This blog is about the story of my family here in America. We arrived in the 1630s as Puritans, and became the common folk of the New World.

Why the celebration of the 4th of July is about the War of 1812

If you're like most Americans, you know that the Fourth of July celebrates our declaration of indepedence from Britain in 1776. But really, it has much more to do with what we ended up calling the War of 1812.

My gggrandfather John Overstreet, served in both wars. But really, for all practical purposes, it was the same war, the war of independence from Britain. Only the history books draw such a sharp line.

When you watch the fireworks tonight, you are seeing the reenactment of the attack on the Port of Baltimore in 1812. That's because the British were still pretty sore at the upstart United States of America, and wanted to continue the fight. And there were a lot of people who figured that the young country was just about to breath its last.

The attack lasted all night. But in the morning light the American flag was still flying, lit up by the rockets' red glare. The United States had won its independence, and defended it. And it was something that the country would always remember, and celebrate.
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