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April 18 and April 19, 1775—And the shot heard ’round the world

oldnorthApril 19 is Patriots Day in New England, commemorating the 1775 Battle of Lexington and the Battle of Concord. These were the opening battles between the American colonists and the British soldiers, where the Minutemen stood their ground and faced the might and majesty of the Crown, the most magnificent army in the world.

It started on the night of April 18, when the royal governor of Massachusetts, General Thomas Gage, ordered 700 British soldiers, under Lieutenant Colonel Francis Smith and Marine Major John Pitcairn, to seize the colonists’ military stores in Concord, some 20 miles west of Boston.

But the colonists had devised a plan to warn the militia that the British troops were approaching. As a signal, lights would be hung in the tower of the Old North Church —one lantern if the British were marching in, two lanterns if they were coming in by sea. Then riders would leave for Lexington to warn John Hancock and Samuel Adams, that the British were headed their way.

On the night of April 18, 1775, church sexton Robert Newman hung two lanterns in the steeple to warn Charlestown patriots of the advance of British soldiers, and two riders departed: Paul Revere and William Dawes.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
memorialized Old North Church’s role at the start of the Revolutionary War in his poem, “Paul Revere’s Ride.” Written sixty-five years after the incident, greatly embellished, and not strictly accurate, Longfellow’s poem nevertheless was and continues to be a fine example of narrative poetry. It tells a thrilling story that readers still love. Best read aloud, to young and old alike.

Paul Revere’s Ride
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Listen my children and you shall hear
Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,
On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-five;
Hardly a man is now alive
Who remembers that famous day and year.

He said to his friend, “If the British march
By land or sea from the town to-night,
Hang a lantern aloft in the belfry arch
Of the North Church tower as a signal light,–
One if by land, and two if by sea;
And I on the opposite shore will be,
Ready to ride and spread the alarm
Through every Middlesex village and farm,
For the country folk to be up and to arm.” Continue reading April 18 and April 19, 1775—And the shot heard ’round the world

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The Daily Flag News—March 4, 2008

Eagle Scout projects are favorite stories to highlight here at Flags Bay. This story is interesting because of the involvement of other organizations in the project. Matthew Johnson has already lined up the money, volunteers and is working on the location for a little new construction.

Battle Creek Enquirer – www.battlecreekenquirer.com – Battle Creek, Mich.
matthewjohnson_eaglescoutproject.jpgHastings, Mich. – As part of The 2008 Leadership Barry County class, members are required to develop and work on a community service project. This project must benefit the local Barry County community, while providing an experience that will build leadership skills. The Leadership Class of 2008 has selected a project in which they will partner with a local Boy Scout, Matthew Johnson (age 12), to build a “Charity House” as a part of Matt’s endeavor to become an Eagle Scout.

The “Charity House” is an actual shed-sized “house” that will be used for the collection of returnable cans and bottles that will be donated to a local charity on a monthly cycle.

The 45-star flag was the U.S. flag around the turn of the 20th century. Looking at the photo, this one-hundred year old flag is in good shape and will enjoy its new home in the courthouse.

45 star flag finds new home in courthouse
farmington_45-star.jpgFARMINGTON — A little piece of history has found a permanent home in Davis County. At the Davis County Commission’s Feb. 26 meeting, members of the American Legion’s Farmington Post 27 presented the commissioners with a 45-star flag made soon after President Grover Cleveland signed a proclamation admitting Utah into the union as the 45th state.

“This is a special flag, and we thought long and hard about what to do with it,” said William Huber, commander of Post 27. “The courthouse has been designated a war memorial, so we thought this would be a good place for it.”

The Old North Church is updating some of its technology and I’m not sure how I feel about it. Don’t get me wrong, I love technology, but LED lights in the historic church? I’ll have to think about it.

My Way News – Old North Church Goes Modern With LEDs
oldnorthchurchtower.jpgBOSTON (AP) – One LED if by land, and two if by sea?

The Old North Church, a beacon for Paul Revere’s famous warning of the movement of British forces, and a symbol of the American Revolution, has gone high-tech with the installation of light-emitting diodes, or LEDs.

The energy-efficient lights illuminate ceiling vaults inside the church, whose steeple was used to display two lanterns as a signal about British troop movements on April 18, 1775 – the night described in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s famous poem, which included the line: “One if by land, and two if by sea.”