December 25, 2019


John Stark: A Hero for His Time and Ours: To remind us what a true hero looks and acts like, we've enlisted a local historian and an entire class of illustration students from the NH Institute of Art to illuminate the essential words and deeds of the man who set the standard for selfless heroics. (Janice Webster Brown, 3/13/17, NH Magazine)

His knack of creating fierce and memorable quips continued. Stark's most famous saying is, of course, our state motto. Unlike his battle cry, the motto comes from an 1809 toast, offered in a postscript to a letter to the committee planning a celebration on the anniversary of the Battle of Bennington (he was actually declining to attend due to poor health). "Live Free or Die. Death is not the greatest of evils" is an oft-quoted portion of the letter. It should not be forgotten that he also wrote: "As I was then, I am now -- The friend of the equal rights of men, of representative Democracy, of Republicanism, and the Declaration of Independence, the great charter of our National rights -- and of course the friend of the indissoluble union and constitution of the States. I am the enemy of all foreign influence, for all foreign influence is the influence of tyranny. This is the only chosen spot for liberty -- this is the only Republic on earth."

Posted by at December 25, 2019 7:57 AM