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EBarnacle1 Happy 4th of July (79* d) RE: Happy 4th of July 05 Jul 03

A friend passed this along to me. It seems to fit this thread.

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the
Declaration of Independence? Five signers were captured by the British
as traitors, and tortured before they died. Twelve had their homes
ransacked and burned. Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary
Army; another had two sons captured. Nine of the 56 fought and died from
wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War. They signed and they
pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor. What kind
of men were they? Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were
merchants, nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means,
well educated, but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing
full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured. Carter
Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his Ships swept
from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to
pay his debts, and died in rags. Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the
British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He
served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding.
His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward..
Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer,
Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton. At the battle of
Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis
had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged
General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and
Nelson died bankrupt. Francis Lewis had his home and properties
destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.
John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13
children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid
to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning
home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. Some of us take
these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn't. So, take a few
minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday and silently thank these
patriots. It's not much to ask for the price they paid.
Remember: freedom is never free!
Fourth of July has more to it than beer, picnics, and baseball games..

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