Posts Tagged ‘George Washington’


Winner: Babs

A big crowd vied for top honors at Main Street last week – 20 players under Daphne’s firm hand, hoping for glory and a week of feeling smart. But in the end only Babs could claim victory. She edged out Eric, Pete and Droppin’, all tied for second place. Our winner was both humble and gracious in victory: “I finally beat those smart-asses,” she gloated. Ouch!

The game was a real mash-up of topless swimsuits, geometry, and Mormon polygamy, but the most interesting, and controversial question was the lottery question.

Good question!: “The Revolutionary War was the first war the U.S. took part in that was partially financed with what?”

(Never mind that the U.S. did not yet exist)

Choices: A. Private money   B. US bonds       C. Levy of taxes     D. Lottery dollars


Answer: D. Lottery dollars

Imagine George Washington pulling numbered ping pong balls out of a rotating barrel. Probably not. I’m not sure of the exact mechanism employed in that long ago lottery, but history does record their use in funding the war.

Both individual states and the Continental Congress held lotteries. In fact, they had been in use well before the war by the individual states to pay for building of roads and other civic improvements. Harvard and Princeton Universities were partly funded this way as well. England used lotteries to raise funds starting as early as 1612 to help found the Virginia colony. Although the lotteries certainly played a part in raising funds, they were not overly successful, probably because they were viewed as a kind of tax. And, as you may remember, taxes were a sore subject with the colonists.

Lotteries continued to exist after the Revolutionary War, but by the late 1800s had an unsavory reputation for mismanagement and fraud. They were banned by the US government in 1900. But as all of us who bought chances for the record Powerball payout of 1.5 billion in January know, they’re back.


It turns out that George Washington was personally involved in the lottery, hoping for a big score himself. Rare lottery tickets signed by him still exist, and are worth about $15,000 today. Now that’s a winner.

A favorite lottery movie is “Waking Ned Divine” where an elderly gent dies from the shock of winning the lottery, only for his closest friends in their tiny Irish village to rally round and prevent the news of his death spreading too far, so they can attempt to claim the money. If you are headed to Ireland next month, you will want to watch this one:

blogger’s note: this post was carefully crafted by Droppin’ Dave. thank’s Dave.


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Winner: Pluto.
Although these 3 characters (Moe, Curly, and Larry) insist they would have won easily if only they had played. Yeah, Right!

Tonight’s fascinating quiz was put together by Droppin’ – everything you always wanted to know about LI. Surprisingly a recent LI’er, Rhys, and John finished a close second.

There were some inexplicable brainlocks – the Driver missed how many bridges from LI to the mainland (3), and Flyboy Bob missed the northernmost point on LI (Orient Point). They both knew better and kicked themselves the rest of the night. But the most surprising miscue may have been Rosebud who failed to remember that her fave film “Citizenn Kane” was filmed in Oheka Castle, which she passes every day on her way to work.

Good Question!: Where was the Battle of Long Island fought?

a.  Brooklyn Heights     b. Ft. Salonga      c.  Sag Harbor      d.  Sheepshead Bay

Battle_of_Long_Island_Map   U.S._Army_-_Artillery_Retreat_from_Long_Island_1776

Washington overseeing the retreat from Long Island

Answer: Brooklyn Heights

After the British evacuated Boston on March 17, 1776, General George Washington guessed correctly that their next target would be New York. By mid-April, Washington had marched his 19,000 soldiers to Lower Manhattan. He strengthened the batteries that guarded the harbor and constructed forts in northern Manhattan and on Brooklyn Heights across the East River on Long Island.

Washington waited throughout June for the British to appear, hoping that somehow his undisciplined troops could hold off an attack, which he was certain would come in Manhattan. In early July, 400 British ships with 32,000 men commanded by General William Howe arrived at Staten Island. When Howe offered a pardon to the rebels, Washington answered, “Those who have committed no fault want no pardon.”1 While he was still convinced that the British would attack Manhattan, he sent more troops to Brooklyn.

Washington placed General Israel Putnam in charge of Brooklyn Heights, and stationed General John Sullivan to the south and Lord Stirling to the southwest on the Heights of Guan. He posted guards along the main roads leading through the heights, but failed to secure the rarely used Jamaica Pass to the east. This proved to be a costly mistake since General Howe planned to lead 10,000 men through the pass on the evening of August 26 and attack the Americans on Brooklyn Heights from the rear. At the same time, General Leopold Philip Von Heister would launch his Hessians against Sullivan’s troops, while the redcoats of General James Grant would attack Stirling’s position.Early on the morning of August 27, British soldiers fired on American pickets stationed near the Red Lion Tavern at a crossroads in Brooklyn. Washington hurried across the East River from Manhattan but could do little more than observe the fight from a redoubt on Cobble Hill. Sullivan’s men fought bravely but were cut down by Hessian artillery and bayonets. When he realized that the main British force had come through the Jamaica Pass and would soon surround him, Sullivan ordered his men to retreat to Brooklyn Heights before he himself was captured.

General Stirling held off the British for several hours but retreated when he also realized that he would be surrounded. He led 400 Maryland soldiers in a desperate fight at the Old Stone House, giving his soldiers time to flee before he was taken prisoner. Washington, who looked down on the terrible scene could only remark, “Good God, what brave fellows I must lose.”

Last man to leave Brooklyn.

General Howe halted the fighting by the early afternoon and directed his men to dig trenches around the American position on the next day. Before they could be surrounded, Washington ordered his men to evacuate Long Island. From late in the evening of August 29 to dawn on the following morning, Washington watched as 9,000 Continentals were rowed back to Manhattan. As the sun came up, a fog miraculously descended on the remaining men crossing the river. According to eyewitnesses, George Washington was the last man to leave Brooklyn.

source: mountvernon.org

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Winner: Driver Shea

Tonight’s game, with a smaller group of players, was still fast and furious (and loud). Darin was away on a cruise and so the theme was, of course, all about the caribbean. This gave a great advantage to the players who are  “boat people”,  folks who like to cruise around the islands with their peers.

Driver Shea, recently returned from such a cruise, put that knowledge to use and won after being a bridesmaid so many times recently. Close behind were Droppin’ and Coffee Bill.

Pluto showed he’s no boat person – he mistakenly thought that Jamaica was larger than Cuba, which happens to be 10x larger! We all learned that more than 50% of the US population lives within 50 miles of the coast. No wonder it’s always crowded at the beach.

Good Question!: What was the only foreign land that the father of our country, George Washington, ever visited?

Answer: Barbados

Most people answered Canada. Why Barbados?

In 1751, George Washington, age 19, and his half brother Lawrence retreated to Barbados for a seven week stay.  Lawrence, the older brother, was sick with tuberculosis (lung disease) and back then Barbados was known as a health spa for treatment of lung and respiratory ailments. Must have been good, because Barbados is much closer to Venezuela, than it is to the mainland U.S.

George W. left behind an undeveloped colony in Virginia and entered a more advanced world of cultural sophistication. Barbados was the most populated of Britain’s many colonies and made England quite wealthy with the sugar harvests, rum, and molasses.

Bridgetown would have been the largest city he had seen in his life. He visited Bridgetown often and loved the busy streets where vegetables and fruit markets, meat stalls, blacksmiths shops, rum houses, fish stalls, and slave markets could be seen.

To see old George morph into Barrack see this video:

The Barbados Smallpox Incident and the American Revolution

A few weeks before he was to return to Virginia, a near tragedy occurred. George W. came down with smallpox, which caused him severe pain and a burning fever. However, his physician successfully treated him and he survived. Many years later, his acquired immunity to smallpox probably saved his life because this virus spread rapidly throughout his troupes during the American War of Independence. Some claim that smallpox was the number one killer during the American Revolution.

At the time of the Revolutionary War, there were several outbreaks of smallpox. Because survival after the disease confers lifelong immunity, this gave a decided advantage to the British, many of who had been exposed to the disease earlier in life. There were even reports that the British were practicing what we would now term biological warfare, by deliberately spreading the disease within Boston and by sending infected people out of the city to spread the epidemic in the American lines.

sources: coedu.usf.edu, george-washington.visit-barbados.com, celebritydiagnosis.com

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