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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The World Turned Upside Down

“Listen to me and you shall hear, news hath not been this thousand year:

Since Herod, Caesar, and many more, you never heard the like before.

Holy-dayes are despis'd, new fashions are devis'd.

Old Christmas is kicked out of Tow

Yet let's be content, and the times lament, you see the world turn'd upside down.”

 Oliver Cromwell had banned the old Christmas celebrations at the end of the English Civil War as being too frivolous. The opening lines of a then popular ditty set the tone of protest against this religious fanaticism. Later, some say, the same song was played at another type of ceremony in a small, almost destroyed town, in the New World - Yorktown Virginia.
A British army was trapped and bombarded to distraction by American and French land and naval forces. In spite of victory after victory by the British, the Americans would not give up their struggle for Independence. Now the time had come for the Redcoat army to pay the piper.

A young man had been Washington's aide de camp for years. He yearned to lead men into battle. Finally he got his chance. Here pictured Alexander Hamilton Troutbirder leads the charge against British redoubt #10 in a daring nighttime attack. (Photo by Mrs. T.)

Unable to avoid destruction or escape, Lord Cornwallis surrendered his army. Except for Canada, the sun sets on the British Empire in North America.


It is said when the surrender ceremony takes place, the British army band plays an old song called The World Turned Upside Down. Don't just read history. Live it! Well..... at least in your imagination.

A favorite book of Troutbirders is: - Washington: The Indispensable Man by James Thomas Flexner. It is one of the greatest biographies in American literature.


Anvilcloud said...

They couldn't have done it without you.

Zhoen said...

Washington really was quite extraordinary, although here in the states, it's not widely appreciated, he fades into the distant woodwork.