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Fourth of July, 1862



07 03       CELEBRATION AT WATERTOWN, July 4th, 1862

There will be a grand celebration at Watertown, July 4, 1862, for the purpose of commemorating in a proper manner the 4th of July, 1776.  Ample preparations have been made to ensure a celebration worthy of the occasion, in the light of passing events.  The people of Watertown and vicinity are invited to be present.      WD


The exercises will be held at Racek’s Garden, 6th Ward, at 10:30 a.m.


Officers of the day:


President – William M. Dennis


Vice Presidents – Hon. M. B. Williams, Dr. E. Johnson, Henry Bertram, Watertown; Hon. J. W. Bird, Hon. D. F. Weymouth, Jefferson, Hon. W. S. Green, Milford; Michael Ames, Harvey Crandle, Herman Gruber, Emmet; Hon. John Gibbs, Ixonia; Hon. Austin Kellogg, Concord; Hon. H. H. Winter, Town of Watertown; W. W. Woodman, Hon. E. Montgomery, D. W. Aspinwall, Farmington; F. Wegener, Lebanon.


Marshal – Fred Fischer


Assistants – Amos Baum, George Field, Edward Hall, William James, J. Schubert, Peter Rogan, Jabob Zimmerman, and M. Owens.


Order of Exercises


The procession will form in front of Dennis’ Block at 9 a.m. and march thence through Main Street, and up Fourth Street, to the place of exercises:


1st  Music by the Jefferson Band

2d  Prayer by Rev. D. O. Jones

3d Singing by the Musical Society

4th  Reading of Declaration of Independence by H. Barber, Jr.

5th  Music by Band

6th  Oration by J. LaDue, Esq., of Milwaukee

7th  Singing

8th  Oration in German by H. C. Fack, Esq.

9th  Music by Band


In the afternoon there will be music on the grounds by the band, gymnastic exercises, juvenile sports and a grand display of fireworks in the evening.


By order of Committee.



Arrangements have already been made in this city for the appropriate celebration of the 4th of July.  Hiram Barber, Jr., will read the Declaration of Independence; J. LaDue, Esq., of Milwaukee will deliver the oration in English and Henry Fack of Jefferson the oration in German.  Mr. LaDue is a talented and eloquent orator and will give an address that will deeply interest all who hear it.  Mr. Fack is a find speaker and will please the German citizens both in the style and manner of what he will say.


Eighty-six years ago the men of the American Revolution took the first steps in the grand experiment of self government.  They fought a seven year’s war before peace could be extorted from George III.  Then came the duty of framing institutions that should give them liberty, unity, strength and prosperity.  They nobly performed their work and the results of their patient and wise labors may be seen in the transformation of a continent from savage barbarity to the blessings of civilization.


Two generations have lived and died, and today we find ourselves involved in a struggle to preserve the existence of the very government our patriotic fathers organized and put in operation.  Under these circumstances, it is well that we commemorate the virtues and imitate the example of those who have so strong a claim on our gratitude and respect.  The parting advice of Washington and Madison – the one the revered hero-chief in war, the other the far-seeing sage in counsel – was to cherish and uphold the Constitution which made us one people and protected us from the envy and hatred of the despotisms of the Old World. 


Tomorrow let us gladly hail the dawn of our great anniversary with rejoicing, and as the hours of the memorable day move on, recall the scenes that were witnessed in the Hall where Congress was assembled in Philadelphia on the 4th of July, 1776 – listen to the high debate there held, and raise our voices in praise of the acts then and there done.


The men who took part in that drama were certain of only one thing – they knew they were running fearful risks.  Success had not crowned their efforts and the triumph was yet to be won.  There were the armies of the British King stationed in all the colonies – there were the fleets of the Mistress of the Seas riding in every harbor.  These accumulating martial forces were to be met, defeated and driven from the soil they were invading for purposes of subjugation and the deed was accomplished. 


We cannot do better than to summon all our energies and means to put down a rebellion seeking to overthrow and destroy that which our fathers most highly valued, sacredly cherished, and made such unparalleled sacrifices to secure for themselves and us.       WD



All day the streets were crowded with people from the country.  The celebration was in every respect a successful and brilliant affair and we learn that not a single accident occurred to mar the festivities of the day.  The oration delivered by Mr. J. LaDue of Milwaukee was listened to by the thousands present with lively interest, and many passages called forth the enthusiastic applause of the audience.  It was a production of remarkable ability – and so pleased were the people that at the close a motion was made returning the thanks of the citizens assembled to the speaker and requesting that he permit it to be published – a request we cheerfully comply with.  Mr. H. C. Fack followed Mr. LaDue, delivering an address in German.  He spoke well and earnestly, being frequently interrupted by tokens of approval on the part of his German friends.  Taken altogether, we do not remember to have witnessed a better celebration in this city.      WD



Mr. A. Stein, after paying all the expenses of the celebration of the 4th in this city and finding he had a little over ten dollars left, presented the amount to Mrs. W. C. Fountain, the Treasurer of the Soldiers Aid Society, to be expended for the benefit of the sick and wounded in the army.  This is the best and most satisfactory use that could have been made with the funds and the act must be approved by all.     WD



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