Thursday, April 19, 2012

BY The Rude Bridge That Arched The Flood

While I might be accused of being an insurrectionist for remembering that today is the 237th anniversary of the stand that our forefathers took at the Lexington Green and the Concord Bridge, I think it is worth remembering their stand and the ultimate sacrifice paid by militiamen of Massachusetts.

One of the better ways of remembering them is to participate in the Appleseed Project of the Revolutionary War Veterans Association. For those that are unfamiliar with the Appleseed Project, it is dedicated to teaching both riflery and history. According to those who have participated such as Bob Owens and Sean Sorrentino, the experience is well worth the effort. As Bob notes, it is "affordable, enjoyable and empowering."

To learn more about the Revolutionary War Veterans Association and the Appleseed Project, go here.

I saw a couple of their billboards in Illinois while attending the NRA Annual Meeting last week. One was at the base of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Bridge and was co-sponsored by ISRA. The other was on Interstate 57 near Rend Lake. It was a pleasure to see both of them in a state which seeks to put up as many roadblocks to lawful firearm ownership as does Illinois.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, philosopher and writer, commemorated the event with his poem Concord Hymn. Unlike many modern day intellectuals, Emerson was not ashamed to show his patriotism. The poem was first read on July 4th, 1837 to mark the erection of the Concord Monument.
By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world.

The foe long since in silence slept;
Alike the conqueror silent sleeps;
And Time the ruined bridge has swept
Down the dark stream which seaward creeps.

On this green bank, by this soft stream,
We set to-day a votive stone;
That memory may their deed redeem,
When, like our sires, our sons are gone.

Spirit, that made those heroes dare
To die, and leave their children free,
Bid Time and Nature gently spare
The shaft we raise to them and thee.

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