An Obscure Clerk Saved Our History
Face it: bureaucrats, those unelected holders of colorless government jobs, are among the least popular Americans. They rate at the bottom of the list, right alongside used car salesmen and sewer cleaners.
Yet we owe a huge debt to one such drone who, when crisis came, acted calmly, cooly and saved the greatest documents in our history. This is his story.
HOW ONE BLAST CHANGED HISTORY
Of all the forgotten tales I bring to life in this column, this may be the most obscure. You must dig mighty deep in the history books to find it. Forgotten today, it played a key role in determining which nation would control what’s now the southeastern United States.
And just one cannon shot settled it.
It all started during the tangled international knot that was the War of 1812. While we were battling Britain, Britain was also battling pesky Napoleon on the Continent. The Brits needed all the men they could get for their military. So in 1814 they revived the Corps of Colonial Marines. Continue reading