In “one of the nation’s greatest acts of statesmanship,” George Washington addressed the Congress of the Confederation on December 23rd, 1783, to resign his position as Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Army.
Just imagine - a victorious battlefield commander - deciding to renounce nearly certain power and wealth in order to become a common citizen once again. This unprecedented moment in history is memorialized by a life-size statue of George Washington in the Old Senate Chamber of the Maryland State House in Annapolis, Maryland. It stands in the same place where he offered his resignation.
Young reader — "Neighbors helping neighbors" series, St. Colman's preschool, Cleveland, 1994
My father grew up on Guthrie Avenue, literally in the shadow of the majestic St. Colman's Church on West 65th St. The church served a large Irish population up until the 1950s, when the Irish moved to the suburbs. The neighborhoods were next populated by people from Appalachia who came to Cleveland to work in the auto factories. By 1994, when I was doing my project, the neighborhoods were seeing a new wave of immigrants, including people from Central America. St. Colman's School, where my Dad attended grade school, became one of Cleveland's first preschools. One of the nuns at the preschool, Sister Lucy, was still teaching at the age of 80. Her co-teacher, Sister Carol, knew my Mom from their high school years. Both were creative and loving teachers who connected with their young students. Watching this young boy, off by himself reading a book that interested him, I was glad for him that he had two teachers wise enough to support independent learning as well as the more common group lessons of preschool.