Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Portable Patriot

I am in love with this book! If anyone in your family is impassioned with the values and beliefs of our nation and their beginnings, you will want to take a look at this book.

It is very portable, just the right size to carry in your purse or bag. It is filled with documents, speeches, and sermons from not only founding fathers, but from many people who wrote accounts of their own ordeals and troubles while enduring in a troubled time.

The book is broken into 5 main categories:

1. Beginnings- Mayflower Compact, Mary Rowlandson's Recount of Her Captivity (heart wrenching!), Benjamin Franklin's own Epitaph (curiously written by him), and five other interesting reads.

2. Pre Revolution- A Pastor who defends Civil Resistance (Jonathan Mayhew), Samuel Adams on the Rights of the Americans, George Washington on the Question of Rebellion, and 10 other writings.

3. Revolution- A Letter from George Washington to His Generals, The Times That try Men's Souls, The Conditions at Valley Forge (tragic and heart breaking details), General Hull and the Killing of His Friend Nathan Hale, and many other selections.

4. Founding- Ben Franklin's Advice for Those Coming to America, George Washington on the Subject of Slavery, Joel Barlow on the Separation of Church and State, a total of 18 selections.

5. Republic- First Inaugural Adresss of George Washington, Education in the New Republic, and three other writings.

All writings have had very slight abridging done to them, not taking away anything from their original works. I am a stickler for wanting the purity of the works kept in tact, and I must say that Joel Miller and Kristen Parrish have done an amazing job. Misspelling, grammatical errors, and old phrasings still remain. Before each selection is a wonderful introduction by the authors that give accurate and clear information about the events and times leading to this writing.

I really loved the selections that were chosen. I would never on my own have stopped to read some of these lesser known writings, many of which are written by common people. You can hear the heart cry for freedom, the details of suffering are given, the honor to God given and reference to His mighty works are expressed all lead to heart warming literature. Humility and dependence on God is obvious to the reader.

This book is a worthy find and would do well on your school shelf. Those who use the Charlotte Mason approach to learning (using real and living books rather than text books-to sum it up simply) will want this historical book this coming school year.

Many of these writings have stirred my heart with the same fervency of the Freedom Speech given in the movie Braveheart, if I may make a modern contrast. This book does a superb job of covering more than the founding fathers views and writings. I am impressed with this book and would in a heartbeat make curriculum to go along with this. I am including this in my Jesse's (9th grade) reading list this year. Good job Joel and Kristen on your selections and editings. Your book will certainly help America as we wake up our interest in our country and as we learn to value our freedoms like we haven't done in a very long time.


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