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Day One!

Hello Friends!

We are so excited to be getting together for another year of Camp Freedom! We had a great first day to kick it off!

Henry Knox talked to the kids about the events that led up to the Revolutionary war including the formation of the Son's of Liberty and The Boston Massacre, where 5 civillians were killed after a scuffle with some Brittish soldiers. He also talked about the Boston Tea Party and the attempt the British made to take away the Colonists guns, which lead to The Battle of Concord and Lexington and the "Shot Heard Round the World" which marked the start of the Revolutionary War.

We were also visited by Lydia Darraugh, who told the kids about the help she was in thwarting a surprise attack by the british on american soldiers. At the time of the planned attack, Lydia's home was selected as a place to quarter soldiers. Lydia overheard the plans of the surprise attack and risked her life and her families lives to get the information to George Washington. When the British arrived, the colonists were ready for them. The

officers were furious and tried to find out who had leaked the information, but Lydia was never discovered.

William Bradford shared about becoming a Puritan at age 12. Later on, seeking religious liberty, he and his wife decided to travel to America. Sadly, his wife fell overboard and drowned during the journey. When they arrived at Plymouth, they attempted to set up a town and build a community. John Carver was the Governor at the time and he instituted Religious Communism. William shared about the flaws with this type of government. He said that it was 3 years of the worst living conditions imaginable. People were starving and most of the people were suffering greatly. After John Carver died, William ran for Governor and won. He then ended communism and established a self-governing society.

We also saw George Washington, who taught about the Battle of Trenton and the crossing of the Delaware. The kids got to walk through some ice cold water to help them think of how cold it must have been for these soldiers who crossed over on Christmas night to surprise the Hessians. This is a favortite activity every year. The kids always enjoy it!

During craft time the kids learned about John McCrae, who witnessed the tragedy of war. They were taught about the sacrifice that men and women have made and still make in order to preserve the freedoms that we enjoy. The kids were encouraged to look for members of our armed forces and to make sure and not only thank them for their service, but to thank them for our Freedom. Below you can learn about John McCrae and read his poem, "In Flander's Fields."

As the first shots of World War I were fired in the summer of 1914, Canada, as a member of the British Empire, became involved in the fight as well. McCrae was appointed brigade-surgeon to the First Brigade of the Canadian Field Artillery and was stationed in the trenches near Ypres, Belgium, in an area known as Flanders. In the midst of the tragic warfare, McCrae’s friend, twenty-two-year-old Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, was killed by artillery fire and buried in a makeshift grave. The following day, McCrae, returned to the battlefield. Where the night before was filled with the sound of explosions and artillery fire, he now sat listening to the birds chirping as he looked out over the field of makeshift graves blooming with wild poppies. Filled with emotion, he pulled out his pad and penned his famous poem “In Flanders Fields,”

In Flanders Fields

John McCrae

In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,   

That mark our place; and in the sky   

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,   

Loved and were loved, and now we lie       

In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe: 

To you from failing hands we throw   

The torch; be yours to hold it high.    

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow       

In Flanders fields.

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