Saturday, June 22, 2013

Visit History: Minute Man Natl. Historical Park

I love when friends come to town because I am motivated to do something. And this something was a visit to Minute Man National Historical Park in Concord, Massachusetts. I have been to Concord once before, on a quick trip to take pictures in front of the Little Women house. I avoided anything having to do with the Revolutionary War. The thought of visiting an open field where "the shot heard round the world" happened to start the war just seemed...boooooringggg.

But I was totally freakin wrong. The park is over five miles long with Battle Road Trail connecting the different landmarks. Sites along the trail include a restored colonial landscape, the site where Paul Revere was captured during his midnight ride, the Hartwell Tavern (an old inn and house, not a functioning tavern (sadface)) and lastly, the Old North Bridge. I only made it to the Old North Bridge because of an incoming thunderstorm/no motivation to walk/SNAKES. The bridge is where it all happened anyways.



There are enough plaques and statues to distract you from it being ultimately a field with a bridge. The Old North Bridge is a replica of the original, where colonial commanders ordered militia men to fire back at the British troops, officially starting the Revolutionary War.



The statue of the Minute Man was sculpted by David Chester French, the same man who is responsible for Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial, Washington D.C. Minutemen were generally younger, highly mobile, and a rapidly deployed force of militia men. They allowed the colonies to respond immediately to threats, hence the name.

I wanted to see more around Concord before the storm rolled in but it didn't happen. Notably: Walden Pond (where Thoreau wrote his novel of the same name), Thoreau's cabin on the pond, Sleepy Hollow cemetery (resting place of Thoreau, Emerson, Alcott and Hawthorne) and a tour of Orchard House. So I instead settled for some good ole' indoor fun at the Colonial Inn's Village Forge Tavern. (dranks)



Concord Hymn
by Ralph Waldo Emerson

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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