Back in time with Washington [UPDATED]Published 4:34am Tuesday, September 3, 2013 Updated 6:36am Tuesday, September 3, 2013
There are at least 20 historical markers located in Connecticut that lay claim to having George Washington “pause” there, “sleep” there, “visit” there or “travel through” there.
These markers cover a period from 1756 to 1789.
I’ve felt fortunate to walk along a stagecoach trail used by Washington in 1789, the year he became president. That’s 224 years ago when he traveled from Middletown to Hartford, Conn.
Washington was “first in war, first in peace and first in the hearts of his countrymen.” He was a general in the Revolutionary War and the first President of the United States.
Washington was inaugurated as president on April 30, 1789, near New York City’s Wall Street, at Federal Hall. He played a leading role in the decision to locate the permanent national capital in the District of Columbia.
In accordance with the Residence Act of 1790, Philadelphia, Penn., served as temporary national capital for 10 years while the “Washington, DC” Federal City, later named in honor of Washington, was under construction. Beginning in November 1790, Washington spent the lion’s share of his presidency in Philadelphia.
Washington retired from the presidency in March 1797. His successor, John Adams, moved into the White House in Washington, D.C., in 1800.
On his second evening in the unfinished rooms in the White House, Adams wrote, “I pray Heaven to bestow the best of Blessings on this House and all that shall hereafter inhabit it. May none but honest and wise Men ever rule under this roof.”
The Continental Congress, representing the 13 colonies, became the governing body of the United States during the American Revolution and the years following the war. The Congress met from 1774 to 1789.
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Jim Vellone was a starting offensive guard for the Minnesota Vikings when they played in their first Super Bowl in 1970. I never forgot Vellone whose life was cut short, at 33, seven years later.
Vellone abruptly retired from the NFL in 1971 when he discovered he had Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He spent the final six years of his life undergoing treatments.
Vellone, born in 1944, spent his entire five-year career with the Minnesota Vikings, starting in most of his appearances during this span.
Before he entered the world of pro football, Vellone played college football for two years at the University of Southern California. Prior to joining the USC Trojans, Vellone was a junior college All-American guard at Cerritos College, in a suburb of Los Angeles.
With the Vikings, Vellone was a teammate of offensive tackle Ron Yary, who likewise was a star lineman at Cerritos College and at USC. Yary later became a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Vellone’s passing touched the lives of many Vikings fans, including me. He left behind his wife, Linda, and two sons.
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It’s Labor Day Weekend and time for our family, after a lapse of a few years, to return to the Western Minnesota Steam Threshers Reunion in Rollag, northeast of Barnesville.
The following weekend we look forward to attending Dalton’s Lake Region Pioneer Threshermen’s Show, from Sept. 6-8.
The Rollag thresher reunion is fun for people from near and far. People convey why this is a great Labor Day weekend get-together.
“Rollag is always the don’t-miss event of the year. I’m never disappointed when I go.”
“I like everything about Rollag. The food is great, people are very friendly, all the tractors are interesting. Best of all is the train ride around the park.”
“I hope this goes on for many years to come. Thank you also to all the employees and volunteers. Great job.”
“I loved the working sawmills. My friend told me it was a great time, and he was right. Everything was run so well. I look forward to being there again next year.”