"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
The Haverhill, Mass., library's George Washington statue, a plaster likeness of the first president made using an exact cast of his face, was sold by the city to a New Hampshire antiques dealer for $5 in 1969 and sat for years in a barn before being restored to the library 20 years ago. Historians consider the sculpture one of the most precise likenesses of Washington's face.
"In the ritual world of festive culture," Newman writes, "it was George Washington who 'filled the king-shaped vacuum that followed the overthrow of George III.'"
If Americans had...created a day [July 4th] on which they could gather to affirm allegiance to the new republic, they had also adopted a national hero, and whenever they gathered to feast and drink, they raised their glasses to salute George Washington. The American Revolution created any number of credible heroes, but it was Washington to held the limelight. For while Paine, Jefferson and the angry crowds who tore down Hanoverian crests and symbols had destroyed the images of royalty, popular faith in leaders who embodied popular values did not die so fast. Thus the rites that had been used to honor the Hanoverian monarchs were rehabilitated both for the commemoration of the Fourth of July and in order to pay tribute to America's new "patriot king."
The transition began quickly, and as early as 1779 American Patriots in York, Pennsylvania were singing, "GOD SAVE GREAT GEORGE WASHINGTON! GOD DAMN THE KING," to the tune of "God Save the King"...
On occasion, in direct emulation of the rites honoring British monarchs, some Americans celebrated Washington's birthday. In Williamsburg, for example, two celebratory feasts were held at the Raleigh Tavern in 1779, while in Richmond, the day was celebrated in 1784 "with the usual demonstrations of joy." All over the country at all manner of feasts and festivals, Americans drank to the health of "The Illustrious GEORGE WASHINGTON."