Our Yankee Heritage: New England's Contribution to American Civilization

Our Yankee Heritage: New England's Contribution to American Civilization

Our Yankee Heritage: New England's Contribution to American Civilization

Our Yankee Heritage: New England's Contribution to American Civilization

Excerpt

JOHNNY APPLESEED, that strange and beloved St. Francis of the American West, who went forth from New England to fill the Ohio country with flowering fruit trees, is a symbol of the role of Yankeeland in the life and growth of the United States.

Many seeds that he planted had already been tried and tested. They bore within their genes the handiwork of patient horticulturists in the corner of the country from which he came.

Not many years ago, Luther Burbank produced marvelous new plants and flowers. Hybrid corn is remaking the agricultural map of the world. But even before the American Revolution, the nurseries of New Haven were developing new apples, plums, and peaches. Nathan Beers and others who took the lead have long been forgotten, but their horticulture and their trees moved across the land.

All the New Englanders who went west scattered seeds of one sort or another. They took with them their churches and schools, their free town meetings, their skills and industries.

The story of New England has been told many times in many ways. This account tells of some of the men and women, their backgrounds and their lives, who did much to build those institutions and habits of New England that became important for the whole country. It tells of some of the important ideas and inventions, the great documents of freedom, the love of education, the explorations and trade that especially contributed to the building of modern America. It seeks to describe how some of those ideas and ways of life came about; how they grew and put down roots and became sturdy; how later they were spread across the country.

It was a process by which a new land, with different soil and climate, long nurturing a different race and strange plants and animals, shaped the men of old Europe into new beings, and . . .

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