Saturday, July 13, 2013


What better way to celebrate the Declaration than attending a reenactment of the Continental Congress.  I am taken to a place called The House, located at 65 Adams Street, the residence of the Adams family (not to be confused with the Addams Family) for four generations.  The grounds are known as “Peace field” and include the gardens and Carriage House.  We are directed to the Carriage House where Abigail Adams is giving us a bit of information as to what is going on and addresses us all as being men who own land.  We are attending the finalizing of the Declaration of Independence to decide on what should or not be included. Since there are 56 delegates, we get to draw a name from a hat.  All others beyond the 56 are there to assist their delegates. 

I have chosen the name William Paca and seated with the other delegates from Maryland and given some papers that explain who I am.  My home is at Wye Plantation. I am wealthy, outspoken, lively, and a slave owner and you will find me in Philadelphia buying guns for the army and clothes for myself.  It states what I did before the Congress and at the Congress. 

My Congressional Instructions read: “You like Thomas Jefferson’s Draft of the Declaration of Independence. However, you object to the passage that is critical of slavery because you own slaves. You will agree to accept the Declaration of Independence only if Congress takes them out. 
There are about a half dozen actors to portray the major contributors and children are welcome to be a delegate as well.  The two debates focused on the subject of abolishing slavery and whether to blame the English or just the King.  Abigail Adams made an appeal to her husband to include women. 

Each delegate votes, the Declaration is passed and we are able to sign our names to a copy.  Upon leaving we are directed to The House for a reading of the document as each are given a line or two to read out loud.  This is followed by refreshment and games. About an hour later, there is a play at the gardens.  It is a dramatization of the friendship between Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and Adams’ “dearest friend” Abigail. No charge for any of this.

Dinner this evening is at Adams Pub at the hotel.  Clam chowder was good but found the lobster to lack taste as if all of it came out when boiled.  I did see fireworks from my room window coming from various places.  Major one was in Boston.

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