It was a hard pregnancy. The energy of violence was prevalent until the last British ships sailed out of New York Harbor. Then came the task of tolerance and the faith of forgiveness for 4-thousand, four hundred and 35 new American citizens died before the birth of Independence was possible.
Independence was a normal child, with endemic growing pains and problems. She fought against others in 1812 and deep within her own family in 1860 as she struggled to keep herself together.
Through the years into maturity, Independence traveled many paths. Old tired ones of war and new jubilant celebrations of peaceful success. Along the way there was boon and bust in the quest for comfort and the persona of independence made its share of friends and enemies, but she always carried the olive branch of reconciliation.
So congratulations Independence on this your birthday. May all your other names of Liberty and Freedom be forever tied to virtue, to tolerance, to honor, and to the God We Trust.