Red Ink and Rewrites Too

Duplicates online comments, to keep track.

Does the Declaration of Independence mean anything?

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As an archaeology worker in the US I had the opportunity to work for a bit on the William Floyd Manor, which had recently been given in trust to the US government. Who was he? He was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, a New Yorker from Long Island related by marriage to Ezra L’Hommedieu, an important politician and later one of the first Regents of the New York State Dept. of Education. William Floyd was perhaps the first New Yorker to sign the Declaration of Independence, based on his position, fourth on the list, of those that signed. He had to abandon the manor in Old Mastic and its said the British Army boarded horses in the manor house, though probably a story. There is a famous conference and house on the south end of Staten Island in NYC, all this could have been avoided at which sat Benjamin Franklin, but alas they say they couldn’t agree if the windows should be opened or closed!

Some of the Founding Fathers visited the William Floyd Manor after the Revolution and they collected some of the native words nearby as they had an interest in linguistics. Nearby was the fort at the Manor of St. George, that the Americans routed with no bloodshed one sleepy Sunday morning, coming over in whaleboats from Connecticut. Today the “manor” is next to modern “atomic town” Shirley, NY near the former WWI “Yip yip Yaphank” camp Irving Berlin wrote about in song. The camp at Upton, NY has been used for the peaceful use of nuclear energy, at Brookhaven National Laboratory, once run by the AEC, then Dept. of Energy, recently a consortium of universities with nearby Stony Brook University, founded in the 1960s, as the lead.

It’s said the only original manor still existing in the US today is that of Gardiner’s Island, which I read had its title signed by King James of Scotland in the 17th century. Former President Tyler’s second wife was the young daughter of NY’s US Senator Gardiner, Julia, of whom Gloria Swanson said would take a Vivian Leigh to portray, were thrown together below deck of the USS Princeton when the “free” “Peacemaker” cannon, fired in salute to George Washington’s Mount Vernon while passing by, exploded killing the Senator and two Cabinet members and others. I think it was cast by the Haddersley Forge in Manhattan, at the time many iron works were there. One, removed to the Bronx, from nearby City Hall, Janes and Kirtland, after casting the then cast iron Library of Congress and other structures, cast and assembled the current Capitol Dome for a little over $1 million for President Abraham Lincoln, replacing the “hat box” that had been on the halls of Congress. Anyway I find it interesting to be outside looking in sometimes. A serious excavation has gone on at the former Sylvester Manor on Shelter Island, and shows that the manors were involved with faraway trade with Jamaica and elsewhere. Which prompts the NY Times to ask, “Was the Island Pre-Fab From the Start?”

I think “happiness” may have meant the lack of “absenteeism”. It’s just an expression “Pond”.

Newsvine – A View From Across The Pond – Does the Declaration of Independence mean anything?

(Aug 7, 9:42 PM): Old liquor bottles used to have the name of the owner on them on a bottle seal on the “shoulder” in the 18th century. They sort of looked like a wax letter seal in glass. A broken bottle seal fragment with “Wm. Lloyd” on it (a Tory manor owner) in the house garden grounds of the William Floyd Manor, a New York signer of the “Declaration of Independence” and then later a general in the American Revolutionary War might be one though not really a written document. I did find a deed reference to a property held in partnership by William Floyd with Ezra L’Hommedieu in the New York Public Library resources.

Written by georgejmyersjr

08/03/2008 at 4:34 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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