NPS plaque, Footbridge near Meriam's Corner, Minute Man National Historic Park, Concord, MA

A National Park Service interpretive plaque summarizes the fighting along the battle road on April 19, 1775, the first day of the Revolutionary War, when intense fighting took place between British regular and the colonial Minutemen. The plaque declares that the fighting was foundational in forging "American identity." In this sense, the five mile trail can be understood as a nationalist site, designed for inculcating a set of patriotic sensibilities in those who hike it. I must admit that given how beautiful the trail is, and how low key the NPS signage is, I tend to resist this reading, at least emotionally. Yet during this, the 50th anniversary of the founding of the park, it is certainly worth reflecting on the ideological climate in 1959 that led Congress to establish the park, and that led subsequently to the trail being surveyed and preserved. (Mark Auslander)

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mausland (updated 9 years ago)

lat: 42.4586976545, long: -71.3216596842

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