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The Millbrook Independent

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One of America's founding documents tours the country beginning with Alabama
Written by News Desk   
Friday, 28 March 2014 19:22

3-27sons1Mack Clark of the Prattville Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution displays a reproduction of the Compromise Flag, which Stone described as including the British flag on the canton, no stars, and 13 stripes to represent the colonies. Orator Stone is behind Clark.

Photo: Brian Hodge

By BRIAN HODGE - News Editor

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Even self proclaimed history buffs that attended the Millbrook-Area Chamber of Commerce's luncheon last week may have failed to fully appreciate the historical document that was on display there. Orator Bill Stone says school history books fail to spend enough time on the early history of the United States.

The document on display was the fourth and last page of a signed copy of the Articles of Association of 1774, the first attempt at colonial self-governance in the U.S. The Articles of Association were the product of the First Continental Congress which was formed for the sole purpose of implementing a trade boycott with Great Brittan.

3-27sons2Photo: The fourth page of a four-page copy of the Articles of Association of the First Continental Congress. The document predates the Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution. The First Continental Congress was formed to urge Great Britain to repel the Intolerable Acts, which were passed in response to the boston Tea Party. This document includes the signatures of George Washington, Roger Sherman, Peyton Randolph, and Henry Middleton among others.

Photo: Brian Hodge

The copy was purchased incidently as it was folded and stuffed inside a book. When the document was discovered the owner, a Nashville resident, had it checked. The document was verified as authentic as were the signatures. This is the fourth page of a four-page document. The whereabouts of pages 1-3 are unknown. The document is currently on a nationwide tour, for which Alabama was the first stop.

In his inaugural address President Abraham Lincoln refers to the document saying, "The Union is much older than the Constitution. It was formed, in fact, by the Articles of Association in 1774. It was matured and continued by the Declaration of Independence in 1776. It was further matured ... by the Articles of Confederation in 1778. And finally, in 1787, one of the declared objects for ordaining and establishing the Constitution was "to form a more perfect Union."

Following the Boston Tea Party, which Stone explained shut down the operation of the port in Boston with tea blocking both channels that provided access, the colonies were punished with the so-called Intolerable Acts. The First Continental Congress, formed by the Articles of Association, urged repeal of these acts and threatened economic sanctions otherwise.

The document features names most every American knows: George Washington, John Adams, Samuel Adams. But Stone says it is unfortunate that more of us do not recognize other names on the document just as easily such as: Peyton Randolph, Henry Middleton, and Roger Sherman.

"These men have made significant contributions to and created the foundations for the U.S. Constituion that guarantees our rights today," Stone said.

For the moment the Sons of the American Revolution Chapter in Prattville are responsible for the document. According to Mack Clark, a member of the SAR the document will soon move on to its next destination on the tour. Clark, Stone and Richard Wells, another SAR member who appears in reproduction period dress during the presentation have given this presentation to schools, social/civic clubs and organisations such as the Millbrook Chamber many times recently.

"Every fifth grader in Elmore County has had an opportunity to see and learn about this document. We believe it is critically important for this to be seen by as many people as possible. Because so much is left out of our school history classes," Stone said.

Last Updated on Friday, 28 March 2014 19:34
 
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