“Let us then … under God, trust our cause to our swords.” –Samuel Adams
In advance of the anniversary of our Declaration of Independence, allow me to suggest another date that should be observed with equal reverence by all Patriots.
At the dawn of the American Revolution, on the first Patriots’ Day (April 19, 1775), armed citizens formed colonial militias that constituted the frontline of our nation’s defense.
However, with hostilities mounting, on June 14, 1775, the Second Continental Congress authorized the enlistment of some 27,000 colonial riflemen to defend the new nation, establishing the American Continental Army and, a day later, appointed George Washington as its commander in chief.
The 1st Continental Regiment consisted of 10 rifle companies from Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia, and they marched to Boston in support of the New England militia.
Fittingly, on June 14 two years later, the Second Continental Congress adopted the first flag of the United States, with the official entry reading, “Resolved that the flag of the thirteen United States be Thirteen stripes alternate red and white: that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”
For the next decade, American Patriots would defend the young nation against what seemed insurmountable odds. They were, of course, led by General Washington, who would, at the close of hostilities and upon the ratification of our Constitution, become our nation’s first president.
Thus, June 14 of this year is both the 235th anniversary of the establishment of the United States Army, and the 233rd anniversary of the adoption of our flag, which has been carried into every battle since.
It was in a second conflict with the British, the War of 1812, that our national flag, flying over Fort McHenry overlooking Baltimore harbor, would give Francis Scott Key the inspiration to pen our National Anthem.
In 1814, James Madison authorized Key and John Stuart Skinner to seek an agreement with the British to secure an exchange of prisoners. Under a flag of truce, Key and Skinner met with Major General Robert Ross and Vice Admiral Alexander Cochrane aboard the HMS Tonnant for negotiations. However, while onboard, Key and Skinner learned of British plans to attack Baltimore, and thus, were held captive.
From his vantage point onboard, Key was able to observe at the end of the first day of that campaign that Fort McHenry’s “storm flag” was still flying into the night. He didn’t know if his fellow Patriots had withstood the assault until, by the dawn’s early light, he saw a much larger American flag (made of fine English wool) had been raised victoriously over the fort.
On that day, Key, an amateur poet, penned “The Defence of Fort McHenry,” later put to music as “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and formally recognized as our National Anthem in 1931.
While the first verse of “The Star-Spangled Banner” is familiar to most Americans, it is the fourth and last verse that speaks most directly to the humbling legacy of American Patriots, who have stood in harm’s way since 1775:
O! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
“In God is our trust,” was shortened to “In God We Trust” and established as our National Motto in 1956 by another Army general who went on to become president, Dwight D. Eisenhower.
That message, “In God We Trust,” is the keystone of liberty, and our nation. But there are those who are endeavoring to remove it, and if they are allowed to succeed, our nation will collapse.
Please join us on one more frontline in defense of liberty.
I invite you to celebrate Army Day, Flag Day and our upcoming Independence Day, in part, by supporting The Patriot Post. From our humble beginnings, The Patriot has grown to become America’s most trusted advocate for First Principles, Essential Liberty and Constitutional Rule of Law.
This measure of success is (to paraphrase Ronald Reagan) not because we’re great communicators, but because we’re communicating great things to the current generation of American Patriots, and because you, in turn, have sustained our effort and helped us grow our ranks.
In 1821, Thomas Jefferson wrote, “[T]he flames kindled on the 4th of July 1776, have spread over too much of the globe to be extinguished by the feeble engines of despotism.”
True today, but those flames must still be tended with vigilance.
In 1833, James Madison’s Supreme Court nominee, Justice Joseph Story, wrote, “Let the American youth never forget, that they possess a noble inheritance, bought by the toils, and sufferings, and blood of their ancestors; and capacity, if wisely improved, and faithfully guarded, of transmitting to their latest posterity all the substantial blessings of life, the peaceful enjoyment of liberty, property, religion, and independence.”
The primary objective of The Patriot Post is to keep the flame of liberty burning bright, and to ensure that the legacy of liberty, won at great sacrifice by generations gone before, is extended to our posterity.
If you have the ability and have not already done so, please take a moment to support The Patriot Post. I humbly encourage you to make a contribution – however large or small. (If you prefer to support us by mail, please use our printable donor form.)
Your investment ensures that The Patriot’s timeless message of liberty, limited government and free enterprise, and our advocacy for national defense and traditional American values, is distributed to a wide forum of readers at all levels of government, academia, the media, and most important, to grassroots Patriots. Your support also provides free subscriptions for thousands of American military personnel and those in ministry and other professions with limited financial means.
That’s a lot of leverage for the future of American liberty!
Fellow Patriots, I thank you for being vigilant and faithful in your selfless support of liberty. We’re humbled to count you among our readers, and it’s my great privilege to serve you as editor of The Patriot Post. May God bless you, and may our great nation continue to be blessed with the liberty He has endowed.
Note: The Patriot Post is not sustained by any political, special interest or parent organization, and we do no online or e-mail advertising for any third party. Our operations and mission are funded by – and depend entirely upon – the voluntary financial support of American Patriots like YOU!
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