At this anniversary Jamestown, we went to the Jamestown Quadricentennial Celebration: A Celebration of God's Providential History. It happened June 11 (Monday) through June 16 (Saturday). It was put on by Doug Phillips, and his organization Vision Forum. Vision Forum is a company that is trying to teach people more about God. They believe in family integrated churches, instead of Sunday School. They are trying to restore Biblical roles of men and women. In my family there is me, Joshua Horn, my sister Rachel and brother Stephen. My parents are Dan and Kendra. We live at this time in Person County in northern North Carolina and we left for Jamestown after church on Sunday. We go to church at Hope Baptist, and we meet in Mr. Scott Brown's house (also called a barn because that is what it looks like.) Mr. Brown is the head of an organization that was started by Vision Forum, The National Center for Family Integrated Churches. The Browns left for Jamestown, and then we went to our good friends the Breagy's house because we had to give them some stuff that they left at the Brown's barn. Then we stayed there and talked to them, and then they left and we left to. We ate dinner with them at Pizza Hut. The drive was about three hours. We stayed at some condos which my Grandparents let us use for a week. Then we went to sleep and got up early the next morning to go to the opening ceremonies. There was a reenactment of the first landing and they gave some of the speakers an opportunity to give some of the things that they were going to talk about in the week. The reenactment had three boats in it filled with people. The boats came and then the people landed and planted the flag and cross. After this, we went to a Faith and Freedom mini tour. When you signed up for the week, you got to choose 3 tours that went to either Williamsburg Jamestown and Yorktown. Our mini tour that day was to the battlefield of Yorktown. Our speaker was Mr. Bill Potter He is one of my favorite speakers. On Faith & Freedom Tours he is the one that speaks about military strategy. He talked about the strategy of Yorktown and the Providence of God thought that event. One very interesting story is about that when Cornwallis tried to cross over the river to escape from the American and French troops, a storm came up and scattered their boats that they were going to cross it! This is a good example of God's Providence. That night we went to the opening speeches at the Hampton Roads Convention Center. My favorite talk from that was Dr. Paul Jehle about how God used different men to make to founding of Jamestown possible. Mr Phillips taught us this Revolutionary song Chester.
Let tyrants shake their iron rod,
And slav'ry clank her galling chains.
We fear them not; we trust in God,
New England's God forever reigns.
Howe and Burgoyne and Clinton, too,
With Prescott and Cornwallis joined,
Together plot our overthrow,
In one infernal league combined.
When God inspired us for the fight
Their ranks were broke; their lines were forced
Their ships were shattered in our sight
Or swiftly driven from our shore.
The foe comes on with haughty stride,
Our troops advance with martial noise;
Their veterans flee before our youth,
And generals yield to beardless boys.
What grateful off'ring shall we bring?
What shall we render to this Lord?
Loud Hallelujah let us sing,
And praise His Name on ev'ry chord!
The next day, Tuesday, we drove to the Williamsburg Lodge (a hotel and conference center in Colonial Williamsburg) to hear a speech on the providence at Jamestown by Steve McDowell. I would have enjoyed it more if there had not been so much repetition. After that we drove to the Marriott to hear a talk from Dr. Paul Jehle about how God used many different events in 1607 to work together to found Jamestown. It was called "Kingdom Seeds at America's Birth: 1607 The Birth of the Nation " It was very interesting. Then we drove to Yorktown again for a tour with Dan Ford and Michael Billings. We meant to go to Williamsburg with Dan Ford and Michael Billings on that day, but they messed up our tickets. Michael Billings told a story about how the Americans had just defeated the British in a battle, and then they were being chased. The Americans wanted to escape from the British with their prisoners, cannons, etc. The Americans crossed over a river, and when the British got to it, it started raining so they could not cross because it was flooded. Then the Americans came to another river, and after they crossed, it miraculously rose without any known reason so that the British could not cross again. This happened again when they came to the next river! This is a fascinating story of God's Providence to save the Americans.
That night there were two talks, the first was by Marshal Foster. It was on the Bible and how it influenced the colonists. The bible was very important in Jamestown. The reason Jamestown was founded was because of the Geneva Bible (the first Bible printed for the common man) because it gave them the vision to come and evangelize the Indians and to take dominion over the entire world. The Geneva Bible was also very important because it was the first bible cheap enough for the common man to buy. After Mr. Foster gave this speech, a John Smith reenactor came. We did not like him very well because he did not know very much. Everyone but me wanted to leave before he finished, but we did not leave. When he finished we went back to our hotel to get some sleep.
On Wednesday, the first thing that we did was to go to the Marriott to listen to a talk by Mr. Doug Phillips about the battles of the world views in Jamestown. It was called "Europeans and Indians at Jamestown: Demythologizing the Story " He talked about how people now talk about how the settlers stole the Indians' land, and how that is wrong. Here are two things that he said. First, there were only 100,000 to at the absolute most 1,000,000 Indians at the time of Jamestown. Second, the Indians had no idea of property rights, so that they couldn't really be stolen from because they didn't think that they owned it. So they would sell it for a few coins, and then get angry because the English said that they could not have it back. After that, we heard Mr Potter on "Warfare!: The Powhatan vs. The Englishman " He showed that the English did not have a huge advantage over the Indians in battle, once they were not scared of the noise the guns made. This was a very interesting speech After that I went to a speech by Col. John Eidsmoe "The Indian View of Law and Justice" I had heard most of it from the History of the World Conference. He explained that the Indians did have a system of law. Then we went to our third, and last Faith and Freedom tour. It was to Jamestown, with Paul Jehle. Some of our friends from North Carolina, the Damings, were there with us. We went around the Jamestown Island, and saw the Tricentennial pillar, the John Smith statue, and one very special thing was that Mr. Jehle took us to see where they were doing archaeological digging. They talked to us about what they found. I enjoyed that Faith and Freedom Tour allot.
When you purchased the passes, you got three tethered balloon ride tickets. We decided to use them the next day, Thursday. We had to get up early because the rest of the day (except in the late afternoon) there was to much wind to fly. There was a fairly big line. Mommy stayed home to sleep, but they let Daddy go up in the balloon with us, even though we only had three tickets. It was kind of scary because the flames were noisy and it went high. After that we ate breakfast. Then we drove to Fort Pocahontas to go on a boat tour of the historic James river. Fort Pocahontas was part of the estate of John Tyler. When President Tyler was very old, he had a son. And when that son was old he had a son, named Harrison Tyler, who is alive to this very day! It is amazing that there is someone alive at this time who's grandfather knew Thomas Jefferson. Of course, Harrison Tyler never met his grandfather, and his father died when he was young. Mr. Tyler bought back Fort Pocahontas from some bankrupt condo-builders. He was very kind to let Vision Forum use his land for the Quadricenntenial. He was the Grand Marshal. The boat tour was neat, but we could not hear much of what the tour guide said, because it was so windy. There was a good view of Jamestown Island. The tour was about two hours long. After we finished the boat tour, we returned to our condo. We bought some groceries, and then went swimming in the pool. That was really fun. That evening we were supposed to go on the Vip Dinner Cruse. It left from the Yorktown Pier. Four families from our church were going. We boarded the ship, and sat with our friends from church (The Breagys and the Damings). The children sat at one table and the adults at another. We had a great time. One neat thing that happened, was that we were riding down the river, near the Coast Guard Station, and a coast guard patrol boat came out and starting showing off and driving around our ship. That was very neat. We left the ship, and they gave each family a Jefferson cup with "Jamestown Quadricentennial 1607 – 2007" on it. They dinner cruse was really neat. There were several speakers on the boat. They were Doug Phillips, president of Vision Forum, Marshal Foster, who published the Geneva Bible, Dr. Liliback, who I had never heard before and who spoke on George Washington and Charlie Zahm. Charlie Zahm is a Celtic and American singer. He sings Scottish and Early American songs. We first heard him on the Faith and Freedom Tour to Pennsylvania. I enjoyed him very much.
The next day, Friday, was the first day that the entire day was at Fort Pocahontas We were planing to get there in time for the children's parade, but when we got there, it took an hour to park! We got there just in time for the first speech. Mr. Phillips opened, and then Mr. Harrison Tyler, the Grand Marshal, explained the history of the fort. It was a small Civil War fort that was used in combat once. It was built to protect ships traveling on the James river, on which it was built. It was garrisoned by some USCT (United States Colored Troops) troops under Brigadier General Edward Wild. The USCT were not used for battle, because they did not think that they could fight well. They were attacked on May 24, 1864 by Calvary troops under General Fitzhugh Lee. The Confederates were beaten off with the lost of 100 men killed, wounded or captured. The Union's lost was only 20. This was important because it was the first battle where the USTC proved that they could fight. When he was done, the speakers spoke on the four pillars of Jamestown. Here they are: Gospel Evangelism by Doug Phillips, Christian Worship by Dr. Paul Jehle, Bible Based Common Law by Col. John Eidsmoe, Christian Representative Government by Dr. Joe Morcraft. After these speeches were given, we ate the lunch that we brought It was chicken salad on crescent rolls. Then we went to go see the Revolutionary War rein actors that were there, but Daddy got 'stuck' at the old books table! I bought two old G. A. Henty books. Then Mommy took me to see the reenactor Then we went back to the big tent and Mr. Morecraft gave a speech about the importance of laying memorial stones to what God has done. Then we went down to the dedication of the Jamestown Children's Memorial. This was the only monument built in 2007. Children across America gave $1 or more donations to build this monument. All the children who gave had their names placed in a time capsule, to be opened in 2107. My name was placed in the time capsule. My sister Rachel's was also, and my brother Stephen gave to it, but they had a mistake and his name did not get in. Mr. Harrison Tyler placed the cover on the time capsule of the monument. After the monument laying time we ate dinner and came back to the tent for the evening celebration. The first message was by Jonathan Falwell, the son of Jerry Falwell, who was going to speak, but he died. So he came and gave his father's message. He talked about the Providence of God. Then Dr. Peter Liliback gave a talk on George Washington. He said that he was not a Deist and believed in the Providence of God. After that was a reenactment of Patrick Henry's speech, but Mommy was tired so we left before it. It took a lot of time to leave because there were so many people. We got home and went to bed.
The next day we got up early to get to the children's parade in time. We were really early, there was almost no one else there. So we went down to the children's monument, because there were so many people we did not get to see it at the dedication the day before. We looked at it and read all the words. Then we went over to where the children's parade was going to start. There were three groups: the soldiers, the ladies and the flag bearers. I was a flag bearer. I carried the North Carolina flag. I was also in the front row. Stephen was a solider and Rachel was a lady. I liked being in the parade. The leader went 1, 2, 3 and then everyone with HUZZAH. We huzzahed more then any of the other groups. It was really fun. Then we went into the big tent again. The first speech was by Marshal Foster on Providence and Perseverance at Jamestown. Then two reenactors of Presidents which had spoken at previous Jamestown Celebrations came and spoke to us. They were Presidents John Tyler and Theodore Roosevelt. John Tyler gave some of his 3 hour speech. Theodore Roosevelt gave a look at the life of Roosevelt. That was the end of the morning, so we went to go eat lunch. When I finished, I went to go help David Brown, one of the young men at our church. He had a table with drinks. Me, my brother Stephen, one of my friends Stephen Breagy and Anthony and Nathaniel Daming (who all go to our church) helped while David took a break. The next speech was by Paul Jehle, but I had already heard it earlier in the week, so I continued to help. Then was the conclusion of the Jamestown 400: Our National Treasure Hunt. I was part of it, but I could not keep up to the end. I am planning on writing another letter on it later. I wanted to see who the winner was. One hundred people came to Jamestown for the hunt for the gold. They traveled around in Jamestown, Williamsburg and Yorktown looking for clues, and each day a few were eliminated. Then finally there were only three people left. They came early on Saturday morning, and each had to answer historical questions. The person that got it right got to choose on of three places to dig. Each got a box with a key in it. Then they got to try it on the box for the treasure. We had met some of the Thomas family who won at one of the conferences that Daddy taught at. I ran down from the drink stand to hear the end of the hunt. It was really exciting. The person next to us was selling hot dogs and snow cones. David bought a sone-cone for all of us, and then the person gave us a free hot dog later. We sold out of water really early, so we kept sending the people who wanted water to the funnel cake place, who still had water. Somewhere around this time Mrs. Morecraft read a poem that she had written for the Quadrcennenial. It was very long, and I did not listen to it. After that there was a break, and then some of the people went back to an auction of artifacts in the tent. Daddy bought several things, and one was a very old map of America. Some people who came brought about 10 pieces of PVC pipe, covered in insulation and then wrapped in duck tape. The made swords that did not hurt to be hit with. They organized sword-fighting matches. Everyone that wanted to play were organized into three groups. Then each group was given two swords, and were divided into two lines, going from smallest to largest. Two of your people were sent out at a time, and then when they were killed, they gave switched swords with the person who killed them, and then gave the sword to the person next in line from their team. I did it once. I was on the same team as Nathaniel Daming. When I got out, I did not kill anyone. One person hit me on the head, (which they were not supposed to do) so they were thrown out and I stayed. Then someone came up to me and I hit them in the leg and they hit me in the right arm. So I had to use my left arm. If you got both legs or arms cut of, or it you were hit in the body, you were dead. I kept fighting, until my partner ran across the field right past two of the enemies. I followed him, because it was better to work together, and then one of our enemies swung at my friend, and then came back and hit me. So that meant that I was dead. I had alot of fun. Then the time came for the grand celebration. I came into the tent for this. There were speeches by Mr. Phillips and Mr. Bodkin (who was a filmmaker who lived in New Zealand) about our vision for the next 100 years. Mr Phillips was really horse after all that talking. Then came a play that was about the Marriage of Pocahontas and John Rolfe. After that they finished off the evening with fireworks. I really liked the fireworks. Daddy stood around and talked for a while, and then we went over to where the shuttle picked up the dads so they could go get the cars. The problem was that they could not drive the shuttles while the fireworks were going on, so there was a HUGE line of people waiting to get their cars. After a really long wait, we finally got in our car. In the morning we got up to go to the church service at Fort Pocahontas. Doug Phillips led singing, and then Mr Jehle preached on Ephesians 3:14-21. We really liked the sermon. People liked it so much, that enough people requested that it be put on CD that they put it in the recording.
I enjoyed the Quadricenntenial very much. I think it is very important that we remember and honor those who have come before. I want to tell my children the great stories of God's Providential history. I want to tell them the Providential stories in my own life. That is why I am writing this letter. I want to remind myself of how me and my family celebrated the Quadricenntenial.