?" "Will 1 ring it?" cried the old man. "Yes, I will ring it, until tho despot across the sea shall tremble upon his throne." "May I help?" "God bless you, my boy !" exclaimed the grandfather, embracing the child. "Certainly you may." The bell-ringer accordingly arranged that the boy should wait at the door of the chamber in which Congress was assembled and receiving notice of the adoption of the Declaration, was to communicate the fact, so that the bell could be instantly rung. The boy fairly danced about with delight as the plan was explained to him. lie attached much importance to the position of hi3 grandfather as bell-ringer; and he uowconipreheadedthat some great event was likely to occur. "I will not stir from the door, grandpa, he no, not one inch." "Not until they tell you America is declared free. Thus impressed, and with a proud air, the boy descended to the lower part of the building. A little sentinel, he stood composed and patient in the door of the Congressional Chamber, intent to do his duty. We pass within the portals. The debate on the grave question of the hour is progressing. Every face is serious, and the solemuiry of the sceue is such that it seems almost a sad one. Every word is well considered before it is uttered ; the ejes flash and the voices tremble with feeling, but never with fear. There is Hancock, already proclaimed by the minions of the king as a rebel beyond the pale of mercy. But he sits here stern, inflexible, and unfaltering in his devotion to liberty. The great spirit was upon him, such as induced the remark, when signing the Declaration of Independence : "There, John Bull can read that name without spectacles. Now, let him double his reward." Observe John Adams ; he Catches every countenance, he does not lose a single syllable of the debates, he can be satisfied with nothing short of Independence. There is Jeffer-pon ; he is not disturbed, because alterations are made in his paper ; for he finds that, in the main,hi3 Declaration of Grievances will be endorsed perhaps ambition fame. And there, speaking, is Richard Henry Lee; he rises to lofty flights of eloquence ; he thunders against the tyranny of the mother country, and sends a thrill through the assemblage as he pictures the future of free America. Venerable and calm sits Benjamin Franklin ; no oue knows better than himself the mighty consequences depending upon these deliberations. But he is ready to defy the wrath of crown and parliament. There is the talented and patriotic Rutledge. He thinks New England and Virginia too hasty. Justice may yet be done. But he is with them in sentiments, heart and arm. Mc-nT.haj the boy kept his post. 25, 1861. Hours passed, and 3Tet he did not allow himself to think that he was growing tired. ' He only thought how happy he should make his grandfather when he carried the news up to the steeple. The old man was becoming very anxious. He listened for the footsteps of the boy, but they came not. He began to fear that the bell must remain silent after all. "Will they do it ?" he questioned to himself. "Will they do it ?" He looked down upon the great throng belong, and saw the sea of upturned faces of the people awaiting the signal of the bell. Would that he could strike it. "Proclaim liberty throughour all the land," he repeated, reading, as he so often did, the inscription on the bell "unto all the inhabitants thereof. God knows I stand ready." He walked back and forth : he gazed from the window he shook his head despondiugly to the crowd. "They will never do it I" he murmured, "they will never do it !" The multitude, that day, exhibited some peculiarities. Although vast in numbers, still there was no noise or disorder. They stood packed about the doors of the State House, and in groups, conversing ; but with serious countenances and in low tones. They listened and listened for the bell. Turning their gaze upward, they saw the aged bell-ringer as he shook his head discouracrinjlv. "The hours roll oa !" said one. "There must be strong opposition !" remarked a second. "Such a declaration should -not be hasty!" urged an elderly man. "Well, I'm for independence !" cried a young person. "Independence I" "Independence !" This thrilling, stirring word was repeated from mouth to mouth. They pronounced it like a defiance and a vow. The Declaration of Independence had now been reported from the committee to the House. The Secretary read it, in the midst of the deepest attention and silence on thepart of the delegates. They bent forward to catch every word, for every word had a meaning full of import. They were creating a nation they were assailing a king and his government. A panting, heated man entered the chamber. As he glided with an almost noiseless tread to his seat, the Adamses and other champions of the measure welcomed him with a smile of satisfaction. The new comer was Ca?sar Rodney, of Delaware. His arrival would give the vote of that province for the Declaration. Mr. Dickinson and another delegate from Pennsylvania were away, and this vote was also secured. The friends of liberty were already exultant. It was two o'clock in the afternoon when the final vote was taken. An impressive stillness prevailed as the secretary announced the adoption of the Declaration by the vote of every colonr. There was no outburst of feeling; but there were many who found tears of joy trickling down their cheeks. America was solemnly declared free. But the blue-eyed boy has gone speeding to the steeple. He is in pain before he has accomplished half the distance; but although he reels he will not stop. Upward he climbs. lie catches for breath to deliver the intelligence. His grandfather hears him coming and springs to the bell. "Ring! ring!" exclaimed the boy entering aiid falliug from exhaustion. "God be praised !" shouted the old bell-ringer. Seizing the iron tongue of the bell, the old man swung it against the speaking metal. The sound rose clear and joyous to Che awaiting multitude. Louder and louder rang the bell, stronger and strouger came the shouts of the people, and then the booming of many cannon. For more than two hours the bell continued to ring. Its peals were wafted over the city, and were auswered by the throbbing of the thousands upon thousands of patriotic hearts. In the evening there were bonfires and an illumination. On the 8th of the mouth there was' a formal celebration of the event. On this occasion, the king's arms in the courtroom iu the State House were torn down and burned in the street. There was a great celebration in Boston on the 17th. Indeed, in every part of the land liberty held high carnival. Washington cause 1 the Declaration of Independence to be read at the head of each brigade of the army. JftaT" Parson Brownlow receutly declared in relation to the Union men of Eastern Tennessee: "We intend to fight the secessionists until hell freezes ever, and then fiht them ca tb.3 iceor any other 1 inaa.?' To tlie Young- Men. Whatever may be jour choice, young man, of future occupation whatever calling or profession you may select there is certainly none more honorable than that of the Farmer. The patriarch of the field, as he sits besides his cottage door after the daily toil is over, feels an inward calm never known in the halls of pride. His labor yields him unpurchasable health and repose. I have observed, for several years past, the visible tokens which appear in all directions of a growing disposition to avoid agricultural pursuits, and to rush into some of the overcrowded professions ; because a corrupt and debasing fashion has thrown around them the tinsel of imaginary respectability. IleiiCe. the farmer, instead of preparing his child to follow in the path of usefulness he himself has trod, educates hizj for a sloth. Labor is considered vulgar; to work is ungentecl. The jackplaue is less respectable than the lawyer's green bag; the plow is less dignified than the yardstick. What a fatal delusion! How melancholy is this evil, which, unless checked by a wholesome reform iu public opinion, will eventually cover our country with wreck and ruin. The state of things is striking at the very foundation of our national greatness, for it is upon agriculture that we mainly depend for prosperity as a nation, and our greatest calamity will fall upon us when it sinks into disrepute, Again, what other pursuit offers so sure a guarantee of an honest independence, so comfortable a support for a dependent family? Where else can we look but to the productions of the soil for safety of investment and for ample return ? In commercial operations all is chance and uncertainty, change and fluctuation, rise and fall, fu the learned professions, scarce one in ten realizes his incidental expenses. How, then, are we to account for this fatal misdirection of public opinion ? The cultivators of tho soil are the most valuable citizens. They are the most independent and the most virtuous, and are tied to our country and wedded to its interests by the most lasting bonds. Ridqway. How to Distinguish the Rank or Officers. 'By observing the shoulder straps worn by officers of the army, their rank can be readily ascertained. A major general is distinguished by two silver stars on his shoulder straps; a brigadier general has but one star; a colonel has a silver embroidered spread eagle; a lieutenant colonel has a silver embroidered leaf; a captain is known by two gold embroidered bars; a first lieutenant has but one gold bar on the strap; a second lieutenant none at all. The cloth of the strap is as follows: staff officers, dark blue; artillery, scarlet; infantry, light (or sky) blue ; riflemen, medium (or emerald) green; cavalry, orange color. What is ax Ambulance? An ambulance is a light carriage, the body being mounted upon two wheels and supported by very elastic, light spriugs. It is a little over six feet in length. There are cots for two inside, with" beds, head pillows, &c. The top is covered with black oil cloth, but the body and running gear are painted red. The ambulance is intended for one horse with a seat for the driver in front, and being very light, though strongly built, can be driven along very rapidly without injury to tho wounded. Prfxocity. We have a little friend by the name of Freddy, who is less than four years old. His sister, who is not quite a year old, was sitting in his father's lap, crying and fretting for her mother who had gone out, when Freddy turned to her and said in the most earnest manner possible : "Therei Alice, you've cried enough ; there's no use frettinir any more; mother's gone away and father don't keep the article you want " Will Preach, Pray, or Fight. A Methodist minister in Ohio, being aux- ' ions to obtain a situatiou as chaplain in s regiment, wrote to the Goveiiior:"I am a Methodist preachar of the North Ohio Conference, am forty-eight years of acre, and will preach, pray, or fight, as occasion requires." 1 A little four year old girl, wbilo repeating the catechism to her mother, was asked. "What did God' create?" Tha child promptly replied, ?4Tbe sun, the moou, the stars ami the $?rijes." KfSjU Ex-Secretary Floyd and the "Floyd gun" are alike in one respect at least. They have both proved themselves capable of going off with a heavy load, BSjy Prcntico .ays that James B. 01 pf Kentucky, a ffourtb-rato mari i ing a firht ratc name:" "V" u.-

Clipped from
  1. The Ebensburg Alleghenian,
  2. 25 Jul 1861, Thu,
  3. Page 1

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  • Story of Declaring Independence

    thompuzzle – 22 Feb 2017

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