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July 4, 2017 - James Monroe Honored at Fort Monroe Celebration

Amid speeches, gun salutes, and flag raising, President James Monroe was honored at his namesake fort, Fort Monroe, located on Virginia's coast.

Featured speaker was Elise Harding-Davis.

Other speakers included NPS Ranger Aaron Firth, Fort Monroe Authority Executive Director Glenn Odor, and Mark Walsh of the James Monroe Foundation.

The musicians were Bob and Jeanne Zentz.

The unit name was the 99th NY Volunteer Infantry, Company D.

Photographs are courtesy of Claude Sneed.


James Monroe, 5th President, warns of "usurper" and defends against Muslim pirates

American Minute with Bill Federer

Apr. 28 - James Madison, 5th President, warns of "usurper" and defends
against Muslim pirates Leading the charge at the Battle of Trenton, a
musket ball struck his shoulder, hitting an artery.

He recovered and continued to fight for General Washington, becoming
friends with French officer Lafayette.

His name was James Monroe, born APRIL 28, 1758.

Home-schooled as a child by Reverend William Douglas, James Monroe was
fellow-students with John Marshall, who became the Chief Justice of the
Supreme Court.

Monroe graduated from the College of William and Mary, studied law under
Thomas Jefferson, and was a delegate to the Continental Congress.


He served as U.S. Senator, Governor of Virginia, Secretary of War, and
Secretary of State, where he negotiated the Louisiana Purchase which
doubled the size of the United States.

Elected the 5th U.S. President, James Monroe acquired Florida from Spain,
1819; added Maine, Illinois, Missouri, Alabama and Mississippi to the
Union; and proclaimed the Monroe Doctrine, 1823, which forbade European
powers from interfering with the independent nations of the Western


In his First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1817, President James Monroe

"What raised us to the present happy state?...The Government has been in
the hands of the people. To the people, the credit due...

It is only when the people become ignorant and corrupt, when they
degenerate into a populace, that they are incapable of exercising the

Usurpation is then an easy attainment, and an usurper soon found. The
people themselves become the willing instruments of their own debasement
and ruin...

James Monroe continued:

"If we persevere...we can not fail, under the favor of a gracious
Providence...My fervent prayers to the Almighty that He will be graciously
pleased to continue to us that protection which He has already so
conspicuously displayed in our favor."


When Muslim Barbary Pirates committed terrorist attacks, President James
Monroe refused appeasement and instead deployed the U.S. Navy, as he
stated, March 5, 1821:

"Our relations with the Barbary Powers are the same means
that were employed when I came into this office. As early as 1801 it was
found necessary to send a squadron into the Mediterranean for the
protection of our commerce."


In his 5th Annual Message, December 3, 1821, President James Monroe

"A squadron has been maintained in the Mediterranean, by means whereof
peace has been preserved with the Barbary Powers...From past is distinctly understood that should our squadron be
withdrawn they would soon recommence their hostilities and depredations
upon our commerce."


In 1823, President James Monroe, with the U.S. Congress, ordered Decatur,
Alabama, to be founded in honor of Commodore Stephen Decatur, the renowned
U.S. Naval officer who forced the Muslim pirates to surrender, ending the
Barbary Wars.


In his First Annual Message, December 2 1817, President James Monroe

"In grateful acknowledgments to that Omnipotent unceasing prayer
that He will endow us with virtue and strength."

On November 16, 1818, in his 2nd Annual Message, President Monroe stated:

"For these inestimable blessings we can not but be grateful to that
Providence which watches over the destiny of nations...

When we view the blessings with which our country has been favored...Let us
then, unite in offering our most grateful acknowledgments for these
blessings to the Divine Author of All Good."

On November 14, 1820, in his 4th Annual Message, President James Monroe

"When...we take into view the prosperous and happy condition of our is impossible to behold...without being penetrated with the
most profound and grateful acknowledgments to the Supreme Author of All
Good for such manifold and inestimable blessings...especially...our most
excellent system of government, the powerful instrument in the hands of our
All-merciful Creator in securing to us these blessings."


On March 5, 1821, in his 2nd Inaugural Address, President Monroe stated:

"The liberty, prosperity, and happiness of our country will always be the
object of my most fervent prayers to the Supreme Author of All Good....With
a firm reliance on the protection of Almighty God."

On December 3, 1821, in his 5th Annual Message, President Monroe stated:

"Deeply impressed with the blessings which we mind is
irresistibly drawn to that Almighty Being, the great source from whence
they proceed and to whom our most grateful acknowledgments are due."

On December 7, 1824, in his 8th Annual Message, President James Monroe

"For these blessings we owe to Almighty God...with profound reverence, our
most grateful and unceasing acknowledgments....

Having commenced my service in early youth, and continued it since with few
and short intervals, I have witnessed the great difficulties to which our
Union has been exposed, and admired the virtue and intelligence with which
they have been surmounted...

That these blessings may be preserved and perpetuated will be the object of
my fervent and unceasing prayers to the Supreme Ruler of the Universe."

President James Monroe, who was a member of the Episcopalian Church,

"The establishment of our institutions forms the most important epoch that
history hath recorded...To preserve and hand them down in their utmost
purity to the remotest ages will require the existence and practice of the
virtues and talents equal to those which were displayed in acquiring them."


James Monroe stated:

"Of the liberty of conscience in matters of religious faith, of speech and
of the press; of the trial by jury;...of the benefit of the writ of habeas
corpus; of the right to keep and bear arms...

If these rights are...secured against encroachments, it is impossible that
government should ever degenerate into tyranny."
 News from

James Monroe Law Office

"James Monroe, Fifth President of the United States, held more public offices than ever has been held by an American.  In this quaint old structure built in 1758, he began his long and brilliant career.  It was restored as a National Shrine by Monroe's great grand-son, Lawrence Hoes and contains James Monroe's priceless collection of antique possessions."

The James Monroe Law Office and Garden

The James Monroe Law Office and Garden

Last Updated on Monday, 02 January 2012 15:58
Photo of Monroe-Era Virginia Capital Building
Virginia Capital Building



Last Updated on Monday, 02 January 2012 15:58
What Happened to the 56 Men Who Signed the Declaration of Independence?

Editor's Note:  Some of this information has been challenged.

Please click here to read the analysis of the following document.


Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?

Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.

Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.

Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.

Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.

They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.

What kind of men were they?

Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists.

Eleven were merchants, nine were farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated, but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.

Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.

Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly.

He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.

Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.

At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General  George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt .

Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed.

The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.

John Hart was driven from his wife's bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished.

Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn't.

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