Bullets, Baseball, Piggly Wiggly, and a King in a Tree …

On this day in history.

September 6 has quite a bit of history.

– Cal Ripken breaks the record for consecutive games played. 1995

– President McKinley was shot. 1901

– Magellan’s expedition to circumnavigate the globe is fulfilled. 1522

– Benedict Arnold orders the burning of New London, CT – a storage depot of the Continental Army. 1781

– 2.5 billion people watched the funeral of Princess Diana. Elton John performs a re-written ‘Candle in the Wind.’ 1997

– The Mayflower departs England for the New World. 1620

– The first modern supermarket opened in Memphis, TN – a Piggly Wiggly. 1916

But let me share an unusual tidbit …

In 1651, King Charles II of England escaped a losing Battle of Worcester. He did this by hiding inside an oak tree. Yes, I said inside. He had been King of Scotland since 1649 up in the execution of his father. Charles II was deposed and fled to the mainland. After Oliver Cromwell died in 1658, England was in a bit of disarray. The monarchy was reestablished and Charles II returned and regained the throne until 1685 – with his death due to an apoplectic fit.

It was a wild ride. He saw wars, fought with Parliament, and abolished Parliament for the last 4 years of his reign. In 1670, he promised to convert to Catholicism to get aid from France in a war with the Dutch. He fulfilled that promise on his deathbed.

Now here is how he connects to today. Charles tried to introduce religious freedom into English culture. The MPs struck that down. Charle’s effort was probably to stop the religious infighting in England. But the concept was about a hundred and thirty years before it came to fruition in America. Religious freedom has taken many forms through the centuries. Many have fought and bled for this freedom. And it is something we hold dear in America. We may differ a bit over how this is really played out in society, but may we never forsake the concept we hold dear.

I hope that we never forget how blessed America is and how religious freedom is something to be protected in years to come.

Today’s blog was more just informational. If nothing else, your view of Charles II might be a bit clearer now – and when you hear the name in the future, I hope you visualize him hiding in a tree all day long.

Maybe the tree was a residence of elves and he spent the day making cookies. I can live with that.

‘till tomorrow … todd

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