For many years, my friend, Lordo and I had a task for July 4th. Just for the record, a friend of Cherdo has to have an "o" at the end of their name...just ask Jacko, Trinnio, Pattio...you get the picture.
Lordo and I would gather all the kids together and work with them for a month in advance in preparation for the July 4th celebrations at a local historical fort. Costumes were required, of course! We spent untold hours looking for tricorn hats each year - there was something so fun about wearing them, that short people lost them in the following months.
The fort was usually windless, hot and packed with celebrants when we arrived. Armed with their lists, each child would step up to the microphone and recite the names of the signers Declaration of Independence by state. Public speaking fears, we attack you when you're young!
One year, Gonzo bravely played patriot melodies from colonial times. It's amazing what you can get kids to do when there is a huge red, white and blue cake involved.
The gracious hosts of the event continue without us; our kids are older and their volunteerism has shifted, but one of my favorite memories will always be the days at the fort.
Quiz Me! Answers:
- This president really was born on the 4th of July (please sing happy birthday to him tomorrow). Calvin Coolidge
- Did you think that the Declaration of Independence was signed on the 4th of July? Wrong-o. How many people actually signed it on that day? 2
- What year did July 4th become a federal holiday? 1941
- Who wrote the Pledge of Allegiance? Francis Bellamy
- What did Yankee Doodle call the feather in his hat? Macaroni!
- Another name for Veteran's Day is... Armistice Day
- There were thirteen original colonies that became states...but what was the 14th? Vermont
- Who was the first president to get married while in office? John Tyler
- Who was the first president who was actually born in America? Martin Van Buren
- One of the signers of the Declaration of Independence was a shoemaker - who was it? Robert Sherman
- Who was the only president who passed away before his parents? John F. Kennedy
- What's the largest city in the United States - in square miles, not population? Juneau [Update! Janie Junebug challenges this information, and as I look further, no one agrees on this...in fact, Juneau might now be third in Alaska, and Sitka might hold the top stop!!]
- Who was the first president to have been born in a hospital? Jimmy Carter
- Three American presidents died on July 4th - who were they? Thomas Jefferson & John Adams (1826), and James Monroe (1831)
- This president laid the cornerstone for the Washington monument, became sick with cholera later that night and died five days later - who was it? Zachary Taylor
- Why were the stars (representing states) in a circle on the first flag? So no one state would be above another (but, actually, though this was the reason - there's nothing official that states the stars represent the states or that certain stars are specific states. You see, though I hypocritically deny you Google rights for this quiz, I googled by brains out.)
- Who was the first president to appear on television? Franklin Delano Roosevelt
- To show his disdain for ceremony, this president greeted ambassadors in his pajamas. Thomas Jefferson
- His pet parrot had to be removed from his funeral - he was screaming obscenities at the mourners. Zachary Taylor
- Who was the only president elected unanimously? George Washington
Have a happy, fun and safe July 4th!