June 14th: Happy Birthday to our Army and Other Notes on This Day in American History

June 14th: Happy Birthday to our Army and Other Notes on This Day in American History

Jun 14, 2024

I'm staring at the Merchant's Square statue of Thomas Jefferson, quill in hand.

Not going to lie, I woke up this morning wanting to write but not feeling super-creative; I have a lot of writing planned, but research to do! I'm selfishly feeding my need to get inspired and dig into some history by doing one of my favorite (and simple) articles - this day in history.

Simple because the structure I've created exists. But the history itself, not so simple. And I love that about history! So in the words of Jefferson in a 1763 letter to his constant friend John Page:

"I have been thinking this half hour how to begin my letter and cannot for my soul make it out. I wish to the Lord one could write a letter without any beginning for I am sure it allways puzzles me more than all the rest of it."

I'll dive right in!

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Historical summary of June 14th.

  • 1775 - The United States Army was born! Yes, today is the Army's birthday. Congress "Resolved, That six companies of expert riflemen, be immediately raised in Pennsylvania, two in Maryland, and two in Virginia… [and] as soon as completed, shall march and join the army near Boston, to be there employed as light infantry, under the command of the chief Officer in that army." One day later, George Washington was appointed Commander in Chief. Read the details on the Army's website by clicking here.
  • 1777- Our stars and stripes flag was officially adopted. And guess what- Francis Hopkinson actually designed it. Read more here.
  • 1801- Did you know Benedict Arnold died on June 14th? It might've been due to war wounds. Here's a fun (not primary-sourced so...) read on Grunge.
  • 1811- Harriett Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom's Cabin, was born in Connecticut. Sharing her birthdate: the first female staff photographer for LIFE Magazine Margaret Bourke-White, born in New York City in 1904 and in 1946, former U.S. President Donald Trump. (no politics, just historical significance!)
  • 1922- President Warren G. Harding is the first Presidential voice to be heard by the American public - via radio. It was a recording of his Baltimore dedication of the Francis Scott Key Memorial. More here!
  • 1928- Our 31st President, Herbert Hoover, was nominated by the Republican Party at a meeting in Kansas City. I didn't mean for this post to be so president-centric but June 14th seems to hold a lot of history with our past leaders! Read more about the nomination and election here.
  • 1946- On a lighter note: music! One of my favorite songs of all-time, the Christmas Song, was recorded by Nat King Cole. Read about this amazing American icon by clicking here. Want to prep for Christmas in July? Get the song here.

Flags flying on Merchant's Square, Williamsburg Virginia.

Closing it out.

You can use the links above to get more information on any of the events I listed. And please share any of your June 14th events with us!

Here's one event of note involving then Colonel George Washington- a warning. Click here for the source and all citations/links.

To George Washington from John Dagworthy, 14 June 1757

From John Dagworthy

Fort Cumberland [Md.] June 14. 1757.


Six Cherokee Indians who just now came from Fort Du Quesne, say that six days ago they saw a large body of troops march from that garrison, with a number of waggons & a train of artillery, & by their route, must intend an attack on this garrison.1 I am, Sir, Yr most humble servt

Jno. Dagworthy.

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There is a huge practical disclaimer to the content on this blog, which is my way of sharing my excitement and basically journaling online.

1) I am not a historian nor an expert. I will let you know I’m relaying the information as I understand and interpret it. The employees of Colonial Williamsburg base their presentations, work, and responses on historical documents and mainly primary sources.

2) I will update for accuracy as history is constant learning. If you have a question about accuracy, please ask me! I will get the answer from the best source I can find.

3) Photo credit to me, Daphne Reznik, for all photos in this post, unless otherwise credited! All photos are personal photos taken in public access locations or with specific permission.