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His soul is marching on!

The house I live in was built in the 1760s. It's in the "Old City" neighborhood of Philadelphia -- so named because, well, the neighborhood is old. The street in front of my house is made of Belgium Ballast stone. Ships from Belgium would load up with these stones, sail to Philly, dump the stones overboard and then load up with merchandise for their travel back to Antwerp; the enterprising citizens of Philadelphia did not let the stones go to waste -- they built roads with them. At the end of my block, there are two churches. The first is St. Augustine's, a Roman Catholic church, completed in 1829 (with the "Sister Bell" in its tower... the sister of the Liberty Bell... it was the bell in Independence Hall after the first one cracked). The second is St. George's, the site of the oldest Methodist church in the United States, dating back to the 18th Century. My block is all about being old; nary a cul-de-sac for miles. (If you have a good memory, the block was shown in the begining of the Sixth Sense.)

Yesterday morning, for the one year anniversary of 9/11, I went to the flag store two blocks away (which is right across the street from Betsy Ross's house; if you were going to have a flag store, where would you put it?), bought a flag pole, walked back and installed a flag on my house out a third floor window. When I went outside to see how it looked, I could, from St. Augustine's, hear music playing; it was John Brown's Body also known as the Battle Hymn of the Republic. One of America's greatest songs in tribute to one of America's greatest citizens.

When Brown was hung, churches all over the North paid tribute to him by ringing their bells, and for a second, on 9/11/02, I felt, standing on New Street, like I was back in the 19th Century. And I thought it was so very appropriate for 9/11 and the 21st Century. As Brown died to make men free, let us live to make them free.


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 12, 2002 11:43 AM.

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