Tuesday, May 7, 2013
In a staccato rhythm, twelve small hands were thrust into the air. Surrounded by their parents, this small band of young boys and girls enthusiastically swore to live as explorers, protectors, and cherishers of their country’s rich historical and cultural history. On this day, at Moores Creek National Battlefield, these dozen children were joined by dozens more in being sworn in as official Junior Rangers. To commemorate this event, each child received a badge, a patch, and a certificate, and was warmly welcomed into the National Park Service Family.
On this balmy Sunday afternoon, Moores Creek designed the entire day’s activities to entertain and educate scores of children and families, many of whom had yet to visit this national treasure in their own back yard. From participating in musket drills, to rolling candy cartridges, to donning period clothing—with every boom of the cannon, every pop of the musket, every snap of the flag, and every touch of coarse woolen costumes—a tangible bridge was formed between the generation present and generations long past.
Moores Creek National Battlefield offered a unique experience for families across southeastern North Carolina that enticed them to forgo the usual weekend distractions. For a few hours, they were together, in nature, experiencing what Abraham Lincoln once described as “The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battle-field, and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearthstone, all over this broad land.” On this day, these mystic chords of memory stretched yet again, connecting the hearts of a new generation to an old, yet not forgotten past.
-Joshua Shiver, NPS Volunteer