July 11, 1798: Rebirth of the Marine Corps

        The Continental Marine Corps was disbanded after American victory in the Revolutionary War.  Predation by Barbary corsairs, and conflicts with the French Revolutionary Navy caused Congress to re-establish both the Navy and the Marine Corps.  On

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Quotes Suitable For Framing: John Adams

    Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. It is in vain to say that democracy is less vain, less proud, less selfish,

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Jefferson on the History of the American Revolution

On August 10, 1815, Thomas Jefferson set pen to paper to respond to John Adams’ letter to him of July 30, 1815.  Go here to read that letter.  Jefferson was no more optimistic than Adams that a true history of

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John Adams on the History of the American Revolution

John Adams often groused that the true history of the American Revolution would never be written.  Considering this, it is somewhat surprising that he did not undertake the task himself.  He had ample time after his Presidency, and his lively

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John Adams: Washington’s Ten Talents

“The History of our Revolution will be one continued lye [sic] from one end to the other. The essence of the whole will be that Dr. Franklin’s electric rod smote the earth and out sprang General Washington. Then Franklin electrified

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Quotes Suitable for Framing: John Adams

Statesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is religion and morality alone, which can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free constitution is pure virtue; and if

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Finished Peace, Unfinished Peace Portrait

The negotiations that led to the Treaty of Paris which ended the Revolutionary War, were long, contentious and complicated, involving not merely the peace treaty between Great Britain and the United States, but also separate treaties between Great Britain and France,

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It Crashed Before The Declaration Was Saved!

A cute video imagining the Declaration of Independence being drafted on Microsoft Word. John Adams on August 6, 1822 in a letter to Timothy Pickering who had inquired as to how the Declaration came to be drafted responded as follows:

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For Old, Unhappy, Far-Off Things, and Battles Long

Will no one tell me what she sings?— Perhaps the plaintive numbers flow For old, unhappy, far-off things, And battles long ago: Or is it some more humble lay, Familiar matter of to-day? Some natural sorrow, loss, or pain, That

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His Rotundity

To many Americans it often seems that Congress wastes an inordinate amount of time debating on trivialities.  It is at least an old tradition.  The Senate spent a month in 1789 debating what the title of the President should be.  Washington during

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Rational Evil

Dennis Prager , in this episode of his Prager University series of videos, takes on an ever popular heresy:  evil is irrational.  This heresy is popular for any number of reasons but doubtless it all boils down to the belief, completely

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John Adams: Prophet?

Suppose a nation, rich and poor, high and low, ten millions in number, all assembled together; not more than one or two millions will have lands, houses, or any personal property; if we take into the account the women and

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Attack Ads 1796

Students at Williams College this year are taking part in an experimental course on the history of American presidents from Washington and Lincoln by producing political attack ads.  Go here for a report on this novel way of learning about

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The Veepstakes: Who Cares?

The other day Pat Archbold wrote a post lamenting that Condoleeza Rice may be positioning herself for a run at the Vice Presidential nomination.  Though I agree with Patrick that she would be an unacceptable choice, it’s probably nothing to

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Jack Webb Wishes A Belated 236th Happy Birthday to the Corps

        On November 10, 1775 the Continental Congress passed this resolution authored by John Adams: “Resolved, That two battalions of Marines be raised consisting of one colonel, two lieutenant-colonels, two majors, and other officers, as usual in

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Remember

Something for the weekend.  Scenes from the American Revolution set to the music of the film National Treaure.  This Fourth of July weekend we should recall our heritage, especially the eight long years of war it took to achieve American independence. 

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July 2, 1776: The Vote

From the musical 1776, a heavily dramatized version of the vote to declare American independence on July 2, 1776.  The scene is effective but historically false.   James Wilson did not dither about his vote, but was a firm vote for

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John Trumbull: Painting the Revolution

In an age before photography, America was fortunate to have a painter of the skill of John Trumbull to give us a visual narrative of those stirring days and portraits of so many of the participants.  A veteran of the

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It’s On: Jefferson v. Adams!

One of the more interesting aspects of the conflict between Jefferson and Adams is how little difference it made in the long run in American history, except, perhaps, for an early establishment of the two party tradition.  For all Jefferson’s partiality to

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John Adams’ Finest Hour

The HBO miniseries John Adams brilliantly recreates, in the above video, what has always struck me as John Adams’ finest hour.  Adams, an ardent patriot, was sickened by the carnage caused by British soldiers when they fired into a crowd

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Happy 235th Birthday to the Corps

On November 10, 1775 the Continental Congress passed this resolution authored by John Adams: “Resolved, That two battalions of Marines be raised consisting of one colonel, two lieutenant-colonels, two majors, and other officers, as usual in other regiments; that they

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Negative Politics 1800 Style

Reason TV reminds us that there is nothing new in regard to negative politics.  The most vitriolic election in US history was probably, as the above video indicates,  the election of 1800 between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. The above video is

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July 4, 1826

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams died on July 4, 1826, fifty years to the day from the adoption of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776.  Jefferson died before Adams, and therefore Adams was in

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John Adams, Sedition and the Obama Administration

The greatest blunder of the John Adams administration was the Sedition Act.  It inflamed his adversaries and gave color to their accusations that Adams was a tyrant.  It is stunning that the same men who had fought in the Revolution

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John Adams and the Church of Rome

John Adams, second President of these United States, was a man of very firm convictions.   Once he decided to support a cause, most notably American independence, nothing on this Earth could convince him to change his mind.  In regard to religion

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