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American Revolution - how did the Founders survive?

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Fletchette, Jun 12, 2006.

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  1. Fletchette

    Fletchette Member

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    One thing that has me puzzled, as it never seems to be addressed in various history books, is how did the Founders of the American Revolution escape prosecution? The British knew who was behind the unrest, as John Hancock and company wrote him a letter about the subject.

    Why didn't the British simply burn the estates of the Founders to the ground?
     
  2. Hoppy590

    Hoppy590 Member

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    from my understanding they did burn many homes and threaten familys. i couldnt really say why they didnt go further but, war at the time was a gentlemans affair. two armys would meet on the battle ground and slug it out in lines. american militia-men did introduce gurilla warfare, but the majority was still fighting in lines. so maybe the brits played the gentleman and avoided such "uncivilized" means

    obviously they enemys of our past were more reasonable and civilized than the enemys of our present. elsewise the brits would have been beheading and torturing.
     
  3. Diamondback6

    Diamondback6 Member

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    Actually, most of the signers did end up poor or dead IIRC. I think part of the reason many escaped from the Crown's "justice" *snort* was that back then, ID was more difficult to prove/disprove and that it was easy to "go to ground" when necessary, just hide out and overland hike/ride to an AO where you were less notorious if you had to. Plus sympathizers ready to hide them when necessary.

    Just my best guess.
     
  4. pipoman

    pipoman Member

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    I have pondered that too. I think there was a movement for independance which, while not all encompassing, created sympathisers, spys and a working underground network.
     
  5. dmckean44

    dmckean44 Member

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    Five signers were captured by the British as traitors and tortured before they died. Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. Two lost their sons in the war, and another had two sons captured. Seventeen of the 56 fought in the war and nine of them died from wounds or the hardships of the war.
     
  6. PinnedAndRecessed

    PinnedAndRecessed member

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    I have this note in my files:

     
  7. hillbilly

    hillbilly Member

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    Something that gets glossed over in the school textbooks is just how brutal and nasty and violent and bloody and awful the American Revolution really was.

    Look up the sarcastic term "Tarleton's Quarter" for an example.

    Check out info on the prison ships anchored in Boston Harbor.

    It wasn't just a bunch of patriots giving speeches and winnig glory and freedom.

    There was a whole lot of killing and dying and suffering and burning and breaking and oppressing and torturing and hanging.

    hillbilly
     
  8. Brian Williams

    Brian Williams Moderator Emeritus

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    They did not. It should be the Land of the Free because of the Brave.
     
  9. oweno

    oweno Member

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    Whenever a question like this pops up, I like to recommend:

    "A Few Bloody Noses - The Realities and Mythologies of the American Revolution" by Robert Harvey.

    Your library can get it for you, I actually bought my own copy it's so good.

    Owen

    "A few bloody noses" is what King George thought would be all it would take to put down the Revolution - he was wrong. Also, he was not insane at the time, that came much later.
     
  10. gopguy

    gopguy Member

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    The sacrafices of the founders are misunderstood, not appreciated and poorly taught, hence this thread. The public schools should be ashamed.:fire: It truly is sad how few in this country know anything about the founding of the nation. Most of what I know I read on my own and did not learn in grade school or college. Thank goodness for the history channel running their series on the revolution..since most people these days have to be spoon fed by TV this may make a dent..the vast sea of ignorance in the land is disheartening.

    Perhaps one day they will be more than just a bunch of "dead white guys" or derided as a bunch of dead white slave owners.......that one really torks me off.:banghead: :cuss: :fire:
     
  11. Ira Aten

    Ira Aten member

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    Had they known their sufferings and sacrifices of them, and of their families would ultimately result in a country whose current crop of Political Heros would; Bar the excercise of religion in any public place; Bar the right to assembly, along with free speech; Completely mischaracterize the meaning and reasoning behind the right to keep and bear arms; and con us as a People out of the guarantee of public trials overseen by juries, in exchange for a plea bargaining system decided upon solely by a single government employee in cases of repeat child killer/rapists) I doubt seriously if they would have made the same decisions.

    When you even try to type out the names of those Gentlemen, next to the names of our current crop of Political Heros in Washington, it is borders obscenity. They knowingly gave up everything with the exception of their Sacred Honor and hold that still, to this day.

    I find it hard to imagine men like Samuel Adams, Benjamin Franklin, et al, exposing themselves to nineteen year old interns or drunkenly driving off bridges and staggering home drunk leaving a young female intern trapped underneath their carriage to drown, and the voters re-electing them to a public office.

    Can you imagine someone such as Thomas Jefferson stuffing ninety thousand dollars in bribe money in say, his ice box and upon being caught red handed be backed by both his party leaders, and the OPPOSITION PARTY in a demand he be excluded from the search of his PULBIC OFFICE in a Felony matter because he is a member of Congress?

    I doubt very much they would be pleased with sacrificing all they had for a country full of people more interested in who wins some nationwide TV talent competition show than they are in making it mandatory their Political Heros act somewhat better than a bunch of "Animal House" fraternity brothers.
     
  12. gopguy

    gopguy Member

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    Ira, Thank you. I could not have said it better myself. I often think my ancestors who fought in the Revolution would be rolling in their graves if they could see what has happened to the Republic they created.:banghead:
     
  13. TallPine

    TallPine Member

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    Strange how history repeats itself ..... :uhoh: ;)
     
  14. JesseJames

    JesseJames Member

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    This country was unusually blessed with more than its fair share of men of genius at its inception.
    These were men of reflection. They thought DEEP. They would still put the majority of modern day politicians to shame.
    They put their lives on the line. Put it ALL on the line.

    I am rather saddened to some extent that we have come from "I regret that I have but one life to give for my country!" and "Give me liberty! Or give me death!", to "Dude! Where's my car?".

    Yeah, dumb joke but you get what I mean right?
     
  15. cuervo

    cuervo Member

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  16. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    I don't know I would agree. Given some of the commentary of the founders on religion, I can see where they might be less sympathetic than you think. For example:

    "The Christian priesthood, finding the doctrines of Christ levelled to every understanding and too plain to need explanation, saw, in the mysticisms of Plato, materials with which they might build up an artificial system which might, from its indistinctness, admit everlasting controversy, give employment for their order, and introduce it to profit, power, and pre-eminence. " - Thomas Jefferson, letter to Alexander Smyth Jan 17, 1825

    "I do not believe in the creed professed by the Jewish church, by the Roman church, by the Greek church, by the Turkish church, by the Protestant church, nor by any church that I know of...Each of those churches accuse the other of unbelief; and for my own part, I disbelieve them all." - The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine, pp. 8,9 (Republished 1984, Prometheus Books, Buffalo, NY)

    ""During almost fifteen centuries has the legal establishment of Christianity been on trial. What have been its fruits? More or less in all places, pride and indolence in the Clergy, ignorance and servility in the laity, in both, superstition, bigotry and persecution." - James Madison, letter to William Bradford April 1, 1774

    You mean like the Alien and Sedition Acts that were passed in 1798 and did just that? These laws made our modern day complaints about freedom of speech look tame by comparison.

    The guarantee of a trial by jury is made to the INDIVIDUAL facing trial. Any of the people who ask for a plea bargain have the alternative to request a trial by jury instead. The guarantee of trial is not a guarantee to those of us not on trial that all defendants will face a jury trial and it never has been. As to plea bargaining, it is mostly a 19th century invention that has its roots in American law around the time of the founding fathers.

    Actually Franklin had quite a reputation with the ladies even after marriage and I am sure that the guy who wrote "Beer is proof God loves us and wants us to be happy" probably has a few drunken espisodes to his credit, even if they haven't sunk to Teddy Kennedy levels. Franklin wasn't alone among the founders either...

    We pretty much agree here. I doubt that any of them despite their faults would be impressed to see the degree of apathy the citizens of the United States have developed with regard to their own government. It amazes me to see higher voter turnout for elections where voting meant stopping work (no pay), riding for several days on a horse to the county seat and staying in an inn for a few days (expense) just to exercise the right.

    Despite all that, the founding fathers were men just like the rest of us and there were flaws, scandals, and events that we have largely forgotten.
    __________________
     
  17. The Dan in Black

    The Dan in Black Member

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  18. Fletchette

    Fletchette Member

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    Very helpful, and interesting guys. Thanks.

    I wonder why history books (especially those intended for schools) purge all the exciting stuff out of them. I think kids would find history much more interesting if they were told the whole, bloody story rather than simply memorizing a bunch of dates.

    It would also give them a sense of what is important.
     
  19. PinnedAndRecessed

    PinnedAndRecessed member

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    I don't consider snopes to be credible. Granted, they are right sometimes. But I consider it coincidence. Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn, periodically.
     
  20. JohnBT

    JohnBT Member

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    How did they survive? Here's one example. www.ushistory.com/jouett.htm

    "The year was 1781. On the night of June 3, Jack Jouett was sitting outside the Cuckoo Tavern in the town of Louisa, VA when he heard the sounds of riding cavalry. He crept softly to the roadside where he saw Col. Banastre Tarleton with a detatchment of troops, known as the Green Dragoons, riding toward Charlottesville, VA. Jack knew at once whom they meant to capture there. Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry, Benjamin Harrison, and Thomas Nelson, who had all signed the Declaration of Independence and were all members of the Virginia legislature, were together at Monticello having fled from Richmond on the approach of Gen. Charles Cornwallis. Jack knew he had to warn them, and there was no one else to do it.

    He saddled and bridled his bay mare, Sallie, and rode the forty miles from the Cuckoo to Charlottesville. He could not take the only road, for fear of being caught. Instead, he rode across meadows, through thickets, woods and footpaths. There was only the moon to light his way. Branches tore his skin and clothing but his determination kept him going. The troops did not know he had seen them and stopped three times along the way: once to rest their horses, next to burn an American wagon train, and the third time at Castle Hill where two legislators were sleeping. Here, they arrested them in their nightshirts.

    Jouett rode through the night and arrived at Monticello just before dawn. He pounded on the door and warned those inside that Tarleton's men were on the way to capture them. At Monticello that night were Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Nelson Jr., Richard Lee, Benjamin Harrison, Patrick Henry and Edmund Randolph. Before they fled, Jefferson was able to hide the state papers that the British had hoped to find. Tarleton reached Charlottesville two hours later and found his "quarry" gone.

    Jack rode on to his father's inn, the Swan, where other assemblymen were staying. He warned them also, and a few militia rushed to hold the British at the river. Several members of the Assembly were taken to General Stevens, who had been wounded and was too weak to ride. The Jouettes disguised the General in a ragged cloak and helped him mount a nag, while Jack put on a fresh uniform and borrowed his father's fastest horse. When Tarleton saw the bright red coat with epaulets and braid, he thought Jack was an officer of high rank. Jack Jouett led the British on a chase while General Stevens slipped away.

    The legislature, reconvening in Staunton, promptly voted Jouett "an elegant sword and a pair of pistols" in appreciation of his activity and enterprise.

    Jouett moved the following year to Kentucky, married Sallie Robards, was close to President Andrew Jackson, helped Kentucky achieve statehood, served four terms in the state legislature, and prospered as a planter and horse breeder. The horse, Sallie, that carried Jack Jouett on his ride, became the ancestor of a long line of thoroughbred race horses."
     
  21. Ira Aten

    Ira Aten member

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    Quote from Bart:
    "Actually Franklin had quite a reputation with the ladies even after marriage and I am sure that the guy who wrote "Beer is proof God loves us and wants us to be happy" probably has a few drunken espisodes to his credit, even if they haven't sunk to Teddy Kennedy levels."


    How totally ridiculous an analogy,

    To compare a man like Benjamin Franklin (who as you describe as being quite a lady's man) with some low life clown inserting a cigar into a nineteen year old intern and getting blow jobs from her while supposedly working in the Oval Office of the White House while men were dying in Somalia, is borderline lunacy.

    But even more ludicrous, is your comparison of Benjamin Franlin writing down the phrase "Beer is proof that god loves us and wants us to be happy" with Ted Kennedy leaving a woman drowned in his car for seventeen hours and having the audacity to claim he is a "champion of womans rights" is absolutely, without a doubt, one of the most totally intellectually vapid statements I have ever seen delivered in the English language.
     
  22. Bartholomew Roberts

    Bartholomew Roberts Moderator Emeritus

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    Well, that is one way to interpret it, Ira. It is certainly not the way I meant it to be interpreted or the way I anticipated it would be read; but since you seem to have a talent for reading things the way you want I'll leave it at that.
     
  23. kludge

    kludge Member

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    Couldn't have said it better myself, the founders were studious, knew history, knew about governments, politics, monetary systems, taxation, etc. They warned against political parties, standing armies, private banks controlling the supply of money, and on and on, and today it seems all their wisdom based on studying history for centuies has been tossed in favor of the mess we have now.

    Have we sold our birthright for a mess of pottage?
     
  24. Tommygunn

    Tommygunn Member

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    How did the Founders Survive?

    Well, not to be too obvious, but they "survived" by winning the war....:what:
     
  25. Tory

    Tory member

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    Internet drivel

    P&R declares:

    As opposed to posting old (1999) and disproven drivel devoid of substantiation? :scrutiny:

    I have alwasy found Snopes to be an excellent and efficient means of debunking the "pass this on to everyone you know" nonsense mindlessly forwarding by the credulous. Please cite ANY documented example of Snopes posting misinformation.
     
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