Today we're celebrating independence from England.  That seems like such a long time ago, and it's not like we are adversaries with Great Britain any longer, in fact we're the best of friends.  Our enemy in 1776 doesn't exist today, and we have moved on also.  I can't imagine what it would be like here if this never happened.  For one thing, we would just be a colony of England, nothing special, but not quite an equal partner.  The unique resources of the US has changed even the people that live here and enabled them to build something unique in the world, and the world would be the poorer if it didn't exist.

Spirit of '76 painting 

 My heritage is mostly German, but somehow they seemed to spoil things for me in WW2.  You can see from this website that I am a confirmed Anglophile, but of course my loyalties reside with America first.  Our heritage doesn't go back thousands of years, but in the short time we have become the model of democracy.  England did begin things early in the game with the Magna Carta, and the English Bill of Rights in 1689, but we blasted ahead in a short time.

We do have our problems.  From the outside, we seem to have a propensity for gunning each other down, which is the case in a fringe of our society.  For the majority, though, we enjoy firearms as you would a custom car or motorcycle, which are definitely not used for driving over each other.  We do think the rest of the world should follow our example, even though our example is flawed to the point that we are closing off our borders to those who want to share our philosophies of freedom.  Our phones and email are tapped for our protection, but who protects us from the eavesdroppers?  

Notwithstanding all that, I like it here.  And thanks again to Britain for losing the war.  I know you really had your hands full with the French at the time, and weren't all that interested in us anyway, but thanks just the same.  Happy Fourth!

Vermilion Ohio stands at the south end of Lake Erie and has for generations been the place for the rich from Cleveland to play with their boats.  Vermilion has the traditional cannon on display in the town's Exchange Park in the center of town.  A handsome pair of 32 pounder Dahlgren guns, smoothbore with the anchor signifying naval use.  These two guns look brand new, and appear to have been installed around 1900, with the only source I could find specifying the guns were not used in the Civil War. This is possible, as the last Dahlgren guns were made in 1867.  

picture of Dahlgren gun

Dahlgren Gun

Dahlgren Gun

Dahlgren Gun

The real surprise was the lighthouse.  After 1877 the old wooden lighthouse was torn down, and the new one was cast out of melted down Columbiad smoothbore cannon.  That lighthouse is gone to Ontario now, but a replica iron lighthouse stands on the public beach in Vermilion.

picture of Vermillion lighthouse

From swords to ploughshares...