Monday, July 04, 2011

Freedom Is A Light For Which Many Men Have Died In Darkness

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Have a happy and safe Independence Day.

Take some time out to remember the many souls who sacrificed and died to make our country free.

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Washington Square (Philadelphia) honors those who died in the Revolutionary War. The tomb itself is inscribed with: "Beneath this stone rests a soldier of Washington's army who died to give you liberty."

This square was used as a mass grave on many occasions beginning in 1706 and continuing through the Yellow Fever epidemic of 1793. Paupers, soldiers, common citizens and criminals all lie co-mingled underneath the square. The area was cleaned up and named for George Washington in 1825. In 1956, one soldier was disinterred and placed in the memorial tomb to represent all. The statue, tomb, and memorial were erected to honor both George Washington and the unknown soldier.

An excellent overview of the history of Washington Square can be found here.


Jeni said...

Now there's a piece of history I've never heard before -and here I am, a native Pennsylvanian too! For shame on me! But then too, in all my years (well over 60 of 'em now) I've only ever been in Philadelphia once and that was at the airport, waiting on a connecting flight and a 2nd time, on a weekend visit to a cousin who lives in a Philly suburb. So I've never even seen any of the historice places in our "city of Brotherly Love." I have however been to Gettysburg -a long, long time ago on my Junior Class Trip so maybe that compensates a teensy bit for my lack of knowledge about the earliest events in our countries history.
Suffice it to say though that the words over that tomb really do speak legions -or they should anyway -to all of us as we do owe one tremendous debt of gratitude to so many who have given so much so we can enjoy the life we live here today!

LL said...

Are there any cats buried there?

fermicat said...

Jeni- I think that happens to everyone. I live in Atlanta and haven't been to all of the historic and/or "tourist" destinations.

LL - from the history I read about, it seems that there is a little bit of everything dead buried in that square.

Dianne said...

I love how you left only the flame in color
adds to the power

Hope says thanks and sends hugs :)