Excerpt from Chapter Two – “A Son’s Duty: a Reason to Hope”Published July 5, 2018
Monday, July 4, 1859, Marietta, Ohio—Sarah Dawes Home, Fourth Street
He celebrates his twenty-first birthday with the family at the home on
Fourth Street, just half a block southeast of the Gates corner. For Sarah,
it is wonderful to have her children together, and she and the girls prepare
a nice late-afternoon meal. The Fourth of July birthday is always
fun for everyone, a double celebration, with morning speeches, afternoon
ceremonies, and evening fireworks. Independence Day has special
meaning in Marietta—so many Revolutionary War patriots buried
in Mound Cemetery, so many of their ancestors still living in the area.
“Happy birthday, Rufus,” Sarah says, smiling at her middle son. “It’s
been so nice to have you back in Marietta. I’m going to miss you, very
much.” They had all kept quiet about it, not wanting to bring up the subject,
but finally, she cannot resist her feelings.