Sunday, April 20, 2008

A Skirmish on the Green

Yesterday the Budza and my husband went to the Minuteman National Historic Site in Concord, Mass, to watch a reenactment of the Revolutionary War battle of Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775. Budza remarked on how young the drummer-boys were. Because the reenactment was being held in a National Park, no one could fall down dead. Apparently there is a law against playing dead in national parks. Why do I think this might have something to do with anti-war protesters and the Vietnam War? Hmmmm.

It also happened to be the 100th birthday of the Paul Revere House Museum in Boston, and the Boston Globe had a spectacular picture of their show-stopping cake, a towering architectural likeness of the house in genoise and buttercream and what look like a solid chocolate horse and rider out front. If I can find a version to post here, I will.

Funny story about the Paul Revere House. It used to be an additional stop on Boston’s Freedom Trail; admission wasn't included on the Freedom Trail tour, so if you wanted to go in, it was an extra dollar or dollar-fifty. A good friend of mine used to say that she never actually went in to the museum, because she always spent her remaining $1.50 on a cannoli from an Italian bakery in Boston’s North End.

All this mustering got me thinking about books. Of course the classic Johnny Tremain comes to mind, the 1944 Newbury medal winner by Esther Forbes. Nice bio of Forbes here…she was a Worcester, MA, native.

Then there is Robert Lawson’s Ben and Me: An Astonishing Life of Ben Frankling by His Good Mouse Amos (Little Brown, 1939). Lawson also wrote Mr. Revere and I: Being an Account of Certain Episodes in the Career of Paul Revere, Esq. As Recently Revealed by His Horse.

Huge list of both picture books and chapter books on life in Colonial America and the Revolutionary War here on the website of the Grand Rapids Public Library.

Pictures of the 2008 reenactment of the battle of Lexington and Concord used with the kind permission of “Budza” Hazell.

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