Pop quiz: What is Nathan Hale famous for saying? Answer will be at the bottom of the post. I love to collect quotes, and this was one of the first ones I memorized. Why? No clue, it amuses me. Much like Patrick Henry’s “Give me liberty, or give me death” speech. Melodramatic? You bet! This was part of our continued journey through United States geography while learning a bit of US history, so I’m going to call this a history lesson. It’s confusing, I know.
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How we came to our Nathan Hale history lesson
So, Connecticut has for two of it’s state symbols a state hero and state heroine. Since I’ve long admired Nathan Hale, and because I knew there was no chance of finding a book on the heroine I opted to read about him. And I loved the book, Nathan Hale: Patriot Spy. Seriously, great for this state. If you can find it, do.
Who is Nathan Hale?
I was going to give you a quick explanation, but then I found out Liberty Kids is on YouTube in its entirety, and the Liberty Kids episode on Nathan Hale is really good, so instead I give you:
But, if you don’t want to watch all 23 minutes of the Liberty Kids episode on Nathan Hale, then here you go.
Nathan Hale was a school teacher, and was inspired by the Declaration of Independence and the revolution. He joined a Connecticut militia, and wanted to do whatever he could to help the revolution. When George Washington asked for volunteers to spy on the British, Nathan Hale was the only one willing to step forward.
It was dangerous to be a spy then. Unlike other soldiers, when caught, they were summarily executed. A soldier had an expectation he could be captured and traded back later. There is no expectation for spies.
He was captured, tried, and condemned to execution. The British officer said he would deliver a letter to his family, but burned it after receiving the letter. His famous last words are….
Still to come at the end of the post.
He died at 21 years old.
Now to our Nathan Hale history lesson
After reading the book and talking about their state heroine as well, we glued pictures of their statues onto a paper that summarized why they were heroes.
The pages were made by copying the material from the links above and putting a picture of the statue below to be cut out and glued on. Super simple, but it conveys all the information without having to write a lot. Since it’s not my creation really I’m not sharing it, but you can get the idea.
Super simple, right? But, why should I keep it simple?
So, I set them to making peg dolls of their chosen hero or heroine. Not too surprisingly the choice split along gender lines. All the girls chose to make Prudence (who they thought looked like a boy in her picture), and all the boys chose to make Nathan.
Can you tell which one I made and which one is Superman’s? Poor guy went through two different clothespins before I gave him a peg doll, and even then he wasn’t happy with how it turned out.
Oh, and I’ve decided I need to order these in bulk, I really love how they look as people.