When Windham NH Toasted the Fourth of July in 1825

Re-enactment Rev battleOn Monday the 49th Anniversary of American Independence was celebrated at Windham with the usual demonstrations of joy, gratitude, and festivity. In consequence of the unfavorable weather in the forenoon many who had intended to join in the celebration were prevented.

But having cleared up about noon–a large assembly had collected by one o’clock P.M. from that and the neighboring towns. A procession was formed and conducted to the meeting house by Capt. Perkins A. Hodge, Marshal of the day–The exercised were–the declaration of Independence read by Samuel Armor Esq.–Prayer by The Rev. Samuel Harris–Oration by Isaac McGaw Esq. Ode composed for the occasion by the “Rustic Bard” and sung by the choir belonging to Windham.


After the performances were closed the procession returned to a spacious Bower where between one and two hundred partook of a dinner served up in superior style by Capt. J. Campbell and Robert Dinsmoor.

DSC00040After dinner the following toasts were drunk accompanied by the discharge of cannon–and musick.
1. The day–the birth of freedom in the Western Hemisphere–may its influence reach the eastern and produce the best of national blessings–Liberty.
2. The Constitution of the U.S.–a monument of our father’s wisdom–may it be protected and defended by their sons.
3. General Washington–May we cherish his principles as we revere his memory.
4. A star in our glorious Constitution–not distinguished by size but brilliancy–The State of New Hampshire
5. The survivors of the Revolution–The Heroes of America, may their services be commemorated till time shall be no more.
6th. Gen. Bolivar–A second Washington–may his fame be as lasting as his deeds are glorious.
7th. Gov. Morril–A correct and enlightened Statesman should ever be our helmsman.
8th. The Greeks–Volunteers for Liberty–may their heroism equal that of the deceased and surviving Patriots of the Revolution–and their patriotism be rewarded with equal success.
9th. The memory of Stark and his brave associates at Bennington.
10th. The Revolutionary heroes of Windham–ready to obey the calls of their country in war.–equally ready to fulfill their duties in peace.
11th. Gen. Lafayette–The friend of America and universal emancipation–may his last days be as peaceful as his life has been pure.
12th. The Holy Alliance–born too late to be of healthy growth–may it soon die of the rickets.
13th. The temple of Justice in New Hampshire–It wants repairs–and we have excellent Masons.

The following are among the volunteers:
By Doctor Park of Boston. The memory of the pious emigrants from the North of Ireland, who planted a Colony in Londonderry–may their devotion to religious and political freedom–their love of social order and exaemplary morals distinguish their descendants.
By D. Allen, Esq. The Orator of the day.
By the Marshal. The free schools of New England–the safety valves which will forever prevent the increase of luxury–and the turbulence of faction from berating the political boiler.
By the “Rustic Bard,“–Gen. Lafayette–our country’s great and august friend, whom Statesmen revere and Bard’s delight to honor.
By Col. Park–Daniel Webster–the enlightened son of New-Hampshire, who like the natural sun is the centre of light and warmth wherever he holds his station.
By Jeremiah Morrison, Esq.–Ancient Greece–after having been politically dead for ages–may she imitate the example of America, and rise like the Phoenix from her ashes.

I cannot close without observing that at the memorable Battle of Bunker hill there were seven soldiers from Windham, one of whom was killed and four wounded.

From: New-Hampshire Statesman, (Concord, NH) Monday, July 11, 1825; Issue 28; col D; Celebration of the Fourth of July

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