Celebrating the American Revolution - Municipal Symbols of a Free Country

Marvin W. Bubie

Published by MNO Books, 2011
ISBN 10: 0615507085 / ISBN 13: 9780615507088
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Synopsis: This book is a celebration of the American Revolution, a celebration of how Americans view civic heraldry and a celebration of a unique freedom. Just as we overthrew the monarchy and established a new kind of government and a new kind of social hierarchy based on merit rather than birth or privilege, our municipal identities as evidenced by our official seals became based on how we viewed ourselves. We wanted to express our identities in a more literal sense rather than through the obscure symbolism of 700-800 years of heraldic traditions developed in feudal monarchies of Europe. There, official seals were drawn and handed down from and with the approval of the government or monarchs. From 1776 on in America, that role was omitted from the constitution by the federal government and by default left to closest form of government to the people. So, we the people get a say in our official identity and as usual in our pluralistic society, the range our official seals is as limitless as our imaginations. One thing remains the same, though. The seal itself becomes ubiquitous and can appear everywhere from welcome signs to our communities, to the podiums from which our officials speak, to identifying municipal vehicles, buildings, shoulder patches, etc. Whether the seal is based on legend or history, the original meaning is filed away, sometimes to be lost and forgotten. Some seals are self explanatory, but many are not and can be representative of a point in history that may no longer be visible. The seals that celebrate our War of Independence are generally more readily identifiable as belonging to that war but not to the specific battle or event leading up to an event more commonly studied such as Washington Crossing the Delaware, Paul Revere's Midnight Ride, Burgoyne's surrender at Saratoga, etc. The fact is the war lasted 8 years, was fought primarily during 8 or 9 months of the year and involved virtually every colony. It was more of a civil war than usually taught and many battles involved more Patriots and Tories and Indian allies than British and Hessian soldiers. What I have tried to do is uncover those meanings and to celebrate the lives of the many ordinary individuals who accomplished extraordinary things. People faced a decision of accepting that they were not free citizens, but rather subjects that were expected to behave like loyal subjects at the whim of a government they had no say in, or resist. Each town, city, and village listed here has a proud heritage of their participation in one of the most significant events in the history of the country and in the history of the world. Over 200 pages, each with a municipal seal are included in this book. Each seal is a symbol of freedom.

About the Author: Marvin Bubie was born and raised in the Capital District of New York, graduating from Averill Park High School and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He is a retiree from GE and has lived in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Virginia. In addition, he spent 18 months in Germany with the US Army and has returned to Europe many times visiting Switzerland, Italy, Austria and Germany. Over the years he has collected the seals from various cities, towns, counties, boroughs and villages in this county as well as those in Europe. Each seal is a mini-history lesson and a collection all relating to a common heritage tell of a reverence for that heritage. Marvin has three books - the first covering the Dutch heritage of New York's Hudson River from Manhattan to Amsterdam, NY, the second illustrating municipal symbols along the Erie Canal and the third has seals from Maine to Georgia that celebrate participation in the American Revolution.

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Celebrating the American Revolution - ...
Publisher: MNO Books
Publication Date: 2011
Book Condition: Good

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