If you've read the book When God Turned His Head which is the first book of The Locket Saga, you see on the front cover a picture of a locket. What is the significance of the locket, you might ask and what does it have to do with the series of stories?
At first glance, you probably notice that my father first gave the locket and it ended up in the hands of Rachel, before it finally ends up in my mother's hands at the end of the book. This locket has become a family heirloom and it will be one of the things that ties the family together from book to book.
The locket is more than just an heirloom, however. It represents idealization of American Individualism.The locket has it's secret place that contains the lock of my father's hair. That lock of hair represents the origins of the locket. The lock of hair represents the ideals of the colonialists where they believed that by hard work and sacrifice, they would be able to achieve the dream of owning their own stake in this country. The idea that they had a chance to live their lives as they chose. They knew that with each hardship that they suffered, they broke a glass ceiling for their progeny.
The locket itself represents how each subsequent generation proudly displays its ancestor's values. As you'll notice on the locket on When God Turned His Head, on that locket there is a cross. That cross represents the fact that these family members believed in the guidance of Providence. They believed that God wanted them to spread the gospel everywhere they went. By wearing the locket and displaying that cross, they were proudly proclaiming to whom they belonged.
The Thorton family, American ideals, and the locket itself become a three cord thread that connects each book in the saga together. Generations live, generations die, but like the family name, the locket and the ideals live on and affect the people whose lives they touch.
Sunday, June 3, 2012
I know the Revere family quite . Paul’s eldest daughter Deborah was a year younger than I was. I remember when his first wife—Sarah-- died in childbirth and less than two months later the baby born that night also died. It was a sad time for the Reveres. Paul remarried a 28-year-old spinster Rachel Walker just five months after Sarah died. Less than a year later Rachel had her first child with Paul and they named him Joshua. I was training as a midwife at the time and I was the one who helped deliver him into the world.
Most of you have heard about the story of Paul Revere on that famous night of April 18, 1775. According to the poem written in 1860, the fictionalized account of this incident inspired by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s visit to the Old North Church, Paul Revere and William Dawes waited for a signal from the steeple of the Old North church here in Boston. One lantern in the steeple indicated the regulars (meaning the soldiers--we were all British subjects!) were coming by land, a second lantern indicated that they were crossing the Harbor by sea (two lanterns shown in the steeple that night.)
I remember the occasion a little differently. Revere and Dawes left Dr. Warren’s house that evening. Paul and Dawes knew before they left how the regulars were planning to cross. The reason I know this is that I told them. I was privy of the information and took that information to Dr. Joseph Warren’s house. The reason for the signal in the Old North Church was not so that Revere and Dawes would know how the regulars were coming. Like I said, they already knew. The signal was so that the patriots on the other side of the Boston Bay would know how the regulars were going so that they would know where to gather when the regulars did arrive.
The plan was that Dawes would take the land route and Revere would row across the Harbor and ride a borrowed horse to Lexington and onto Concord, Massachusetts to warn the Massachusetts countryside that the Regulars were coming to seize munitions stored at Concord, and arrest John Hancock and Samuel Adams, the leaders of the revolt. Dawes and Revere met up on the road near Lexington. A local man, Samuel Prescott joined them on their ride. Regulars along the road captured Dawes and Revere, but Prescott made good his escape. He was the one who made it to Concord and warned Hancock and Adams.
My own participation isn't well known in this drama, but I played a significant role in the events of that night. Read Soldiers don't Cry when it comes out and the reason my participation wasn't well documented should be clear.