Essay on Betsy Ross and the Legend of "old Glory"

1880 Words 8 Pages
In 1776 the United States of America became a great nation, free from Britain's rule. We became a nation full of freedom and opportunity, symbolized by many great icons. The Statue of Liberty, the Liberty Bell, this great nations capitol, the District of Columbia, and the greatest of these icons, our American Flag. Our flag symbolizes to the world our strength, determination, and the rights and freedoms of our people. The very sight of it has given men the courage and willingness to sacrifice their own lives in order to protect what it symbolizes. But where did it come from? For more than a century it has been disputed by historians that the story of Betsy Ross, a widow from Philadelphia could be given the honor of …show more content…
As a child, Betsy was taught to read and write at a Quaker school, along with a trade, believed to have been sewing, a trade taught to many young women of that time. Upon completing her studies her father helped her to acquire an apprenticeship with a local upholsterer, William Webster.

It was here where Betsy met another apprentice, John Ross the son of an Episcopal minister at the Christ Church, and fell in love. During this time period in our early history, the Quakers did not accept inter-denominational marriages, and members of the church who did so would be "read out" or cut off emotionally and economically from both family and the Quaker meetinghouse. Betsy's entire history and community would be instantly dissolved. But love conquered even the harshest of adversity and on a November night in 1773, 21-year-old Betsy eloped with John Ross. They ferried across the Delaware River to Hugg's Tavern in Gloucester, New Jersey and were married. In doing so Betsy severing all ties with her family and community. Interesting enough their wedding certificate was signed by New Jersey Governor, William Franklin the son of Benjamin Franklin.

According to local tax records the couple began their own upholstery shop some time before March of 1775. Competition during this time was fierce and due to Betsy being "read out" they couldn't count on business from the Quaker community. Nevertheless the…

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